Long Days Journey Up The Ramp
In case you haven’t seen our Emmy submitted show called Donna On The Go, we did an episode about the challenges of stairs and handicapped ramps. We simply called it Stairs.
Stairs are so overwhelming to me that when I see them, they look like a mountain. A hurdle to climb. I mentioned to this to my friend Peggy Lane who created the show, and she thought there was an episode we could do about it. That a lot of people would relate to. When my eyes see a ramp near the stairs a feeling of relief takes over however, if the ramp is ½ block away it seems like an eternity. So using all that, that’s what we put in the episode. Me walking up and seeing the stairs looming in front of me, like a mountain, and then the camera (actually an iPhone) follows my point of view as I see the handicapped ramp miles away.
Looking up at the stairs I tried to convey these feelings in my facial expressions and body language. Peggy filmed it so the audience can see the long road from the stairs to how far away the ramp actually is. Peggy didn’t want the episode to be 20 minutes of me walking slowly up a ramp, so she added jump cuts and a time counter to keep the audience engaged and show people how long it took. What most people can do in a matter of seconds takes a mobility challenged person so much longer. It actually took us from daylight to sunset and I was still going up the ramp.
We filmed in it pieces so I wouldn’t have to keep going up the ramp and wear myself out. I had plenty of breaks. We lucked out when the sun actually began to set. It really sent the message we were going for.
In the middle of my walk up the ramp there is a cameo of an able bodied Pizza Delivery man running up the stairs with no problem at all. He gets to the car and drives off, meanwhile I am still plugging along at a snails pace. We wanted to actually show the contrast of how easy it was for him. We knew it would get our message of awareness to the audience.
While we are on the subject of awareness, if you could, when the opportunity allows, open the door for those who need a hand. These little things mean so much to the person assisting a wheelchair user or someone using a walker.
Thanks for your support everyone! Enjoy the episode “Stairs”.
Donna Russo and Peggy Lane