You’ve Got to Laugh Sometimes: ABAPITA Moments

There’s a wonderful expression in the blindness community: ABAPITA. That stands for “Ain’t blindness a pain in the anatomy.” Dialogue Magazine has carried a column by this name since the mid 1960’s. It sums up those experiences that are both frustrating and funny as blind and visually impaired folks encounter a sighted world and vice versa.

Here a few of a series of stories that our writers came up with:

 

Kathie shares:

My guide dog and I were greeting at a free breakfast for Christmas at a local restaurant staffed by volunteers. Greeter was the best job for us so we stood welcoming folks in and I waved my coffee mug toward the tables and told people to have a seat and they’d be served soon. The Christmas spirit was alive and well. One homeless guy passed by me on his way to a table and suddenly I heard a plop in my coffee mug. I’m sure my mouth was hanging open for a few seconds as I tried to figure out what was that? Then it dawned on me: this homeless man figured I needed a quarter worse than he did and had given it in my cup. The image of a blind beggar complete with a cup had triggered his charitable instincts. I hope I pulled together soon enough to say thank you, but I’m not sure. I was so flabbergasted. Hard to believe a university staff member was speechless, but I was. ABAPITA!

 

Ericka writes:

I was having some problems one weekend that warranted going to the ER. When I got into the room and finally saw the doctor, she noticed I came all the way from Kenosha Wisconsin since the ER was in Monroe, which is a couple hours away. Without thinking (she knew I was visually impaired because she read the chart), she asked, “Did you drive over here? That’s a long distance!” I simply couldn’t help but start laughing, and I went to the cane along the wall and picked it up. We both laughed so hard. ABAPITA!

Dan shares: Rummaging About

There was a time in my life when because of strong legs, I didn’t need wheels. To get where I wanted to go, I simply took up running. Because of my passion for bargains, this even included running to rummage sales. With my eyes not good enough to earn a driver’s license, this made sense to me. You just do what you’ve got to do in my unique acuity world.  Though this never resulted in peril, it did raise an awkward inquisition on one occasion.

During a daily jog, I encountered the mother lode of rummage sales. The old timer hosting this sale had everything I needed, especially fishing gear. I quickly grabbed up a horde of rods, reels, tackle boxes, lures, and even a huge net. When about to leave, I spotted a two wheel dolly, or heavy-load handcart, as some call them. I just happened to need one and the price was right.

With armloads of fishing gear and a dolly being pulled alongside me, I now headed home. After walking several blocks, a car pulled up beside me. Stopping in silence, I pondered whether I was about to be robbed or simply asked for directions. Suddenly, the driver poked his head out the car window and laughingly proclaimed, “Man oh man, I’m not sure where you are headed for fishing, yet I’d sure like to see what you come back with!” Following this joking remark, he hit the gas pedal and headed down the road. While now staring at the dolly, I tried reckoning with this comical portrayal of mine. Finally overcoming this moment of embarrassment, a thought then occurred to me. Perhaps if that big one doesn’t get away in the future, this cart might indeed really come in handy on my next fishing trip.  When it comes to either rummaging or fishing, there is always hope. ABAPITA!

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Now it’s your turn. Send your ABAPITA moments to Kathie at schneiks@uwec.edu and more will be shared. Return to The Outlook From Here in the coming weeks for more funny moments!

Learn more about our writers on the Who We Are page.

Featured image is a black and white photo of an embarassed woman with her hand over her eyes as she laughs. Relations is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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2 thoughts on “You’ve Got to Laugh Sometimes: ABAPITA Moments

  1. Pingback: The Good Life at Sixty-six | kathiecomments

  2. Pingback: The Good Life at Sixty-six | Display Braille Seller Online

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