alphacygni: (rails)
[personal profile] alphacygni
So this weekend my back fought with piles of carpets at Building 19, and the carpets won. I started out just sore, and progressed by Monday to full-fledged impaired mobility. I can walk, but only in a slow, hobbling manner. On Monday, I discovered that if you walk slowly for no apparent reason, people will shove you and push you and do the body language equivalent of growling at you. So on Tuesday, I got out my cane.

I have this cane from the first time my back went wonky (almost six years ago? yikes), and I've always held onto it just in case. In addition to providing me with a visual cue that says "I'm not walking like this for no reason, people", it also gives me handhold to lean on when my back spasms. This prevents me from feeling like I'm about to fall over for a split-second, which therefore prevents me from gasping horribly, which scares people.

Commuting to work today with the cane was a real eye-opener. My findings, in short:
In the morning rush hour, the cane worked great. People refrained from pushing me, occasionally even stepped out of my way, and even said "excuse me". In the afternoon rush hour, it made no difference at all. People zoomed around me. It took three stops worth of travel before anyone offered me a seat on the T, even when I was wincing in pain every time the train jerked. It was especially good that someone offered me a seat at that point, because someone else had just shoved me aside with their arm in order to get at the handrail.

I have also have a whole new loathing for revolving doors. Ever tried to hobble and push a sticky revolving door at the same time? At least most (but not all!) revolving doors have a non-revolving door next to them.
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alphacygni

September 2007

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