DRMacIver's Notebook

You’re walking wrong

You’re walking wrong

This started out life as an extended metaphor for how we treat people’s support mechanisms in general, but I think it works pretty well on a literal reading too.

Note that I am essentially able-bodied (minor caveats only), but I did check this post with a cane user before publishing it.

A: Hey, you over there, the one walking! You’re doing it wrong.

B: Excuse me?

A: You’re using a cane! You shouldn’t do that!

B: …

A: You should be walking with your own two feet, like a normal person!

B: I will fall over if I do that.

A: Have you tried?

B: Yes. I fell over.

A: Maybe you should try harder?

B: That would cause me to fall over harder.

A: You just need more practice! The problem is, you’re using the cane as a crutch.

B: Well, technically a cane and a crutch are different assistive devices. You see a crutch-

A: I mean you’re using your cane to support your weight.

B: It’s more about stability, but yes that’s what it’s for.

A: You should be using your legs to do that!

B: I literally can’t. I have a torn ligament in my ankle. It will not hold my weight properly.

A: That’s no excuse. You should fix that then!

B: I am on a waiting list for surgery, yes.

A: Well if you know how to fix it, why are you using that cane?

B: Because I haven’t had the surgery yet and I need to walk now.

A: But what if your cane is made with conflict minerals?

B: Uh, is it?

A: I don’t know, did you even check?

B: Not really, no. Who made your shoes?

A: (waves hand dismissively) oh who cares about that? Everyone wears shoes. You’re wearing shoes. But your cane might be made with conflict minerals, and I don’t have one of those.

B: In the grand scheme of things I don’t think canes are a significant contributor to global conflict.

A: But it’s all of our responsibility to care about these things! You should be more responsible in how you walk.

B: OK. If we’re all responsible, would you like to pay for me to be able to have my surgery sooner?

A: No, it’s your responsibility to do that too.

B: …

A: Anyway, have you tried yoga?