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Rated: ASR · Fiction · Experience · #2155016
A chat with a mentally challenged person, written for the Dialogue 500.
“Are you okay?”

“Okay. I’m okay.”

“Are you sure? Because I saw you from across the street, and you looked like you might be lost.”

“I’m okay. You looked like you might be lost. But I’m okay.”

“Well, if you’re sure.”

“I’m sure okay. I’m waiting for the bus. When the bus comes I get on and I’m okay.”

“Are you alone? I mean, I don’t want to insult you, but do you know where you’re going?”

“On the the bus. I’m supposed to get on the bus.”

“And because of all the people standing here, you thought that this is the bus stop?”

“I’m supposed to get on the bus.”

“I’m afraid this isn’t the bus stop, but I can see how you might get confused. These people are just watching that man over there. The one singing and playing the guitar.”

“I like music. It makes me feel good. Do you like music?”

“Yes. Very much.”

“Very much. I like music very much.”

“And you need to get on the bus. But the bus stop is at the next corner. Would you like to walk there with me?”

“Okay. Can we hear music there?”

“I don’t think so. But if you don’t want to miss the bus, we should start walking.”

“I like music. I like to sing, but I don’t know very many words.”

“I’m afraid I don’t either. But we can try. How about if I start a song, and maybe you can think of some words when I run out of them.”

Itsy bitsy spider, went on the spout. Now you sing the next line.”

“Okay. I thought I was going to sing the first line, but I hadn't thought of a song yet. Down came the rain and washed the spider out.

Down came the rain and wash spider out.

“Well, I guess we can both sing each line. Out came the sun and dried up all the rain.

“I like rain. And I like sun, too.”

“Yes, rain and sun are nice. Do you want to sing the next line?”

“Okay. Itsy bitsy spi . . . I see the bus.”

“Yes, here comes the bus.”

Out came the bus, and . . . that doesn’t sound right.”

“We’d better hurry.”


“Um, do you know where to get off the bus?”

“I think so. Downtown.”

“I have an idea. Why don’t I ride on the bus with you. We can talk, and maybe even sing.”

“I like that. You’re my friend.”

“And you’re my friend.”

“My name is Robert, and I’m glad we’re friends.”

“What a coincidence. My name is Robert, too. Hello, Robert.”

“Hello, Robert. My name is Robert. And we’re friends.”
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