Tag Archives: communication

Memories of a Time Past: Part 6

Brooklyn was where I was born and raised, and also where my Mom and Dad were born and raised.  Home was always “Brooklyn.”  I was never a sports fan per se, but the Brooklyn Dodgers was “my” team.


Mom and Dad were married in Brooklyn, and so was I, and also my sister.  When I hear “Brooklyn” mentioned, my ears perk up and I want to know in what context my borough was spoken about.  It’s just the way it is.

I have sweet, loving memories about my Mom’s parents:  Tillie and Louis Blacker.  They were sweet and thoughtful people, and they were always available for family – whatever the reason they were needed, they were there for you.

My Favorite Grandparents

My Favorite Grandparents

Grandma and Grandpa lived in an apartment house on Nostrand Avenue, between Church Avenue and Linden Boulevard.  Third floor walk-up.  Even though I was a young girl (7 or 8), the apartment didn’t feel that large; although there were 3 bedrooms.  When we came into the apartment from the dark, small stair landing, we walked into a narrow hallway.   There was one bath to the left as you walked into the apartment; a tiny kitchen after that, with a very small table pushed up against the wall with 3 chairs (I remember the chairs creaked when you sat down), and a very dark wood, ornate, old cabinet where Grandma kept some groceries.  She always had a box of Cheerios in that cabinet.  She knew I liked Cheerios.  (Yes, there were Cheerios that long ago!!)

There was a nice-sized living room which shared a wall with the kitchen.  And the master bedroom, about the same size, was next to that.  The 2 other bedrooms to the left of the hall were quite small.  No dining room.  They had a narrow table against the shared kitchen wall in the living room, which pulled out to make a long table when the whole family was over for dinner.  I don’t remember having dinners there, but I’m sure there were.

I remember a big, light wood, old radio standing in the living room.  It actually was a lovely piece of furniture, and Grandpa would sit in his chair with his newspaper, and have the radio on at the same time.  He was comfortable in his chair, and I was comfortable in his lap as he tried to read his paper.

old radio

I remember my Great-grandmother (Grandpa’s mother) lived there.  She had the small room to the right of the hallway as you walked into the apartment, and past that, my mother’s youngest sister had her bedroom.  Great-grandmother was a kindly lady.  She was suffering from old age, and couldn’t really leave her room.  My Mom would attend to some of her needs when we visited during the day.  I remember Great-grandmother (I called her Baba) would sit by the window whenever we were there.  She loved my Mom and was so grateful when my Mom tweezed her brows and trimmed her facial hairs.  She died when I was nine years old.

There weren’t any phones in the building at that time.  But, there was a communication system, nonetheless!  There was a candy/luncheonette/newspaper/magazine/cigarettes and cigars store downstairs.  The owner was a very nice man, and he had a public phone booth.  He allowed the tenants in the building to give out the phone number so they could communicate with family.  Whenever a call came for Grandma and Grandpa, he would stand outside under the window, and call, “Mrs. Blacker!”  He must have had a loud voice, because even with the windows closed, he was heard.






World Autisim Day April 2nd

Dark blue clothing and/or a dark blue ribbon is the recognizable wardrobe to signify your support for autism.
Autism Awareness Month

Autism Awareness Month

Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that typically lasts throughout a person’s lifetime.  People with ASD have problems with social and communication skills.  Many people with ASD also have unusual ways of learning, paying attention, or reacting to sensations.  It is part of a group of disorders known as Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).  In most cases its causes are unknown.  Today, 1 in 110 individuals is diagnosed with autism.  Autism usually manifests in the first year of life; its onset is not later than 3 years.


Click here to watch a video to get a realistic view of how children suffering with autism behave, and the options available to try to help them.

There are different forms of autism.  Asperger’s Syndrome is one other form.  Children and young adults (Aspies) suffering this form, are usually extremely intelligent, so it is more difficult to diagnose.  They can learn ways to deal with social situations, but cannot communicate “normally” with people.  They usually do not start a conversation, but will answer questions put to them.  That is usually the end of the conversation.  Their social interaction is short-lived; although, these patients can focus on what does interest them.  Interests can range from animals to computer use.  It is these interests that can occupy them in an obsessive way.  Other obsessions may be present; for instance, OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) is very common.  Jack Nicholson, in the movie, “As Good As It Gets,” played a character who had OCD.


The children with more common forms, along with Asperger’s, are extremely sensitive to visual and audiological stimulation.  Their hearing can be super-sensitive and loud noises can cause extreme disturbance.

Here is a video of a young girl, Carly, who has uncontrollable body movements, but as she grows older, she has found a way to communicate through the keyboard.  It was found she is highly intelligent; whereby, before, she was thought to be retarded.

Autism, in its many forms, is striking higher percentages of children as each year goes by.  It is imperative that a cause be found.  There are many unproven theories as to what is the cause.  Could it be environment, or food, or genetic abnormalities?  Does it occur at fertilization, or in the uterus?  Without further research, no answer will be found.  This is another disease that needs the support of the good people of the world.