This Magazine

Progressive politics, ideas & culture


ThisAbility #1: "So, what happened? Did you get in an accident, or something?"

This Magazine Staff

[Editor’s Note: Today we’re launching the first in what will likely become a stable of BLOG.THIS columns. Aaron Broverman will be writing “ThisAbility,” a column about issues of disability. ThisAbility will appear each Tuesday. Look for more soon.]
“So, what happened? Did you get in an accident, or something?”
No, but this is still ranks in the top three questions I, and I know a whole lot of other people with disabilities, get asked by the able-bodied population on a constant basis. It is right up there with “Are you okay?” and “How fast does that thing go?” So, as an introduction to me (your host on this journey through disability issues) and by extension this blog, I will tell you “what happened,” just this once…

I have Cerebral Palsy, a congenital, non-progressive disability that usually affects the cerebellum part of the brain. CP comes with symptoms affecting balance, coordination, spasticity, posture and speech, along a varying spectrum of severity that comes to every individual differently. I like to use the maxi-pad analogy to describe it: I have Cerebral Palsy light. I walk with a cane outside the house and use a scooter for long distances. There is no speech effect and ladies — the plumbing works.
Enough about me, THIS and I have a blog to launch. We want this disability issues blog to be more about the attitudinal issues people with disabilities routinely come up against. Sure, we will cover those big systemic accessibility issues as they arise, and give you information on cool things in the community, but we don’t want this club to be so exclusive that we’re making people feel unable to broach particular beefs, questions or comments. Nothing is off limits here, and we hope to get a good, juicy dialogue going between writer and reader. Look for it right here, every Tuesday.
broverman_a.jpgAaron is a freelance journalist living in Toronto. His work has appeared in Financial Post Business, Investment Executive Newspaper, and TV Week Magazine, along with He is a regular contributor to Abilities Magazine and is currently plotting a weekly web comic called GIMP, with artist Jon Duguay, about a handicap school bus driver who wakes up after a crash to find he’s the last able-bodied person on earth — and he’s being hunted.

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