Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Too Much Trauma

Things have gotten to the point where going to the grocery store is a really traumatic experience for me. It gets me all riled up.

It’s pretty much the same as how taking my nightly shit used to get me all riled up. My last official act of every day is to sit on the bowl. This is what the new agey, self-care types would refer to as my “me” time. Except the problem was that I would also use this time to read a little before bed. And I read a bunch of lefty political magazines and I’d go to bed grumbling about how the fascists are taking over and everything was going to hell. And I couldn’t sleep so my wife decided that I needed to read something that was full of nothing but good news so she subscribed me to a magazine that was all about beer. And when I read my beer magazine, I’d come to bed in a much better mood. I guess I was soothed and reassured by being reminded that even if the fascists are taking over and everything is going to hell, at least we still live in a world where there’s a wide variety of beer.

But what gets me all riled up when I go to the grocery store are those people who park their cars in the striped area next to the cripple parking spaces. That’s even more ignorant than parking in the cripple spaces themselves because those striped areas are there because wheelchair cripples like me need extra room next to the parking space so we can deploy our ramp or lift so we can get out of the vehicle. So what happens is we park and go inside the store and when we come back out we see that someone has parked in the striped area, which means we don’t have room to get back into the vehicle. When this happens to me, I say to myself, “Didn’t that jackass see all those stripes painted on the ground? If not, they’re too blind to be driving!”

And didn’t they take a minute to consider that those stripes might mean something? They’re the same stripes that are painted in the fire lane and everybody knows that it means that you don’t park there or you’ll get towed. But you won’t get towed if you park in the striped area next to the cripple parking space.  If I complain to the manager that someone is parked in the striped area next to the cripple space, they’ll just shrug and mumble a generic apology. They don’t want to tow anybody for that reason because they don’t want to piss off customers. Apparently, they don’t mind if they piss off customers like me.

One time the vehicle parked in the stripes next to the cripple space I was parked in was a tow truck. Who do you call when you need to have a tow truck towed?

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Thursday, September 14, 2023

Cripples as Sales Leads


 A stranger approached me on the street a couple weeks ago and it really made my day. Because usually when a stranger approaches me on the street it’s a dreadful experience. Because usually the only reason a stranger approaches a cripple on the street is either because they want to a) give you some spare change because they think you must be a beggar or b) tell you about Jesus Christ. 

Either way it’s quite annoying. The Jesus boosters are particularly annoying. One time one of them said to me, “Have you heard about Jesus?” My first impulse was to be a smart ass and say, “Who?” But I was afraid that he wouldn’t get or appreciate the joke and thus he would proceed to answer my question in great detail. So I said nothing and just kept going. I similarly try to avoid the Jehovah’s Witnesses. They stand on the sidewalk downtown next to a rolling rack full of books and pamphlets, so I just assume they’re Jehovah’s Witnesses. But I don’t know for sure because I’m afraid to ask them who they are. I’m afraid to even make eye contact with them. There ought to be signs all over town that say DO NOT FEED THE CHRISTIANS.  

I feel kind of insulted when Christians approach me on the street because I think they think that because I’m crippled, I therefore am a great potential sales lead for buying what they’re selling, which is Jesus.

But the stranger who approached me on the street a couple weeks ago wasn’t selling Jesus. He must’ve been selling drugs because he was bleary-eyed and as he reached into the pocket of his jeans he said to me, “Hey bro, I got sawbucks.” I didn’t know what he meant but it sounded like drug slang, so I just said, “Thanks anyway.” And I kept moving.

And then the stranger said to me, “You straight?”

So I replied, “Yes, I’m straight.” I assumed that being “straight” means that your current inventory of drugs is sufficient.

The stranger then approached the next passersby and said, “Hey bro, I got sawbucks.”

But I felt somewhat honored that the stranger tried to sell me drugs. At least he saw me as a potential sales lead for buying what he was selling, and it wasn’t Jesus.

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Thursday, September 7, 2023

The Bathroom Police


 I often pull up to a parking space that’s reserved for somebody with a cripple vehicle but it’s occupied by a car that clearly belongs to some dumbass vert (which is what I call people who walk because it’s short for vertical*).

But sometimes I get lucky and that dumbass vert will return to their car while I’m still there. And then I get to experience the joy of watching the look of shame jump onto their face when they realize they’ve been busted. It’s so cool when that happens.

The same thing happens a lot when I try to use public bathrooms. Almost always, the one and only cripple stall is locked because it’s being occupied by some dumbass vert who is taking the longest shit in human history. And when that dumbass vert finally comes out and sees me sitting there that same look of shame jumps onto their face.

Except the difference is that the cripple parking spaces are clearly marked with a big blue sign with that white crippled stick figure on it and it warns that any dumbass vert who parks there can be fined $250.

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a sign like that on every cripple stall in every public bathroom? And wouldn’t it be great if I could call the cops and they’d kick down the door of the cripple stall and drag out the dumbass vert with their pants still down around their ankles and haul them away? Maybe the police would even have a code for this offense, something like 10-56= dumbass vert using cripple stall.

But it probably would never work that way. I mean, those big blue warning signs don’t stop dumbass verts from parking in cripple parking spaces.

*Not all verts are dumbasses.  Vert dumbassery is a spectrum. Everyone is on it at some point but those who park in cripple spaces are on the deep end.

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