Tag Archives: Invisible people

Your Chain Reaction


I have heard people talking about how they want to face death.  How they want to be aware and to look death straight in the face, not go too willingly.  That is exactly how I feel about life.  Death is (hopefully) a distant inevitability.  Now I prefer to concentrate on how I am going to live gracefully.  Actually gracefully is not a word that is usually associated with me.  It is not that I am clumsy, just not stylish on my feet.

Most people do not live in a vacuum.  Most people on a daily basis come into contact with dozens of people.  Some of them I have referred to as The Invisible People.  These are people who take care of the world we live in and are rarely seen or acknowledged by those of us who benefit by their work.  There is the person that fixed the light bulb in the streetlight or who waters the plants on the Boulevard.  Often we don’t acknowledge cleaners or waiters or the person in the kiosk who takes your ticket.  But all of these people, whether  we acknowledge them or not, have an effect on how we live our lives.  And in turn we affect theirs.

Even those people who prefer to stay indoors and alone are affected by others.  Somewhere there are people ensuring that the water we drink is clean and that the power stays on in our homes.  They are affecting our lives.  If you watch TV or listen to the radio you are affected by what you hear and see.  In turn those people have jobs because you and I make use of their product.  Farmers provide us with food.  We need them and they need us.  So you see even if you want to be alone you are affected by others, unknown and unseen.  We are all in this together.

I want to enjoy life, my life. Not some regimented human warehousing excuse for a life.  I want to breathe the fresh air of freedom and know that I am making a difference to someone, somewhere.  Perhaps it will be my words that will inspire another to take a chance to sing out, to live.  Perhaps that is the reason I am here.  I do not want my death to make the difference, but rather my life and the way in which I lived it.  Each of us has something to contribute to the world in which we live.  We may not know what it is, we may never know.  We touch others every day, in so many ways.  Something we say or do can have a lasting effect on another and help to shape the way they live their life which in turn can have a lasting effect on another, and so on.  It is a chain reaction.  Don’t be the weakest link.

Invisible People


Have you ever walked into a crowded room and felt as if no one was aware of you? It is almost as if you are invisible.  Well that happens to me with some regularity although it is usually at a busy street intersection with many, many cars whizzing by. Am I a wee bit nervous? Yes.  Now to state a few pertinent facts.  The intersection in question has a ‘walk’ symbol that is very clear to both drivers and pedestrians.  The roadway is not visually blocked in any way.  Physically I stand about 5’5”, sitting in a wheelchair I am sure I am more than 4’ high.  While my particular wheelchair is not the largest on the market it is still quite substantial.  And yet, I have been narrowly missed by cars far too many times.  Why?  One theory (my own in fact) is that I have joined the ranks of the Invisible People.  Who are these transparent travelers, these wraithlike wanderers? Basically they are anyone who works or moves in virtual anonymity.  They are there but we don’t see or acknowledge them.  It happens a hundred times a day. People lead busy lives, they don’t have the time or the energy to see or respond to the dozens if not hundreds of people they come into contact with.  There is the guy who took your ticket on the subway, the kid who gave you your coffee and bagel, the cleaning staff at your office, the list is endless.  Some people make the effort to acknowledge these people, but most do not. That is sad.  Every single person you come into contact with in your busy life is a man or a woman that is important.  The woman who brings your mail promptly every day, the guy who keeps your streets clean, the individual who changes the burnt out bulb in your local street light.  These people are around, sometimes in our sight lines, sometimes not, but they are there.  The next time you see someone watering the plants on the boulevard, say hi!  Maybe it will become a trend and we will finally really see each other.  Maybe next time they will see me in the intersection.