late deafened

CART Captioning And The $10,000 Spaghetti Dinner – Monsignor Balty Janacek

CART Captioning And The $10,000 Spaghetti Dinner

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

The CART (Communication Access Real-time Translation) community and all court reporters lost a devoted friend on April 30th, 2007. My life and our profession were improved by this gentleman.

I had been CARTing San Antonio’s St. Francis Di Paola Deaf Mass for many years.

One Sunday morning before a mass, privately a new priest introduced himself, spelling his name B-a-l-t-y.

He waited for me to stop writing to shake my hand (I was CARTing with steno machine) — He charmed parishioners with this gesture.

Then the new priest walked to the altar, and introduced himself to the Deaf community, “I’m the new priest and will learn sign.”

We welcomed him with deaf applause.

Balty was proud of his Czech background. He had a deep love of cultures and languages.

He often spoke Spanish while I realtimed – writing verbatim text projected to a large screen on the altar from my steno machine.

I’d sigh; he’d smile and then translate.

As we became friends, I learned Balty was ordained in 1950.

Serving multiple roles he was devoted to causes close to his heart.

Balty remained involved with Native Americans and tirelessly worked to mediate retrieval of their remains, bones, from the University of Texas at San Antonio, UTSA.

I am not surprised that he donated his body to UTSA.

Balty was parochial vicar at San Fernando Cathedral (where Davy Crockett is buried).

Since 1967, he was director of four 18th-century Old Spanish Missions for the Archdiocese (the active parishes of Concepcion, San Jose, San Juan, and Espada Missions).

Balty established the San Antonio Mission National Historical Park and a historic cooperative agreement with the National Park Service, which the NPS is working to model around the United States.

His picture was in our newspaper so often that I’d phone Balty teasing him that he was my “Where’s Waldo?”

Balty was absolutely devoted to his extended family, organizing Schulenburg, Texas, reunions with nieces and nephews.

I extended multiple holiday invitations, but he’d say, “I want to spend time with the girls (nuns). I’ve known many for 50 years; they’re good cooks. Can you understand?”  Yes.

Much later when he handed me his business card, I saw his title Monsignor Janacek. I almost gasped.  Me, “I didn’t know…”

He shrugged, “Balty – really.” Balty was the “jolly” man who arrived with his peace sign.

One Sunday, Balty asked my former husband and me to lunch.

He asked me what I needed to CART for the Deaf. (CART is communication access realtime translation.

I used my equipment writing to a large screen with instant translation for the Deaf mass.)

‘Then husband’ did not hesitate, “Her equipment is seven years older since she began to volunteer. She has wear and tear on her equipment.”

I blinked, immediately swallowing warm Black Eyed Pea cornbread.

Balty smiled, “How much would it cost for the church to purchase new equipment? Monette, could you use our equipment?”

Balty and my husband wrote numbers on paper napkins as I watched.

Then Balty turned to me, “How about $10,000? Would that work, Monette? What do you need? The Christopher Columbus Society is having their spaghetti dinner. I’ll ask them.”

Lunch was wonderful, and we never ventured back to the topic as we laughed and enjoyed our time together that sunny day.

Church members were accustomed to me rushing up aisles 15 minutes before our Deaf mass.

To prep equipment, I darted around people praying, families posing for pictures after baptisms and other church events.

Parents and parishioners prevented small children from playing with my equipment, understanding my frantic movements each Sunday.

Soon Balty called, “They agreed!”

This event is famous.

Politicians and judges arrive to shake hands. Spaghetti is homemade; all you can eat. I attended and was thanked by lines of volunteers serving family recipes.

Balty waved at me as I stood in line – signing, joking, receiving my hugs and shoulder rubs (a Deaf ‘thing’).

Then, he sat at our long table as we ate our spaghetti. He was busy laughing and listening and enjoying the event.

Balty purchased all my hardware and court reporting software.

I prepared paperwork; he cut checks. We were a good team, and Deaf were thrilled everyone supported their community.

I have wonderful memories of Balty.

I fondly remember when Balty casually commented that women should have rights to become priests. (His predecessor preferred ‘only’ Latin masses and fasting.)

I paused before stroking “those” words.

Parishioners paused, too – looking to my large screen, narrowing their eyes. My hands poised above my steno keyboard,

Balty looked at me and slowly nodded.

As I realtimed his words, Balty paused, too.

After a long silence, people coughed, looked to one another, and then looked up to my (large) screen at the (large) all upper cap text.

Then, small groups stood and ever so slowly side-stepped to the center aisle.

They gave him one slow final look before each quietly and politely exiting the church that morning.

Later I teased Balty, “Well, you won’t be seeing the front of their faces any time soon. Before you arrived, standing room only.  Now?  Wide open spaces.” He smiled, eyes soft.

I phoned Balty when remarkable events occurred.

I was honored how he shared his life – on and off the record. I became protective of Balty as he detailed his world, expanding mine.

In 2000, I moved away from San Antonio. (I returned 2002.) The National Court Reporters Association’s, NCRA, 2001 mid-year was in San Antonio, so when I flew in, I went to my room and immediately called Balty, “I’m up the road.”

Balty instantly recognized my voice, “Monette, hi; I’ll hurry this wedding rehearsal and be right there!”

The hotel lobby had open seating. He ordered “two glasses of your finest wine.”

He raised his glass and began singing to me. Balty had a deep melodic voice; he sang in Spanish.

(Balty did not lower his voice; crystal wine glass held high, he sang.)

Stunned, I watched others watch me before I relaxed, listening. When Balty finished, he raised his glass higher and toasted me.

I whispered, “I don’t understand what you just sang. It sounded beautiful.”

Balty laughed, “Monette, I sang a love song to you.”

I blinked hard.  A. Really.  Hard.  Blink.

Balty smiled, “I sang this song to thank you for all you’ve done. I sang so you will always remember this moment.

As we dined, court reporters trolled and stopped to chat at our table.

(Balty wore a solid black shirt. I watched Balty remove his white collar the moment he entered the hotel. I teased him about being off-duty.)

Bill Weber was incoming NCRA president. His board of directors had driven into the Hill Country to film a movie for his induction.

I proudly introduced NCRA directors, many wearing country overalls, to “the man who raised $10,000 with spaghetti to purchase CART equipment.”

Every court reporter thanked him. Oh, how Balty laughed and smiled. His eyes twinkled, and he enjoyed every moment.

Hours later, court reporters stood at the elevators waving good-bye to my friend – their new friend Balty, B-a-l-t-y, he would spell his name.

Balty waved – waiting for me to get into an elevator. I waved – waiting for him to leave. And we met more people at those elevators.

He and I waited for the other to turn.

We spent hours at the elevators talking, laughing and having great fun as I introduced Balty to many friends.

Court reporters still comment on that moment when they see me.

When diagnosed with leukemia, Balty was optimistic.

I’d phone his private cell phone; he’d answer, “Hi, Moe-net!”

I could hear Spanish in the background, and he was frequently in a southside clinic “waiting to be seen.”

Once I joked that he’d spent more than 50 years visiting hospitals – perhaps he could get an appointment.

Softly Balty said, “Monette, I’m with my people; this is where I want to be.”  Ahhhh.  Yes.

I encouraged Balty to record his memoirs.

I wanted one tape for the church and another detailed version for his family, describing historic, momentous events he transformed.

I teased him that he should have a glass of red wine and sit and talk. I knew his family would want these tapes.

We kept in touch as Balty rounded the last corner of his life.

I would phone his cell phone, and we would laugh and listen to the other.

I always had his name on my to-call list. Each Monday, I put his name on my list.

His last Sunday, April 30, 2007, I had phone in hand dialing his number that afternoon when I was distracted to a family moment. I put the phone down.

I knew I would find the time to phone him. His name remained on my list.

I did not know that Balty recently left his archdiocese apartment.

Alone, he checked into hospice.

I did not know he had few visitors.

That Sunday he “snuck out to a Mexican restaurant with his family; nuns looked the other way.”

Later, he watched Spurs basketball on TV – they won.

Monsignor Balthasar Janacek died that night at 80 years of age.

I learned from his family, “When the nurse checked on him at 3 a.m., he was cold, talking in Czech.

A little while later he was speaking in English to his mother. He said, ‘Mom, I don’t think I am going to make it.’”

Balty’s card remains in my wallet. I haven’t been able remove it. I now live with mindful regrets that I’ll never be able to write his name on another call list. Oh, he was proud of CART providers and captioners, our skills, how we help people. Balty was our biggest fan.

I want you to know this about Balty. He was special to so many people for so long.

And I believe that Balty Janacek is greeting his family, friends, and strangers with a peace sign, kind words, laughter, and beautiful song.

——-  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.

25 Apr 2020

Simple Silence; Have ‘You’ Ever Heard Sound; Oral Deaf Friends Meet; Silence is All I Know…

Simple Silence; Have ‘You’ Ever Heard Sound; Oral Deaf Friends Meet; Silence is All I Know…                                 

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

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

 

I want to plant a seed; simple silence.  Silence is powerful. I have Deaf friends (their term) who would not change their deafness. They embrace their world.

A special memory was created when I introduced two people who have been deaf since childhood.

I met each through my CART, communication access real-time translation, captioning work. They did not know each other and wanted to meet.

I met my friends for Sunday morning lunch (I called it ‘breaking bread together’) at a golf country club.  I was a club visitor.  Separately, each spent much time on the golf courses with their families.  This was a comfortable environment for them.

While ordering food at the counter (which was then delivered), one friend stood with his hands tucked in his khaki pants pockets, shoulders back and down. He was reading our lips.

My other friend, the young lady, had her hands on the counter, and was reading the menu and watching our lips.

She and I were signing (ASL, American Sign Language). He does not sign; refuses to learn; he is oral deaf. I knew sign language before she –and taught young lady first signs before she enrolled in ASL classes.

Because he refuses to learn ‘any’ sign language and is vocal (yes) about this – (very professional job, technical work) -, she and I signed – to each other – playfully, no verbal communication.  Friends (can) do that… Yes. And we did.  She and I laughed.  He did not… which made ‘it’ that much funnier. Great culture, rich deep – it ‘was’ funny, for us – soon, he was laughing, too.

My male friend said, voice a tad louder than might have been for the Sunday country club, “Have you ever heard sound?”

I stepped back to watch this communication.

The young dude taking our order gasped; golfers stepped away.

She voiced, “I don’t think so.  I don’t know.”

My friends looked to me, paused, and smiled ‘ear to ear’.

My male friend paused, his two hands in his pockets, “I have no sound.  Nothing!  Never heard sound.  Did you?”

She, still signing to me, voiced, “Maybe. I might have. I do not remember.”

Within the restaurant and outdoor patio, mature “bruncher” (my term) adults were seated at little round tables wearing tennis and golfing outfits.

Individuals now were ‘frozen’ (similar to within a photograph) – their food and fork suspended midair. Everyone clearly heard this conversation about sound.

Everyone, many with raised eyebrows, waited. No one – and I mean ‘no one’ – moved. I softly giggled and returned my attention to my friends.

My friends wrapped up the conversation, “I wonder what sound is like.  Silence is good.  It’s all I know.”

The counter-dude had not spoken to my friends while they ordered their lunch. He – as too many – spoke to me, asking me what they wanted – after my friends had spoken their order – yes – to counter-dude.

Yes, I worked to change that.  My friends handled the situation. How?  Per their request, I ordered. They gave me ‘that’ look; each stepped back – eyes cast downward for a moment.  Then, new friends, they began a new new conversation.

I glanced behind me one more time.  (Court reporter reaction, perhaps?)

People were now eating; yet there was no conversation in the room or patio.  There was complete silence.

People worked to avoid eye contact with us.  I remember the moment well.  And I ordered a glass of wine (just before noon on Sunday), which I slowly sipped, watching the moments unfold in real-time as my two friends shared, confided, laughed, and we each enjoyed this time together.

Why am I sharing this special memory?  I believe court reporters are sensitive to sound.  It is, after all, our bread and butter.  Deaf friends have asked, “Is there technology to accurately help me do what you do?”

I slowly shake my head with a smile, “Ummmm, I don’t think so.”

The reply, always, “Me neither; I just wanted to know.”  I am surprised how often this conversation evolves.

Another conversation evolves with court reporters and students while I coach and tutor, help students and professionals prep for national and state written court reporting examinations with Purple Books.  I am repeatedly asked, “What are you listening to?”

When I inquire why this is being asked, I hear, “You are very quiet when I speak. Do you have your computer on?  Are you doing something else?  Do you have music playing?” I am surprised how often I hear these words.

I reply, “When I work – court, depo or CART – I am listening.  When I am teaching, coaching, I am listening.  This is what we do well. My computer is not on, so I may focus. There’s no music.”

Then I pause for the follow-up, which is sure to follow:  “What do you have in the background? Fish tank?  Fountain?  What do you have for sound?”

I reply, “Silence.  I have birdfeeders outside. Truly, that’s it.”

Individuals with severe hearing loss (there are degrees) or profound deafness may not have sound.

Silence is powerful.

Is that one reason we are comforted walking into church? Close church doors, and you may not hear external sounds.  Open those doors, and the world instantly changes.

When people arrive at my office or home often silence is a topic.  Adults pause, “What is that?  No sound?  It’s so silent.  I can’t do that in my world or home.”

And some add, “I hate to leave; it’s peaceful, quiet here.

Teens comment, “What?  No TV, music?  What’s up with that? It’s too quiet. Why?” Teens shrug, hands in the air, gesturing their thoughts on ‘no sound’.

Frequently, in the next sentence, individuals say, “I like it; it feels good” – or – they say the complete opposite, “I need something in the background; I could never do that.”  (There’s not much middle ground on this.)

Again, the topic of sound – or lack thereof – is introduced.

In 1993, when I opened my CART captioning “headquarters” within a sign interpreter’s business, I feng shui-ed my office to see if it would generate more revenue.

Hearing and deaf trolled through and parked in chairs, sharing, “It feels peaceful.”

Maybe having been surrounded by music and sound as a child and adult created an opportunity for my choice.

My mother, a special education elementary instructor (certified in two states) and music teacher with an associate’s degree in opera, plays approximately seven instruments.  She always played an instrument or brought one home to practice for class lessons.

Her mother, my grandmother, was a piano prodigy who formed her own orchestra in Corpus Christi, Texas.  Each musician had to play a minimum of four instruments. My grandmother was also a court stenographer.

I grew up with a lot of sound.  The day that astronauts landed on the moon, my family was traveling and camping in a pop-up tent trailer.  We were in El Paso, Texas.  My memory is brutally hot – no air conditioning or TV.

That day, my youngest brother, Kevin Drue, bought a (cheap) guitar.

In that heat El Paso (with no trees in sight), Kevin sat on a barbecue table.  I listened as he taught himself to play guitar in that unbelievable heat.

Several hours later Kevin was pretty darn good.

And I married a man who played guitar – a lot.

The younger generation?   Yes, music (and video games) are played – a lot.

Often court reporters have had music lessons prior to entering our profession. This talent can be a plus for students.

Walking into stores now, typically music is now blaring.  Studies reveal that people shop longer (with the air conditioning cranked up – even in cooler weather) when music is heard.

While reading e-mails today as I finished this article on sound, I read that several sign interpreting friends were commenting about a new, just-released CD they are purchasing.

One deaf friend wrote, “What is it?  Country?  Rock?  ‘Sounds’ good!  Ha-ha.”

Silence, in my opinion, is powerful. This is a conversation I have had with many friends who cannot hear sounds.  (Watching – actually staring at – people who “sign” is considered to be eavesdropping as shared with me by the deaf community.) Friends, of all ages who are Deaf, deaf, oral deaf, are my teachers on the subject of sound.

Court reporters, CART captioners, students and instructors are accustomed to listening to rapid-fire, back-to-back words in talk-over conversations.

Often we think, “When are ‘they’ going to inhale?  How long can this pace continue?”

We know people are talking faster in depositions, court, and on TV.  The subject has been documented.

As we round the corner for holidays, adding tasks to busy schedules, I want to remind you to listen to simple silence.  

The seed I am planting here – silence – as gifted by my deaf friends is “hearing the sound of sound.”  I seek to resonate this moment within you.  This is my simple silent wish.

—- 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.

07 Apr 2020

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

She Never Speaks; She Spoke To You; Why Can’t She Just Learn English? She’s ‘only’ Deaf

She Never Speaks; She Spoke To You; Why Can’t She Just Learn English?  She’s ‘only’ Deaf

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

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

One morning in June, I got an early start. The store was near empty. I had me a 2007 Christmas gift certificate. My mission: new dish towels. I went to the kitchen area. This was easier than I thought.

Avoiding clearance racks, I saw the perfect T-shirt on a shelf. I debated — must I? Ahead of schedule I stepped to my left just to look. I spotted a woman who had her head down and was folding a mountain of clothes scattered over a metal table. And I’m talking marine-inspection folding.

The woman looked up; I smiled politely. She nodded and continued folding. I paused long and deliberately before I decided to see if she was the person I thought she might be.

With one motion I made a gesture  that often -only Deaf recognize. (It works very well, folks, Big D.) She tilted her head and smiled. Then her eyes sparkled. She did a small dance, head down, hands high in the air, before launching herself over that table to me.

I have not seen Stephie in ten years. Stephie is deaf, lives within the Big D-Deaf world.

I shook out my hands, signing, “Need put down purse. Signing rusty.” Placing my purse, towels on the table, planting my feet on the floor, standing tall, shoulders back, I began to (silently) talk with Stephie.

When I paused to sign or fingerspell, she signed with me, waiting while I struggled or correcting me (so very nice) as needed. This woman, who does not speak, began to laugh. Signing, she began to voice (words) and have sudden outbursts of sounds (words).

As I turned, I spotted employees watching. Customers approached, smiled at me (but not us), and then turned away. I asked Stephie if she might get in trouble for speaking to me. She laughed, “Nope.”

I asked if anyone in the store spoke or signed to her. “No,” she replied.

I asked how she communicates with her co-workers. Only her manager does – and only as needed. Then he ‘writes’ details on a small pad. I asked how she communicates with customers.

Stephie said that she tries to help, but “customers turn away, not responding.”

I winced. But Stephie beamed, stroking my face and hand, “I found you!”

In my rush that morning, I did not put on my wedding ring. She knows my husband from the years he was my “roadie” (his term) every Sunday when I CARTed to St. Frances Di Paola’s large screen for the Deaf mass. Stephie reached for my ringless hand, holding my ringless finger.

She shrugged and with hands in the air, she voiced loudly, “Sorry. It happens.”

I doubled over with laughter. Stephie then voiced, “Oops.”

This Deaf community is tight. When a hearing person is embraced into the Deaf world, it is an honor. In 1993, an elder within the Deaf community, gifted me with a sign name and named me “Our Token Hearing Girl” sharing my CART skills, learning from their culture. Oh, we have funny moments and memories.

Our conversation lasted 20 minutes. Now I was late. We exchanged information.

I signed, “Late. Must go.” She understood. Good-bye lasted 10 minutes with hugs, she touching my arm, my hand.

One employee who watched Stephie and I pointed to her register. I’m still holding only dish towels. Easy, right?

Anna looks like Priscilla Presley, early 1960s. She takes my towels and said, “She spoke to you.”

I blinked and looked at her hair and eye makeup.

Anna, “She spoke to you.”

I smiled, “We’re old friends.”

Anna paused, then leaned on her register, “She spoke to you. I heard her. She said words ‘to’ you.”

I smiled, “Stephie’s deaf. She communicates with sign language. How much do I owe?”

Anna, “She never speaks; she spoke to you. I don’t understand her. I’d like to …”

I almost put my forehead on that register counter. I’m thinking, “Please, God, don’t let this be a mini-deaf sensitivity seminar. I need to head to my office. I have court reporters and court reporting students confirmed for tutoring this morning and afternoon. Peter Rabbit here must run.”

Anna whispered, “You spoke to her. She understood you. She ‘heard’ you. How does that happen?”

I exhaled slowly without sighing. I looked to the people behind me and asked, “Anyone in a hurry?”

Each person (a first) shook their head.

Customers replied, “I have all the time in the world.”

“I’ve always wanted to learn about sign language — those deaf mutes.”

When I looked up — as I knew would be — Stephie watched, head down. She understood. I made eye contact with Stephie and smiled.

I slowly began my mini-seminar. “Stephie is an intelligent woman to work in a place where no one speaks her language – or will try.”

Anna asked, “But why do her words come up in wrong places?”

Me, “Well, Anna, her language ASL, American Sign Language, is a conceptual language created by hearing people long ago in France.”

Anna, “Why can’t she read lips? She stays to herself. She seems nice.”

I asked, “Has anyone here ever sat with her in the break room?” Anna shook her head. “Stephie wants to communicate,” I said.


Anna earnestly, “But sometimes her words don’t sound like English, yet you understood what she was saying. I watched. You two had a real conversation. Some words are louder than they should be. Can’t she just learn English?”

I winced. Calmly, I took a deep breath, shared tips about Big D, Deaf, sign language. “Stephie does know English. Her first language is ASL.”

Placing my towels in a store bag, I asked for the total. Customers leaned forward to listen when Anna whispered, “I wish I was brave enough to do what you did with her.”

Slowly counting to myself, I softly replied, “Start with one word. When you see her on break, coming into work or leaving, start with one word.”

I showed Anna several signs (and a few funny slang signs) to encourage and motivate her. I added, “And it’s fun.”

Anna finally totaled those dang towels and said, “Thank you for helping deaf people and for taking time to help us – who wish we could understand them.”

Me, “But you can.”

Anna, “No, no, I wish I could, but I can’t. Thank you for helping me and for helping us to understand.”

With one quick, shy motion, Anna raced around the counter and hugged me. Then she sprinted back to her register. Customers then thanked me “for helping those people.” I avoided sighing.

 

I closed the seminar, “Deaf have a wonderful culture with a beautiful language. We must learn from each other.”

I slowly looked down the aisle; I knew she was watching. Stephie nodded. She understood. I signed good-bye to Anna. Overhand I signed (the personal) “I love you” to Stephie. I took my towels and departed with my head down. I wondered what I could have or should have said to her coworkers to have had a more positive result.

Then a large UPS truck flew past me. Stopping on a dime, the driver leaned out the doorless truck and waved overhand. I blinked. Last year, he was stung by a bee at his previous delivery. He’s allergic to bees. After I signed for my delivery I treated his neck ‘timing’ to see if his bee reaction would need hospitalization.

While watching this UPS shorts-wearing dude with dark eyeglasses, energetically waving overhand to me, I thought about Anna and how wonderful it was to have found Stephie. I thanked God for life’s grand memory-moments.

Then like the little Peter Rabbit, this bunny went back to her world – thankful for Stephie’s friendship and her laughter that morning.

I phoned the sign interpreter Stephie requested, sharing Stephie’s message.

 

My friend howled with laughter, “Dish towels with a 2007 Christmas certificate? Oh, Monette, you need to shop for better things. What ya doing tomorrow? Let’s meet there, see Stephie. Let’s go have us some real fun over there.”

     Perhaps we did; perhaps we did. Stephie and I wish Happy Holidays to each of you and your families.

—-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.

18 Mar 2020

Yes We Can, Yes We Did; You No Worry, My Husband, You Okay, Signed Big D -Deaf Lady in Dark Parking Lot, You Safe

Yes We Can, Yes We Did; You No Worry, My Husband, You Okay, Signed Big D -Deaf Lady in Dark Parking Lot, You Safe

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

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Recently I was out of state on business far from home when I encountered another “memory moment” (deaf term) that will stay with me. I work as a court reporter, court reporting instructor, tutor and coach. Of this I know to be true: if more of us could truly hear and see what’s around us, we would change the world as we know it – one person, one “moment” at a time. Yes, we can, and yes, we did.

After a long day, early evening, I stopped at a hardware store. I needed a few items.

On a long (single) line in the busy store with my cart, I heard a familiar sound.

I tilted my chin up.

“Ahhhhahh,” a woman was pointing a man to another counter. I blinked knowingly. I smiled, she looked away.

I then debated: Could I? Should I? The line wasn’t moving as I leaned on my cart.

I smiled, quickly gestured upwards with the flick of my wrist – and waited. She looked up. Again I smiled.

We looked at each other for a few seconds before I thought, “Oh, what the heck.” I began to sign (ASL) to her.

She watched and did not respond, but she was smiling. I signed that I have worked with deaf people in Texas. I had not signed in a while: “My sign stinky now.” Her smile beamed from ear to ear. She started signing so quickly, I had to remember the first sign I learned: “Slow down.”

My line barely moved toward the cashier. She and I were soon signing (ASL, American Sign Language) and communicating.

Children stopped complaining, whining about standing on line in the hardware store.

Adults looked stunned, clearly staring, as we laughed, spelled, signed. I had a great time; it felt good to sign again! As I approached the cashier, she nodded a brief good-bye and went back to work.

The cashier smiled. I asked if many deaf people worked there. “No, her husband works here.”

I asked the (hearing) cashier if there were interpreters.

“Nope, that lady worked ‘at a deaf place’ and used to come to the store every evening. The boss would say: You don’t have a job. He wasn’t going to pay her. But she continued to show up each night. Soon she began counting the money in each register, and she was very good at it. The owner hired the lady.”

I said, “You know, she’s reading lips, communicating with others; no one’s interpreting for her. She’s very smart. Trust me.”

As I left, I turned and waved good-bye to the deaf lady. The boss arrived at her register with more money, she smiled, I nodded … off I went … or so I thought.

My car would not start. The lights turned on, but not the engine.

It was now dark; I was in an unfamiliar city and stores were closing.

I strolled back into that store, flicked my wrist and signed, “Me car broke.”

The lady immediately signed to her husband, who sprinted out to my car.

Four men who worked with the couple appeared.

One man moved his truck and popped our hoods to “jump” the battery.

No one spoke to me; they were busy.

Within minutes, six men were in and out of my car: “What the hell’s this? What does this go to?”

They popped fuse boxes, flipped switches. I was stunned.

When I looked up, the deaf lady was signing, “You no worry. My husband. You OK.”

The men fervently worked; I turned my back on my car. It was too painful to watch and no one was answering my questions; they were busy.

In the dark parking lot, she and I signed and signed and signed, laughing, enjoying the nice breezes.

When my car was “fixed,” I was diagnosed with a neutral safety-switch problem. (Oh?) Then, each man who had worked on my car quickly vanished into the dark.

I yelled “thanks” to their backs as they silently left.

As I turned to get into my car, the husband asked, “Do you have someplace to stay tonight?” I paused. He asked again.

Standing under the street lamp, alone, stores closed, I hesitated.

Then I heard the deaf lady yelling, signing, “You OK. He my husband. You safe.”

I laughed, answered his questions, and we signed for the lady, his wife.

She then signed, “Firestone. You go tomorrow.”

I started to think this would make a great SNL, Saturday Night Live, skit clip.

She’s standing next to her car four spots away, signing to me.

Her husband is next to me signing into the air, so she can “hear,” and I’m trying to remember all the signs my rusty fingers used to know.

I asked, “What are your names?”

His reply, “Go to Firestone. Tell them Mike and the deaf lady sent you.”

“What is her name?” I asked.

He said, “They just know her as the deaf lady. They’ll know who you mean.”

The third time, I asked slowly, “What is her name? What do ‘you’ call her?”

He smiled and said, “I’m Mike. She’s Millie. We work at Johnny’s.” And he continued to sign (interpret) our conversation.

I signed up into the air, “Nice meet you, Millie.”

She tapped her heart, “You not worry. Go Firestone. You OK.”

I began to giggle when I looked around. People were sitting in their cars in the dark, motionless, viewing this entire scene.

Since my car engine was running, I was afraid to turn it off. Mike continued to stay with me, smiling.

Then I asked Mike what I had signed to Millie in the store.

Earlier I’d asked, “Do you watch TV?” She had said that she kept busy. Mike said, “She doesn’t like TV.”

I signed into the air, “Millie’s Big D. Signing her first language. She’s having trouble viewing captioning because too fast. Practice, reading improves.”

Mike agreed that was the reason she did not watch television. “She struggles with reading captions.”

I stopped signing to concentrate and concisely explain how broadcast captioners and CART providers help deaf and hard-of-hearing children and adults.

I discussed the work I’d shared with many deaf and HOH (hard-of-hearing) groups and a deaf mass since 1993.

I signed across the parking lot, “You watch TV. Captioners help you, better reading.”

Finally, Millie said, “Yes, I watch. I will. Promise. Yes, I can.”

As I left, I thanked God for my new friends and wondered why the only place my car had broken down in 17 years was somewhere I’d just had fun and shared with a new deaf friend.

Mike and Millie at Johnny’s … if only “you” could sign, hear, and see, you would shift.

I’m writing about this, yes, we can, and yes, we did because the reactions of court reporters and friends have been interesting.

All deposition court reporters and officials asked, “Why didn’t you just call a tow truck?

The CART captioners and sign interpreters said, “Yeah, I get it.”

Another confirmation, to me, of the differences in our consumers and possibly future clients.

I know Mike and Millie will watch captioning.

If you could sign, hear and see, you too could feel that your skills are wonderful.

Our court reporting and CART captioning profession is a gift to others. We’re not reminded often enough … but my heart knows. It feels so right “in the moment” to communicate, help, sign and laugh.

Mike and Millie confirmed my life path (again); another “sign” from the universe.

Come and join us. It’s fun. You’ll meet many people. They’ll appear anywhere during the day, the night, even in a hardware store.

Mike, Millie and I agree … yes, we can. Yes, we can sign, hear and see together as one.

Each time a deaf person taps his or her heart and smiles at me, I have another “memory moment.” 

That memory moment is mine to keep forever.

Do you ever wish you could have these moments? Trust me: yes, you can. Yes, we can.

 

— 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.

15 Mar 2020

‘Switched At Birth’ and Monette’s CART Captioning

Switched At Birth And Monette’s CART Captioning

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

Two teenagers discover that they were switched at birth while researching a school assignment. Genetic testing is completed when the students learn “blood types” and when the high school students learn that they do not match their family.

Marlee Matlin plays a basketball coach and guidance counselor in a deaf school.

She communicates through sign language and (some) voicing. Marlee was raised Big D (Deaf) using sign as her only communication. She did not speak until 1986 when she appeared in “Children Of A Lesser God.”

I remember when Marlee made the choice to learn to speak. I stayed “quiet” during all Deaf/sign interpreter conversations as I watched from my “hearing” chair within the Deaf community where I have been embraced.

I have also CARTed many heated discussions to large screens about her choice – many heated discussions by Deaf and from sign interpreters.

Marlee’s TV character, Melody Bledsoe, has a deaf teen in the show.

One teen, actor Sean Berdy, is Deaf.

The character, Emmett, signs ASL, American Sign Language, speaks a little, and is expanding a relationship with a “hearing” teen.

When Emmett enrolls in “voice class” another (big) storyline is developed.

Sean is a role model within the Deaf community. Deaf blogs detail Sean’s “nuances” as Sean’s signs are unique to Sean. Blogs by deaf teens note that Sean’s “cool signs” display subtleties that voicing cannot share. (Long ago, I learned that sign language is able to communicate “much more than just words.”)

One teen, actress Katie Leclerc, has Meniere’s (inner ear disease) and speaks as Daphne Vasquez. Many Deaf and HOH, Hard of Hearing, individuals live with Meniere’s. This teen makes choices in her role as Daphne that are unique to her character.

One parent left a wife and small child when he had a DNA test, which confirmed the daughter was not his – long before the high school blood type assignment.

Have I piqued your interest yet?

Switched At Birth began as a one-hour show. It was such a success that ABCFM, ABC Family network, expanded the show to 22 episodes, August 1, 2011. The show continues to develop with storylines and character development that is rich and very true to the nuances within each culture – deaf, hard-of-hearing, oral deaf, and hearing choices.

If you desire to step into the Little D (typically sign language and mainstreamed with some voicing) and Big D (typically sign language and no voicing) culture, this is a wonderful opportunity.

The show has hit sensitive areas. I admire their truths.

Switched At Birth does not duck sensitive areas and episodes are powerful.

Deaf blogs discuss why Deaf actors are “voicing” words.

They write that if Deaf individuals were signing, their voice (“voice-box” is the term used by Deaf and interpreters) “would be off” (turned off), and no one would hear.

They ask: “Why do Deaf actors need to sign and voice? We don’t.”

Open captions in large white font are displayed when signs are used within scenes where words are not spoken. Yes, the show is closed captioned.

In 1993 I was accepted into San Antonio’s Big D world. What I have learned remains timeless.

In the trench, I was taught cultural differences and (im)possibilities by Deaf, deaf, oral deaf, early deafened, late deafened, and by hard of hearing.

It is an honor to be accepted into the Big D world if you are hearing, do not have a deaf family member and are not a sign interpreter.

Months after CARTing the weekly mass at St. Francesco Di Paola church, one day deaf friends insisted “you must have a sign.” A vote was called.

I was voted “in” on the church steps within Piazza Italia next to the Christopher Columbus Knights of Columbus historic building.

“You have earned this,” I was told.

A “sign name” must be given/gifted by a deaf person.

A hearing person does not create their own sign name. Never. Never.

Sign interpreters frequently commented that I would never, never, never be given a sign as an outsider. Never.

I remember I smiled each time and softly shared that I would earn my name; I would be accepted.

The terps, interpreters, vehemently disagreed.

Yet in 1993, I stayed in the saddle fascinated by their world, their culture, as I CARTed the mass dedicated to deaf and Deaf culture with interpreters and priests who signed.

While CARTing on Sundays I continued to teach, and to CART and caption local, state, and national events in the trench – often next to sign interpreters.

The Sunday my friends insisted “you must have a name” a respected, wise elder was called to the church steps.

Signs for names are unique to each person (personality, facial features, work).

“She will give you a name! This is our thanking you. Come! Stand here! Come!”

Quietly, I stood hands folded, head down, and waited while this wise lady approached.

Interpreters approached to sign and Deaf gathered to “listen.”

The wise elder touched her chin, tipped her head upward. She folded her arms, standing pensive for approximately two minutes.

Everyone was quiet.

I remember listening to the many birds in the trees overhead waiting for my Deaf friends to gift me my sign name.

Then the wise elder “declared my sign with two versions” (it is unique to have two sign names, yet if gifted by Big D, it is so).

Whenever I sign my “name sign” (two names) Deaf and interpreters always know it was gifted.

Traveling the United States, when I show my sign name, the two versions, initially, people have a startled reaction.

“Two? You have two? Wow.”

When I explain why I have two sign names as explained to me by the wise elder while she proclaimed my signs, each person always laughs and says, “Ahhhhh, I understand now.”

And I learned boundaries after I stepped over many during my learning curve. (Indeed.)

Deaf adults and teens taught me about acceptance, lack of acceptance, ignorance, and the very frequent comment from hearing individuals, “I knew a deaf person once.”

Multiple times when I was out with Deaf friends they insisted I “be deaf.”

No voicing. Zip.

When I was “the hearing person” people spoke only to me and not to the Deaf people.

“What do they want to eat? What do they want to drink?”

I would sigh and reply each time, “They’re deaf. Why don’t ‘you’ ask them?”

And when hearing people spoke to Deaf individuals – far too many hearing would speak slowly and (over)pronounce every syllable with exacting diligence.

My deaf friends and interpreters were always insulted. Always.

When I was “be deaf” (their term) for the event or the meal, I was able to experience the world from their seat, from their ears. Eye-opening memories are still fresh.

Once accepted into the Deaf world they shared true moments with me when their “Deaf hands” were tied together to prevent students from communicating and as punishment in (public and private) school.

Deaf who were enrolled in schools where oral communication was the first mode of communication (signing often was not permitted) shared stories that still raise my eyebrows.

They insisted I CART the true stories and “put our words into your computer, so you know our world. We want you to know!”

And Deaf discussed not receiving textbooks in mainstream schools “since the teachers knew – and told us – we would not do well on tests or graduate! The teachers that told us those words did not sign. They were not speaking our words, our language.”

A deaf person who marries a sign interpreter may experience discrimination.

A sign interpreter who marries a deaf person will “always have our hands working just so ‘you’ can hear, and that’s not fair to us!”

A Deaf person who signs, does not voice and dates or marries a deaf (little D) person who voices and signs may experience discrimination.

A Big D or Little D person who marries a hearing person?

That is a whole nuther topic. A big whole nuther topic.

Once I was welcome to ask my questions, I did.

Adults wiped crocodile tears and insisted that if I wanted to be part of their world I needed to know their truth.

Until I was able to understand basic signs and to understand fingerspelling as their “token hearing girl” the moments were pure Deaf.

Alone, I drove to a Deaf Block Party just as the local animal shelter arrived with deaf dogs that “will be put down if you don’t adopt them.” This is common, I learned.

Yes, the deaf dogs at the deaf block party found new homes that night.

As I walked alone for long periods of time, finally an interpreter approached, “You have got to be dumber than dirt to want to go through all this. Just tell me why you really are here.”

Oh, yes, she did.

I shared my reason for attending and for wanting inclusion.

She listened and asked a few questions. Any deaf in your family? Any interpreters in your family? None? And you really want to do this because … (reason I shared…)

I nodded watching the balloons and colorful ribbons that were tied to the street lights that night.

Standing with her left hand on her hip, this sign interpreter quickly made a sweeping motion with her right hand.

Deaf approached. I remained quiet. I knew something important had just happened.

Then she said, “OK. Now you’re in.” I remember raising my eyebrows.

Several Deaf crossed the street to hug me, and immediately took me by the hand into the throng of people, laughing, signing, and singing.

Oh, and they played practical jokes while I was an outsider. Yes, they did.

Later, at Deaf camp (a weekend retreat in the Hill Country) I remember when they wanted “something” (I could not understand the signs and no one would voice the words for me) late one night around a campfire.

Deaf sat with flashlights around the huge campfire.

When a person spoke, signed, each would hold the flashlight toward their face with the light on.

Then the person who signed would point their flashlight down.

When a person responded that person would turn their flashlight toward their own face while they signed.

Holding the flashlight in one hand and signing with two hands while speaking was a first for me.

Fascinated, I sat on the top of the hill with the large group. There was no electricity. I was chilled to the bone. I sat on a cold, hard rock watching and listening.

Deaf voiced, to me, “We need ….” and gestured wildly to me – motioning off into the dark.

I remember wincing a lot before they stood and pointed to the brush over and over. “We need …”

And off I went – alone.

Each time I came back alone, more confused with what I was looking for, their laughter was louder and louder.

Yet while they motioned for me to go “look for …” I did. I sure did.

Only later did I learn (after many trips up and down the hill that had no path) that what I was “to go find” was a UFO. Indeed.

I got ’em back.

The next day there was a time set aside for private confessions with the signing priest.

I told them that I “had” to CART their confessions if they wanted confession that evening.

They were so proud of me for “getting us back – and we believed you for hours, too!”

The priest “outed” me as he giggled and agreed that we were all becoming a team together.

That night, I agreed that I would not CART their confessions if they would agree not to send me off into the dark brush looking for anything ever again. We had us a deal.

My favorite memory of the confession with the signing priest?

I had not planned to participate.

When everyone was finished he came out of the room and looked to me. I smiled and ever so slowly shook my head.

The priest smiled and motioned to me. He pointed to the empty room and he went in.

My friends were insistent that I “You have to go. Go. GO!”

When I did go in, two chairs were turned to face each other in the middle of the large room.

This signing priest, smiled, and gestured to the chair facing him.

I remember pausing for a moment. He said, “The lights have to be turned on so we can see the signs and communicate. This is how all Deaf go to confession.”

I said, “This room has more lights than high noon.”

When I sat in the chair facing him there was a long, awkward silence.

He paused and said, “I want to ask you something. May I?” I nodded.

Then the dear man asked, “How does that machine work?”

I threw my head back and laughed and laughed. The question we always “get.”

He said, “No! really! How does it work? I am fascinated by it and what you do.”

I sighed, and gave him a mini-version of the machine, theory, and our work.

He said, “Fascinating! Now tell me about …”

I asked if there was a time limit by saying, “Surely there must be someone else who needs to meet with you.”

He laughed, “No, you’re the last. I wanted to speak to you last, so I could have this conversation.”

Me, “Great.” He laughed and then asked me many, many, many questions.

About twenty-five minutes later we were both laughing and enjoying our “confessional” moment.

I said, “The others are going to wonder … Oh, by the way, should I participate in confession now?”

The priest again laughed. “No, you are good. Let’s not tell the others, though. I have thoroughly enjoyed chatting with you, listening, learning, and sharing. I thank you.”

We stood and he hugged me.

I remember I said, “Well, this is the most unusual confession in my life – to include the one time in St. Peters in the Vatican where the man ‘heard’ my confession, and then I learned that he did not understand English. I will always remember this confession – that wasn’t a confession at all – with you.”

When we opened the door, everyone (and I mean every-one) was standing there.

I heard, “Wow! You must have been BAD! You were in there forever!!!!”

I looked to the priest. He silent as a lamb, sweet smile on his face.

I said, “No, it wasn’t really like that …” My Deaf friends became more insistent “how bad you were to have been in there that long.”

Another Deaf-moment memory (my term) is the evening I entered a hotel lobby and a Deaf person was playing the piano.

Hotel guests were shocked at how “bad” (their word) the piano player was.

I unpacked my CART equipment, put my hands at my side, and simply walked away. I knew better than to become involved — and it was fun to watch.

I will always remember the Deaf adults who casually leaned on that huge, sparkling, black piano to feel the sound and vibration from the piano notes.

Later, they said, “Wow. ‘That’ was bad! And no one would say a word!? Not one hearing person! Ha! Ha! Ha! And for once they didn’t know we were Deaf. That was Great!”

The television show “Switched At Birth” shares factual events that occur within families, at work, in school, and while dating. A cast member is a soldier as many current events are front and center.

Switched At Birth accurately portrays subtle moments and explores wide-open topics that splits — and unites families, friends, acquaintances, and strangers.

The last scene from a January 2012 episode ended with Emmett responding to a police officer speaking to Emmett in Emmett’s garage. The scene ended with Emmett facedown in handcuffs.

Sadly, this is common. Police officers pull over cars with Deaf and interpreters who are signing.

Many officers do not have deaf sensitivity training. Incidents do result that would be different if the occupants of the vehicle were not signing. (This is well documented.)

While traveling to Deaf camp in 1993, the church van was pulled over.

When I learned why they were late and gasped, everyone said, “IT happens ‘all’ the time! Police think we’re drunk and pull us over. Then we have to go through all the drunk tests with people who don’t let us sign and will not call interpreters and do not understand why we have to keep looking at them! They want us to turn around, and we can’t!”

Deaf adults also shared that when police arrive at residents officers may not ring the doorbell. If police knock, Deaf will not hear and may rely on their assistive doorbell.

San Antonio’s Police Department began a campaign to request Deaf to register with SAPD, so they would have a deaf listing.

The Deaf, as explained to me, absolutely did not want to register to be “different” on “another list.”

One oral deaf friend who reads lips (and refuses to learn sign language) shared how his hotel door was “broken down” by firemen who threw him over their shoulder with a blanket, and carried him down stairs within a burning hotel. (The fire alarm did not work in his room; he always registers as deaf.)

CART, captioning, and the ADA have changed deaf and HOH communities.

Court reporters and sign interpreters are serving individuals with mandated equal access.

Yet when sign language is not the person’s first language, we may not be the best “equal access.”

The events, stories, plots, and drama in Switched At Birth come from the perspective of Deaf and hearing teens and their families that are played out in the school events, social gatherings, and within private moments in the series.

A request has been made by cochlear implant teens to include implant stories.

Recently, there was a reference to CART in the classroom. Maybe ABCFM will include a CART provider or display captioning?

Maybe.

Watch. The show truly is wonderful family entertainment.  After you watch, let me know what you think.

Switched At Birth episodes contains multiple venues wherein we can learn together, and we are “equal” moving forward together.

—-  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.

28 Jan 2020

The Final Frontier: Nolo Contendere, Guilty, Part III of III

The Final Frontier: Nolo Contendere, Guilty, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
September 27, 2013

Part I and II began: Court reporters are a disciplined breed. This is reinforced as I move through my professional and personal world.

“The final frontier” is a metaphor. I was encouraged to write this as I trolled this topic past professionals, court reporters, broadcast captioners, CART providers, instructors, and students that I am tutoring and coaching. Guilty.

Court reporters listen with laser focus. I have listened to individuals, doctors, speak – a lot.

When specialists have finished long sentences, often I am asked “Have any questions?”

Often, I shake my head. When I am asked why I don’t have any questions I have replied, “The good news is that the patient does not have the diagnosis that you thought was causing the problem. The bad news is that you don’t know what’s causing the problem.”

Not often, the specialist asks, “How’d you do that?”

Rarely, will I share, “Degree in listening.”

Often, I reply, “I listened.” …

Part II: … Me: “No can do. Court reporter. Only time I see word ‘arrested,’ is with work. ‘Patient arrested’ … Not signing until defined.”

EMT: “Your mother arrested on the table. You’re not supposed to know. We’re not allowed to tell you. You need to sign. We must transport now; she needs isolation.” (Code for: “The hospital’s discharge policy was at 5:00 today, and it’s past 5:00 now.)

My court reporter discipline, in my opinion, appeared again. Guilty.

I will not be hurried when asked to sign documents. I quietly insist on reading every line…

Part III of III:

The final frontier involves so many court reporters, CART providers, captioners, and students who share that they will not sign anything without reading every line, too. They insist on a copy of everything they sign, too. When they read documents to sign, everyone in the room sighs – while they calmly read, too. Discipline, yes. Guilty.

A high-profile official court reporter. “I took three hours to read mortgage papers. I took five hours signing a 15-year mortgage. When I bought a car on 24 installments, the dealer closed at 8 p.m. I left at 9:30 p.m. It drives my family crazy.” Nolo contendere.

We are not rattled when we are asking for information at work or at home, regarding a family member and advancing our skills. We listen.

We have no shortcuts to listening.

When people need events preserved, we are there. Always present. Always listening. Guilty as charged.

Update: The cardiologist, after listening to me (I measured each word), said, “She really slipped through the cracks.”

Ah, a leader! I sat tall, softly asked, “Will you be Top Dog? I want all the other dogs to report to you. Is this doable?”

Wearing surgical scrubs (with booties), he said, “Absolutely! I’ll ensure I’m faxed daily details. I’ll write orders for it.” I almost hugged the man.

When transport returned my mom to her room, I watched the scampering with individuals who said, “We sent over the wrong paperwork again? And he wants what? Daily?”

Softly, I said, “That man is now Top Dog. Thank you for making this possible.”

The final frontier. I have now have Top Dog. This is our discipline. I am off the sidelines. I asked a doctor to be Village Chief to help with my dad when I saw Dad’s road turning (Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken”). My Village Chief then was HOH (hard of hearing); we worked as a team. (In September 2011 I wrote an article for my column, “My Village Chief is HOH.”)

Now I have Top Dog to help my mom. Yes, Mom does have God as a roommate. Guilty. The final frontier necessitates continued attention to detail, continued focus, and much listening. Guilty without an explanation.

The day after submitting this article for my “Journal of Court Reporting” column, a “care nurse” phoned to schedule a meeting.

Me: “Sure. I request a list of all Mom’s diagnoses and meds.”

Voice pitched, she was off to the races. When she refused to give me this, I listened, believing I was not going to win this battle – on the phone. I know that I am entitled to this information by law and chose not to “word” engage with her.

She ended with, “This meeting is just for you to come and listen. It is not for chit-chat.” (Code for: “We have to meet with you approximately every 60 to 90 days per Medicare and our licensing.”)

We had our meeting. The “care nurse” was not present. At the end, with my copy of meds and diagnoses that I had requested on the phone, they asked me – oh, yes, they did – to sign a document.

Me in realtime: “I want a copy.”

Multiple people: “It’s for our files. Sign here (indicating).”

I leaned in, “If I sign, I get a copy.”

They actually said, “That’s okay, then.”

In a swift poker move, I put my hand on it, pulled the document toward me.

Court reporter here read each line with speed-reading skills. Then I lifted my hand. I stood, departed document-less knowing that they remain signature-less. Nolo Contendere.

Part I of III is posted September 5, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com
Part II of III is posted September 16, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com
Part III of III is posted September 27, 2013, 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.

27 Sep 2013

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects, Part III of III

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
August 11, 2013

Part I and II began: The nurse, RN, was speaking to me about my mother’s recent ICU, intensive care unit, discharge when overhead speakers broadcast a doctor’s page. He cupped one hand over the back of each ear. I watched, sans comment.

I am witnessing many medical professionals with hearing loss…

He said softly, “Don’t tell anyone. I have hearing loss.”

I nodded, “I see that you have coping skills to assist you.”

“You noticed?” he replied. Me, “Yes, sir. Due to my work.”

Mom tells everyone, every shift, “My daughter is a court reporter, a teacher, and she’s an author …”

I was prepared to not pursue this topic. However, I find 99 percent of people who have hearing loss do want to detail their world with me. I listen, humbled, learning from each.

He said, “Most people don’t notice. My wife’s worse! She’s the one I worry about. I’ll tell you tomorrow, okay?” I nodded.

We returned to our task – “required gowning with gloves and mask in the hall before entering.”

He asked how I was familiar with hearing loss. I shared “court reporter, CART provider, captioner, consultant.”

This nurse said, “My wife and children have serious issues. I just have hearing loss. But I know what I want before I lose my hearing.”

“My wife has glaucoma. When she was a teen she took glaucoma medicine to decrease her eye pressure. The medicine also decreases inner ear pressure and damages nerves. Her hearing loss now is from medicine long ago. What’s worse than that?”

“Each generation then has hearing loss from the parent’s medicine.”

My eyes were as big as saucers as I listened to this man talk about the glaucoma medicine and generational effects.

He summed it up, “Tomorrow I’ll tell you what I want. I probably won’t get it. Yet I have to have hopes. Right?”

The next day, this nurse sprang from his chair as I entered to visit Mom isolated with MRSA, pseudomonosis, and additional ICU sterile lung bacteria.

“I’ve been waiting for you. I told my wife about you and court reporters. We know all about your work. We thank you and your profession for helping us. Once I tell you what I really want, could you tell me how to help my 12-year old?” I nodded.

I whipped out my iPad, asked permission to write notes.

He said, “Sure! Let’s go look at the latest and greatest. It’s not well known, but it could be once the price comes down. And with glaucoma patients and their children’s children – and their children – they’re all going to need your help.”

Part III of III

Since English is each son’s first language I shared about the Alexander Graham Bell Association. I shared AGB techniques. Children work with balloons voicing sounds. Balloons bounce and have specific reactions to vocal sounds and exhalations of breath. Older children (and adults) often work with lit candles. If the flame is extinguished, the exhalation was not appropriate for that sound.

“Fascinating!,” he said.

Now he took notes saying, “My wife insisted I ask you. Insisted!”

I detailed the Hearing Loss Association, HLA, and other groups. I shared that each association has chapters; chapters are wonderful resources for children and adults.

We shared information each time I visited Mom. The nurse expressed his gratitude for being able to share his dreams, his hopes with me, and said each time, “I have to help my wife and children before I help myself. It’s the right thing to do. I know my time is limited here on the floor.”

Looking left and right, he said, “I have problems with phones when there are overhead announcements. External noises are hard to work around. Yet I know if I get that titanium device before I have another hearing drop, I’ll be able to hear. I do not have the absolute fear of going blind and also losing my hearing. That is the fear, you know.”

I softly replied, “Yes, I know the deep fear for many deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals is to lose vision.”

This nurse truly enjoyed helping me learn about glaucoma patients who will then pass their decreased hearing down to their children – and then to their children.

He exacted a promise that I share. (Mom also told him I would write an article …)

He shook my hand, “Great! Now if I can get that electronic stethoscope – that’s what I call it – I can help others. I’ll do my darndest to help my family, myself, and to help others. Good deal, right?”

“And you promise to write about this? (I nodded.) Maybe I’ll get my titanium surgery when others know how important this is. And my wife and children need help, too. You promise?”

“Yes, dear,” I softly replied.

Then he quoted, verbatim, a lengthy Monty Python skit (with accents). The nurse bowed, “We’ve walked barbed wire fences together you and me.”

He sprinted down the hall.

Again, I was tired, cold, and hungry. I was charmed by this man’s energy, his hopes, and his goals. Mom’s overhead light went off (in isolation – not many rush to her room). And I headed back in to help Mom.

Suddenly, the gentleman called my name.

He put his hand over his heart and paused.

Watching him, slowly, I placed my hand over my heart.

Slowly, we nodded once in unison together, and exacted a moment together, bonding my promise to him.

And now I fulfill my promise sharing with each of you – together. We are together.

Part I is posted July 11, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com
Part II is posted July 28, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com
Part III is posted August 11, 2013, 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 & 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 (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 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.

11 Aug 2013

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects, Part II of III

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects, Part II of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
July 28, 2013

Part I began: The nurse, RN, was speaking to me about my mother’s recent ICU discharge when overhead speakers broadcast a doctor’s page. He cupped one hand over the back of each ear. I watched, sans comment.

I am witnessing many medical professionals with hearing loss…

He said softly, “Don’t tell anyone. I have hearing loss.”

I nodded, “I see that you have coping skills to assist you.”

“You noticed?” he replied.

Me, “Yes, sir. Due to my work.”

Mom tells everyone, every shift, “My daughter is a court reporter, a teacher, and she’s an author …”

I was prepared to not pursue this topic. However, I find 99 percent of people who have hearing loss do want to detail their world with me. I listen, humbled, learning from each.

He said, “Most people don’t notice. My wife’s worse! She’s the one I worry about. I’ll tell you tomorrow, okay?” I nodded.

We returned to our task – “required gowning with gloves and mask in the hall before entering.”

He asked how I was familiar with hearing loss. I shared “court reporter, CART provider, captioner, consultant.”

This nurse said, “My wife and children have serious issues. I just have hearing loss. But I know what I want before I lose my hearing.”

“My wife has glaucoma. When she was a teen she took glaucoma medicine to decrease her eye pressure. The medicine also decreases inner ear pressure and damages nerves. Her hearing loss now is from medicine long ago. What’s worse than that?”

“Each generation then has hearing loss from the parent’s medicine.”

Part II of III

My eyes were as big as saucers as I listened to this man talk about the glaucoma medicine and generational effects.

He summed it up, “Tomorrow I’ll tell you what I want. I probably won’t get it. Yet I have to have hopes. Right?”

The next day, this nurse sprang from his chair as I entered to visit Mom isolated with MRSA, pseudomonosis, and additional ICU sterile lung bacteria.

“I’ve been waiting for you. I told my wife about you and court reporters. We know all about your work. We thank you and your profession for helping us. Once I tell you what I really want, could you tell me how to help my 12-year old?” I nodded.

I whipped out my iPad, asked permission to write notes.

He said, “Sure! Let’s go look at the latest and greatest. It’s not well known, but it could be once the price comes down. And with glaucoma patients and their children’s children – and their children – they’re all going to need your help.”

We hunkered together and looked up “tympanoplasty.” The prostheses resembles a small earring. Hearing must be present.

He emphasized, “This is different than cochlear implants. It’s titanium. Implants require relearning sounds and have differing results. This titanium tympanoplasty device is shaped to fit into each ear. It originated in Germany.”

The nurse shared that his wife and children are not prostheses candidates due to their “glaucoma medicine-induced hearing loss” (each child has never had glaucoma, nor do they have the gene).

He shared, “Medical costs are $30,000; insurance doesn’t cover it – yet. But I could hear again with this. I’ve done my homework. Now I just have to find a doctor who will do the surgery and not want thirty grand,” he said tenderly.

Later that day, he found me in the hallway – staring at the floor – wearing the isolation gown – holding the required gloves, sans mask.

Now he held a notepad; he asked how he could help his family.

“One son already has problems. He’s been bullied. I taught him karate for discipline and confidence. His speech is now thick-tongued as pressure in his ears create hearing loss from his mother’s glaucoma medicine before he was born.”

Part I is posted July 11, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com
Part II is posted July 28, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com
Part III is posted August 11, 2013, 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 & 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 (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 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.

28 Jul 2013

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects, Part I of III

Titanium Technology and Glaucoma Effects
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
July 11, 2013

Part I of III

The nurse, RN, was speaking to me about my mother’s recent ICU discharge when overhead speakers broadcast a doctor’s page. He cupped one hand over the back of each ear. I watched, sans comment.

I am witnessing many medical professionals with hearing loss.

Yet these moments are far more frequent than years ago – especially during the past two years deep in the medical trenches as I viewed my father’s care prior to his death.

Perhaps it is my antenna as I view Mom’s challenges to “avoid death’s door” (a termed given to Mom) wherein I see many people now working with hearing loss.

He said softly, “Don’t tell anyone. I have hearing loss.”

I nodded, “I see that you have coping skills to assist you.”

“You noticed?” he replied.

Me, “Yes, sir. Due to my work.”

Mom tells everyone, every shift, “My daughter is a court reporter, a teacher, and she’s an author …”

I simply bow my head. On many occasions I have been so happy Mom is alive that I avoid the “daughter sigh.”

I was prepared to not pursue this topic. However, I find 99 percent of people who have hearing loss do want to detail their world with me. I listen, humbled, learning from each.

He said, “Most people don’t notice. My wife’s worse! She’s the one I worry about. I’ll tell you tomorrow, okay?” I nodded.

We returned to our task – “required gowning with gloves and mask in the hall before entering.”

The next day the nurse met me. “I’ve been waiting for you.”

He asked how I was familiar with hearing loss. I shared “court reporter, CART provider, captioner, consultant.”

This nurse said, “My wife and children have serious issues. I just have hearing loss. But I know what I want before I lose my hearing.”

“My wife has glaucoma. When she was a teen she took glaucoma medicine to decrease her eye pressure. The medicine also decreases inner ear pressure and damages nerves. Her hearing loss now is from medicine long ago. What’s worse than that?”

“Each generation then has hearing loss from the parent’s medicine.”

“Our children have decreased hearing and so will their children. One son is 12. He has huge decreased hearing. I worry about our children.”

He paused before continuing.

“Since their hearing loss is more severe, their treatments come first. I’ve studied genetics about this. The fear of losing eyesight and hearing is devastating to my wife and to our children. That’s why we’re not going to have any more children. And my work …” his voice trailed off.

He beamed, “But I know exactly what I want. It’s state-of-the-art.”

Part I is posted July 11, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com
Part II is posted July 28, 2013, www.monettebenoit.com
Part III is posted August 11, 2013, 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 & 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 (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 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.

11 Jul 2013

Ouch. That Hurt My Ears! Part III of III

Ouch. That Hurt My Ears! Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
June 2013

Part I began: Another errand. Another task to be completed.

My mother has been hospitalized for a while now. We have serious issues – to include ICU and MRSA isolation (multiple hospital bacteria, each gifted to Mom – again).

Yesterday Mom’s twin brother died.

When he was a Marine (enlisting ‘underage’ without telling his mother) Mom’s twin brother served on the front lines in Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Gudalcanal, and numerous other battles.

When her twin brother was shot, Mom woke, crying at 4:30 a.m. …

… Each time the double doors opened the cashier gasped.

She lowered her head, placing one hand over each ear as she winced. Stunned, I watched.

Then the woman said, “It is so windy outside! Every time the doors open it hurts my ears. Ouch!” …

Part II began:

Faith, “Mom resisted for so long… Mom didn’t think it would work. This is the funny part. Just as the lady turned on the sound machine to test her hearing the air conditioning unit went off. That pressure hurt Mom’s ears. She said, ‘Ouch! That hurts!’ Then Mom was angry at the noise. My step-dad and I laughed. Then Mom was angry with us for laughing. So we laughed harder until she ‘finally’ understood that she was angry at our laughing and ‘that’ was sound. Her first sound in 30 years. Then she laughed.”

I smiled. Faith continued, “Now my son has a hearing loss, too. He has the gene, I guess. He just finished a tour in Afghanistan. He missed the hearing test! And he wanted to serve so bad! So he wrote his quartermaster a letter telling him how much it would mean to serve. And his letter worked! They took him! He served, though failing the hearing test was not shared with others … He’s just come home. That’s why I agreed to get the implant. I may have grandchildren soon. I want to hear everything! Everything!”

Part III:

I asked, “Your mother has nine siblings with hearing loss? You and your son have a hearing loss?”

She laughed, “Yes! And it’s been perfectly normal for us. Mom didn’t want to hear all of us when we were kids – she used to tease us. It’s all been perfectly normal. Now she can hear perfect! Soon I will, too. And I have tinnitus and that hurts, too. Ouch, the doors just opened again.”

The woman behind me wore dark eyeglasses, a large hat.

She shoved a bag onto the counter, and chin down said, “This doesn’t work. Here!”

Watching the rude woman I paused before taking two steps away from the counter. Faith was beaming with a huge smile. She winked at me, took the bag and asked the woman, “How may I help you?” The frowning woman never looked Faith in the eye. She snarked and barked at Faith.

Yet Faith smiled at me for the longest time. When the doors next opened, Faith winced. She did not cover her ears.

Dramatically, she pointed to one ear, slowly mouthing “cochlear implant.” Then she laughed.

I held my bag of sympathy cards for my mother’s twin brother’s family, headed to the door and tried to exit opening one door just a little (to avoid pressure on Faith’s ears).

The wind gusts grabbed the door from my hand and flew wide open.

Frozen, I looked back at Faith. Her beaming smile remained and Faith said, loudly, “Thank you. Thank you for telling me about the successes! Two weeks! Can’t wait!”

Oh, this lady touched my heart.

Her hope and enthusiasm will serve her well as she welcomes ‘sound’ back into her world.

Had it not been for the need for sympathy cards for my mom (which Mom cannot select due to her hospitalization), traveling a new road on an abnormally windy day – I would have missed this opportunity to meet Faith. And I am grateful she shared.

Faith and her son – each choosing to receive cochlear implants – will have opportunities and choices that many people with hearing loss previously were not afforded.

And the Deaf community’s reaction?

Oh, that’s a whole nuther kettle of fish.

Cochlear implants are not for everyone; this I know from CARTing and captioning many seminars where individuals shared from podiums (and privately to me).

Yet, for Faith, per Faith, this is going to change everything for Faith.

And isn’t that grand? She has choices.
“And three generations with implants,” Faith repeatedly emphasized.

As I stood, bag in hand with the sympathy cards, Faith shared that when her first mother heard the air conditioning noise voicing her first ‘sound’ sentence, “Ouch, that hurts” – her mother’s second sentence was “Isn’t Jesus great?”

Faith shared “Isn’t Jesus great?” is now their family motto when it comes to loss of hearing and to increasing their hearing.

One of my personally challenging days turned into a sweet, memorable day gifted by an enthusiastic woman “waiting to hear again.” And “isn’t that great?” I now ask you?

Part I of III is posted June 3, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings
Part II of III is posted June 14, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings
Part III of III is posted June 25, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings

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.

27 Jun 2013

Ouch. That Hurt My Ears! Part I of III

Ouch. That Hurt My Ears! Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
June 2013

Another errand. Another task to be completed.

My mother has been hospitalized for a while now.

We have serious issues – to include ICU and MRSA isolation (multiple hospital bacteria, each gifted to Mom – again).

Yesterday Mom’s twin brother died.

When he was a Marine (enlisting ‘underage’ without telling his mother) Mom’s twin brother served on the front lines in Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Gudalcanal, and numerous other battles.

When her twin brother was shot, Mom woke, crying at 4:30 a.m.

Mom told her mother, “He’s been shot!” pointing to specific areas on her body.

Mom’s mother (court stenographer and a piano prodigy) told my mom that it was a bad dream, hugged her, and gently told Mom, then a teen, to go back to sleep.

The next morning, Corpus Christi’s Western Union delivered the news.

Yes, Mom’s twin brother was shot and injured exactly where Mom had described to her mother at 4:30 a.m. with her twin brother stationed in an undisclosed location with the Marines in the Pacific.

With her twin’s death yesterday, and my concerns about my mom and her failing health, I left her hospital room to purchase sympathy cards.

Today we have a wind advisory day with 40-50 mile per hour winds. I raced in, selected several cards, sprinted to one of many cashiers.

I placed the sympathy cards on the counter.

Each time the double doors opened the cashier gasped.

She lowered her head, placing one hand over each ear as she winced. Stunned, I watched.

Then the woman said, “It is so windy outside! Every time the doors open it hurts my ears. Ouch!”

Softly I said, “Maybe chewing gum might help – like pressure in a plane?” (I did not know what to say – was running late. I needed to head off.)

The woman smiled, “No, it’s the pressure inside my hearing aid in each ear. But in two weeks I get my cochlear implant! Then I won’t have this problem. And that will be wonderful. Then my ears won’t hurt from any pressure.”

I smiled.

She did not know that I have worked within the Deaf and HOH, hard of hearing, communities since 1993 providing CART, Communication Access Real Time, and captioning to large and small screens for many, many public and private events.

She did not know that I am very familiar with cochlear implant technology, individuals, and children.

Faith said, “I have needed a cochlear implant for so long. I have not wanted one. My mother got one. She loves hers! She raised us children without being able to hear most of our life. But now she can hear.”

I remained silent.

Faith said, “Most people don’t know what they are. But it will help me with the pressure, and I won’t have to worry about winds and this excruciating pain!”

Softly I said, “I am familiar with cochlear implants.”

She beamed.

“You are? Well, my mother is one of 13 children. Nine have cochlear implants. Now my generation is losing our hearing. When Mom got her implant it was so funny!”

I turned to see if anyone was standing behind me in the busy store. Nope. I was “all ears” as I turned back to listen to this cheerful lady.

Part I of III is posted June 3, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings
Part II of III is posted June 14, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings
Part III of III is posted June 25, 2013 on the blog Monette’s Musings

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.

03 Jun 2013

Game-Changer … Will He Make It?, Part III of III

Game-Changer … Will He Make It?, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
March 2013

Part I began: During an errand to a home improvement center, I witnessed a “game-changing moment,” in my opinion. It unfolded before my ears – and my eyes. Then I was gifted with an opportunity.

I needed a tool. I walked with purpose. After seeing me repeatedly strolling the same aisle, an employee asked me what I was seeking.

He said, “That’s not here! It’s the only tool in our department that’s way, way over there!” I asked for the aisle number. He said, “Follow me.” He was accurate with “follow me.”

We briskly strolled from one end of the large store to the other. I followed; he walked three steps ahead of me.

That was when I noticed a frowning employee approaching in a sprint, lips pursed. I stepped back. Yet my radar was up; I thought I saw it. I watched the frowning employee’s intense focus.

The frowning employee never took his eyes off the young employee’s face who responded, speaking into the air away from the frowning man.

Part II began: The employee shrugged. Then that dude increased his walk until he was two steps in front of me.

I touched his right arm, startling him.

I asked if he knew the employee that he had assisted. “Nope. Started today. He’s just some new guy. Okay?”

I believe I smiled for the first time. To his back I said, “He is deaf. And he is way smarter than you.”

This news brought the employee to an abrupt stop. He stopped so suddenly that I almost walked smack into his back. Stunned, he made eye contact.

Part III: His eyes were soft. He stood only inches away from me when he softly asked, “What does he need?” He had stopped touching his store beeper. He removed the earpod within each ear. (That was when I knew I had his attention.)

I shared, “I have worked with and have been embraced by deaf adults and deaf children. He will need someone he can trust – especially if this is his first day, and there is no one to help him.”

The employee smiled. “I will keep an eye out for him today. That’s not my area. It’s way over there. I’m supposed to stay way over here.”

Then he said the words that meant much to me. This young man who had been so rude to me said, “Thank you. I never would have known. No one here knows. Thank you for taking your time to share with me.”

I asked what the probationary period is for new employees. (Court reporter focus here.) When he shared, “30 days,” I nodded and turned to walk away.

From behind he touched my right arm. When I turned back to him, he extended his right hand. I respectfully shook his hand. We closed the deal.

Recently, I was in the same store and saw an employee I have known for years. I strolled up, “I need to ask you something.” We both looked left and right – for supervisors.

I asked, “Just over a month ago I was in here, and it was the first day for a deaf employee. Do you know the man?” I did not wince; I waited while he thought.

Then he said, “Yes! I know the man. Do you need something from him? I can help you.” I paused – before I asked, “If I need something from him – I could have him help me? Yes?” (My code for “Does he still work here?”)

The man said, “Today’s his day off. What do you need?”

Softly I said, “I have what I need now. Thank you.”

What opportunity was I gifted with as I wrote at the beginning of my article here?

Ah, grasshoppers: quietly advocating to someone who could (then would) make a difference in a person’s new job. In so doing, that person then stepped ‘up’ the center to now become an advocate for others.

Moments unfold into experiences. Experiences then become game-changers.

My opinion is that I viewed a game-changing moment to quietly, respectfully advocate (in a home improvement center). That advocating assisted another person to assist a new employee to “make it on the job.”

You, too, have these moments. Of this I am sure. Indeed you do. Game-changing moments.

Part I of III is posted March 2, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 17, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 29, 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.

29 Mar 2013

Wheels Slowing Spinning? What’s Your Motivation? Part III of III

Wheels Slowing Spinning? What’s Your Motivation?
Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
October 2012

Part I began: If you could do anything with your life what would it be?

What would you ‘really’ do with your time, your heart, your ears, and your hands?

Would you share your court reporting skills with individuals who are waiting to ‘hear’ from you?

Would you work in court? Would you focus on specialty freelance reporting? Would you really work with attorneys? (Yes, I asked that question.) Many of us have enjoyed the thrill of working with attorneys and many still do now.

Would you provide CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation)?

Would you learn sign language to have the ability to share your top-shelf skills to communicate with all your consumers? Would you learn about the Little D world, Big D, oral deaf, late-deafened, and hard-of-hearing children and adults?

Would you caption? Would you be able and willing to caption during the evenings, weekends, and holidays? It goes with the territory for many broadcast captioners. I know captioners who have shared with me that they spent years writing “down the hall” or “in the basement” or “upstairs” away from their family, yet were able to hear family laughter and loud voices. Would they do it all again? Many state they would.

And there will be individuals who will read this column, tilt their heads and think, “I am doing what I really want to do. I am.”

To that I say, “Bravo.”

Part II began: Yet if you could do anything with your skills, have you made a list to find out what “that anything” is? Have you listed what you would have to learn, what you would need to finish, to accomplish that list? I know people like the term “bucket list.” If those words for you, great.

If your heart is almost full after working, or you believe it would be “fuller if …” then perhaps now is the time for you to peek up from that desk. Now may be the time to move away from some of the daily drama that we “know” fills our busy world.

When we know a commute will require a longer drive-time on a particular road, we make different choices, yes? We find another road or perhaps we leave at another time, if that is possible. Often, we will do our darnest to avoid sitting in that darn traffic.

We avoid sitting with the wheels slowly spinning.

Are your wheels slowly spinning? What is your motivation?

Part III: What would motivate you to act on your motivation once you define specifics?

Is money again at the top of the list? When was the last time you left a job, onsite or remote, as a court reporter, captioner, CART provider, or student and felt that you had pitched your best? When did you last know you accomplished what you had planned and had worked toward?

Perhaps you want to raise your expectations for your world and to believe that you do have the coping skills to live the life you planned.

When I listen to individuals sharing their dreams, their hopes, their expectations, their fears, and yes, their successes, I am honored at what is shared straight-up, no excuses given. Court reporters tell it like it is. Really straight-up.

As we prep to roll into the holidays many of us will spend time helping others. We will schedule our time around other people’s schedules, personally and professionally, adding to the expectations of others with our hearts, our ears, our hands, and our time.

I want to suggest that you remember you are an investment that will multiple into grand, new paths when you are truly making the best choices for you.

What is your motivation to get up each day? For what are you grateful each evening and within your quiet moments?

My wish is that your goals, your dreams, will begin to whisper to you.

I wish that your whispers will become dreams, then goals.

Your goals will become committed statements.

Your statements will become reality.

You are what motivates me as I finish this article late in the evening on another extended deadline.

So many reporters and students have crossed my path as a result of my years of court reporting, publishing books and CDs, learning how to provide and then sharing CART, captioning, teaching, tutoring, coaching, public speaking, and sixteen years writing this JCR (Journal of Court Reporting) “Beyond The Comfort Zone” column.

Tonight I am working with eyeglasses that are broken (yes, we just move forward, don’t we?). I am helping my mother continue to deal with serious health issues as she grieves the death of her husband (my dad) of fifty-eight years. Then I read an email or receive a message wherein you share. The spark(s), and sparkle, in many of you is what motivates me, and I thank you.

Part I of III is posted October 4, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 18, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 30, 2012, 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.

30 Oct 2012

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part III of III

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: The sun is shining; it is almost 80 degrees in Texas as I write this column in March.

Winter was mild here and after months and months with severe drought and watering restrictions, we have rain. We have much rain. …

Part II: Many court reporters and court reporting students share they are overwhelmed.

As I help each person, I hear conversations where individuals want to “cram” (my word) years of schooling and work into an extremely short period of time with “extreme changes” (their words).

Perhaps “inner landscaping” needs to be defined.

Where does one begin?

As this varies with each person’s goals and commitments I advise starting with a position we clearly define to advance forward into a steady adventure.

Steady strength building (my term), in my opinion, prevents burn out with goals that may be(come) challenging.

Again, this will change with each person.

Inner landscaping involves weeding out what is not working and planting seeds for growth that will now organize your skills and your desired skills. …

Part III: Individuals in our field desire to improve and to advance management techniques.

Where are you stuck?

Where do you think you are stuck?

What weeds do you want to eliminate to avoid frustration and wasting time (words often shared with me)?

So where does the “nuclear implants” from the title come into this month’s column?

Simply put, I thought you would enjoy this true event.

As I was “weeding” this article, my office received a phone call.

I was informed I needed to promptly return the call as “they need help for someone with a nuclear implant.”

Yes, I promptly returned the call.

Yes, the individual has a (long) job title specific to assisting consumers and individuals with specific requests.

The person making the request then stated, “The reason for phoning is to have you translate the language for nuclear implant people.”

Yes, I am sure the request was for a cochlear implant – not nuclear implant – and translation of a language is not necessary.

As a court reporter I listened and was then informed by this individual what “all we really need is your lowest price to translate the language for those nuclear implant people? That’s all we want to know.” Imagine that.

Weeding, inner landscapes, and nuclear transplants.

Our work and our world is changing.

I believe that you deserve to remove the weeds (this may include people, too) in your world.

You deserve to customize your inner landscape and to enjoy the process.

And I wish you persistence on your path.

As I finished this article, the mail was delivered.

The postal lady said, I kid you not, “Here you go. I spent the last several days weeding my yard and my mother’s yard. She’s too old, 96, to do it by herself. It sure is soothing to weed, isn’t it?”

I blinked hard and tipped my head.

She said, “At the end of my busy day I actually look forward to going out there and just ripping those weeds up out of the ground – roots and all!”

I bowed my head, smiling.

“Yes indeed,” was my only reply.

She wiped the sweat off her forehead with her elbow and upper arm.

She laughed, “I work hard all day outdoors, too, to then go out there and go get ‘em. That’s how I’m relaxing now. And I find it soothing. I get to think and plan my next day and my world. Whoever thought I’d actually look forward to that?”

I smiled and watched her depart. Yes indeed.

Weeding helps her to sort the details and to plan her world.

And you? What helps you?

Part I of III is posted June 1, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted June 21, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted June 29, 2012, 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.

29 Jun 2012

How To Write Ineffectively, Part III of III

How To Write Ineffectively, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

“There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus”, March 2012, included one sentence that has resulted in (many, many) private emails from students, court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners.

I have been asked to elaborate. …

Part II: Is the problem not having the word translate correctly? That is fixable.

Is the problem being in over one’s head with a job that is too technical?

Knowing when to ask for backup and seeking help is essential here, too.

Have you ever written a test or a job where you thought the speaker(s) would never stop talking?

Have you endured and stayed in the chair while the words were “way” fast, too difficult?

Yet, when the event finished, the earth did not swallow you (I have prayed for this, CARTing to large screens).

Part III: Writing every day and not progressing? What is tranning correctly, and what is an error is, again, going to be very different for a student and reporter taking a 5-minute test and a court reporter, CART provider, or captioner, providing the verbatim, accurate record.

Do you know your software? Are you trailing when you make the error? Are you dropping multiple words? Do you know your theory? Can you fingerspell the word? (I cannot tell you how many individuals tell me they have never been able to do this and will never be able to accomplish fingerspelling.) Learn to fingerspell words, know what is in your dictionary, fingerspell the dang word and get on to the next word. Really.

Do you have test anxiety? Anxiety contributes to errors.

Where did you excel on a test or on the job? What enabled you to feel good, to sit taller, to know you were doing a great job? Focus on that, too.

Good writing – excellent writing is vital.

Analyze what is working for you and what needs improvement.

The “evidence” is right there in front of you. Truly.

Are you taking vitamins, exercising, sleeping more than five hours a night?

(I am making a point with five hours a night unless you are one of the special people like Betty White, 90 years old, who only needs four hours. Standard? Not for many of us, right?)

If you are writing ineffectively I want to ask what appears to drain you?

Are you enjoying your schooling and career adventure? (It is a path with great learning curves, my opinion.)

Are you satisfied at work?

Do you feel that you are working far too many hours? That may contribute, too.

Many reporters tell me that they are “now expected” to do more and now receive less income.

Many individuals, during coaching, tell me that they “resent” this.

If you feel overwhelmed, while working privately with you, I would ask if you have any area in your life where you feel true joy.

When students were truly overwhelmed, I encouraged students to come to the SAMM Center, San Antonio Metropolitan Ministries, a homeless shelter in San Antonio, and work the chow line with me. Really.

What charges you and inspires you? This is unique for each of us.

If you are focusing on how to avoid writing ineffectively, I would recommend that you enroll in a seminar, a webinar, request private tutoring/coaching.

Attend a convention to find the spirit and enthusiasm that brought you into this wonderful profession in the first place.

Conventions and online gatherings share enthusiasm and expertise from gifted professionals.

I always learn from each event “and” the person who asks the question that may appear simple to others. These events are wonderful for recharging you.

Will you ever write a perfect test, a perfect take, a perfect job, a perfect class and perfect show? Perhaps, my friend.

This is always our goal, yes?

Find the resistance, take charge, and confidently move forward while writing effectively.

Opportunities are waiting for you. Waiting for you.

Part I of III is posted May 2, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2012, 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.

25 May 2012

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part III of III

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

Part I: Privately working with students and experienced court reporters a theme appears with each person. A desire is born. A wanting is experienced. Boundaries are removed. Fences (insecurities) are lowered. …

Part II: Students and court reporters know how to work and how to write ineffectively.

In short, we know what does not work.

When the circus is loud and stomping around your home and/or work place, it can be colorful.

Yet when we permit the circus to remain at the forefront in our daily and weekly schedule we witness shifts in our empowering moments. …

Part III: Our circus may have colorful connections; yet we know that every word, and every new skill, every new goal, and every new item added on our to-do list will change the whole enchilada.

And this can be a good thing when we are the masters at the circus gate, and when we are the one who remembers to set aside time to reach our personal and professional enrichment.

When we have the tools to know how to successfully write each word, how to succinctly respond and react to each action which may have power over our journey, we are one step toward mastering our crossroads.

We can be the conductor in “that there” three-ring circus.

Oh so true, many of us have been inside the circus so long that the circus feels comfy and familiar.

Coaching, I frequently comment to students, reporters, and to court reporting instructors, “There’s a whole lot you got going on in that there circus.”

Each person responds with sincere, honest replies.

Every student, every reporter and every instructor, shares full and complete accountings to their circus. I’m talking sustained, detailed descriptions. Many, just listening to their own words, laugh saying, “Did I really just say that?”

When we step back and look around, many of us are amazed at what we are actually accomplishing while in the circus each and every day.

Thus I ask you to listen to your words containing “should, could, need, want” and to then listen to your circus.

I am not requesting a complicated flowchart with systematic details and annotated exhibits.

I am suggesting that you (me, too) may be permitting exterior people and exterior energy to divert you away from your true “expansions.”

Do you have a lot going on in your circus?

Ask yourself this question three times a day, and you will know the answer.

You will know where you are headed and where you want to be.

The circus then becomes a focused mindset enabling each of us to transform our world moment by moment.

“Monette’s Circus Survivor Manual” is a simple yet powerful tool when you are the chef to your whole enchilada – and you are not on autopilot.

Part I of III is posted March 2, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 20, 2012, 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.

29 Mar 2012

“I Love You,” He Squealed, Part III of III

“I Love You,” He Squealed, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: He squealed, “I love you!” at the top of his lungs, multiple times, before he was physically removed, gently and lovingly.

How did that happen? The morning began quietly. …

For three months I had been looking for a robe for my hospitalized father and thought perhaps this national store might have one.

Men’s robes are hard to find – outside of Christmas, I am learning. Within the store that did not have men’s robe I saw huge signs. I selected three items, and with two coupons, I went to the intimates counter. (Lines are always shorter.) …

The youngster said, loudly, “Papa chair!” The couple near the child gasped. …

Part II: Then he blew a loud, large raspberry on my arm. That’s when the couple accompanying the child stepped in. They were mortified. Me? Not at all.

The man said, “I’m so sorry! We’re taking him out to be around people. His parents are getting a divorce – six long months! – both are deaf.

“They can’t find interpreters to help them in court. The case continues to be delayed. We’re helping our daughter. She’s deaf.”

Part III: Many professionals now wonder if the lack of words by the young child is due to marital conflicts (“awful things” they said) and “that divorce that is dragging on and on and on.”

“We are taking him with us now to help him to learn to speak.”

I listened, softly sharing what I felt was appropriate.

The grandmother commented that she was impressed I knew sign. She said, “I never learned.”

I did not blink; I did not judge.

She continued, “I never learned because sign interpreters in my daughter’s schools were always changing. Each did a different sign language. There are many.”

I replied, “Yes, 22, as I understand.”

She continued, “Each day my daughter’s signs changed, and I couldn’t keep up … working and raising my children.”

She looked away. She looked so sad.

The grandfather had stepped away, down the aisle. I signed to the youngster; he didn’t sign back.

His grandmother, “I’m so sorry for what he’s done to you. We are going to correct that.”

Again, I repeated that I was fine.

I touched her arm and looked to the young boy.

Then I signed the ASL “I love you” sign.

The child gasped, opened his mouth wide and squealed, “I LOVE YOU!! I love you! I love you!!”

His grandfather scooped him up in his arms while the child loudly repeated his words. He waved the sign overhead with his right hand.

Then I signed the private, family ASL “I love you” sign.

He promptly wiggled out of his grandfather’s arms, solemnly stood on the floor facing me, feet apart, and with sincere emotion, signed a sentence to me and ended the sentence with the formal “I love you” and a salute.

His grandmother now had a pen.

Would I write down the name of the sign interpreting company and details that would help her? “Yes, ma’am.”

I asked if they were members of CODA, Children of Deaf Adults with a national association, state and local chapters?

No, they had never heard of that group.

I maintained my court reporter posture, no facial emotion.

I wrote the name of groups, words, information, and phone numbers that I knew would benefit this family.

When I finished, the grandmother hugged me.

The child was still holding the formal “I love you” sign.
The grandfather was mouthing “thank you” over and over.

Again, he scooped up his grandson and began to walk away.

I could hear the child with his loud, louder and then still louder, “I love you!” as they left the department and entire area of the store.

When I slowly looked back to the register, customers and staff were frozen in posture.

The cashier said, “I knew a deaf person once.”

I did not roll my eyes or exhale.

I listened to the young voice shrieking “I love you!” which could be heard throughout the entire store as he was carried to the front doors.

And I wondered, “What do others think is happening right now?”

My path may never cross this young child or grandparents again.

When I least expect it my path is changed.

The messenger that day was a 4-year old who squealed with delight and grandparents who hugged me for helping their family.

Returning to my office, I placed calls to referrals, adding details, if the grandparents phoned. Each promised to do all they could to help.

I never learned the youngster’s name, yet I will always remember his bright spirit and his signed words.

I wish only the best for the young child who kissed my arm twice, then blew a raspberry. That day, in Intimates, he truly touched my heart, and I left without the robe for my father.

Telling Dad about the event later as a patient in Warm Springs Hospital, Dad smiled a sweet smile and giggled.

Robeless, Dad was ‘working’ to walk again.

He continued to repeat, his mantra, “I still have things I want to do. Busy. Busy. Busy. That’s me!”

And I walked, ever so slowly with Dad, nurses on his left and right, as he pushed himself with each step, holding machines, wires, IVs.

He did not want anyone’s help. “No! “I can do this by myself!” Each time, the nurses would raise their eyebrows and look to me. Each time, I would smile and say, “That’s ‘my’ dad …”

After a walk, we both rested.

Dad smiled a sweet smile as I described details that I am unable to share here.

That day, Dad, the teacher, social worker, guidance counselor, husband and father, agreed with me that the messenger was a 4-year old child learning to speak who clearly has buckets of love he wants to share. Buckets of pure love and grandparents who wish a better world for their family. Amen. May it be so for all of us.

Monette Benoit may be reached for tutoring and coaching: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Part I of III is posted October 5, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 17, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted October 28, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal
Motivation Management & Life Coach,
Tutor and Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting & 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
All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

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

Monette wants to help you and others to pass your test and to exceed 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 coaching?

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

Coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivation skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Communication skills and daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and coaching?

• Veteran court reporters, CART providers and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re falling behind or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students or 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 and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with one or two key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check It Out: Reach Your Goals! Tutoring and Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit 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, 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, 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, remote, students.

Her one-on-one tutoring 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.

28 Oct 2011

“I Love You,” He Squealed, Part I of III

“I Love You,” He Squealed, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

He squealed, “I love you!” at the top of his lungs, multiple times, before he was physically removed, gently and lovingly.

How did that happen?

The morning began quietly.

While running errands I had a store coupon for 20 percent off everything in a store. At the door, I was handed another 10 percent coupon.

For three months I had been looking for a robe for my hospitalized father and thought perhaps this national store might have one.

Men’s robes are hard to find – outside of Christmas, I am learning.

Within the store that did not have men’s robe I saw huge signs. I selected three items, and with two coupons, I went to the intimates counter. (Lines are always shorter.)

A couple was at the register; a youngster played with a small, yellow truck on the carpet.

A high-back wood chair sits near the counter.

I sat in the chair for a moment with the hangers in my left hand.

The youngster said, loudly, “Papa chair!” The couple near the child gasped.

I nodded gently and said, “I’m good.” I looked to the child and in ASL, American Sign Language, I signed, “Now Baby Bear chair.”

Raised the daughter of two educators, (mother with a degree in special elementary education, brother born “special needs”), I am comfortable and often entertained by such moments.

The boy repeated “NO!!! Papa chair!”

Me, voicing softly and signing, “Was Papa chair. Now Baby Bear chair.”

He gasped, picked up his truck (put it in his mouth). Then he walked to me.

He took the truck out of his mouth and kissed my left arm – a big, messy kiss.

I paused before wiping my very wet arm. I removed the items to my right hand. The items I was holding (on sale 20 percent without the two coupons) now were suspended in the air.

Then he blew a loud, large raspberry on my arm.

That’s when the couple accompanying the child stepped in.

They were mortified. Me? Not at all.

The man said, “I’m so sorry! We’re taking him out to be around people. His parents are getting a divorce – six long months! – both are deaf. They can’t find interpreters to help them in court. The case continues to be delayed. We’re helping our daughter. She’s deaf.”

Part I of III is posted October 5, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 17, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted October 28, 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.

05 Oct 2011

My Village Chief is HOH, Part III of III

My Village Chief is HOH, Part III 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. …

Part II: 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.

He nodded. Slowly, I asked, “Can any GP, general practicioner, any doctor, do what you just did?”

The doctor looked puzzled.

I asked, “Can any doctor go into an organ, one bleeding for months from cancer radiation not knowing what the doctor will find, eliminate multiple blood clots, clean the organ, and assist the patient – all in realtime – as you just did?”

He shot back in his chair, “No!”

I leaned into my village chief, “That’s my answer to you.” …

Part III: A nurse ran into the room with a phone. She said slowly, loudly, “HERE! When it rings, you answer, okay? The cardiologist will phone, okay!?”

My village chief paused before he looked away. I saw it.

Everyone could hear that nurse.

When the phone rang in my village chief’s hand, the nurse loudly said, “It’s ringing!!” He looked to the floor and said nothing before he placed that phone to his ear.

Soon, he departed without looking back, “We have to do this before this patient leaves Recovery. We only have minutes.” I thanked his back as he exited. Yes, he heard me.

A cardiologist appeared.

Soon, I answered my parent’s questions, and chose not to volunteer details while anesthesia and specialists were flowing in and nearby – all in realtime.

Then I drove to the one parent, recuperating after 57 days in hospitals now able to sit up.

I left out “Really bad. Could die …”

I focused on, “The doctors are wonderful.”

I checked meds, fed my parent, took out the trash, drove home.

That night a package arrived. (I receive a JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, for my library due to this column.) I was surprised to see the March 2010 JCR, not a current edition.

The cover detailed court reporters reporting veterans’ stories. My column that month was “A Number Of Firsts” profiling Karen Sadler, Ph.D., self-described “severely hard of hearing,” and Karen’s path to doctoral studies.

The next day I took the NCRA JCR, within envelope (to avoid others seeing my magazine), and waited for my village chief.

In IM-ICU I said, “I think this is a sign that I’m supposed to give this to you. I circled HOH and veterans articles you might enjoy.”

The proud WW II vet said, “I have multiple surgeries, and I’m helping doctors tonight. I’ll read this before I go to bed. Promise!”

He patted my arm; my JCR was tucked under his left elbow. Then, he ran down the hall to his next surgery.

We see each other often now with two parents hospitalized for seven-plus months.

Recently, a parent was re-admitted through ER, then moved to the surgical floor.

Married 57 years, my parents were 500 feet apart before an ambulance transported one parent to another hospital without letting them see each other.

When I see my chief, I call to his back (he hears), “Hey, Village Chief!”

He always turns around, “Hi! I have a patient …”

I smile, “I know. You have a patient waiting in surgery.” “Yes,” then sprints off.

When he has a moment, I share a hug.

Privately, I share events that baffle me.

“There’s too much blood – on the floor, the patient, in a cup on a shelf, in the cath; the patient does not know where the door is. Still the hospital is working to discharge this ICU patient today.”

He listens, sharing private opinions. Private opinions.

The hospital did discharge the patient hours later. I insisted that my concerned “are charted” for this patient.

The patient, my parent, was readmitted approximately 7 hours later with a 103 degree fever.

The ER staff was adamant that the hospital never should have discharged this patient, and the patient would have died that night if the patient had not returned to the ER.

I immediately requested my village chief.

He stepped back in, again this man saved my parent’s life – again – and I am listening to this wise doctor who has a passion for his work – again.

My village chief is hard of hearing, and I would have it no other way. He has saved my parent’s life so many times I have lost count.

This is perfect in my world right now.

And now I thank each of you, court reporters, broadcast captioners and CART providers for all that you do to help others – to include my village chief. Thank you, mon amis.

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.

23 Sep 2011

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

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

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

Part I began: 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.

Part II: Several professionals pushed eyeglasses down their noses to look into my eyes and ask, “Who are you again?” when I asked a direct question, then fully listened.

After many moments (several weeks), multiple shifts, medical disciplines, specialties, third-party contractors, housekeeping staff, and daily rotating staff, I am focused upon how people react with our “full listening.”

I had not wanted to “out myself” as a court reporter.

In fact, I worked to share that I’m an author – or teacher.
I asked Mom or Dad not to out me.

Each time a parent detailed, “She’s a court reporter, and she’s worked in court,” I saw a reaction.

I shared that I am here as a daughter.

(Then I would think of the “Jerry Seinfeld” show, “Not that there’s anything wrong with that.”)

One doctor commented that he didn’t like that I was writing down words after people spoke. (I cannot make ‘that’ up.)

I explained that I write specific words to process the many, many (long) medical terms.

Perhaps I was asked not to write, not to make notes … and I listened to that request, too.

Then I wrote the details I might not have documented. A result?

One sampling: Mom received her “unavailable until Monday” scripted medicines (for an extreme rash) and had her teeth brushed late Saturday night. Really.

How was that accomplished?

I phoned late Saturday evening and said that I would bring my camera Sunday morning if Mom was not ‘treated’ with her meds and needs.

I was focused on preventing unnecessary suffering for the patient, my mother.

The hospital staff and I could not agree on the same focus.

Part I of III is posted April 7, 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, 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.

19 Apr 2011

Conflicting Goals, Your Sandbox, And Circling, Part II of III

Conflicting Goals, Your Sandbox, And Circling,
Part II of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
March 2011

Part I began: Listening to a court reporter I ‘heard’ a pattern.

The court reporter and CART provider, now gainfully employed, is seeking to advance goals. Great.

The court reporter has a full-time job. Great.

The court reporter and CART provider has full-time family responsibilities and a good commute. Fact.

Where did the ‘circling’ occur while I fulfilled this customized request to tutor and coach?

The circling, in my opinion, occurred with ‘conflicting goals’ (my term) during our tutoring and coaching schedule.

One goal would place the reporter in a specific ‘spot’ on a designated date.

Part II: I was not disrespectful when I laughed.

From my chair and window to the world it was a great comment from a professional with a tenacious personality who would do much to reach the sought goals. This is one determined individual. My laughter was true based upon the “bad marriage and trapped” comment.

Then, the court reporter also laughed. Long, hardy, loud laughter.

Sometimes we do need to throw the mud on the floor, yes?

Then we can clean it up and move on with a clear head (and timeline).

Once we agreed on the true conflicting goals, the court reporter and I then refocused with a finer attention to detail.

We ended our tutoring and coaching session with the experienced court reporter now stating this was “not feeling trapped in that bad marriage awaiting benefits each day.”

This focus on conflicting goals was a benefit.

Are you concerned that your job will end suddenly? (Many now are.)

Are you sleeping less because of your concerns? (Many now are.)

List your goals and note the distance between each, if any.

If you want to run a CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) and broadcast captioning business and you are not near that target, you have work to do.

And that’s the good part.

We have multiple choices. We do. The court reporter and CART provider contacted me shortly after we mapped our new direction.

Part I of III is posted March 4, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 17, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 28, 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,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• 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.

17 Mar 2011

De-Can’t The I Can’t, Part III of III

De-Can’t The I Can’t, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
November/December 2010

Part I began: This November/December column was prompted after listening to an experienced court reporter express their “current mindset” during private coaching and tutoring.

The reporter, with vast experience, said, “I can’t do that. There can’t be no opportunities.” I was unclear if this was a comical statement or personal observation.

When the sentence was defined, at my request, the court reporter stated, “That’s really my opinion. But I really believe I can’t!” My reply was a simple, “Hmm. How’s that?”

This professional then listed a bucket of reasons and detailed explanations. Sentence after sentence began “I can’t …”

Due to “precise listening” in our court reporting field, we know there are high-frequency words and phrases. We know that all court reporting students are taught the phrase “I can’t” in a brief form.

As the holidays approach, I invite you to focus on the number of times you (I will include myself here) use the “I can’t” phrase.

What does this have to do with our work, our path? …

PART II began: I did not know the man, though I knew the national corporation.

Rather than discuss my shoe size with a list of questions clearly being trolled with multiple captioning and CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) offices (he confirmed this trolling, upon my request), I asked that he print the list and send the questions to me. Mr. IT Man quickly said, “I can’t.”

I paused and said softly, “Sir, you are clearly reading from a list. You are clearly asking me proprietary questions about my business. I’d like to clearly see your name on letterhead due to the nature of your specific questions, which you are entering into a computer.” (I could hear him typing. Yes, he confirmed that he was entering my information into a company database.) Again the IT Man said, “I can’t.”

I thanked him for the opportunity to work with the national company and assured him that he would find competent help with this service request. …

PART III: When we turn the “I can’t” phrase around and define our moments and our events with words that are powerful, we note differences in our world, our work, and our schooling. We do.

I want to invite you to note the frequency in which you (and perhaps individuals you work and live with) use this phrase.

My opinion is the focus in the phrase is similar to a focus with red cars (as an example).

When someone points out a specific red car, and we make a mental note of the red car, there ‘seem’ to be red cars everywhere.

Recently, while coaching and tutoring two individuals, I listened to the high-frequency “I can’t” phrase – a lot.

When I drew attention to the phrase, each stated, “It would be impossible to not use the wording.” Hmm.

I invited each, a professional, court reporter, CART provider, captioner, instructor, and a student, to place a dollar in a jar every time they avoided the phrase “I can’t” and to reward the moment for each opportunity where there was a focus and a shift.

Was this successful? Yes.

Each shared that their personal and professional world changed – within a short period of time – from this one simple focus.

One individual donated the money from the “I Can’t Dollar Jar” to a charity; the other purchased a coveted item as a reward.

Words have power. Words define who we are at the moment.

Court reporters, CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) providers and captioners are word people.

We are really, really good word people with sophisticated (finely-trained) disciplines.

“De-can’t the I can’t” and note the new moments and resourceful experiences that will begin to appear in realtime.

We have limitless choices with ‘huge’ potential.

Our choices then develop and unfold when we revise, amend, and modify our wording and our focus.

And what might you do with a “I Can’t Dollar Jar?” Oh, the possibilities … Happy Holidays.

Part I of III is posted November 14, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted December 2, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted December 15, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

—–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.

15 Dec 2010

A Number Of Firsts In Science Education With Karen Sadler, Ph.D., Part I

A Number of Firsts In Science Education With Karen Sadler, Ph.D., Part I                                              

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

JCR, Beyond The Comfort Zone, March 2010, Part I

The October e-mail from Karen Sadler began, “Hi, Monette. I hope you remember me. A few years ago I asked you about court reporters being used for Deaf people in educational environments. I want to let you know that I finished my work and graduated with a Ph.D. in science education. I thought you might be interested in my research.

“The 2003 to 2009 study related the work of court reporters compared to interpreters (court reporters did so much better than interpreters). It’s been a long haul for me, with a lot of obstacles.

“I’m teaching sciences at two universities right now, both online and classroom.

“Your name is in my (doctoral) references, and you helped significantly with understanding what court reporters do. Basically, they did a phenomenal job, and the only mistakes were due to science words not recognized by the dictionary in the software. … You taught me things I didn’t know about court reporters. I also asked you about software programs that court reporters use.”

Karen and I, in real-time, stepped back into our email friendship.

As we wrote, she was teaching multiple science courses, reviewing homework, and then grading final exams. I asked Karen Sadler to share her personal story.

Court reporters and CART providers currently sharing – and desiring to provide – equal access accommodations with deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals in an academic setting or work environment or social gathering (yes, in all settings) have much to learn from Dr. Karen Sadler.

I am honored to introduce you to Karen L. Sadler, Ph.D.

“I was born in Salt Lake City severely hard of hearing, in 1956. But my parents did not ‘discover’ it until I was 3 years old, when my mom noticed I was not turning around when she rang a bell behind me. So that started all the testing and speech therapy, and what not that all HOH, hard of hearing, and Deaf children go through.

I am legally deaf. I have no hearing in my right ear, and have an over 90-110 db (decibel) loss in my left ear, in most tones, but especially tones that encompass the human voice.

I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area in California where I went to a public school because there were no schools for the Deaf close enough that my mother felt comfortable sending me to. I had a great family, with two sisters. They were all musical, so I grew up with the piano constantly playing. I learned to understand music and play several instruments myself.

The schools were never comfortable having a deaf student in their classes, so I was constantly pulled out of class to take IQ tests. They thought they could test me out of the system and put me into a school for the mentally retarded.

This happened for three years, until I finally said something to my parents who put a stop to all this. My parents eventually received an apology from the district on this.

I received my first hearing aid at 13. It was amazing what I had missed. It was the first time I heard a bird, and I remember my mom crying when I said something about the bird making noise. I graduated with good grades and attended Brigham Young University. There I ran into problems prevalent at all universities: They wouldn’t let me major in what I wanted and kept shuttling me around. After four years I gave up.

I met my husband at college. We moved to Pittsburgh, PA, when he graduated where we raised three great children. After 12 years I decided I had to get a degree or get stuck in menial jobs all my life. I enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh.

My hearing loss intensified as I matured, but I lost almost all of it by 1991 and had a cochlear implant which failed. So I had to learn ASL, American Sign Language, to be able to get information in school.

I used ASL through my bachelor’s degree and my master’s degree. When I started my Ph.D. work, I started using CART personnel in my classrooms more often.

I set a number of ‘firsts’ graduating with a BS in Neuroscience and getting accepted to the Center for Neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh for graduate work.

One of my advisors noticed, in her classes, the difference between what I was ‘getting’ with CART services versus what I would ‘get’ from my interpreters. She said that half the time I looked totally confused with interpreters, swinging my head around trying to get info from lipreading other students and (lipreading) my advisor who was teaching the class; I would look at the board, and watch my interpreters to get what I could out of them.

I often had to work much harder than everyone else, in order to receive only part of the info. My advisor suggested that I look into this as a research topic. It hadn’t been done, especially in the sciences or math, which is significantly different than topics like history … the vocabulary and concepts are a lot harder to convey.

I finished my Ph.D. in science education in 2009.

Currently, I work at several universities teaching a variety of sciences to hearing students, which I enjoy thoroughly.

So now, the Deaf person is teaching eight classes on different sciences.

I teach all hearing students … nursing students, anatomy/physiology, environmental health, meteorology, geology, and I’ve taught physics, chemistry, and cell biology labs.”

Karen Sadler’s e-mails contain the footer, “Ethical axioms are found and tested not very differently from the axioms of science. Truth is what stands the test of experience. ~Albert Einstein.”

Part II will share the results of Karen Sadler’s Ph.D. studies.

~~  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.

 

17 Mar 2010

Deaf Smith, The Texas Spy, History, Alamo, Captioning, CART, and Laney Fox

Deaf Smith, The Texas Spy, History, Alamo, Captioning, CART, and Laney Fox
By Monette Benoit

Copyright 2007 by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

I first learned about Deaf Smith in 1993 when I entered Deaf culture as a realtime court reporter, CARTing, captioning to large screens for the deaf and hard-of-hearing communities.

I was stunned I did not know about this daring, bold hero of the Alamo. My Deaf friends simply shrugged, “It’s because you’re hearing.” As an educator, CART Captioner, and private tutor with strong roots within Texas, I immediately phoned my mother when I could to ask, “How did I miss that?”

Many people in Texas trace their family lines back to the Texas Revolution.

The Alamo (which means “cottonwood” in Spanish) was surrounded by General Santa Anna with 3,000 troops. Colonial Travis sent an appeal to help 188 patriots inside the fortress. Thirty-two men and boys from Gonzales, Texas, marched 90 miles, crossing Mexican Army lines to enter the besieged Alamo.

I am a descendant of a “Gonzales Fighter.”

Dolphin Ward Floyd left a nine-month pregnant wife and four-year old son – knowing he would not come back.

He was murdered within the Alamo on March 6, 1836, on his thirty-second birthday. Floyd County is named after his sacrifice; his widow received a land grant. My longhorn-ranching Gonzales, cousins Rufus and Raquet Floyd, shared facts, stories and lore that have passed from generations, as did my mother.

Yet I never knew about Deaf Smith until 1993.

As a court reporter, while providing CART (communication access realtime translation) at a Deaf banquet at the Lone Star Brewery, downtown San Antonio, with the sun setting, wind blowing, children playing cowboys and Indians (in full costume) around my one-legged large screen and my husband kneeling to hold that screen with two hands – there – I learned about a fearless Deaf soldier who crossed enemy lines to read lips changing history as we know it.

Erastus Smith was born in New York on April 19, 1787.

Born hearing, Smith became deaf as a child; later he was called Deaf Smith. In 1821, Deaf Smith moved near San Antonio. He married Mexican widow Guadalupe Ruiz Duran in 1822; they had four daughters.

Smith first joined Stephen F. Austin’s Texas Republican Army in Gonzales after a Mexican soldier denied Smith permission to visit his wife and family near the start of the Texas Revolution.

Smith used his deafness to gather intelligence as a courier and military spy. In October 1835, Smith was wounded in battle. General Sam Houston soon promoted Smith to captain.

The Texas army retreated with Santa Anna in pursuit after the 11-day Alamo battle. All the bodies at the Alamo were burned by Santa Anna’s 1,300 man-army. Three weeks later in Goliad, Santa Anna ordered the massacre of 300 prisoners from the Battle of Coleto Creek.

San Jacinto’s battle was forty-six days after the Alamo. (My dad took my mother to the San Jacinto battlefield on their first date. I still tease my mother, “And you went on a second date?”)

Deaf Smith, soldier, scout, guide, was instrumental in the defeat of Santa Anna and the Mexican Army when Deaf Smith informed General Houston about Vince’s Bridge – the path of retreat or support for both sides near San Jacinto. Smith was ordered to destroy Vince’s Bridge. The Mexican army, unable to retreat, was trapped after Vince’s Bridge burned. Houston led 800 volunteers against Santa Anna’s 1300-man Mexican Army.

Shouting “Remember The Alamo! Remember Goliad!” Texans killed 630 Mexican soldiers, captured Santa Anna and ended the war. Texas lost eight volunteers and was liberated from Mexico at San Jacinto, April 21, 1836. Texas won independence from Mexico to become an independent republic, October 22, 1836.

After the war, Deaf Smith remained active and led a company of Texas Rangers.

Mrs. Deaf Smith was profiled in my NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, JCR ‘Beyond The Comfort Zone’ column when Laney Fox-Smith wrote about her performance in the Ms. Deaf Texas pageant. Laney shares how she researched the role.

Laney Fox-Smith:

When I started thinking what to do for my talent for the 2001 Ms. Deaf Texas, I wasn’t sure what to do. I couldn’t sing or dance! I wanted something special that was originally from Texas. I researched Deaf Culture to see if there was anything related to Texas. Then I came across Erastus “Deaf” Smith, a Deaf hero from Texas. While researching history for Erastus ‘Deaf’ Smith, I learned that a county in Texas is named after Deaf Smith.

As I studied history, I learned about Deaf Smith’s family. He married a Mexican widow, and they had four children. That was when I decided to dress as his wife with traditional Mexican clothing. I went downtown to San Antonio’s El Mercado and bought a green Mexican skirt and white top. My hair was braided so I looked like a Mexican woman from the 1800s! I had an excellent tutor, Brain Barwise, who helped me prepare my presentation in ASL, American Sign Language.

During Miss Deaf Texas for my talent, I performed a factual story, a poem I wrote, on how Deaf Smith was brave to infiltrate within the Mexican camp to determine military strategies and to help Texas win the battle. Deaf Smith had a keen sense of what was happening, so he was able to learn where the Mexicans were going to move next.

I learned that Deaf Smith became deaf after birth due to childhood disease. I became deaf around 9 months old. My parents think that it was due to a 103 degree fever; my father put me into a tub of ice to get my fever down. I am profoundly deaf; I wonder if I would have any hearing if he had not put me into the tub.

I learned Smith initially did not want to get involved with the wars; he didn’t want to pick sides. Unfortunately, he was forced to pick a side after the Mexicans refused to let him enter San Antonio to visit his wife and daughters. Then Smith joined forces with General Sam Houston.

Researching historical records, Deaf Smith seems to be a fair and neutral person. When I spoke to people originally from Mexico about the Texan Revolution, they tell me Texas was stolen from them. I can understand from their perspective; it was originally Mexico. I learned Deaf Smith was an excellent scout. He knew shortcuts, which later helped him to defeat the Mexican forces. He died November 30, 1837; his Richmond monument says “Deaf Smith, The Texas Spy.”

I think that once someone loses a sense, his other senses become stronger. Even though I do not hear well, I am able to see better in my peripheral vision and be more observant of my surroundings. Erastus Smith mastered lip reading in both English and Spanish. This is quite a feat! I am still learning to master English with lip-reading skills!

Many people aren’t aware that English has a lot of phonemes, which represents sound. A Lamar University professor stated English itself is 80 percent phonemical, which is very difficult on deaf people. We rely on content to see the difference between moat and boat, which looks identical on the lips. Many English words appear similar on the lips. I have heard that an effective lip-reader understands only 40 percent of what is said. I believe that statistic because if I had to rely on lip reading alone (without my hearing aid), I would be more lost.

It is really important for me to use my hearing aid to hear the difference between moat and boat. So, I was very impressed when I learned Deaf Smith lip-read two languages!

My husband is currently a Spanish instructor. When I have seen him speak Spanish, I am lost. I understand only basic Spanish words (hola, como estas? and muy bien). I have watched the actors and actresses in Spanish soap operas; their lips are moving so fast! It seems like Spanish is a fast language!

Erastus “Deaf” Smith is truly a chameleon to learn dual languages and to become a hero for the Deaf!

Monette adds: And for the hearing, too.

 

About Monette:

Monette Benoit, B. B.A.,
Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, Columnist
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test-Prep for the Court Reporting, CART/Captioning Industry

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, Monette’s Musings

Court reporting veteran, author, instructor, publisher, public speaker, Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Customized information; test-prep for the court reporting, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) captioning industry; tutoring, coaching; articles; academic books; and CATapult dictionary building lexica.

98% successful pass – 29 years, counting – with Purple Books. Prepared by Experienced Educators & Working CART Captioners, Court Reporters. Purple Books has the largest test-prep for NCRA’s RPR, RDR; State CSRs; and NY’s Civil Service exams.

Purple Books Complete SetPurple Books Trio Set

Purple Books updated textbook, workbook, companion guide used by schools & candidates, covers all elements tested by NCRA’s RPR, RDR; State CSRs, NY’s Civil Service exams.

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Coaching and tutoring topics include: Motivational and time-management skills; Process learning for more effective retention; Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills; and much more.

Purple Books updated textbook, workbook, and companion guide are used by schools and testing candidates. Material covers all elements tested by NCRA’s RPR, RDR; State CSRs, NY’s Civil Service exams.

Monette Benoit assists court reporting students and reporters to earn new certifications and to advance careers.

Named the ‘Court Reporting Whisperer’ by students, she may be reached: monette.purplebooks@crrbooks.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

26 Aug 2008

Laney’s Universe; Always An Adventure, CART, Captioning

Laney’s Universe; Always An Adventure, CART, Captioning – 2003
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Each year, for three years, I’ve written about Laney Fox. I am a court reporter, CART provider, instructor, private tutor, coach, who has had the honor of working and laughing with Laney Fox.

We met “in the trenches” when Trinity University requested classroom CART services, communication access realtime translation (voice-to-text) services for Latin. (Many people also refer to serve this classroom CART as ‘captioning’ by captionists.)

Laney entered her class after I had arrived. I am a court reporter, instructor and tutor. I introduced myself on my laptop screen, using my steno machine.

No, I did not know Latin.

The only Spanish I knew (working in criminal court as a court reporter) was: “Guilty or Not Guilty? Have a seat over there.”

Prior to receiving CART, Laney attended all her classes as ‘oral deaf’, reading teachers’, students’ lips.

As a college student, she lived in the dorm for three years, sharing many experiences with me. Her roommates were not deaf.

Some events are comical, as she ‘is’ deaf. Others are typically normal. My favorites? I can’t share, but I’ve had lots of giggles, listening.

When we first met, though, deaf since childhood, Laney had enrolled in a sign language class to ‘better understand’ deaf culture.

She spoke during NCRA’s (National Court Reporters Association) San Antonio convention. Laney was my guest at the NCRF fundraiser when Laurel Eiler, NCRA president, arranged for a hypnotist to entertain guests. Reporters graciously moved away from the center, first row, so Molly Sheridan could interpret. (Laney could not read lips when ‘backs’ were turned to the audience; Laney’s ‘choice’ was an ASL interpreter.)

She’s volunteered to help children, elderly, deaf, HOH (Hard of Hearing), and Laney’s love for animals initially directed her towards pre-med vet studies.

Laney Fox competed in the Miss Deaf Texas Beauty Pageant and was first runner-up.

As I tease her, no dust collects on Laney’s sneakers.

We keep in touch via email, data beepers, friends, interpreters, special events.

We had not seen other in a while, and we met for lunch. When I arrived, Laney was outside, arms extended, gesturing. A mature man was to her left. Two men wearing faded cowboy hats, dusty blue jeans and mud-caked boots, stood near Laney. I parked, sprinted to Laney.

She pointed to the man: “He hit my car!”

I looked to the two men, tilting my head.

Laney said, “I want to know what they’re staring at!”

I roared with laughter; they departed.

The man who ‘hit’ her car was attempting to leave, without stopping. He repeated: “I didn’t do any damage.”

Laney, red-faced, clearly upset, clearly did not share his opinion. I ‘signed’ (ASL) to her, spoke to him.

He did not want to write his name, address.

Finally, I said to the man wearing a hearing aid in each ear: “She’s deaf. Let’s let her parents decide what needs to be done here.”

His reply, “Oh, I didn’t know ‘that’!” He complied with my request. Then he exited, in his car, via the ‘entrance’.

Laney and I rolled our eyes, entered the restaurant, arm-in-arm.

After a wonderful lunch, Laney stood first.

A man approached behind her saying, “excuse me”, several times. Then he exhaled loudly.

I remembered not to roll my eyes, smiled, softly said, “She’s deaf.”

He replied, “Oh, I’m sorry.”

I answered, “That’s okay. It’s not your fault.” Laney and I howled.

I told Laney I was going to put the ‘stupid zone’ comments in this article; she agreed.

At our cars, the waitress ran toward Laney: “Here’s your keys! You won’t get far without these!” She held Laney’s car keys high into the air.

I shook my head, teasingly slapped Laney. As usual, ‘moments’, any occasion, and lunching with Laney is never boring.

I am eagerly looking forward to your graduation party, Laney. I know it won’t be dull or uneventful.

Thank you for sharing with NCRA. Thank you for permitting me to ‘collect’ memories, moments, I can hold close to my heart. I am so proud of you.

And you still owe me money for all the parking meters when you did not bring ‘change’.

It’s truly been a privilege to have provided CART for you and also to have been befriended by you, Laney Fox, my adventurous friend.

Laney’s 2003 update:

“I recently saw Monette. We chatted, dined and laughed. It was wonderful to see her. We had not seen each other for months. But I felt honored that Monette asked me to type up something for her national NCRA JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, column, article. I just dyed/trimmed my hair tonight and I feel ‘new!’

“This past summer I had a volunteer internship at DeafWay (an international conference), which was such an enriching experience! I flew to Washington D.C. and stayed with friends for two weeks.

“I opted to volunteer 40-something hours, which meant that I had to get up at 6 A.M. to get on the subway, to arrive to the location at 7 A.M. I stayed up every night, meeting new people from all over the world! I learned how to communicate with other people who did not speak English. I gestured, motioned and pointed to try to get my points clearly.

“It is amazing on how two people from differing cultures are able to find something in common with each other by conversing for several minutes. I attended multiple panels. I learned such an array of diverse information. I also watched international plays, which gave me opportunities to see their own ‘world’ from their performances. I attended museums. This afforded me a greater knowledge of deaf history.

“However, one of my best experiences at DeafWay is when I volunteered all day to help people to ‘know their way around’. I realized that nearly 10,000 deaf people had come across the world to ‘bond’ with others, and I am proud that I was part of this unique experience.

“Now I am taking 15 hours at Trinity University (and night classes at SAC, San Antonio College, for sign language and I’m learning Spanish!).

“I have remote CART for most of my university classes. I have onsite CART for Greek. Wow, I must have given the CARTers a run for their money when they had to CART for Latin (for my first three years) and now Greek (for my senior year).

“It was a challenge for each of us, Monette and I, to work together as a team for Latin. When I enrolled in Greek, I was fortunate, since the CARTer for my class had already worked with a student in a Greek class. It always helps when the CARTer is familiar with the language!

“I am currently volunteering at the San Antonio Southwest Biomedical Center. I am with the Enrichment Program. We are constantly trying to find ways to improve the quality of the primates’ lives. I aid by observating, building enrichment items and analyzing the data. This volunteer position has been very educational because I am able to determine whether I want to work in this field.

“Last year, I worked in the San Antonio Zoo as an aid to the zookeepers. These volunteering internships are always helpful to me; each allows me to experience their jobs temporarily.

“After I graduate, I am planning to take the GRE and to volunteer part-time. I will probably take a couple classes at a community college. I am thinking about taking carpentry! I need to know how to build a birdhouse (or a bathouse?), so I may take the class. I’ll let you know if the birds accept my birdhouse. (smile)

“Now, after all these volunteering experiences, I am planning to apply to the Peace Corps and Americorps for two years. I have always loved volunteering. I would be thrilled if I could head down to Africa for two years, but we’ll see how everything goes. Wish me luck!”

Monette — PS: Two days after I submitted this article to my NCRA JCR editor, I ‘beeped’ Laney to remind her that “Survivor” would be televised one evening prior to its usual schedule. We have been watching Christy Smith, the oral deaf contestant.

Laney responded immediately: “Thanks for letting me know, Monette. I locked myself out of my car … but it is such a wonderful day. Are you taking a break now? Go for a walk. Hugs.”

This young lady often reminds me to stop my ‘busy-world’, to eat properly and to not work so hard. With the Iraq war starting today and the state of events around the world, I believe we all need a person like Laney Fox who can share such pure moments in realtime. And, yes, I did go that walk. Thanks for the reminder, Laney.

Monette may be contacted: 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

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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!

22 Aug 2008

Hear’s Laney: 2007 CART and Captioning Update


Hear’s Laney: 2007 CART and Captioning Update
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.


May 2000, my NCRA
JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, column ran Mark Cuss Said to the Nymphs, “The phone rang Friday, 2:30. ‘Would you realtime a class? We need you Monday. It started two months ago. Oh, it’s Latin.’ Monday morning, the university student arrived, looked at me, my equipment near her seat, and stopped. I wrote, ‘My name is Monette. I’ve been asked to help you. Today will be the worst day. We’ll work as a team. I promise I’ll get better.’ I began Latin; Callisto and nymphs were having a metamorphosis over the birth of Arcas, Juno and constellations …”

June 2000, I detailed Laney’s Latin: Hearing Not Required about Laney’s experiences as an oral deaf college student, learning sign language, receiving CART. Born hearing, Laney became deaf at 13 months. She mainstreamed in fourth grade after nine years of oral education. I knew more sign language, deaf culture than she when we met. Oh, how I enjoyed watching Laney’s world expand; her responses receiving CART. I also introduced Laney to deaf in San Antonio, my friends, companions. They loved her!

March 2002, Laney’s Luminous Life profiled Laney becoming Miss Deaf Texas First Runner-Up. I was in Florida, a sign interpreter in San Antonio phoned, reading text messages from deaf onsite, all realtime updates, as Laney competed in Austin. We ooh-ed and ahhh-ed as a team while she competed. Laney portrayed the wife of Deaf Smith, who lived in San Antonio, assisted Sam Houston in his victory with in Battle of San Jacinto, immediately after Alamo battle.

June 2003, Laney: Always An Adventure featured Laney as she graduated, volunteering with DeafWay, the zoo, observing primates and goals become a veterinarian. Each article is listed www.CRRbooks.com per Laney.

‘Hear’ we are, 2007. One Monday morning, here in Texas, there was an email from Laney. I just knew this email would be entertaining.

“Hi, Monette! I often wonder how you are! I’m married to a wonderful man, Tim Smith. I have so much to tell you; we bought a house. I’m learning about remodeling. I learned how to take laminated floor off and how to add them.

I’m working as a teacher, completing my second year! I’m hoping to become a school counselor, but I must teach three years. I will teach another year, then head to Gallaudet University to get an Educational Counseling degree. That may be my second masters! That’s my plan.

I have a Masters in Deaf Education from Lamar University. My husband has a Masters in Modern Language. I’m actually using sign now since I’m a teacher at a school for the deaf.

I met Tim at Camp Summit. Tim oversaw all male unit leaders/counselors. He wanted to learn sign language; I was happy to be his tutor.

I found you, Monette, when I Googled myself. I was surprised to see my name on an ASL university site talking about Deaf Smith. The author discovered I performed a poem on Deaf Smith for my Ms. Deaf Texas talent. This was pretty ironic because I dressed up to be Mrs. Deaf Smith. Now my last name is Fox-Smith. Who would have thought I would have Smith in my name? Then, I came across your articles. I realized how much I missed talking to you!

Here is my update: We married May 26, 2006; we eloped. Monday we decided to marry that Friday. We called our families about date, time. My family drove Friday afternoon to see us married in a courthouse. We loved the stress-free environment!

Let me rewind and give you an update since Trinity University. I graduated May 2003. (Laney and I wrote an update after her graduation.)

A friend encouraged me to go to Camp Summit. I was hired as “unit leader.” I met Tim there. I fell in love, moving to Dallas with him. I looked for a job, worked as a substitute teacher.

I received a job offer from Texas School for the Deaf, TSD (Austin), to work as a teacher aide. I decided this would be a good experience for me, so we began a long-distance relationship.

I lived in Austin with a friend. There I worked with an amazing teacher in the Special Needs Department! I decided I wanted to become a teacher.

I was accepted by Lamar University. I attended Lamar for about one year and a half taking as many courses as I could. I got lucky, received a rare summer internship! I worked at the National Deaf Academy in Mount Dora, Florida! What an amazing experience working with special children for ten weeks.

Tim visited; he fell in love with that town. I received a possible job offer, but there wasn’t any university nearby. Tim wanted to continue teaching. Instead we went back to Austin; I graduated August 2005.

I went back to TSD to work as a teacher! It was a good year for me. I was with Tim, seeing old faces at TSD. I met teacher aids who told me they wanted to become teachers. I told them they could become certified teachers within a year and half! In fact, I encouraged one deaf teacher aide now attending Lamar. We always need more deaf teachers, so that was really cool! To share my story and experience with another and inspire them to go back to school was really rewarding.

Tim and I moved to be close to his work (college instructor). We bought a house.

Tim proposed Christmas Eve. I kinda knew right before he proposed because he got all formal. He was like “when I first met you …” I knew instantly. I couldn’t wait until he finished. I wanted him to finish what he was saying, so I felt I had to pretend I didn’t know what he was doing! I got all nervous! I was sorta in shock. “Wow, he proposed to me …” Of course, the answer was yes. He proposed while hiking at a park. We love the outdoors.

Now I work at a charter school. I teach 4th/5th math, 7th math, 8th math, 3rd/6th/7th Language Arts (LA), 10th LA, and 9th LA. It is really nice to work with deaf. I have hearing students, as well.

I am getting more and more involved with the deaf community. My main communication now is usually sign. I talk to Tim with my voice; Tim signs back, which is pretty funny!

People watching get confused who is deaf or hearing! Recently, a cashier thought I was hearing, Tim was deaf. She talked to me, so I would interpret to Tim. I turned to my husband asking him what she said. Tim interpreted for me. It was really funny to see her expression!

I also tutor, teaching sign. One student decided to quit work, return to college to become an interpreter! I told her about CART; she hasn’t seen CART in action yet. But I hope that she will be open-minded about interpreters and CART like you are! It is important to have everyone working together as a family!

Monette: Next we’ll share more with another article and add Erastus Smith, aka, Deaf Smith, huge hero in deaf culture – especially in Texas. We’re family, and Laney is off to the library tonight, Monday, after work, to ensure we have all details correct.

Monette may be contacted: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

21 Aug 2008