Viewing Disability Differently


It’s been a while since I’ve posted, so he’s a short video from UpWorthy that’ll leave a lasting impression. Enjoy!


ImageThe last few weeks have been emotional ones, having both highs and lows. Reading this, you might assume that I should be talking about roller coasters instead of board games. I’ll get to that in just a minute. Here’s the Cliff’s Notes of what’s happened in the past 2 weeks or so.

  • I spent four days in Disney World, getting to four out of five theme parks in that time. There were 2 rides on Space Mountain and a bunch of other attractions, a cream cheese-filled pretzel (so delicious!), lots of joking, lots of walking, lots of fun (after I got over being completely terrified), and some amount of sleep, thanks to a delayed flight.
  • While in Florida, I got rejected from a job I thought I had a very, very good shot at landing.
  • Two new freelance possibilities came up
  • One other freelance offer got revoked for reasons still undisclosed
  • An argument or two
  • A few great conversations
  • Another interview, which hopefully I’ll hear about soon

And then, last night, I played Settlers of Catan with a group of friends for the first time. At about 2:30 a.m. with the game nowhere near finished, I had to call it a night. Though the only thing I drank that night was chocolate milk and some grapefruit seltzer, the room started spinning, and it was time to go to bed. Just before a REM cycle started, everything from the past couple of week fit together in the hazy delirium of almost-sleep.

Read the rest of this entry »

ImageSo much news, so little time. Like last week, when I hoped to spread the word about Wheel New York, I’d like to take some time and let you know what’s out there in the world of disability-centric news. Here’s a few things worth reading — other than The D Card, of course. Read the rest of this entry »

ImageThis week, dear readers, I’d like to introduce you to Wheel New York. If you haven’t heard of it, that’s because it doesn’t exist — yet.

Wheel New York is an app that Jennifer Feinberg is working to create using the crowd-funding website Kickstarter. At the time of publication (don’t I sound official?), they have raised almost $13,000. They have 15 days to raise the rest of the money to reach their $35,000 goal. A quick quote from the Wheel New York fundraising page: “The app will allow users to utilize our location-based map to easily identify accessible locations and transit options. Users will be able to get real-time user-generated accessibility ratings, tips and suggestions.”

Naturally, I was intrigued. Using the superpowers of the internet, I got in touch with Jennifer Feinberg, and she answered a few quick questions via e-mail. Here are the highlights of what I found out.

Read the rest of this entry »

ImageRecently, I’ve been watching a lot of the past seasons of Survivor. I can’t believe I didn’t get into it until now. In watching the show, I’ve learned a few things. The first being that, however much I love watching the show, I wouldn’t do too well as a participant. The second obvious truth I’ve learned is that apparently I have a huge crush on Jeff Probst. You can’t really blame me, can you?

After watching season 6, which took place in the Amazon jungle, I knew I had to write about Christy Smith, Survivor’s first — and only, as of now — deaf contestant. She lasted 33 out of 39 days, and was voted out not for her disability, but for her indecision. At the reunion episode, she had an exchange with Jeff Probst that went like this:

Jeff – “What was it like playing the game with 15 hearing people who maybe don’t care if you can hear or not?”

Christy – “It was the toughest game I’ve ever played. It was the biggest challenge, but I improved, I learned, and I did awesome.”

Jeff – “Early on, I was even reminding you that I felt you were acting as though you felt everyone should help you and that maybe that wasn’t going to happen. At what point did you decide, ya know what? This is a game, and I’m going to have to play the game and not worry about whether I hear or whether I’m deaf or whatever?”

Christy – “It was in the beginning…and I just realized…if I keep pursuing this as, like, me having a problem with being deaf and trying to work with everyone, then I’ll get voted out, so I couldn’t complain. So I decided, ok, fine, I’m not deaf, I’m playing the game. Let me play and see how far I can go.”

I loved her throughout the show — she was capable in challenges, funny, and candid with the camera, what’s not to love? — but never more than at that moment. Here’s why. Read the rest of this entry »

resist_changeFair warning — this post is not disability related.

I tried. I really did. I wanted to say something profound and original about disabilities, and I looked for inspiration anywhere I could think of — my personal life, my friends’ personal lives (sorry, guys!), the news, movies, music, books — but I was thinking about other things.

I was thinking about my cousin’s wedding, and how happy I was for him and his new wife. I was thinking about my job search. I was thinking about how Fall is my favorite season and how much I love pumpkin-flavored anything. I thought a lot about popcorn, actually — what the exact temperature was for the most amount of popped kernels, why nobody tries to pop other kinds of seeds, if popcorn would eventually take off the way that cupcakes have. Seriously. This is the stuff that I think about sometimes.

I promised you all that this last relaunch of The D Card would be, at times, more personal. But what happens when, personally, one’s disability isn’t the main concern anymore? I’m sure it will be a topic again, some other week — maybe even this coming Sunday — but right now, I’m thinking about change. Please bear with me, and we’ll return to your regularly scheduled disability-focused programming soon.  Read the rest of this entry »

ImageHere’s a round-up of kid-centered, d-card-friendly stories in the media that are worth reading. They’re a nice reminder that for every story about children with disabilities being bullied and ostracized, there are stories of people who treat others with hope and compassion. Read the rest of this entry »

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