News from the Sitting Position

Thursday, October 7, 2004

Seeing Axis (a happy column finally!)

Tonight, instead spending the evening with my computer and the TV or toiling in Mary Frances house, I put on a “going out outfit” (neat crimson sweater, black turtleneck, black velvet pants, black socks and shoes) and joined a group going to see Axis Dance Company at the UMass Fine Arts Center (one of the premier integrated dance companies- meaning containing dancers with various disabilities and dancers who are non-disabled- in the country), which is based in Oakland, CA. It was amazing to see... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, September 24, 2004

In Memoriam: Mary Frances Platt

On September 15 th, Mary Frances Platt (my friend, mentor, and fellow disability rights activist) died, but I was unaware of her passing until a few hours ago. We lived within a mile of each other and shared a wonderful, yet complicated, relationship, but hadn’t seen each other in a few months. With a presence twice the size of her 400 pound body and a temper to match her (now graying) red hair, Mary Frances took crap from no one, including me. In fact, the 50 year old sometimes acted (or wanted... Sign in to see full entry.

Monday, September 20, 2004

In Memoriam: Mattie Stepanek (1990-2003)

Obsessed, I suppose, with my own illness, recovery, and activities, I failed to realize that poet, peacemaker, and advocate Mattie Stepanek passed from the world this summer until I saw a tribute on Oprah today. Mere weeks away from his 14 th birthday when he died on June 22nd, Mattie was a lively, active, opinionated young man with a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy. In his short life, Mattie authored several books, appeared on the Oprah Show, met former President Jimmy Carter, and was a three... Sign in to see full entry.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Report on the 1st Annual American with Disabilities Convention

I left for the First Annual Americans with Disabilities Convention at around 3:30 East Coast time Friday, with Megan ( an emergency last minute fill in PCA ) in tow. Since we’d missed the train, I’d canceled the van, and we both wanted to come back as early as possible, we opted to take her car. Since my power chair couldn’t fit in the car ( it doesn’t fold ), I had to take the manual wheelchair that I used in Japan because my regular manual chair is unpadded and uncomfortable, plus it doesn’t... Sign in to see full entry.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Canada Wrap-up

I woke up yesterday at 6:00 AM and didn’t get to bed until 1:30 AM this morning. First, we forgot Diakwe’s bag at the hotel. Then we were put on a flight that was one hour later than were told it was. Then we missed our connection because people couldn’t get me off the plane in a timely fashion. Daikwe almost caused an international incident by jumping off the plane to change our flight without going through customs, but I stopped her in time. Then we stood in line for hours waiting to be... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Greetings fron Canada: Installment 3

The last day of the conference was happy and sad at once. It's good to be going home but I'll miss all my new and old friends as well as just being around disabiled people in general, because there's not a lot of community in Massachesetts. Nadina says Alexander is mad at me because I didn't write him a goodbye note, but I left his apartment thinking his wife thought we were having an affair. So I didn't want to make that any worse. I guess I'll do some ego stroking when I get back to NYC... Sign in to see full entry.

Thursday, September 9, 2004

Grettings from Canada- Installment 2

Today was a busy day full of workshops and learning. I don't think I can learn anymore or my brain will explode. The first thing I did this morning was sit for 2 hours learning all about how a UN convention is formulated. I learned that UN conventions are actually binding if a country ratifies it, which I didn't know. And that there could be a disability convention as soon as Fall 2005. There were some arguments on whether to include a special article on women, but no real conclusion was... Sign in to see full entry.

Wednesday, September 8, 2004

Greetings from Canada Installment 1

Hello from Canada where I actually made it through the border. This is my third day in Canada. Two days ago I arrived with my last minute PCA, Daikwe, who is very nice. I couldn't even get out of the airport without having a diaster. My on/off switch for my chair broke, and they barely let me on the plane because my chair wouldn't turn off. And that's apparently a safety violation. The white guy who was in charge of the process was a real blowhard and wanted the plane to leave without me, but... Sign in to see full entry.

Monday, August 30, 2004

RNC Day 2 and Homecoming

Got up a little later than I wanted Sunday, put on my red and yellow ADAPT shirt, and headed out the door to the disability rights mini-march which was gathering at 10 AM to join the big anti-RNC march that was starting at noon. Lindsey and I decided to walk to our meeting site because we figured it would be faster than waiting for a bus and I could get some poster board to make a sign if we saw a place on the way. We passed Gray’s Papaya Hotdogs (my favorite NYC restaurant) and ran into one of... Sign in to see full entry.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

RNC Arrival and Day 1

Greetings from the Counter-convention/RNC Not Welcome. Traveled all of yesterday from about 2:00; got to my host Alexander's house around 11:00. Lindsey (the women helping me who I found on Craigslist at the last minute is super nice, as is her girlfriend, she was sort of stressed by all the newness of PCAdom at first but she seems to be getting the hang of it). Alexander's house is very nice and it's kind of fun to pretend it's my apartment because he's not here. He doesn't even know me and he... Sign in to see full entry.

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