No More Blogger Labels

Just a FYI…I will no longer be labeling posts after this post. Mostly because my posts usually brings up overlapping topics and sometimes it’s difficult to figure out which category it falls under.

I’m just mentioning this because I know some readers pull up a specific label (e.g.

If you continue to go to a specific label, you will not get any recent updates….just go to the main page instead.

Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚
Have a great weekend!

Poker Face

This guy….

Lee’s BSL Songs (this link will take you to his youtube channel)

…has done over 200 songs in BSL (British Sign Language)….

He explains the reason why he learned sign language in his About Me section.
“It may not be obvious, but I have both Asperger’s and Tourette’s syndromes. I love signing as it relieves me from my tics. If there are people on the autistic spectrum, signing at a young age is a wonderful way to help with emotion and communication, and signing will enable them improve these skills in later life, I’d recommend it.”

Anyways, he did Poker Face by Lady Gaga…then another person decided to add subtitles and the music video. It was pretty cool to hear the song, watch Lee sign it, read the lyrics, and watch the music video all at once. It’s kind of a new concept. I did have to watch it a few times because it is a lot to watch all at once but I really liked the combination….full access to everything!

Dance Dance Revolution, Guitar Hero, and Band Hero

I’m not a big fan of video games or even games in general. Usually the only games I really enjoy are fast paced or physical (e.g. Twister, sports).

A few years ago I got into Dance Dance Revolution (DDR). I absolutely LOVED the game. I always thought it was good for a deaf person because you didn’t have to hear to play it. I got the game the summer before my 2nd year of graduate school and became a bit…obsessed with it at times.
It took me a while to grasp the concept of the game because I couldn’t follow the beat with my HA (even to this day with the CI, I cannot). It got to the point where I would play it for hours at a time or until the downstairs neighbors would take a broom to the ceiling telling me to stop.
The odd thing I always found was that it would take me a while to persuade hearing buddies to play it even though they had the advantage of hearing. The only 2 hearing friends who would play it without me begging were my roommates, Sarah and Ashley. Sometimes all of 3 of us would be in the living room jumping around.

Sarah and me
Devki (a bit unsure)

The word somehow got out to the some of the incoming 1st year class that I liked DDR. I was walking from the library one day during orientation week with a friend and she wanted to introduce me to some of the 1st year students. The first thing a couple of them said to me was….you like DDR?!? Whaa?!? Like they couldn’t imagine a deaf person liking that game (which makes no sense to me because it’s so visual).
Then I put the game away for some time because I felt bad for bothering the downstairs neighbors. I then got Guitar Hero which was a great Masters thesis destresser. I once again became a bit obsessed with it. I would oftentimes play late at night/early morning so I would mute the TV as not to wake anyone up. That game got put away once I had to put my nose to the grind and complete my thesis.
Meena and me
Lindsey and Steph
I’ve really wanted Band Hero for a while because of the drums! Dennis bought Band Hero a couple of weeks ago. I. Love. That. Game. The drums are tough but so much fun! I’m so tempted to buy my own set but I would probably become obsessed with it….maybe I should just rediscover DDR and save some moolah ๐Ÿ˜‰
Anyways, Sunday was Super Bowl. After the game, a bunch of us ended up playing Band Hero for almost 3 hours. What was awesome about this…was the fact that out of 11 of us…only 2 were hearing and it took a while to convince just one hearie to even play. The rest of us deafies were all over this game.
Yes, a couple of us (not me!) even sang. It’s pretty cool to be able to see the lyrics also. It was just nice to see that no one felt rejected when we were playing Band Hero. Music can be a sensitive issue among some deaf people. However, we had people who aren’t HA/CI users, CI users, and HA users getting into Band Hero.
People who usually don’t like music were having a blast and were even singing!
One interesting thing is that even though I’m a CI user and was a HA user for a long time…I just could never pick out the beat well enough to follow it auditory. I’ve always followed it visually unlike a lot of the HoH (hard-of-hearing) and CI users in the group. It was nice to see non CI/HA users getting into it also. I don’t have any photos to post of us playing Band Hero (yet…..).
To me, you do NOT have to be able to hear to enjoy music. I just enjoy moving around while trying to follow the rhythm (challenging!) on a guitar, dance mat, or drum set.
Anyone want to bet to see how long it will take before I cave in and buy my own Band Hero? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Sunday’s Parade: Ask Marilyn-Genetics Question

I happened to see this in today’s newspaper. They haven’t posted this weekend’s Ask Marilyn articles online yet so I’m going to type it up here.

“Say I have a 50% chance of inheriting a rare terminal illness, and I can be tested to learn whether I have the gene. If the test is positive, and I have the gene, I don’t want to know. yet, if the test is negative, and I do not have the gene, I do want to know. What should I do?
–S. Stephens, Hampton Cove, Ala.
You could arrange to take the test with these conditions:

After the test, the doctor privately flips a coin marked “positive” and “negative.” If both results–the test and the coin flip–are negative, the doctor tells you the test result.

If either result is positive, or both are, you are not told anything. So you will not know whether the test result was positive or whether it was the coin flip that was “positive.”

If you wish, you can ask the doctor to flip the coin a second time. Again, if both results are negative, you hear the test result. if either is positive, or both are, you hear nothing.
Over the years, you can ask the doctor to flip the coin as many times as you wish. If the test result was negative, you will be likely to hear it before long. But if you want to stop at three flips, you can. Regardless, if the test result was positive, you will never know for sure.”

Videos: ASL-CI, Super Bowl, Dancers

I really like the first video. It shows that no matter how well you can hear with a CI…you are and will always be deaf. Be proud of who you are even though it may seem difficult at times. I also LOVE that it shows you can be both a CI user and still use sign language. I will never understand why so many people say you can’t have both and you have to choose between sign language or a CI. Wrong-o! ๐Ÿ˜‰

In honor of the upcoming Super Bowl game. Here’s a Super Bowl commercial from 2008 (a classic!).

The dancers in this video are deaf.

Seating Preference

Every so often I forget what’s considered “normal” in the deaf world isn’t always considered “normal” in the hearing world….and vice versa.

I drove up to take my grandma to a couple of doctor appointments yesterday. My aunt who lives near her usually helps out, but her son (my cousin) had been admitted to the hospital the other day. Turns out he had to have a defibrillator put in (scary stuff…especially when you’re only 25) and she needed to be at the hospital with him.
Anyways, I was reminded of what I call…my deaf tendencies. Normally, hearing people sit next to each other. general…deaf people like to sit across from people. Why? Not because people smell but because it’s easier to lipread and watch sign language. There’s a reason deaf groups like to ask for round tables at restaurants. ๐Ÿ˜‰
When I first moved to NYC…I would oftentimes sit by myself, across from hearing friends on subways. This worked great until we hit Grand Central or rush hour….then it was impossible to see them once the subway got full of people. It took a few months for me to realize why they always gave me a funny look when I would go over to the other side of the subway to sit across from them…by myself.
I finally realized I had to explain that it was easier for me to lipread them and to follow the conversation in terms of who was talking. Once I explained, they actually started getting into the habit of sitting across from me which was awesome. ๐Ÿ™‚
There I go blabbing once again.
Anyways, I walked into the waiting room with my grandma and automatically sat across from her and near the door to the examining rooms. It wasn’t until she asked me to move over and sit by her that I realized how natural my deaf tendencies are. I tend to scope out a room and figure out where the best place is for me to sit. What I SEE is what I “hear.” If I can’t see it…I can’t “hear” it. Her choice of seat put us with our backs to the door where the nurse calls you in.
I typically sit where I can see the nurse calling out names. I think that was the first time I had ever sat where I couldn’t see the nurse. Then I remembered it wasn’t my appointment so it didn’t matter. ๐Ÿ˜‰
It was good getting to see my grandma for a bit. My cousin got to go home yesterday which was great news. My friend, Tara, who was in the hospital for preeclampisa gave birth to her son Monday night….even though Dylan’s 5 weeks early, he’s doing great! Tara got to go home today.
I like when people get to go home from the hospital! ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m Trying To Take A Cat Nap…..SHHHH!!!

When I first got the CI I was so overwhelmed with all the sounds…including hearing myself breathing. It still catches me off guard at times that I can hear myself breathing. For the most part I don’t hear myself breathing (I naturally tune it out) unless I’ve been working out or something.

Anyways, I’ve been hearing my breathing more often in the last few days….probably because I have a cold.
I stayed up too late last night (as usual) and paid the price for it today. I decided to start a 227 page library book at 2:30am which I finished about 4-430 am. Double Take: A Memoir by Kevin Connolly. I oftentimes just grab random books at the library without really knowing what they’re about. I had no clue what this book was about until I started reading it. It was an easy and quick reading. For those of you who want to know what it’s about…see the end of this post.
I also chose today to try and reduce my daily caffeine intake…which…at this rate, I think I really need my daily dose of caffeine. By dinnertime, I was ready to just crawl into bed and sleep the rest of the evening away.
I ended up watching something on the Internet while I was laying on my comfy bed. I kept pausing it because I kept dozing off. I also happened to have the CI on but didn’t think to take it off for some reason. This is what happened…
Me: *dozing off, about to go off to zzzland*
Me: What’s that noise?!? *wakes up, looks around……noise stops…..can’t figure it out, starts to doze off once again*

*dozing off, about to go into deep sleep*

Me: *wakes up again* What…is…that…noise?!?

This went on for about 15 minutes before I finally figured it out. Keep in mind I was half asleep while trying to figure it out……hence the reason it took so long.
I was hearing myself breathing. I think what was happening was that every time I was about to go into a different sleep stage of the sleep cycle….my breathing pattern changed and I could hear it. I tuned it out whenever I was in the dozing off stage and couldn’t hear it until I was about to actually fall asleep.
How did I solve that problem? Took the CI off and got a much needed 10 minutes power nap!
“Kevin Michael Connolly is a twenty-three-year-old who has seen the world in a way most of us never will. Whether swarmed by Japanese tourists at Epcot Center as a child or holding court at the X Games on his mono-ski as a teenager, Kevin has been an object of curiosity since the day he was born without legs. Growing up in rural Montana, he was raised like any other kid (except, that is, for his fatherโ€™s MacGyver-like contraptions such as the โ€œbutt bootโ€). As a college student, Kevin traveled to seventeen countries on his skateboard and, in an attempt to capture the stares of others, he took more than 30,000 photographs of people staring at him. In this dazzling memoir, Connolly casts the lens inward to explore how we view ourselves and what it is to truly see another person. We also get to know his quirky and unflappable parents and his spunky girlfriend. From the home of his family in Helena, Montana to the streets of Tokyo and Kuala Lumpur, Connollyโ€™s remarkable journey will change the way you look at others, and the way you see yourself. (”

It’s Raining Babies!

Seems like every time I turn around someone’s having a baby!

Sarah M. became an aunt again a couple of weeks ago. Neal and Alynn had their son January 23rd. An old junior high school classmate had her baby on the 24th. Seth became an uncle January 28th. Tara went into the hospital January 29th for preeclampsia.
I was going to go up to the hospital today to visit Tara and Chris since the hospital can be a pretty boring place when you’re stuck there. However, she’s being transferred to another hospital (no visitors allowed) and will likely have her baby by Wednesday. Little Dylan will be 5 weeks early. Am hoping things go smoothly for them!
I know of a couple other people who are expecting soon.
It’s going to be fun watching the little ones grow!