Monday, May 27, 2013

Noted

From an article about an Air Force Sgt. who lost his legs and an arm in Afghanistan:
Deslauriers, 34, has come to Bellingham [Ma.] with his wife and 17-month-old son from Bethesda, where he’s still receiving medical treatment for his 2011 injuries. After the Memorial Day parade, he is hoping to talk to Boston Marathon bombing survivors about life as a triple amputee. He wants to tell them how hard it is to get used to strangers who fix their eyes on his missing legs or look away in disgust. On his worst days he wants to slap these people.
People are probably not looking away in disgust; more likely it's embarrassment, shyness, or not knowing exactly what to say. (One can always thank veterans for serving but that sounds trite; it's probably better than saying nothing but it's not necessarily easy to produce even a few words even when you know you should.) 

4 comments:

thusbloggedanderson said...

Yah, I agree he's misreading that; people just get awkward how to relate to disabled people (pretend they're not disabled? ask "whoa, how'd THAT happpen?").

Almost irrelevantly, I'm reminded of the woman whose purchase I rang up in my bookstore-retail-minimum-wage days: double amputee, two Boston arms. I remember her not because of that, but because she paid with a check: held the pen vertically, wrote beautifully.

LFC said...

"Boston arms"?

thusbloggedanderson said...

That is probably what they were called in my World Book Encyclopedia as a kid, anyway. It terminated in a pair of hooks, which she could exercise some control over with nerve signals, evidently. Obit of the inventor.

LFC said...

thks -- I don't think I'd ever heard the phrase.