Today is a very, very important day: it is the 4th anniversary of my bat mitzvah. (Yes, I am that old!!!) But, more importantly, it is the WEDDING DAY of WILLIAM and KATE.
If you don't know who these two are: they are the HRH Prince William, son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, and the Princess-to-Be Kate Middleton. To honor the two newlyweds, here are a few fun facts about royalty, the wedding and hearing loss:
My mom sent me this photo for Easter! Enjoy!
It can do a million things, while weigh next to nothing. It can speak a myriad of languages, including French and Japanese. It can tell time down to the second and can help those who are deaf/hoh. What is this magical thing? It is nothing more than the great iPad.
The iPad--Apple's version of the tablet computer--was first launched in 2010 to compete with the emerging market. Criticized for being an oversized iPhone or for creating American unemployment (Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.
), the iPad has helped those with disabilities interact with the world.
iPad Apps such as Danny the Dragon Meets Jimmy feature sign language and IP-Relay allow you to make TTY phone calls. Other apps like iASL is are American Sign Language video dictionaries and translators. To learn about 10 Useful Applications for the deaf/hoh, go hear. Enjoy,
P.S. I realize that I wrote "hear," not "here."
Meet Joe Mac:
Or at least his creator, Joey McIntyre: American singer, song-writer, and actor. Formerly a member of the '80s band "New Kids on the Block," he is now a professional dancer (A.K.A. Dancing with the Stars), Hallmark Channel Star, and father. With his wife--Barrett Williams--, he has three children, one of whom is on the way. His middle child Rhys Edward was born in 2009 with a severe hearing loss.
The McIntyres went public with the news about Rhys's hearing loss shortly after his birth. As a family, they are trying to educate the world of the importance of early diagnosis. Now, nearly two years later, the songster belts out a few more words. Not on stage, but to People Magazine
about the need for early testing.
In the interview (copied below), McIntyre discusses his son's hearing loss, his Hear the World PSA and the upcoming birth of his third child:
Two of their products!
When I was little, I couldn't wait until I turned 13 years old (A.K.A. the age that my parents decided I could get my ears pierced.) During my tween years, I would pretend that they were by wearing clip-ons from Claire's or by half-believing that the hearing aid boots for my FM were, in fact, earrings.
Well, times have changed. There are now far cooler ways to pretend that your ears are pierced. For instance, Hayleigh's Cherished Charms
created quasi-earrings that are attachable not to your ear, but to your hearing aid. The company, founded by a tween, sells different pieces of "jewelry" that can spice up your hearing aids. From multi-colored tubes (as seen above) to semi-precious "earrings," the site sells everything to fulfill your t(w)een desires for pierced ears at a relatively low price.
What do you think? Would you wear them?
I thought that you all should watch this clip from the TED Conference, even though it is not directly related to deafness, rather about how one's disability should not limit one. It is AMAZING
! Quick context:
Speaker: Caroline Casey
Disability: Legally Blind
Fun Fact: Didn't know that she was legally blind until she was 17!
P.S. Note: there are no captions. :(
P.P.S. If you can't fully see the video, go HERE
to watch it.
Since 1985, Nikita has been a name that has influenced culture. Excluding any historical details and politicians from Eastern Europe, the Western world first learned of a female Nikita in a song. In 1985, Elton John serenaded, in his single Nikita, a beautiful (... but imaginary) GDR [East German Cold War-era] borderguard named Nikita whom he cannot meet, since he is not allowed into the country. The single song influenced the naming of many young woman as it moved from being the 959th most popular name to being the 250th in the year following the release of the song, including that of the protagonist--Nikita--in the 1990 French film of a similar name, "La Femme Nikita," which received a cult-like following. Although, today, many may not recognize the film, people will certainly recognize the story (which was remade four times) from the current CW television series, "Nikita," which stars Maggie Q, Shane West and Lyndsy Fonseca.
On screen, Maggie Q stars as Nikita, a former spy and assassin who has gone rogue, but can throw an amazing punch. In reality, she is not so different. Having trained professionally under actor and action choreographer guru Jackie Chan, she can perform all her own martial art stunts (... though she is not a spy!). But, not all stunts require a slug to the chin and a kick to the balls (Sorry guys! Seriously...)! That is why guns, bombs and swords were invented [I am joking!]. Well, Q
became deaf in one ear after her eardrum was blown out in an explosive stunt.
As people have always said, movie sets are dangerous places, where people can become hurt in numerous ways. [I mean why else would Wally always get lost on a movie set???] Switching a real knife for a fake can kill a person, while the sound of fake bombs can make people lose their hearing. Other stars, besides Maggie Q, who have lost their hearing or gained tinnitus on set due to fake guns and bombs are:
Spring break has finally (sadly) ended, after two weeks of exams and college visiting. Yet, I now get to happily return to both my classmates and my exiting classes. In school, I take the basic core classes: History, Math, Science, French and English.
I love how I learn a lot of really interesting things in school, such as how snafu is really an acronym for Situation Normal All Fouled Up [You can plug in the expletive]. Another cool piece of information was this quote (below) that I came across in English class.
For English, I read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, a historical fictional novel about a young boy named Huckleberry Finn, who escapes his home along with a slave named Jim. The story follows their adventures together as they travel down the Mississippi River using a raft. Reading the story, I was fascinated when I came across this quote, where Jim is speaking to Huck about his family:
You may not know this, but I can speak 1.75 languages. I, obviously, speak English, but I can also mutter some French
. On top of that, I lipread. Yes, lipread
Lipreading (a.k.a. understanding speech from observing a speaker's lip movements) helps people who are deaf/hoh understand language. A person who can lipread understands what one is saying simply from one's mouth movements. The interesting thing about lipreading is that although one is seeing the mouth move, one refers to it as hearing. The New York Times aptly captured this scene in an article where a doctor, "turned away from her [a patient who was deaf] as I was speaking. 'I can no longer hear you,' she said sharply. 'You mean you can no longer see me,' I said. 'You may call it seeing,' she answered, 'but I experience it as hearing.'"
Personally, I first learned lipreading when I was four years old. Flash-forward to today, twelve years later: I am utterly dependent on it (in addition to my hearing aids) when I converse. So, if you see me staring at your lips, do not
think that I am strange!!!!!
Whenever people learn that I can lipread, their usually immediate reaction is, "OMG!!! That's so cool. Try reading this." Then they mouth something, usually 'My name is---.' When I guess what they are saying correctly, I become a plaything for them to show off to their friends. While this can ultimately be annoying, I like to have some fun with them.