BUSTED by a GYPSY
Good grief....it was a table in a coffee shop. I have never seen a table reserved for handicapped only restrooms stalls and parking spaces but never a table. The man was apparently able bodied enough to make the extra effort to walk up to your table and instead of kindly calling the mistake to your attention he chose to bang on it with his cane. You made a mistake but handicapped or not, he was being a jerk. What if he was sitting at that table and someone more disabled than he, such as a quadriplegic in a wheel chair, came into the shop? Would he have gotten up and walked on his two legs over to another table? I'm guessing not.
We need to be considerate of others and to comply with the ADA laws but people are going to make mistakes and blunders. I'm always puzzled by people who get all moralistic about things like this. It seems to me most of them aren't all that concerned about disabled people, it's more about them getting to feel extra virtuous for a few moments or appearing noble to others by making sure everyone knows they are on the "good" "or popular side of an issue.
Anyway, this whole topic reminds me of that Seinfeld episode where George parked in a Handicapped parking space in the Mall.
I once, many years ago, parked in front of a vacant building near Six Flags Over Texas. The business which had gone bankrupt had moved. The no-parking signs Terry assumed were no longer applicable. I figured, "How is a non-existent business going to be hurt by my parking in front of it?"
Well, you can guess what happened next.
My car was towed.
It took several hours to locate the towing location, find cash to pay the $200 fine, get a taxi to drive me there. Wait forever for them to find my car on their vast lot in the dark and drive home with my wife and kids fuming over my stupidity.
So you see, I still think somewhere in my pea-sized brain that I was right.
Practically speaking, I was disabused of that notion.
I don't know which was worse, having to pay cash for my own car to be towed from in front of a vacant building--or--thinking I was in the right.
If I were a different sort of person, a NORMAL one, these kinds of things would never happen to me. Worse still, I don't seem to learn my lesson. Ever.
I have seen those tables, they have a blue/white wheelchair symbol in the middle of the table off to the side so wheelchairs don't have to push through tables crowded with nondisabled. I am disabled, cane, walker, wheelchair depending on how I am feeling. I have been disabled for 10 years. Not every place has such a table. I prefer booths, but sometimes only chair/tables work for me.
I have to admit that many people selfishly disregard the parking spaces, use the stall for those with wheelchairs because no one at the time is there and then spitting out a perjorative when they see my waiting (remember I can't use the nondisabled ones that open up before that), don't have doors that automatically open (not required by law or grandfathered in), etc. It does get me in ahead of people waiting to get into theaters, but some people glare at me.
I live in a state that is fairly up to par accommodating disabled people, but as we travel I find out soon enough which ones are behind the times. Now we travel with an RV so I don't have to depend on local laws to use the restroom with my wheelchair. (Yes, RVs can be built to accommodate wheelchairs, etc.)
My perspective about disabled accommodations has changed a great deal since I joined that group. I would give almost anything to be out of it.
Unfortunately, you might have been the fifth person that day that disregarded an accommodation law for that person and they had to wait and hold it until the disabled stall opened up (they learn not to wait too long before going to the restroom), or have to park a block away because non-disabled people have used the spots using tags assigned to truly disabled relatives that are not with them at the time or have even been dead for 3 years.
I apologize for that person, moralistic though they may be, it actually may be through personal experience helping a disabled loved one or friend.
I knew a guy who lost his legs in Vietnam who worked with me in law enforcement on the radio. He would check plates on people parked in disabled spots and then roll un to the drive when they came back and checked to see if they were the tag holder, if not, ticket time, He did a PSA too. Everybody thinks, I just be in their a minute and before you know it, it's half an hour. A local government official in this area was caught using his deceased wife's tag after she had been dead for 2 years, every day he used it because it was free parking. He made over $120,000 a year...
Unfortunately, you might have been the fifth person that day that disregarded an accommodation law for that person and they had to wait and hold it until the disabled stall opened up.....Blondie
I worked with a guy like that..
I went to the police station with him, to pay one of his parking tickets..
The police parking lot was practically empty..
Guess Where He Decides to Park?
And..He does it right in front of a Cop!..
"We Have An Idiot In Progress."
I sometimes think I'm too dumb to draw a breath and yet I'm surrounded by peers.
Right now I'm sitting at a non-handicap table watching healthy people all around me sitting--you know where!
If I had a cane and a black hat with a silver band, I know what I'd do!
Nice piece, Terry. I don't have an agenda. I just enjoy your writing.
Right now I'm sitting at a non-handicap table watching healthy people all around me sitting--you know where!....TW
You`re The Guy Doing the Right Thing....So..
OK, as a followup, I am disabled and have a disabled parking placard, but I don't use a wheelchair. I parked yesterday in the parking garage at work and parked in one of the parking spaces that are wider, specifically for those with wheelchairs. I was a bit outside the lines, too. I got a ticket from the security staff!
LOL, I thought of Terry and this post.