Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The erudite family, AKA I miss you Grammy!

Because my blog readers are all intelligent, rather erudite people themselves, I am sure you all know what erudite means.  Simply put, it means well read, in the 'reads a lot of books about a lot of things so is very educated and knows at least a little bit about most anything' meaning of the work'.  Presumptuous and arrogant calling myself erudite may sound, well...I call myself the Erudite Aspie because I just am.  I was raised in a family that believed in reading and education, particularly on my maternal side.  My Grammy never saw a book that didn't interest her, and her favorite thing to do was go to museums.  She brought up my mother this way, and my mother brought me up this way, and so on and so on.  It's a family trait--erudite mom and erudite sister live up to their names, and I have an erudite aunt and an erudite brother.  Above and beyond reading and museums. our family has a tendency to take classes, or listen to classes on iTunes University, for no other reason than the sheer fun of it.  We enjoy reading, we are insatiable in our quest for knowledge, and we always seek answers to questions.  Our idea of fun is playing trivial pursuit (sometimes we just read the questions and don't bother with the board).  We are in love with fun and unused words like happify.  We rock at Jeopardy.  And any one of us could lead a decent discussion about Plato's Allegory of the Cave.

My earliest memories of this are from erudite mom and the supremely erudite Grammy--who passed away almost 7 years ago, and who I miss every day.  She gifted us all with a natural desire to see and explore and learn that stretched from the LaBrea Tarpits to Chaco Canyon, and the world is a lesser place without her.

My Grandaddy, who also left a gaping hole in the world when he left it, was erudite in the quiet, less obvious way.  You'd never see him go to a museum or take a class, but beware.  He had an encyclopedic knowledge of agriculture, pests, history, geography, and aviation.  Plus, he served as tech support for the entire family.  Grammy and Grandaddy together were an unstoppable team when it came to jeopardy or trivial pursuit.  Against them, the rest of us had to throw in the towel.

As a child, a very Aspie child who was unaware she was Aspie, I was often accused of having my nose in a book all the time, and not participating in family events or socializing, and all the other negative things that can be said about a dedicated bookworm.  The concern, of course, was that I wasn't learning social skills.  That was true--but it was also true that as an Aspie I didn't have a snowball's chance in hell of learning them anyway.  So I was lucky in that my favorite past time, reading and the learning that accompanied reading, also served as the best way to avoid situations that were overwhelming to my poor Aspie self.

And you know, I turned out pretty OK after all.  And erudite besides!


PS--happify--an unused old English word that means 'to make happy'.  How great is that?  See why I love this stuff?  


  1. Yes, I DO see! God bless your dear Grammy.

  2. What a fantastic happenstance... accidentally landing on your blog has made my morning.