by Daniel Oliver

I’m dyspraxic. On page 88 of The Adolescent and Adult Neuro-diversity Handbook Sarah Hendrickx says that that can mean I ‘may find organization difficult and live in a chaotic, cluttered environment’I wanted to write about what’s good about the chaotic and cluttered environment I slept in as an adolescent but don’t sleep in now I’m an adult. I wanted to write about how it was like a nest. Instead I digressed into something about being eaten out by a fox and not having a soft-on with some Germans. I think that’s because I am writing it in my bed and also because I am dyspraxic and I find sticking to what I plan difficult. That’s part of finding ‘organization difficult’ and I like it, it is also like a nest – a slightly dirty one which is what a nest is like. The dirt keeps you warm. I don’t know what that mean as a metaphor. 

I used to sleep with a fox living under my bed. It was room I’d also shared with an Iguana and 2 rats and a bed I’d shared with a plethora of dogs and occasionally a ferret or 2. Now no one lives under my bed, as far as I know, it’s too low down. I share it with my wife and most nights with one or both of my two children. We just bought a massive bed because we take up a lot of space and with the kids as well it just gets too much. Once when I went to America on my own I had a massive bed where I stayed in a guest house owned by two women who, before I arrived, I had assumed were a couple but it turned out they were nuns (maybe also a couple). I was at a conference there and I got chatting to a woman who had also come from London and I said “I’ve got a massive bed” and then she looked at me in a way that suggested she thought that I was suggesting she get in that bed with me at some point because it was such a weird thing to say and then she closed the conversation down and went away. I just wanted her to know I had a massive bed. I’d never slept in a massive bed before. The bed I slept in with the fox under it was a much smaller red metal bunk bed. The mattress looked fine from the top but if you looked at it from underneath then you could see that the insides had been all eaten out by the fox.  I don’t know what that means as a metaphor. Saying ‘eaten out by a fox’ sounds kinky if you take the word ‘fox’ to mean like a handsome person like “OH YOU FOX YOU”. But I don’t mean it that way. This is just like the massive bed incident again. 

Someone said that one of the things that makes you a grown up is when you stop hanging out in friend’s bedrooms. I think this is a cultural thing too. My wife’s german friends just stroll in and chat with us in the morning when they stay with us. I really like the private feelings of light-taboo breaking it brings. It’s like when you go to a sauna in Germany and everyone is just starkers. I love the feeling when everyone is just fine with something or pretending they are just fine with something but I am secretly finding it really exciting. Not like ’sexciting’ as they say. Does anyone say that? They should. This is like that massive bed incident again and that ‘eaten out by a fox’ incident again. Let’s call it the ‘not being sexcited in a sauna’incident.  Actually, with the sauna thing it is in a bit of a ‘sexcited’ way but definitely not ‘problematic’. ‘Problematic’ – that’s another thing they say. There was no visible response, if you know what I mean. I mean a ‘soft-on’ as they say. Which is also, incidentally the main reason for not just coming into someone’s room in the morning and chatting with them. We can call that the ‘german friend in the bedroom and not a soft-on’ incident.

I remember having a meeting with some people about art at a woman’s house and I could see her bed through an open door and I said “cool bed” or something like that, maybe “I like your bed” and she said “that’s the bed I was conceived in” and she was really proud. 

No one was conceived in this bed because it’s a new bed, which we got so we could fit us all in. I’m not into conceiving anymore– two kids is enough so its mainly just pegging now, dyspraxic pegging. 

Anyway, I don’t really have a messy room anymore and no animals live in it because – lifeprotip as they say – when you share a room a person who doesn’t like living in chaos and mess then you gotta keep it tidy it doesn’t matter if you call it a nest or not. We don’t have any pets. Just chickens which we like to think of more as livestock because of the eggs. We also have stick insects. But not any animals in here ever, which is a good thing. Apart from when we had mice. I remember it got really bad when we saw a mouse running over our baby’s cot. He’s 5 now. The baby, not the mouse. We put a trap out and turned the light off and waited to hear a snap and then a squeal – ideally from the mouse, not the baby.  But apart from that there is no non-human animals in here. We’ve got a telly instead. I always thought if a couple have a telly in their room then it must mean their relationship is terrible, but we really like it.