I’m sure you have all experienced this. You get behind a driver with his/her turn signal on for miles and miles and miles. I know I have and I may have even uttered a disparaging remark like “that guy doesn’t belong on the road”. Well now, sad to say, I am that guy.
Due to hearing loss in the upper ranges, I have difficulty with sounds that are high pitched, such as car directional signals. Oh, thankfully, I’m not deaf. My lower range hearing is perfect and fortunately that encompasses the majority of sounds and noises of everyday life. Like you, I have to cover my ears when I pull up next to a car whose driver feels I need to know every note and lyric of the latest rap hit.
You may or may not know this, but human speech falls into the high range hearing spectrum. Women are tougher than men to understand. I know guys, you’re saying to yourself “and this is a bad thing because….?” Well, I happened to enjoy conversing with women. How else would I know that 90% of the things I say are wrong.
Children are also hard for me. My granddaughters get a good laugh almost every day when they tell me something and then wait for me to tell them what I heard. It’s like I have translated it into a foreign language. You know the game where a person tells another person a story and that person passes it on to another and so on and so on and it completely changes. Well, I can do that with a one on one conversation. Cool, huh? Teenage girls might as well be speaking Sanskrit. They talk like they are taking a final exam in a speed-speaking course.
I know what you’re thinking. Duh! Hearing aids! I’m on my second generation of state of the art hearing aids. While it helps some, it does not “fix” your hearing like glasses “fix” your eyesight. Basically, with hearing aids, I just misunderstand people at a higher volume. And while it may make the directional signal louder, it also amplifies the road noise thereby nullifying the benefit.
So the next time you get behind one of “those” people, strike a blow for the hearing impaired (translated: old guys) and cut them some slack. Just think of your old pal, Al.