Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Top Ten Reasons Why I Hate "Attitudes Are The Real Disability"

10. I really hate when boring phrases like this catch on.Able-bodied America should strike it out of banality, if nothing else, but they love it so much they want to argue with me about retaining it.
9. Because it makes disabled people into human object lessons.

8.  That there are still people that read that and go (sniff) "Really makes you think!" instead of ignoring it like a fart.
7.It makes people ignore disabled people's real problems, because we're Special.
6. Puts a lot of pressure on disabled people to live up to brightening others' lives, which we don't need. as a kid, I actually felt guilty for not being like that, but I think now disabled kids should be taught like girls are about airbrushed photos: Nobody always looks like that.

5.  Once you are no longer a cute kid, as a disabled person you can be an inspiring motivation fairy that helps strangers you don't care about start that workout they've been lying about for five years.
4.  Duh...disability(and an inaccessible world) is the "real disability"
3.  why should non-disabled people get to use us to have feels?
2.  "No amount of smiling at a bunch of stairs ever turned it into a ramp."--Stella Young
1. Forty years later, reading it, I kind of feel like Stormy Daniels must hearing some guy say...I don't know...."Some women say I'm a lot to handle," Yeah.  Right. How nice for you. Sometimes it's just really hard to whip up that womanly receptivity that 10,000th time so I kind of unloaded on Mr. Decent But Clueless...

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Rewriting and"She's Having A Baby"

Sometimes it's encouraging when someone you(mostly) respect as an artist has some of the same problems as you.That is probably why I was so psyched to watch John Hughes' comedy about marriage and infertility "She's Having A Baby" when it was on cable the other night.

Granted, I am always working on a smaller scale, but I've really struggled for years with finding an adult creative voice when my life...really lacks most of the signifiers of adulthood.(Not that the suburban Shermer image of a job that forces you to grow up by being your one, well-fed, straitjacket doesn't feel sort of antique anyway, given how many side jobs people I know have just to keep going...I'm not sure how many people were living like this when he wrote like that, honestly, but very few are now.)

Anyway, I had some early luck writing about snarky teens/twenties crip outsiders and what they saw on the periphery, and blah, blah, we're all the same down deep, two parts struggle to three parts wish-fulfillment but feeling like a persecuted artiste because I had to fight for the main character's right to...I don't know, say "shit!" when she jams her thumb or something.(Like I would really do, but the most common feedback I got from my crip-focused writers' group was always that I was "comfortable with the male perspective" because of the expletives.)

  I guess I could have frozen a character in amber and eventually...I don't know, given her a you-tube channel or an instagram to post her scars on, but somehow my heart isn't with that kind of lightness anymore. I would love to have an "It Gets Better" story for the yutes, but it hasn't, at least not enough that I can place a reassuring hand on someone's spiritual shoulder and tell them how great being different is supposed to be.Everything that I have accomplished, such as it is, has taken me SO LONG that I am probably only twenty-five in work years/

Not really sure what's wrong with the movie, even when I didn't pick it out in the video store because it was the  latest from "the Ferris Bueller guy" and that meant spending a long-ago bright autumn afternoon watching a movie with sperm-count jokes with my father..The cast is pretty good, with Kevin Bacon and Elizabeth McGovern as newlyweds, and a lot of "Hey, it's that guy/ gal!" Chicago actors that you would recognize from a lot of shows in the 80s and 90s.(weirdly, including actor Dennis Dugan who made the cast of "Hill Street Blues" call him Captain Freedom all day so he didn't break character--no word on whether he expected everyone to treat him like an ad exec for this one!) Maybe it's just that they tell us Our Heroes are So In Love but what we really watch is a lot of picking each other apart...maybe it just that it never decides if we are supposed to root for them fitting in their neighborhood or not.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Sometimes I think I am(comparatively) fine...

-but the digestive distress starts again, or the skin stuff, or the insomnia.More niggling than a true disorder, but not great. Learning a lot about fiber in common vegetables, though.

-Feeling a bit better about our state since some more Dems won, I suppose, but our problems are not solved..also, getting Sinema just means we get the Heitkamp instead of North Dakota. Yes, I can vouch for her being smart and personable and *looking* modern, but her ideas about politics are old-fashioned...not really getting sucked into the Krysten Cult again.(I hope she wows me and next year at this time, I just race to take this back, but I so doubt it. I didn't give her a nickel and I feel kind of proud about that...she's too "independent "for my Dem Socialist ass anyway. Also, how much did she spend on those stupid ads about"having the desert in her blood." What?I need my money more than anyone needs to get paid to write that.

- Already feeling some good effects from the feedback I bought from "The Masters Review" as I take another look at "The Wedded Twist"

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Arizona Punked Itself Yesterday-- A Screed in Many Parts

Ok, I know the drill. I have read enough posts aboutwriting and rejection to know what people expect me to say right now(this one, chosen somewhat randomly, even could have a political analogue, wherein the organizer with the holes in his shoes who gets the door slammed in his face because of his funny name and membership in a minority group gets to be(expectant pause) BARACK OBAMA.(Which has sometimes sincerely cheered me, even though I don't expect to reach his heights)

I'm supposed to say this spurs me on, and talk about working harder and faster, and do the whole recent-memory-Cubs thing(it's true that if sports had taken root in me, I probably would have been a Cubs fan both cause of ties to the region and my tendency to swing for the fences and get thwarted...cute mascot, too) and act like Arizona is a struggling franchise entitled to a few rebuilding decades.Maybe someday I'll get back to all that, but not for a while. I beat myself up for a while last night just because that's my most consistent hobby, but I did my job, you know? In my view, the electorate didn't do theirs. Even though, you know, you always think there is more time and money you could spend(although even when you win, you don't really "get it back" in the same way you put it in...that's just for utility companies.  Nope, not funny yet.)Although I don't really think I'll abandon organizing for sloth and/or a drug habit as part of me wanted yesterday.

I think even self- blame is probably going to be useful than the lesson that the party might take from this in attempting to dig up some ex-governor from territorial days to try to appeal to rural regions or something. Of course there are the consultants who see everything as a game of Risk or some bloodless thought experiment like "How many AHCCCS recipients fit on the head of a pin?"To me, even if I make money from this one day, politics will never be that. I have to live with knowing how many of my neighbors don't care about my health, at a minimum. Don't care about kids, except to demonize the ones seeking asylum...teenage me, in her pink sweater, didn't want to believe it, butPublic Enemy was right about this place.(Also, I didn't learn about labor in school...had to reclaim that history as an adult.)
Definitely faced both the power and the limitations of electoral politics yesterday. Even with good candidates and no unopposed races. Not sure I can lay the civics-fairy pitch on so easily, even though, of course checks on Cheeto Benito are essential.Arizona may have to face the kinds of crises that beset states like Michigan and Kansas to learn that low tax rates and business incentives don't save people. I'm scared about that and not sure which one it will be.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

My article came out...

Doesn't really sound like me, but they've got their own style less "rooted" in my heartfelt digressions. Shared with PDA crew and have heard on social networking from the kinds of disability orgs that don't usually look at my work.(Which is nice and offers some of the pleasure I didn't get when the paperwork showed up...however, have to guard against imagining the Whole New Life I might get from this one piece...becoming the "crip voting" guru that the producers at "All In" call, or all my big important books--I guess it could happen, but I've assured myself of five "big breaks" already that didn't swing the world's doors on their hinges) After that happens, it's hard to keep doing what I do.
Read it here... and let me know what you think.  Mail your ballot if you have one...Arizona, deadline's tomorrow!

Monday, October 29, 2018

Bohemian Crip Watches Movies--Maudie, 2017

Have to admit that even increased visibility of crips speaking out about our issues has not diminished my love/hate relationship with disability cinema.*

Yes, I agree that more actors, writers, directors and others with disabilities should be allowed to ply our crafts, but this movie is like many others and does not feature that, to my knowledge. That said, it is a unique addition to the genre for many reasons.

It is as understated and unsparing as the rough mountain scenery that the story takes place among, and maybe its being a Canadian-Irish joint venture counts for the absence of inspiration-porn style hype, or maybe because I didn't know the story of folk artistMaud Lewis so my brain wasn't prompted by rising music toward an expected crypoint or anything of that sort Maud's disability, while a challenge to her family's struggle to be and stay respectable, somewhat pales compared to a teenaged indiscretion that left her pregnant out of wedlock years before the story opens.(unique enough to find a movie that starts with a disabled woman, instead of someone giving bad news to her parents.)

.Both British actress Sally Hawkins, who played Maudie, and Ethan Hawke, playing against his image as her husband with his scars on the inside, delivered strong, if patently unromantic performances.(You might not like their relationship at first...he can be rough on her, but over time, I came to believe he does it more because he doesn't trust anyone to stay around, given his lack of attachment growing up...this made me feel more sympathy, but viewers' mileage may vary on that.)

Disability, while presented as an undeniable fact in Maud's life, made obvious as she struggles to walk long distances or do household chores without modern conveniences, is not a foe for Maudie to fight, any more than her artistic talents are presented as anything more than a sort of...side-hustle that interrupts an endless round of mundane chores. I find this viewpoint, on one hand, admirable and grounding, but also slightly disappointing because nothing Sets Maud Free or transforms her life.  Maudie would probably be surprised, much like the heroine of "A Patch of Blue" that anyone thinks her life awful enough to yearn for a transformation, anyway.Read more about Maud(and see some art)

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Phone Follies...

Calling again today for Florida's Amendment 4, which will, hopefully, reinfranchise over a million Floridians. People are not picking up as they had earlier in the cycle, but one South Asian man was rude about my accent, which stung a bit as he took some time to get specific. On one hand, though, I get it...he is probably in the epicenter of bitching about Indian voices on customer service lines and the like...maybe he's waited half his life to say that to someone from the dominant culture(at least, allegedly) and I blundered right in. Once the insult subsided, it reminded me of when my mom got in a car accident with a dude on a motorbike and my name was on the paperwork.
The adjuster would call me all the time, trying to psych me out about how injured the guy was, and how he had a kid, and, you know...try to get me to admit something or something like that.(Which I couldn't have even done, even if it wouldn't have been both stupid and self-demolishing...I wasn't there.) Anyway, Justin The Adjuster wasn't great at research or something, because his final gotcha was something like "Ms. JaNECKE, you don't understand...this poor man's *life's* been affected...he can barely hop."
I  wanted to tell him that would have been an upgrade for me, especially once I found out that I didn't have enough coverage to get the lift fixed(My policy on current van does...the more you know!) but I'm not sure I had the guts to say it in real life.I was a very different Crip in 2001.
If I did, I'm not sure he would have believed me, because , you know, aren't there *places* for people like that? And I made sense on the phone...surely that means I can get around, right?
Ironies aside, I feel good about this part of my work, but there were some problems. To wit:
-Restoration sounds like "registration" enough that I'm sure I said it wrong a number of times.
-Sometimes those electronic dialling programs aren't All That.
-it can be difficult to cut through 150 years of voting history in the 40 seconds the average busy American gives you before deciding if you are a pain in her ass or not. Especially if you are really trying to project and sound warm and all that, at the same time that you don't want to sound like you are selling them something.