With a scowl on her face, the elderly woman leaned toward the counter between her and the fruitier, “what was that you said?”
Boldly, the young man replied, "Sorry Ma’am, didn’t realize you was 'ard of ‘earing. Sex. You said you wanted sex, was it now?” Not one for putting up with the shenanigans of smart young fellows, the woman repeated, “SIX. HALF A DOZEN Chinese gooseberries thank you very much!”
Knowingly, the young man said “Okay ma’am, sex it is but you know, they aint Chinese gooseberries!” Leaning back across the counter towards the visibly annoyed woman, the young man with the cocky attitude looked at her, “actually, they’s Kiwi fruit ‘nd sweet as me they’d be. Just the thing for a young lady like you, Ma’am!”
Dreadfully embarrassed and realizing her mistake, the elderly woman rather shyly said “oh dear, what a silly old lady I am. Please forgive me. I didn’t know you were from New Zealand.”
Looking rather relieved, the young man grinned cheekily as he handed over a bag containing the fruit. Sounding happy, “You come back any time now love. I’ll make sure you get the best we have!” said the fruitier.
Collecting her bags, the woman replied, “now that I know why you pronounce six in such a funny way, I’ll be back!”
So it is for those of us with spasmodic dysphonia. Just as people speaking to each other with different accents can be easily misunderstood, we too can be difficult to understand. The harsh sound of speech through spasming vocal cords and the broken up sound of words sometimes makes it hard for us to project what it is we are saying.
For people who come across others who have this speech disability, we would like you to know, there is nothing wrong with our cognitive functioning. We know what it is we want to say, it just takes a little time. Please, be patient with us. Communication is so much more than just prattling off words. Together, we can work through speech difficulties and move forward in confidence and friendship.
If you would like to ask any questions or leave a comment of some other kind, please do. You are most welcome. Where ever you are, have a wonderful day.
Sue Bayliss. Cairns, Australia.