Setting The Wheels Of Comeuppance Into Motion

, , , , , , , | Friendly | November 23, 2019

(I require a wheelchair to get around, so I need to use the handicapped-accessible stalls when using the bathroom. On this particular day, I am visiting a building to drop off some paperwork when I feel the need to go, and I am pleasantly surprised to discover that the restrooms in the building have a generously-sized handicapped-accessible stall, giving me plenty of room to wheel in and get myself settled as I transfer over to the toilet. Right after I’ve gotten myself situated, there is a sudden banging on the stall door.)

Me: “Occupied, sorry!”

(I hear the lady on the other side scoff.)

Lady: “This is handicapped only!”

Me: *trying to be a bit jovial* “Yep. That’s me.”

Lady: “No! You can’t just take the stall from those who need it. People with actual handicaps need that stall; you can’t just take it because you want more space!”

Me: “I’m not. I—”

(She cuts me off to shout some more, so I simply settle in to do my business and ignore her, as I’m certainly not going to transfer back over to my chair and open the door just to prove that I actually “deserve”  the stall. After a bit, she stomps out, and I think that is the end of it. However, right as I am finishing up, I hear her come back in, talking to someone else.)

Lady: “–do something. Those of us with actual disabilities need those stalls! You see, right there. Some brat’s in there, taking up the stall.”

(I’m forty-nine, but I guess I should be flattered that my voice apparently sounds so young.)

Other Lady: “Ma’am, I’m not in charge of the restrooms. I just—”

(At that point, I’d gotten myself settled back into my chair, so I gave the toilet a good flush and then opened the stall door. The look on that lady’s face when she saw me in my chair was priceless. She gaped for a few moments and then just spun and scurried out of the restroom. The other lady, who I think was a secretary for one of the offices nearby, just looked confused, like maybe she was being pranked. I suppose that maybe the woman did have an invisible disability that requires the use of a handicapped stall. However, if that was the case, I’d hope that she’d be more sympathetic to the need to not judge people on whether they need assistance or not.)


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