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About Paula

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  • Birthday 01/18/1961
  1. Continuing to discuss characteristics of Asperger's: Some aspies would consider the key characteristic of Asperger's to be perseveration. This means that when an aspie becomes interested in something, he or she can become obsessed with learning everything there is to know about it. Perseveration is an asset in a scientist, who needs to be obsessively focused on his or her particular area of research, and is one of the reasons that many aspies are attracted to the sciences. Some aspies, when you ask them some little question about their research area, will start going on and on and on
  2. Which is exactly the reason that live audiences are used, for almost all sitcoms. Live audiences are an expensive hassle and limit the camera angles that are possible (compare the "stagey" look of most sitcoms to the more natural look of sitcoms without live audiences like The Office or Andy Griffith Show or M*A*S*H*) and adding canned laughter would be so much simpler. But the one reason that live audiences are used is that, universally, comic actors like audiences and want them and enjoy them and feel that they perform better when they hear response from the audience. As for laughter sou
  3. I have been to a few sitcom tapings over the years (not TBBT). They have hosts who try to get the audience in a good mood and who remind the audience that they are part of the show and are actually participating in the show by laughing out loud. So most audience members seem to try to do a good job of laughing. I remember one time after a scene, the host said to the audience "That was great, but unfortunately we are going to have to redo that scene, and I know the joke won't be as funny now, but can you laugh as much as you did before?" So we all laughed harder than ever through two more ta
  4. Like I said, there is no one characteristic that is characteristic of all aspies. It is a spectrum. Some people have most of the characteristics ascribed to aspies, some people have a few of them, no one has all of them. If you have some aspie characteristics but not enough to really consider yourself an aspie, you can say you are "on the spectrum." Some aspies would consider the obsession with predictable routine (Sheldon's spot, his moving his bowels every day at 7:20, etc) and difficulty in dealing with changes in routine (like Sheldon when someone takes his spot) to be one of the mos
  5. These are very interesting and intelligent questions that people are raising. It is not easy to define Asperger's because it is a syndrome. A syndrome is a group of unusual characteristics that tend to occur together. But no one person ever has all of the characteristics of Asperger's, so there is no one characteristic that can define it. You can find an exception to every single generalization about Asperger's. But the important thing to understand is that it is not a disease or affliction, it is an alternative type of neurological wiring. Sheldon illustrates so many of the charact
  6. As I watch more of the show I am getting more and more fond of Leonard. He is such a great straight man. But I think he would be a lot less interesting without the interplay with Sheldon.
  7. Part of this sounds to me like Asperger's and part of it doesn't. This part does: There are several things in this paragraph that sound aspie-ish. First, about routine. (Like Sheldon and his spot.) Second, the need for predictability. (His need to be warned and prepared for a disruption like a visit really resonates with me.) The TV schedule may be important to him because of the fact that it is so predictable. Aspies (like Sheldon) tend to be attracted to fields like computers and physics because they involve regularity and predictability. If you are an aspie but not particu
  8. And the thing is, he still didn't know WHY he was funny. He was only trying to be precise, and why should that be funny? But after his initial surprise, he was gratified by their laughter, even though he didn't understand it, since it was laughter that included him, rather than laughter at him, which a lifetime of ridicule has taught him to ignore. And laughter that includes you feels good. All that conveyed in just a few brief seconds. I thought, "If this actor hasn't won an Emmy already, he surely will." And a little googling turned up that he has won two Emmys, a Golden Globe an
  9. But the one that doesn't make sense is Lizard eats Paper. Never ever would a lizard eat paper. I could see Spock eating a paper before I could see a lizard doing it (especially if eating the paper would keep the paper from disproving him). Lizard poops on Paper might be more plausible.
  10. The funniest combination is Paper disproves Spock. And it is also funny that they all do Spock not only because they should be able to predict that the other players will do Spock, but because issuing the paper that disproves Spock, a famous scientist of the future, would be a triumph for any of them. On the other hand, maybe they all have too much reverence for Spock, and as a result, no one will ever do Paper and risk disproving him. Still, it's fun to picture Sheldon jumping up and down afterward crowing, "My paper disproved Spock!"
  11. I like Amy. I liked discovering that the show had not just one but two aspie characters, and soon started exploring the differences between them. Amy is not just a female Sheldon but her own character. She is my second favorite character after Sheldon, and Amy-centered scenes without Sheldon are almost as much fun to watch as Sheldon-centered scenes. That said -- Amy just doesn't feel to me as organic a character as Sheldon. Amy seems like a well-written and well-acted character. But Sheldon feels like a character who developed organically. Like. sometimes novelists talk about c
  12. Agree with this. As someone said in another thread, Sheldon is what makes the show special. When Sheldon isn't in a scene, it seems like a run of the mill sitcom. About Bernadette, she is cute and amusing, but she is about as ordinary and stock as a sitcom character can get. I feel like I have already seen her a million times. I like her (that character wouldn't be used so much if she weren't likeable) but IMO she pulls the show down to ordinariness. Also (although I haven't seen all the episodes) it seems that she doesn't do much funny interacting with Sheldon. It seems that she (
  13. Exactly my feeling. Not that there aren't other things about the show that are entertaining, but without Sheldon it would just be another run of the mill sitcom.
  14. I understand, and appreciate your intent. It wasn't about using offensive words, it is about the popular perception of Asperger's as a disease, when it is actually a different kind of neurological wiring. I read somewhere that the writers of TBBT didn't want to think of Sheldon as aspie because it would change the whole tone of the show if Sheldon had an "affliction," and it would be wrong for his friends to make fun of him if he was "suffering from a disease" instead of just being Sheldon. I think it is fine that they don't label Sheldon or base the character on a template -- he is perfect
  15. I first heard of the show in an an online discussion group where several aspie teenaged boys were talking about how much better life had become for them since their classmates started joking about how "Sheldon" they were, instead of beating them up. "Sheldon" made aspies funny and sympathetic, and that was already positively affecting some young aspies' lives. "Who is this 'Sheldon'?" I wondered. So when I heard he was an aspie character in a sitcom, I decided to check it out. The very first scene I ever saw was so dead-on perfect. It went something like this: Another character: "Ho
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