Spokes is my alter ego who can sometimes be a smart-ass. Together we expose, laugh at, and seriously explore the journey of life in a wheelchair.
"OMG! Hooper has a chapbook of poetry he's peddling, with some Peeping Tom title. Don't buy it; it's borrrring."Purchase Book
Great book. The Aphasia chapter made me cry.- Mary Johnson
Funny. Poignant.- Lucy Painter
Straightforward insight into the disability experience.- Greg Stanmar
Don’t Push Me says a lot on many different levels.- Dr. David Nye
One guy is brilliant, but this Hooper dude, not so much.- Spokes Ableman
First, you need curiosity and a sense of humor. Don't Push Me goes far beyond the spokes and into life with a disability. Hooper asks readers to look at a man in a wheelchair and then say, "Hey, that's a pretty good life." So who reads Don't Push Me? Scroll down.
Here are some excerpts from Don't Push Me, which just scratch the surface of what's inside.
You guys were like the white rats, running the maze, Hoop. The Tunnel and your own conditioned attitudes kept you and the other disabled students out of the school’s mainstream. You were locked out by your own free will, the perfect oppression: Worked for them; sucked for you.
"No, I guess I have always felt that you are paralyzed, and you have no sexual life. And, you know, that is just part of it. That’s part of being disabled. Ahhh, umm, I don't think you have gotten less masculine because of it or anything; it, I think, is just something that doesn’t work."
I don't need to be cured. I think my disability sat me down and had a long talk with me and kept talking all these years even when I wasn’t fully listening. I’m happier now than I was before I broke my neck. I wasn’t a jerk (shut up, Spokes!) when I was still walking, but...
Murderball itself was invented in Canada. A group of quadriplegic athletes were sick and tired of riding the bench and playing second fiddle in wheelchair basketball. So, using a volleyball, they started playing a little game of “kill the guy with the ball.” And quad rugby was born.
A masterful job of linking together Spokes vs Fast Eddie. It creates two voices that together make the points that need making without bashing the reader over the head. Nicely done. If nothing else, buy the book for the story about the Ramp Van (it's near the end). You'll be laughing your head off - and no; you don't have to be disabled to get the joke!
Amazing! Don't Push Me really touches home. My daughter has used a wheelchair since a youngster because of Spina Bifida. I myself, an Infantry reporter in Vietnam with Agent Orange all around me, contracted MS at age 40. Hooper has the gift of gab both orally and on paper (he’s part Irish, you know). He and so many others like him are why our towns and cities are accessible for people with disabilities.
Hooper has blasted stereotypes most of us have grown up with of what life in a wheelchair is about. Witty, courageous, and honest. Don't Push Me will amuse, infuriate, educate, and inspire.
Don’t Push Me is a refreshing campaign against herd mentality. If you’ve ever looked at a person in a wheelchair and said to yourself, “What a pity!” this book is essential reading.
The truth is not hidden or diluted; it is actually enhanced by this emotional and almost spiritual like journey of understanding. A griping book that is also inspirational. I found myself totally getting his point of view on his life without being in a wheelchair myself. This is a FIVE STAR BOOK on any rating system!
This was the first book that kept me up until 2 am in a long, long time. I laughed. I cried. I got angry. Everyone can benefit from this book.
It’s about 11:00 p.m., and I just finished reading “Don’t Push Me”. I just wanted to let people know how much I enjoyed reading this book! It really held my interest. I knew I really liked it when I was staying up late the last few nights to finish it. It was very informative and I loved the stories about family.
Powerful! You gotta love Spokes! It is a refreshing and humorous read from Hooper's and his alter ego, Spokes', perspectives. It sheds light on the ability to have a fulfilling life if even from a wheelchair. It brings to light all the things that I, as an abled body, take for granted, but gives me a profound respect for those with disabilities (handicaps, gimps, whatever you want to call them). This book shows the prejudice towards them and how one voice can start the change- or would that be two voices? It has dramatically changed my way of thinking. Hope to hear more from Hooper and Spokes soon!
Excellent book, an eye opener and educational to all people. I enjoyed it immensely! It was brilliantly written.
Your book is amazing and I have thought of myself as a person who lives a life devoted to diversity, but I have much to learn about the ways in which you and other wheelchair users are discriminated against. What a powerful book! Thanks for writing it. You have conquered so many road blocks and still have a sense of humor.
We all have our weaknesses, biases, and, dare I say, disabilities. However we come by them, and whether affecting mind or body, this book provides a path to acceptance, growth, and happiness despite our challenges. Mr. Hooper, with his alter ego, Spokes, gives us path through the maze of life's sometimes harsh difficulties, his being particularly tough, a path to a fulfilling life. I highly recommend this book. It provides sharp insight into how persons with disabilities view the able bodied, and how the able bodied should view them, raising the question of whose disability?
Thank you, Mr. Ableman. I read Ed's words slowly over a number of weeks. Some read it in one sitting, It took me longer, and I am glad it did. It has given me the time to savor the written version of some of Ed's stories I have heard him tell in person. They are challenging and deep and humorous and hopeful. I loved Ed's book and recommend it to everyone. It is sentences like these that allowed me to wheel with Spokes and Eddie: "My head was a can of alphabet soup overstocked with consonants." "Oppression is most effective when those being oppressed don't know it." "She was there, I can smell her now, Spokes." "We are all simply people, some of us happen to have disabilities." Read the book. It might change your life!
We both loved the book!!!
Don't Push Me is an honest, insightful (and at times humorous) account of living life with a "disability". The author's ability to confront a major challenge and turn it into a positive makes this book relevant for anyone. It is a must read for everyone, reaffirming the power that we all have to contribute to our society.
Ed and Spokes are terrific. I have a family member who is in a wheelchair, which is why this book caught my eye, and much of what "Don't Push Me" goes into, I have seen first-hand. I think Ed, and Spokes of course, wit and wisdom is right on, and I would refer this book to all my friends - walking and/or pushing. Terrific!!
An amazing journey of faith, hope, perseverance, courage, a sense of humor, and a lot of moxey!! A great story from the guy who lived it. What a privilege it was to have read it.
I have little or no control over Spokes, but if he pisses you off or inspires you to write, please do. We'll add you to our mailing list.