Wednesday, July 20, 2016

They See Me Rolling

I must have been sleepwalking again, because I literally don't remember anything that happened before class today. One of my theories is that since we've already been here 1.5 weeks (halfway?!), the parts of the days that are similar are blending together, thereby making them unmemorable. Anyhow, the rest of the day, by contrast, was much more interesting.

Remember on Monday how half the class was on wheelchairs for the morning chunk of class? Well, today it was my turn. Same as before, we had a list of tasks to accomplish, only today's tasks were much harder, if I say so myself. Of course I would say that on the day that I'm the one in the wheelchair, right? But something must have been more difficult, because nearly none of the tasks were completely accomplished. We ended up setting off a fire alarm at one point (courtesy of Jahnvi)! I even had to eat lunch in a wheelchair, which turned out...okay, astonishingly.

By the way, for anyone who still might think, "Oh, wheelchairs aren't too bad, you can still get a good workout every day just by moving around," you are, unfortunately, completely wrong. The first few minutes are like the honeymoon, if you want to think about this metaphorically. Wheeling around feels surprisingly easy and light, and it seems like one could get used to it. But then reality sets in, whether that means hitting some rough terrain or an uphill slope. Basically, the wheelchair/user relationship goes sour real quick; your hands start to feel like they could blister, your muscles start hurting, and you just want it all to end. Apparently, manual wheelchair users are especially susceptible to repetitive stress injuries - surprise, surprise! 

First lab we saw.
After saying a tearful goodbye to the wheelchairs following lunch (it was emotional, I swear - happy tears), we visited the on-campus prosthetic research lab, which presented some of the current projects they were working on: newer models of mechanized legs, giant treadmills and infrared cameras to track test get the idea. 

I appreciate the collectible Porsches.
That's Laney, on a sort of treadmill that can
measure forces from your legs.
Posing with important-looking equipment.
I'll use this paragraph to rant a bit: there are people in this world who are just a little bit confused on social norms. Sure, I respect them as human beings, but some people just don't know when to stop approaching someone who clearly does not appreciate them as the next person might. One of these such people is in my class. And for some odd reason, he has chosen to cling to me constantly: at meals, on car rides, during lectures - he even decided to come up to my room one time, creepily standing outside of my door and waving when my roommate came in. Believe me, I've tried to put up with it, but this point I'm completely done. I guess the grown-up thing to do is just to resolve the situation peacefully, so that is exactly what I plan to do tomorrow: just talk it out and set some clear boundaries. Rant over. I feel better already.

Nothing super important happened the rest of the day, so I suppose I'll just end it here. Oh, almost forgot: there'll be an open mic night on Friday, so I may or may not end up performing something...I guess we'll see.

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