You'd think this would be easy. Go to a medical supply store, pick out a cane that does not scream "I carry wads of graying ten-year-old Kleenex and peppermints in the pockets of my cardigan," adjust that cane to my height: problem solved. Off to the races. All systems go. Ever onward to victory.
No. Wrong. Problem not solved. All systems not go. Victory not...onward...to....(?) Because, when I went to the medical supply store in Champaign, here are the cane choices I have to choose from:
- A cane patterned with American flags and eagles.
- A cane patterned with red hats.
- A zebra-striped cane.
- A Las Vegas cane, because what happens in Vegas doesn't have to stay in Vegas. You can carry the bright lights of the Vegas strip around on your mobility aid. All the glitz, none of the having to pee in a Big Gulp cup because you can't drag yourself away from the slot machine.
- a polka-dotted cane.
- a cane with a kind of swirly, paisley design that managed to look both geriatric and acid-trippy all at once.
- a cat cane. Because what I really need is to look a little more like a crazy cat lady.
The reason: I am six feet tall. I have the out-of-control hair of a young Bob Dylan or Dan Bejar (it's about the only similarity I have with Dan Bejar, alas). I walk like I inject heroin into my feet. I have a tendency to talk with my hands using elaborate gestures that routinely cause me to spill drinks and hit people in the face. The last thing I need is to draw more attention to myself.
I therefore require a cane that is both badass and inconspicuous: the kind of cane you could thrust proudly in the air at a Destroyer concert but also lay demurely under your chair at a meeting or, say, a garden party (I've never been to a garden party, but I once had this Garden Party Barbie, so I've always wanted to). I suspect that such a cane does not exist. I suspect that I will be walking around with my noisy cane forever....or at least until the surgery (fingers crossed).
Does anyone have any suggestions? Because right now that "snakes on a cane" option is looking pretty damn good.