I've had lots of experiences like yours with little kids asking me stuff. It never bothered me at all, and neither does being approached by anyone to ask me questions.
What I always found odd was that while sighted children were always discouraged from asking me questions, no one ever tried to stop me from asking other people questions. I'm not sure if this was because my mom and dad knew that I was going to drive them crazy asking if I didn't get my information from someone else, or if it was because other people thought it was just a blind behavior and would excuse me for it.
And I guess just as sighted people want to know what's it like to be blind, blind people want to know what it's like to be sighted. My last great question of the century, (before I turned 10 and decided asking strange questions was embarrassing), was to ask all of my close sighted friends what it was like to see. Let's just say that there were some really really interesting reactions.
----- Original Message ----- From: "Neal Ewers" <neal.ewers@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 12:53
Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
Good points all. That's how people learn about how it is to be blind. One can't expect them to know unless they ask. I simply meant that it is curious what people ask sometimes. But I would rather they ask than just assume. What I find sad is represented by the story below. This recently happened to me.
I was standing at the bus stop when a little girl came up to me and said, "Hi Mister, are you blind?"
I said that I was. "Wow" she said, that's cool" and she started asking me questions. Just then her mother came out of a nearby store and said to her daughter, "Honey, let's go, you shouldn't bother that man." "But mother", I heard her say as they moved away, "I was just asking questions." "Well," said her mother, "you shouldn't go bothering people like that."
I am often impressed at the canter that little children have. They want to know everything. It's only when the adult comes along, that this willingness to learn sometimes becomes a lesson in how not to learn anything at all because one shouldn't ask questions of people who are different. Let's hear it for children and their desire to know.
-----Original Message----- From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of lance Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 12:49 PM To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
Totally logical!! Lance
-----Original Message----- From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of M. Dimitt Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 8:25 AM To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
I don't find sighted people asking me questions annoying. in fact, I'd rather they ask whatever they want too, rather than simply wondering and
being afraid to ask. Curiosity is a natural part of humanity. Oh boy, did I just sound like Spock
from Star Trek? Haha!
----- Original Message ----- From: "J Garcia" <j.garcia235@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 11:18 AM
Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
Regarding what people hear, its true that some of us hear better and more than others, but you are really asking a sensation or perception question. You can get an entire group of subjects and give them all the same auditory sensation with the same tone and amplitude, and they
lawwill hear the sound within a certain human range. On the other hand, you will probably get different perceptions of this sound from these subjects--its sounds good, it sounds, bad, it sounds like screeching, it reminds me of my mother inand so on. Basically, with various sensation measuring devices most ofuswith normal senses can convey exactly what we and other normal peoplelikeus hear, its what these perceptions mean to us that walls begin topresenthuman'sthemselves. What is fundamental about human hearing is that we can potentially hear sound ranging from 20 db to 20,000 db but mostseen inhearing is not always that sensitive or able to put up with such an assault. The notion of subjective sensitivity and invariable ranges is alsovision. For example, most sighted people on the average only see about
400-7001000 colors per day from a possible pool of millions of colors in theattentiveNM visual range. We can also increase what we sense by being moreknow,to subtle details as is the case for musicians. For those who didn'tmusicians Have Larger Auditory Areas in the human brain. That is,theirresponse of the auditory cortex to piano tones is greater for themthan innonmusicians. Attending to stimuli is the key phrase. You might alsowantto know that the human brain is very malleable and very resilient so when
deficitsthere is a deficit in a sensation, the human brain will make up for itswillby allocating more processing power or neural tissue to the deficient parts of your brain. In other words, if you can't see, your auditory cortexrearrange itself and increase its sensitivity to subtle sounds to makeupfor the visual deficit. I remember once I dropped some change on acementdofloor and was able to tell my buddy the exact coins I dropped. He was amazed at this because he couldn't do it because he had absolutely no need toso. I on the other hand did because when dropping something on thefloor,aboutsit helps out a blind person to focus on the sound to determine wherethethe item fell. The neural restructuring also happens for missing limbs ascase for phantom limbs. Phantom limbs happen to people with missinglegsofor arms and often complain that their missing arm or leg is hurting or itching. This is due to the rearranging of neural tissue in the parietal lobesubjectivelythe brain--this is right at the very top of your head. This is aInegative result of restructuring of neural tissue.
The question about sighted people asking us blind people what we can and cannot hear is not a dumb question at all. In fact its an opportunity for us to break down walls between the sighted world and ourselves, so such questions shouldn't be seen as a nuisance but more like a natural curiosity of all our human minds and its incessant hunger for information.
----- Original Message ----- From: "Sam Bushman" <sam@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> To: <blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 8:54 AM Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
That sounds interesting. But, keep in mind ... they will only be able to hear as well as they can hear. Meaning that if you can hear great, and I can't hear to well, then if they created a way for me to hear what you hear ... it may not work sincecan'thear all they are representing. Sam
----- Original Message ----- From: "Neal Ewers" <neal.ewers@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> To: <blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 9:48 AM Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing
>I have often wondered about how much or little people think before >they ask certain questions. Not long ago, I got it again. "What >can you hear that I don't hear?" A bit too much scotch perhaps. >How do I really know what someone else is hearing. However, there >is a research project at the University of Wisconsin that looks at >a person's very sophisticated hearing tests and then tries to >replicate what they might hear in a given situation. So, you can >actually put on headphones and hear what someone else might hear in
each of>a given situation. It's fascinating. I often have to stop and >realize how lucky I have been to be able to work at Trace and >consult with other researchers here. There is a lot to learn out >there. > > Neal > > -----Original Message----- > From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx > [mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of M. Dimitt > Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 10:42 AM > To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx > Subject: [bct] Re: more thoughts on hearing > > > Pam: > I really liked that observation you said, that for each of us due > to > our > > lack of vision and hearing, we will perceive things differently. > We're not all cut out of the same cloth so to speak. when sighted > people ask what it's > like to be blind, you can give them a generic response, but forpeople,> us,
> it's a little bit different.
> Jamie D.
> ----- Original Message ----- > From: "Pam Quinn" <quinn.family@xxxxxxxxx>
> To: <blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 7:52 AM
> Subject: [bct] more thoughts on hearing
> Talking about this, individual realities for each of us depending
> normalcy of our hearing and vision and what not, brings a few more
> things to mind. I'm sure we've all been questioned by sighteddark?"> and have been asked such things as, "Aren't you afraid of theon."> When I had an attack of severe hearing loss once and was terrified > beyond anything I've ever experienced, I thought about that and > realized, "My God! For us as blind people, the lights are alwaysthat> Only when hearing is gone are we plunged into true darkness, andto a> is > a scary thing. > > I also wanted to mention that I am constantly in awe of these > stereo podcasts, and am so thankful that whatever happens down the > road for me, I've had the opportunity to enjoy them. I just can't > get over the wonder > of the feeling of actually being right there when listening with > headphones especially. I think these stereo digital recordings areSomebody> blind person what high definition TV is to a sighted person.of> told me that on high definition TV, you can actually see each blademy> grass and such. That's the type of high definition picture I get in> mind when listening to these awesome podcasts. So thanks again to > everyone who is a part of the wonder that is blindcooltech. > > Pam > > > > >
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