Wooooo! It’s the first ever Necessary Evil content extravaganza! A whole ten years as a cripple! You know I’m going to exploit that for as many cheap clicks as I can! It’s time to have a fuckin’ partaaaaaaaaay!
Exploit it for a classic Necessary Evil depressing whinge post? One post?? Listen, clearly you’re all amateurs when it comes to commodifying your own personal tragedy for sad validation, so sit down and let the adults talk, OK? Think of this as just an introductory post to the exciting events we have coming up to commemorate The Night the Line Was Crossed. I have lived as an able bodied and disabled person. As an alcoholic and a lame, sober, party pooper. These changes weren’t completely correlated, but the causation is clear. It’s going to go to some pretty dark places, but I honestly believe the lasting impression will be one of lowkey inspiration. I will joke (constantly) – because I am British and incapable of serious emotional honesty for any long periods – but I do honestly believe my experience since that day in Urumqi, Xinjiang, China on 04/05/2013 is one worth telling. And, most importantly, it is worth many, many clicks. Don’t forget to like and subscribe.
First, let’s address that fat, middle aged white elephant in the room and shatter his spine: was it actually May the 4th 2013 when I was first disabled? This was slap bang in my drinking days, so it’s difficult to get exact information. Plus, I’m pretty sure the experience instilled in me a level of PTSD that, no matter how inebriated I was at the time (and I was likely extremely so) any really reliable memory of the moment is likely to always be out of reach. My body was found on May 4th 2013, unmoving and cold, splayed in a bush on the ground below my apartment’s open window. Eight floors below, to be clear. It’s unclear how long my body had lain there though, bent into uncoordinated shapes like a dropped packet of frozen oven chips. It wouldn’t have been until mid day that I was found, when a colleague will have investigated why I was so late for work. I haven’t spoken to that person for almost ten years now. It’s very possible that she has PTSD of her own that she’s also spent the last decade coming to terms with. There’s every chance that I could have jumped late at night on the 3rd of May though. So let’s say we’re actually celebrating a decade since I was first taken to Lanzhou Military General Hospital in Urumqi.
But enough about the incident itself. Coming up soon we’ll have an interview conducted by the actual journalist Kitty Aurora, which will cover all questions about the incident, and hopefully cover questions about my experience that I wouldn’t think about answering. Most importantly, it might guarantee some of the traffic that their previous piece on this blog garnered. I’m also going to dig up and post the full 130’000 memoir that I wrote in 2014-15 – ‘Wee and Poo and the NHS’. It was sent to multiple publishers at the time, and unanimously rejected. Because of shameful ableist bigotry? I couldn’t possibly say. But yes. It’s also an incredibly embarrassing piece of work, and posting it in full might be amongst the most embarrassing things I’ve done on this blog. Up there with naming Arctic Monkeys, Kings of Leon, ‘Sound of Silver’ and ‘Send Away the Tigers’ as better albums than ‘In Rainbows’ in 2007. But I stand by my decision to make this book available for the first time. I also stand by my decisions in 2007. Why? Because:
Not read the book in a long time. It might include a ten thousand word chapter on how much I love Radiohead. Having said that, written soon after the release of ‘King of Limbs’?? Unlikely…
Along with Kitty’s interview (cutting it pretty close considering you haven’t sent your finished write up to me yet, Kitty), I’m going to write a piece on what life as a disabled person has been like these past ten years. I’ll be ignoring the incident itself entirely and talking exclusively about how losing bodily control and functions has affected my life and my outlook. It’ll be a generally positive read, I promise.
Firstly though, of course, there’s going to be a motherfucking music list! Because I will never stray to far from my bread and butter! I thought about the concept of greatest albums of my disability – to keep it all firmly within my wheelhouse – but I’ve kind of already done that. You freaks already have the best albums of 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022, can’t you lazy pricks just put them in some sort of list? Or, if you’re too lazy to even do that, I already kinda freaking did that a couple of years back! And, erm, I also did the retrospective best album from each year of my life? You can also look at that? I’ve written a lot of lists on this blog. So we’re doing the best songs of my disability, ranked. Because it seems that’s the only thing I’ve not already done. Not linked to my disability, or my recovery, just the best and biggest bangers of the last ten years. Or sometimes they will be related. I dunno, it’s my fucking list, piss off
Because, no matter how dark some of the subjects I’ll be necessitated to discuss will be, no matter the lows that will have to be touched upon, the fact of the matter is I am here. I’m on my way to be qualified at Level 3 in OISC despite having no knowledge of immigration law a decade ago; I work at a refugee charity and give life altering support to hundreds of people every year, I got freaking married (and, ahem, divorced) in that decade, I’ve felt comfortable enough to write six hundred and seventy nine posts on this stupid blog that nobody reads. I know that I always ‘joke’ about the one thousandth post being me livestreaming my own suicide, but right now I can saw with certainty that isn’t going to be the case. Seriously? It’ll probably be another Manic Street Preachers list, those things do numbers.
Thanks to everyone, you know who you are. I’m not a hero, I just survived. You’re all heroes for making that survival possible.