Search This Blog

Friday, January 22, 2016

Just In Case You Weren't Sure

When someone, me for example, says to you, I’m deaf, this is what it means. It means that I’M DEAF! The hearing’s kaput! You can talk as much as you want but, if I've never conversed with you before, odds are, I’m not gonna understand what you’re saying. N.B., Lipreading's one of those Jedi art forms.

Yesterday I had not one but TWO people who, while seemingly sentient, failed to understand what being deaf entails.

The first happened while The Amazing Bob and I were at MGH for his CAT scan. We’d finished up and were leaving the imaging department, a rabbit warren of office, exam and procedure rooms. We each stopped off at the bog before the inevitably long ride home (Wednesday evening it took close to two hours to drive the 14 miles from town to home. Thursday morning our commute was 90 minutes).

While I was waiting for TAB, a smartly turned out, pleasant seeming woman came out of her office (so this was a medical professional and shit) and started talking at me—rápidamente too. I stopped her speech flood and smilingly said Hi, I’m deaf so I just missed everything you’ve said. This barely slowed the woman’s talk torrent—she charged on with more words. This time, I put up the crossing guard stop sign and said Hi, I’m deaf. This means that I’m unable to hear the words you’re saying. I’m standing here waiting for my husband to get out of the can. When he’s done, we’ll be on our way. Look, there he is now!

I get it, the lady saw me, not a doc or nurse, standing around in the hallway and figured I was lost. She’d come out to see if she could assist. That’s dandy. More better dandyness would be in knowing how to communicate with folks who don’t understand your language.

The next incident was in the pharmacy parking lot when I went to fill a ‘script. I came out to see that a giant horking “mini” van had parked tight next to my poor baby Bix. So close in fact that, had there been time, I would’ve joined Weight Watchers so’s I could more easily slip into the driver’s seat.

I very carefully opened my door but, while wriggling in, my door made VERY soft contact with the van. Inevitable and, honest to Bast, it was a touch NOT a hit. The woman leaped out of her monster vehicle, raced to my door, demanding that I open. I did. A flood of angry words were coming from her. Great. Again I said Hi, I’m deaf so I missed all you just said. Obviously unfamiliar with the word "deaf," she kept talking and then pointed at her side door which I’d, supposedly, decimated. I looked. There wasn’t even a scuff mark. OF COURSE there wasn’t! I’m driving the auto equivalent of a cotton ball!

At this point, driver babe notices that her tank’s finish is showroom perfect and spews some more lexemes in my direction. I pointed out that she’d parked part way into my space, well over the lines and then apologized for, possibly, touching her car. And then I shut my door and drove off.


I believe I’m going to have cards made up for future occurrences. They’ll look like this:
Want more communication tips? Here!

No comments:

Post a Comment