Once upon a time, I had little control over Justin. In truth, that only made sense since #1 he had autism and #2 he was a bit of a terror*. I might have been better at dealing with him if I had not had three other kids to tend to, but so it is. Nothing that can be done about it now.
Back in the day though, while the other three kids were doing their thing—baseball for Brandon, t-ball for Tyler and softball for Alexis-- Justin was NOT gonna do any of that. While the others were playing and I was going from one game to the other giving each kid a bit of attention, he was wandering about.
His favorite thing to do was go to the tiny stream at the back of the park to toss stones in...or so I thought that was all he would do. You might wonder that I didn't think he might drown in the water, but I thought he was safe because—and this is where autism sometimes is a great thing-- he didn't like getting his clothes wet. Hey if you go screaming when a drop of water hits your shirt, wouldn't you stay away from water? Well, that was my thought too.
Justin however...well, let's just say he doesn't think like you and me. For a 6 year old he was rather crafty. He didn't want to get his clothes wet so, naturally he took them off BEFORE going in the water...ALL OF THEM. My little nudie was found splashing and having himself a good ol' time in the stream. A group of kids were laughing uproariously at the sight....until one of the parents saw the streaking boy walking across the park after his fun time.
Oy...what a commotion. Most people thought that entire thing the funniest thing ever. “That goofy Lennon kid...he's always good for a laugh!” They all thought.
Tom, however, got an earful from an indignant dad of two “sweet, naive, innocent girls”** who would be surely traumatized from seeing Justin's Winky in all its bare glory. They, after all, had never seen such a thing and should not be subjected to the like, especially at a baseball park.
“Seriously, dude, you actually believe that?” Tom said to the indignant father. “If your girls at age 13 and 15 truly have not yet seen a male in the nude, I'll eat this catcher's mitt!”
Well, all I can say is Justin kept his clothes dry...pity he left them behind by the stream. Fun times with Justin, I'm telling ya!
*Not too sure one didn't have something to do with the other.
**As it turns out, these “sweet, naive, innocent girls” a short few years later became quite popular with boys in high school...for reasons I shall NOT go into right now, but which surely shocked Daddy dear.