Wednesday, October 17, 2012


For those of you not in the know, I work as a sort-of sign language interpreter. I say sort-of, because I'm not technically an interpreter. I work with students who have cognitive disabilities as well as being Deaf, so my job consists of taking classroom content, condensing it into easier to understand tidbits, and then translating those tidbits into ASL (American Sign Language). An actual interpreter would do classroom content to ASL and skip the middle step.

Side note: what is the difference between and interpreter and a translator? Besides the fact that one is spelled -er and the other is -or, although they're phonetically said the same? I'm genuinely curious. Spoken languages are translated (i.e. English into Spanish), but spoken language to Sign is an interpretation. I think I have the beginnings of a very deep discussion about this brewing, but at the risk of sounding too stoned, I'll skip it for now.

I sometimes wonder about the parallels between the job that I do and my particular lifestyle proclivity. I'm not a big fan about making comparisons between cultural minorities. I'm not trying to say that somehow the Deaf experience is similar to mine. I'm just saying that it's cathartic sometimes for me to answer the increasingly stupid questions people ask about deafness, when I can't always answer stupid questions about poly in the same manner.

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