Monday, February 03, 2014


Hey, here's something that happened the other day.
First, while this may qualify as TMI, it's important for the sake of the story that you know that when I visit a public restroom, I will take every possible step to avoid using a urinal. I think they're gross. There's the whole splash-back factor plus a lack of privacy between neighbors. I will always wait for a stall with a good ol' toilet in it. And if there's no particular demand, I'll hold out for the accessible stall, the one designed for people in wheelchairs and with other impediments. Those are downright plush. They're self-contained miniature domestic environments with their own hand sinks, soap dispensers and paper towels. Some of them are bigger than apartments. I get in there and I immediately feel comfortable. I feel like I can relax, get all the way naked if I want to, walk around, stretch out, collect my thoughts, and do whatever I need to get myself together and face the world. It's truly a rest room under those circumstances.
The obvious drawback is what, though? That's right; keeping someone who actually needs it from using it. That's a truly awful thing to do to another person so I never go in there ahead of anybody who obviously has some special needs. But there's always the threat of coming out and encountering someone waiting, scowling at you as you walk out. For that reason, I have an appropriately indignant response prepared if that somebody engages me in a conversation about it.
"Hey man, just because I'm not in a wheelchair doesn't mean I'm not disabled. You don't know. I might have been injured in combat and it's like ham salad down there. I mean, I didn't and it's not. The point is you don't know what I have going on and so you can't judge me. Don't judge me!!"

By then, I will have been able to get out of there and if he actually needs to use the facilities, which he probably does, he isn't going to follow me. Take that, wheelie!
The other night, I was at the grocery store and went to the restroom, where I occupied the preferred accomodations. I came out and there he was, a guy in a wheelchair, scowling at me. The first thing I notice, aside from the scowl, is the jacket he's wearing with the Brazillian flag on it. Right after that, I notice the words "WHEELCHAIR RUGBY". If I'm not mistaken, and I'm not, that's the sport that's also known as Murderball. And who plays Murderball? Logic would dictate that the answer is murderers. I worked all of this out before I noticed the four guys behind him in wheelchairs, wearing the same jacket and very similar scowls. Good thing I rehearsed my response for this exact situation.
"Hey man... Hey. I'm not... I'm not in a wheelchair. I'm not...uh...disabled. You know. I might have been injured. Ham salad, uh, down there. I mean... it's not. The point is... the point is you don't. Don't judge... Don't kill me!!"

I think that went about as well as could be expected.

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