Yesterday after dinner I parked off to the side, out of everyone's way, so the others could go down the dock and look at the boats and look in the water for frogs and fish and foul. I am a bit addicted to a game on my phone so, when they got out of my range of sight, I pulled the phone out and began to play. I heard a very loud, very deep, drunken voice say, "How about a bear hug?" I turned to see him attempting to climb up on a wooden statue of a bear. He thought himself hilarious. So did the man with him, bent over laughing. The woman with them was standing, watching like she'd seen this shit before and wishing the taxi to arrive.
I was next, I knew I would be. One of the fellows came beside me, a boozy breath followed the "Hey, man, nice to meet you." over to me. Then, for some incredible reason I will never under stand he reached out and touched me on my stomach. I reacted, I couldn't not, it was an uncontrolled spasm. He saw it and started fumbling apologies and questions. The other guy then saw patting my stomach as a challenge and he headed over, his hand got near me and I pushed it away. A new set of apologies came on to of the others still flowing.
They talked to each other and couldn't figure out what they'd done wrong. They were back. "Does it hurt when we touch you there?" "No," I said, "It doesn't physically hurt." Then one of them in a blinding flash of insight, said, while patting his stomach too, "Sometimes I feet fat too." I looked over at him with hostile incredulity. A face so plain he could read it. "That's what you think this is about? That's what you think?"
They stared at me.
"I don't like strangers touching me, it's called 'boundaries,' man, 'boundaries'." They stared at me mystified. Absolutely mystified. Then the tone turned. "You don't need to get like that man, we're just trying to be friendly. You're the one sitting here alone in your wheelchair. Thought we'd brighten your day."
"Great," I thought, "kids in hospitals get tickets to the circus and all I get are these two fucking clowns."
I looked at him hard and said, "I'm not alone, the dock is inaccessible, I'm in a wheelchair, I'm just waiting, in the quiet for them to come back. And at that moment they did.
As we rolled away, I said to Joe, "I am a magnet, and absolute magnet for this kind of shit." He nodded and said, "Just remember,that magnet got me too."
Score one for the magnet. But could someone find the power source and shut the damn thing off.