I may as well enter the new year purged. It’s time to share one of my most embarrassing moments:
The time is probably high school; the location is a mystery. Ebullient, I see two people facing each other in a crowd, goofing around. No idea what they’re doing. I come up and join in the fun, making puppets with my hands, as they are. One looks irritated and may try to push me away, but with no real violence. Idiotically, I resist, persisting with my naked-hand puppets.
As I give up and walk away, perhaps because their rebuke was entirely silent, perhaps because even I can’t be that stupid for more than a few days at a time, I realize they are hearing impaired and speaking in sign language. I had just run up and gratuitously mocked them.
I have never told anyone this before. It still ranks as among the worst, cruelest things I’ve ever done. Since there’s no one to apologize to directly, a more or less public statement will have to do.