Friday 28 November 2008

Like a murder of crows - that's all

Praise be to Tarzan (may peace be upon Him) and all of his heavenly monkey-angels and Boy. It’s been a beautiful day today, as it was yesterday and the day before that and the day before that, too. Crisp and sunny, bright and true, scorching if you duck from the wind.

Plus, this morning, I got the chance to stare at some deaf people using sign language - a treat beyond sensible measure.

Spooky, but during my ceaselessly unattractive whine about the noise of other people (see below) I was actually going to mention the fact that sign language may very well be the answer.

Esperanto was always a dangerous idea and would merely add to the gibbering mouth bedlam menacing our streets – that much is clear. But signing? Well, I’m suddenly a little bit in favour of this language being adopted universally. Through force, if necessary. (Can you imagine how good Radio One would sound? Or football fans? Oh my.)

One time, in Glasgow Central Station, I saw a fiercely argumentative hush of deafs. Fifteen to twenty strong, these people were signing most wildly, fingers whirring, hands a-blur, arms going quite steadily mental. It was slightly unsettling at first, truth to tell, but totally, blissfully, silent. Like watching Italians on TV with the mute button activated. Perfect.

(Unless, of course, they do that clacking thing with their mouths in an attempt to form words whilst signing. Wtf? Why bother trying to speak through your face at the same time? Is it not enough that you’re talking with your fingers? Jeez. Nobody likes a show-off.)

Anyway, I can’t really do much signing (yet), although I could probably still just about manage howdy-doody and sorry, I’m not a deaf. Are you a deaf? What’s it like? Can you do anything special? But this may hardly be conducive towards good community relations.

Italians though. Phew. That’s a nation of deaf people just waiting to happen. Come the (silent) revolution, they’ll be well ahead of the game. Brazenly au fait with the new demands, they will barely miss a beat as they go about their flailingly expressive business, silently, with their mouths surgically shut. (Yes, I can see the early days of the revolution requiring some regrettably firm action, I’m afraid, but this should pass soon enough.)


So, the people I saw signing today. Genius. It always draws me in. And I was able to stare for just as long as I wanted as the brightness of the day demanded sunglasses and sunglasses allow for surreptitious gawping. If you’re not simply blown away by the complexity and magic of sign language....well, try harder.

Anyhoo, my lovely, oblivious, deaf-heads, super sorry about the disability and everything - or super hurrah, I should say, that you find yourselves enabled not to hear anything (must must must keep up with modern terminology) - but this sign language thing totally rules and may yet guide us all to a quietly golden future. Lead on.

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