Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Two Disabled Cousins Slash Friends: Beyond the Tent and Into the Metro

I went on a Jewish retreat two weekends ago at Pearlstone Conference and Retreat Center in Reisterstown, Maryland. Well, not exactly. That sounds too culty. It was more like a retreat for Jews who aren’t really Jews. Well, I should clarify that. We’re Jews, but some of us just don’t do traditionally Jew-y things.

I wrote about that powerful experience, and you can read that story below.

As published in GatherDC

Kenny and I entered the Metro car at 8:30 on a Wednesday night after happy hour – and then some – at Carving Room in Chinatown. The Yellow-line train heading south was sparse. One woman wearing a pinstripe suit sat in the first row on the far side, and one man wearing a solid green necktie tied in a full Windsor knot read a paperback from his seat behind her.

“Aren’t you going to take that?” Kenny said, pointing to the open row just to my right knee as I walked in. Those were the seats above which was a blue sign of a person in a wheelchair.

I laughed. I had the kind of anything-goes camaraderie with Kenny, also known as my Taller-Younger-Yet Older-Looking Cousin. We’d just spent two-and-a-half hours volleying ideas about hosting a podcast. The podcast’s working title: “Two Disabled Cousins Slash Friends.”

Okay, so the title may need more work.

Taller-Younger-Yet Older-Looking Cousin has an obsessive disorder that can limit his activities. Ask Kenny and he’ll accurately state that his cousin Ben (that’s me) has many disorders. The most obvious is physical: I use crutches when I walk long distances. I call them my quadsteppers.

My quadsteppers and I fell into the row adjacent to the one reserved for disabled individuals, which Taller-Younger-Yet Older-Looking Cousin took. His joke led me to think of my interaction from twelve hours earlier. I began sharing this story as our train accelerated towards Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter station. Keep reading Two Disabled Cousins Slash Friends: Beyond the Tent and Into the Metro

In the Media
There were four people named Ben on my Beyond the Tent retreat. Gather DC interviewed us as the Jew(s) of the Week.

Some Recent Social Media Posts


Dad said...

Your writing style is great. You make a common occurrence like a Metro ride interesting and new. Thanks for introducing your blog readers to Beyond the Tent.

Benjamin Rubenstein said...

Thanks, Dad. I always appreciate that you enjoy my stories.