A Sign You Shouldn’t Worry Too Much

, , , , , | Right | March 10, 2019

(I happen to know American Sign Language. I’m not fluent, but I can carry on a conversation easily. When I work retail, I let deaf customers know so they can sign if they prefer it — for example, people writing questions on pieces of paper or having a family member interpret. A particular deaf customer makes sure he only comes in on my normally-scheduled days because he can communicate with me more easily than he can with my coworkers. One day he is checking out and we have a brief conversation in sign, with no talking, of course. He pays for his purchases and leaves. I turn to the next customer in line, who looks nervous as he approaches my counter.)

Me: *out loud, using my voice* “Did you find everything you needed today?”

Customer: *lets out a big sigh of relief* “Oh, I saw you signing with the other man and thought you were deaf! I was trying to figure out how to talk to you and understand you when it was my turn!”

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