Charlie Brown’s teacher

Earlier this week we had to go sign a bunch of legal documents for our pending house sale, and discovered that when we originally bought the house, my last name had been misspelled on the house documents. The solution the lawyer came up with was to deal with it by having me sign an ‘also known as’ document showing both the correct and incorrect spellings.

Chaos ensued.

Part of the problem was that I wanted to argue the point; I’m not really ‘also known as’ this name, it’s just that the last lawyer was on drugs and did a terrible job (that’s not hyperbole – he got busted about a year later, sent to rehab, and I think, disbarred) and I rebelled against signing a legal document that isn’t the literal truth. The other part was that I just couldn’t seem to follow what she was telling me to do. It just sounded like a bunch of words strung together that didn’t make actual coherent sentences.

I’m sure she must have thought that I was a complete idiot by the end of the process, but I have trouble following verbal directions to begin with, and asking me to misspell my own name was something that just derailed my brain, somehow. She kept saying “sign it here, here and here this way, then here, here and here the other way.” and I just kept having to make her repeat the instructions. In my defense, the form didn’t really have any labels on the lines showing what went where, so I had no visual aid to help out.

The other challenge was actually signing the name spelled wrong. That’s harder than you’d think! (Seriously, try it…)  Luckily, the fact that my signature is all but illegible to begin with and tends not to ever look the same way twice probably worked in my favor here.

By the time I had gotten the form filled out, I had a headache, was more than a little frustrated and embarrassed, and wished I’d had the nerve to say “I’m not actually stupid, you know, just autistic” but figured the best thing to do was to just move past the awkwardness and get the hell out of there.


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