How do you describe a person with a disability?

Do you use a wheelchair for mobility? Have you ever used a wheelchair? I have. Although it was temporary, the experience sensitized me like nothing before to the words and images people use when describing a person who is disabled or who uses a wheelchair.disabled-sign publicdomainnet

Some descriptions and terms have disappeared from popular use in the past few decades. Some, however, still linger. The National Center on Disability and Journalism (NCDJ) has put together a list of terms to avoid when writing about disability. Here is the link to that article HERE

(Image source: disabled sign-

Baseball communication


(Originally printed in 2012)

Recently, while talking with a relative, her response was a blank stare. It was as if I had lapsed into a language she didn’t speak or understand. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I must have thrown her a “curve.”

I learned communication is like baseball. What is key: “Expectations about shared understanding, opposing objectives, and a common knowledge of what is fair and acceptable conduct.” Read what Alva Noë learned in National Public Radio’s “Talking Baseball Can Be A Game of Communication”:


© sherrie smith |