Archive for January, 2012

Technical Aids Tips und Tricks XLVIII

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

I am currently testing a technical aid, it is a

Knife Holder

of the company www.Mehal.de

This holder has been developed mainly for quadriplegics like me with limited or no finger function.
You notice immediately that this part has been built by insiders, it has been really well-thought on.

The knife is fixed at the hand adaption. The holder is dishwasher safe.

There is no finger function necessary to use it.

I was convinced by the knife holder already after the first test.
With the weight of your own arm only you have already a strong pressure with the knife on the evenly to be sliced test objects, in this case out of pork.
The cutting could be done without effort.

My first test was not representative yet because thanks to the cooking skills of my wife the test samples to be cut were tender pieces of pork fillet.

Now I was in a dilemma: To complete the test series I had to try to cut tough meat as well!!!

To order a steak “well done” is against my nature, I am not a Botswanian who empirically puts a steak 20 minutes on the barbecue until it is dead for the 2nd time.

I decided that it wasn’t necessary to test if it would be possible to cut a tough piece of meat with the special knife or not. I wouldn’t like to eat it then anyway.

An appointment in the test lab “Charisma” in Frankfurt was made to come to a final conclusion.

As you can see on the picture the test object in this case was a beef steak with fried onions, fried potatoes and for the better gliding of the knife, a little herb butter.

The cutting of the meat was done extraordinarily well, I didn’t expect that.

The knife is very sharp, and the knife holder convinces all along the line.

It has to be decided on an individual basis to what extent the purchase of this technical aid makes sense.

I am convinced by this technical aid.

Unfortunately it doesn’t have a medical device number, thus only suitable for self-payers, whereas the price is absolutely fair.

 

Have a look at the older blogpost with my self-developed electric

Tetra-Spaghetti-Fork

(Click here for blogpost with video) ;-)

Translator BL

Eigude Shame Part XXII

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Every now and then ones mind needs a bit of culture… might it be tickets for the opera, the ballet, a drama or a trash metal concert, the purchase of a ticket for wheelers always can be very difficult and different at any time you’ll try it. You have to take this sportingly, otherwise only psychotropic drugs may help.

In earlier days you went to the ticket center, placed the money on the desk and you got your ticket, or you didn’t because the event was sold out already. To manage this online wasn’t a problem either.
Next time when you are ordering a ticket online try to search for a ticket for wheelers…

Forget about ordering!!!

Nearly every time the tickets for wheelers are sold by the promoter of the event. What a madness!!!
The reason is a mystery and they probably don’t know why themselves.
Probably it was like this ever since.

At some concerts the friendly mate of the ticket center is able to organize the tickets at the promoter. Then you’re on with only two phone calls, one email, an online transfer of the payment and the hope for delivery of the ticket by mail. If you ordered an additional ticket for your “escort” it means to cross the fingers twice.

Alternatively the ticket or call center provides you with a phone number of the promoter of that event. With a little bit of luck they run their own ticket shop and you reach an arrangement quickly.
If the phone number belongs to the managing director the procedure may take a little time, but you should appreciate that this guy also has other things to do. Razzing him a bit doesn’t harm…

Till now I always managed to get a ticket anyway if the concert tickets weren’t sold out before, but slowly even I get mad…

Project: wheelchair ticket for Sunrise Avenue

Fairytale gone bad!!!

(song title, Sunrise Avenue)

When calling the official ticket center I was redirected to a cell phone number. That mate gave me another extension number. When calling, a cell phone again, I was told that the mailbox is occupied completely, great…! Unusually I got a callback of the managing director himself, he told me that there were tickets available and gave me an email address: tickets@***.de.

During weeks I wrote emails which weren’t answered at all. Meanwhile my pulse went up, so I contacted the band Sunrise Avenue directly on the 6th of January (the email address was posted on the official website of the band) and called attention for the grievance that I was ignored totally.

Today we have the 26th of January and I haven’t got any reply from them either yet. Well, it’s understandable and comprehensible that they can’t answer everybody, and they can easily waive the price of one ticket. Despite that wheelers need a lot of space!!!

Does anybody actually take me seriously???

At the 10th of January I called the official phone number of the ticket center at the promoter of the event again. This time it was a call center, but they couldn’t sell me a wheelchair ticket either. Instead I got a phone number, this time the extension number “0” with which I reached the managing director again, how apt… ;-)

Am I the „Hauptmann von Köpenick“??? (German story)

After a conclusive argumentation of the boss why none of my inquiries were answered he promptly issued me an invoice for the ticket online. After settlement I should receive the ticket by mail.
I paid online immediately!

After a week I inquired on the phone where my ticket was?? The invoice number had been missing and the accounting wasn’t able to assign the payment… ho, ho , ho…!!

The day before yesterday I finally received the ticket, meanwhile the anticipation is limited.

At first sight we couldn’t even see what is the difference to a „normal“ ticket:


Just at a look on the backside you can discover the special feature: besides the handwritten (!) notice ” + escort” there was an official stamp with a signature (presumably of the managing director himself):

I will visit that event in any case, at least to get to know if I am the only wheeler at the concert??

I’m eager to see if I’ll get a message from the band Sunrise Avenue before the concert.

Translator Teo

Crazy Flash XII

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

Frontpage

Hit and Run!

Eigude Shame Part XXI

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

There are various reasons for somebody to make himself comfortable in a wheelchair. I won’t go into any more detail concerning this point. With a little practice you can guess what has happened to this guy who crosses your way twenty meters before you’re close to him.

I would like to mention at this point that most of us just aren’t able to walk or to walk anymore, and apart from that the neuronal networking is at least at the same level with the average population.

It is not necessary to reject anybody who isn`t able to walk anymore and send him into retirement. There are too little jobs for wheelers!!

On TV you sometimes see actors doing pleasure rides in a wheelchair. An affected person would never take a seat in such a crap chair. A real wheeler brings his own requisite.

At advertising shots for technical aids like wheelchairs, handcycles, wheelchair accessories and special clothing I demand a few jobs for us. Indeed due to the paralysis the belly gets a little bigger, but with Photoshop you can retouch this without any problems. ;-)

Recently a glossy promotional sheet for wheeler clothing fluttered into my mailbox.

That’s not bad though so you always keep up to date what is hip regarding clothing, colours and accessoires during the next wheelchair season.

The supposed „colleague“ has a top handcycle with motor support harnessed to his wheelchair. This is even a special type of handcycle for a quadriplegic like me, who barely can or are completely disabled to grasp. When driving the hands are fixed and you change gears with your chin.

At least the model, probably a pedestrian or a paraplegic who has never seen a handcycle before, should have had to be told how to grasp the handles.

Does that always have to attract my attention only?

There they are, our jobs…!!!

Hands in handles should look roughly like this, look at my picture:

I don’t look too bad for a model, do I? OK, the belly is cut off 8-)

Translator Teo

Technical Aids Test Week Lanzarote Part 3

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

对不起,此内容只适用于EnglishDeutsch

Technical Aids Tips and Tricks Part XLVII

Monday, January 16th, 2012

Recently I visited a concert of the “Blues Brothers” in an event hall called “Hall of the century” (Jahrhunderthalle) in Frankfurt!

This event hall was built in 1960. In that time people spent extensive thoughts on the accessibility of the building. To get as a wheeler from the foyer up into the hall there is, after a little sightseeing tour with the paramedic on duty through areas of the housing technology, a spacious, appealing freight elevator with the „Red Liftboy“ available.
The accessible service of the Red Cross is top!!!

During the break I wanted to go down to the foyer. Suddenly it stood in front of me.
Everybody knows it, the classic among the wheelchairs, the vintage and honorable

Iron Pig

also known as AOK shopping trolley (AOK is the main health insurance in Germany (translator’s note)). The two stickers:

I`m an energy saver! and Who will go ballistic in a jiffy!

allow to guess the approximate age of that wheelchair (in the 1970s there was an appeal to save energy due to the oil crisis). It was noted by the paramedic that energy saving is true because he is pushing the chair.
The paramedic positively mentioned the off road capability of the Iron Pig in action to cross the parking lot for the ambulance.

I must admit that I had to grin slightly that the city of Frankfurt isn’t able to afford a newer wheelchair, but this oldtimer is high class workmanship and maintained regularly as you can see from the new tyres.

I’m curious about how many years I will still meet this classic wheelchair!!!

Translator Teo

 

Crazy Flash Part XI

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Spanish riddle

I`m puzzled, who is allowed to do what on this beach???

Phantastic that there is no wheelchair-symbol posted on this sign!!!

Comments required

Technical Aids Test Week Lanzarote part 2

Monday, January 9th, 2012

Lanzarote, like Tenerife, is very accessible for handicapped, including a top service at the airport. Professional wheelchair pusher inclusive who also helps with additional perceived 100 kg medical devices luggage to get to the wheelchair taxi.

The island is a mecca for triathletes, people are training for the Ironman Hawaii there.
The fact that there are 2 bicycle lanes on the promenade might be a bit unusual for a holiday island, but is quite favourable for us wheelers. You could ride with your handcycle on the island until your arms fall off. In Puerto del Carmen you can borrow a recumbent handcycle which a former triathlete has provided who also moves around on 4 wheels now since a couple of years. Unfortunately only suitable for paraplegics :-(

Lanzarote is mostly accessible. OK, the curbs are sometimes lowered quite creatively, and the ramps have “Spanish 6 degrees” gradient, but we don’t want to be too pedantic here!

With all the hard work in the manual mode of my wheelchair (as I had to leave my Minitrac at home) I also had to deal with sand drifts.

With all this you have deserved a “hop blossom ice tea” (= cold beer) in the evening ;-)
I have already seen a lot, but a

wheelchair bypass sign

to the next beer due to the steep ramp (in the background) into the Pub is somthing new.

Translator BL

Technical Aids Test Week Lanzarote part one

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

This time, the compatibility of my wheelchair-tractive “Minitrac”

with my leg orthosis should have been primarily in focus of this technical aids test week.

Well, this masterplan could not be realized hundred percent.

Following the freightage chaos with my Minitrac from Crete back to Frankfurt (see older post) in June I started a new attempt.

This time everything should have been organised better, I wanted to estimate all eventualities, the destination were the Canary Islands, Lanzarote to be precise.

The only plane that flies from Frankfurt to Lanzarote on Sundays already leaves the ground at five o’clock in the morning

And if it is Christmas day, to say December, 25th 2011, this case gets an extra kick.

My medical devices, the wheelchair and the Minitrac (a weight of roundabout 70 Kg) were registered at TUIfly by my travel agency. These medical devices are transported by airlines for free when you register them previously, but the Minitrac was not mentioned on the confirmation of TUIfly.

After an inquiry at the TUIfly Hotline they confirmed the registration, but only the IT-System knows why only half of the medical devices registration arrived at my travel agency in black and white (or: in writing).

Because I live nearby the airport (the sound of the new runway is an insistent proof of this outstanding infrastructure) I considered a pick-up time by the transport service at 02:45 o’clock reasonable. Therefore the giving time of christmas gifts on Decembre 24th had to be a little bit shorter…

Already a couple of months before I fixed this pick-up time with the wheelchair transport service. I repeat: Decembre, 25th 2011 at 02:45 o’clock in the morning. That’s a point…

Three days before departure I wanted to have a confirmation for this appointment again – I enjoy making phone calls often to chase things up.

Nobody could remember the date to pick me up at home for transport to the airport.

The wheelchair taxi that we have in our luxury city Frankfurt is at night on duty by direct call only, which makes sense when you have a flat tyre or are „flat“ in another sense while you are “on tour” in the middle of the night. Unfortunately making a reservation is not possible.

With assistance I can get on and off a normal taxi.

Heavy hearted I decided to postpone my planned Minitrac-leg orthosis-compatibility-test, because I won’t expect any taxi driver to heave my Minitrac in and out of the car boot, sniiif…

I almost wanted to discharge my technical aids test travelling, but then I hoped to get some cognitions about the accessibility on Lanzarote.

I explained to the employee at the taxi office my handicaps in an explicit way, and that I couldn’t manage the height of the seat of an Opel Zafira. With an extra ordered „Stuttgartian estate car“ (Mercedes Benz (translator’s note)) the fifteen-minute-expedition to the airport, leaving my Minitrac at home, should start.

Wonder of wonders, after having a sleep for minimum one and a half hours, the taxi arrived very punctual at 02:40 o’clock. I went down the stairs with my stair lift (sometimes I will introduce that thing too) and was struck dumb at the sight of that stuttgartian car…!!!

My estate car with the star turned out to be a bus named „Vitara“. Seat height – no comment…

Now I know that at taxis busses and estate cars are the same and that you have to specify your wish when you order one. Strange thing…

With push, tear, press and shoveI I managed to get in and out of the bus still alive at the airport.

At the desk of TUIfly it was, like in the whole airport, still quiet at 03:15 o’clock in the morning. Checking the IT my medical devices weren’t registered at all.

Why am I calling hotlines at all??? However, my wheelchair was then declared without further ado.

At the security check my wheelchair was tested for explosives by adhesive strips. My question what will happen when I come back on January 1st and there were residues of gun powder from new year fireworks on my wheelchair, was answered succinctly, that I have to explain that to the German Federal Police then. And I wanted to get back from Lanzarote sometimes even before I got there.

The lifting bus took us to the plane and I was transferred to the airplane-wheelchair.

For me it is a bit of cheek when the aircraft is already fully occupied and you as a wheelchair user, placed on an airplane-wheelchair, are as the last passenger torn by two airport-employees through the corridor of the plane and thrown on the window seat .

As a crowning conclusion that plane had a special painting. I don’t have anything against the Peanuts or the “Maus” (German TV-comic mouse (translator’s note)), but why did it have to be this football club from Hannover?!? For me as a citizen of Frankfurt an absolutely no-go!

I would never have entered a plane with a label of Bayern Munich!

To be continued!!!

Translator Teo

 

Back from my technical aids test week in Lanzarote!

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

New blogposts in process.