Talking backwards with the ‘Backwards Dude’ Incredible man with the insane ability to both sing and talk backwards urges others on the autism spectrum to embrace the difference and brilliance of their minds.
- John Sevier Austin credits his ability to talk backwards to Asperger’s syndrome
- He taught himself to sing ‘Strangers in the Night’ backwards when he was young
- John says: ‘Embrace being different, find out what your gift is and then go out and blow people away’
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By Luke Kenton
This incredible man who has a mind-bending ability to speak, sing and talking backwards has urged others on the autism spectrum to embrace their differences and individual brilliance.
Growing up, John Sevier Austin always knew he was different and struggled to relate to those around him, but it wasn’t until his near-48th year of life that he found out the reason why.
Finding refuge amongst the cruel taunts and comments by listening to his music in reverse, John – after accidentally misusing his record player once – taunt himself to sing Bert Kaempfert’s ‘Strangers in the Night’ backwards in its entirety.
Talking Backwards over the years aloud him to move on to tackle difficult sayings and phrases such as ‘Antidisestablishmentarianism’
Crediting the source of his brilliance to Asperger’s syndrome – a form of autism – after only having been diagnosed with the condition a year ago, John has urged other people on the spectrum to celebrate their ‘uniquely gifted minds’.
John, a full-time video editor, who is now fluent in the art of backwards talking, said: “People are amazed when I tell them I can talk backward – then completely blown away when I do it.
“When your talking backwards you have to really work on enounciating the vowels, cloves and consonants just right.
“My brain is able to do all these functions all at once and this is what blows people’s minds – in face it even blows mine.
“Growing up as a child I learnt to talk backwards after accidentally laying one of my records backwards.
“I discovered some songs sounded good that way and so I decided to learn to sing along.
“[Growing up] I was always different. People would treat me poorly and I could never figure out why.
“Until last year I never realised I was on the spectrum, but when they told me everything just lined up – especially my perspective on the past.
“When you see someone who seems strange or different when you’re a kid, you just make fun of them.
“For somebody that’s on the spectrum, don’t let anyone tell you that you’re stupid or that you can’t do something.
“Talking backwards has allowed me to just go out and be myself – amazing people with how gifted my brain is.
“That’s what the spectrum us like, we can do extraordinary things so don’t let people bring you down.
“Embrace being different, find out what your gift is and then go out and blow people away.”