Actually, I guess it had to happen sooner or later. With all the random times that I’ve been signing to myself as I walk on the road, it makes sense that one day, a Deaf person would see me and we’d start a conversation. It happened today. It was a cool random occurrence.
It turns out, though, that he was asking for money. He had a paper with this written request to show people. (The paper said he was asking for $500, even $1000. Wow.) I didn’t have any on me, but I was actually was told by my JSL teacher that the Deaf community doesn’t like when people give money to Deaf who beg like that. The idea is that those people present the community as disabled, handicapped, in need of hand-outs.
While I understand that, it’s hard for even hearing people to get jobs nowadays. Deaf, with their lack of available education, their poor command of English, and with hearing people’s perceptions of them, have it harder. So, maybe it’s not so cut-and-dry.
Anyway, after such a long time without signing with Jamaican Deaf, it was a refreshing experience, albeit a short one.