Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Monday, June 17, 2013

Cities Restaurant in Foggy Bottom: STAY AWAY if Sensory-Sensitive

I went there with the Autism Campus Inclusion thing ASAN ran. And it was horrible. I got overloaded and had to leave. Other people had to step out. And it was nothing like what they said it would be. So I left them a horrible review on Yelp. They deserved it. This is it.
Cities restaurant in Washington DC was atrocious. Truly atrocious. I was there with the Autistic Self Advocacy Network for a group dinner with speakers from the government, and I could not understand much of what the speakers said. Prior to booking, the organizer had spoken to a manager on the phone about what our needs would be. Promises were made, including for a quiet, private space ideal for speakers. These promises were not kept. Instead of quiet, the way the restaurant was set up funneled noise from the regularly scheduled (bad) live music into our space. Like many Autistic people, I have sensory processing issues, and this sort of noise is a disability-related access barrier for many of us. It is especially so when there is a speaker who we are supposed to be listening to. One of our organizers spoke to a manager during the meal. On one such occasion, the manager promised us ten minutes without music for the speakers to use, starting then. That didn't happen either. The live band was slightly quieter for less than five minutes after this, which is not at all the same as ten minutes without music. The noise load at the restaurant was such that I had to leave partway through the meal, before the entree was served, which is a great disappointment as this dinner was supposed to be an important networking opportunity for the members of our group. 
I understand that restaurants are often loud. I understand that bars are often loud. This is not my issue (I won't claim to like it, but it's not why I consider this experience to be horrendous.) The issue is that had Cities either been honest about their inability to accommodate the needs of our group (only different from those of a typical business dinner in that disability turns the broken promises into an access barrier as well as a source of frustration) or kept any of the promises they made regarding access, this would not have happened. Cities Restaurant was dishonest throughout, and their inability to either keep their promises or admit to what they could not do deserves sole responsibility for the disaster that dinner was.

1 comment:

  1. That's disastrous indeed. Makes me even more impressed with the Italian restaurant where we went on Saturday: one daughter and I have noise-processing issues and my father-in-law wears a hearing aid, and when we asked for a quieter table than the one reserved for us they *turned the music all the way down for the whole restaurant* so it only masked background noise and didn't bother us. (This is La Perla in Deventer, Netherlands, if anyone is interested; not cheap but worth every cent.)


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