Sunday, April 11, 2010

Nonverbal Language... and Movies

I have been rewatching a lot of movies recently.  Gives me something to do while I'm washing dishes.  I've noticed something.  I'm starting to pick up on a lot of the background stuff that I never saw before.  Emotional cues between characters, non verbal story elements etc...  I'm not certain how much of this is due to the aging process of gaining experience.  I recall listening to some Amy Grant music before and after getting engaged to Bonnie Jean and there was so much of it that I got after being in a deep relationship that I hadn't picked up before.

How much of this means my expression of AS is evolving as I develop as a person?  That would be nice, but its also unstable.  My development can shift forwards or backwards without warning.  I recall one time when I was so proud of myself because I was talking to three girls at once, said something that caused an unintentional emotional reaction, read that expression off all three of their faces in real time, responded to it in real time, and addressed the unintended reaction.  Wow that was a good day.  Normally most of that would happen after about a minute and a half of analyzing and the conversation would be over before I could address the problem.  Then, I was unable to read social context or anything social that was non verbal for about the next three days and I think I made my professor want to kill me.

Or maybe its simple repetition?  Wow, I just watched Star Wars for the billionth time and now I finally get that facial expression that passes between Han and Leia at the end of the last movie.  I really don't know.  I probably have bits of all those going on.  In any case, it makes it kind of fun to watch these old movies.  I'm in the middle of Star Trek: The Movie (ok I felt like enjoying some old cheesy stuff, I know the movie is awful but its fun at the same time) and there's all sorts of things that I just passed by before that suddenly make sense.  I mean, the entire Captain Decker and Captian Kirk duking it out over who is more competent to lead the ship.  Sure I understood that it was there, but watching it now I get a lot of the emotional aspects of that battle and the politics behind the scenes of how they are relating.    Or there's things that suddenly don't make sense.  Why does Spock understand their "new" engines that "nobody" understands when he's been busy training to be a monk of logic or whatever you want to call it  for the past who knows how long?  I guess monks of logic get to study ship design?

In any case, its like watching the movies for the first time suddenly, or as if its a completely new movie.  Now if only some of this could translate to real world application that could be fun.  I'm guessing it could be happening there all the time and I'm just not realizing it because I've developed such a caution in dealing with people that I don't take risks where I might not understand what's happening.  For instance, I was IM chatting with a team lead about a new position I'm considering applying for, and I was practically triple verifying what he was saying to make sure I understood him.  That's worse because I don't normally interact with that particular person much and I always always struggle when I'm changing team leads, teachers, or whatever.  I don't adapt to different people's communication/leadership styles readily and I was trying not to make any big mistakes.  I can't hit rewind and watch the movie of John the team lead and Justin the closet aspie over and over again until I understand it.  Guess movies have their advantages.

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