My brother Dan visited us from Austin, Texas this past week. We aren’t blood relatives– we are friends that understand we are siblings. I hadn’t seen him in almost 13 years.
We had a blast. We discussed everything under the sun. We debated: Are celebrities deserving of sympathy for surrendering their right to privacy? I said: No. He said: Yes. Of course Kurt Cobain came up. I was told I was wrong (actually stronger language was used) for not liking Season 1 of True Detectives. That will likely turn out to be the case. Dan told me much the same about Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction. Of course he was right.
Dan and his wife, Rosie, also adopted a child from foster care. They were a support to us during our trials in the system. He, Ward and I talked a lot about children most people would just as soon forget existed.
Dan told me I should remind people that ‘a typical son’ means we see our son like any kid. He said (I am paraphrasing here): “Thorin radicalized you. You should make it clear every once in a while your intention: he is the same as us. You want us to meet you where you are. You tell us about Thorin so we will understand he and other people with Down syndrome should be included everywhere.”
Dan hires people with cognitive challenges. He pays them the same wage as people who don’t have have cognitive challenges. He wants all his employees to be encouraged to learn more. He thinks everyone is valuable.
Thorin was mesmerized by Dan. And the reverse appeared to be true.
The first night Thorin lurked out in the kitchen pretending to do laundry but in actuality was checking out Dan from a far. After their first official meeting the next morning and through-out the visit Dan treated Thorin like any kid. He said that was in part from reading the blog. I think he would have anyway.
Both Thorin and Dan worship Johnny Cash. So of course they had to sing together. You should check out Dan’s other videos.