Tuesday 13 May 2008

The art of walking... revised


Ahem, sorry – I am still chuckling to myself after my antics with Fab Friend at the climbing wall last night. I encountered one of the most common pitfalls connected to being deaf – trying to lipread AND walk, and stumbled straight into a bent-over man’s bottom.

Fab Friend and I dissolved into fits of giggles much to the man’s bemusement and it seemed too difficult to explain quite why I hadn’t seen his hulk of a torso in my path… but I honestly didn’t because I was looking backwards hearing something FF was saying about a cute boy around the corner.

Walking into things when you’re deaf is something of an occupational hazard. I have honestly walked into more lampposts/walls/people/cars than I’ve walked around.

I do try and look where I’m going, but if I put more effort into that, then I can’t chat and I really do like chatting.
One time, on a school trip to the ballet I walked into a lamppost with such ferocity that I honestly thought I’d managed to reverse the direction of my nose.

But, when things like this happen to me, and I can feel the burning eyes and guess that bystanders are sniggering, I console myself that hearing people walk into things, too.

Perhaps the best one I’ve ever witnessed was at Notting Hill Carnival – cool people, cool music and lots of TV cameras. There was one filming on Westbourne Park Road and the two people ahead of me spotted it and started to try and walk cooler, look cooler, dance cooler but actually looked like total dicks.

This was amusing enough until one of them, putting all his effort into coolness, failed to notice a massive lamppost – wider than average and festooned with streamers and balloons, I have no idea how he managed it. But he hit it, front on and bounced of it with the ease of a bouncy ball and the finesse of a newborn foal.

The camera captured it all, including my beaming face – not happy about his misfortune, but happy that for once it wasn’t me!

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