Day 119: Sense-less day.Posted: April 29, 2011
“Go through today without using your sense of hearing.”
This was one of those logistically-challenging tasks: how do I simulate deafness for a day?
There’s the obvious solution: I could have worn earplugs all day, which would have muted everything, though not made the world around me completely silent. They get uncomfortable after a few hours, though, and if there’s one thing I don’t like, it’s being uncomfortable. I could have shirked all of my responsibilities and hidden out somewhere where nobody would have spoken to me, and been very quiet all day. I’m not entirely sure why I didn’t do this, actually – I’m sure my students would have appreciated a day off, especially considering only about half of them showed up for class.
Because there wasn’t a good (and reversible) way to go through the day without my sense of hearing, I just pretended to not be able to hear anything. People asked me questions, and I ignored them. This was especially fun during class, because the students (who actually showed up) had lots of questions about their final papers, which are due Monday … and I didn’t answer a single one, because I “couldn’t hear them.” Probably not going to help my evaluations at all, but I think it was worth it.
Honestly, though, I sometimes feel as if my students are the ones pretending not to hear anything: blank faces, empty stares, jaws slack, drool dribbling down their chins – they’re like lobotomy patients, but they’re doing it on purpose, the little bastards. I love asking questions and getting silence as a response: it’s annoying enough when my three-year-old does it, but I expect college students – who are practically adults, for fuck’s sake – to answer questions asked of them without an undue amount of prodding.
It’s never going to happen, though, is it?