When we were kids, there was a deaf man named Eddie that lived in our apartment complex. I don't know how old he was, but at the time he seemed to me like he was 50. Anyway, he was our friend. My sister Kim was learning sign language and she practiced on him all the time. I learned a few signs too. Mostly I would slowly slowly sign:
...and then I would spell out the word I wanted to know with slow slow finger spelling. And then Eddie would show me the sign. Poor Eddie. This would go on for hours. The only thing I ever really retained was the word "turtle", and "constipation".
One time Eddie came on a car trip with my family. Which meant there had to have been nine people in our car, and I'm sure I was getting antsy because I was squirming all over the place. My mom got fed up and screamed at me, "Why can't you be more like Eddie! Look at him! He's sitting quietly!"I'm sure Eddie was wondering why everybody in the car looked at him suddenly. And I was left to wonder why, in fact, I couldn't be more like 50-year-old Eddie?
This story will probably horrify my parents and I don't think they've heard it before:
Eddie had his couch set up diagonally in the corner of his living room. One day, Pete and Kelly let themselves into Eddie's apartment and hid behind the couch. He was deaf, you know, so he couldn't hear them come in. They even were yelling things like, "Hey Eddie! We're over here!" from behind the couch and then giggling because this was proabably the easiest hiding job they ever did. They waited...and waited.
...and then, when poor Eddie came into the living room to sit on his couch to watch TV, Pete and Kelly JUMPED OUT! and scared him!
Oh how he laughed. At least they said he was laughing.
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