My eyes have let me down a couple of times recently. As you will know from other posts in this blog, my eyesight has suffered as a result of diabetes and/or the stroke. I mean, generally, these days, I live ok with my eyes. Whilst I don’t think they’ve got any better, I certainly don’t think they’ve got any worse.
Yesterday, I was reading something online, which led me off to a newspaper article. I read the article, then made a comment. The only problem I had was that I misread the article – I thought I had read it properly, but I hadn’t. It was quite a serious post in quite a serious forum, and whilst it is interesting to discover other views, and share your own, it’s generally not a very forgiving place – somebody can be relied upon to pick up on something pretty quickly. True to form, somebody did spot the mistake. Fortunately, they managed to tell me without also adding that I was an idiot, that I was brainless etc. which is often the case on the internet, and really is unnecessary – I often think that when people choose just to insult other people, they’re exposing their own limitations. At least, if he did tell me, I didn’t see it.
I, of course, deleted my post and apologised. I don’t think he made capital out of it, but of course he could easily have said something like “make sure you read things properly next time before commenting”, which would have been fair enough. The problem was, I thought I had read the thing properly.
So as a consequence, as I say, I removed my comment and didn’t replace it, although, of course, I still had a view. But I thought I’d forfeited the right to express that view by my error. I might well have left the group as a result, if I can’t rely 100% on my eyes, but, as I say, I find some of it interesting. I mean, it probable takes me much more effort than it does the average, able-eyed person to work my way through a post, but that’s my problem. The great thing about the internet is that nobody knows how long it takes me to read and write stuff.
The second incident (don’t worry, there are only two) was that I had to renew my PIP benefit. I posted about this just last time out. I’ve had the form a week or so, and when it first arrived, I’d obviously read enough of it to know what they wanted me to do, but I’d missed the deadline, which was a just a couple of days later. We just had a bank holiday in the UK, so there was no postal service, and my form couldn’t possibly get back there in time. I mean, I have to rely on my wife to scribe these forms (really annoying, but for another post), and she works four days a week, plus she was away last weekend and part of this, not to mention having her own things to do rather than just being around to fill forms out for me, so it was always going to be tight. I didn’t realise just how tight.
So my renewal application will arrive a couple of days late, and god knows what they’ll do in response to that. Worst case, I suppose, they might turn around and say that, because I didn’t renew in time, that they’d assumed I didn’t want to renew and have therefore scrapped my case. But that would be a pyrrhic victory. It’d take me extra time to re-apply, it’d take them extra time to sift through a “first-time” application. If they take that route, I could just appeal I suppose, but it’d have the same result in terms of taking us all more time. I suppose the fallback, as far as I’m concerned, is that I’m certainly not trying to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes – I’m far stronger at walking, but my wrist, hand, ankle and foot are still paralysed, so it’s a no-brainer for me to pursue it to the end. With any luck, the DWP will be sufficiently tardy in opening their mail, that they won’t notice anything was late. They must deal with many thousands of these applications so I very much doubt that someone is sitting there waiting for mine.