My Facebook Thoughts

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sir, The Messiah Will See You Now

I thought I would share with you an interesting day I had Tuesday. Yesterday I had an interview to determine whether or not I am disabled enough to use the area's paratransit services.

I use a bus service that was setup for those too disabled to use the mainline buses and trains. The service is great. I make a reservation the day ahead and a bus picks me up at my house and takes me where I need to go. I've been using the services for over 20 years. It gives me the independence to go to work to earn a comfortable living all these years. Sometimes it would not be perfect, i.e. long waits, long rides and general incompetence. But, 95% of the time it is great.

Every four years I need to be reevaluated to see if I'm disabled enough to continue using the service. It always feels like I'm going to meet Jesus and he might make my disability go away.
I have friends in wheelchairs that have been told they can't use the service. Despite being in a wheelchair they have been told they weren't disabled enough to use the service.

So when I go to the reevaluation office I am surrounded by some of the areas finest thespians. There are some people who use the service just because its easier, despite being more than able bodied to use the regular buses and trains. So they fake ailments. I admit in the past I've had to exaggerate my disability because I know what they are looking for. I never drool or anything, but I have faked getting tired before I really was. Today I didn't have to act. The morning breeze was cool enough to freeze up my driving hand. I'll get my final results in 3 weeks.

So eventhough I've been unable to walk for 44 years and science has not yet found a cure for my disability I will need to prove myself every four years. I just wanted to give you a glimpse into a small part of my disabled life. I wonder if the Boy/Girl Scouts have similar testing procedures.


bill said...

the boy/girl scouts probably would have similiar testing if they actually had to use public transportation; but i think their main concern is not being hit by it while helping elderly people cross the street.

Mark Ploch said...

I was thinking along the lines of testing if boys were still boys and girls were still girls every four years.

Laura Jurkovic said...

You are so right that it would feel as is you were speaking with a Higher Being. Someone who has to follow the "rules" of making decisions for someone else's well being. I am glad I did not take a job like that. I am very grateful I am not a Judge who has to determine life or death for someone. YIKES!!!!!!!!! We hope your "Higher Being" on that day woke up on the happy side of their bed.

bill said...

mark, i have always said: "you can't tell the players without a merit badge."

or did i just think that? i'm not really sure?

Diane said...

"I was thinking along the lines of testing if boys were still boys and girls were still girls every four years."

I heard that was the scout leader’s job.

In all seriousness though, this 4 year process seems ridiculous if your disability is not one that can improve. You should qualify to be "a lifetime member"

Mark Ploch said...

I guess they like to be optimistic.

Tara said...


Julie said...

This makes me laugh so loud, my residents have to prove every year that they are still retarded in order to receive services in IL. Doctor certified no less, or else the state will do what? It as if they have some grandiose idea that my residents are going to be cured of RETARDATION in a year or two. We may be using the funds they had marked for vacation in Florida. Sorry about it State.

PeaKay40 said...

Evaluating every four years is the
norm for Government.
They have to spend all that money they don't have, so what better than to bring our disabled residents to take time out of their day and go to be re evaluated
by someone that needs to spend their day deciding who can and who can't ride in a vehicle and who can't. After 44 years of not being able to walk you'd think that one visit would be enough.

Maybe we could save some money by
not having to re evaluate people that truly are in need of these services and be done with it.
However when did we ever think that
our government would do something
without a study or a million dollar
survey to determine something that can easily be seen as needed.
One day perhaps it will improve.

Capitalist Pig said...

Thanks for the insight. I got a chuckle out of some of your sarcasm. I'd like to see the government evaluation form they use to make the determination of 'not disabled enough'. If it is left to a government employee's discretion that's really bad...not that it already doesn't smack of bad bureaucracy.