Island of Merzy – part 1

While I was reading up on famous Aspies, I came across an assertion that Albert Einstein could NOT have been an Aspie, because he had a sense of humour!!!

This came from someone who is apparently considered to be an ‘expert’ on Asperger’s syndrome….  How sad.  It sounds like one of those ‘experts’ who only considers a very small percentage of Aspies and – proverbially – sweeps the rest of us under the rug.

Just for the record, I would like to repeat:  Aspies have a sense of humour!!!

If you don’t believe me, read xkcd (apparently, they picked the name so it could not be pronounced as a single word…but I was only told that after I HAD been pronouncing it that way…my native tongue can have sentences that are gramatically correct and make sense – yet contain no vowels…and YES, I DO love ‘tongue-twisters’!)

Alternately, let me tell you a story about the island of Merzy….

Once, long ago, when the Earth was smaller than it is today – well, at least the ‘KNOWN’ world (i.e. known to the Europeans who KNEW they were at the centre of the Universe), there was a small, unchartered island somewhere in the tropical band about the world. This island was called Merzy.

It was inhabitted by a wonderful peoples. One day, a European explorer happened upon that island and immediatelly fell in love with it, the people, their culture – or, perhaps, just the
Chieftains’ daughter.

Either way, he feared that as more Europeans would come, they would consider the natives to be ‘savages’, because they did not display the ‘European trappings of power’. The best way to protect them, her reasoned, was to -within the frame of their culture – also teach them how to emulate some of the things that would force the Europeans (who were bound to follow there, now that the paradise-like island had been discovered) to treat the islanders with respect – and not like the other indigenous cultures they had encountered while ‘discovering’ the globe.

It would not be as difficult as all that, our explorer thought…

First, the Chieftain had to be referred to as a ‘King’. That is what all the Europeans called their leaders.

Second, he had to appear ‘kingly’. That meant a proper, golden throne, and that sceptery thingy and the apple-gold-bally thingy. (I love technical terms!)

Third, they had to do something about the architecture….since all the buildings on the island were really just straw huts, the Europeans might not take them seriously, after all.  So, they had to ‘Europeanize’ the buildings – you know, they had to put up a fancy facade…

Getting everyone to call his beloved’s father ‘King’ was easy. At least, he taught them that the word ‘Chieftain’ translates into multiple European languages as ‘king’ – same thing, really.

Then, they set about building a huge, multi-story straw hut.  Yes, a ‘proper’ building would have been better, but, well, you had bamboo and much straw – and little else for building materials, so the plans had to be adjusted a bit from ‘palace’ to ‘big, two-story hut’.  (Please, note that I did NOT say ‘hutlace’.)

But – they did it! It was magnificent! It was very large, so most of the natives from the tribe could gather inside for celebrations. It had two stories around the edges, and the middle was open to the tall ceiling.

And, in the place of honour – the centre of the hut/palace, they placed the masterpiece – a magnificent, golden throne! Yes, it was not easy to make the throne, but it really was magnificent:  inlaid with mother-of-pearl and all kinds of precious thingies.  A real throne!

The King even got a crown, sceptre and the roundy-bally thingy, which matched the style and look of the throne: golden with pearls all over.

Now, they would be ready for any Europeans to come!

The explorer, sadly, had to return home. After all, even though he wanted to stay, he owed a debt of honour to the Queen (it is ALWAYS queens who fund the most excellent explorers – I think it has to do with longing and the mystique of the unknown) to come back and give his report.  With him, he brought many specialities from the island… and he promised that as soon as possible, he would seek permission from his Queen to return to the island and seek the hand of the Merzian princess (chifetain’s daughter) in marriage.

Time passed, but nobody came.

More time passed, and nobody came.

When it became clear that something had gone wrong with the explorer, and he was not coming back – and nor were any other Europeans (the island was rather well sheltered and hidden from major shipping routes), the islanders slowly put away the’European trappings of power’ – except that they did like the big hut! It was an AWESOME party place!

But that big throne was always getting in the way….so, to keep it a bit out of way, the islanders decided to shove it up to the second story of the hut – the whole second floor had, really, become one big storage space.

One day, they had a most excellent party!

Lots of dancing, tea-drinking, singing, and coconut-clapping…..and then, suddenly, with horrid, tortured creaking and cracking, the floor under that heavy throne gave out!!!

The whole hut started collapsing, caught on fire from the party torches, and EVERYBODY DIED!!!!!

And WHAT, do you ask, is the moral of this story???


… and they say us Aspies have no sense of humour!!!!  We can make things funny AND follow the rules of how humour works!!!