Posted by: silverstar98121 | March 13, 2009

Pay It Forward

So I thought to myself this afternoon, “Self, you need to go buy a bus pass.” And so I did, just tooled down to the bus depot, and got my pass. And since it was a lovely, sunny afternoon, and not bitterly cold for once this month, I decided to just honk around downtown. Went to Barnes and Noble and drooled all over their books. Which is my idea of cheap fun.

When I was finished drooling, I decided to take my new bus pass for a whirl and catch a bus home. I lucked out, and one came almost immediatly. After we got me loaded and strapped down, I looked out the window and saw one of the denizens of my building running for the bus. Well, actually it’s painful to watch her walk, but she was hurrying. I asked the driver to stop for her.

We started to chat on the way home, and since she is also the building busybody, I asked her if anybody needed a wheelchair. She immediately came up with a name.

So as soon as I got home and hung up my coat, I dug out the book for Dad’s wheelchair from my paperwork, cleaned out the front pocket where I keep the power cord of all Dad’s junk, and got rich. Well, I got enough for a couple loads of laundry, anyway, and I won’t look that gift horse in the mouth. However, it was plain that the change had ridden around with Dad for some time in dusty Colorado, because it gave new meaning to “filthy lucre.”

And then I grabbed my cane and rode the chair upstairs to T’s apartment. I rang the doorbell, and waited. And waited. Eventually, a tiny voice asked who was there. I had to use the busybody’s name as a reference, because I’d never met the woman who lived there.

Eventually, she opened the door, and I said, “I heard you needed a wheelchair.” And she whispered, “An electric one.” And I said, “Well, here’s your new ride.” Unfortunately, at that point I was afraid she was going to faint.

I got her sat down in the wheelchair, and gave her a brief driving lesson. She drove very slowly and carefully to the other end of the hall, with me giving her encouragement all the way.  About that time, Dachsund Guy comes out of the elevator in his wheelchair, and is totally confused by a) seeing me standing up b) seeing me on the “wrong” floor c) seeing someone he thought he didn’t know at the end of the hall in a wheelchair.

Eventually through discussion, I was able to assure Dachsund Guy he was on the floor he wanted, and that someone he knew was in the wheelchair. T is on her way sloooowly back down the hall by this time, and he starts kibbitzing her driving, and asking me if she can control her speed with one of the buttons. Nope, that’s one of the things that’s broken.

T is back at her door by now, and is doing the “I can’t believe it” number that is so common after they “move that bus” on Extreme Makeover, Home Edition. Apparently, she was happy with the rattletrap I had presented her. She’d been trying to get an electric wheelchair from Medicare for a year. Yeah, it’s a piece of junk, but when you got nothing, something looks real good.

She drove it in the apartment, we decided where she was going to park it, and then I showed her how to plug it in, and how to tell when it’s fully charged, presented her with the book to the wheelchair, gave her a hug and got out of there. A very satisfactory resolution to my dilemma.

For those who asked, there’s a photo gallery of pictures of the new chair here.


  1. that’s a feel good story silverstar

  2. What a great story – good for you!

    (and thanks for the pics)

  3. Great ending to the story of your dad’s wheelchair in that it is the beginning of another story for someone new (and who needs it).

    I recently joined my local chapters of and I’m finding it’s a great way to have stuff I no longer need – that no one would buy – continue to be useful for someone else, rather than going into the landfill.

  4. Magic! Nicely done – and i love The Pimp… from the front view? looks almost like a friendly little robot.

    you need flames on it…

  5. What a happy ending!

    I agree with Daisy Fae, the Scarlet Pimp needs flames.

  6. As I read this story, I just smiled. What a nice feel good piece. You did something nice and I get to feel good!

  7. All Right! REcycled and you didn’t even have to go anywhere but upstairs.

    That story brought a tear to my eye. So sweet.

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