RSSAuthor Archive for Mike Ervin

Michael Patrick Thornton: Finding His Role

Michael Patrick Thornton: Finding His Role

When the lights go up on the first act of Will Eno’s play, Middletown, on the main stage of Chicago’s famed Steppenwolf Theater, Michael Patrick Thornton is on stage. He sits in a wheelchair on the streetcorner, wearing a faded red flannel shirt and a dingy baseball cap turned backwards. He nibbles on a hunk […]

Mike Ervin

Ervin: Future Quads of America Membership Drive

Somewhere out there, there must be a group called the Future Quads of America. The FQA must be a brotherhood of aspiring quads who find paralysis to be romantic and so they do stupid reckless things in the hope of hastening the day when they permanently injure their spinal cords. They don’t have a death […]

Les McCann: Free and Funky

Les McCann: Free and Funky

It’s about everything. It’s about religion, about life, about God, about truth. It’s about how we live. The damn stair lift isn’t working! And it’s brand new, too! Three men fiddle with it, jump up and down on it, push the buttons over and over while jazz legend Les McCann sits in his bulky, airline-style wheelchair […]

Person of the Year. Harriet McBryde Johnson: A Life Well Lived

Person of the Year. Harriet McBryde Johnson: A Life Well Lived

Harriet Johnson has cracked the invisible wall that separates the disability community from mainstream America. Her debates with controversial bioethicist Peter Singer, her cover story in The New York Times Magazine and the response it engendered, and her forthcoming memoir have placed in the popular consciousness the seminal disability issue–the right to exist. Others with […]

Improvisational Hygiene - And Other Things You Might Rather Not Know

Improvisational Hygiene – And Other Things You Might Rather Not Know

Bob Ness and I are hurtling down the Dan Ryan Expressway in his adapted minivan. I say to him, “I have this assignment where I’m supposed to write about gimp hygiene. And it has to be funny. Got any funny hygiene stories?” I knew I could count on Bob to get me started. He’s been […]