Posted tagged ‘Rollator’


December 26, 2019

My story “Rollator” appears in the latest issue of Falling Star Magazine. I submitted it for the Intersections themed issue. There is a street intersection in my story, but another kind of intersection is what’s really important.

For the last year or so of her life, my mother was getting around town (quite well) with her Rollator, and I saw that these can be truly deluxe pieces of durable medical equipment (as we say in the trade). She had several, each successor being more feature-laden than the last.

This, and the activities at a certain house I pass each time I take my dogs to the park, merged and resulted in my story. Normally I don’t want to know where my “inspiration” comes from, but I don’t mind this time.

“Rollator” has found a home

September 5, 2019

My story “Rollator” has been accepted by Falling Star Magazine. It will appear in the next print issue.

“Rollator” is a one-off; it’s not related to any of my other stories, and it’s meant to be comical as well as topical. The story was inspired in part by the drive I make to the park where I walk my dogs. Along the way, through white bread suburbia, there is one fine house that has a number of cars in the driveway and along the curb. I often see men and boys at work on these cars, and I recall that many years ago our suburban city had “outlawed” working on cars in your driveway. If you wanted to work on your car, it had to be done within your garage. A great cry was raised by reasonable people who said they were being denied what amounted to their hobby of being shade-tree mechanics. (I agreed with them, though I know nothing about engines, other than that my wife’s car now needs a new compressor!) So the law was reversed. (Still, it is illegal to create a gravel driveway in my community. If you already have one, it may remain, but any new or repaired driveway must be paved.)

So I would drive by this house and see this out-of-place pastime and wonder what the neighbors thought. On my own street, just down the block, there is a similar house with cars and car hobbyists, and the people living in it are the least pretentious, most salt-of-the-earth folk in the neighborhood.

Falling Star Magazine had a theme for the upcoming issue: intersections. Their suggestion was literal: what do you see across the street or at the busy intersection. My story worked well within that but also deals with the intersection of people and cultures and how finding the person within the culture is often necessary for some people to find commonality. My protagonist is a grumpy old man who gets around with the help of a fancy walker: a Rollator. He’s seen a lot of change in his neighborhood and he mostly doesn’t like it. Until one day . . .

Falling Star Magazine is a print publication, so I won’t be able to share a link when the story appears.