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Can't Never Did Do Nothing....

It was a day designed specifically to lay out exactly what I am incapable of doing---- at least at the present moment....

I cannot sign in American Sign Language.

I used to babysit a friend's little brother, during the summer of my first? second? year of college. He was hearing impaired, not completely deaf, but he did use signs regularly to get his wants/needs across.

Over the summer that I worked with him, I did pick up some sign language. But.... he was 3. Most of the signs revolved around the color of the ball/toy he wanted and what movie he wanted to watch. We really didn't get into any philosophical conversations. Definitely not.

There's a part of me that wishes the little brother had been a bit older, as I might have retained some of the signs I did learn if we'd actually tried to converse. Now, however, I usually don't think about it. At least, I don't think about it until one of our deaf patrons comes to shop for books. And, I am disheartened that I can't offer the same customer service to them as I would to other customers.

I know they're probably more than used to dealing with us hearing folks--- requesting a piece of paper to write out what they need...trying to understand our reply (if it's a complicated answer) that we can't "talk"
through....but, this is the CUSTOMER accommodating me, instead of me accommodating my customer.

It makes me more determined than ever to LEARN sign language and I leave the bookstore with every good intention to do so---- then, I forget. Or, life gets in the way. Or, some other lame thing prevents me from pursuing it. *sigh*

I don't know why we don't just teach ASL in elementary school. How much harder would it be for a child to learn what the word LOOKED like as well as how it was spelled? It's not like they would actually be learning a new "language", the words are the same...it's just the delivery that's different.

So, I am re-establishing my goal to learn ASL--- don't know exactly when I'll carve out the time, but, I will... now, all I need is someone to hold me accountable!

**********

On a less depressing, though just as frustratingly annoying, note----

I cannot use Spider Wraps to secure merchandise effectively in our store.

These things cause me such distress----


Comments

  1. i share your frustration at being asl inept. i always felt like i was letting down the customers when they came in. i actually remember an incident where a man was very angry at me for not understanding his order in the cafe he tried writing it but his handwriting was worse than mine and ultimately he stormed out of the store... they should totally teach asl in grade school and foreign languages as well i dont think developing a way to communicate with the world around you should be an extracurricular activity. also spider wraps are dumb. and some of the ones you guys have you never had the right key to open them with...lame.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. we should totally find some asl classes and LEARN TOGETHER!!!! we could hold each other accountable :-)

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