Friday, April 16, 2010


Off again on my own. This is becoming a habit. I was going to meet someone for tea, Joe was parking the car, we'd agreed to meet at the teahouse. I have to go a very convoluted route because there is construction that bars the regular wheelchair entrance. So, I was off. Suddenly I realized that I was headed in the same direction that took me to the corner where, the other day, I was nearly attacked by a rude woman's boyfriend.

And I almost decided to go another way.

The same day as I was threatened on the street for asking a woman, politely, to move and let me pass, I had to use an elevator. A fellow came along and was going to ride with me. I suddenly, and unlike me, panicked and decided that I didn't want to get on the elevator and be alone with someone else. I let the other fellow get on and said, 'I'll take it next time.' He said, 'There's lots of room.' I said, 'No, OK, go ahead.' He looked really offended but let the door close.

The next day I was taking WheelTrans to work and got there early. The driver asked if he could come in and use the washroom. I was the first there so I unlocked the door, set the alarm, then rode the elevator up to let him in on the second floor. I felt nervous, vulnerable. But he used the washroom and left without incident.

So as I was driving along and thinking about this new nervousness, this skittish as a cat behaviour on my part, I thought, (forgive me) Fuck it! I'm not going to become a scaredy little disabled victim who trembles at his own shadow. What happened on the street was one guy, one time. I've gone over that intersection a thousand times without incident.

There are angry people in the world who lash out at people. I just happened to be in a wheelchair, it coulda been anyone who asked a woman on a cellphone blocking the way to move. It isn't about me. It isn't about disability. It's about him and her and their behaviour. Fuck it. I'm not going to let them influence who I am. Why would I give them that power.

So I pointed my wheelchair in the direction of Yonge and Charles, set a look on my face that said the world was a bright and pleasant place --- and I went for tea.


theknapper said...

good for you!Feel the fear and do it anyways.....

MC Mobility said...

Yay! Go, Dave!

Princeton Posse said...

Bravo! Encore!!

Colleen said...

Way to go Dave!

You are absolutely right - those people were bullies - their behaviour was more about them than it was about you.

Brenda said...

Awesome. Good and bad incidents can happen on any corner, in any elevator, with any stranger. And although after what you'd been through, I'd probably get butterflies in my stomach at THAT corner for a while, we must not live in fear. If Karma is doing its job (and I believe it mostly does), there will be more good than bad incidents, everywhere.

moplans said...

lovely Dave ! I am so glad you went.
so much tragedy lies in the fact that the victims are hurt but the perps hardly think about it at all, if ever
so very, very happy that you went for tea.

rickismom said...

Here in Israel, (where going out to eat can remind one of the possibility of a terrorist bombing), the general concensus is:
I will not let fear rule my life, or it is not a LIVING life.

Cynthia F. said...

Good for you. I got screamed at so rudely I was in tears for asking a guy to move over a tiny bit on the subway (he was taking up two seats unnecessarily and the train car was packed, at rush hour). I am not disabled so he just called me a stupid c*nt instead of a stupid cr*pple...You feel so horrible but you realize with time that it's them, not you.