Interpreting: where you can legitimately say, “they do not pay me enough to do this,” and, “I can’t believe they pay me to do this!” on the very same day!
Last night I had the opportunity to see the great Peter Cook and Kenny Lerner perform their poetry performance Flying Words.
It was fantastic. But of course it was, that almost goes without saying.
The room was packed with members of the Deaf community, interpreters, interpreting students, ASL students and their families. It was literally standing room only.
As the program began and Peter and Kenny were introduced my heart leapt to see that the interpreter was one of my former students, now graduated, certified and working as an interpreter at a local college. She was poised and confident and I could not have been more proud.
I looked around the room and saw many of my students, current and former, filling the audience. As I looked at each of them I remembered the laugher and tears I had with each one. Struggles and breakthroughs. Frustrations and insights.
But most of all I could see love. So much love. For each other, for the language, for the community. I am proud of each and everyone of them.
If I am to be remembered for anything let it be for them.
Now. Don’t think that I’m saying I made these interpreters what they are today. I just helped them to find the path and refined the edges.
There is a, possibly apocryphal, story about Michelangelo where someone asked him how he carved an angel from a block of marble and he replied:
I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free. Michelangelo
I’m not trying to aggrandize myself by saying I am comparable to one of the greatest artist in history. I am simply saying that we talk about him today because he saw the angel and set it free.
I looked at that room full of angels; those who are free and those still finding their wings and I smiled and thought, “if someday, at the end of my time here on this planet, I look back to see what I’ve left in the world for future generations and I see this room full of angels then even when I’m gone I will truly live forever in peace.”
Thank you Peter and Kenny. It was a wonderful show!
“What do ‘the Deaf’ think about X?”
Nope. Sorry. My mind link to every person on earth who is Deaf is not working.
Need a Wingnut Spanner? Ask the interpreter. Chances are they have one in their bag.
Will only a Left-Handed Wingnut Spanner do? Hold on for a minute, that’s in their car.
At the end of each appointment take a moment to ask the really important question.
“Did you notice, was I wearing a coat when I came in?”
VRI Interpreters! If you can put on pants and maybe, I don’t know, shower-even when you don’t need to (because seriously! Who would ever know)-then maybe VRI is for you!
Like a Drone pilot, VRI Interpreters sit in a room with the power over life and death hundreds or even thousands of miles away (but unlike a Drone pilot “life” is really what you are going for).
VRI! Sure VRI is a two dimensional presentation of a three dimensional language, but let’s not get bougie and start demanding ALL the dimensions. Ok?
If it hurts it’s a problem you shouldn’t ignore.
If you think that ignoring the pain will make it go away, just remember…
If you are willing to work between 1:00am and 6:00am anytime you are called, you will always have work.
Hello family! First of all I want to thank everyone for their concern about my absence. The outpouring of love this year continues and I am overwhelmed by the many and specific acts of kindness and thoughtful notes I have received.
I am fine.
I am better than I have been in a long while.
I took a little break to work on the book but then this happened…
This beautiful gift is the daughter of my son who we lost to suicide in July.
She arrived and everything else kind of went away for a while.
As I have said in my Rules in various ways no job or task is important enough to require you to abandon your family and the love and support of friends.
Truth be told, the book is only slightly more complete than it was. But my heart has undergone a healing miracle. I have the peace that can only come from looking into the eyes of my granddaughter (not used to that one yet) and realize I need my heart to be whole so she can break it for herself each time she leaves my arms.
She is not my son. She is who she is and who she will be.
She is all attitude and smiles like he was as a baby, but she is also herself.
But I can feel him. Wanting to hold her so I do it for him. It’s been my job for a minute-it took me a minute to overcome my fear, it went away the moment she looked at me-I could make this a full time job.
I am back though. I have a whole crop of new Rules and Notes and Random Thoughts on what you Probably Should Know.
I am starting out with a hard one for me. It makes me a bit nervous because it’s self reflective in a way I am not used to.
But that is for tomorrow. Today I am Grandpa Uncle Dale. Gruncle (Yes I know that is Gravity Falls but I’m retasking it for my own purposes).
Today is for this:
See you tomorrow.
The next two posts got roughly the same number of views.
I mention this only because one is more educational and one is more personal and the fact that they were equally viewed speaks to the balance Interpreters need to find between feeding our minds and feeding our souls.
Note From Uncle Dale: ASL to Spoken “Hearing.”
Note from Uncle Dale: This is a Rare Moment Where My Blogs Meet