My sister has a friend named Chris who is quite brilliant at composing and playing the piano. There is only one strange thing about him: he’s deaf. Yes, I know that even Beethoven was deaf, but I don’t even believe that Chris is that brilliant. Besides, he’s only deaf without his hearing aids in.

I first meet Chris when I came to visit my sister. We were sitting around with a bunch of her friends, playing games, just generally joking around. I had noticed that Chris had a pretty good since of humor, so when I said something and he looked at me and said "what?" I yelled at him "What are you!? Deaf!?" Of course everyone stopped instantly where they were and turned to look at me. How could I be so oblivious as not to notice this poor boy’s handicap!? How could I be so insensitive!? Truth is, I was perfectly aware that Chris was deaf, I was also perfectly aware that he could handle any taunting towards his infirmity that I could throw at him. I even knew that perhaps he had never had anyone taunt him for being deaf. The moment was too great to let me pass by. As everyone was suspended in shock, Chris turns to me, trying now to laugh, but unable to hold it back.

Now, I really wish I had some great moral to this story, some lesson to be had, but there is none. But even today, we are still great friends and I continue to taunt him for his deafness. My personal favorite taunt is that whenever he doesn’t hear me, just b/c I’m speaking too softly, or mumbling, I stomp on the floor several times and yell "check your battery!" So I guess there is a moral to this story: Make fun of hearing impaired people, they’ll love you for it!