Since entering my 30s, I’ve learned how to receive compliments. I have also learned that compliments are often used by men as bait to get women talking to them. For some, paying a compliment entitles them to a woman’s attention.
A plus of being deaf (as deaf as I am, anyway) is being blissfully ignorant of any catcalls that are sounded my way. For these volunteering their opinions about me out loud, not getting any reaction out of me must be maddening. It’s glorious.
On occasion, some bozo tries to override my inability to hear by following me.
I’ve been in Victoria for five months, and it’s already happened three times. Most recently, I was sitting on a bench scrolling through social media, getting annoyed with people on the internet, when I noticed a shadow cast over me.
Continue reading “Experiencing street harassment as a deaf woman.”
Imagine the year is 2019: You’re at a real estate office with a friend to inquire about purchasing farmland with the intention of growing pre-pickled vegetables. (This would be done by irrigating crop with vinegar instead of water.)
You ask the realtor some questions. Rather than answer you, the realtor pulls your friend aside and whispers in their ear. The realtor works in a polite smile but gives you nothing more than that.
Once the meeting has ended, your friend relays all the realtor’s answers to you (“No, you can’t pay the mortgage in pickled vegetables.”) Your friend also tells you about the mortgage plan they’ve agreed upon without your input. Although you trust your friend to make the right decision, you can’t help but be wary of the realtor and remark to your friend that you found it unsettling how the realtor ignored you.
THEN! Your friend defends the realtor’s behaviour. Your friend asserts to you that the realtor was professional and rationalizes you being left out of a conversation about something that affects you. In other words, “Shh, the adults are talking.”
Continue reading “Shh, the adults are talking.”
Tomorrow I start my 24-hour 3-flight journey to Trelew, Argentina. I’m exhausted just thinking about it. It’s a great relief that this time my travelling pal, Mélissa, will be on the same flights as me. I am counting on her to be entertaining enough to compensate for the absence of captioned movies on these flights. I’ve had to endure many entertainment-deprived flights including the 15 and a half-hour haul from Vancouver to Sydney, Australia. Don’t be surprised if, by the time we land in Trelew, Mélissa will have a head full of micro-braids because I’ll need something to do while she watches Super Troopers 2 back to back to back to back…. to back.
White girls on vacay!
Continue reading “A Scorpio below the Tropic of Capricorn.”
Eight years ago, I was stalked very briefly. Considering how quickly my stalker gave up, I’m not sure I can even check this off my anti-bucket list. It also is entirely possible I am still being stalked. (Hi Angela!)
Continue reading “Stalked by an Angel…a.”
If you follow me on Instagram and follow me closely enough to stay updated on my Stories, you would’ve caught my overview of the shitstorm caused by a popular YouTuber on Sunday.
I’m not going to repeat as much of the details here as I don’t want to direct further attention to this person’s channel.
The story begins with a hearing person with no ties to the deaf community who gained notoriety for her “ASL” videos of songs. The spoken portions of her uploads are often not accompanied by captions thus making them inaccessible to deaf people who rely on them.
That’s not all; she decided to start selling ASL-themed merchandise. At this point, Chrissy Marshall of The Essential Sign and 50+ other members of the Deaf community convened to write an open letter delineating the issues with what this person was doing. The letter was very polite and informative, yet it resulted in posts on Instagram, Twitter and even a new non-captioned video by this person accusing the Deaf community of attacking her.
Continue reading “Nothing about us without us.”
Just so you are aware: it’s Deaf Awareness Month.
I wasn’t planning on posting about this but as it’s also Deaf Awareness Week, I’m under double the pressure.
For this, I’ve put together an FAQ. Except, instead of answering the questions, I am going to rate them on their awkwardness:
Continue reading “Beware of the Deaf.”
Attending a social gathering, especially one composed of mostly Francophone hearing people, is decidedly not a Laura thing. But if it’s a friend’s birthday, I try to give the gift of my presence at their party.
At last Sunday’s party, the birthday boy, Paulo, looked at me in the eyes and challenged me to the “Circle Game”. This is the game where someone dupes you into looking at their hand as they press thumb and index finger together to form a circle, which happens to also be the sign for “asshole” in ASL.
Continue reading “Maybe it’s just a Laura thing.”