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On Tinder I tend just to say I've got a health problem and that I'm genderqueer, so there's no kind of expectations of me being cisgender almost. PIPA - Yeah, so cisgender would be like if you're born as female you're identifying as a woman kind of thing, and then trans would be anything other than that. PIPA - Well this thing, I'm not too sure, because when I do decide to open up my profile to guys then I'm anxious that it's possibly a fetish thing with being trans, not so much with being blind, because that is just a problem, men and women.

Ellie, you wrote a book called 'Holiday with the Mystery Italian' whose main protagonist is disabled. Tell us about him, tell us about the plot. KATE - But you chose to write with a disabled character in the forefront, so what made you do that? ELLIE - The character sort of came before the disability, I knew quite a lot about him, I knew that he liked to collect experiences and he was really outgoing and I thought about what could have sort of made him like that, what might have happened in his past.

And I stumbled upon the idea that he'd had an accident of some sort and then sort of playing around with the idea that that accident had had sort of physical hangovers as well as emotional ones. And my brother has a disability and reliably informs me that it has never got in the way of his dating life. So I sort of started playing more with this idea of him having a disability but it being very much sort of incidental to the story, that it wouldn't be a big part of his conflict, it wouldn't really get in the way of the relationship, he was just a character who happened to be disabled.

My sister and I don't talk about that sort of thing too much. Was it a bit weird? SIMON - But if it helps him… I love the fact that the character was in your head as well, it sounds almost like you know this person. ELLIE - Yes, so this when Amber who's our heroine, she's a journalist in London, when she sees him for the first time as they sort of do the big reveal on the dating show.

So, 'The screen rolled back with a wobble and a creak and then she saw him and realised she'd been right. It was him the athlete, the brain had stopped and ogled and then apparently played half naked images of in some deviant part of her mind, just in case it came in useful one day. His dark hair, not slicked back this time but rebelling from a side parting, showed a hint of red, a dash of chilli hidden in the chocolate, and the shoulders dominated the rest of his body, making his waist look narrow.

He had abs that would make a lesser woman dribble. His wheelchair was small and space age looking and the least interesting thing about this mountain of a man. An open shirt collar showed a triangle of tanned skin below his neck, and for just a moment Amber remembered that bronze torso thrust out of the pool by powerful forearms. And Mik Scarlet was moving his body quite a lot to say, "This is me, this is me.

ELLIE - They didn't bat an eyelid and I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I took it to them, but yes, they said as long as he's sexy then go for it. ELLIE - There isn't no, so this falls with the True Love series, so we're very much about the emotional journey for characters and lots of emotional conflict, not so much about what happens in the bedroom, that's all behind closed doors. ELLIE - And it does also help as well with the disability side of things, I could give him every piece of equipment that I wanted to, he even has a home sort of designed entirely around his chair.

So he goes jet skiing, they go up Mount Etna and he uses a hand cycle, it really just meant that I could do anything that I would normally do. How did you find that out? ELLIE - I did lots of research, so one of the main things I had to do was decide exactly what his injury was and what sort of impact that would have had, what sort of range of motion he had, what sensations he had, and once I'd sort of got that quite clear in my mind I spent quite a lot of time on forums where people with very similar injuries were talking to other people who had recently been injured or had been living with their disability for a while to find out sort of what information they were passing on to people who were new to this world.

Ellie, would you be willing to take a listen, maybe give us some feedback, a critique? KATE - 'It's been a long day wheeling around the big city from meeting to meeting. As a high-flying executive I often get offered a car but my long fought for independence is so ingrained in me that I resist the offers. I forget they're offering me cars because I'm now rich and important and not because I'm different. I wheel into my kitchen and he's there, all strong armed and beautiful.

He has that look on his face and I know what he wants, but I'm so out of spoons today that even the idea of spooning is tiring me out. His face swoops down to mine and kisses me long and hard and somehow I suddenly melt into him.

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Before I have a chance to think he's picked me up out of my chair and he's carrying me into the bedroom. As much as I hate being carried my arms appreciate the break and somehow he knows that. He lays me on the bed and starts kissing me. First my lips and then my neck and I start pulling his t-shirt over his head.

He grabs at mine and tug it. It gets stuck and I beg him to pull it harder. He does and I hear that old sound. He's dislocated my shoulder. I think it's got a future, I think you should stick with it. KATE - Well great. Well, when Ouch kicks me out I'll know that I've got somewhere to go to at least. Well thanks for coming on and chatting to us. More details later when we play out with his track in full.

But before that, Mik, you're here to do the social and news roundup in a minute, but tell us about the disability agony uncle work, you mentioned this, that you do for a website, Enhance the UK? MIK - Yeah, Enhance the UK have a web page as part of their website called The Love Lounge, and myself and Emily Rose Yates give… We're the non-expert sexperts because we're not trained, we kind of basically give our idea from our own experience. And people write to us with different problems, some might be, "I'm finding that I'm getting rejected on apps, what do I do?

MIK - Yeah, go and meet people. I mean we've had some really graphic sexual questions that we've researched and helped with, and it's kind of just, if you've got questions go online and look for The Love Lounge at Enhance the UK and if you think that myself or Emily are the kind of people that you'd like to get advice from please contact us because I know when I was young there was nothing and I was lucky, I just fell into finding meeting people that helped me.

And that's kind of what we want to do, we want to make sure that if you've got a question we give our… We give what we think, like I said, I'm not an expert. I mean typically, give us a couple of the sort of questions that you see more frequently.


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MIK - Lots of people genuinely sort of hit puberty and go, will I be able to have sex? Because parents genuinely get a bit nervous and don't talk about it and their kids don't know how to bring it up. And you don't get sex education at school that goes, "Oh by the way, if you're disabled you do it like this. MIK - Everything. I'm giving advice at the minute to a couple, one's got cerebral palsy and one's got SMA, and we're trying to work out ways of making it so they can do it, if you see what I mean. So I'm researching….

MIK - Yeah, they're a couple, and so we're trying to find out if there's equipment that they can use to make it easier for them.


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It's everything from how to do it, what to do, is there stuff that will make it easier? And Emily's fantastic, she gives sort of the female point of view, I give the male point of view, and also she's young, she uses apps, she does all that young thing stuff, and I'm the old man going, "Oh this is what it was like…". MIK - It's everything. People write to me and say they've been dumped and someone mentioned that it was because they were disabled and their heart broke and what should they do, and all that kind of thing.

How they face rejection. Some people just write and say, "How do I feel confident? KATE - Thank you for that. Yeah, we'll come back to the sex and lurve in a moment, but this month has been very busy for news. What's been going on Mik? MIK - Well, one of the big stories that was covered in a lot of the newspapers and on Victoria Derbyshire Live and all these kind of shows, was about Sally Reynolds who was going to see Little Mix with her daughter, she's deaf, and four months before the show she requested to the promotor, "Could I have a BSL interpreter there so that I can share the experience with my daughter, we can see the show?

I thought they were called little minx. And the promotor said, "No," and then they said, "Oh, we'll give you your money back," and then eventually she took an injunction out and said, "Look, you do need to do this," so they did it. Then she arrived only to find that they'd only provided BSL for the headline band and not for the support act. MIK - So then she said, "Well I'm going to do an equal opportunities sort of thing and take it under the Equality Act, because I feel that I have been discriminated against because I didn't get the full experience.

The majority of people are calling her horrible names and being really horrible about her and saying things like, "Well, of course you don't enjoy music, you're deaf," and stuff like this. And it just to me shows just how ignorant the public are about, one, being disabled and, two, what the law says. I mean I've…. KATE - Let's just break this down a little bit. So people are saying, "You're deaf, you can't enjoy music concerts. KATE - For argument's sake, tell me how a deaf person enjoys a music concert. For a lot of people you just think, well that's not for you, like being in an art gallery is not for a blind person.

MIK - Tweets that were sort of like saying how foolish it was, were saying, "Well whatever next, do you think blind people are going to get an audio description of paintings? I mean, one, deaf people are not all in a world of silence, so many people can hear and they can also feel it. I mean deaf rave has been massive since the '90s. SIMON - They can hear the thump and the beat and the vibration, and the interpreter is giving you the lyrics.

SIMON - And a good interpreter almost makes it a performance themselves, they're with the music as well aren't they? MIK - And the thing is, promoters should have been providing British Sign Language at gigs above a certain size since the mid '90s. I mean I've played gigs in bands I was in in the '90s where we had interpreters, it wasn't a big deal.

Bands like…. MIK - No, these were little gigs and that's what I mean, is that once you get past a certain size of venue…. I'd think anything above 2, I think you kind of would expect is that you should be able to request it. Then the tour promoter should have budgeted for that in the tour and then hire a BSL interpreter for the gig that you've requested it. MIK - Well this you see is it, is that what's happened is is all the way down the line it's been broken, because Little Mix should have said, "Right, how can we make our gig accessible?

Do you have your thoughts, or do your thoughts have you?

And this is a very easy fix. You're talking about one or two people hired to stand at the corner of the stage and sign the lyrics. I became deaf really when I was early teens, so exactly when you're getting into music, all my friends were getting into music. I used to go to all the gigs and all the events, all the parties, just like everyone else. I love feeling the vibrations and I still… I'm losing my hearing again now and I still really enjoy like standing next to the speakers if I'm in a club.

And as much as I can put my hearing aids in and I can hear the music I also really enjoy taking them out and feeling the vibration, it's equally a sensory experience that I enjoy. What is it that you like? ABBIE - I think it's just another way of experiencing beat and rhythm and I can feel all the different pitches of the music and stuff, if I'm next to a really good speaker. MIK - Why is it that when disabled people ask for equality they're being considered some kind of awful person? I think that's horrible. SIMON - I saw the one where the person said, "What if there were 2, deaf people turned up you'd have to have 2, sign language interpreters?

MIK - Yes, exactly. You'd be squeezing past the interpreters going, "Come on, I've got a dance routine. Why don't we have all the lyrics shone on a board so everyone can read them? Then maybe get the dancers to put BSL in the dance and have signed song.


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That would be fantastic. But the scary bit is this has made Little Mix's name synonymous with exclusion.

If they'd have got it right Little Mix could have made it so that they were the band that broke the barriers. And I think that's the key, people miss out on this wonderful chance to be the ones that change things. Darkest Day L. They turn their backs And they put me out They build me up Just to bring me down Like pieces of pages and scattered shreds Tattered thoughts and worn-out threads Torn up words and loose change Burnt up bits of cellophane Everywhere, everywhere I go Everywhere, everywhere I go.

Oooh codeine arms, Wrap around me safe and warm Under the light of your sweet charms Save me, save me codeine arms. Oooh codeine arms, Wrap around me safe and warm Under the light of your sweet charms Save me, save me codeine arms Save me, save me codeine arms.

A hollow log, a hollow log Sleeping in a hollow log A hollow log, a hollow log Sleeping in a hollow log. The echo of his footsteps in the street And the drip-drop of tears on my cheeks Were the only sounds on that sad dark night When my loving baby said goodbye. Come on over and see me sometime The jukebox plays on and the losers are fine Oh how the whiskey flows and it works like a charm Here on Heartache Boulevard.

How long, not long because the truth is marching on How long, not long because this hour will soon be gone Though our aching legs are weary the truth is marching on The truth is marching on, The truth is marching on and on and on and on How long How long. Somewhere out west a freighter rides by You used to watch them pass with their grit in your eye And the wild dogs under darkening sky Still listen for your lonesome lullaby. The patch of ground where they found you that day Is godforsaken, a barren place Why did you have to go this way Why did you go this way. Have you ever seen peaches growing wild on a vine Have you ever seen peaches growing wild on a vine Well just climb in my orchard and get a taste of mine.

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My money comes and goes, My money comes and goes My money comes and goes and rolls and flows Through the holes in the pockets of my clothes. Endless nights of one eye open and one ear to the ground You promised me eternity but you never even come around Well all my worries came flooding in the day you said hello If you care to know what I think of that, honey step outside your door. I was raised in that country So pure and so fair But I took too hard to the whiskey And I wandered away from there.

You will walk it all alone, You will walk it all alone None will save your weary soul Till you lay down your heavy load.

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Seasons come and seasons go Seasons come and seasons go Still so little any will know Till we lay down our heavy load. Angels calling soft and low Angels calling soft and low They will guide me safely home Till I lay down my heavy load. Once upon a starry night I had a little boy was the light of my life And I know that I never can stay away Oh my god I pray. When you wander all the time With a ragged and a worried mind When you walk a crooked line Then your troubles will be like mine.

Poisoned streets Full of blood The people can do nothing To hold back the flood. The water takes them Not one life line Everyone just standing Ringing their hands and crying. Show less. Using the thesaurus. Close What are red words? Close Thesaurus. Synonyms and related words. To make something continue or last longer: draw out , drag out , spin out