5 years ago
|Otto and Victoria characters via Deviant Art. I can't in good conscience post more |
than this, as he's a pro and doesn't deserve to have stuff stolen! Copyrights, kids!
|Cover art was done by Mike Vosburg, of "Tales From the Crypt" fame. |
Sorry it looks squished on the video!
|Image via Open Salon. I so want to do something like this!|
"Many people stop reading once they get out of school, even though learning should really never stop.
That said, what book are you reading right now? I'll start it off:So what books are you reading? Go!
I'm reading Terry Pratchett's "The Fifth Elephant" and Peter Cushing's Memoirs."
|Cory, at West Coast Haunters Convention last week.|
Deaf Kids Don't Listen
By Cory Hunt
One of the great joys of my life is being with people who are enthusiastic, curious, willing to be themselves and let you be you. I have always tended to find myself drawn to the outcast of society. And, pretty quickly, I realized that we are all outcasts in our own minds. There is a whole side topic in this thought that I am going to shy away from.
Because what I want to talk about are some awesome deaf kids, their cool teachers, and how they hear us better than we hear ourselves. More importantly: the lessons that we can learn from them and how to better work with them.
I have never been deaf. I have been hit hard and sometimes had the wind knocked out of me. The greatest result being the weird underwater sound where echoes and voices like The Peanut's teacher come through... or the overwhelming wheezing noise my diaphragm is making as I try to draw in breath.
So, the closest thing I have is when I wear earplugs at the shooting range...but trust me...that isn't deaf...it is impaired...but it isn't deaf.
This weekend I spent having a great time at West Coast Haunters Convention. This is an amazing event that helps raise money for the Oregon School for the Deaf. (www.westcoasthauntersconvention.com) If you watch Extreme Home Makeover you might have seen the episode where the boys "prison plan" dorm was completely revamped... as well as their haunted house. Their haunt raises money for their school and helps cover costs that as a society we don't even consider.
The school is a k-12 with programs that extend until kids are 21, teaching life and survival skills they will need to try and thrive in a hearing world. That is a HUGE chunk of time, training, and funds for a school where the kids spend all week there and go home on weekends. This school is their FAMILY...in many senses of the word. And these teachers and staff see them as their children.
Last year I taught a class on queue line acting and safety necessary for being an effective "line worker" in a haunted house. I managed to do alright...but I realized something after teaching this class.
I explained what I do as a line actor: I listen to the sound of feet approaching behind me, cars, and the whispered "Thank God he isn't coming over here," which acts as an instant summoning and when people call each other's name (so I can yell "SARAH!" as I am chasing them. The monster knowing you is scary). I also taught the importance of some of the other visual cues and safety in numbers lessons.
I realize now half of what I do when I am working a queue line is hearing. Half. That means JUST BEING WHO THEY ARE these kids are going to miss half the cues and be HALF as SAFE as I am...
More importantly they won't be able to protect themselves from that surprise "asshat" (technical term for people who would go to Disneyland and attack an actor in costume because it is "funny." Kind of like I think it is funny to duct tape an "asshat's" face to an exhaust pipe.)
This year I made some more connections in the category of "Man, Cory, you are dense and completely oblivious to other people's challenges category."
A deaf person can be deaf for many reasons. It could be injury, accident, chemical issues (medication causing it as a side effect), from birth issues, genetic...and many others I am probably missing. Again, I am not an expert, and having just realized it...obviously needing education.
So, in addition to being deaf there might be some issues with field of vision. Now imagine not being able to hear like many of us who take it for granted. Now put a paper tube about 12" wide and 3' long fastened to your face with the open end blocking all of your peripheral vision. Two of your senses are inhibited...how would I get your attention across a room, warn you of impending danger, or even just let you know I was there?
Now, how do I teach to you? Especially with a powerpoint, a demo, and an interpreter? Or what if no interpreter is available Or two instructors and the class talking amongst themselves, some of whom share really great ideas. Ideas beget ideas...my brain internally explodes from an overheard snippet that links to other things tucked in the dark recesses... and these awesome, brilliant, imaginative, hard working kids might be missing these.
These are issues that I need to consider when I present at WCHC. And, in the future will do a better job.
I then had another revelation. If you can't hear you don't listen. Wait... I know, sounds intuitive. But that means you pay a whole lot more attention to mannerism, facial expression, and micro expressions... which would be necessary extensions for social survival in a hearing world. So, everything that is telegraphed to the deaf is scrutinized because they don't have the distraction of tone of voice.
Sign language reduces most synonyms to one basic gesture. That means that sarcasm, one of my favorite and beloved tools, may not translate. Nor would many puns. I would like a moment of silence as I grieve.
It also means that the deaf person had to choose to watch what you are demonstrating OR what the interpreter is signing if they aren't in the same field of view. I also have to change my normal high energy pacing. Sigh.
So, in summary, it isn't a problem of these wicked awesome kids not being how they hear. It is a problem of how we present our world to them. I would love to have comments, suggestions and products ideas on how to bring our world to them in a better way.
It isn't that they don't listen...I just haven't learned how to speak.
|On the left, two plates I made for Jeff Davis, of Davis Graveyard. |
The Monster is the latest addition.
HAUNTING GURU INTERVIEW:Enjoy the show! Subscribe (or resubscribe)! Stay Scary!
Ben Armstrong of Netherworld Haunted House and Halloween Extreme.GHOULIE GROOVES:
The rockin’ undead sounds of Cold Blue Rebels.SHOCKTAILS:
JT’s back with brews and reviews of Aftershock, American Mary & Hate Crime and more.THE BLACK MARKET:
A conversation with Riley Cameron of Nevermore Productions.THE MARKETING MORGUE:
The Voice From Hell gives your haunt advertising a Morbid Makeover.THEATER OF THE MIND:
Revenant with the intertwined systems of nature and growing the perfect haunt.THE CHARMED POT:
The Mistress of Mayhem shares her burning itch and love for the 1973 classic horror film,The Wicker Man.THE PROP SHOP:
Denny and Chris present the life of a professional prop builder in Vegas.TERROR TURNPIKE:
Vysther with a collection of family-friendly haunts in and near Dayton, Ohio.SOMETHING WICKED:
Wick-Ed Gannon talks adding production value with finishing touches to your haunt.MAD PROPS FOR PROPS:
We go all the way down for Pete Pawlicki’s Hell-evator prop.PLUS!…
This month we give away a $350 Static Spider Prop and a $350 Egg Sack prop fromNevermore Productions, some $25 gift certificates from Master Fog, and a Shocktail Hour T-shirt.
Congratulations to our winners this month: Matt Legg (Static Spider prop), Troy Philpott (Egg Sack prop), Thomas Roach & Chris Ainsworth (Master Fog gift certificates), and Donald Powers (Shocktail Hour Tee).