Monday, November 9, 2009

I'm Not Laughing.

I was getting ready to go to bed, when this article from caught my eye. On 'Seth & Alex' they did a skit impersonating Marlee Matlin. Well, actually- impersonating her voice. While Matlin was in on the skit, I thought the whole thing was pretty distasteful and offensive. What do you think? (Transcript below)

Man-We do a lot of celebrity gags on Family Guy (You know, making fun of celebrities). One of our favorites, though, was a gag in which Marlee Matlin calls Moviefone. It went something like this:

Man (as Moviefone): Welcome to Moviefone.Please say the name of the movie you would like to see now.

Woman (as Marlee Matlin) :500 Days of Summer (pronounces “500 day of dummer”)

Man: We did not understand your selection. Please say the name of the movie you would like to see now.

Woman (as Marlee Matlin): 500 Days of Summer (same as before)
Man: You have selected: Fame.

Woman (as self): It’s getting funnier.

Man: Seriously, if the Christians are right and I’m wrong, I’m going to seriously burn in hell. It’s going to be really bad.

Woman: Even if they’re wrong, I have a feeling that here on Earth, someone’s going to set you on fire.

Man: You’re probably right… Marlee Matlin- she really is an amazing woman. She was on Dancing with the Stars recently, but what you mat not know is that she also has an album coming out next year that also features pop song covers, including this little gem…

Woman (as Marlee Matlin): I wanna hold ‘em like they do in Texas … *sings Lady’ Gaga’s “Poker Face” in “deaf accent” and out of tune.
… oh- are you still playing? *puts hand on piano* Oh, you are. 1,2,3,… I wa- a rol wi you ( continues singing).. A little gambling is fun when you’re with me.. *Matlin walks in*

Woman (as self): Oh, *bleep*!

Matlin: Shut up!

Woman: I just want to say- I’m a really, really big fan of yours. Children of a Lesser God was amazing, you won an award. And your book was so candid, and so courageous. And your role on the West Wing is incredible

Matlin: oh- shut up! You’re embarrassing yourself! How do you think it feels to be made fun of? How about I do an impersonation of you?! Let me do it! I’m Alex, and I’m arrogant and a (sorry, this is a G-rated blog!) All I do is not exercise, eat Oreos, and complain that I’m not in more movies. Here’s me walking down the street…

*Impersonates Alex (woman)- blows up cheeks and “waddles”*

Matlin:Does that feel good?

Alex: No, it doesn’t Ms. Matlin.

Matlin: Does it?!


Matlin: NO IT DOESN’T! You know, you’ve made fun of me more than twice. Twice! Did you ever think once of calling me and asking me to use my own voice?

Alex: I swear Ms. Matlin, we did, we called. But the phone just rang, and rang… *laughter*

Matlin: You want to learn some sign language?

Alex: Yeah!

Matlin: Yeah? *Bleep*!

*Please let me know if there are any errors in this transcript. I typed it up myself, right as I was getting ready for bed, so it's probably got a couple of mistakes!*

Don't you think we've already got enough people making fun of the deaf?


  1. I ain't laughing either. it's just plain evil. But I guess that is the world we're in right now. I hate this video. It should be removed. Can you add me on facebook if you have it?

  2. I have some questions. I found your blog from a comment in another blog. Your audiogram shows a 70-90db HL unaided and 45db to 70db aided. I am confused because it shows you understood 79% speech with HAs despite being outside the speech banana in most frequencies. I had 70-100db HL unaided when I was your age and was aided to 30-50db and still couldn't understand 79% speech. Maybe I am reading your audiogram wrong and you were hearing 20db with HAs?

    I also wonder how you were able to get a CI with 79% speech since FDA requires a score of below 50%. Many with CI don't even get to 79% anyway! I am also wondering how you got to 5db with CI in several frequencies, ive been told 5db was not possible with CI or even HA. Just wondering and would like to learn all this. Best regards, deafdude.

  3. Melissa- I will add you on FB as soon as I get the chance to get on ;)

    deafdude- I'm going to *try* to answer your question without writing the world's longest comment. Let's see if I succeed...

    First of all-It's not all about the numbers! Sound booth percentages can not accurately portray how well you hear. Well of course you're going to do better in a soundproof booth! I love statistics and numbers, and you seem like you do too, and as much as I'd like to say that they tell the whole story- they definitely don't!

    I've had a progressive/fluctuating hearing loss. I got my first CI after a very significant drop in hearing. What shows up on my audiogram one day (or, heck, one hour) may be 20 dB different the next.

    RE: High speech scores with bad audiogram- The 79% is on sentences. These are recorded sentences, in quiet, of a man's voice, which is the easiest voice for me to understand with my hearing loss (low frequencies). What you must remember, however, is that these were sentences. As someone with a progressive hearing loss (and I'm sure you do this too,) my brain is constantly working and filling in the blanks. This sentences test with my hearing aids required MUCH more concentration than with my CIs.

    Without the crutch of having context clues, however, my word understanding dropped to 24%. That's a more accurate depiction of what I was hearing, rather than what I was guessing.

    RE: FDA Guidelines and my speech scores:
    The test in which I made 79% sentence understanding and 24% word understanding was for my left ear in my evaluation for my second implant. This was my better ear. I don't have any copies of my pre-CI hearing tests for my first ear on my computer, but my hearing was worse on that side. I had already had GREAT results with my first implant, and me, my audiologist, and my surgeon all knew what a big difference it made. So, it wouldn't be unreasonable to assume the same thing would happen with my left side when I went bilateral. And it did- it's actually my preferred ear!

    As far as FDA guidelines go, they're exactly that- guidelines. My center (which is very well known in the CI community) does not go by sentence scores, they go by CNC word recognition scores for people like me who had hearing, lost it, and are very good CI candidates (and are willing to do the therapy). This is for the reasons already stated above (more accurate depiction of what is actually heard.)

    I am VERY happy with both of my CIs. I can not even imagine going back to hearing aids. I do still have some residual hearing, but hearing aids, in comparison to my implants, gave me so little.

    RE: Audiogram with CI
    Actually, I got down to 0dB at 8000 hZ on one of my hearing tests- ya missed that! How? A really, really great audiologist. I go for mapping often, I know what I like to hear and how I want it to sound, and she makes it happen! My hearing history also helps, because people who are implanted (NOT INCLUDING BABIES) that have had hearing and speech recognition within a short time before receving their CIs, typically do better. My audiologist does call me one of her more "hearing" patients, and not everyone does the well. However, most people do pretty nicely with their CIs.

    *I've heard some audiologists don't program below 20dB, especially for younger kids, because once you get below their they think the sound is helping more than hurting. My audiologist has never said this, and why try to make my hearing worse?*

    Hope that clears everything up!

  4. I was implanted at ten years old after wearing hearing aids for around 9 years. I did great with HA's but I got a CI for my left ear as it was exceeding 110 and plus unaided. My aided hearing in my left started at 40 and went up to 75db.
    Today I think I am doing well but I know I'm not doing as well as others since I am only hearing 30db across all frequencies. I know a lot of people are hearing below that even after 1 year. I guess it does depend on the individual?
    I have no residual hearing in my left(CI) ear but do have hearing in my right although I don't know how much there is. I can still hear with my HA but not as much as I can with the CI obviously. I can hear a lot more with my CI alone than I can with CI and HA but I prefer to wear them both together, it just added a little bit volume.
    Sometimes I do wish I can keep getting my MAP and volume adjusted but I cannot since my eye twitches if the volume is adjusted, I can't win cant I? LOL!!

  5. I found a comment here and replied:

    As for numbers, doesn't a higher number mean better hearing and speech? I got a speech discrimination test back in March and scored 4%! Every word sounded like "aaa" "ooo" "eee" as for real world speech, I can understand numbers and simple sentences my dad says without lipreading. With lipreading, I understand most of what people say, what about you?

    How did they determine what your hearing is if it fluctuates everyday? What was the best you were aided with HAs, how close to 0db did you get to? This is what im reading around and have posted about getting to 0db with HAs. Most people don't think 0db with HAs are possible but you did it with CI and you got 5db in several other frequencies. My HAs have a gain of 70db so theoratically, they should get to 0db for a HL of up to 70db.

    You have the 2nd best CI result ive seen! How low in db has your audiologist been able to get others? I read around that average CI hears at 30db. I was hearing at 35db with HAs back in 1998 with 100db HL. How much residual hearing do you still have in either ear and how much was lost with CI?

    Thanks for your time, there's much I can learn.

  6. Hi PinkLAM,

    I've been reading your blog for a couple of months now. I must say that you are both a very good and a very entertaining writer. So if that medical career doesn't work out for you(which I'm sure it will), I think writing might be a good, albeit not very well paying, backup.

    Anyway, I just want to thank you for your blog. It has really helped me cope during the past couple of months. While I am a long way from 15 (41 to be exact), I read your blog because one of my daughters (she's five) was just diagnosed with a mild unilateral hearing loss. Currently, she still has tons of usable hearing - her loss is at 35 db on the 2000 and 4000 Hz frequencies in her right ear, with the two lower speech frequencies still testing at 10 db. Her left ear tested at 10 db across all speech frequencies. So I feel fortunate that she still has so much hearing, and I hope and pray that her hearing remains stable.

    But as you know, that's pretty hard to predict even with all of the anxiety-inducing testing that accompanies a SNHL diagnosis. So your blog has shown me that no matter what happens - even if she loses most of her hearing and will require CIs, she will still be able to succeed at school, have lots of friends, and have great aspirations like becoming a doctor! So thank you for that - it means a lot to a scared mom. I would also appreciate any advice you can give me on how your mom has helped you over the years cope with your hearing loss aside from just being a great mom and advocate for you. I'm new to this, and I appreciate any advice I can get.

    I'm going to keep reading your blog - I learn a lot about hearing loss issues, and it's just wonderful to get a peak into the psyche of a 15-year-old girl who loves her life and looks forward to a great future while dealing with hearing loss, CIs, and the trials of being a teenager in general.

    All the best.


  7. Mellisa- I had a problem with twitching too, and my audiologist identified which electrodes were causing it, and just kept them at a level so that they didn't bother me. Once I went bilateral, it was no longer a problem since I had the volume on both ears softer, and together, they sounded louder so I don't have to worry about twitching.

    Deafdude- Will do an in-depth post when I get the chance.

    Rebecca- Thank you so much for the comment- I really appreciate your kind words. I'm glad you've enjoyed my writing. If you haven't seen it already, I wrote a post last night with advice :)


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