Oct 30, 2005

Chapter 29

Parkies of the world, infiltrate!

Bob Dawson
President and Acting Treasurer
Parkinson’s Underground Internet Conspiracy
Defender of the Down-Trodden
Champion of the Common Man
The Sword of Morality and Righteousness
Beloved Leader of Those Who Just Don’t Seem Right
(Photo taken at MJ Fox Foundation Annual Gala)

ANNUAL REPORT Parkinson's Conspiracy 2009 - 2010

Fellow Co-conspirators,

Please remain seated until the fat lady sings. After the closing ceremony, the doors will be unlocked, and your weapons and passports will be returned to you, except for those of you who have been selected for re-education.

Now is the time when People With Parkinson’s will grab the chicken of medical history and wring its wretched neck. This is the moment we have been waiting for. This is the moment we trained for, during those long years in exile or hiding in the forest. The Field Commanders have chosen the best avenue for attack. It would be a wise decision, in terms of your personal longevity, for you to do exactly as the Field Commander of your unit “recommends”. You will find your personal marching orders in the bag of gifts and souvenirs that was so generously provided to us by the ever-helpful Pfizer Corporation.

As Mao so wisely advised, we must learn to swim among the fish in the sea. We must disperse, infiltrate the System, and co-opt the Normals.

To do so will require substantial resources at the presidential level. Fortunately, the fund-raising drive has been immensely successful ever since we began accepting cash donations from competitors of Amgen and Merck. This is just a beginning. We are in negotiations with Pharma for the renewal of our contract. From now on, we want more than a fixed fee; we want a cut of the take. Let’s talk percentage. We ain’t gonna be no mule and we ain’t gonna be no messenger boy. Either we are on the bus or we are off the bus, and it all comes down to the cut of the take, that various conglomerates offer us from time to time, for our skilled marketing methods and modern weaponry, and our ability to claim victimhood status while taking over the banks.

Or, do you want us to make “alternate arrangements for treatment”?

Team, team. We’ve got to work like a team. One for all and all for one.


The Parkinson’s Underground Internet Conspiracy, the much-imitated game-changing multi-national, not-for-profit, Non-Governmental Organisation dedicated to making the Parkinson’s Industry safe for anything that is at least a little better that a placebo. This was a dance magazine for the first 20 chapters, and we had the Sabre Tooth Tiger Theory, which is God’s own truth, but then a whole lot of stuff happened and we ended up here. Anyone who remembers what happened, please send a letter or postcard.

Our bank vault in Nigeria.
There’s more where that came from

I have a mind to give up living
And go shopping instead

Parkies of the World ! Disperse, Infiltrate, Co-opt.


Okay so that drove them away. Now we talk, quickly. Everything changes, everything moves, mostly in spirals. This started with a little old Jewish lady in a hospital waiting room, berating this web site and loudly recruiting me to her cause in front of 20 bewildered witnesses, and it ended when Cecil's neighbor called and said that something was wrong.

I'm done.

You say to me "community" now? You ask me how I feel. Is that some kind of a joke? All these people that you mention, yes I know them, they're all lame; I had to rearrange their faces, and give them all another name.

I have to get over that telephone call, and here is how you are going to make sure it does not happen again. When Cecil's neighbor called to say something looked very wrong. Thank you for alerting me. But you see, the man who called me lived one kilometer from Cecil's place. I live 130 kilometers away. I am not supposed to drive at night. It's country roads. Its was a long drive for me. And I got there first. I was the only one there at all. Until i went to a few doors to borrow flashlights and two guys joined me.
In a radius of 130km, it seemed there was no one knew he existed. They knew he was different. They were afraid he was dangerous. But they had no clue who he was. He died alone in the forest. Maybe that is the best result possible and maybe it was what he wanted; but if what he wanted was help, well, that cannot happen again, or perhaps I am simply not a member of what you call your "community". We are going to fix that right here and right now. That is not going to happen here again. I'm talking here, now, local yokels. I'm talking tonight and tomorrow morning.. We have disbanded the organisation and we will swim like the fish in the sea. We have divided up into autonomous units of 2 to 6 Parkies per unit, and we are going to go out into the world and infiltrate wherever we can. First, divide into action units; then we co-opt the caregivers, and then onwards - neuros and docs and therapists; we want to brainwash a few of them and drag them home; but sometimes there is too much steamy closeness in the Parkinson's Club; we need to get out to the town square and infiltrate wherever we can. Barely mentioning that we are Parkies. We are citizens, or Monster Truck Demolition fans. So let's start showing up at events, school board , meetings - any and all. A presence in the town. I am going out there myself, to see if anybody has any business for me. No resentment if not. Freedom of Association.
But if there are any Parkies around your country road, you will be seeing them more and more. They are going to start by volunteering to help people who do not have Parkinson's

Field Commander Genevieve started this in her area in 2009 and it is going very well and she started the Reverse Bake Sale -- they baked cakes for all the neighbors and then knocked on the doors and gave them all cakes, and after that some of the Normals start to say hello and remember who you are, and so you are a lot safer, the more you integrate with them so they would be sorta upset if you wandered into the forest and nobody could even remember what you looked like because they never looked at you.

A mouse will imitate the pain of another mouse, but far more so if it already knows the other mouse. Parkie mice, you are all going to need help. Start by giving help. Infiltrate, go see people, make contact, so that they will know the mouse. And then (I will go look for the reference), the Tears of the Strangers will no longer be dismissed as being nothing but water. Parkies of the world, infiltrate everywhere you can, and co-opt the Normals.
And always remember: it has to be more fun to be in the revolution than not to be in the revolution.

At ease. Guards you may now open the doors and each of you choose any direction that strikes you the right way. You are all free to go. There are many roads to take. Choose wisely. And Godspeed. Bless you all.

Postscript, after the Flood:
From Neurotalk Forum:
“Empathy is a complicated emotion, even for mice. On seeing another in pain, a mouse will act as if it itself is also hurting—much more, though, if it knows the first mouse.”

—In “The Tears of Strangers Are Only Water,” a Big Think blog post by David Berreby about research probing the physiology of empathy.
Part of the task is to get others in society to know what is going on in the PD mouse-house, so they too, will be able to understand that something is hurting.
And then, the tears of the strangers are no longer dismissed as water.

PSU's: Parkinson's Subversion Units. 2 to 6 PWP per unit, depending on geography and travel time. Every Parkie in the unit gets a call from another Parkie at least once a week. Keep track of what is going on with each, Parkie to Parkie. Each unit assigns a member to report to Field Commander, to spread awareness from unit to unit. But, take note: the units are autonomous. All connections between units and with head office are "at will". The relationships exist as long as all parties will it. If the will to work together is not there, the relationship is naturally terminated. Time it too short to play power games.

Neighboring PSU's can be called in if numbers are needed. Example: when Eric got fired, just for the fact of being PWP, even though he could still do the job, the 20 wheelchairs and walkers crowding into the lobby made an impression.

But that's defence; played when necessary. The units aim to advance.

After Parkies talk to each other, in the unit, they go to meet each other's caregivers, if possible; a visit to each home to see what the scene is. Try to co-opt caregivers gently if they are open to it (often, the list of what n0t to do is given to the spouse, who dutifully tries to enforce it on the loved one, and there can be resistance to our intrusion; so tread gently). But you are there for your fellow Parkie, not for the entourage.

Then, infiltrate the neighbors. Do something for them, such as Genevieve's reverse bake sale; tell them in a few sentences that you have PD, but do not dwell on it. Find ways to help. Be much more visible. Let them see you walking down the road, give something from your garden; offer to take care of their cat when they are gone; work your way into their lives, so at least they will know who you are and that you are there. You may need someone to call someday, but then again, so will they. You can probably help them more than they can help you, and so look for opportunities to do so.

Then, infiltrate the N0rmals' infrastructure
  • One town, Parkies went door to door collecting money. For cancer.
  • Went to Town Hall meeting; wheelchairs, walkers; but never mentioned PD. They went to discuss renovations to the old library. Same as everybody else - that is what the meeting was for.
  • Show up at any kind of event. Monster Truck Demolition Derbies are as important to attend as any Parkinson's gabfest
  • There are lots more examples but some of the units don't want me blabbering about it on the internet. So make up your own subversive infiltration plans. Start with where you are now and what you can do now and make it up as you go along.
  • Reminder: it has to be more fun to be in the revolution than not.

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