Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Is This Thing On?

I recently asked my coworkers to be honest with me about a possible Truman Show situation happening in the restaurant. Everyone remained silent, only helping to solidify my theory. 

This was an exchange I had with an older customer the other day. It's important to know that I'm a middle child and have been asked to repeat myself all of my life because no one was listening the first time. As a result, I don't enjoy repeating myself. It's equally important to know that I grew up with a very loud family that used outdoor voices to speak to people 2-feet away. The volume always increased when discussing food. This killed me as a kid and to this day, it actually pains me to yell indoors.  

OK, so those points are made. Here's the scene:
-And what would you like as your side, sir?
-Your side?
-What's your vegetable?
-We have broccolini tonight.
-[Deep breath] Broccolini?
-[Raising my voice a little]: BROCCO-LINI. BROCCOLINI.
It's long broccoli. 
[Leaning closer] BROCCOLINI. It's like long skinny broccoli.
Sure, fine, broccoli.

And then I burst into tears.

You try shouting broccolini into a stranger's ear without thinking you're being secretly filmed. 



I used to work in phone customer service and frequently spoke to customers with hearing problems. I wore a headset and one day I had to put the microphone 100 percent into my mouth just to get the gentleman to hear me. True story.

andrea said...

vanessa is the same, she absolutely refuses to repeat anything i say "pardon?" to. so maybe not repeating isn't a middle child thing? the problem is that especially in the winter she is super bundled so i tend to miss a lot of words and her refusal to repeat things has instilled the fear of god in me to make sure i hear everything. i actually have invested in hearing aids (partly for sound amplification and mostly because i love those little batteries) so that i have super power hearing around her.

so my grandmother's hearing worsened over time and she finally agreed to get hearing aids. she hates them and thinks they dont work. whenever i call her, she picks up the phone and the first thing she says is "hold on, i can't hear you, let me remove my hearing aids." irony?

your post made me laugh because i have been hanging out a lot with her lately and to overcome your broccoli problem i find myself using stronger facial expressions and opening my mouth wider when i speak as if that improves her hearing. either i do that or just chop the broccolini so it becomes broccoli.

Jess said...


andrea- I think it's funny that you always say "pardon?" No one really says, "pardon?" anymore. And whenever I hear you say it, I want to say, "Pawwww-dun?" with a thick British accent. I have to literally stop myself.

Your grandmother sounds like the cutest. "Don't call me at 3, I'll be walking the halls."

So FREAKING excited for this weekend!!!

andrea is rumored to have said...

what's this weekend?

Jess said...


i've been hiding Martha Cookie Turner for about 2 months and I'm surprising Ness by bringing her to dinner Saturday night. Shhh, don't tell.