Which Would You Prefer?
Posted January 20, 2012on:
A friend and I were at a tavern over the weekend. We were meeting in person for the first time, so I chose a place that I have been to before and is close to where he is living temporarily.
We had originally planned to meet at a coffee shop, but we changed up because it was so COLD the day we met and it was easier for my friend to just cross the street.
A tavern meant we could grab a beer together instead of just coffee.
When our waitress came over to take our orders, I stuttered on what I wanted, and she filled in the word for me. No biggie.
My friend blocked and stuttered, and she proceeded to finish the word for him as well. When they were done speaking, I piped up, “Hey,just want you to know, we both stutter, so you may hear a bit of that while we are here today.”
She responded back quickly, “Oh, so what would you prefer? Should I finish the words for you or would you rather I just patiently listen?”
I said I prefer that she be patient and allow me to say my own words, and then I said, “but I can’t speak for my friend. (Looking at him, I asked him) what do you prefer?”
He said, “the same thing, please patiently listen for me to finish my own words.”
I was so impressed with this little 45 second exchange. This waitress showed a respect, tolerance and understanding for difference that we often don’t see.
By bringing it out in the open the way I did (I hope I didn’t embarrass my friend!) we clearly advertised and educated.
And to me anyway, we got the by-product of a greater sense of permission to stutter away. Both of us seemed to stutter more freely for the remainder of our visit there. (Or maybe it was the alcohol. I’m not telling!)
What do you think?