What Color Was I Born On?
Daniel Tammet meets Kim Peek (the inspiration for Rain Man)
Absolutely fascinating. Thought-provoking. Interesting. All of these describe Daniel Tammet's Born on a Blue Day: Inside the Extraordinary Mind of an Autistic Savant. I picked this up for my Page by Page online bookclub, after originally passing it by in the first place, and am glad that it was the chosen book for the month. I learned so much about the mind of a high-functioning autistic and was enthralled from the beginning.
In Born on a Blue Day, Tammet sets out to explain how his mind works. He thinks in colors, numbers and shapes. All aspects are unique and all hold a special place in his mind and heart. To see (or read) exactly how he approaches life and different situations was eye-opening. The process he has to go through every second of every day is mind-boggling and heroic!
The parts of the book that made me most angry were those where Tammet described how he was tormented by his peers throughout school. It's so heartbreaking to see how he was treated and looked down upon for something he had no control over. Even some of the teachers treated him with disdain. I don't understand how people can be so cruel. I do understand the frustration, but that frustration is ALSO felt and experienced by the person being treated unfairly. Something to think about.
The latter half of the book focuses on his adult life. It ranges from teaching English in Eastern Europe, reciting Pi for a World Record, interviewing with David Letterman, and filming a documentary about his life. All are truly fascinating and worth the read!