I always start polite and go from there.
We were overnighting in a hotel and, unusually for us, we were going out to the theatre for a seven o'clock showing. We were chatting excitedly because we were going to a live performance of Phedre starring Helen Mirren which was being broadcast from London. I mean, really, how cool is that. I had just pulled up to the elevator doors when two large, burly, men who were clearly drunk came crashing down the hallway.
I tensed. I don't have a great history with drunks. They tend to find themselves very funny, when their not. The tend to presume, wrongly, that I'm their 'bud'. They started by making jokes about how much space I was going to take up in the elevator. I'll pause for a moment for you all to wipe the tears off your face, that's funny that
ok, back. I smile, I mean really I don't care all that much. I didn't like how by sitting it put me in a position of inequality and they breathed down vapours of alcohol and cigarettes on me. Finally, in answer to desperate unspoken prayer, the elevator doors openned. I asked them to step in first. I mean I've done this before and it's way easier for them to get in, then me. My chair is long, they won't have to crawl over me to get in.
They absolutley frigging insisted that I get in first. As I began to push one of them grabbed the handles on the bar of my chair. I quietly and politely said, 'Please don't touch my chair.' He laughed and said, 'I'm just helping you, 'bud'. (You thought I was kidding earlier didn't you?) Now he used some force. I'm got strong hands and I held tight so the chair would not move and said, with clear anger, 'I SAID, DON'T TOUCH MY CHAIR'. He let go and I pushed in.
Predictably they had to near crawl over me to get in. I said, by way of explanation, 'I don't like being grabbed by strangers.' The offender said, 'I didn't grab you I grabbed the chair.' I said, 'The chair is part of me.' The other guy seeing the offender really, really upset changed the subject and I chatted with a friendly tone. I didn't feel friendly but I didn't feel like getting punched out either.
When the doors openned, I pulled out first, they near leapt out and headed to the door. Joe, who had looked like he had ridden in the elevator with a ticking bomb, took hold of the back and began to help me out. I heard the offendeer say, 'What are cripples for if you can't help them out?'
Let me say that again, 'What are cripples for if you can't help them out.'
So, that's why there's disability. So drunks can feel better about themselves by giving a helping hand. Ah, what a wonderful intellegent design, making cripples so that normal people get a chance to be charitable.
Finally, a purpose.