Say what?

Last night Marvin and I were sitting on the couch, and the TV wasn't even on, although music was playing from his laptop, so to speak. But you could not even describe said music as loud by any stretch of the imagination. We had the following exchange.

June: Oh, you know what? I'm out of Vitamin D tablets. I should have gotten more when I went to the store today.

Marvin: We have macaroni and cheese.

June: What?

Marvin: There's a lot of macaroni and cheese. Why don't you just have that?

June: What are you TALKING about?

You guys. I'd say a quarter of our conversations deteriorate in this tragic way. We had another one like this yesterday morning in the laundry room and neither one of us can remember the particulars. But trust me. Marvin is as deaf as a post.

I know I have told you this before. It's because of his years of playing in bands and constant listening to music and earphones and I'm certain the 57 screaming kids he works with now do not help.

Why do kids have to scream? When I was a kid I did not scream. I have several relatives and a friend who has known me since I was a kid who read this blog who can back me up on this. I was pretty much the same as I am now. I sat around and drank coffee and blogged.

Anyway, you know he will not go see a doctor about this. I have a friend who when she gets sick says she's gonna take it like a man, "meaning I'm going to complain about it and not see a doctor."

But if he did see a doctor I have this vision in my head that they'd tell Marvin he was a special case, and all the highfalutin' hearing aids wouldn't work on him, and that he'd have to use one of those giant cones like they used in the olden days. He'd say, "Eh?" and have to hold that giant thing up to his ear. You know the thing I'm talking about? It kind of looked like the pointy thing they used to talk on the phone in The Flintstones.

FlinstonesStoneWilmaWD

How did they not puncture their eardrums on that phone? And God forbid they had to cradle it to take a message.

Anyway. If Marvin is this deaf at 43, imagine him at 63.

My grandmother, the one I am turning into,

Grammy

that one,

was married to my grandfather, obviously, and he, too was hard of hearing. He was in World War II, and I don't know about you, but almost everyone I knew who was in WWII got deaf eventually, probably because of the bombs and the guns and so forth. I don't know. I wasn't there. Anyway, my grandmother, the one I am turning into, talked constantly, CONSTANTLY, and my grandfather would just turn off his hearing aid.

He was a really happy person.

So maybe this is God's way of saving Marvin. He can just drift off and inventory our macaroni and cheese, you know?

I would discuss this theory with Marvin but he would never hear me. Perhaps I could take up interpretive dance and discuss it with him that way.

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Author: June

At one point, I was sort of hot, in a "she's 27 and probably a 7" kind of a way. Now I'm old and have to develop a charming personality. Guess how that's going.

51 thoughts on “Say what?”

  1. Funny post, but Hulk wins the award for funniest comment. OK, so it’s the only comment right now but I bet it will still be the funniest at the end of the day.
    After having a baby, a woman’s sense of hearing is heightened to be especially receptive to her baby’s cries. After marriage, a man’s aptitude for selective hearing improves so as to tune out his wife.

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  2. You know, I would PREFER it if Marvin would ask me, What? He never does. He pretends he knows what I said and then says nonsensical things like the macaroni and cheese. Or he just does not answer at all. Just this morning I said You know you have to go to the doctor and he asked why and I said, Because you are deaf and he replied, Why? He did NOT EVEN HEAR MY REPLY.

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  3. I love the idea of discussing through interpretive dance – if you try that, would you You Tube it please?
    My husband hears me so no problem there but he has a problem with asking dumb questions. Kinda like Marvin asking if you were getting a book to proofread. Yeah, that would so be my husband. I just look at him sometimes and wonder what planet he’s from.
    Maybe when he says something dumb I should respond through interpretive dance.

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  4. Maybe if you kept post-its handy you could write your message and slap it on a box of macaroni and cheese. This way you could hold it up for Marvin to see. It would be something he could relate to and you’d have his attention.

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  5. My husband is pretty deaf too – working with heavy equipment and no ear plugs. He refuses to get his ears checked. Just turn up the tv! Never mind that the volume hurts MY ears. He hasn’t listened to me in years so being deaf hasn’t changed a thing conversation wise.

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  6. I think it’s a husband thing. Mine can’t hear me either. I would like to blame it on his military career, like you did for your grandfather. But his career was pretty much spent behind a desk or on the golf course, so unless a pencil sharpener can make you deaf, I prettu sure it’s just the husband thing.

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  7. June, I’m 32 and I just got my first hearing aid in January (nerve damage hearing loss is thanks to an accident in high school). I put it off for nearly 15 years b/c I was embarrassed, but, well, it’s AWESOME. I hear stuff now! (Plus, turns out, LESS EMBARRASSING than saying “what” or “I’m sorry?” all the time)
    Water running AND you want to ask me a question? FIRE AWAY. TV and the AC running at the same time? NO PROBLEM. I never knew what I was missing! Also, it helps slow the decline of your hearing. Tell Marv to go ahead and go for it. Plus, it’s so stealth, you can hardly see it when I wear it. They come in colors now. Mine matches my hair, so you can’t see it behind my ear, but I could have also gotten neon green or cobalt blue. Hearing aids are the new…fashionable thing (? I couldn’t think of a cool trendy thing) that all the cool kids are wearing.

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  8. Maybe Marv isn’t really deaf. Maybe you just talk too much…

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  9. I can just picture a young, three year old Junie. Drinking her coffee & proofreading The Cat in the Hat.

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  10. June – your blog cracks me up every day! When my son was 4, I took him to an audiologist because I was SURE he was going deaf. His regular doctor said he was fine, but I was just positive something was wrong. The audiologist said he suffered from being a male and only hearing what he wants to hear. My son is 8 years old now and I have a feeling this condition only gets worse. 🙂

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  11. My grandfather didn’t have a hearing aid to turn off but he did have a riding lawn mower and a lot of acreage. He cut grass every single day. It kept him busy so that my grandmother couldn’t ask him to do anything else.
    The lady just emailed me back about Talu’s collar. I’ll email you soon.

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  12. I once witnessed this exact conversation between my parents. They were sitting about four feet apart.
    Mom: I need to run to the store and get some cigarettes.
    Dad: Why do you need toothpicks?
    Mom: I didn’t say toothpaste!
    My sisters and brothers and I have had ridiculous fits of laughter over this.
    One more: We were in the backseat and my parents agreed to play some of “our music” on a road trip. Will Smith’s “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It” was playing and we were singing along in the backseat. My dad turns to my mom and says, “What is he saying? Get the chicken ready?”

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  13. My dad compensated for his hearing loss by talking lower. One day I mentioned to my mom that I think dad needed to go to the ear doctor. Her response…”oh thank god, and I thought it was me that was going deaf”!

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  14. It could be the loud music for all these years plus the ear buds, or it is probably being MALE. My brother has always suffered from this selective hearing thing and how he’s 62, so I don’t think there is any hope.
    Just this morning I commented about hearing the birds starting to chirp right at daylight, my sweet husband said he couldn’t hear them. Do we get him tested?
    Hulk is killing me!

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  15. June…that has to be you rockin those cat-eye glasses. Your grandmother is hot!!
    One day my brother-in-law was in the basement watching tv and you could hear it upstairs. I walked half-way down the basement stairs and yelled
    “are you deaf”
    his reply: “what”?
    “ARE YOU DEAF” i yelled again.
    His response: “YES MY NAME IS JEFF”
    still cracks us up.

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  16. My poor husband is going deaf too. I sent him to the ear doctor last year when he couldn’t hear the smoke detector going off. (can you imagine missing THAT sound??)
    What he was told is that he is losing high and low range and only hears well in the middle register. And there is nothing they can do for him till he gets even more deafer! Then they will get him some fancy hearing aids.

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  17. Oh Juney…I can always count on you for a lol even in the most difficult period in my life. So freaking funny.

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  18. Ooooh, I can weigh in on this one!! I got my first pair of hearing aids when I was 30. I never heard what people were saying so I had developed this sort of all purpose “Ahh” that I tried to match the tone I said it in with the look on their face.
    A couple of years before I got my hearing aids I was laid off and didn’t even know it! I had a great boss and he called me in his office and he was talking so low I couldn’t hear him – he seemed so upset I thought he was telling me he had cancer or something. Finally I got the drift that I was being laid off, but it was about 20 minutes into the conversation. Sheesh.
    I’m on my third pair of hearing aids now – I had to graduate to the kind behind the ear but they’re purple! It’s like I have purple bike fenders behnd my ears.
    I had a great uncle who was just about completely deaf – his hearing was strapped to his chest like some kind of weird holster. And if you hugged him you got kind of electric current that sort of bound you together — sometimes I felt the fillings in my teeth start smoking…but hey, being almost deaf provides hours of fun for you and your friends!
    What? Aah?

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  19. My father has hearing aids, he is 88. He thought they stopped working. Nope he just had a nasty ear wax build up. Maybe Marvin has a waxy build up? You could do that ear coning thing, you know when you light a candle thing in the ear….google it.
    It would be fun, you could sing, blow and the candle and make a wish.

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  20. My husband is only 32 but after he said ‘wha?’ and ‘hu?’ fifty times in one day I made him get checked. Seems he had a lot of wax built up and it took the nurse a couple minutes to clean it out. He’s so much better now!

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  21. Around my house we call it “male pattern deafness.” I have told Furry that if she wants my attention, say “Terra, blah blah ruff ruff…” Not “blah, ruff, ruff, blah blah Terra” at which point, having heard my name, I am paying attention. I reckon it’s from years of having dogs underfoot. Or being male.

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  22. I have to say Terra is totally right – ya gotta say my name at the beginning so I can slowly process the sound of my name and turn in several directions before discerning where the faint whispering is coming from…

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  23. I am almost completely deaf in my seft ear and can’t hear out the other. Honestly my ex-asshole hit me upside the head and deafened me. I digress.
    My dead is deaf in his right ear. When we get together we have to arrange ourselves so that his good ear and my good ear are together otherwise we have conversations that sound like:
    Daddy: How was your flight?
    Me: I don’t want to fight either. Why would you want to fight?
    Daddy: Well thats good they fed you on the plane they hardly do that anymore.
    Me: Yes I’ll make some’mores later. Now why do you want to fight?
    Daddy: Yes those racoons have become a blight.
    Well you get the idea. He is no longer allowed to drive when we are together or we have some real doozy conversations.

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  24. My dad is both losing his hearing, and in denial. My step mom is a mumbler, so whenever she has to repeat herself (which is EVERY.SINGLE.TIME), its always with a disgust and contempt. Some marriages are made in heaven.

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  25. If you take up interpretive dancing as a means of communication, I demand video! Of course, you’ll have to get Talu and Henry and… Oh crud. Brain fart. Black kitty and gray kitty. Why can I not remember their names?!
    Anyway. You’ll have to get them in on the act. Because watching the 6 of you waltzing around the house “talking” about, oh, say… Macaroni. Would be quite a treat!

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  26. Winston! And Francis! Your post button must have magical memory recall properties, since I thought of the names just as I hit post comment.
    You should market that out to all the elderly homes, where I’m sure Fred and Wilma Flintstone are hanging out, so everybody can remember all the things that led them to be in that place.
    On second thought… Maybe not.

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  27. You should get Marvin one of those cones that they make dogs were to keep from biting themselves. All of the sound would be concentrated toward Marvin’s ears.

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  28. Oh my word, I can relate to this! We ought to stick Marvin and my hubs in a room together. His hearing is gone because of all his band years and our three boys, one of whom is trying to lose his hearing quicker than his father, ARGH! Then they all (because it’s four males to one female) tell me my hearing is sensitive. I’m going to make them all sensitive…(grumble, grumble, grumble)

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  29. I think that thing is called an “ear trumpet” and how hilarious is that? Just me? Ok.
    I heart that picture of your Grammy.
    My father was hard of hearing and my mother was a chatterbox extraordinaire (she would talk to ANYONE, so help me) so I definitely think the two are related. I think Dad started to go deaf just because he could.
    My husband and my son watch tv with it turned up so ding dang loud I can’t hear myself think. I don’t think they are deaf (yet), I think it is part of the tv-watching experience. Seriously, the walls rattle. We call it Testosterone Theater.

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  30. I think that thing is called an “ear trumpet” and how hilarious is that? Just me? Ok.
    I heart that picture of your Grammy.
    My father was hard of hearing and my mother was a chatterbox extraordinaire (she would talk to ANYONE, so help me) so I definitely think the two are related. I think Dad started to go deaf just because he could.
    My husband and my son watch tv with it turned up so ding dang loud I can’t hear myself think. I don’t think they are deaf (yet), I think it is part of the tv-watching experience. Seriously, the walls rattle. We call it Testosterone Theater.

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  31. I think that thing is called an “ear trumpet” and how hilarious is that? Just me? Ok.
    I heart that picture of your Grammy.
    My father was hard of hearing and my mother was a chatterbox extraordinaire (she would talk to ANYONE, so help me) so I definitely think the two are related. I think Dad started to go deaf just because he could.
    My husband and my son watch tv with it turned up so ding dang loud I can’t hear myself think. I don’t think they are deaf (yet), I think it is part of the tv-watching experience. Seriously, the walls rattle. We call it Testosterone Theater.

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  32. In my house, it’s the rest of my family who is trying to make me think that I’m going deaf and they do this by mumbling while turned away from me or by speaking in a slurred yet rapid patter at which point I say, “Huh?” and then I get the eye roll and they repeat themselves in a garbled mix of words that are spoken while once again turned away from me.
    I do have a hard time participating in conversations if there is a lot of background noise. What I hear is Charlie Brown’s teacher talking, all “wah wah wah.”

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  33. We currently have the store-brand kind with the powdered because were short of cash, but when were flush we have the oozy cheese kind, which is so much better. And we go Kraft when times are good.

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  34. I swear Macaroni and Cheese has special powers…if world leaders had some mac & cheese we’d be in much better shape.

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  35. I just yelled at my half deaf husband that I was sick of repeating myself four times just so he could give me the answer to a question I didn’t even ask and he’d better get himself one of those cones to hold up to his ear so he could hear me properly.
    ‘Huh?’ sez he.

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  36. Wait just one minute…the voices in my head are supposed to be LOUDER…
    awe come on..
    “push the number 13 on the elevator”…
    “we don’t have an elevator”…
    “awe heck push it anyway”….
    and there we go to the thirteenth floor in a 3 story townmouse….
    when we push the Eastern Star button Henry is at the door

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