Time to take to a wheelchair…

…not least because it should enhance my quality of life quite considerably.

Finally made what should be a life-enhancing decision yesterday. For years, walking or standing has been excruciatingly painful and, while I did use a wheelchair when I went out for a couple of years in the mid nineties, I never really felt comfortable (and folding chairs do flex in use, and sap energy that should be going to the wheels).

Overall, though, I tended to feel that using a chair was “quitting” in some ill-defined way (probably a guy thing!), and resisted the temptation to take to one permanently. That plus the fact that I simply couldn’t afford a rigid-framed chair (how the hell can a length of bent tube, a few straight pieces, an assortment of brackets, two cushions and a pair of wheels cost upwards of £1,000 – very upwards, in fact the sky seems to be the limit).

This week, however, I found myself tracking down second-hand rigid chairs, because since I developed heart failure, my legs have become horribly swollen, and even more painful – getting up from a chair is pure agony and, frankly, I’ve had enough.

First problem – you wouldn’t believe how hard it is to find a used rigid chair – or the high prices, even second-hand, in some cases. Anyway, I finally pitched up at the EPC website where they have used rigid chairs from £200.

One of the £200 chairs, a Continue reading

As with Mark Twain, reports of the death of books are greatly exaggerated…

For openers, this article is a pleasant change from the Guardian’s “death of books imminent” hysteria/paranoia. (A shortened version of this post appears in the Comments there.)


Since I bought my Kindle in the first tranche of releases last year, I’ve probably bought more print books, not fewer – quite the opposite of what I expected or wanted (I’m running out of book space).

Partly this is in rebellion against some of the Continue reading

Say no to AV and doom the country…

Do you believe that voting No to AV will strike a blow against Nick Clegg? You’re a cretin.

Do you believe that voting Yes to AV will favour the BNP? You’re a cretin.

Do you believe that AV means that your MP might turn out to have been  the third choice? (Actually seen that one on Continue reading

Are you to blame for your own disability?

Cameron thinks some of us are.

Yep, really, that misbegotten fuckwit Cameron wants to remove benefits from people considered to be complicit in their own disability. Just how many classifications are there where that might be considered an appropriate definition (appropriate to Numbnuts, of course, not to sane people), beyond the addicts, alcoholics and the obese who seem to get up his nose the most (but Continue reading

#BeFrank campaign – my contribution.

So OK, then, I’m depressed.Depression is not just feeling fed up, or unhappy with your lot – it can be life-threatening.

I suffer from frequent, almost suicidal depression, and the drugs don’t work. SSRI’s*** make me cough so uncontrollably my lungs bleed, and tricyclics shut my brain down – can’t be doing with that.

**SSRIs do actually work, and kick in very quickly, but the side-effects are too severe to tolerate. Ditto tricyclics. Received wisdom is that both these drugs can take three weeks or so to kick in – in my experience it’s more like days.

Depression – serious to the point of suicide depression – is Continue reading