Saturday, March 9, 2013

Entering the twilight zone...

Years ago I watched a Twilight Zone episode about a bookworm whose wish was to have time to read - and his wish did come true after an apocalyptic event.

If you don't want to watch the video, here's what happened - he found himself with all the time in the world, but his reading glasses broke so he was unable to see.

I've always been an avid reader. As a child, I read books so much I was urged by adults to stop reading. On the playground I talked about the books I was reading to kids who could care less. A bookworm?  Yes, I was and if I'd been offered an opportunity to just read and read without any other cares in the world, I would have seized that opportunity in a nanosecond.

So when I acquired quadriplegia and found myself unable to turn the pages of books, I was heartbroken. I couldn't afford a page turner, which cost thousands of dollars, nor could I afford to pay people to turn page after page for me. I recalled this twilight zone episode and shuddered.

I explored technology - that was almost twenty years ago.  I received books on tape from National Library for the Blind  and RFB, explored when it started and was delighted when even more books became available at Bookshare.  

I've watched technology expand from books on cassette tapes to jump drives, digital playing machines, books on mp3,  apps to read books on phones and tablets,  books that can be read on a PC screen with various size fonts and with assistive mouse/keyboard set-ups and more.  There are so many options compared to twenty years ago that I sometimes want to cry with joy.

The bookworm inside me is now happily satisfied. Sometimes I still wish I had more time to read, but that is a luxury problem after facing the possibility of not being able to get at a book.  No more nightmarish twilight zone episode for this quad!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you can read. :) It seems some of the technology I'm least fond of has been beneficial for other PWDs.

Out of curiosity, what happens if you try to turn the pages of a book? Is it flat-out impossible? Do you end up damaging the book?