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The Contemplations, Rants & Reminiscences of DavidB327

Something Sensational To Read On The Train

25 July
I am a surviving member of a cynical generation, growing up in the 1960s & early 1970s. Much of what has happened since then has made me even more cynical, but I would like to believe that at heart I am a very positive, pragmatic person.

The music & fashion of the time (and indeed much else) were very stimulating, but it was the emergence of punk & new wave that provided the catalyst for my experiments with self expression. In the 1980s I would have been labelled as a ‘gender bender’, but now I believe it would be ‘gender non-conformist’. I don’t feel the need to be labelled as anything – I just want to be treated with dignity and respect.

I have an academic background in science, obtaining a PhD in Vision Research, and with several years’ post-doctoral research experience in Visual Search. I left academia with reluctance, and eventually started work in IT for a large multi-national telecoms company (where I continue to work). The analytical skills that I developed in academia actually make me ideally suited to my role, and there are occasions when I find the work stimulating and enjoyable.

In the 1990s I learned that I have Retinitis Pigmentosa, a progressive genetic condition that can result in blindness (it did). I went through the ‘Why me?’ stage a long time ago, and have adjusted to living with my disability. It is frustrating that there are things I just can’t do any more, but that is not going to change – however much I might want it to. I focus on the things I can do, and do them very well.

Also in the 1990s (to be precise on 06 April 1991) I met the love of my life, namely Christie Elan-Cane. It has been an honour and a privilege to have spent the last 2 decades with Christie. It is a great comfort to know that I will be spending the rest of my life in the presence of someone so wonderful. I will always be grateful to Janey for introducing us.

It is not surprising that my career in IT has led to me gaining expertise in website Accessibility guidelines. It has become a great disappointment to me that little importance is attached to adherence to the guidelines. Anyone who wants to understand how that feels should read Franz Kafka’s brilliant allegorical story ‘The Metamorphosis’.
Disability discrimination in the workplace is far too commonplace, but I am no Gregor. This is something that I am actively fighting against, and will continue to do so as long as it takes.