Friday, May 27, 2022

scratching and crawling my way out of a really deep hole

In 2016 I came back from being paralyzed 2 years earlier and finished the Brooklyn half marathon in 4 hours and 41 minutes.Earlier this week I finished that same race and 3 hours and 31 minutes. I honestly don't think that progress is such a big deal. To me it was inevitable. 

It was about 8 years ago this week that I moved into a regular hospital from the intensive care unit.. I met with a shrink a few times and we talked about what was important to me.. I wanted to be a good role model for my kids and she helped me work out a new way to do that.... I continually now want to show them that sometimes you have to crawl out of a big hole.

image description of above: A two-frame cartoon. In the first frame it shows a person on top of a mountain screaming I did it. In the second frame there's a person crawling out of a ditch saying I did it and there's a stick figure of a person falling into the ditch as well. Above the first frame it says the strength we're tought to admire Above the second frame it says the strength we should also admire.

Running Was easy this year because this is the hard thing that I did. 

image description of the photo to the left.There's two pictures of me... One is of me wearing my medal from the Brooklyn half marathon in 2016. I was morbidly obese. In the other picture I am approaching the finish line of the 2022 Brooklyn half marathon. 65 lbs lighter.

In the past 6 years I've changed from pvc ankle foot orthotics to carbon fiber. I've also had five surgeries on my hands to improve the function.

Guillain-Barre syndrome might have knocked me into a hole but I can choose not to stay there.

Monday, May 2, 2022

Yes, I have a picture of my daughter

Recently, I was hanging out with a bunch of other grown-ups and we started talking about our kids.We started showing off pictures.What it was my turn, I opened my phone and showed a new picture of my son and his girlfriend and then a picture of my daughter and her girlfriend. I then hardly noticed that one of my new friends stepped away from the crowd. Later that person came over to me, and in a quiet voice said ,"When I was a little younger than your daughter I came out, and my parents made me leave the house....Things got a little better didn't they."

Yep to me it's as seamless as just another dad joke. 

Yeah, People ask if my twins are identical and I say no they are boy and a girl. And then they say well are they identical in personality. I say absolutely not. My son is a nerdy scientist who enjoys playing video games with his friends into the middle of the night and my daughter a politically active fashionista artist, They couldn't be more different. But they both like girls. 

So below is the entire text from my daughter's thesis statement. Click here for a link to a photos of the show mostly taken by my friend Larry.


to the left is a great painting of my daughter, Sabrina and her girlfriend, Julia.


and not for nothing but this is the second time Sabrina was a guest on my  blog. Back then I wasn't allowed to say her name or show her picture



Sabrina Ring’s Thesis Statement

Candidate for BFA Drawing, Pratt Institute, Spring 2022


My work celebrates sexual and gender eurphoria through queer imagery, community, drag and self expression. I am doing this through drawing as well as wearable, community based art.

I have been exploring the combination of early 2000's little girls’ media along with the queer and trans experience.  Little girls' media, toys, like Barbie and Disney princesses, as well as cartoons like Strawberry Shortcake and Spongebob. As well as iconic, fashion brands like Limited Too and The Children's Place, taught the children who were assigned female at birth of my generation about heteronormative gender roles and eurocentric beauty standards, all wrapped up in a colorful, cute pink glitter aesthetic. This is very confusing and challenging for young queer and trans people, who will never meet these standards. I reference this era of media though bright rainbow color, early 2000’s cartoon characters, peace signs, flowers, smiley faces and hearts, little girls plastic charms and beads, sparkles and more. Mixing this aesthetic with queer imagery is empowering, liberating and an act of resistance to these gender roles.


Drag to me is expressing a person’s gender and sexuality to the fullest extent. This includes performance in a queer nighlife setting, where you would expect to see drag, as well daily life. It varies from elaborate costumes to a T-shirt. Whatever is the truest expression of a queer person’s gender and sexuality, anytime and anywhere. It is all about the fantasy. Living your dreams by dressing up as exactly who you want to be, even if that is not really possible in a society that is patriarchal, heteronormative, and runs on white supremacy. This liberates the person in drag and helps other queer people feel comfortable celebrating their own identity, being unapologetically visibly queer. Expressing your true self no matter where and when is a small act of protest against heteronormative society.This idea is from the Ballroom scene that started in the 1960’s in Harlem and The Bronx, by the Black queer community*.

*Read more about this in And The Category Is…:Inside New York’s Vougue, House, and Ballroom Community by Ricky Tucker


Related to this idea is the stereotypical, hyperfeminine aesthetic of my work. I am pushing against the idea that queer women have to present as masculine or non binary peoplehave to present as androgynous. I thought lesbians had to be butch and only gay guys could be feminine, because I was exposed to that narrow representation in the media. Dedication to this feminine aesthetic and way of self expression for femme lesbians and non-binary femmes is a way to show that its ok to present your gender other than how straight society expects you to, and is an act of protest against this.


Chalk pastel drawings and oil paintings have imagery that include portraits, figures and still lives. With these drawings I want to elevate queer femme lifestyle to a traditional format of representational portraits. Celebrating and honoring it by putting it into the context of fine art that historically excludes and oppresses queer and trans people. Male artists are encouraged to exploit and sexualize AFAB* bodies through figure painting, For example, the reclining Venus and Odalisque paintings that you see from the renaissance to the 19th century.**

Making still lives with sex toys and stuffed animals instead of bowls of fruit and wine glasses, and boldy representing my sexuality through nude figure drawings is an act of protest against the exclusionaty tradition of art history, as well as a celebration of queer sexuality. 

*assigned female at birth

** read more about this in Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists? by Linda Nochlin


Another part of my practice is centered around making wearable art for myself and the queer comunity, as a reference to drag. This includes hand embroidered and beaded clothing as well as silkscreened clothing and handmade jewelry. These are produced and sold, online as well as at queer-centered flea markets. All the funds are given to mutual aid supporting queer BIPOC. 

When people buy my clothing and jewelry they walk around wearing hand-crafted items that aggressively, unapologetically celebrate alternative queer and trans femme lifestyles. Showing everyone that its is OK to express your true gender and sexual identity. As well as monetarily supporting the members of our community who face oppression on multiple levels. The work has to support and uplift the community in a tangible way, not just illustrate it. By doing this I want to encourage people, especially the pratt community, what they could do to support people with less privilege then them. Redistribute your wealth! Give money to mutual aid and directly to queer BIPOC.


Lastly, my art is for queer people. I made the Go Home Breeders mixed media piece in order to contextualize my work for the cisgender straight white people in the Pratt community. To spell it out, GO HOME! This party is not for you, your feedback and opinion in the work is not wanted or helpful. Look, learn about my community, and respect our lifestyle that I have represented through my work. Consider and reflect on your privileges. Feel uncomfortable. And then give your time and money to support people who have less opportunities then you.

 


Mutual Aid Organizations to contribute to:

East Village Mutual Aid

Bed Suy Strong

The Gym

Bushwick Ayuda Mutua

Covid Bail Out NYC

The Okra Project

WSP Mutual Aid

Harlem Mutual Aid

Black Trans Liberation

QTMA.PVD

Brave Space Alliance



Thursday, April 21, 2022

What do statues of Nathan Hale and Christopher Columbus have in common? Nothing

This morning I spent about an hour hanging out on the steps of City Hall holding a sign while other people took a few minutes to yell at the government. (Actually most of the speakers were elected officials, and I don't know why they were yelling, they should be actually inside city hall doing something. But that is really a completely different topic.)

Well waiting to go through security so I could be near the steps of City Hall I realized that before 9/11 you can just go there and eat your lunch but now you need an appointment and a reason. I was kind of excited to snap this picture of the statue of Nathan Hale. Cuz I figured it was such a nice day I would walk over the Brooklyn Bridge and take a picture of Christopher Columbus on the other side in front of Brooklyn's Borough Hall

It was a nice walk.I think it's been the first time I've been up there since the cyclists got their own lane down on the roadway. The oblivious tourists up there had no idea what it was like when they were squeezed into half of that wooden sidewalk. I also noticed for the first time that the word Watchtower was replaced by welcome on top of the buildings in Dumbo. No more religious fanatics owning all that real estate and not paying taxes! And I also stopped to pee in the bathroom In Cadmen Plaza. It's a truly unremarkable bathroom but the fact that there is a payphone in the building that still has a rotary and a 212 area code is outstanding.

Oh, so you want to know what these statues have in common.They were made by different artists. But neither of these artists nor anyone ever recorded what Christopher Columbus or Nathan Hale actually looked like. So the artists got to make them look like whatever they wanted. Or maybe they were self-portraits. 


So to the left is a crappy picture I took of the statue of Nathan Hale.I could describe the image as a statue of a white guy dressed in what people wore in 1776.The statue is green and it is on a concrete platform. Behind the statue are lower Manhattan buildings. You could read more about the statue here as well as seeing more pictures. "Since no life portraits of the patriot spy exist, Frederick Macmonnies’s work offers a romantic interpretation of Hale"

To the right is the crappy picture I took of Christopher Columbus's statue in Brooklyn. It looks like a statue of a guy wearing a skirt.  Here is the official parks department story about the statue and its history. The pictures in that website aren't much better than mine. And here are different ways people like to draw Christopher Columbus. And by the way there are police barricades surrounding this statue and the other one in Central Park because Christopher Columbus was not such a nice guy

Friday, April 8, 2022

Why is the MTA punishing people for being disabled? [Actually, you can fight City Hall, (I mean the state house)]


So in September of 2018 I was going to publish this blog post. I left at hanging aroun, just waiting to see if I needed a little bit more leverage and getting things fixed. I did not.I went to MTA board meetings and complained about the fact that after losing your accessory Metrocard you had to go to the post office and get a money order to get it replaced. Getting a money order was punishment enough. But if you lost your metro card three times you'd have to wait 120 days to get a new Metrocard. 

After I use my 2 minutes of yelling time to complain about all the things I listed below, one of the head honchos from customer service took me out of the room and asked me to explain more about what my problem was and of the head honchos from customer service took me out of the room and asked me to explain more about what my problem was. He took me seriously and after a few months told me they were going to change the policy. 

And just talking about it we both realized that the punitive part of getting a new card made sense when they first gave out cards to people with disabilities so they can ride the subway and take buses for free.Back in the '80s and '90s these werecardboard cards. That can be used by anyone because all you had to do was wave it at the bus operator or token clerk and they would let you ride. But now we use MetroCards with electronics on them and they're disactivated when you report them lost. But the policy never changed. They want to discourage people from losing them and were afraid of fraud because the old one would work forever But now the old one is instantly deactivated when you report it lost.

Over the past couple of years I have a few friends that had lost their metro cards and they asked me what to do. Not knowing that I was very intimately involved in the procedure of what to do. I told him just to call the phone number for accessory ride and ask them what to. The answer was much better than my old answer. It was simply "We will mail you a new one."

And that's what happened to me last week. I didn't actually lose my card but it started to wear out. When I called customer service they told me to mail it back and they would send me a new one. I asked them what would happen if I just said I lost it. They said they'd start the process that day to mail me a new one and not wait for the broken one to come in the mail. So I said I needed to correct myself I couldn't find my card even though I knew it was damaged. That was 8 days ago and I got my new card in the mail today. I didn't have to wait 180 days and I didn't have to go to the post office and get a money order.


The blog post below was in draft mode since September of 2018.I never had a start I changed.org petition and I never even had to publish this post to threaten the change.org petition.

Also because of my persistence back in 2018 I was approached by the president of Disabled In Action. She invited me to some meetings and now I'm a board member of that organization.


.........................................................................................................
Placeholder for link to change.org petition

I'm definitely pausing the distribution of any online petition at this point. After testifying before the MTA board yesterday the feedback I got was that this is going to be fixed.A high-level mucky muck came over to me right after I spoke to get more details about this issue so "it can be corrected". Also, on my way out of the building and assisted to a mucky muck told me that while I was speaking a lot of people in the room were already texting each other on how to fix this problem. (9/25/2018)


If you live in New York City you must be pretty familiar with Access A Ride Vans. Those big white and blue Ford diesel vans that drive people with disabilities  all over the city. These vas basically exist because years ago the disabled people of New York sued the MTA because the world's largest subway system was built a long time ago and has a lot of stairs. It was cheaper to give disabled people door-to-door transportation then to make the system work for all the cities residents. With access ride disabled people are able to be picked up and brought anywhere in New York City for $2.75. That's the same price as a subway fare, but since we can't get on the subway we get to do it in a van.

Before I became disabled all I knew about it was that it's a thing that everyone who uses it complains about. Once I became dependent on it I honestly felt it wasn't that bad. Don't get me wrong, it has an enormous room for improvement but once I figured out how it works it wasn't the end of the world. In any case I became part of a pilot program where I was able to use the Curb app and make a yellow or green taxi appear within minutes and only pay $2.75.

All access ride customers are issued in access ride MetroCard it's good for four trips a day and no fare is collected. Here are all the details on that. It doesn't say why New Yorkers with a disability are issued a MetroCard that gives them free trips so it just leads me to speculate.

  • People with disabilities have good days and bad days and on a good day most of us would rather actually take the train or the bus. The MTA is helping some disabled people transition back to "normal".
AND /OR
  • Driving people around door-to-door in vans is very expensive. The MTA saves a lot of money when disabled people get on a bus or subway.

Either way I very happy to take mass transit on the days I've been able to climb stairs. Last year I misplaced my card (by "misplacing"I mean I thought I lost it, but eventually it turned up) and after I thought I looked everywhere I called the MTA and ask for replacement. They told me to get a postal money order for $10 and send and mail it to them. I thought this was a little archaic, but many of the other people who use access ride might not feel comfortable paying online, so I went down to the post office.. I got my card within a reasonable amount of time and moved on with life. Unfortunately, in the past year this happen two more times. The third time it happened I actually found my MetroCard before they sent me my replacement. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it still worked and as soon as I got off the subway I called the MTA and told them I found it. They told me I was lucky because if it would have been of turned it off I would've had to wait four months for the new one to be sent to me. I thought this was a bizarre rule but I was happy that I dodged the bullet. However, two days later my card stop working. I called access ride and they said no matter what anyone said as soon as I said it was lost it needed to be turned off and could not be turned back on I had to wait 120 days. Below, is the rule that explains that.


Q. Where do I report a lost or stolen AAR MetroCard?

A. Immediately report a lost or stolen card by calling AAR at 1-877-337-2017.  NYC Transit will reissue lost or stolen  cards at its discretion after receipt of a $10 replacement fee.  After replacement of three or more lost or stolen cards, NYCT will impose a 120-day waiting period before reissuing another card.  This waiting period will also be imposed for the replacement of any subsequent cards.  Payments must be made in the form of a USPS® Postal Money Order payable to MTA New York City Transit and mailed to NYC Transit, Paratransit Division, Eligibility Unit, 130 Livingston Street, Brooklyn NY 11201.

I complained up and down the line that I felt I was being penalized for losing things.If I'm paying for the replacement why do I have to wait?  I honestly gave up on having an exception made for me because I was okay waiting 120 days. I was able to use the Curb app and when I'm able to bus drivers always let me on the bus because the card I have is not expired. Also, the staff at subway stations (including the police) open the gate for me when I show them my valid card. So, and by complaining about this policy I made it clear I wasn't asking for an exception I was asking for a change in the rule because not everyone who is disabled is going to feel that they could ask for help from the bus drivers and the subway staff to aid them in transportation needs. I really got nowhere with this complaining. Everyone thought I was trying to ask for an exception and reminding me that these were the rules.

I also lost my drivers license. Not that I drive anymore, but it was the enhanced federal version of the New York State drivers license. It was the type of card that can get me across the border into Canada or onto an airplane. I called the DMV and all I had to do was give them my credit card number and let them take about $21 for my account and I got a new one mailed to me. No trip to the post office no waiting 120 days if I lost it more than twice.

Then it occurred to me that  friend uses her credit card to refill her MetroCard at a vending machine and so do hundreds of thousands of people on a regular basis. If she were to lose her card she can report it to the MTA and get a prorated refund. Here's the website  it doesn't say anything about paying for replacement card or waiting 120 days if it happens more than twice.The first time you make a claim there is no charge. The second time there is a five dollar charge. The MTA will only efix your card twice a year.

And then there's the program where your credit card is automatically billed to your MetroCard works forever (or until the piece of plastic expires and then they send you a new one). Below are the details on that.


Q. What if my EasyPayXpress MetroCard is lost or stolen? 

A. You must immediately report your EasyPay MetroCard lost or stolen online at www.easypaymetrocard.com or call our Automated Telephone Service 24/7 at1-877-323-RIDE (7433). We will deactivate your card to protect you from unauthorized charges. Failure to report your MetroCard lost or stolen may result in unauthorized fares which you will be responsible for. You will not be liable for unauthorized EasyPay MetroCard use that occurs AFTER you notify EasyPay MetroCard, electronically, verbally or in writing, of non-operation, loss, theft or possible unauthorized use. We will send you a replacement card in the mail. Please allow 15 business days for processing.  
So here's the thing. Speaking for myself I can definitely say that people with disabilities are more likely to lose things than the general population. My disability affects my hands the most. I often drop things without knowing it. I've been hanging out with a lot of people with disabilities lately visual impairments and other cognitive issues. I'm pretty sure researches been done the disabled people or more likely to misplace things than the general population.

So why is there a trip to the post office and a 120 waiting period when a person with a disability needs to replace their MetroCard and all a person in the general population has to do is pick up the phone?

Thursday, March 31, 2022

images of my one day trip to Albany

This morning I made a one-day trip up to Albany. As is my right I wanted to take some time and yell at my government.This morning's yelling was about trying to keep people out of nursing homes and eventually getting sick and dying. But this blog post is not really about that. It's about the things I saw..

Before I got on Amtrak I got to go into the new Moynihan Hall. It is the new western extension of Penn Station. It is brand new and to see some great pictures of it click this. I also rode the Amtrak from New York City to Albany. It is arguably one of the most picturesque railroad trips you can make.For virtually the whole ride you are right up against the Hudson River. On my ride home I had a 200 mile view of the sun setting. I even got to see West Point. Click here for a video of what my trip was like. 

Most of the rally was held outdoors in Empire State Plaza. I've only been to Albany a few times and every time I go I'm reminded it is the bleakest place I've ever been to. But after one spends some time In the architectural heart of Albany, one realizes it's more than just bleak. One of the people I was with said it was Soviet architecture. But when I looked at it I thought it was more Romulan. Here are some great photographs.

We actually got inside of the capital and we're able to make some noise.We all got in through different entrances and had to go into the building on different routes but we would told to meet in the war room. I thought the war room was analogy for something, a place where we would discuss our strategy. It was actually a room called The Wall Room. It was a room full of pictures and art depicting war and violence and warriors Here are some more great pictures

But, and I know you've been waiting for it I did take one actual photograph. Between the Amtrak station in Rensselaer and the bus stop where we waited for the bus to go to Albany There was an old building that looks like it used to be a firehouse and now it was converted into a restaurant. 


From a distance it looked like another bleak Albany building. But the words on top really made me happy.

It Says E.F. HART HOSE, But when I looked at it quick I thought it said eFart House. 

After seeing a sign on a building that said eFart House I know I was going to have a good day.


Monday, March 21, 2022

Overheard at the Start of the NYC Marathon Tune Up (updated 14 years later)

So I wrote the blog post below 14 years ago. I was a different person in many dimensions back then. 

But, yesterday for the first time in 16 years I paid for the New York City Half Marathon.It is a new course and very photogenic. A lot of people were taking a lot of pictures along the way. I didn't need those touristy pictures.I know what the Brooklyn Bridge looks like from the Manhattan Bridge. And if I want to picture of Time Square I can buy a postcard. 

But along the way I wanted one picture. 

8 years ago I was in NYU Langone Hospital.I wanted a picture of the hospital window I looked out of at the FDR Highway. From the room where I had a weird medical procedure called plasma exchange, and off-label non-FDA approved chemotherapy. I looked out at the East River and the FDR Highway a lot.I just
wanted a picture of me looking back at that window. And Josh took the picture before I got a chance to pose and it came out better than I even thought it would. Because I'm just running by. 

Yeah,Here's the other picture.Both of us with our medals.Josh didn't pay for his race, but that doesn't mean he ran for free. He was working very hard.








And by the way, here is continuing evidence that GPS devices are useless in the canyons of cities  

This was originally published in September of 2008...........

My name was changed to protect the innocent Person #1: It is kinda humid today just like the Nike Half Marathon in August Person #2: Yea, I did that, but I did not want to pay $75 to be in a Nike commercial, I just started in the back and had a good time. Person #3: Me too, I did not pay and I even got a medal. Person #2: I got 2 medals and sold them both on EBay. Cheers and laughs from the rest of crowd! Race Starts...

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Some things I recently saw


Lately, I've been spending a lot of time in Downtown Brooklyn..... Fulton Street near Hoyt St. For a long time Brooklyn Heights Fulton Street would be thought of as a place that has always been in need of gentrification . It was one of the first streets to be close to traffic so people could shop on it. But even then it's  still considered an area in need of development. 



I don't think this sign on the front of the hot dog stand makes it more welcoming


This sign above the hot dog stand explains everything


The future is right next door . Here's a picture of the backyard of 11 Hoyt Street as seen from the 5th floor of the building across the street. 
I guess the wealthy people who move to Brooklyn are going to like the concept of a backyard better than actual backyard. This won't give them any sense of neighborhood and is marketed as a place where they could not interact with the community. 

I don't think these people are going to be looking for a fried chicken sandwich.

I don't know, 30 years ago I moved into a neighborhood and was part of the gentrification process. I think I did it a little more slowly
Speaking of slower gentrification . Last week I helped my oldest child move into their new apartment.The real estate people call it East Williamsburg. I just call it Bushwick .Either way the friendly motorcycle gang down the block didn't seem to care about anything . Nierher did the local wildlife. But I did appreciate the honesty on the sign on the side of the building.
So looking back at my youth I think I'd rather live In a building that has a stoop like this then one that has a website like 11 Hoyt Street.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

"Hi Mike"

It was kind of wet and snowy this morning and my plan was to take a car down to my gym and run 10 miles .Yeah, I'm lucky enough to be a member of the Park Slope Armory YMCA .(I am also lucky enough to be in the accessoride on demand program so I can travel like an adult. Spontaneously). There's a 200 m track there.

On the ride there I saw that the conditions would have been perfect for running. The ground was wet. But there was a wet snowfall accumulating on every surface except the roadways and sidewalks. It was beautiful. I got to the gym and decided I would warm up a little and head back out the door to Prospect Park. Just for a little bit in my shorts and hoodie. I wanted to show GBS it didn't totally break me . On my way to the park I was contemplating this blog post. It was going to be really negative and dark . About how I still had a little bit of me left . Because I love running in the snow .

I got to the park and heard two words that completely changed my mindset. "Hi Mike", I recognized the voice instantly It was one of my old long-term friends from the running world. She said hello to me so naturally like it was the place I was supposed to be at that time. She greeted me like it was inevitable that she'd meet me in the park on our snowy day. I replied to her that I was only running about 50 ft in the park because I just wanted get a slice on the snowy park.... That I was on my way back to the gym. Her reply was simple."Of course!".

"Of course", But sometimes  I guess I need a reminder . I don't have to define myself As someone who's recovering from a terrible illness.  I'm just another runner in the park. "Of course!".

image description: a selfie I took of myself
in Prospect Park where I belong
wth a little bit of snow accumulating
 on my shoulders and hat.

Anyway, I dashed back to the park slope armory and put my hat and sweatshirt in the locker I did the 10 mi I was planning to do on the track.Next week I'm planning on running a 10 mile race outside on the hills in the cold and I'd like to break 3 hours So I figured I'd see if I can break 3 hours today in better circumstances. I started my Timex when I got onto the track And it helped me count the 80 laps. When I was done it took me exactly 2 hours and 59 minutes.

So below is the Strava picture of my run. Please ignore the distances it says because Stava thinks the satellites collect accurately when I'm indoors and running on a 200 m track. It does neither



And of course since I was running with a camera in my pocket I had to take this picture
Image Description: an  older TV on the sidewalk covered in snow with a bumper sticker across the front that says" We used to watch everything together"


Thursday, February 3, 2022

You don't have to be abilist


Every morning with my morning coffee I sit down and fill out surveys to make a couple of bucks. (I make at least $5 a day and sometimes over $100. If you want more information about how to do that contact me and I'll get a commission if you start doing it. But this blog is not about that.)

A very common question they ask in the beginning of the survey is employment status. Sometimes it's used to screen people out because they don't want people who work in a certain field . But more often than not it's used to sort people into groups .

To the left is a screenshot of that question. Please notice on top the little red dot that indicates that you have to select one answer .  At first I was going to check the box that said self-employed part-time because while I was filling out this survey I was working. They are paying me to fill out the survey. But I went down to the bottom and click the box that said disabled. Because I  identify as a disabled person.





Then I went to click the other box that says employed part time. And low and behold it unchecked the box that said disabled . Can't I be both ! What makes them  think disabled people can't work. 

Honestly, What does my disability have to do with my work status.

I'm thinking about this more I'm wondering If we were in a different time in the United States and they edited a check box on the bottom thhat said "colored" as an employment status . I wonder how African American people would feel when they were filling out the survey . 

Or what if there was a box that simply said woman So they would figure that a woman wasn't  getting paid at the same rate as a man. They can do that now .

Disability is not an employment status. It's a physical condition or or an identity. So dear survey people: If you want to know if someone is not working because they're disabled ,say that. But please do not assume that disabled people are not able to work.



I just started another survey and this came up. I'm pointing it out just to show that it's typical that you can choose disabled OR working. Please look also that you can choose one gender I always assume that transgender people were male or female Shouldn't that also be too different questions .But that's a different story.

And yeah I wasn't born on April Fool's Day. These people don't deserve the truth








I'm updating this the next day and excited to report that I was able to click these two boxes on this survey .





But then when I hit enter it told me I wasn't allowed






Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Some nice things I saw in the past week

 I've been a little recalcitrant in my blogging responsibilities lately, so I'll put a few pictures up here.


Last week I went to my optometrist and his office is so crowded with art that you have to be careful when you take a your coat, otherwise you might not go over some art. 

The picture to the right sits in his waiting room and I like sitting across from it.  He also has a picture of himself standing next to a teenage mutant Ninja Turtle .


Last week I had one of my many continuing physical therapy appointments. I took this picture from the bus On 42nd Street and  On the way back I walk so I can get better pictures

It's a use of public space to show off the art of Devin Rodriguez






A block away from those portraits is the Daily News building. In a different multiverse it was known as the Daily Planet Building. But I think this globe was there first.It is also the same building that houses WPIX TV . 

A very long time ago my grandfather worked there . He edited the televised news shows. Before he did that he edited the news reels.Probably about 45 or 50 years ago I visited him at work. I remember I got to sit in the anchor chair for the news And afterwards we went to the automat for lunch

I'm also pretty pleased with myself for being able to take that picture on a cold day through a window



Then there's this giant mural as seen from 42nd Street . One of my doctors has an office on the other side of the mural on 41st Street and from The window of the waiting room I watched it get painted.


Back in the late '70s and early '80s Irving Plaza was the place to see live music.It might still be but I wouldn't know . But I saw a lot of shows there . But I never noticed that the Chrysler Building was visiblepast the Marquee.


Today I went to see the new Spider-Man movie at the movie theater on Coney Island Avenue near Avenue H. I was meeting a friend there who lives around the corner And he mentioned to me that even though there is a railroad cut parallel to Avenue H he had never seen a train run on it. I got to the movies a little early and went to get a cup of coffee and I decided to drink it on top of the railroad bridge.I saw a train coming really slow . Maybe you can call it a train if it was a truck with train Wheels on it but it was on the train tracks.

I got to take this picture because the truck / train thing came to a stop and started honking.

I failed at zooming in with my camera but I was able to Crop the picture to point out the fact that the truck driver was hunking his horn at the possum that was running on the track








And one last thing is that I took the subway home from Avenue H today.And a significant victory for people with accessibility needs that station is now accessible without needing to use stairs . Along with that they prettied it up a little bit.They made it look like a country railroad station along with fake wooden posts and a rocking chair that is welded to the ground and doesn't rock


This is not me

This is not me
Not me.

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