We had a very slow day today. I don't mean that it was uninteresting, but it was very relaxed, and the majority of the day was just preparation for tomorrow.
Tomorrow is going to be a very busy day, as we are spending tomorrow in a wheelchair. Early on in class, Monte announced who our spotters are going to be, and I was paired with Arnold. Since the floors are divided by gender, he is not going to be able to escort me after a certain time of night, and Sofi will take over, since she's also in this class. We read two articles by Robert Murphy, a world renowned anthropological professor at Columbia that happens to be quadriplegic. He started researching relevant topics to "the world of the disabled" after a tumor started to grow by the base of his spinal cord, which ultimately paralyzed his legs, and he started to lose function in his left hand soon after.
I thought it was interesting how one of the articles he wrote tied back to the article we read around the beginning of last week. In the article we read last week it talked about the social body, the sense of self, and the psychological profile of the body. Murphy's article addressed the same things, but how they applied to someone who is physically (and at one point he mentions mentally) disabled. His articles also criticized biomedicine for not being able to deal with the "entire self", which is a theme that I have been seeing throughout the course of the class. We have been discussing how that failed Lia Lee in "The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down" and how it failed many different patients in "The Illness Narratives" as well.
After reading the articles, we watched a movie about Darius Weems, a boy with Duschenne Muscular Dystrophy, or DMD. DMD is a disease that is linked with a recessive gene that is part of the X chromosome. It is possible for it to affect females, but there is a far greater chance of it affecting males. It apparently affects 1 in 3,600 boys, and causes muscles to degenerate. It starts off by targeting voluntary muscles and then eventually works its way to the involuntary ones, like the lungs and the heart. Most people with DMD die before they turn 20. So during the course of the documentary, Darius and some of his friends travel around the country seeing major tourist attractions to test whether or not they are wheelchair accessible, and to raise awareness for the condition. Since the cause of DMD is known and has been linked to a singular gene, many scientists believe that a cure can be found within the next 20 years.
We started our boot camp Areté, and it was not nearly as intense as I thought it was going to be, and only was 7 circuits of 9 different exercises. We were let out a few minutes early so that we could run downstairs and sign up for our Saturday extracurricular. I sprinted over to the iPad and managed to be one of the first people to sign up for roller blading, since I have never tried it before. Apparently, last year three people broke their ankles and one person got a concussion, but I didn't let that deter me, partially because I think that it might have been a bit of an exaggeration.
At 6 PM we had our proctor group night, and all eleven of us went out to Noshville. (I also really appreciate the pun in the name.) On the way back, we started to compile a mash-up song that we might sing during the "CoffV House" night on Friday. We decided to have a "girls night in" while continuing to compose our song. Victoria braided the hair of everyone who asked for it, and Hannah brought an array of nail polish to the common room. Over the space of only one week, it seems like we have gotten so much closer. A wonderful end to a wonderful night.
|So, as I left the common room, I found this alpaca|
with a decent replica of our lanyards just in the basement?