Williamsburg

The opposite of nostalgia…

Major accident directly in front of my building. Brought back lots of bad memories. All these people in passing cars slowing down and glaring at ME as if I somehow caused it, doesn’t help matters. Neither does the fact that TODAY – April 26 – marks ten years since the accident that very nearly took my life.

The resemblance between the two crashes (or at least the damage done in them) was uncanny… or should I say unsettling. The fact that I came within seconds of causing my own death on a random Sunday evening on a road in Coal Township, Pa – a mere thousand yards from my home at the time… by obeying all traffic laws to the letter. The reward for my pain and suffering: loss of license, loss of insurance, loss of freedom and, worst of all, loss of the first thing I ever outright owned.

So, while at least one OPD officer was on hand interviewing participants in today’s incident. At no point did anyone bother to ask ME what happened at mine, in fact, the first thing the responding officer said to me was: “yeah, I figured it would be you. Every time there’s an accident in this city. YOU are the who caused it.”

I take that back, he DID ask what happened, and his partner cut him off: “‘Green?’ You mean ‘green’ like graaaaaassss or RED like an aaaaaappulllllll?”

“I’m a college graduate – that means I graduated from Kindergarten too.”

“DON’T YOU TALK TO ME LIKE THAT, YOU STUPID MOTHERF-”

At this point, the first cop pulled his hot-headed partner away before he could punch me, but just as he was about to get back to interviewing me, a woman cut him off shouting: “I saw it. I saw the whole thing. He did it. He caused the whole thing” and I didn’t see either officer again for another six hours (for six seconds at the hospital, he looked down at me, shrugged and said “well, you know you’re guilty” and left).

Yep, since I never talked to them (or the newspaper [link not found] which declared me guilty of “causing an accident on SR-61”) that left only one choice: Tell it to the judge… except my dad’s attorney stopped me from entering the courtroom and said: “face it, YOU caused the accident, so rather than go in there and lose – which you will – you will instead plead ‘no contest’ so I can work on more important cases.” Fuck you too.

Sorry, that concludes my story, which is convenient since the trolley I was waiting for has arrived. I have not looked up whether today’s story made the paper or not, but the first thing the driver said when she opened the door was: “damn, that’s the second accident at this exact spot this week. I swear this place is cursed…”

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Categories: adventures, coal region, florida, I-Ride Trolley, Orlando, Pennsylvania, transportation, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Cold coffee blues

So, I’m having a stressful evening mentally. I was going to get coffee at the Wawa on I-Drive to distract myself, but I decided self-care was more important. The lights of traffic outside (at 8pm no less) were blindingly bright (streetlights are pretty much non-existent in my area) and the mobile concerts were almost deafening at times, #sensoryhell neither helps with my perpetual headache so I came back inside.

Besides, LAST time I went to Wawa, I was forced to figure out how to react to someone sending this page a message about my personal profile being “banned” from an unspecified page (a kind of weird thing to do, plus it took me two and a half days to figure out which one).

The plus side is, I have more money for rent and bills. Oh, and I can still go out tomorrow morning if I really wanted to…

Categories: adventures, Autism, florida, Orlando, ramblings, sensory processing disorder, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Battle of the bans

Yesterday, my Facebook page received a rather rude pm about it’s author being “banned” from an unspecified page, presumably for having an opinion of some sort (perish the thought).

That isn’t what bothers me, but what DOES is that I was probably supposed to feel something: mad, sad, guilty or like I was being “punished” for some vaguely described crime… but I didn’t.

I simply stood there for a moment in the middle of the Wawa with my newly acquired coffee in hand like “okay, that was petty, but why is she sending it to my page?

I know she sent it for a REASON (however petty), and I knew I was supposed to react a certain way… but I didn’t. Am I cold, unfeeling or is ennui a viable option? I did send a cursory response when I got back to the apartment roughly 20 minutes later, but I was in too good of a mood to argue with her.

I was going to send her message at 9:35am (12 hours after the instantaneous response that I never read) but decided to simply delete it instead. I am 38 years old. Like it or not, I’m an “adult” now.

Thanks for reading this. I didn’t intend to go on so long, I just really needed to get this out of my system. Servus.

 

Update: We have another cold front passing through Orlando this week. So, I’m having a hot coffee, so far, nobody has “banned” either me and my “negative and insulting comments” or my overly positive Autism affirming page from anything… yet. (12/10/18)

 

Categories: adventures, Autism, entertainment, florida, Internet\FB, Orlando, ramblings, Williamsburg | 1 Comment

Live blog: Michael in Central Florida

1:12pm – Phone is charged, so I check the forecast on TWC app: Rain chance is negligible, but the winds have strengthen a bit, so I grab a light windbreaker and my hat and go downstairs to wait for the bus. As I’m waiting, a light rain begins to fall…

1:33pm – arrive at the bus stop outside the Publix at Regency Center. The rain has now stopped, and I am able to take some pictures of some ibis feeding in the wet ground near the pond before going inside the nearby McDonalds. Oh, and the new mystery store they just built next to Freddy’s is another Starbucks so yah… I guess.

2:19pm – leave Publix to find it is once again raining lightly, but, as I am waiting there, it slowly gets heavier and is a full-fledged downpour by the time we reach SeaWorld.

2:45pm – Did I mention, my umbrella was back at the unit? Because it was, and I’m now soaking wet… and so are my groceries, but at least, we’re inside as the rain slowly winds down outside. Not sure if standard a summer storm or an early “feeder band” (landfall in Florida is still 2 days away).

3:30pm – TWC is reporting that Gov. Rick Scott has issued a “State of Emergency” for all of Northern Florida. Mandatory evacuations are ordered for three counties along the Gulf Coast.

4pm – National Hurricane Center is reporting that Storm Surge/Hurricane warnings have been issued for Florida’s Gulf Coast stretching to the Alabama border (from there west is a Tropical Storm Warning). Rainfall totals along the Northern Gulf Coast are expected to be between 4-8” (whereas Orlando, which is not expected to be hit directly, will get 2-3”)

4:30pm – FSU closes its Tallahassee and Panama City campuses in advance of the storm.

7pm – No new warnings/watches, and rainfall is still predicted to be between 4-8” in Northern Florida/Southern Georgia with heavier hit areas could get as much as 12”.

9:05pm – moderate rain is back, but it’s expected to stop again by midnight. You’ll forgive me if I don’t feel like staying up to confirm this… right?

Categories: florida, hurricanes, news, North Florida, Orlando, weather, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Photo: The hardest thing I did all summer

This shot actually was extremely difficult for me to take. As I never made it across the street to the Panera Bread visible behind the upper text. I tried going in… but couldn’t. I did manage to cross the side street the driver was coming out of (twice actually), there is a nondescript marker near where I was sitting on the median that afternoon which made it harder for me.

I was supposed to come out here with my attorney about three weeks ago to take “evidential photos.” I told him I couldn’t do it, and judging by my reaction today, I was 100% right.

On the plus side, PSL are back in season…

Categories: adventures, florida, I-Ride Trolley, Orlando, transportation, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Three weeks out

June 23, 2018 – I was with my mom and brother in Disney or most of this week (where I couldn’t take any photos because I couldn’t steady my camera without use of my left arm), so I don’t have an exact arrival date. But, as soon as I returned on Saturday, I found a letter from Florida Blue: “Our independent panel of medical experts have reviewed all documents associated with your claim and determined that it DOES NOT meet the criteria for a medical emergency.”

Wait, getting hit by a fucking car is “not a medical emergency?”

“…therefore, neither Florida Blue nor any of its subsidiaries are liable for any payments associated wit your claim.”

But don’t forget to keep paying us – that’s right, I have to pay them to not do the one thing I overpay (due to an error on their part but claim it’s MY fault for “not catching it sooner”) them to do

June 25, 2018 – I finally got the nerve to call the lawyer the physical therapist gave me, and he has tentatively offered to take my case. I meet him at the IPM offices on Thurs, which is good since I can show him the rejection letter from Florida Blue.

June 27, 2018 – Got a call this morning from an “unavailable number” who turned out to be the “Billing and Payment Office” at ORMC informing me that my insurance is not paying for my Emergency stay but SOMEONE is…and I get the distinct feeling I don’t want to ask who that “someone” is (especially since I was the one on the other end of their message).

If only, there was a way to prepay into an account in the event that something like this happened to me… oh, I do? Tough luck, kid, here’s your bill. Yes, you HAVE to pay it.

Categories: adventures, Advocacy\volunteer, florida, Health, healthcare, insurance, Orlando, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Slightly better Saturday

4:23am – I thought being moved up to the surgical suites would make the rest of my night quieter, but, no, there were still people pacing up and down the hall, staff laughing at the nearby nursing station and machines making various noises.

In fact, if I got out of bed to use the restroom and an ear-piercing alarm goes off so now a half-dozen (young female) nurses know I have to pee: “That’s why we have that pitcher next to your bed. Just go, we’ll turn it off.”

4:43am – I finally get my pants back up and my belt redone (neither task is easy to do one handed), and as soon as I’m back into the bed and almost asleep, a female Orderly comes in to clean the bathroom.

7:30am – Daylight.

Also, the time I hear the door to the room open and Dr. McDreamy from whatever that show was called walks in. He’s a surgeon, he’s gone over my reports and has determined I don’t need surgery after all. However, he still needed to hear a comprehensive medical history, a complete report on what caused the crash, a full list of symptoms (tbf, the pain had gone down noticeably overnight). He tells me “I’m not releasing you today” and leaves.

8:37am – A male Orderly comes in holding what turned out to be a standard Continental breakfast, and just as I’ve almost pulled myself up to an eating position… the NT comes in, takes my temperature, gives me a pain pill and checks my blu-presser: “Eh, eeeezzz still no good, but maybe better. 143/105.”

9:23am – Regular floor Nurse arrives (not the one from earlier). She tells my vitals, while “not good” appear to have “stabilized,” but the doctor said I’m “most likely” staying overnight again for “continued observation.”

10:29am – the exact same nurse walks in, and immediately asks: “What the hell are you still doing here? You were discharged over an hour ago.”

12:29pm – Yes, I am still here, but I just finished the saddest “Turkey Club” since my mom packed my lunch in the 4th grade, but at least, I got to eat it sitting up. I’m told the discharge papers should be ready any time now.

As I force myself out of the chair, I see a familiar chocolate colored boy in a tight, black shirt ambling down the hallway before the door next to mine slams. Apparently, you can have the same highlight twice on the same trip. Who knew?

1:15pm – The nurse comes back in with a copy of my discharge paper which she rather quickly goes over with me. No weight on shoulder, contact primary for folo in 5-7 days, pills every four hours… when I asked when the cab was coming to get me, she just looked at me blankly. Why not just drive my own car back? Oh right…

2:29pm – The nurse just happened to be outside my room (walking an elderly patient) when her cell phone rings telling her the cab was “en route” and would arrive shortly so she had to quickly (or as “quickly” as hospital staff move) her patient back to her room and get a wheelchair out of the closet at the end of the hall for a leisurely trip down to the lobby.

2:43pm – Finally arrive at the main entrance where, yes, a cab was already waiting. Surprisingly enough, the driver was friendly and managed to get me back to Williamsburg in decent time, despite “heavier than normal” afternoon traffic.

I get out of his vehicle, go up to the unit, open the door and see the time on the oven was… 3:15pm.

Categories: florida, Health, healthcare, Kissimmee, Orlando, Osceola Regional Medical Center (ORMC), Williamsburg | 1 Comment

Two sides, same coin

My dishwasher has been out of commission for the past week or so, but they finally sent someone up to “fix” it this afternoon – and by “fix” I mean they ran half an empty cycle before deciding it was “good enough” for me to use (even though that’s exactly what they did LAST time I reported this and obviously, it worked because I reported it again).

Since my dishwasher was out of service, I have been forced to hand wash my dishes, so I didn’t have a huge reserve available for a test load. However, I did it anyway, but since I hate the amount of noise it makes when it’s running so I went out to eat at the Golden Corral on I-Drive (in the plaza as Cici’s and 1-2-3 Dollar).

Anyway, I leave the apartment and when the trolley arrives, I sit in the front row behind the driver and across from a young family visiting from DC who were complaining that their 2yo daughter couldn’t get on any rides at the Magic Kingdom.

“Come on, you think Disney, you think ‘KIDS.’ So, of course, I took my kids (ages 2 and 1.5) with me, but the only ride they were tall enough to ride was fricken Dumbo. I’m sooo glad we paid all that money to get into a KIDS park without any kids rides. Grrr, what a rip-off (neglecting to mention that both of his kids got in free, and that height requirements for all rides are easily found online). We’re going to take the trolley to Discovery Zone or SeaWorld tomorrow afternoon – at least THEY have kids’ rides.”

“Actually, it’s Discovery COVE, and it’s a fairly far walk from the nearest troll-”

Suddenly, he leans forward and taps the driver on the shoulder, he then gestures towards me and says:

“Buddy here’s got a question for you.”

“Wait, I do? I was trying to-”

“No, no, buddy, it’s okay. You’re allowed to ask questions here. Go on, I got his attention for you.”

“What ‘question?’ I don’t HAVE a ‘question.’ Why do I need to come up with a question I don’t have to ask the driver when I was trying to tell you about Discovery Cove? Then he can answer the question you are forcing me to come up with, so you can justify getting his attention, so I can tell you more about SeaWorld and Discovery Cove.”

That’s the point when his real message finally hit me. Fortunately, because I’m crazy and stupid, he gave a nice summary of his ordeal…

“God, buddy, what is your problem? I’m trying to be NICE to you here, you freakin’ jerk.”

Am I your “buddy” or am I a “freakin’ jerk,” make up your mind? However, I have been doing this blog long enough to know “what is your problem” is an insult. Period. I can give a wonderful explanation of Aspergers’ and Autism completely on the fly (okay, not really), but it would invariably fall on deaf ears because no presumably smart and/or sane person likes (as a far blunter observer once put it) “being lectured by crazy-ass retards.”

The Golden Corral is stop 31, and when I got off “buddy” was his buddy again. Also, crossing southern I-Drive can be tricky at times, but I managed to get across pretty easily. The parking lot was unusually full, there was no line to get into the restaurant nor did I have any particular trouble finding a table.

I’m never sure if I’m supposed to wait for my server to stop by and “sign” my check or just go up to the buffet, but since the former is usually easier, that’s the one I chose. I came back to my booth and the check was signed so all was good.

She came back as I was eating to find out if I wanted another drink which I declined, but instead of going away, she stepped closer, taking my plate, asking what kind it was and I repeated I “wasn’t ready” for another drink at which point she makes a sassy comment about “I was asking for next time” and storms off as if I did something wrong (or at least not intentionally).

I go up to get my second (and last) round of food. I am nearly finished, and had opened my wallet to see if I had enough to give her a tip when I hear a sharp: “You want another root beer?”

I tried to tell her “no” because I was busy, but instead of going away, she comes right up to my table, essentially blocking me in and says “I couldn’t hear you from back there. What did you need again?”

“I’m trying to determine if I have enough money for a tip, so I can leave the restaurant without getting another drink.”

“Oh, let me see that… Oh, ’21.01’ that would make a ten percent tip $2, a fifteen percent tip $3 or a twenty percent tip $4. You never answered me if you wanted another root beer or not.”

Apparently, I’m an idiot.

“Well since I don’t have $4 on me, I guess I might as well give her 15%. Yes, I already answered your question: I said I needed to ‘figure out your tip so I can leave your store without getting another drink.’”

“There is something seriously WRONG with you,” she said as if I couldn’t hear her. “Who the hell gets scared by someone asking for another drink from four tables away?”

It was technically TWO, and she were saying it rather loudly – just as she had the “questions” poste above. At least she got out of my way to “ask” them. It wasn’t until I got the first exit door that I realized the irony of this evening’s conversations.

Fortunately, when I went to the discount grocery store next door, the cashier barely spoke to me. She coldly rung up my order, and we didn’t talk. It was quite refreshing actually… kind of like coming back to mostly clean dishes.

Categories: adventures, Advocacy\volunteer, Autism, florida, Orlando, sensory processing disorder, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

Fire Sprinkler Inspection Day

Today is “Fire Sprinkler Inspection Day” at Sea Isle (required by law for all apartment complexes in Florida). The fire Marshal, apartment manager and maintenance supervisor come around to poke around the apartment – including the closets 😮 – to check smoke detectors and see if you have the right number of fire sprinklers in your unit.

I can hear the alarms getting louder, so they must be coming soon. I HATE the alarms they’re extremely loud and the flashing lights give me a headache. At least this time I won’t be in the shower…

Fire Marshal,” he shouted over the roar of the water. “You have less than one minute to open this door before I knock it the fuck down!

Back to the present, I’ve been hanging out on the balcony with headphones on for the past hour as the noise from the other buildings has gotten steadily louder.

I think they left now, but it was 15-20 minutes of pure TERROR while they were doing my section of the building as even with headphones the noise was absolutely deafening.

Fortunately, I wasn’t naked this time (as my balcony overlooks the main walkway through the complex). However, I still managed to make a fool of myself in front of the Fire Marshal and the maintenance woman when I was blinded by the flashing lights AND doubled over in pain from the noise (as jolting up when they knocked on my neighbor‘s door threw the earbuds out of my ears leaving my ears unprotected). I have no idea how they do that without earplugs.

Oh, and the inspection of my unit itself took less than a full minute so there was that…

Categories: Autism, florida, Orlando, sensory processing disorder, Williamsburg | 1 Comment

“Buddy, ya mad psyc elf”

Did that headline make sense to you?

Good, that makes TWO of us. I was thinking of that annoying Will Ferrell movie, but, sadly, it had nothing to do with that abomination.

I was going out to buy milk from the 7-11 catty-corner from my apartment. That was my only intention for this humid fall night – nefarious or otherwise… and, yes, I’ll get to that later in this essay, but first some context…

It was 7:45pm, and, due to the quaint anachronism known as “Daylight Saving Time,” it was practically pitch black out there save for oncoming traffic (which are extra dangerous for me due to my having a 1.5 second processing delay – which can be absolutely deadly as a pedestrian), a couple of flickering/sparsely placed streetlights and the signs on top of the two hotels – plus the aforementioned convenience on the other side of the extremely busy intersection.

That is stressful enough for me under normal conditions (but is far better than being out in the day’s heat), but did I mention that I also had to deal with the deafening noise of a rapidly approaching fire truck with horns blaring and sirens at FULL VOLUME.

I get it – it’s an actual emergency, but it doesn’t have to stop an inch behind me blaring said horns directly into my ears while I’m in the middle of a busy intersection with the pedestrian signal up (it was also the very thing I was trying to avoid so, congrats, mission accomplished).

This caused me to jump 3 feet in the air and freeze temporarily while their sirens were still going and now they were shouting “MOVE YOUR (horn)ING ASS (double horn), YOU (horn)ING RETARDED ASS(horn)!!!”

“Shit. God damnit, that hurts,” I said holding my ears in pain as I tried to continue crossing the street while the fire truck nearly clipped me as it shot off behind me.

“Buddy, up ya mad psycic elf,” this guy in a black and grey hoodie said passing me from behind, I could barely hear over the ringing in my ears.

“HEY, BUDDY,” he said repeating it for me impatiently. “I SAID ‘YOU’RE OFF YOUR MEDS AGAIN, YOU FUCKING PSYCHOPATH!!!’”

That is both helpful and not helpful at the same time – especially since I once again only caught half of it.

“God damnit,” I said stepping onto the sidewalk, “that horn was loud and an inch away from my ear. What the hell is wrong with them? Fu…ow. Seriously.”

“I SAID ‘SHUT UP, YOU ARE A FUCKING LUNATIC! GET IN THERE (pointing to the CVS on the corner), BUY YOUR MEDS AND GET THE FUCK OUTTA MY TOWN, YOU RETARDED ASSHOLE!!”

That I sort of understood, but as I tried to work it through in my head, I didn’t realize I was repeating everything I was saying out loud.

MASS SHOOTER!”

“MASS SHOOTER?!! WHERE,” I shouted looking around frantically for a place to hide. Of course, there wasn’t so much as a bush in a 100-foot radius, so I looked like a madman to 100s of oncoming cars.

YOU ARE,” he said flipping me off as he finally disappearing somewhere into the darkness.  “YOU GOD-DAMNED RETARDED LUNATIC!”

Sure, he was gone… but what if he came back later in my trip? I wondered as I continued to walk towards my destination, my body still shaking as I entered the convenience store, but, hey, at least, my hearing was starting to come back…

Categories: adventures, Advocacy\volunteer, Autism, florida, Orlando, sensory processing disorder, Williamsburg | Leave a comment

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