Reed and Weap

Okay, I managed to spend £135 today, and I still don't have a pair of sandals. What I do have is a new bicycle and accessories. Also I have discovered the only useful purpose served by bullbars on domestic cars - the bike is currently tied to some.
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Have you ever met a genuinely dyslexic person? I don't think I ever have.

There's been no shortage of people who never learned to read well, and never did enough writing to memorise idiosyncratic spelling. Some attended school rarely, others had unpleasant childhoods that made systematic learning impossible, and probably the majority just never had any childhood interest in reading or writing.

None wrote mirrored letters of the alphabet. They were often uncirtain about spelling, but didn't transpose letters.

But I must have heard the words "I'm dyslexic, you see" hundreds of times from people who, for one reason or another, never got the vast amount of practice needed for fluent reading and/or writing.

Of course, there is the wierd idea that mental disability comes packaged with compensatory abilities. Aspergics are supposed to be logical, ordered thinkers. Dyslexic people allegedly have great verbal, academic or musical skills.

It sounds rather like the myth that blind people have sharper hearing, or the medieval notion that dwarves are natural acrobats. A curse can be worn as a badge of pride or individuality.

The word 'dyslexia' is a general term for symptoms that may include difficulty in forming letters (but not creative drawings or geometrical designs), misordered letters in words, and confusion between letters which are horizontal or vertical mirrors.

It does not - so far as I know - describe any identified neurological conditions which might cause such symptoms. It is a label that can cover anything from a narrow range of identifiable quirks in handwriting to the broadest, vaguest notion of 'having trouble with written words'.

Even the narrowest definition doesn't give a clue as to a cause, or suggest any method of treatment beyond 'extra practice and tuition'.

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