Archive for June, 2010

So yesterday, I asked my Chair Tech guy what they’d do with my old Chair once I get the new one.
Sadly, they throw them away.

This got me thinking to what I did the last time to my old Chair.

It was about ten years ago.
An all day Music Festival called Edgefest was coming to Ottawa.
The lineup included Green Day, & Foo Fighters.
My new Chair was set to arrive the day after the Concert, so I got an idea.

My plan was to destroy the Chair I had, and I decided to do it while having ALOT of fun.
The answer:
Go into the Mosh Pit at a HUGE Concert.

I was fully aware of the risks involved, but honestly, I didn’t care.
Luckily, my Attendant that day was a tall, strong guy who was pretty wild at the time.
He was all for it.

We arrived at Lansdowne Park, and scoped the place out.
For most of the day, we sat further in the back, and had a great preview of our plan.
As the night wore on, we started getting closer to the Stage.
I was really nervous, but it was something I’ve always wanted to do.

Green Day was up next, so we got to our spot, and went over the game plan.
The next thing we knew, it was time.

The Crowd gathered around, and my Chair started rocking.
Then, some guy at the front of the Stage started firing Water with a hose at the Crowd.
At that moment, I wasn’t able to drive my Chair, plus my Chair was soaked.
My main concern was to keep my Ventilator dry, which we managed to do.

Soon after, Crowd surfing started.
People got near me a few times, but my Attendant was able to throw them so they didn’t hit me.
We got out soon after that.

One of the Roadies saw us, and we told them about our mission, and he gave us Drumsticks from Green Day, & Foo Fighters.

By the end of the night, my Chair had been totally thrashed, and I was proud of myself.

I got my Chair the very next day without any questions being asked.
Don’t ask
Don’t tell

So this leads me to my next mission.
I need to figure out how to “kill” this Chair when I know my new one’s on the way.

If you have any suggestions, please let me know.

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They brought back my old Chair, which means back to the five switches.

I have mixed feelings.

The other Chair was faster, quieter, and it was just one Joystick, which made things easier.

Regardless of what I decide to use, the new Chair will be faster, quieter, and smaller.

This one weighs 500 lbs, and it’s considered old technology, so anything I get will be a vast improvement.

On Saturday, my Wife & I headed out for Ice Cream.

As I headed home, my hands started getting cold.
When that happens, my hands become weak, and eventually I can’t do anything.

By the time, I got near my place, my Attendant had to use the Joystick, so I could get home.
Besides a few mishaps along the way, we made it back.
I was hoping that my Joystick would be easier to use when that happens, but sadly, no.

So, it looks like I’ll have to go back to the old drawing board, unless we can figure something else out with this Joystick.

More wacky fun lies ahead.

On Sunday, my Wife made me Coffee.
There was no way in hell that I was going out after what happened the night before, plus it was bad Weather.
My Back was sore from the night before, so my Wife gave me a wonderful Back Massage.
The reason why my Back hurt was because by the time I got home on Saturday, I was really low in my Chair, which is really hard on my Back.

Luckily, I felt better after my Wife took good care of me on Sunday Night.

I have no official plans until Thursday.
Thursday is Canada Day, so my Wife & I will probably be out and about.

Last year, we went to Parliament Hill for the Noon time show.
We had pretty good seats, so we were on TV quite a bit.
We also got to meet the Prime Minister, and the Governor General.

This year, the Queen’s coming.
I really don’t understand why Canada’s still connected to the British.
I mean, Canada’s turning 143 years old, isn’t it time for us to move out from our Parent’s Basement?

To be honest, I wouldn’t mind meeting the Queen.
If I meet her, I’d ask why British people have bad teeth.
My Dad’s British, and well, he’s just not easy to look at.

Besides that, I have no real plans.

Yesterday, I met my Wife at work at Lunch time, and we headed to a Park to hear some live Jazz. I don’t remember who they were, but they were pretty good.
After that, my Wife went back to work, and I headed off in search of Espresso, and some fun in the sun.

I stopped off at Timothy’s and drank my Espresso on their Patio. It’s not a bad way to spend a Friday Afternoon.

After that, I went to a Tattoo Shop to get some ideas for my sixth Tattoo.
The ones I have now are a lightning bolt on left bicep, barbwire around left wrist, chain around right wrist, pot leaf below left knee and chinese wording which means unique, which is on my lower right leg. The Pot Leaf is designed like the Canadian Flag, and below it, it says Oh Cannabis.

Each of my Tattoos means something to me.

The lightning bolt represents my ability to quickly destroy things in my way, plus I enjoy driving my chair around fast.

The Barbwire represents the feeling of being feeling imprisoned for 19 years when I lived in the Hospital, and how I managed to jump the fence so to speak.

The Chain represents the fact that I feel chained to/by certain things in life. It also reminds me that other Disabled people are too, and to keep fighting in order to break those chains, not just for myself, but others too.

The Pot Leaf is because, well, I used to smoke Pot often. Even though I don’t really smoke anymore, I believe that it should be decriminalized or even legalized. I know a few people who smoke it for Medical reasons, and I strongly support the cause.

The Tattoo that means unique is because I think it defines my personality, my life, and even the way I look. I happen to take alot of pride in that too. I’m unique, and proud of it.

As far as my next Tattoo goes, I think I’d like to get the Wheelchair Symbol, but I’d add a Celtic twist to it or something. I’m actually Half Irish, and well, in a Wheelchair.
Pretty self explanatory I think.
I’ll probably get it on my Forearm.

As of right now, the plan is to hopefully get in done in August when my Sister’s in Town.

While on the topic of Tattoos, I was going to take my Wife to see The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo tonight, but she changed her mind.

In other news…
Apparently, this new Chair is pretty quiet, which is both good and bad.
It’s good because I can sneak up on people and scare them, and be stealthy. I love being stealthy. It’s refreshing to actually have some people NOT notice me for once.

The bad part of not sounding like a Tank is people aren’t getting out of my way as much. In my old Chair, they’d hear me coming, and the smart ones would move. I was like Moses parting the Red Sea.
The not so smart ones stare or ignore me, and if they got in my way, well, they’d become bowling pins.

And that’s just another reason why being Disabled is fun at times.

Despite the title, this isn’t a post about my sex life.

I know it’s been awhile since my last post.
I have alot to say, so let’s get to it.

So last Saturday, it was crappy outside, so I stayed home.
Later that day, I spent the Evening with my Wife.

Luckily, the next day was beautiful, so we took full advantage of it.

We started off by heading Downtown to check out a Cafe that my Wife heard about.
The place is called Xpresso, and it’s right behind the Metro Grocery Store on Rideau Street.
It’s a pretty nice place, but the pictures on their Website make it look bigger than it is.
The Bathroom is Wheelchair Accessible, they also sell my favorite Beer, and their Espresso’s pretty good.
They also have TVs everywhere.
On Thursdays, they have live Music, so I plan on checking that out at least once this Summer.
If you’re in Ottawa, I suggest you check it out.

If you go, tell them Ryan sent you. They’ll have no idea who the hell you’re talking about, but it might be funny.

So after that, we went Shopping.
Now, as most Married Men know, Shopping with your Wife or sig other is never as quick or easy as we envision.

By the time we were done, it was time for me to go home for a bit.
About thirty minutes later, we headed back out, and walked down by the River.
We just walked around, took pictures of the scenery, and then headed home.
It was nice & romantic.

Monday was my big appointment for my new Wheelchair.
This is the day that I’d get to take a loaner Chair home to try it out.
Before I did that, I got transferred from my old Chair to a bed, so they could transfer my seat to the other Chair.
From there, I got put back into the new Chair, and all set up so I could try out the new Joystick.

At first, I had a hard time driving it because it was too fast, and it kept tipping backwards. I also kept running into things.
After a few minor adjustments, I tried it again, and it went much better.

Later that day, I went to the park to try it out in a wide opened space.
Everything kept getting easier, plus I’m typically a quick learner.

Originally, I was just gonna try it until Thursday, but I was unable to get to my Appointment.
As of now, I’m not sure when I’ll be returning it.
I wish I could try it out for the whole Summer while the paperwork’s being processed, but I doubt it.

On Wednesday, I co-taught a Workshop about Stand-Up Comedy.
This was for people with various Mental Disorders, which made things interesting.

We started off with six people.

One person decided to draw instead of taking notes.
One person became agitated/uncomfortable and decided to leave.
Another person kept coming & going, but eventually stayed.
We ended up having 5 people left by the time it ended.

All in all, it was an interesting experience.
I hope to do it again eventually.

I got home around 1:35 pm.
Little did I know, my day was about to become more interesting.

At 1:41 pm, as I was heading back out to get an Espresso, an Earthquake happened, and it was big, at least for this Area.
My Wife called to see if I was ok, and luckily, everything was ok. Nothing fell or broke.
Her Office Building was being evacuated.

From there, I headed out to try to find her.
I just had this sense that she needed me, and I wanted to be there for her.
Sadly, I couldn’t find her though.
I guess I’ll never make the cover of a cheesy Romance Novel.

There were TONS of people standing around outside because every Office Building Downtown got evacuated.
After awhile, I gave up looking for her & tried to get an Espresso, but most places were closed due to the Quake.
I came across Tim Horton’s, and managed to get a Coffee.

I headed home, & my Wife called soon after that.
She bought me an Espresso, which was damn good.
So at that point, I had half a Cup of Coffee, plus an Espresso.
Since I got up at 8, I needed them both.

We were supposed to go to the Jazz Festival that night, but it rained.
Instead, we ended up having a nice quiet Evening together.

Thursday was a Holiday for French people, so I was able to spend part of the day with my Wife.
We had Espresso, and really delicious Chocolates.

As of now, no real plans this Weekend besides seeing my Mom before she leaves for a Month.

Sorry that this post was so long, but I hope you enjoyed reading it.

On WednesdayNight, I went to see Iron Man 2, and it was awesome!
Not quite as good as the first one, but it’s a close call actually.

It rained off/on all day on Wednesday.
When the Movie was over, there was a downpour going on.
Luckily, I had a ride on Para Transpo, but I still had to get on the Bus.
I decided to put on my Poncho, which made me look like a HUGE Condom or the Bubble Boy.
By the time I got home, the rain had stopped.

Thursday Afternoon was spent trying out my new Wheelchair Controls.
For those unaware, the ones I have now are called Proximity Switches.
Basically, I can just tap the buttons and off I go.
The new Control, if all goes well, will be a single piece.
I’ll be using a Joystick with my thumb.

I had a few problems while testing it out, but next Week, I’ll be able to try it out for a whole Week. I’m hoping that it goes well and it all works out.

After my Appointment, I headed Downtown, and had a Beer on a Patio.
There was a HUGE Crane in front of us, and my Waitress told me about a show that involved people drumming high up in the air.
A few minutes later, the show started and it was pretty cool.

Apparently they’re performing again this Weekend, but you gotta pay, and frankly, that’s just not happening.

Have a good Weekend everyone.

So today, I went to see my Respirologist and everything’s fine with my Lungs.
I took a look at my Chest X-Ray, which interests me greatly.

There’s a little bit of white stuff inside, but he explained that it’s just scarring, which is pretty normal for me.
Now he’s sending me for an Echocardiogram, which is basically an Ultrasound on my Heart. Nothing to worry about. It’s just to make sure everything’s ok.
It’s not until the end of August, so all’s good for the Summer.

Before every appointment with him, they hook me up to two Monitors.
One measures my Heart rate, and the other one monitors the amount of Carbon Dioxide when I breathe.

Now, in case you’re just tuning in to my Blog, I should point out that I can’t breathe at all on my own. When they check those things, one of the plugs has to hook up to the actual Ventilator Tube.

The “Nurse” had no idea what to do and she thought she needed to put nose clips on me, so I wouldn’t let too much air out.
Well I had to inform her that air doesn’t come out of me like that, and to just use the regular attachment.
Once she had it all set up, she told me to close my mouth & my nose.

Ok, how the hell do I close my nose?
Is that even possible?

Anyways, I’m going back in six months.

I received some good news today, both regarding Bluesfest.
It looks like they’ll be putting in at least 2 elevated platforms, so that people in Wheelchairs can see over people’s heads. That’s pretty good, and I’m proud of myself for suggesting that to them.

Secondly, I’ll be doing an online interview shortly to discuss Wheelchair Accessibility, and everything that’s involved with making it more Accessible.

I think it’s very important that people know about it, and how important Wheelchair Accessibility is, especially for a HUGE World Reknowned Music Festival.

Once I know when the interview is, I will post that information here.

Tonight, I’m heading out to finally see Iron Man 2.