Sunday, January 11, 2009


You know how in the morning on the way to work, you'd have to go through the pay toll?

And how you have to line up behind 100 cars if you don't have Touch n Go?

And how relieved you feel when it's finally your turn to pay?

And how you expect gloved woman's hands to take your coins?


Then how would you react when a hand with only one finger greets you? (Im not talking about middle finger rudeness, don't get me wrong.)

I hope you didn't flip like I did. I think I shivered and the lady realized. And I also took a few seconds too long to figure where am I supposed to put the coins. Then the one-fingered lady impatiently snatched the coins from my hand.

I didn't even know how she did it.

We all know it's not nice to stare, let alone to show obvious discomfort at abnormalities within the human body. I mean, come on, we all know that. But when something catches you off-guard, like how the hand caught me off-guard, can we blame ourselves for behaving the way we did?

I certainly didn't mean to stare. But to tell you the truth, I was somewhat shaken by that. All this time, I thought I had no aversion for the handicapped. I was feeling like the jerkiest person alive when I left the pay toll.

In the past, I've seen people without limbs, without a finger and sometimes with more than 5 fingers on each hand, and I didn't feel as shocked as I was with the one-fingered lady. Maybe because in the past I've prepared myself for these encounters, a minute or two before getting close.

When I left the pay toll, I was also thinking that the lady was used to seeing my kind of reaction, because she impatiently snatched the coins. She had a look in her face that said, pssshhhhh another one of those kinds...


I'm sorry for the way I reacted. I'm amazed by your courage and perseverance. And how easy, conventional work can be unconventional and tricky. And how those stoopid staring people makes it altogether more uncomfortable. I know how you feel. It's like when people stare at a red pimple on my face like it's their business, or how kids point at my braces and say,"awat gigi ada had tu?" or "what's that"? Some of them even laughed.

I understand, and I'm sorry that for a minute there, I was one of those people. God bless you. I promise not to shiver next time.

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