Living and laughing with a disability - cerebral palsy; ordinary life, extraordinary circumstances.

Saturday, March 18, 2006


When I was at Oregon State in the 80's, I had a column in the Daily Barometer titled Witticisms. It was my outlook on the world, with a bent toward light humor.

I miss writing a column. It ran every Friday, and I was paid just $7 a column, but I had a base of fans who use to let me know when I got it right.

I'll never forget the column I wrote for disability awareness week. I spent a long night writing, rewriting, and starting over again. I was ranting, raving and yelling at people. I didn't want to do that! I wanted to touch people.

Somewhere in the wee morning hours I felt my spine tingle. The Pepsi induced inspiration was pouring out my fingers. I wrote about a day in the life of my best buddy.

I have always identified with Mr. Magoo, rambling my way through a challenged filled world, and somehow making it to where I need to be, never aware of the odds against me.

People who knew me knew exactly who my "best buddy" was. I remember getting a call from the sports editor --- the sports guy --- praising me for the column. I didn't know those guys read anything but sports!

People who didn't know who I was probably thought it was just a nice story, but one that made them think.

I am hoping to use my new Blogger site "witticisms" as a way to get my juices flowing. I want to get a domain for it, but is taken. Hmmm...

Blind tech exec knocks down walls for disabled | CNET

Very cool story about technology aiding the blind.

He is amemmber of the British blind water skiing team...

Blind tech exec knocks down walls for disabled CNET

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Life is good for us...but we feel like there is something more we should be doing.

My wife wants to be a speaker; I want to be a writer.

My wife manages over 20 support staff at a DHS Child Welfare office. Her days are so packed that she often does not realize that she has missed lunch. My job is as support at another Child Welfare branch as a IV-E Eligibility Specialist, as technical as it sounds.

At night I work on my computer at home, designing websites, reading blogs, and writing my own blog. I have designed a website for myself, for my son's scout pack, his football team, his baseball team, and our church. A couple years ago I had the inspiration to design and publish My idea was to provide a place to list the military and other personnel who are serving our country during this time of war---for the purposes of praying for them. I paid for "Traffic Blazer", used Google Ads, even have a small sign on my car, but I have not found a way to draw people to the site.

If I have learned anything, it's that web design is the easy part. I have become pretty adept at putting together sites using Mambo and Joomla, a open source content mangement system. Getting a site out there, making it interesting enough to draw people in...that is the hard part.

My wife is very busy with her job as office manager, but she misses the days when she was involved with Toastmasters. She loves giving speeches, and would like one day to speak on behalf of the disabled, to educate people on the needs, hopes and the dreams of the disabled.

For myself, I do need to return to writing. I spend way too much time spinning my wheels on playing with my websites. Even though I feel I have a lot to offer as a web designer, competition is fierce and finding the business is difficult. Writing, though, if I could get that going, I have a story to write that no one else has.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Scammed...I can't believe it!

If it sound's too good to be true, it probably is. I know that!

A couple weeks ago, in my quest to check out ways for my wife and I to get an accessible van, I stumbled across a Google ad regarding applying for federal grants for just about anything.

I submitted the information in my previous post regarding our situation and our desire to get a full size accessible van, along with my home and work phone numbers. I don't remember what other information I gave, but I know I did not give my ssn of checking account#.

Last week I received a call from work. This lady said that we easily qualified for a $5000 grant, and probably more. She then asked if I had a checking account, and if I could pay a $295 application fee.

I was so duped! I forgot to look at my phone screen to see if a number appeared. I don't think we get caller ID at work.

I just said, "No thank you," and I hung up.