Familiarity of Freaks
As I was reading Mendel’s Dwarf, I was confronted by the fact that although Dr. Lambert suffers from an extreme “Freak” syndrome, much of his insecurities were very normal. In essence, everyone is a freak, as everyone has something that embarrasses him or her or makes him or her self-conscious. Too tall, too short, too gawky, too big, too plain, too unfashionable, anyone can be quickly labeled upon first glance. We stare at those who are extremely physically different because it makes us seem more normal, more accepted, less of the freak that each of us is in our own way. Furthermore, physical hardship can often propel one to great success. Many athletes have overcome great distress to reach greatness. For example Jackie Robinson was considered a freak simply because of the color of his skin, unable to even stay in the same hotels or eat in the same restaurants as his teammates on the Brooklyn Dodgers. He overcame his label to lead his team to six World Series. Although Lambert was born a dwarf, he was not born driven. His ability to not fall into despair, to strive to find the small genetic malfunction which lead to his disease, makes him not only a freak, but also a dedicated, extraordinary genius. His story parallels Mendel’s who too was looked down upon, seen as a town eccentric, ignored as a forward thinking scientist far ahead of his time. Therefore I say, bring on the freaks!