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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Say What?

One of the positive things that comes with hearing loss is always having some amusing stories to tell of what you thought you heard people say. Here are some of my classic errors:

Misheard at a sporting event:
An athlete's mother was proudly telling my friend and me that she had been promoted from a temporary cashier job to a permanent position because she is "fat and accurate". Huh? Inside my head I'm thinking - now this woman is a bit on the heavy side and I have heard about attempts to stop discrimination against fat people but something doesn't seem right here...fat and accurate...fat and accurate...Wait a minute, she must have said fast and accurate. Thank goodness I hadn't said anything though I bet I had a surprised look on my face when she made her announcement.

Misheard around the library lunch table:
A friend was telling an amusing story about a bird that got loose from its cage inside her mother’s home. She added dramatically that the bird landed in the “cat dish”. Hmm…haven’t heard of a cat dish…must be something like a dog bowl on the floor…why is everyone reacting to that…she didn’t say it got wet or anything…cat dish…cat dish…aha – cactus! Oh hey, ouch, that would hurt. Of course my friend had moved on with the story by the time I figured this out and interrupted to ask, “Did you say the bird landed in the cactus?” Lesson learned: don’t interrupt a good storyteller in midstream. It's better to get the real story later.
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Comment from tutleymutley: Good story! My favourite mishearing (that I can recall, anyway!) was when a doctor said "Well, we'll just wait and see, then-" and I replied, "Her pee is absolutely fine". Blanks looks all round.

My reply: Yeah, those s sounds are hard to get. Good story.
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Misheard at the library close to Halloween:
Yes, it's a spooky season with lots of eerie happenings. But really that's no excuse for what I misheard today at the reference desk. A woman came in and asked for a book about flesh. Ewww. I did a double take. She repeated it again, "flesh". In disbelief I started writing out the word on scratch paper to confirm with her what I was hearing. Fortunately, just before I got to the vowel, she added the enlightening comment, "It's about multimedia." Ohhh. Flash - as in the computer program. What a relief.

To paraphrase Art Linkletter, when you have a hearing loss, people say the darndest things.

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