Thursday, August 17, 2023

The Terms and Conditions of my Acceptance


It happens to every cripple sooner or later. You’re sitting on a street corner minding your own business when suddenly some walking person tosses a few dollars in your lap and says something like, “God bless you.”

I used to get all huffy and indignant whenever that happened to me. I always felt it was important to say something to the person like, “Just because I’m a cripple doesn’t make me a goddam beggar!”

But now my perspective has changed somewhat. I’m willing to except the bucks that are tossed my way, but I still feel it’s important to let the tosser know why I’m accepting it.

But rather than give a long speech, what I ought to do is carry around several copies of a document entitled THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF MY ACCEPTANCE. Here’s the first draft that I’ve put together in my head:

To whom it may concern,

I am accepting the money you just gave me because one of the hardest things about being crippled is that it’s so goddam expensive. We have to buy a lot of ridiculously pricey stuff most people don’t have to buy, such as wheelchairs and catheters. We may have to pay somebody just to help us drag our sorry asses out of bed every morning.

So I would be remiss in my fiscal responsibility to myself if I turned down any offer of financial support, as paltry as it may be.

But let me also be clear that I do not consider it to be your responsibility to eliminate the aforementioned inequities that come with being crippled. The permanent solution is socialist revolution. I’m not talking about the kind of bull shit socialism where some asshole like Stalin is in charge. I’m talking about creating the kind of socialist society where if someone needs a wheelchair or catheters or assistance dragging their sorry ass out of bed every morning, they can get what they need without delay or hassle and without going broke.

If you really want to help cripples like me, you should join the fight to bring about such a revolution. Meanwhile, we cripples still have catheters and wheelchairs to buy. And if our wheelchairs break and we have to get them repaired, paying for that will make Bill Fucking Gates go broke!

So I will grudgingly accept your contribution and I'll try not to feel too demeaned. And no, I can’t give you a receipt so you can write this off your taxes.

Sincerely yours,

Smart Ass Cripple

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