captioning dictionary

Spurt-Ability, Part III of III

Spurt-Ability, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I began: While coaching a novice court reporter, the professional said, “I don’t like to take tests. That’s why I went to court reporting school.”

I said softly, “Now that’s a thing of beauty.” He sincerely replied, “It’s true.” I truly replied, “You will read about this. Trust me.”

How does that happen?

Part II began: When I taught, I shared this spurt-focus with students. Many, many students took to it like a hummingbird to a red feeder. They liked it (my tutoring and coaching students like it, too). Really.

When I began to realtime and CART to a large screen, I had to focus on the spurts, the spurt-ability…

Part III: A spurt is a small marathon with yourself.

A spurt is similar to a sprinter on the track.

A spurt is similar to a pole vaulter. (more…)

28 Feb 2014

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part I of III

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
May 1, 2013

The requested tutor and empowerment coaching appointment began with a simple question.

My question to the court reporter was simply, “How are you?”

There was a loud sigh. The answer began, “I am so tired of …” I watched the clock. How long? Over five minutes. I did not peep one word as I listened. After a noticeable silence, the court reporter asked me what I was thinking.

Soflty, I said, “Wow, that was almost a five-minute literary test. Now please tell me what you really think.” She howled with laughter.

Ah, court reporters and court reporting students.

When someone asks us what we think, and the question is posed by someone (my opinion here) related to our field, we can really let the words fly, yes? Yes.

This individual and I have worked together in the past. She emailed with a question requesting numerous sessions.

Again, I found it interesting that the tenacity and goals that were set by this person while enrolled in court reporting school (her words) “who would never make it out of school fast enough” were now similar to today’s scheduled session.

“I’m not going to spend another dime to improve my skills when I have paid so much to get where I am.” (I remained silent.)

“I know people can do what I am trying to do now. If they can do it, why can’t I? I want – No, I need to earn more money. I didn’t go to court reporting school to be at the bottom of a seniority list with working court reporters after this period of time, did I?” (I remained silent.)

The sentence I truly enjoyed (professionally and personally here), “I’ll just get there and take it from there when I do get there, okay?”

I listened to this gainfully employed court reporter.

“The support on my software is about to expire. I have to pay for that, too. And the support on my new writer is about to expire. More money there! All that adds up to a lot of money and it is due very, very soon!”

The reporter summed it up, “I just am wondering exactly why I am doing this now …”

And there we had it. The dancing zebra in the room was bowing and exiting.

Now that the energy had been expelled in a healthy manner – and we were clear that we would focus together – we began an open dialog for the goals.

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted May 24, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

01 May 2013

“I Don’t Listen Well,” He Said, Part I of III

“I Don’t Listen Well,” He Said, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

When the medical specialist stood over my mother’s ICU bed and said, “I don’t listen well,” I was sure he was joking.

My mother was admitted into the hospital via ER. We thought it was a virus or food poisoning.

Soon, she was in intensive care.

Mom spent nine days, including Christmas Eve and Christmas day, in ICU.

The seven doctors I met had fill-ins for Christmas holidays.
Some physicians had fill-ins for the fill-ins.

Yes, then we shifted back to fill-ins, and then back to the original doctors, Monday, December 27th, 2010, as each read the chart.

Many physicians and professionals shared details with me about specific windows of time each had to visit their family – or two families (their words).

I believe the holiday season, and watching me sit alone, shifted people as they “blew through” (their term) to ‘round’ my very sick mother.

A few whispered to me, “There but for the grace of God go I at my parent’s bedside.”

I nodded each time, listened, honored with their sharings.

Individuals privately discussed that they were driving distances to open gifts with loved ones with whom they no longer live.

As I listened, their eyes filled with tears.
Then each regained composure and continued ‘rounding’ of patients.

The physician I am writing about is a distinguished specialist with multiple letters after his name.

We liked this man immediately when he entered our small room (a unit) with a large smile.

Squeezed into an ICU spot, Dad had just described a CD series as “fascinating” and handed it to me with a simple, “Here you go.”

The physician’s interest was piqued; he asked about the CDs.

“The Buried Book, The Loss and Rediscovery of the Great Epic of Gilgamesh” by David Damrosch (unabridged) details “Gilgamesh himself at the dawn of recorded history,” from tablets lost in Mesopotamia.

The physician knew (a lot) about Gilgamesh.
He and my father began a spirited, factual, historical discussion ripe with proper nouns and dates.

Mom beamed in her bed.

Mom, Dad and the doctor had just discussed facts surrounding her grandfather’s, Adolphus Floyd, Civil War capture and two-time imprisonment (P.O.W.) for the south.

(I was pleasantly surprised that Mom was able to formulate the accurate facts and words – as she sick as she was.)

I stood at the foot of the bed and smiled.
It was so good to see bright spirits shine.

The nurse working one of many machines at bedside stopped to tip her head and listen, her back turned to us. I watched her, too.

Court reporters notice that, yes?

I had the Gilgamesh CD collection in my right hand.

Due to the doctor’s fascination and complete unabashed enthusiasm I asked softly, “Would you like to see the epic?”

The doctor quickly tucked his equipment around his neck and reached to my hand saying, “Yes! I don’t listen well.”

I paused before I softly teased about his work and why he was in the room – working in realtime.

Sincerely, he said, “Really. I score in the top percentile of the country for skills. Yet I don’t listen well. I need to see it.”

Dad said, “She’s a court reporter. You may want to watch your words. She remembers everything and can repeat your words back to you.”

The doctor said, “No, really. It’s true.”

I shared that he might be a profile for my next article saying, “I’m always trolling. Your ‘listening’ would be great for my court reporting column.”

Dad and Mom looked the best I had seen in a while. Everyone laughed, and all was right for a moment in our world.

The next day, the physician strolled into ICU and said, “I shouldn’t have said that to you, but it’s true.”

He re-introduced and expanded the conversation.

That’s when I said, “Now you are so the topic for my next column.”

Court reporters listen. We listen precisely.

We listen while thinking about our lists, working and tasking – all in realtime.
Others I’m learning? Not as much.

Christmas and then New Year’s became my quest to “listen” to their listening. People have (seriously explained to me) territories.

One could not simply step on another’s toes. (Excuse me?)

Many medical moments required instant decisions from family members with professionals, and then another specialist would enter and have a different request, set of facts, or “they can’t do that!” (Oh, yes, they did.)

One physician said, “I want to put them all in the same room and have them duke it out together.”

Dad reminded that doctor that I remember words.

The doctor said, “Good! I’m trying to help your mother! And save her life!” with two fists in the air.

I sat at the edge of the hard, uncomfortable chair, eyes and ears open.

I worked to avoid looking stunned (the court reporter look we know well).

Individuals wearing white coats and specialists wearing polo shirts appeared surprised that I listened at Mom’s bedside, then asked a brief question following a four-minute explanation.

This is what we do. We listen. We listen. Then we listen.

Part II of III is posted April 19, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted April 26, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching

http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

07 Apr 2011

Cracking The Code To Testing and Court Reporting Certifications, Part Two

Cracking The Code To Testing and Court Reporting Certifications, Part Two
By Monette Benoit

Copyright 2008 by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Within the previous Monette’s Musings post, www.monettebenoit.com, I wrote, “Cracking the code to tests and certifications is more than a metaphor. Expanding our goals is part of our path as keeper of the record. As a tutor, coach, court reporter and CART provider, I believe one creates goals.” I shared tips to deliberately observe your conscious and unconscious thoughts and actions.

Now that you are focused on your journey, your quest, we need a formula to succeed.

Each of us has talents. What attracted you to this profession? Did (do) you have passion for your work? If your passion is tired, overworked or irritable, now is a good time to reevaluate and to set new goals.

Here I share code tips on what to deliberately eliminate.

Eliminate Negative Self-Talk Code Tip: Listen to self-talk – that dialog that runs and sprints chattering in the back of your mind. Is your chatter overwhelmed with deadlines and challenges?

Is your mantra, “I can’t do it; I’ll never be fast enough; How do I memorize every word in the English language?” As you work, practice and study, are you thinking about laundry, errands and fuel prices?

Five minutes is not a long time until you are writing dictation and self-talk chatters, “When is that person going to stop (or shut up)?” Banish this negative chatter from your path. Detach, observe and deliberately listen to yourself. Then fix it (the issue).

Complaints Code Tip: Eliminate (reduce) complaining. Much of our self-talk may be perceived as complaining. Listen to yourself. Court reporters and students I work with share, “I do that! Thanks for pointing that out. Now I’ll focus and eliminate that – self-talk.”

Avoid Trying-To-Get-It Code Tip: Don’t try, do. Years ago I met a wise woman who listened to a comment I shared. She said, “You cannot try; you can only do.” That sounded coded to me.

My memory-moment occurred when she stated, “You cannot try to sit in a chair. You either do or don’t.” She then attempted a half-sit, froze, looked at me saying, “See? You cannot try to sit.”

Part of her work was preparing people to walk on hot coals. (You know who you are. I’m surprised how many court reporters – and teachers – have done this. Some of you walked on coals with your mother. You proudly shared this with me.)

No, I don’t think hot coals are necessary for passing any certification test.

The woman’s comment imprinted a marked difference in what I took from a passing comment. As this (issue) relates to you, don’t try to get that take, don’t try to get every word or try to memorize every definition.

Don’t try to make time to study, to practice. You cannot try. Your deliberate focus is to eliminate trying and to only do.

What Am I Doing? Code Tip: Eliminate “What do I do?” moments when you study and practice. Establish a goal for that day and for that hour. A set structure of tasks will assist you to accomplish more each time you prepare. And expect a few surprises as your deliberate focus expands. Once you expect, you (re)solve.

Why Am I Doing This? Code Tip: Eliminate “Why am I doing this?” (a.k.a. “Why waste my time?”) This question is huge in our profession.

Tenacious personalities enabling individuals to excel through court reporting school (with daily pass rates of 95% or higher) and to excel (a.k.a. survive) daily technical work may, on occasion, seem overwhelming. Sometimes it is. Prep first. Don’t question why. Just do.

Repeated Mistakes Code Tip: Eliminate (reduce) mistakes. Seek to find your patterns, your mistakes. Then meticulously and deliberately go get ‘em. Eliminate one error at a time, then another error. Each error is only one point, right?

Unstructured Hours of Practicing Code Tip: Eliminate long periods of time without breaks, readbacks, or change of material. One cannot practice 12 hours a day, 7 days a week and find refreshing progress.

A court reporting student I’m tutoring said this is what she was told she needed to do to pass school and certification tests. I sighed and then systematically broke that advice into multiple pieces.

Many experienced reporters and captioners believe that long hours of work and practice require breaks to maintain strong muscles and a sharp mind. Many people who have back, arm, and wrist problems wish they knew then what they know now. They do.

Often we choose to live and work with our computers, steno machine and few breaks to fundamentally rest. Much (more) can be accomplished with structured practice, study, and rest.

Distractions: Eliminate e-mails, IMs (instant messaging), and phones when you set aside precious time for yourself. Don’t try. Just do.

Inefficiency Code Tip: Eliminate practicing at speeds over your speed without a review and without a connection to your fingers and your brain as to how a word is defined.

Without a connection, this (you) creates repetitive errors. Focus on each stroke, word, each definition. Work to find the reason(s) why you are being challenged.

What Is Not Working? Code Tip: Eliminate what you know is not working. If you work full-time, attend school, and practice when you are hungry or tired, your progress is affected. When I shared this tip with an experienced official court reporter I am tutoring, she howled with laughter, “Oh, you bet, that’s me!”

Stress, Anxiety Elimination Code Tip: I know, again, this tip is easier said than done. But this is your journey, your quest.

As I’m writing, it’s late. My Maine Coon (18-pound rescued cat) is asleep, crashed with his head down inside my sneaker. The house is dark and quiet; I worked a full day. A (rescued, abused) purring cat is on my knee while soothing music is playing. I have a deadline with my editor. To squeeze more into my day (and night) this is how I meet a goal I created to become more productive. What works for you? Do that.

Use your time wisely, fix mistakes, rest, learn what works for you, and then combine your formula to succeed.

What works for you one day or one week, will need alterations. Change is good when you have a plan, are prepared, rested, and deliberately focused in your current moment.

When you focus your path and are aware of insights with what works for you and what does not, your progression is greater. Success is more noticeable as you deliberately connect to focused intentions, conscious actions and your positive chatter.

Your goal is to perform at your peak and to focus on your success.

With awareness, you achieve greater results with less stress, which result in greater success. Your internal compass, your code, will guide you. It will.

Within my previous post I shared nutrition code tips; body, toes, fingertips code tips; radar code tips; inspiration code tips; common sense code tips; oxygen code tips; nest code tips; toxic decoding code tips; realtime focus code tips; entrance code tips; and people red-alert code tips.

Musicians play all the chords. Athletes work all the muscles for one sport.

You are the master of your path. Deliberately reduce and eliminate distractions. Invest in yourself.

The court reporters, broadcast captioners and CART providers I work with share an important lesson from my tutoring and coaching is: “Clearly define your boundaries.” Check your boundaries, observe your talents, align your goals.

This power-full quest to your code and passing tests can be (more) effort-less. Don’t try, do.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘eR Done in Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are online — from students, instructors, program directors, CART Captioners, novice and senior court reporters, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound, covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information, the Purple Books from CRRbooks.com are time-tested and proven in the classroom with educators and with independent study.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabulary, medical, technology and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The Workbook contains **2,002 practice test questions; the Companion Study Guide cross-references every word in the workbook’s 2,002 multiple-choice text practice questions.

The “Full Test Prep Set” and “Trio Test Prep” – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. * Bring it today!

10 Oct 2008

Cracking The Code To Testing And Passing Court Reporting Certifications


Cracking The Code To Testing And Passing Court Reporting Certifications, Part One

By Monette Benoit

Copyright 2008 by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Cracking the code to tests and certifications is more than a metaphor.

Expanding our vision and our goals are part of our path as court reporters, the keeper of the record, historical conservator, and protector of spoken words.

If you are focused on changing your life, you are having internal conversations. As an experienced court reporter, tutor, coach and CART provider, I truly believe one can create and transform his or her goals.

For 20 years, I have been honored to assist students (to include home-study individuals), broadcast captioners and court reporters to earn their national, NCRA, and state certification tests.

My students have been my greatest teachers, my leaders. Your success is my goal.

I have authored a textbook, workbooks and a companion study guide to assist individuals to pass their NCRA and state court reporting certification exams the first time they register. We also assist students, captioners and court reporters to build and to expand their realtime and captioning dictionary with ‘CATapult Your Dictionary CDs’.

Thousands of students and court reporters have worked with CRR Books and CDs (Court Reporter Reference Books And CDs, www.CRRbooks.com).

CRR Books And CDs has organized focused information on how to pass a NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, RPR, RMR, RDR, written knowledge examination – known as the ‘WKT’ since 1990.

States also have CSR, CCR certification examinations for court reporters. CRR Books And CDs has successfully assisted individuals there, too.

So you want to pass a test? My desire is to help you to shift your awareness.

If you want to pass a test in a court reporting program or a national certification test, ‘wanting’ is not enough. You need to prep with deliberate, focused intentions, conscious actions.

Recently, I received requests on how to prep from applicant test-takers for NCRA, California, Texas, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, New York, Florida, New Mexico, Colorado, Georgia, Maryland, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona state examinations.

I desire to gift you with tips, information to focus your internal compass.

Thousands of students and reporters have accomplished huge goals – one step at a time, one step, one step – sometimes only in one tiny step – then there’s a wobble.

Now is the time to prepare your stimulus plan.

Now is the time to hone your conscious and unconscious thoughts and actions to crack the code to pass your test.

I firmly believe one-step-at-a-time awareness is where you find greatest progress. Even a step back is a step. This awareness is essential to your code, your internal compass.

Okay. So you registered to take a NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, or a state court reporting certification test? Or maybe not yet, but soon?

Are you enrolled in a court reporting school or home study program?

You now have an opportunity to stretch your boundaries. Stretching is good. Be gentle and remain focused on this goal, which is easier said than done – I know.

Many students and working court reporters can see and taste this lap while pedaling with an already busy schedule.

Below are tips to successfully crack your code — tips I coach to help many, many in your (busy) shoes. Part II will be added to assist you.

Nutrition Code Tips: Consciously focus on your blood sugar with smart eating, snacking. Vitamins are essential to preparing physical and mental compass charting of your code.

Carbohydrates create long-term energy while pasta and rice ensure your body functions at peak performance.

Proteins create short-term energy and if (when) you balance carbohydrates and proteins, you’re in athletic training. Hydrate ‘you’ (yourself) with water, perhaps green tea, Gatorade-type drinks. Sodas taste good, but many cause dehydration with additives and sugar. Stress contributes to depleting fluids. Avoid dehydrating your body; instead drink water and other helpful fluids.

Body, Toes, Fingertips Code Tips: Wear comfortable clothes, footwear. This awareness tip should be incorporated into your daily routine to prep for a court reporting (or any) test.

If you are taking a machine portion of any test, your fingertips (nails) must function at peak performance. Many students and reporters have manicures. I softly share that now is not the time to test a new length or style. What works best for you? Use that.

Radar Code Tips: As you move closer to your scheduled test, I want you to specifically notice your energy-awareness.

Code-cracking includes becoming aware that you may be more sensitive at work and school with family and yourself. Some call this “cranky,” but I prefer “sensitive.” This is normal. Once you are aware this energy is part of your preparation, you can acknowledge the awareness, and then let these test prep code tips work for you. I know you can learn a lot about yourself as you hone and fine-tune your radar, your sensitivity meter.

Inspiration Code Tips: Take time for you. Have you listened to a favorite CD? Is there a movie where you find inspiration? Have you laughed recently? When we focus on a long-term goal, I firmly believe it is the little moments (note it’s plural) in our world wherein we most effectively gain momentum toward our goal.

Common Sense Code Tips: Pack equipment – and you – before the test. Avoid gassing the car en route. Make sure there is no construction near the site. I coach that you should be packed by mid-afternoon the day before. This ensures reducing, “Dang, where did I put …?”

Oxygen Code Tips:
Stretch and breathe. When stressed, we sit with our shoulders hunched up and breathe shallowly. (Every time I proofed this sentence I noticed I was not breathing evenly.)

Consciously focus on a steady rhythm of evenly breathing in and breathing out to maximize your body’s ability to work for you.

Focus on regulating your breath. If your voice is higher than normal, you are shallow breathing. Become aware of your breath. Your body will respond with a good-sized release of stressed energy. Tip: The more oxygen your brain receives, the better you function.

Nest Code Tips: Ah, sleep. Focus on your nesting routine. The final two nights before the test, I suggest taking a warm bath or shower, curling up with a human, pet, or book, and being quiet. In your quiet moments and quiet rituals, you will find great focus, comfort. This is how you recharge.

Toxic Decoding – Code Tips: Avoid high maintenance people – really. We all know people who have toxic moments. If someone has multiple toxic moments, focus on removing your energy (you). You want to be comforted and remain focused. When there are multiple pulls (drains) for your energy, your internal compass will recognize the problem. It does. Please remember you earned the right to this peaceful, focused prep toward your goal.

Realtime Focus Code Tips: The morning of your test, consciously monitor fluids. Caffeine takes you up in an energy burst; then drops you when the burst has bust.

I coach that each person should pack red grapes and a packet of non-salted pretzels and nuts. There is an amazing abundance of energy in red grapes and snacks. (The last time I went to the movies my mother whispered, “Want some?” I tilted my head, looked to her hand in my ribs. She held a small bag of red grapes and two paper towels. Mom, “They are so good, and quiet, too.” I softly groaned and looked to where my dad sat. He shrugged, slowly shaking his head as my mother handed me red grapes in a paper towel. Mom added, “And I washed them.”) Red grapes are portable and good for you – at the movies or within a test site. Yes, I know food is not allowed. But you can snack at appropriate times. You can.

Entrance Code Tips: When you enter your testing site, consciously arrive with your shoulders back and chin up. If this is a return walk, focus on the now. If this is your virgin stroll, a click of your fingers or a sacred moment in prayer may serve you to focus. Now is where you need to be.

People Red-Alert Code Tips: Avoid huddled groups and agitated chatting. Specifically avoid anyone who asks: “What does this mean?” “How do you write…?” “How many times did it take you to …?” Now is your time. You need to consciously remain focused on your code, your test prep awareness.

Understanding Code Awareness: When you consciously perform at your peak and focus on your success, with step-by-step awareness, you can achieve greater results with less effort – with less stress, resulting in greater success. You will. Your internal compass will guide you. It will.

This month I shared tips to add for deliberate, conscious thoughts and actions. Next month, I share tips on what to eliminate with part two of Cracking The Code To Testing and Court Reporting Certifications.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘eR Done in Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are online — from students, instructors, program directors, CART Captioners, novice and senior court reporters, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound, covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information, the Purple Books from CRRbooks.com are time-tested and proven in the classroom with educators and with independent study.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabulary, medical, technology and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The Workbook contains **2,002 practice test questions; the Companion Study Guide cross-references every word in the workbook’s 2,002 multiple-choice text practice questions.

The “Full Test Prep Set” and “Trio Test Prep” – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. * Bring it today!

23 Sep 2008

Fingers, Ears, and Heart Wide Open

Fingers, Ears, and Heart Wide Open

By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Court reporters and court reporting instructors are fascinating!

Court reporting students have wonderful stories to share with detailed triumphs and challenges each has overcome. And I believe this is what makes this profession so wonderful.

During the NCRA (National Court Reporters Association) Teachers’ Workshop, I was enjoying dinner in a fine restaurant. My companions shared thoughts and ideas. While Cecilee Wilson spoke, Gayl Hardeman, Laura Taylor and I listened intently.

As we dined and I listened to Cecilee, I knew court reporting students and working court reporters, CART providers and broadcast captioners would want to know this true story.

Each day as I tutor experienced court reporters and court reporting students, I affirm that we are each talented in our unique way. Cecilee Wilson expanded my world and now here I share with you.

Cecilee Wilson, RMR, CRR, is a captioner and CART provider. She is inspirational. Cecilee finished school in Bountiful, Utah, and married her high school sweetheart. Her husband told her about co-workers attending reporting school. They were going to work a little and retire early because of the money.

“Then he said, ‘Bet you can’t do that,’” recalls Cecilee.

Cecilee enrolled. “I didn’t do well; others were better. I’d rather go to the dentist and get teeth drilled without Novocain than go to (court reporting) class.”

She and her husband joined the Air Force. They were stationed in New Jersey. She enrolled in Harris School of Business. Cecilee discharged after her daughter’s birth. They were transferred to England, then Salt Lake. She transferred to Abilene and enrolled in the Stenograph Institute of Texas.

She worked hard, passing a test each week until December, took time off to have her third baby girl, returned in January and passed the RPR in May 1977. Cecilee moved back to Salt Lake City and continued reporting.

She split with her husband after 14 years and five children, including a four-month-old son. On her baby’s six-month birthday, Cecilee’s neighbor asked if she wanted a ride on his Harley.

A car pulled out. “I heard the boom and blacked out.” She remembers saying, “Well, I’m not dead, that’s good.”

She gave herself a physical. “I needed a Band-Aid on my hand. If my feet would get the feeling back, I’d go to work tomorrow.” It was dark. She couldn’t see the bones sticking out of her hand and didn’t know both feet were broken.

Her right hand was pinned and casts were put on both legs. The pins were removed and “my divorce was final the same week. A friend offered to line me up with some guy.”

Cecilee was readmitted with an infection in her arm. “MY friend wanted me to meet him. My blind date consisted of her and her husband bringing him to the hospital. He joked I was a cheap date. We got married in three months.”

Within two years, they had a baby. “Eight kids: five mine, two his and one ours,” she says.

She was out of work nine months with three surgeries and physical therapy. Cecilee recovered “almost all of my hand. I was a reporter again.”

She wanted to caption in 1989 but hit dead ends.

“When my mother died in ’92, I used my inheritance for everything—captioning software, encoder,” she explains.

“I called a station and told them I’d caption pro bono the governor’s state of the state address. The station decided to caption a script, but kept my card. In March, Easter Seals was looking to caption their telethon. The station gave them my card. I captioned 14 hours in two days. Soon I captioned the University of Utah’s football games, which led to Utah Jazz and University of Utah basketball. And I was still working in court.”

During her second Jazz season, the Utah Council for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing phoned.

“They had seen my blurb at the end of games.”

She met with the council. They took her to meet the TV station general managers. Nobody was interested then. Later she was contacted by a general manager who wanted to caption—the next week.

“I was walking out the door for a trip to Hawaii.” She negotiated from her hotel and started the next week. Six months later she took on another station.

She worked all day in court, wrote the 5:30 news from her office, drove home and wrote the 9 and 10 p.m. news or a three-hour game. She finished at 11:45 p.m. one night with a game in overtime and trial the next morning.

“Clearly this was killing me,” says Cecilee. “I had to quit court; the rest is history.”

Cecilee now has six grandchildren, three girls, three boys.

She spends her free time knitting, crocheting, spinning, and quilting.

They raise sheep. “As lawn mowers for pasture; in the spring we shear them. I spin the wool, as time allows. We put some in the freezer. When my kids want to know what the name is of the new lamb, we say, ‘Dinner’. It keeps the in-laws from visiting, especially when they know the Thanksgiving turkey is grown in our yard.”

Her husband, Leroy, has a degree in ceramic art and currently is earning a degree in education. He wants to teach. “He does all the cooking,” she says. “Sometimes he brings me food while I’m captioning.” During a Salt Lake City tornado, she was on-air four hours with no commercials. He brought sodas with a straw and held them for her.

One year, she “thought it would be cool to make an NCRA centennial quilt and donate it to the NCRF auction.” NCRF sent past logos.

“That became the main design. I have quilt frames behind my chair. During commercials, I have a hard time doing nothing for two minutes. I turn around, quilt, drop the needle and caption again.”

As she recounted these details, my Pittsburgh dining companions and I listened. You could’ve heard a pin drop at our table. I slowly sipped my glass of wine, wide-eyed as she spoke.

I asked Cecilee what motivates her.

“The only thing remarkable about me is that I am very unremarkable. People have supported and helped me. I am continually thankful.”

What keeps her smiling?

“I think my life is a reflection of love of God and Jesus Christ—God for allowing me trials and giving me strength to overcome them; Jesus Christ for giving me His example and being my savior. That’s really the truth.”

I’ll always remember her gracious big smile and gentle laugh.

Cecilee Wilson is way beyond any comfort zone. Ears, fingers, heart and wise soul, wide open, sharing truly and purely.

Monette Benoit may be reached at: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

11 Jul 2008

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part V of VII

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part V of VII

By Monette Benoit
All Rights Reserved.

Every day, like you, I receive e-mails. People contact me each day as a court reporter, CART provider, instructor, tutor, and author of NCRA, written knowledge test, “WKT” test prep material. Like you, I’m working to ensure we have an accurate record and to give back. My goal is to serve others.

Sometimes I receive an e-mail stinger. I may “see” frustration; I may address that.

But there are many e-mails where I giggle. I understand we’re working hard, probably too hard.

Today’s goal: If this article gifts you with new information, a smile, a giggle, ending with my “memory-moment,” I’ll have done my job — today — for tomorrow.

You can embrace this technology, become embraced by a new world; one that expands each day, as we share our skills, listening to those who teach us – our consumers.

Please refer to my NCRA JCR online articles within the CART Special Interest Area (members only, per NCRA) for previous questions and answers.

To further assist you, part I, II, III, IV and V and many articles that I’ve written about my experiences with CART and deaf/Deaf and HOH (hard of hearing) topics are online at http://www.catapultdix.com/ and Monette’s Musings, http://www.monettebenoit.com/

30. “What is oral deaf? Does that mean they talk clearly, but can’t hear?”

The person is deaf and does not sign. A person chooses not to use sign language. If you’re new to CART, it’s not “aural” deaf. While the audience giggles, reporters blush if they were not aware of the phrase beforehand.

31. “Why would they choose not to sign?”

A person with hearing loss may choose to read lips. The age at which hearing loss begins is an important factor in the choice. Some oral deaf may become deaf early in life. A parent helps with the decision, perhaps with a teacher, doctor or audiologist. Most oral deaf that I know made the decision with their mother.

I know a very successful (high profile) businessman who refuses to learn sign or read lips, asking others “to write it down.” (He hands me his paper and pencil each time.)

I asked why he didn’t read lips or sign. He answered, “I don’t want to.”

I threw my head back and laughed.

Others were horrified that I had even asked this question. But I had an opportunity to engage in a wonderful, honest conversation; I learned a lot from the gentleman. And the moment that was missed by almost everyone who was standing there when I initially asked my question was he thanked me for asking. After he shared, he leaned over, shook my hand and thanked me. I tapped his shoulder and gently nodded. I get it.

Many oral deaf make the decision early in their deafness to try to get along without sign.

The Deaf worlds are very different from oral deaf: this culture of individuality and its social and professional settings often help to define the decision. Yet the majority of my oral-deaf friends do not know any sign. Since I can tease them, as they tease me, I may sign, as we chat, “turning voice-box off.” (Voice-box is an important term to know and to have in your vocabulary.)

Again, one’s knowledge and acceptance within deaf culture will enhance and/or halt this truth in communication.

32. “I’m interested in CART. How can I learn?”

Seminars are held at state and national conventions. CARTWheel was organized by Gayl Hardeman to act as a guidepost for families and people with hearing challenges. The site (www.CARTWheel.cc) has grown with a group of leaders, pioneers and professionals who share information among professional members, apprentice members, and within legal, educational, religious and business arenas. NCRA has a CART Special Interest Area at cart.NCRAonline.org.

Read articles, prep, read, and get to know thee consumer.

You will be thanked and will learn buckets of information at the feet of the masters. This community has been wonderful embracing me – the Deaf, deaf, oral deaf, hard of hearing. Truly. Since 1993, from the trenches, I am thanked over and over for simply bearing witness and for serving to their needs, to their requests. I do not work to define what ‘they’ need without consulting with ‘they’ — as it should be.

33. “I have a job just waiting for me to CART. If I can learn how much to charge, the job’s there, so I need you to tell me how much to charge, so I can provide this service.” Another question: “I’m looking to CART/ caption on the side. I need national rates. Break it down by one-on-one or group rates – that’d be good to know, too.”

Each reporter needs to know the community. One CART provider often writes longer periods of time than team sign interpreters, and we may share an ASCII disk, verbatim translation of the job request.

Amounts vary for our services, but I can pick up the phone, learning rates in any region. So should you, after learning the culture(s) in your area.

34. “Help! You need to phone me at (long distance) tomorrow around 9 or 10. I need advice to handle clients and lots of other stuff. I’ve attended many of your sessions on CART when you spoke at the national convention. My e-mail doesn’t work, please call!”

Hmmm. I replied, via e-mail that “doesn’t work,” but was sent via e-mail: I don’t know your time zone, state, full name, qualifications or enough specifics to be helpful.

35. “I’m interested in starting a CART business. Do you own one? I need to pick someone’s brain!” Please see previous 34 questions and answers.

36. “Can you provide me with all your fees, including all marketing plans?”

Gee, I don’t think so.

I end here, in serious times, sharing a Deaf joke. “It’s funny when you get a prank call through TTY (telephone for the Deaf) and try to figure out who the caller is by speed of typing, choice of words and English language.”

Those that understand Deaf culture just smiled. If I need to explain this, it’s not funny.

Come, join us; you’ll smile, promise. My “filled with wonder” memory was gifted from a Big-D friend.

I cherish the honesty, so pure: “Monette, you see why friendship means so much? You know how people say earthly treasures don’t matter cause you can’t have them in heaven? Well, I will get to also have them in heaven.”

“I want to talk with Jesus. I think that will be one cool conversation. Hey, I will get to talk to Him verbally, and He can talk to me normal there, ’cause I will get to hear there. Yup, that will definitely be such a cool thing.”

Thanks for permitting me to share moments that pause my world to sparkle with wonder at what tomorrow may bring.

And I humbly ask each of you: Do you have wonder and excitement in your work?

CART opens new doors and opportunities each day. Truly.

And yes, you have my permission to share my articles. One set of ears, one set of hands at a time. And I still swear learning theory was the hardest thing I ever did. Placing the steno machine on the tiny tripod comes in a close second.

About the Author:

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

08 Apr 2008

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part IV of VII

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part IV of VII
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Comments to my CART FAQ articles continue to percolate. So shall my responses.

The following are questions I work to address pro bono as we move forward within our careers. To further assist you, Part I, II and III and many articles that I’ve written about my experiences with CART and deaf topics are online at http://www.catapultdix.com/ and Monette’s Musings, http://www.monettebenoit.com/

When I attended the national NCRA convention in New Orleans to learn, to see old buddies, to greet new friends, I listened to many individuals who stated they wanted and needed to share with me as an experienced court reporter, tutor and CART provider.

Many people are motivated, energized and ready to move forward. Some are angry and frustrated. I’m convinced that where you are depends on how you stay up with technology.

Those “frustrated” (their words) admitted they do not have the skills, knowledge or attitude to move forward. Those excited for the future created time to become familiarized with where they want to go. I share questions I received. Numbers 25-28, sadly, I’ve heard many times.

25. “Can I practice on college students? I need to learn how to provide CART.”

I was asked this so often, I picked up the mic during a NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, panel seminar, and from the panel seat in front of the room, I replied, “Hell, no,” and dropped the mic on the table. It bounced.

We need to be very careful where we practice. Practicing “on” anyone who is relying upon our professional skills for an education, grade, degree, job or minutes is inappropriate.

We can practice in our home or the back of a room (perhaps at a public meeting or in a church), with the screen down. When people approach to view and/or purchase a transcript, the practicing reporter/student should be very careful.

This is their first impression of you – one long remembered.

Usually, movers and shakers attend meetings to advance their rights. It would be unwise to share work you believe to be inferior to the minutes of any meeting. (Even if they say it’s okay to have untranslates, trust me, they remember.)

Just as theory students wouldn’t think about practicing (sharing a screen or record) in court, CART providers must work toward their goal. Time invested into the goal benefits everyone – you, most of all.

26. “Can I practice in church?”

Again, practice depends on where you are. If you’re practicing within a church, screen down, reach for heaven and the stars. If you’re practicing and learning on a large screen or television, people relying on your skills may not receive “the Word of God.”

I learned in the corner, screen down. After several months, I moved forward with my practice. Skills depend on practice.

Most church terms are not within a court reporter’s dictionary. I was humbled many a time. I excelled in learning how to fingerspell on the fly (in realtime), and I added thousands of words into my dictionary before I went up on the screen.

I built my skills. This assisted everyone dependent upon my large screen during a mass dedicated to Catholic Deaf to “hear” God’s Word.

I received so many requests on this topic from working captioners, we developed a specific tool to assist religious writers. Volume E, Universal Religions Interactive CD has 40,000 terms for the ‘CATapult Your Dictionary’ CD series to assist people preparing for this path. (This CD and others are listed at http://www.catapultdix.com/.)

27. “I’m too busy to read the JCR. I’m only here for CE points. How do I learn CART, then CART remotely to the Net? I may have clients requesting this service soon.”

Everyone has to eat lunch. Everyone sits at traffic lights, in bank parking lots. Time is there. There are many opportunities to learn how to do CART. State and national conventions have CART seminars. To not attend seminars that teach how to provide this service is truly sad in my opinion.

I wouldn’t even consider CARTing to the Internet without extra hands, phone lines, equipment and technical expertise. Yes, there are some who CART remotely without extra hands, but each will share they’ve had problems. Lines go down; equipment problems occur; technical issues arise.

I wouldn’t even consider doing a remote job without technical assistance. Writing to the Internet is a job for advanced CART providers. You will have problems working jobs when you’re not seated next to your consumer/audience. Every captioner has an engineer, so should CART providers. For those who have prepared and have learned the CART remote ropes, the sky’s the limit!

28. “How much does it pay?” Please see my previous answers.

29. “I’m a CART provider and was contacted by someone who may Baker Act (commit) a deaf person. The reporters with the contract do not do CART. I’m concerned about the deaf person, their rights. Someone advised: ‘God takes care of people.’ Should I let them work this out?”

I came to a complete halt in my work and immediately phoned this reporter, saying softly, “God does not want the deaf person to get a poor job.” Then I spoke honestly and thanked this professional for reaching out to me prior to accepting this job.

Oh, my gosh! We’re guardians of the record; professionals that people look to for accuracy.

We must know when to reach out and request guidance and additional help. If someone is going to provide CART for a deaf person in any setting, that reporter must be qualified.

Are they Deaf, deaf, oral, hard-of-hearing or early deafened?

To provide realtime for any deaf or hard-of-hearing person, we must determine if the person needs a sign interpreter and/or CART provider. If the person’s first language is sign language, then it’s usually the interpreter. If the person is asked, we need to honor their choice.

Mike O’Donnell is “a deaf professional involved in the field of communication accessibility services over 13 years.” He’s a gifted man, owning Com Access, Bethesda, MD. His logo: Where Communication Barrier Has No Place.

Mike attends our NCRA conventions, works with CART providers and uses sign interpreters to assist him. He reached out to us. We need to embrace his knowledge and hear about the personal experiences he and others have had. They live with moments we can only read and write about.

We sat next to each other at the New Orleans presidential banquet. During dinner, when I signed, “My brother died one year ago tonight,” Mike took my hands, bowed his head and signed (said) a prayer to God for my brother. My world stood still — again — and I felt blessed for being embraced in this community and the trenches.

Mike has earned my respect for his commitment to all of us working together. May this be so, always.

I wish you a blessed path – in realtime – as you read this. Let’s reach out and share in realtime one set of ears, one set of hands at a time.

And yes, you have my permission to share my articles. My online articles are preserved under the CART Special Interest Group, http://cart.ncraonline.org/, http://www.catapultdix.com/ and http://www.monettebenoit.com/

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

06 Apr 2008

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part I of VII

CART FAQ: Falling On Deaf Ears, Part I of VII
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

As a CART provider, teacher, tutor, coach, and author, I receive many e-mails that are enlightening, sincere and detailed. Many contain paragraphs with question after question.
Many contain the same questions week after week.

I respond as best as I can, then another arrives: “How do I …?” “Where can I learn quickly …?” Many request specific information with statistics to be included, and “Can I have it before the close of business today? Do you have any forms from your business that we can use. You can e-mail or fax them to us. We really need it.”

Today I received: “How do I learn to CART and write numbers without the number bar?” “Can I attend a CART seminar if I’m not real-timing?” “If I move, how do I continue to earn money when only 50 percent of the transcripts will be ordered. I’ll earn less, but have more free time. I do real-time and have clean notes, so I’m considering CART or closed captioning if I really can’t earn enough to live on.”

Then I received this: “Regarding CART, it’s like a beehive. Everyone is protective of their own territory. Someone is going to come in with a can of Raid and kill them all off if you don’t band together, get organized.” I sent that person a thank-you note for giving me the big laugh for the day.

The continuing “how do I do it quickly” reminds me of the Dalai Lama.

One day a person asked, “How do I achieve enlightenment quickly?” The Dalai Lama responded silently. He cried.

So I’ve put together a FAQ list. Parts II-VII will follow and is posted on http://www.catapultdix.com/ and Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

As technology expands, we need to be more fluid with our skills. Here’s a sampling in the order in which I usually receive requests for information.

1. “I’m not happy with the work, long hours and deadlines.” Also: “I don’t want to work with attorneys anymore. What do you suggest?”

There are many opportunities for reporters. If someone wants to work in legal settings, or not, there now are many choices; this creates options.

2. “How do I get started?”

I strongly suggest joining your national and state organizations. They’re founts of information. State and national representatives continually attend seminars geared to helping and leading others. Many seminars are created from their seminars. You need to read your state and national magazines. Each NCRA Journal is varied and informative on all topics. (No, they didn’t ask me to say this. I’m in the trenches, like almost every other author.)

3. “Where do I get started?”

If you receive state and national magazines, they often list seminars, publications, Web sites and other information. Only you know where your skills truly are. When you read the entire magazine, become familiar with terms, products, names, presenters, speakers or associations, you will be a better judge of where your “where” is.

4. “How do I learn the most in the quickest time?”

Improving skills is a lifelong process. Preparation and education are key. Those who learn the quickest usually were the best prepared; they didn’t do it overnight.

5. “What can I do that will save me money now so I can learn?”

Also: “I know I’ll lose speed if I change my writing style. How do I prevent that?”

The answer lies in where each person is when he or she asks. Incremental changes can be made. Massive changes might be avoided. But if you want to real-time, you need to tweak your writing. I suggest that people not look at this as losing money, but as a shift to a bigger arena of income that becomes available – one that may not be there now if they are unhappy with their current writing skills.

6. “How do I get work? How do I meet clients?”

Work is anyplace where the English language is spoken and/or muttered (I tease). In many locations, “clients” are called “consumers.” After prepping, to get work you need to find someone who knows consumers, or you need to meet them to create your work. You need to become familiar with their culture, sensitivities and needs.

7. “How do I learn about clients, cultures, sensitivities?”

State and national associations are a wonderful starting ground. Most have their own Web sites. The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, AGB; the Registry of Interpreters (sign interpreters), RID; Self-Help for Hard of Hearing People, SHHH – renamed to Hearing Loss Association of America; the National Association of the Deaf, NAD – each association is different. Look them up.

Many national associations have state and local chapters. The key is to be prepared with your knowledge, then arrive with your equipment. Many groups now are very familiar with CART. They have an understanding of the needs in their backyard and who might need services. The Yellow Pages, United Way, sign interpreters, audiologists, school districts, universities – the list is endless – have information where services might be needed.

Unfortunately, most people ask some of these questions (or worse, they don’t) believing that if they can rea-ltime in depositions or court, they can “do this,” and they head out into the CART field.

This is a different ballgame. It is no different than real-timing on someone else’s software with his or her personal dictionary. The key to being successful when learning about CART is to do your homework before you go out. “Something is better than nothing” is not good for you or the consumer. You need to know this.

And when that “something is better than nothing” is discussed with me by someone seeking CART services, I decline the work. I choose not to work with companies that want the cheapest writer.

Many companies and educational institutions will ask, “Can’t you just find someone who needs an internship? This helps them to learn and helps us to save money.” I’m still amazed when that question is asked by people requesting our services (they often do not want to be sued). They do not want to compensate qualified reporters for their training, equipment and technical skills. The consumer deserves qualified services. His or her job and/or education may rely upon what that person receives – or does not receive – on the computer screen.

Knowing where the boundaries are in this field with your skills and the needs of the consumers is vital before you step out. Some may want to pay you a lower fee to “learn”; be careful.

Often qualified CART providers must go in after the fact to pick up where the person who was not prepared left off. That’s not pretty no matter where or how that happens.

8. “Should I learn sign language?”

I believe that each person who works with deaf individuals should know some signs. Is English their first language? Many, not all, deaf people communicate by signs. The more you know, the more flexible you are. If a person is deaf or hard-of-hearing, he or she may not sign. This is the key to the culture and sensitivity. From where I stand now, I simply ask, “What do you prefer?”

9. “How do I meet sign interpreters?”

Go where they go. Interpreters are experiencing national shortages. I went to places where they were. I waited for many to come to me. I was later told that it meant I really wanted to learn. I listed the information in the order in which I receive the requests. This is the beginning of a discussion, the first in a series with seven parts.
The complete series is posted http://www.catapultdix.com/ and www.monettebenoit.com

Falling on Deaf Ears … the sad part, to me, about writing this article?

Many people who request that these questions ‘be’ answered quickly, so they can learn quickly, may not be members of our national and their state association. Remote CART is expanding our possibilities. Now we have to expand our skills. The market has never been so varied, so wide.

And I still swear “learning theory” was the hardest thing I ever did.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘eR Done in Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are online — from students, instructors, program directors, CART Captioners, novice and senior court reporters, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound, covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information, the Purple Books from CRRbooks.com are time-tested and proven in the classroom with educators and with independent study.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabulary, medical, technology and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The Workbook contains **2,002 practice test questions; the Companion Study Guide cross-references every word in the workbook’s 2,002 multiple-choice text practice questions.

The “Full Test Prep Set” and “Trio Test Prep” – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. * Bring it today!

02 Apr 2008

Then Al Weinstein Asked, “Did I Help You?” Chief Reporter, United Nations

Then Al Weinstein Asked, “Did I Help You?” Chief Reporter, United Nations
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Al wanted this story. Al asked for this story. My intent was to surprise Al Weinstein in this JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, July 1999 special collector’s edition. When Al died, I felt it. No one told me. I knew. I bowed my head and prayed.

In prayer, I apologized for the delay with my promise to share what Al had requested. I had been waiting for the special edition of NCRA’s JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, the special anniversary edition. I knew Al would want his story preserved in the historical publication.

Sadly, I must share: I waited too long. As I’ve written this article, I smell flowers — often. This ‘is’ Al’s article, per Al’s request.

One snowy day long ago, I attended my first convention. I drove a long distance; I didn’t know anyone — not one person.

As I picked up my handouts and registration, I still remember turning around in the large foyer bustling with activity and being a little overwhelmed by the large numbers of people — everyone seemed to be in groups, clusters — not alone, as I.

At noon, timidly, I entered the luncheon banquet. Approaching large round tables, I was promptly informed all seats were reserved, as people guarded empty chairs. After my fourth attempt, I started backing out of the room, too shy to stay. (After the fourth attempt, I made a plan: I would grab a bite to eat up the street; then return to the seminars after lunch. I would avoid the large round tables with formal plate settings.)

As I was backing up, someone firmly held my right elbow. A man in a gray suit, gray eyeglasses, gray hair said, “The lady will dine with me.” We walked to the front of the room. He started up the stairs to the dais.

I pulled back, he pulled forward.

Slowly he leaned over and said, “There are 600 people in this room. And they’re all watching you.”

I pleaded, whispered and begged, “no.”

He held my hand; we walked onto the podium to a round table. He pulled out a chair, pointed. He sat across from me at the large table. Each chair soon was occupied; a man approached the table where I sat, the only female. Al jumped up, threw his white napkin down, pointed to me, talking to the man. I tried to get up and to give him my chair. Al waved his hand in the air. That man left the podium.

Each person introduced himself. I was sitting with head court reporters of distinguished courts.

I lifted my water glass; the ice cubes shook. Buttering bread, the knife clinked against the plate. I remembered my granny used to say, “When in doubt, sit tall, hands folded, smile.”

My voice shook as I introduced myself, smiling. I whispered that I was a court reporter in Buffalo, New York, of just one year and sat tall. Al laughed, instructed me to speak up.

I looked across the table and finally inquired, “What is your name, sir?” He proclaimed, “I’m Al Weinstein, Chief Parliamentary Verbatim Reporter, United Nations.” I gasped. The men asked, “You didn’t know?” My gasp and big brown eyes answered each.

During lunch, attention was turned to me by Al. Where do you work? How do you like it? He pried until I opened up.

I had a job where we reported chemical/gas inhalations, medical testimony all day. The CDC, Center for Disease Control, arrived to record the correlation with Love Canal, the large factories and the many illnesses.

On many a day, I’d write 40 doctors each morning. (The doctors all wanted to be first and would line the walls, waiting to hurry in, hurry out.) My supervisor was tough.

The men at the round table on the dais were impressed that a court reporter straight out of college could do this. I told them: That’s my point — I was struggling. Tapes weren’t allowed. I had to type my own notes to prove I could write accurately. When I had problems, each day I was told I’d be fired by 4:00. On my first day, my supervisor pulled a chair next to me, watching my paper as it rolled out of my steno machine, while I wrote. She did this often, to see if I was ‘getting it’.

I softly, slowly shared with Al and the men at the table – now all focused on me- how I was so nervous during technical work that sweat appeared on the tips of my fingers and a few times my fingers had slipped between the keys on my steno machine, as my supervisor hovered next to me.

I spoke slowly, bright red, head down.

Their comments, conversations during that lunch changed my life. I didn’t eat. I couldn’t get the pasta around the fork or spoon; my hands shook. I listened to the mentoring, their wisdom.

After lunch, Al thanked me for joining them. Thanked me?

I left a new person. Someone believed in me. I made changes in my life, enrolled in paralegal school, moved to Miami, Florida. I reported in the federal and state courts, then relocated to San Antonio, Texas, continued my education.

I never forgot this man. I dedicated my second book, The Court Reporter Reference CSR, RPR, RMR, RDR Written Knowledge Test Workbook to Al Weinstein.

When I next attended an NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, convention I asked, “Where is the man who works in the U.N.”

Someone pointed to a petite man, white hair, white pants, white shoes, gold glasses.

“No. I want the U.N. man.”

I was firmly told, “That’s him!”

One hand holding his NCRA packet at his left hip, his right hand circled high above his head as he spoke. I waited until many had finished speaking to this important man. I waited by the elevator to introduce myself.

Softly, slowly I recounted how we met. Puzzled, he listened, head tilted.

I continued to fill in details – waiting for recognition. When we were done, tenderly this man, Al Weinstein, Chief Reporter of the United Nations, held my hands asking, “Did I help you?”

I gasped. I told him, “You changed my life. You don’t remember the incident? How many people do you drag up podiums?”

Al Weinstein’s eyes filled with tears. He hugged me like a long-lost friend.

Then I shared, I’d dedicated a book to him. Al smiled, holding my hands to his chest and said, “I still don’t remember you, but I did help you; right?”

Softly crying, Al’s eyes filled with tears; he asked me to write about this.

That moment and each thereafter, Al Weinstein would introduce me saying, “I don’t remember Monette, but see the difference someone can have!”

Thus began our friendship. Each year, he’d ask, “Do you have someone to sit with? Want to sit with us? Need a ticket? I’ll get you one.”

I did sit with Al. At every banquet, he’d tease me about getting us seats on the dais.

Across large convention rooms and restaurants, Al would yell, “If you need a ticket, just let me know …”

Oh, I enjoyed watching him. He never stood still. Approaching those who stood alone, always introducing himself, Al Weinstein was perfection in motion; our consummate diplomat.

The last time I saw him, Al moved slower. Still dressed as a golfer … right hand on his hip, the other grasping his forehead as Al talked and listened.

Al Weinstein, I’ve finally written your article. It is now preserved in the special anniversary edition of the National Court Reporters Association JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, under my column Beyond The Comfort Zone.

Al, my life is graced because of you. And yes, I will dine with you again … promise.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

16 Apr 2004