Friday, 8 February 2008


Ever had that feeling that you said the wrong thing? Yeah, me too, and why is it that we always remember those embarrassing or humiliating moments for years but forget all the good times when we said just the right thing? The memory must be burned into our brains at the time of the blush!

Anyway, last knitting night I was talking about something I'd made, and one of the other ladies said something. Now, she has a quiet voice (I think) at the best of times, but sometimes it fades out (for me) completely. It's not just her, it's other people's voices too. Maybe the acoustics in my living room are bad or something, but I can be looking across my coffee table and see someone's mouth moving but I cannot hear them.

I admit it - it's me. It's not anyone else's fault. I need to have the TV louder than anyone else in my family. Sometimes my husband will say, "What's that noise?" and I'll say, "What noise?" It can be useful, because in theory I can avoid being bothered by small noises that would irritate someone with perfect hearing (like my husband). I swear he could hear a mouse sneeze a kilometre away.

Anyway, back to the knitting night. After my friend said something, I said something, and I had a strong suspicion from the expression on the others' faces that what I had said was totally unrelated! The irony of it was that we had just been talking about mothers and mothers-in-law who don't listen, and laughing about asking someone a question and they answer a completely different one. It's funny when you're talking about someone else, but I have to confess....with my hearing, this could be me! Yikes!

I don't think it's that bad. Most of the time I think my hearing is perfectly adequate. Then I hit a snag and I have to say, "Pardon?" and it's really embarrassing (and annoying to the other person) to have to say it more than once.

The funny thing is that noises, especially repetitive ones, really bother me. Maybe I'm subconsciously trying to go deaf so I don't have to hear my kids sniffing, or the neighbour's kid riding his dirt bike, or my teen's music or whatever. Or maybe this is an inherited thing - my mum had the stapes in her ear (one of the tiny bones that vibrates) replaced when she was about my age. (Hope it's not that.)

I have noticed that my mum-in-law's hearing is not perfect either, and what bugs me is when she asks her husband to repeat something he'll do so but AT EXACTLY THE SAME VOLUME (and he has a quiet voice). And you know what? Sometimes my husband does the same thing (and he has a quiet voice too). Gah!

I know my friends are reading this so I apologise in advance if I have to peer at you (so I can partially lip-read while you're talking) and occasionally ask you to repeat yourself so I don't go and open my mouth and put my foot in it again!!!

1 comment:

Anonymous said... you have me paranoid that I'm a 'quiet talker'. Funny that this stands out for you because I don't recall you saying anything odd at all! I will do my best to speak up now though :)