|Napping at the Cool Beans Coffee Shop in Effington Wood (SLurl).|
Not long ago I was stuck in a Real Life (RL) wheelchair for several weeks. I could walk, but the doctor preferred I didn't (long story). It would strike me as I arrived at several different stores in Second Life (SL) that I'd pause before entering. After a while, it occurred to me that I was subliminally thinking "I can't get up those steps in a wheel chair ... there's no ramp." Conversely, I often think "How many prims would that be?" when I look at a nice building in RL.
Probably the biggest comparison and contrast I can make is about speaking. Just last night I was spending quality time at a nice beach with my wife and in the course of our conversation I "whispered" something to her – an emote as much as a decrease in the chat distance – and I had to stop. As you may know, I'm a mute in RL. The sounds I can make are far from whispers let alone any form of regular speech. I was struck by the dynamics. A romantic moment of holding hands in RL would leave me almost completely incommunicado as I'd have to rely on head movements or (if someone was in a position to see them) facial expressions instead of Sign Language.
Imagine if you had to remove a ping pong ball from your mouth every time you wanted to speak and had to put it back when were finished. Sign Language and hand-holding are about the same. Or mittens. Earlier in the evening my avatar was wearing mittens and I removed them to "talk" in main chat without thinking just like I did so often today when I was out with Mom for some appointments.
|From cartoonist and advocate for the deaf Matt Daigle (Web).|