Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Honey, Asking For a Gift is Rude

For the past year and a bit I have been working on a personal project, with an eye to eventual publication. I've been searching the web to find disabled people of note - then I've tried to find something they have said about their disability. It has been an enlightening journey, I've discovered people, like Virginia Hall, whom I now openly admire. A collection has grown, slowly, and at last read is quite remarkable. Several sources have helped, the Disability Studies at Temple University blog has been a wonderful resource. Penny Richards is a hero of mine. The folks at BBC's OUCH blog have also given me much to work with. These are two of hundreds of resources that I've found and used.

The blog universe, however, has been frustrating. I've found many quotes but couldn't use them because people seldom publish thier blogs under their own names, so the quotes couldn't be accurately attributed. I felt that asking the writers, in the comment section of their blogs, to go public was inappropriate somehow. So, I'm wondering if you could all do me a favour. If you have a favourite quote about disability generally or, better, your own disability specifically, would you mind sharing it with me ... and the world. If you don't want your name and blog to be associated in the public's mind, just send it to my email and thus no one will know who writes what blog. I promise not to tell. I should say here, that I'm also interested in quotes from parents of people with disabilities (have a wonderful quote from Josh Blue's mom) and from people who work in the field of disabilities (but please indicate that to me when you share).

This whole collection began shortly after I became disabled. As I grew more and more curious about a community that I no longer 'worked with' but 'belonged to' - I wondered if my own personal reaction to my own disability was 'common' or 'typical'. So I began a search to see how other people with disabilities reacted to their own disability, what public face they put on it. Now I've got a collection of nearly 100 pages of quotes. Some of them outrageously funny, some of them provocative, some of them sexy, some of them spiritual, all of them have the ring of truth.

I'm nearly done, what I want now is to flesh out the historical quotes with quotes from you all. So if you would gift me with these I'd be forever in your debt. Well, maybe not forever, maybe not in 'debt' - but it'll make me happy. The quotes should be short, a line or two, but other than that, no rules. So ... it's over to you. You can either email me or just put it in the comment column.


D Phoenix said...

That sounds like a very interesting collection. Have you seen the film "Shameless: the art of disability" from the NFB? The artists with disabilities featured in it are very smart and funny and outspoken. I bet you could get some fine quotes from this film. Persimmon Blackbridge and David Roche are particularly witty. Don't forget to search Canadian sources! :)

As for the folks online who don't publish under their given names - they might not be able to because of being on a disability pension, family limits etc. but perhaps they feel that their online names are, in fact, very real in the fact that they are chosen names. Just a thought.

Dorian said...

I'd love to share one of mine.

My 7 year old son as autism, specifically PDD-NOS. He's an absolute joy to us (most of the time). During my many years of therapy, doctors appointments, preschools, special education classrooms, etc. I have found one thing quite prevalant, our kids are all different. Something that works for one family might not work for another. Therefore...

If you've met one autistic child, you've met ONE autistic child!!

Heike Fabig said...

It's a bit long, but i wrote about one of my favorite ones in a post on my blog.

My son made me proud with his statement "why, what's wrong with my CP".

Have a read, if you like it, and want to use it, i'll tell you his real name...

Ettina said...

Why not just quote them under whatever name they use? That's what I do.