Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Driving & Disabilities


Sorry I haven't posted in forever, I was busy GRADUATING COLLEGE! Yup, on the 20th of May I walked at my graduation and obtained my fake diploma. Now that I have my BFA in Graphic Design I have to find a job. Before I find a job I have to find a way of getting to said job.

This brings me to a question that a fair amount of people have asked me recently. Can cripples drive? The answer is simple, with the proper instruction and equipment, yeah sure. I have my driver's license. My driving instructor specialized in teaching people with disabilities. I can more or less drive like a "normal" person plus or minus a few accommodations. I use both of my feet when I drive (left foot on the break, right on the gas) because I can't move my right leg fast enough to use the breaks, and I use more mirrors because my neck is very stiff. As my driving teacher said "I've taught 88 year old who can turn their necks more than you can!". I have fond memories of driving lessons....

And here's some proof that I can actually drive.

Crippie's Tippie: If you're having physical trouble driving, be creative... my driving teacher didn't think of me using two feet to drive, my dad did. 

Monday, May 16, 2011

Raising Cane: The Exhibit


I had my very first exhibition on Saturday and it really was wonderful. The general consensus amongst the people viewing it was that it needs to become a real business, I'm definitely going look into making that happen. As promised, here are some photos of the final exhibit.
Table Top Display
Here is my book (which you can purchase HERE) as well as some postcards and business cards I designed for the show.
Sign & Canes
The sign changed quite a bit for the actual show, I am a fan of the color.
Wheelchair & Crutches
I decorated my wheelchair and used it as a stand for some kick-ass child's crutches.
Entire Display

The exhibit as a whole... TA-DA!

I really am thrilled with how the whole experience turned out. Now I pose a question to my readers... if I were to make these canes into some form of company do you think they'd be successful?

Crippie's Tippie- Make the best out of your situation. I've turned a painful and lifelong disability into a very successful senior project. There is no point in sitting around and complaining about the bad stuff in your life, get up and try to make something good out of it.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Raising The Canes


Today was my Raising Cane BFA exhibit! Sorry I wasn't able to post progress shots, but chronic fatigue and setting up an installation don't leave much time for blogging. I figured I'd post the progress shots now (better late than never... right?)

Me being happy with the progress.

It's not that I don't trust people... it's that I just don't trust people.

14 FOOT SCAFFOLDING!!! I wasn't able to climb it, but this is when friends and family come in handy.

I am very lucky to have friends and relatives that are willing to conquer their fears of heights for me!

The final product on the end of day one, it ended up changing quite a bit, but still. This was the beginning of my installation.

I will post more pictures of the actually exhibit when I upload them to my computer. Tonight I feel like relaxing and watching stupid things on the internet.

Now, in addition to making the canes, I also wrote a book. The book focused on my reasons behind the project, my experiences with using mobility aids, and how I physically did my project. I have some exciting news... my book is available for purchase (and in PDF form for the eco-concious among us)!!! The book can be obtained HERE.

Crippie's Tippie- BUY MY BOOK... lol just kidding. My real tippie is try not to be ashamed about asking for help. I know it sucks when you can't physically do something, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Let's Raise Some Cane!


The next few weeks are going to be very interesting. I graduate from college on 20th *AAAHHHHH*, while I'm actively looking for a job, I still haven't found one yet. While I am very excited about the prospects of graduating I am temporary distracted by something else. As mentioned here, I feel very strongly that mobility aids should look good, so I decided to something about it for my senior project. I decided to decorate approximately 40 mobility aids, turning them into fashion statements rather than signs of disability. I designed patterns, printed them out, and glued them to canes, walkers, etc. On Saturday the 14th I will be participating in my graduating classes BFA exhibit. My canes will be on display in the School of Art+Design at Purchase College from 2pm to 5pm. I invite everyone reading this (who physically can attend) to attend.
For those you cannot go, you can see bits and pieces of my project on my website. I'm very excited about having my very own exhibit. I am slightly nervous about the physical installation. Apparently it involves scaffolding. I tried to prepare for this event by blackmailing (I mean recruiting) people to help me install, but I do want to do as much of this on my own as humanly possible. I will definitely update the blog with progress shots of the exhibit as it comes up.

Crippie's Tippie- Take charge of your situation, even if you can't change what is occurring, make small changes to take some control of it.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011



First off, gotta get this out of the way.... w0000t we got bin Laden! Now we return to finding the other hide and seek champion of the world, Carmen Sandiego. Where the hell has she been?

Now on to other business. I've had 10 operations over the past 12 years. My scars have the tendency to heal sorta weird. I usually heal keloid (big, red, puffy scars). That's my leg when I was around 12. Luckily those scars have faded considerably since.
I had surgery on my wrist in January, so naturally I was curious as to how I was going to heal. I really didn't want a giant scar on my wrist. Recently the scar has healed enough so I can get a glance as to what I'm gonna be dealing with for the next few years until it fades. Alas, it kinda keloided. In a shocking twist of hilarity, I noticed yesterday that my new scar is shaped like a tampon. I consider this a good thing. I'M A REAL LIFE HARRY POTTER! Now, if my scar hurts whenever my monthly visitor draws near that would be awesome.

Now, what do I do with a scar that looks like a tampon? I do what any person with a kick-ass scar would do... SCAR WARS. Scar Wars are competitions where people decide who's scar is more awesome. Things like size, color, and shape are usually deciding factors. I've been participating in scar wars with my fellow cripples for years. I usually win these competitions. I've only been beaten by one other cripple, but her scars really are impressive.

The moral of this story? Don't freak out when you realize that you have a scar shaped like a tampon on your body and that it will probably be there for the rest of your life. Instead, celebrate it. It is a fun little quirk that will provide many an interesting story later on. I am proud of all my scars, they are like tattoos, only with better stories.

Crippie's Tippie- If you don't like showing your scars, I hear vitamin E does wonders for the healing process. Some people also say that "mederma" stuff works like a charm.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Internet & Disability

This is my post for "Blogging Against Disablism Day 2011"

As promised here I would make an entry about how the internet is one of the greatest advances for the disabled community. The internet has many benefits for the disabled community.
-Easy it is to access and share information about your disability. I'm a member of support groups for my disability and I get a wealth of information on how to manage my disability from there.
-Easier means for scientists and researchers to contact people to make medical advances. I've met several researchers working on curing my disease and I've donated some of my removed tumors to science.
-Social aspects, I get to talk to people when I'm normally too weak or in too much pain to leave the house.
-DISTRACTIONS, when I'm in pain there's no better cure than some LOLcats and a stupid YouTube video.
-The internet brings the world to my fingertips when I would not normally be able to excess it.
Here's an article on how the internet impacts people with disabilities.

Crippie's Tippie- "Charlie The Unicorn" is the best video on YouTube... ever. I know this isn't much of a tip, but people need to know these things.
Crippie's Actual Tippie- To all of my fellow cripples, we cannot and we will not let our disabilities get the best of us. Sure, our lives will be more challenging but there is no way in hell that I am going to let my disability stop me from doing what I have to do.
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