Mike ErvinThere are many developmental phases cripples go through in our desperate attempt to survive criippledom. You can’t always tell that you’re in one of these phases when you’re actually in it. Sometimes it is only clear in retrospect. Some cripples find a comfortable niche in one of these phases and never come out of it. But I can see where I’ve been through a few of them myself, such as:

The Basketball Phase: This is where cripples immerse themselves in cripple basketball. I entered this phase as a kid but didn’t last very long in this phase because I sucked at playing basketball. It was crushing at the time, but I now consider that to be a blessing because if I had been even remotely good at playing basketball, I’m sure I would have dedicated myself to cripple basketball forever, dribbling my blues away. But instead I entered:

The Bootstraps Phase: I entered this phase when I was a teenager. Like all teenagers, I dreamed of the day when I would get the hell out of my parents’ house and move into my own sweet swingin’ playboy bachelor pad! And that day was coming soon, baby! But eventually I slammed head-on into the sobering reality that because I was crippled, being a swingin’ playboy bachelor was going to be super expensive. Motorized wheelchairs and lift-equipped cripple vans didn’t grow on trees, you know. And I no longer would have mom’s free butt wiping services. I’d have to pay for all that stuff myself. There was only one solution. I had to dedicate myself to making a boatload of money.

It’s a cold world out there for a cripple trying to make it on your own, but it’s a whole lot warmer when you’re insulated by several layers of cash. But there was a big whopping flaw in this plan. My one and only vocational goal was to be a poet. Yes sir, I was going to be the greatest poet in the history of poetry. I was going to win the Nobel Poetry Prize in a landslide! But there