Friday, February 19th 2010


You know what it’s like when something pops into your head and you think ‘why on earth didn’t I think of that before?’ Well I had a moment like that recently whilst browsing through pictures on the Internet. I stumbled on the image below and I thought ‘eureka’, the answer to my mobility problems! If it’s good enough for Pixar then it’s good enough for me, and (bonus) I weigh considerably less than a house so it must be relatively easy. Why on earth put up with clumsy wheelchairs limited to smooth flat surfaces when a leather harness worn around the chest and attached to a bunch of helium balloons would be so much better. Suddenly all the advantages began to unfold in front of me: I would be able to traverse gravel footpaths, grass fields, sandy beaches, as well as snow and ice. Hell, I could even glide across a river if I wanted! And all it would need is a gentle push periodically from my carer Why hadn’t anybody thought of this before, I wondered? The more I thought about it the more I admired the simplicity of it: no heavy wheelchair to lug around, just a bunch of colourful balloons that would bring joy to anyone who saw them. Maybe I could even use the balloons for advertising (a kind of float and promote) and earn some cash at the same time!

The inspiration behind a great idea in revolutionising disabled mobility! 🙂

But how many balloons would I require, I wondered? Some quick and dirty calculations suggested it would be more than I had for my birthday last year! What I needed was somebody who was good at sums and who better than my friend Stephen up at Cambridge University. I figured that somebody who was used to calculating the origins of the universe would have no trouble working out how many balloons it would take to lift a nine stone man. But the figures the good professor has come back with just don’t make any sense to me. Between you and me I think he’s got it all mixed up: instead of working out how many balloons would be required to lift my weight into the air, I think where he’s gone wrong is in trying to calculate the mass of the Earth so that it can be detached from my feet! It’s an easy mistake to make! smile_regular

Hang on a minute, I’ve just thought of something. As appealing as all the advantages are I’ve just thought of a few disadvantages such as having to consider wind speed, direction and rain. I’m now wondering am I just swapping one set of problems for another?

As you can tell we’re entering the silly season! smile_teeth

So much has been happening lately with the disease seemingly attacking me on multiple fronts and making life challenging that I thought it was high time I injected some humour back into the blog. MND may very well take away all my physical abilities but I still, thank goodness, have my sense of humour. And long may it continue.


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One Response to Friday, February 19th 2010

  1. Mark you are indeed an inspiration! I’ve been following your blog for about 3 months now. I don’t have mnd, nor any other disease in fact, but I like reading interesting blogs. Your blog is fascinating – you are fascinating. I’m continually inspired by who you are and how you continue to live your life with such charm, style, humour and personal strength when facing such adversity every single day. I love your latest photos – the light that shines out of your eyes is wonderful. I admire you greatly! thanks for the laughs on your blog today 🙂
    If you have time in your busy life to wander the internet, and want to read of the recent experiences of someone who lives in a town that is absolutely nothing like yours, you can check out my blog at It might be the best way to introduce myself to you.

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