You don’t want to know what happened next

I just got a message that my deceased friend HVP has joined Telegram.

She was Dutch. I’d known H since the late 1980s. She was a physicist who became a policymaker who worked at the EU, among other places. Her PhD thesis was on surface melts of lead crystals. Solid state physics. (There is some overlap with earth science. Every earth scientist worth his or her salt has looked at articles published in physics journals.)

H was also a very dedicated modern dancer at a high level.

A photo I took a long time ago, in Utrecht. HVP is on this side, her back turned towards us, talking with Ietje Paalman-de Miranda, who also passed away recently.

Until progressive MS put a stop to all of that. Very fast thinker. I loved working with her even though we often disagreed on certain things. We had different preferences, different views on some things.

But if you needed to work with someone to really get things done, she was it. I don’t think there’s ever been anyone else I so enjoyed working with. (She and I did a lot of the organization including publicity for one or two symposiums and that was a lot of fun. Too long ago…)

We had dance in common too. I saw a lot of modern ballet in those days, at the theaters. Modern dance. I danced flamenco for a short while and I remember she recommended someone to me after I returned from the US, but I never picked it up again. I tried to connect with a flamenco dance group here in or near Portsmouth but I never heard back from them after I contacted them (as has been the case with many other things I tried here).

Anyway, this message about a dead person joining Telegram may be intended to let me know that the text message I got from APDP the other day was faked. (In combination with that strange popup telling me that all my messages are being translated, which I got a few hours earlier, that sounds likely.)

It is of course also possible that someone else has her phone number now and that that was why Telegram alerted me. Except… her number is not on my phone. It can’t have been. (I checked. Just in case… Nope. It isn’t.)

I am not going to fret over it either, as there is nothing I can do about this kind of thing.

I also have received a phone call from someone who sounded just like HVP. After her death. A strange call. When I tried to call that person back, at the university where she claimed to be working, I found that I couldn’t. I tried more than once, too.

That event back then cued me in to when I received two calls, before, at the time when I last saw HVP, from two people who sounded just like two other people I knew (CH and SH), it likely was not a coincidence. I knew one (CH) from my student days in the 1980s and the other one is a visual artist I have worked with. The person who sounded like SH said that she had called the wrong number, was looking for her mother, and the other one, who sounded like CH, was supposed to meet with me, but said that she’d had a call from “the head office” that the appointment had been canceled.

These two images below seem fitting. However – see my previous post in a minute – as I sometimes get the impression that I am (also) dealing with someone who is autistic, it is also possible that this is HIS way of letting me know that I have a new fast-thinking friend?

Did you know that some forms of autism may be related to the mother experiencing domestic violence and fear while she is pregnant?

I edited this post the following morning.

As you can tell, I usually initially respond with anger and upset over these things when they happen. Because what someone else out there is doing is very controlling and I do not like that at all. It is also in a way insulting. I understand that for example Asperger’s can work out that way (but mostly in private, not so much in public, so perhaps in this person’s dealings with me but not in his dealings in public?).

It is possible that this person wanted me to get what I needed at the lowest cost possible, use wifi on it to do what I need to do and only use the phone as a camera after that. Its cameras are definitely superb relative to what I had! But I also felt not so happy about having only phones that are hacked and needing to use the wifi of one of my other hacked phones to do what I need to do. From the perspective of someone who’s autistic, however, it may all make perfect sense. I can see that. (After I think about it for a day or so.)

I think he’s also been trying to tell me that my friend with NPD probably does not care about me at all. I know that. I appreciate her for who she is. (And there is plenty to appreciate about her!) I will soon make some videos about that. Apart from that, I know that she needs to have someone in her life who knows her. She can get very upset when she loses someone who’s been in her life for a long time. I think that’s because it makes her feel lost in a world that must be so alien to people with NPD so often. If you think about NPD a lot and try to step into the shoes of people with NPD, you come to realize that the world must often be a really scary place for them.

What do I mean? Put yourself in the shoes of a small child who’s been told to go to the headmaster, or to the child’s father’s room, and who expects that person to be very cross with them. (I picture movie scenes.) That has to be part of the daily life experience of people who have NPD, the part that they so desperately try to hide from the world. 

Or, think of an animal that is afraid of fireworks.

It has to be the scariest thing in the world for someone with NPD to know that someone else understands that they have NPD. Also, in a world with so much negativity about NPD, it has to be one of the scariest things to seek out the help of a professional (psychologist etc). My friend has done that.

I think she has learned practical techniques for communicating. I recognized that in her e-mails at some point and I sometimes see it in her e-mails these days, too.

If the rest of us knew more about NPD and learned to take it into account, we could keep people with NPD feel safer and thus we might be able to lower the amount of friction in the world.

And ultimately… think of this, too. The world causes a lot of NPD when it mistreats its children. 



When this kind of stuff happens, also stuff on my computer, it is remarkably often accompanied by various kinds of sound effects from my immediate downstairs neighbour.

Jesus F Christ!

I get a new phone, which I need for some official business, set up a new gmail address for it and about 30 minutes later, maybe even less, receive the message “that text was charged from your credit” (I did not send a text and I noticed that almost all my call credit was used up at that point, which I had only just bought at Tesco across the street), a warning from gmail that my recovery phone has been changed – I didn’t even have a recovery number yet – and find that that new google address has already been hacked because I can no longer log in.

Should I mention that I heard my neighbour rummage around a lot under my office, earlier?

Goddammit, you piece of shit.

Unless that phone had already been hacked one way or another as it came in purple packaging and with candy. And I couldn’t use a new SIM in it, had to use one of my existing SIMS. The latter indicates that the hacking was done by my immediate downstairs neighbour. As usual.

On my other phone, I got a sudden message about all my e-mails being translated. No idea where it came from. Can’t find it anywhere. A popup.

But hey, this is England, where literally anything goes.

There is literally nothing I can do about this right now. If we weren’t in a pandemic, I could go set up my phone anywhere else, free from any hacking by neighbours, but we are. So there is nothing I can do. You don’t go sit on a park bench to set up your phone in cold weather. And where else can you go, at the moment?

If it was not my neighbour – but so far, it’s always been him – then I got targeted by an Amazon seller who thought that I would use that phone for banking. Nope. And if that was the case, then maybe he got ticked off by that, and then decided to hack my new e-mail address and use up my call credit.

But my bet is on my immediate downstairs neighbour. The whole thing simply has that flavour… including another phone suddenly being much more expensive and then this one popping up on the screen.

Maybe the idea was to teach me a lesson? But the actual lesson in this is a very different one, and it’s one for them, one that they are too dim to get. I’ve given up on telling them. I gave up years ago.

Okay, okay, okay, I get it. I do. Or at least I think that maybe I do now.

Here we may have an example of someone who is autistic genuinely wanting to help me and having no idea of how his help can come across on others.

Einstein apparently once said that we have a choice to make about whether we believe we live in a hostile world or a friendly world. I have no idea what that was about – nuclear weapons perhaps – but it is certainly true to a large degree with regard to neurodiversity. 

Sometimes, you have the choice between believing that someone has good intentions – which can come across as being naive but also helps protect your physical health – or believing that someone wants to harm you. It can make a big difference for what happens next.

Of course, someone with good intentions – but limited experience or tunnel vision – can still do a lot of damage.

I happen to have a neat example of what I mean. When I was a toddler, I once helpfully pulled out all the carrots in the garden because I had seen the adults pull out weeds and didn’t know the difference between carrots and weeds.