Kevin’s Sister

Mark Cuss Said To The Nymphs: CART Captioning Latin Classes

Mark Cuss Said To The Nymphs: CART Captioning Latin Classes

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

The phone rang Friday at 2:30. “Would you realtime, CART, a class? We need you Monday morning. It started two months ago. Oh, it’s Latin.”

As an experienced court reporter, instructor, tutor, I’m not lucky enough to get math or physics. The university request was for two semesters. I’d get a textbook Monday. I gulped, accepting the opportunity in 1999.

On Monday morning the student arrived, looked at me and my equipment near her seat, and stopped. I wrote on my computer, “My name is Monette. I’ve been asked to help you. Today will be the worst day I write. I don’t have a textbook yet. We’ll work as a team. I promise I’ll get better.”

The teacher began class. I began Latin.

I kid you not, my first day, the start of my first class: Callisto and the nymphs were having a metamorphosis over the birth of Arcas, Juno and the constellations and Mark Cuss (sic) said to the nymphs …

I’ve receive so many requests for information on how to write, how to CART, Latin. I tease: one prefix, root word, suffix at a time, and lots of fingerspelling. And somehow it translates – well, almost.

That day as each student read, translating sentences, learning declensions and tenses, I stroked sounds. When each student spoke Latin, I wrote, “Student Speaking Latin.”

Later I heard a gasp, and my consumer pointed to my realtime screen. I’d written: “Speaking Spanish.” (I had just finished CARTing to two large screens in one large room, five days for a large international Latino convention.)

I shook my head and wrote, “No, I just drifted. It’s still Latin.”

Immediately, in realtime, mortified, I erased those words from the screen.

But she and I got the giggles. Having begun our team building, we were now in the trenches together.

Writing this article, I asked the consumer’s permission to share how I (try to) realtime Latin.

Laney Fox, toes tapping and filled with energy, insisted on sharing.
Laney is deaf, raised oral deaf, and is now learning sign language.

We communicate with realtime, lipreading, sign language and gestures. Somehow it works. At the end of class I give her a rough ASCII disk (verbatim translation) of the entire class. Sometimes I’m reluctant to share it, but we’ve built a strong team communicating with each other and working with the university, instructor.

To provide CART (communication access realtime translation – voice-to-text) in this Latin class, I sit next to Laney with my computer on her desk. We share her text. I point to a selection if a student’s reading. If someone says a word I don’t know, I make a signed hand gesture (usually ASL), and Laney pushes the book to me (we’re sharing a desk for right-handed people; both of us are left-handed). I search for the word, fingerspell it and keep writing.

If the student’s reading from the book, I write, “Reading Latin” and point in the book as the student reads each word. (She likes to follow the class; this is her preference.)

If the student asks a question, I realtime each word to appear on the computer screen. When the professor gives explanations or references, I realtime each word.

Laney makes notes in the text and a notebook and reads my computer screen. As I learn more Latin (actually, sounds), I’m stitching words together. When she’s called upon, Laney translates Latin to English. She answers and asks questions. I stroke Latin phrases.

Sometimes Laney asks, “How do you pronounce that?”
The professor answers in Latin.

I phonetically stroke the word with spaces between sounds. She watches my phonetic translation and reads the word. (I always hold my breath.)

Initially I’d entered sounds in my dictionary when I was preparing to realtime. (I have CARTed to a large screen for St. Francis Di Paola, a Catholic Deaf mass, and various religious, interesting events since 1993.)

Preparing for religious events, I placed sounds with my asterick key, globaling strokes, so when I hit specific keys, they appear as phonetic, English sounds. I now can fingerspell a word faster than stroking it, but when it’s Latin, I have to rely on phonetics.

Sounds help me to help Laney in a Latin university setting at Trinity University.

Laney Fox shares, “Many people think it’s rude to correct a deaf person’s speech. It may be rude for strangers to do that, but after forming a relationship, I think it’s perfectly nice for someone to try to help out a deaf person’s speech.I know many vocabulary words. I simply don’t know how to pronounce them; English is one odd language. The words pronounced do not look the way they are written.”

One weekend I traveled to speak to a state court reporting convention.On my way back, Sunday afternoon, the airplane was canceled. I traveled all night to arrive in San Antonio with only minutes to get to class straight from the airport. I had on yesterday’s clothes.

I wrote, “This is not gonna be pretty; I’ve not slept in two days.”

Laney said, “You don’t have to be good today. It’s OK.”

My heart sang. This is why I do this. I worked so hard to “be good” for Laney.

After class, she said, “You were much better than I thought you were going to be. You were ‘good’ today.”

I sighed and placed my forehead down on the tiny desk on top of my warm computer.

Laney says, “I was so surprised to see Monette come in, telling me she was traveling all night. I would have stayed home and let her go through a class, clueless. After that, I learned her dedication to my involvement in Latin.”

If you want to provide this service, make sure you have a phonetic dictionary you can stroke. Become a confident fingerspeller. Build a rapport with the consumer and teacher. We’ve had challenges. But we’ve worked with gestures, signals and me asking, “Does this make sense?”

Listen for vents that open and close. External sounds interfere when students answer around your seat. Make sure you can hear everyone – front, back and to the side.

Don’t be afraid to tell the class when you have problems. If you can’t hear, others probably can’t hear.

Insist on faculty parking (since we haul heavy equipment, wear and tear dragging our equipment that is bumping over pavement may affect your computer, steno machine). You must have a text and all handouts.

I write all external sounds – sneezing, coughing, birds, stomachs grumbling. I am her ears. If I hear it, I write it.

Keep a sense of humor. Two months into the course, I phoned my dad. Emmett was raised in Jesuit schools, was an altar boy and graduated from Fordham University. He loves Latin.

When I told him about this assignment, he said, “You are in way over your head.”

I laughed and said, “Nope. Gonna do this one, do it well. I’m going to work hard, but I’m going to do this.”

So when I phoned to ask, “What is Ovid, Ovidian?” He howled.

Emmett said, “That’s the author of the huge orange text you’re carrying around. Haven’t you even looked at the cover?”

I laughed, “Nope, been everywhere else, but not the cover.”

After each class I look to Laney. She’s so forgiving and understanding. You must explain how and why words do not translate; why “funnies” pop up. She smirks and giggles when “stuff” appears.

Laney, “I love when we translate Latin stories in class. It’s fun to watch Monette. She frantically waves her arms when she can’t hear. I just love the energy to get me into class discussion.”

If I’d been told I’d be CARTing, realtiming, Latin and giving a rough ASCII verbatim disk to someone in a university classroom, I’d have never believed it. Not in a million years.

But now Marcus, those nymphs, the etymology of Latin with dative, conjugative, ablative, pluperfect, passive prosody applying to dactylic hexameter with basic rules of syntax trans – well, almost.

And it was just my luck to get a Latin honors students with whom I could expand my skills and learn so much about her world.

Today someone asked me how I was doing. I said, “I feel like a character on the I Love Lucy shows.”

The lady replied, “Without the soundtrack?”

Yeah – without the “sound-track”. But I’m looking forward to the final exam. After all, this is Latin.

And Laney Fox was first runner-up in the Deaf Texas Beauty Pageant. Yes, I am honored to be embraced within the deaf and HOH world. She and I are excited to share our passion for this technology with each of you.

Next we write Laney’s experiences and thoughts about receiving CART. Laney, “I want to share to help others. I really do.” Laney insists on sharing – as do I.

Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has 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 assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

02 Apr 2020

Laney’s Latin; Hearing Not Required, CART Captioning University Latin

Laney’s Latin; Hearing Not Required, CART Captioning University Latin

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Laney Fox and I became a team, in the trenches, during her first semester in Latin.

Previously, I wrote how I’m CARTing (communication access real-time translation), realtiming, her classes. I am a court reporter, instructor, author, and tutor translating verbatim voice-to-text upon request for Laney.

I’ve watched Laney blossom in Latin!

Her deafness may be viewed by others. Limitations may be viewed by others, but not to Laney. Her world is full of life and possibilities.

We hope our articles inspire others to step onto the branch, to feel the breeze – to create a new dream, to see it grow. Laney has a zest for life and has many dreams. Sharing her world and life, to help others, is important to her. As Laney repeatedly says (toes tapping), “I ‘want’ to help others. I really ‘want’ to help others.”

Laney was born healthy; she had her hearing. She became deaf approximately near 13 months old, possibly from a 24-hour virus/fever. They are not “entirely positive.”

Laney was mainstreamed into her first “hearing school” during fourth grade after nine years of oral education at C.I.C., Central Institute of the Deaf, in St. Louis.

Her parents relocated the family to Baltimore after a job promotion. “So it was decided that I remain in the C.I.C. dorms for another year to continue my education to speak,” says Laney. “However, I was not happy at the dorms. So I left to join my family. My parents told me that they decided to raise me orally first to see if this was the best method for me to grow up with. They said if I wasn’t happy being orally raised, they would have taken me out of C.I.C. and enrolled me in a signing school. My parents were not trying to make me ‘hearing,’ as some people assume. My parents just wanted to see what was the best way to go.”

“When they saw that I was living a happy childhood with many other children, they decided to continue with this method. They simply did not see the need to teach me sign language when they saw that I was doing well in school and sports.”

“I chose to learn sign language in my senior year of high school. I wanted to see what it was like to communicate through sign language.
My parents didn’t hold me back; they were totally supportive, but still to this day my parents don’t know sign language. This doesn’t bother me. It just allows me to participate in both worlds.”

“If I had a choice, I would have gone a slightly different way. I would have chosen to teach a deaf child sign language when the child is in middle school (after the language acquisition period closes … to ensure that the child’s speech doesn’t deteriorate) to allow the child to communicate the best way that a child can. At least the child would know how to communicate through the hearing world and the deaf world.”

“I think children should learn both ways for total communication. Parents should not let the child place more emphasis on sign language. Parents should work more on oral speaking throughout childhood. It’s important that children are able to speak, so they have a choice in their communication when they enter the real world.”

I asked Laney to describe her Latin experiences with a CART captioner. When I first appeared, Laney -had not received any notice from my Friday afternoon request to this Monday morning class – walked in, took one look at my equipment, stopped in her tracks.

“Let’s say I wasn’t expecting a captioner who was so dedicated to help me learn and ‘hear’ Latin,” Laney says.

“Some high school teachers knew that it was hard for me to understand them in lecture tone. When I was in high school, I took Latin for three years. But I always felt that I was missing out something (which I did because I failed the Latin placement test after three years of Latin!). I’d come into the class prepared with my version of the story and try to gather all corrections from other students. The teacher never corrected my versions.”

“However, I had many questions for the teacher after class. I think sometimes they were the same questions asked in class because he seemed frustrated when I kept asking questions about the translations or the lecture. I don’t think he ever truly understood my deafness. Anyway, I always depended on the students to tell me whether mine was right or wrong. In fact, I had a student, David; I would give him my translations. Then he would correct mine, and return my translations with all kinds of errors marked. He helped me for one year in (high school) Latin. I am grateful for his generosity.”

Laney had to deal with another problem. “I never heard the other students’ questions, translations or the professor’s corrections,” she explains.

“All of my learning relied on my own translations for three years. Throughout this time I didn’t know sign language; I didn’t have anyone to sign to me.”

“In my first semester at this university, Trinity, I’d write out translations before I went to class and have someone look over them. I was rather lucky in this class; there’s an excellent book that contains all the information lectured by the professor. I also had a notetaker, so I had more help than I was accustomed to.”

Laney was enrolled in Latin for two months before I was asked to CART (Communication Access Real Time Translation) caption for her (on a Friday afternoon) and give her a rough ASCII disk at the end of each class (beginning the following Monday morning).

The CART assistance has been a boon, per Laney and her instructor.

Laney says, “Now I enjoy class tremendously when we’re translating stories (instead of lecture days).”

“It’s more fun to watch Monette trying to get everything. When she can’t hear, she flaps her arms around. She also taps my shoulder to grab my attention for her corrections on her screen. I just love her energy to get me into class discussion.”

And when I could not hear, we changed rooms. And when the students could hear doors loudly squeaking, and I had to keep writing “doors squeaking,” the doors were oiled, per my request. The university, professor and students have all become part of this CART captioning team.

As I sweated and struggled to realtime Latin, I talked to Laney about my work, explained why ‘stuff’ popped up correctly – or not. Laney appreciated the information about my experiences in court reporting.

“I didn’t know what to really expect from a captioner. But when Monette Benoit told me that ‘all’ court reporters want to strive to be the best, I was very impressed. When she would get upset with the CART equipment, computer screen, at first I didn’t understand why she would get so frustrated.”

“I was so happy that I could at least have an idea of what everyone else was talking about. It didn’t matter whether you mistyped ‘declension’ or whatever. I now knew what was going on. I am entirely grateful for Monette’s help in showing the pronunciations of the words I was unfamiliar with.”

Laney is enrolled full-time at Trinity University and attends sign language classes once a week in the evening. She volunteers with Best Buddies (a program for people who are mentally retarded). “I just take my Best Buddy out to have some fun,” she says.

And what does Laney want to do with her life?

“My plans for the future are to become a veterinarian. I would love to be able to understand animals and be able to communicate with them. I am amazed how animals and humans can still communicate through body language, even without speaking. I would love to learn many more things about animals and perhaps help the world understand more about the animals we know so little about.”

So, do you want to help others?

Our wish is that you will want to help others – and yourself.

This is a great time to be a court reporter and work with deaf, hard-of-hearing people. Life is good! Hearing, sound, is not required to expand your life, to blossom and to grow. Just ask Laney Fox. She’d really like to “hear” from you.

Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has 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 assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

30 Mar 2020

CARTing ‘Up And Out’ And Captain Kevin

CARTing ‘Up And Out’ And Captain Kevin
By Monette Benoit

~~ Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

Now and then we’re granted special events we remember for a long, long time. Some can be confidential.

The jobs I’m writing about here were not your typical day at the office.

Originally I wanted special CART (communication access realtime translation, instant voice to text) moments to remain private.

Then my life shifted; it was altered.

Two weeks after the 2000 San Diego installation of NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, president Mike Brentano, my world changed forever.

I received the call no one wants.

My terminally ill youngest (he hated the word ‘baby’) brother died August 5th, 2000.

Two years prior, 12/23/97, Kevin was privately diagnosed with hepatitis C, HCV.

After his diagnosis, Kevin learned that in 1976 he was infected during experiment vaccinations in the military.  Documented.  Proven.  A.  Fact.

A hospital ward was cleared for the arrival of his troop – before they arrived.  Documented.  Proven. A.  Fact.

Captain Kevin Drue Donnelly passionately spent day and night researching, assisting veterans, their families and medical researchers. He died suddenly, tragically alone.

Many court reporters knew of my brother’s illness and his work.

At my request, Kevin also helped veterans, family members, deaf, hard-of-hearing individuals and court reporters (and members of their families) each diagnosed with HCV.

Kevin encouraged everyone, researched information specific for each person, so they could move forward with hope and facts.

Kevin also worked to develop the first Hepatitis C Support Forums.

Captain Kevin documented and proved that the HCV, hep C, virus and other viruses are shared by pneumatic guns, which routinely shared the same needles with multiple soldiers and individuals. Depression is a side of effect of Hep C, and as many know, depression is an often misunderstood illness.

Kevin designed a website that he and LeighAnn Vogel built to assist veterans, families, professionals and children of diagnosed individuals. Some of Kevin’s work may be accessed at http://www.geocities.com/hepvet/index.html

Their web site was the first private web site to be attached by the VA, Veterans Administration, sharing information Kevin gathered to specifically veterans and their families.

The afternoon of his death, prior to the call, my family gathered with my dad to help his recovery from cancer surgery.

Due to dad’s surgery and recuperation, I flew alone to Kevin’s funeral.

August 10th, 2000, in Calverton Cemetery, a military graveyard, I waited in the noon sun for his casket to be delivered to the empty hole in the ground – I learned after standing ‘there’ that the gravediggers ‘had gone’ to lunch. I stared at the lime green chalk with a number marked on a cement wall inside the ‘hole’ – the number marked was the cemetery plot marker before his casket arrived in a dark purple 18-wheeler.

I humbly share that it was the comfort of mentors, court reporters, National Court Reporters Association staff, and kind strangers who strengthened me.

I canceled my JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, “Beyond The Comfort Zone” column from one airport, stood on long lines alone.

Stunned, I phoned a few friends as I waited to board planes.

My court reporting friends insisted I go.  They said:  You. Must. Go. You. Must. Witness.  You know how to listen.

Yes, we court reporters have mastered listening, watching.

When I did not check in with one reporter, that reporter was going to phone another reporter “living near the cemetery to go out there and find you. Thank God you phoned… You and I both know the reporter would have found you.  We find necessary details…”  (One of the few giggles I had for the ‘burial’ was that moment. We are focused.)

I found the words and courage from others to buck-me-up for what I saw, heard, viewed…

They helped me to go, stand tall, listen, fly home, then find sense of my world – especially when I learned the wrong rank had been placed on his tombstone by his grieving widow.  Oh?

Even court reporters – and I – were stunned by ‘that’.  Yes, I documented.  Yes, it was fixed to his correct rank: Captain.  Yes, at taxpayers expense.

When none of Kevin’s research was returned to the Hep C community – and when the community offered to buy “only computer address work” for his work, research, I placed all the data (learned that word from Kevin) on the floor, like he had done one day.

I began to move pieces of paper along the floor, like Kevin had done when he saw his military records had been ‘doctored’ from the copy he was mailed after diagnosis and the copy he was given years before.  Another. Fact.

When my grieving parents were hurt by other moments, I got up off that floor – like Kevin did.  And I went to work.

I left the court reporting field.  I focused, like Kevin did.  And I was helped by people who wanted their messages, facts to be public – yes, like Kevin was helped.

And each year I began to write updates on the day Kevin died – sharing more, more, and more – as more sentences by people who would not return his work – attempted to become accurate facts – when they were in fact lies.

I leaned into the wind.

I remembered the promises to Kevin that I would help “if you can.”

Due to the facts that were delivered to me, I made the decision that I never would have made without such c-r-a-p.

I focused on truth.  Yes.  Truth. I was able to document facts, truth – and my life shifted in directions I never saw possible prior to August 5, 2000.

During the quiet time, I experienced many incidents that spurred me to write this article.

I am honoring those moments. And now I have a special message to share.

Traditionally, my CART, communication access real-time translation (instant voice-to-text display on a computer) request assists deaf, hard-of-hearing, people learning English, etc.

But I received a unique request many moons ago.

They wanted CART and a verbatim disk immediately thereafter. Fine.

The consumer was not deaf or hearing challenged. Fine.

I was requested because “sometimes high energy field surges blow out electricity recording the event.”

Excuse me?

I needed more information.

The person scheduling the event was a medium, a clairvoyant.

The client wanted to speak to a dead relative. (Yes, like you, I paused a little there too.)

They requested CART captioning for an instant verbatim text record.

Could I write on battery to prevent electrical blips?

In court I wrote hearings, motions. Was the plaintiff really injured?

I wrote jury trials.

Was the defendant, alleged criminal, in fact, innocent?

I know they are innocent until proven guilty, but officers of the court (almost always) are entitled to information that the jury often may not receive.

We know information is almost always retained by prosecutors, police, judges – details that are not delivered.

I still remember the divorce law firm that nailed everything down – stapler, sofa cushions, books, etc.

I felt ‘safer’ in criminal court than the one and only divorce deposition I ever reported.  Nope.  I was scared that entire deposition as emotions – were – extreme.

I did not judge others when my skills were used in depositions, hearings, court, more… Was this different?

I thought about seven years of CART captioning deaf masses, PTA/school meetings, religious events, university Latin classes, the McGruff Dog (he had paw surgery, so he could sign to the deaf children), country dancing lessons, funerals, conventions, where I felt privileged to share CART captioning. They required instant verbatim text delivery.

I thought about friends who would scream if they knew.

I envisioned my mom smiling, praying; my Jesuit-schooled father sighing, glancing skyward.

With an open mind, lots of prayer, I accepted.

I entered terms in my job dictionary to include psychics, mediums, shamans, metaphysical, tarot, clairvoyants, mystics and yes, I entered the term: ghostbusters.

I realtimed with the screen turned down, charged batteries to avoid electrical problems.

The ‘reading’ began with prayer, moved quickly into personal information.

Pets, nicknames, childhood memories, favorite foods were shared before communication began.

I remember holding my breath – concerned sudden inhales could invade their privacy.

I ended with wonder (and some shock).

Everyone was so thankful I shared my CART captioning skills. I’d been part of something very personal.

I received other calls.

Each different; each adhered to a Code of Ethics. And, yes, I continued to pray and attend church.

As a result of that work, I received a CART captioning request for a telephonic medical intuitive.

Their appointment had been scheduled two years earlier. This was a medical doctor with a PhD. using psychic abilities to ‘read’ problems from the past and future for someone’s heath.

Again, I charged batteries, globaled, moved forward.

Later, I CARTed a homicide detective sharing a file report.

I am convinced that when someone asks for any verbatim record, a court reporter is the necessary professional.

I tease that as an experienced court reporter I can write anything spoken and/or mumbled.

CART captioners can bring comfort to people who are grieving. When CARTing funerals for who are hard-of-hearing and/or deaf children and adults, I experienced peace while sharing so others could participate.

We can assist with closure involving people close to the center.

I feel privileged to sit at the edge of the circle, to hear what I did.

Faith is personal.

Messages are private.

My brother died young and sadly, much too fast.

He is no longer here to share laughter, to guide me with his courage, wisdom, friendship, and wicked sense of humor with his ‘only’ sister.

Kevin will never send a funny or informative email I could keep or could choose to share with friend, court reporters, and mentors.

I draw comfort from my quiet moments, from those with insights, loving guidance.

We can instantly realtime anything… verbal, spiritual and, now I know, even spirits.

I’m grateful for spiritual moments, for hearing ‘Up and Out’ utilizing CART captioning with an open mind and an open heart.

My work is still private.

My life is forever changed due to my CART captioning skills, the death of my brother, and the possibilities I want to share with each of you.

Further information about Captain Kevin Drue Donnelly is included:  www.captainkevindonnelly.com

Named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, Monette may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has 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 assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

05 Aug 2018

Thumb Wrestling and Smoken; Ask The Coach, Part III of III

Thumb Wrestling and Smoken; Ask The Coach, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit
All Rights Reserved.

Part I began: Did you know there is a Thumb Wrestling Federation, TWF, and the United Kingdom has World Thumb Wrestling Championships? This is serious business for a sport originally called “thumb-a-war.”

How does this relate to court reporters, CART – Communication Access Realtime Translation – providers, broadcast captioners, and students? …

Years ago, I wrote “CART FAQ, Falling On Deaf Ears” a series of articles posted on my blog, Monette’s Musings, and online by NCRA.

I have CARTed college-level Latin for an oral deaf honors student. I did not know Latin. I stroked sounds, which tranned, translated, as Latin.

I spent many years CARTing church services to a large screen for a Catholic mass devoted to people who are Deaf. A sign interpreter was always present, and we worked side by side.

Additionally, I have CARTed funeral services, baptisms, retirement parties, large conventions, technical meetings, medical events, Quinceanera celebrations, the McGruff Dog, puppets, a mime (yes, a deaf mime), plays, musicals, clairvoyants, Girl Scout groups, Knights of Columbus, and multiple intimate settings.

Part II began: My thumb wrestling referral above was for the moments when I work with students and professionals who tell me
“I was not able to find my thumbs today.”

Yes, we have a few days like that. If you are outside our profession and are reading this, I want you to know that those
moments are rare. Truly.

While tutoring and coaching students and veteran reporters who are seeking to meet new goals and to create a higher skill set I listen to people share their private moments when fingers just do not go where they “should go.” In short, it happens.

My initial thumb wrestling comment was shared within a tutor/coach setting with an experienced judicial reporter preparing for
advanced NCRA certification. It was said in jest; we both laughed.

Soon, someone called my office for “certifying test prep material.”

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs, www.CRRbooks.com, has a 95 % success pass for candidates testing the first time with our test prep material.

Quickly, I learned that this request for “test prep” had nothing to do with court reporting or with any legal field.

When I stated that I was not able to help him, he began to tell me about his work, his stresses, his frustrations, his needs.

Not wanting to be rude, and needing to create a boundary after I stated multiple times, “I do not have access to the material

you are seeking,” I was brought to his reality when he exhaled, “I just feel like I’m all thumbs. I need to smoke that test. I mean, when I start something I approach it with smoken attitude.”

I sat in my chair staring at the ceiling, hands folded in my lap, waiting for the moment to politely end the call as he picked up speed and energy.

When he referred to “thumbs” and “smoken,” I shared about thumb wresting.

The man said, “I love that! And while I have you, I have always wanted to know how that funny, little back machine works. Did you know it has no letters on the black keys?”

I did not sigh, groan, or exhale.

“Really? I’ll have to research that,” I said softly.

He did not sigh, groan, or exhale.

“You know this. You just want to get off the phone, right?” he said.

“That’s accurate,” I replied.

Then we had us a long silence.

He broke our silence: “Well, since I’m all thumbs, and you do not have anything to help me, I’m going to look into the thumb

wrestling, so when I’m prepared for my test, I’ll smoke my test. And I’ll probably phone you again for tutoring and coaching.

You’ve already helped me, and God knows that I will need more help! I need a life coach now.”

Thumb wrestling, our steno machine, our exacting work, clients and consumers, test prep material, people outside our

profession, all thumbs, advancing credentials, setting new goals, advancing skills, private tutoring, life coaching, and smoken.

In short, there we have it. The end.

Part I of III is posted March 17, 2014, Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted April 11, 2014, Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted April 29, 2014, Monette’s Musings, 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 Life 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 life coaching?

Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment life 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 life 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 (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 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 Life 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 life 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.

29 Apr 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

My Village Chief is HOH, Part I of III

My Village Chief is HOH, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: My village chief sprinted into a parent’s hospital room wearing shorts, sandals (no socks), and a NCAA basketball T-shirt, Saturday morning.

He was all business, dressed casually. When he spoke his first two sentences, I knew. I listened and focused on the voice I know well.

When he turned his head, I saw the aid. Then, I saw the second hearing aid.

He scheduled surgery, shook our hands, left to return to (his words), “What else? NCAA playoffs. You can phone my home; here’s my number. Nothing by mouth after midnight, okay?”

My parent said, “I like him.”

The nurses, “The doctor can’t hear very well. Everyone knows he has problems on the phone.”

I had been quiet. “He has high coping skills. His hearing aids greatly assist him.”

A nurse with IVs and a bleeding cath line, “If you want to speak to him you have to speak loud.”

I said softly, “He is highly trained. Wearing two hearing aids, I have great faith in this man.”

Another nurse, “People have trouble understanding him.”

I did not roll my eyes. My parent asked (knowing I have worked with hard of hearing, HOH, and Deaf since 1993), “Do you think he can hear me, others, and operate with hearing aids?”

I smiled, “Very much so. He will do an excellent job.” The nurses remained silent.

The next morning at 7 a.m. we rolled into pre-op.

I said I would wait in the room for updates.

O.R. staff insisted that I wait in the designated surgical area.

I looked to the surgeon, “No. I’ll wait in the room for your updates.” He nodded; off they went.

Post-op the doctor sprinted into the room, “It’s much quieter in here. Thank you. Now let me tell you what happened.”

I asked if I could write medical terms he was sharing – technical terms – including “this is very bad – could kill … We have a cacophony of bad events …”

He nodded, “I know you’re a court reporter. Sure.”

I wrote new medical words. He gently corrected my spelling. I felt guided.

Then I said, “I need a village chief right now. It’s been so many months with two very ill parents. There’s so many doctors I can’t count. Many do not speak to each other as they ‘round’ giving different orders and meds. If you guide me, I’ll follow. Would you be my village chief?”

He beamed, nodded, and touched my left elbow.

Then he lowered his voice, “May I ask ‘you’ something?”

I nodded.

My village chief pointed to the TV (I had turned captions on), “I know you’re a court reporter, teacher and author; you do that.” (I had not spoken about my work.)

He paused, “Can any court reporter do that?” pointing to flawless live captions.

I ducked my head, thinking … thinking.

He leaned in to hear my answer.

“May I ask you something first?” I asked softly.

Part I of III is posted September 2, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted September 12, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted September 23, 2011, 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.

02 Sep 2011

HV with HCV: Captain Kevin Donnelly

“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark;

the real tragedy in life is when men are afraid of the light.”

–Plato

HV with HCV = Helping Veterans and Families with Hep C

www.captainkevindonnelly.com

Posted by Kevin’s Sister

“Why? I gave him my Word.”

14 Nov 2009