Here’s Your Sign

I had a Bill Engvall moment yesterday at the DMV where I had to stop in to have my driver’s license renewed. It happened that I was unable to renew online because I had to pass an eye test. Oh joy. I was looking forward to this kind of like a root canal.

I had already filled out the renewal form that was sent in the mail. Among the other questions was one about whether or not my hearing had changed since my last renewal. Given that I had recently been rendered deaf in one ear, I checked the “yes” box.

I strolled in the door and was happy to see there was but a single soul in line ahead of me. I quickly was at the counter where I presented my renewal form. The pleasant lady asked me a number of questions to verify my information was current. She asked me to read a line on the eye chart and I rattled off the letters. She asked me to step over in front of the camera for a fresh photo.

That is to say, we had been conversing back and forth for several minutes. This was an oral conversation. No telepathy. No hand signals. Just normal conversation. And it was in this context in which the lady took notice of my check under the hearing impairment section. She asked what the hearing impairment was, and I explained that I was now deaf in my right ear. She looks up and stares at my left ear and asks, “Can you hear at all out of the other one?”

“Here’s your sign…”

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