What you heard might not be what was said…

02 Feb


The title also applies to the written word as well.  We all have certain expectations when we hear something, we create a picture in our head based on our biases, and beliefs.  A couple of months ago, I stumbled article that made me try to review why I thought what I did, about a story mom told, and it has nothing to do with adoption.

Backing up a bit: It all started with looking into the history of some salt-glazed crocks that I have.  I wanted to find out how old they were, and if I had made a good deal that day I spotted them in the little antique shop I visited often on my way home from work.  That day, I was getting ready to move into the home I am in now, a bigger home, but lacking in storage areas.  I wandered around the shop and didn’t see anything in particular, so on my way out, I stopped to say thank you to the owners for letting me browse – and there they were, three different Medalta crocks in wonderful condition, 10 gallon with handles, 3 gallon, 1 gallon – and they all had their original lids.  They had just come in and hadn’t even been priced – I took them home.  They are in my kitchen and I’d be lost without them.  (Here is a picture of a 5 gal with handles and lid.)  Anyways…

Now to the story: Mom lived by the ocean growing up, during the depression, long before every home had an electric refrigerator.  That background allowed me to make some fantastic leaps with this very simple story mom tells each time crocks come up in the conversation  How she dreaded when her mom would tell her to go eggs from the crock in the root cellar, how she hated putting her hand into the dark, cold, slippery, slimy water grass.  I made the leap that it was some type of ocean grass and salt water they used back in the old days to preserve the eggs.  I could picture it in my head, it all fit, she lived by the ocean, the ocean water is salty, salt is a preservative, there are grasses in the sea.  Turns out, I was so far off base it wasn’t funny, she wasn’t saying water grass, rather, water-glass which has nothing to do with salt water or grass.  For the record, I can’t imagine preserving eggs that way, if your interested google “water glassing eggs” and you will find some interesting posts on the subject of how they preserved eggs a long time ago – not would I recommend it, or try it, because it sounds terrible, and not so safe to me.  It does make me ever so glad I have always lived in the era of refrigeration where my eggs are kept safe.

I re-learned a valuable lesson though – never assume you know what the other person is talking about, or, describing, or, even that you heard the right words…

Now I’m off to watch a game I am looking forward too – Happy Sunday!


Posted by on February 2, 2014 in Uncategorized


4 responses to “What you heard might not be what was said…

  1. Don't We Look Alike?

    February 3, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    I hope you were happy with that game . . . .
    Old antique shops can be such fun. I hope you still have some thriving ones near you. And you’re right about hearing things wrong. People often hear what they want to hear, too.


    • Don't We Look Alike?

      February 3, 2014 at 3:15 pm

      Or maybe what they expect to hear.


      • TAO

        February 3, 2014 at 3:30 pm

        Luanne – too funny, I forgot I added the part about the game! Been a die-hard Seahawks fan since the 80’s (I think)…it was the best outcome – yet I felt sorry for the other team, that had to be so hard because nothing was going right for them from the starting play (yes, I saw every play), and I know they are so much better than that.

        Not a lot of antique shops close by which is good because I find it hard to resist. If I had my way the entire house would be antiques (a lot are)… They are priceless to me, and I just wish I knew all the stories they were part of.

        I think in adoption – especially listening to adoptees they come with expectations of what they will hear…


        • Don't We Look Alike?

          February 3, 2014 at 8:22 pm

          I agree about the expectations for sure.
          It seems as if a lot of antique stores are either going out of business or don’t have very good offerings inside because so much is being sold on ebay. One thing I don’t like about that is that fragile vintage and antique items often get damaged in shipping when they are sold through ebay.



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