Monthly Archives: July 2010

I’ll just be a minute….

Picture this…

You’re disabled, badly. In Queensland you qualify for a disabled parking sticker,  but in New South Wales you’re told, as that useless leg is still attached, you won’t get it. If you were enormously fat, says the doctor, acknowledging how bloody unfair it is, no problem. It’s a pity, he adds, that you’re such a fit cripple, and haven’t let yourself go, or eaten yourself into diabetes.

Women with children get close parking. You don’t. Okay, so you cope. You walk despite being crippled. You pull up outside the chemist, on your way in for your heavy duty painkillers and nerve blockers. Someone parks beside you, so close you can’t get out. Even an able  bodied person couldn’t slide out. You wind your window down.

Mate, you say, you’re too close, you’re blocking me in the car. I won’t be a minute, says the man, dashing past you. So naturally, you back out, re-park a few spaces away, and get out. You limp back to the car that was blocking you in. With your good leg, you kick the door in. Then you limp away.

****

You’re about to use the self-serve checkout at the supermarket. It’s evening, when you shop because there are less crowds, as it’s easier for you to deal with a trolley, something you find very hard with your bad leg. You can also get parking close by, which as you don’t qualify for a disability sticker, makes a huge difference.

A woman and her partner are blocking three self-serve checkouts. One with their two trolleys of soft drink, frozen food, and chips, then the one they’re using, and another with their giant pram.

Excuse me, you say politely, would you mind moving the pram so i can use the checkout? We’ll just be a minute, says the woman.  Five minutes later, they’re still feeding different cards into the reader, trying to find one that’s not maxed out. Your pain levels are rising, you don’t do standing well.

Rather than offering to kill them if they don’t get out of the bloody way making a scene, you go to the one manned checkout and queue for a while. You see the couple at the self service checkouts are now getting the staff to remove items from their bill, then going through the rigmarole of feeding through their twenty cards again. You notice there’s no baby food in their two overflowing trolleys. No nappies either. (Diapers.)

As you leave, fifteen minutes later, they’re still there, still looking for a card that works, apparently too stupid to walk twenty metres (about that in yards) to the nearest cash machine, and find out which, if any, of the cards has any money on it at all. You’re poor, you have sympathy for those in the same boat, but there are limits. You hope they choke on their bloody chips.

****

Up in Queensland, when you did have a disabled permit, you’re pulling into the bank parking area, when someone in a large 4WD cuts you up, and parks across two disabled parking spaces. Oi, you say. I won’t be a minute, says the man, hurrying to get into the bank.

So you stop right there, get out of your car, and even with your leg brace on,  something in your eyes warns the man,  he doesn’t pass you, and runs back to his car, which he moves into a non-disabled space.

****

You’re walking with a severely disabled friend. She’s had a stroke, only one side of her body moves. She can move at a shuffle thanks to her braces and cane. People keep barging into her, to the point where you are hyper-alert, watching ahead, behind, and to each side, ready to say oi!

There’s plenty of space around you, no need for people to come so close, but they don’t look, intent on their own lives, and insist on pushing past, in so much of a hurry that a two-step detour is impossible. You’re not in some central city area, this is at a quiet suburban shopping centre. It isn’t some once-off freakery, it happens every time she goes out.

****

You’re at the shops with your disabled friend. He’s walking with a stick, slowly. It’s Christmas time, heavy crowds.  Even so, as the woman nearly knocks him flying, and hits him (on his bad knee, which stands out, it being held together with a large metal leg brace) with her shopping, several people around see, and join in with your “Oi! Look out!”

The woman looks back,  and you shout angrily (over the noise of xmas carols) that she nearly knocked him over. She humphs, and says she’s in a hurry, like that’s a good enough reason to knock over a disabled person – or anyone.

The other people giving sympathy and offering help are very much appreciated, and make you both feel better, but you feel like chasing the woman down and cracking her on the knee with a shopping bag full of electrical appliances, just to see how she likes it.

****

You’re having a bad day. Along with the leg brace, you’re using your walking stick. You see some people walking towards you. They are spread out over the 4 metres of open space (12+ feet) that’s the walkway next to the shops, completely blocking it to anyone else. You stop, next to a shop window, close to it, waiting for the people to both see you, and move to one side.

They keep walking, looking everywhere but dead ahead, until one of them actually barges straight into you. It doesn’t knock you over, you were ready for it. They get stroppy with you and complain that you’ve hurt them when they bounced off your titanium leg brace. (Stroppy is angry.)

You point out they had plenty of space to walk through, they could see you clearly, you weren’t hiding, and point to your leg brace and stick. Some of us, you say, can’t get out of the way easily.  I’ve been standing here since you were over there, you say, and point some fifteen metres away (45+ feet) They seem surprised, both at where you appeared from (you being such a sprightly and fast-moving person), and that you didn’t get out their way if you saw them.

****

You’re waiting for a taxi you phoned for. You’re outside the shops, leaning on your walker. You have many problems, including being unable to walk unaided. The taxi driver pulls up behind you, and starts calling to you.

He gets out of his car and comes up, shouting and yelling. “What are you, deaf?” You hear him, finally. There are people all standing staring. “Yes,” you say, mortified, fighting back tears, “yes, I am. My hearing aid broke this morning.” The taxi driver looks embarrassed, mumbles something that might be an apology, and helps you into the car, folding your walker to go in the boot.

You want to tell him to sod off, but instead you decide getting home is more important. Your small revenge will be not tipping, and complaining to the taxi company. When you get home, with the door shut, then you let yourself cry.

****

What is it with humans? Can’t you put yourself in the other person’s shoes? Or in their orthotic brace? Have a bloody care – when something happens to you, and you’re not able to move as fast, or as surely, is that the only time you realise, gee, it’s a bit rough trying to get around with the other humans who think their needs take precedence over everyone else’s?

Can you imagine how fucking frustrating it is, when your body doesn’t do things as quickly or as well as you want it to?

I suppose not. However, you might want to remember, not all of us are crippled so badly that we can’t push you back when you shove us. Some of us studied martial arts, and can do things to you with our walking sticks you won’t believe.

So don’t mind me, and don’t be surprised when your car door gets dented if you park so i can’t get out of my car, and then expect me to wait while you go off and do your shopping.

This militant cripple has had enough.

NB – i don’t look crippled. Like most disabled people, i do my damnedest to hide how hard it is for me to look normal.
The above examples are all ones i witnessed or were related to me by the disabled people involved.

© https://stinginthetail.wordpress.com

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10 Reasons Not to Follow Me on Twitter

You see a lot of people begging you to follow them on Twitter, so they can get a bigger Follower list. You shouldn’t follow me. Not at all. I can hardly keep up with the Followers i have. I probably won’t follow you back, so don’t do it.

In fact, i bet i can think of ten more reasons why you shouldn’t follow me.

1. I’m not always on a lot every day, but i make up for absences with  a high typing speed. If you’re not following many people, you’ll get a wall of me. “Many” in this case means less than about three hundred very chatty people.

2. I’ll follow you back, then decide oops, you’re not for me after all, and unfollow. Unless you happen to try to Direct Message me (to send a DM, the other person has to be following you back) or use a program like Twitter Karma to show you who’s unfollowed you, you’ll never notice.

3. Sometimes i divest myself of followers in drug-induced frenzies housekeeping binges, by Blocking then Unblocking. This makes them unfollow me too, which i figure is fairer than just unfollowing, as i don’t really want you to follow me on Twitter. Once i did it to about 500 people, so don’t feel special don’t get paranoid.

4. I talk about my writing. A lot. Everyone on my twitter list gets to know the #amwriting hashtag, because i tweet to it usually a couple of times a day. (It’s a writers’ group on Twitter founded by @johannaharness, who’s a very nice person to follow, to find out more, click on link – opens in new window.)

5. I rant. Pretty much all the time. I shout about religion, feminism, humanism, politics, bigotry, getting older, um…  sorry ,what was i saying? Politically, I’m an anarchist monarchist, which means lots of shouting. I get to be queen, and you can do what you like. Unless i’m right there, and bossing you round, but i can’t do that to many people at a time. Not without a sound system.

6. I don’t get jokes, or sarcasm. Call it being blonde, autistic, whatever. Sometimes i do, but i fluff it reasonably often.

7. I’m vain and want you to pay attention to me. At the same time, just when you’re sure i’m the shallowest person on the planet, i’ll disconcertingly pay microscopic attention to you. Usually when you’re being light and flippant.  (See also .6)

8. I am evil, and regular readers will know i’m the ad hoc Antichrist. I have to fill in, seeing the real Antichrist met with an unfortunate accident and is in a coma. *Hides cosh behind back.* It’s nearly time for the Rapture. (see below)

9. Did i mention my book? I call it The Thing, but that’s because it’s a shorter title than than the real one. and i need a short version so i can earbash you about it on Twitter. (Twitter only allows 140 characters.) Not about buying it, that joy is still to come. You get to ride the creative process. Or me wasting time on Twitter when I should be writing. This is actually The Thing Mark II.

10. I’ve already forgotten why i’m doing this. (See 1.) (NOTE: that doesn’t make sense, because 1. was edited, and no longer includes the bit about how dizzy i am… *sighs*)

Despite the above advice, if you want to see what i’m shouting about now, to follow me on Twitter, (remembering that when the Rapture comes, you’ll be one of the ones that God’s Giant Faulty Vacuum Cleaner leaves behind), or perhaps if you’d like to block me in a pre-emptive act of self-defence to save your immortal soul…

it’s ~ @stinginthetail ~

© https://stinginthetail.wordpress.com/


I am shutting my eyes now…

This is going to be a ten minute rant. Well, less depending how many words we get to. My blog is most shamefully neglected *brushes away cobwebs* but that’s a good thing, because I’m in the middle of edits after the first outside read of The Thing. (For those who haven’t been paying attention, The Thing is my now-complete sci fi fantasy novel.)

So, the rant. Lordy, so much to bitch about, and so little time. I think I will focus on one thing. Tights are not pants. If the foot is in, you wear it with something covering the crotch. I do not want to see your genitals outlined in all their glory. Tights in this instance means what we Aussies call stockings and the UK call tights – anything one piece with the feet in, in various weights from sheer to knitted.

I am great believer in ‘every twat is beautiful’ but it doesn’t mean i want to see yours. I even saw a woman this week wearing a pair of the black tights with the white breathable crotch area. People were stopping to stare, and laugh. The woman wiggled along, no doubt thinking they were all looking at her cos she was hawt. Nobody looks hot wearing tights as pants – well, they might look lewd, but if you want to do porno, there are places for that, and it’s not where children or unconsenting adults can see you.

Then there were the group of young girls, who were wearing tights with the waist rolled down to nearly their pubic bones, a shirt tucked in, inside their g-strings underneath, and the g-string pulled up to show waist whale-tail. Ridiculous didn’t quite cover it. Again, people were stopping to laugh, and there were a number of men noting that you could actually see the colour of their undies AND every detail of their vulvas. Look at that chick, she’s got an outie!

Keep your vaginal lips to yourself, sugarpops – if i want to see them, i’ll go look at your page on one of those adult sites where all the men post their penises and the women, in increasing numbers, reduce themselves to a collection of flanges and pink bits. It’s like budgie-smugglers – those tight and tiny lycra swimming togs for blokes that show you whether he’s circumcised or not. So, where was i, penises and labia, um…. i think that’s covered the tights are not pants thing, and it’s been ten minutes.

I even edited out a side rant about Tony Abbott (our leader of the opposition) wearing budgie smugglers and making me want to wash my eyes with bleach. Having said that, if you’re on the beach, and a mad swimmer, or a lifesaver, then sure, I’m told they’re good to swim in.

Tights, however, are NEVER good to wear anywhere by themselves, except possibly in the bedroom when you tell your Mr to tear his way in. What, you’ve never done that? The ripping of the nylon is rather spiffy.

Pfft – you’ve had an extra four minutes. Time for me to go. My work here is done, and The Thing needs another hetero sex scene. Yeah, i put in a bunch of homo ones, and somehow edited all the hetero ones out. As Mr Whatsit said, i could have cornered the gay sci fi fantasy market.

  • On twitter, those who rant about tights not being pants do it under the hashtag #tightsarenotpants
  • If instead of laughing at that, you’d rather follow me – do so at – @stinginthetail
  • I was first awakened to the glory that is tightsarenotpants by @franksting – who is one of the best ranters in 140 characters on the planet, and a lovely bloke to follow.
  • @agent_x – who is likewise an excellent follow, showed me this – there are many of us, and we have press packs! http://www.tightsarenotpants.com/

© https://stinginthetail.wordpress.com