Systemic stupor by Trevor Plumbly

Manna from heaven A recent news report from Canberra announced that some lucky Aussies could now get their groceries delivered by drone. To add a bit of credence to the piece, they included an interview with a grateful mother, who seemed to regard this technological turd as a lifeline. I’d like to say my heart went out to the poor creature, but it didn’t; I find that she’s rather pathetic compared to the women who work at life, instead of sitting around and expecting it to arrive. Millions of women cope with… Read More

Warriors and wimps by Trevor Plumbly

Somebody remarked that when you’re blind you are ‘one step away from the edge of the world’. It sounds a bit dramatic, but for those of us who faced sight loss somewhat late in life there’s a fair bit of truth in it. It’s not just tripping over the stuff that you swear somebody left in the way, there’s the mental hurdles: disbelief, adjustment and final acceptance are pretty tough to absorb, along with having to convert once instinctive actions into calculated steps. Coping is, of course, the key, and I reckon… Read More

The other woman by Trevor Plumbly

The siren’s song Alexa is a ‘Smart Speaker’, an innocent looking cylinder about a foot tall and capable of making the fiddly bits of daily routine a breeze. We blindies are suckers for this sort of stuff; anything that does our fumbling round for us is always welcome. She allowed me to access books and music without the threat of a wrongly pressed button or incorrect spelling. But blindness breeds doubt, and a dependence on gadgets disturbs me. I’ve always had a distrust of devices that do my thinking for me, what… Read More

Broken English by Trevor Plumbly

Bad language I notice that newsreaders, once lauded for their command of the English language, are becoming increasingly fond of sloppy Americanisms and tabloid phrasing, to the extent that deee!fence, oh!ffence and other bastardisations are creeping into common usage. When I question this, I am informed by those anxious to gallop past the more demanding aspects of the English language, that this is the ‘modern way’ and thus, ‘evolving’. It also means, according to those same champions of tortured terminology, that I am something of a dinosaur. I’m not ‘well-schooled’ in the… Read More

An eating disorder by Trevor Plumbly

Food for thought An increase in mishaps involving stained clothing along with the newly proven fallacy that ‘I can manage!’ has forced me to accept that a change of diet will be needed if I want to continue to eat in public. It’s not the quality of the food or the presentation; it’s the mechanics of the thing. The stuff’s perfectly OK left on the plate, but when I try to eat it, it seems reluctant to accept its final destination, preferring instead my shirtfront, lap or the table-top. Being blind, I’m… Read More