Wednesday, July 17, 2013

"Still Crazy After All These Years"

from the DailyMailOnline
You don't have to be a half bubble off plump to use a wheelchair, but it helps. 

What I know works is a sardonic sense of humor, a sense of fatalism, an existential appreciation of life, a dash of Buddhist or Christian mysticism all help.

That said, I think you have to be a little bit wacked to want to use a wheelchair—to want to be disabled because it fits some concept of self. Here's the story that brought that to mind.

It's good she's getting a little help, this wanna-be, and by that I mean psychiatric help rather than the help of whatever doctor the story mentioned—the so-called doctor that was going to make her dream (nightmare!) possible by severing her spinal cord.

Readers go on to learn she enjoys "the excitement of downhill skiing and ... Doing any activity that brings a chance of me becoming paraplegic ... "

Ah, so. A nice clean paraplegic injury, but no mention of the surgeries, the months in hospital, the long rehabilitation. Catheters. Enemas. Pressure sores. And it's odd to there's no speculation on her part about doing two or three things I can think of off the top of my head—and won't mention here—that could cause paraplegia in a fraction of a second.

And then there's this:
Now, Chloe spends most of her time in a wheelchair, but has to get out for various household tasks and walk down the steps to her car. 
I can't afford to convert my home for disabled access so I just use the chair as much as I can, she said.
Well, now. That's the reality. She wants the real experience of being mobility impaired, the attention (which she's welcome to), and perhaps even, dare I say it, the compassion/pity/sympathy too often ladled out by those who know no other way to react. 

But there she has the reality of using a wheelchair. Steps. Inaccessible counters. Inaccessible bathrooms. Things out of reach. Doors unreachable or unclosable.  

I have no business lampooning this twisted person. She's getting what she wants: attention. And I'm giving her more.

There's been some discussion lately in a post-polio group about "devotees," folks who have a fetish, perhaps even a sexual fetish, involving people with disabilities. I can almost wrap my mind around a devotee, and I'd have no problem with full comprehension if, for example, I had a devotee who looked like, oh, Lee Remick or Elizabeth Montgomery, which relates to my teenage fantasies.

What I can't comprehend, however, is the dark inspiration that might drive a human being to want to be paralyzed. That's why I hope these folks are sad example—Look at me ... please, please, look at me—of rotten parenting, or neurological miswiring. I simply wish they'd keep their problems to themselves.
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