by ラリー・ビショネット（Larry Bissonnette）
If there is Larry’s home on a map of the world, it would show that I live in a little state in tree lined and outdoorsy New England. It is Vermont popularly known for maple syrup and liberal politics that has given me the values for living a life of peacefulness and the creative inspiration for my art.
I like to say that I am dealing in artistic sipping of fine wine of creativity rather than drowning in sorrows of autism. Pricing my artistic work lets me link up my abilities to living for a meaningful wage. Your average person on the street is learning about me in ways they might mostly overlook if they just looked at my IQ score in the psychological reports giving me the label of profoundly retarded laced with autistic disordered behavior.
Earlier in my life, it would have been possible to make this label stick because I didn’t have the power or means to express myself like I do now with typing, warranteeing my intelligence through complex language typed on various kinds of keyboards. Please look somewhat carefully at my loaded up with pictures language for clues on how my mind works. Larry sleds down the slope of communication, dodging bumps of language processing difficulties instead of shards of over matched potential for intelligent expression.
It used to be that I voiced my desires for concrete things like food and music channels on the radio and expressed opinions and feelings with obnoxious behavior. Lots of older people would believe my limited communication to mean that branches of intelligence were stunted in growth and my interests, listing Mcdonald’s cheeseburgers at the top, were narrow in the scope of their seriousness and intellectual richness. Like a powerful lightning storm knocking outmoded power grids, like people experiencing a religious conversion - that is placing my experience of typing in words, my inner thoughts and ideas, in a context of immense change outside of the limitations of societal beliefs about disability.
This appearance of the Larry you see now happened over fifteen years ago when Pascal introduced typing to me in his office, offering me time on a primitive, operated fine for one fingered typist like me, computer and light physical support, working on opening my speech impulses to more intentionality and less rote and outside of operational functioning in social interactions.
Most of my successes only can be attributed to my support being consistent for a long period of time and having opportunities to speak at conferences and show off my good looks in movies. It is like a struggling actor getting a sudden big break and putting their talents into opportunities for stardom. Opening this door for people to politely but powerfully walk through not only takes the support of a person’s team. It also takes the positioning of the principles of equality and acceptance of differences on an altar of lasting opportunities for people who communicate in other ways besides speech.