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  • [music plays] Here's a fascinating question I get a lot.

  • Does it bother me that I don't know if anyone is watching me

  • or staring at me. It's funny when I walk around with my

  • cane, I do, I feel like everybody is watching me.

  • I feel like if there are people around they are watching me. And simply because

  • there's not a lot of blind people around and for a lot of people

  • I might be the first time they've ever seen one.

  • So I do, I think people

  • are watching me a lot. And if the roles were reversed

  • and I had never seen a blind person walking with cane, you better believe I'd

  • be watching. I don't think that's rude but I think

  • it's just simple curiosity more than anything. Now, this is the thing,

  • I don't know if I understand the difference between watching and staring.

  • I know that staring is a bit more rude than watching.

  • Parents always say, "Don't stare... that's not polite, don't stare."

  • But what's the difference between staring and watching. I would think

  • that to watch something is okay but to stare

  • means your eyes are wide open and you're just concentrating on

  • this one thing and you're just transfixed if you will.

  • I imagine people do both to me. I think people are looking at me

  • because I'm walking with a white cane. I think people are looking because I'm not quite

  • walking in a straight line. You know.

  • Or maybe I'm about to walk into something. Now, do I

  • notice it in a restaurant for example, if I'm sitting there eating?

  • I might not notice that. Let's say I'm in a place

  • by myself. I'm at a booth alone, okay. And I'm having

  • a little lunch and if there's somebody staring at me from

  • two - three tables away I have no idea. But if I'm with somebody

  • and we're having lunch together and then afterward we're talking

  • and he says, "You know, the person was staring at you

  • for the entire time and it made me uncomfortable."

  • Wow. Okay, I get that too.

  • [music plays] A part of this question is about

  • can I feel the eyes on me.

  • Like I've heard people say that they're burning a hole in the back of my head from

  • looking at me so much, right. But I think that's a sighted thing.

  • I don't think I would be able eyes on me

  • because I don't know what that is. How could I know?

  • It's got to be a sighted thing. I don't think I've ever felt eyes on me

  • before. I don't think I've ever been in a situation

  • where I've been like, [gasp] "I know everybody is watching me."

  • You know, staring at me. I always assume that

  • because I'm different and because people have never seen it

  • and they want to see if I can make it and all that stuff.

  • Now, if I was walking around and there were 20 hands on me

  • I'd feel that. I know what that would be like.

  • You know, people trying to stop me and push me and pull me and the whole thing.

  • But, with eyes I don't really get that.

  • [music plays] When there are sighted people around,

  • I'm not quite sure who's watching all the time, you know,

  • so I have to be careful. So for example, if somebody comes over, if I live with

  • somebody or that kind of thing. I'm afraid to

  • maybe pick my teeth in front of somebody right

  • because I don't know if they're going to see that, or touch my nose

  • or my ear or some weird thing.

  • You know... I never know. And I understand that

  • people aren't watching everything

  • but are you going to see this little moment. I never quite know.

  • Whether or not somebody's watching.

  • But I'm very self conscious when there's sighted people around unless

  • you're in another room. If we're yelling across the house to each other, then I know

  • that things are cool and I could do whatever I have to do.

  • And you can't see it, but in the same room...

  • I got to be careful. Sometimes I

  • might goof it up. Where I'll be talking to somebody and they're

  • out of the room but I guess they're straight ahead and they can still see into

  • the room. Or, the other way around. You know, that they're

  • around a corner and I think, "well, you sound so close. You should be

  • able to see this." But I don't understand that you can't see around the corner.

  • That happens too. Another thing

  • that happens when I'm around sighted people is I can't tell what they're doing

  • all the time. If I just start to talk to somebody and they don't

  • respond I'm going, "I know you're still here."

  • "Oh, yeah, you might be on your phone or something like that."

  • It happens all the time. I never quite know what

  • sighted people are doing. There are times when I'll be talking to somebody

  • and maybe they get distracted or have to go away

  • for a quick second while I'm talking to them and I'm just sitting there talking going,

  • "Hello. [gasp] Oh, you really did leave."

  • "Wait, I'll be right back!"

  • And that's a time where I thought they were right there looking at me.

  • Totally engaged in what I had to say. And they got distracted

  • and had to leave. Isn't it funny. I'm talking about sighted

  • people watching me and then sighted people not even looking.

  • It's very hard to know.

  • [music plays] Just because I'm blind people think that I

  • can't really stare at somebody, right, but I do.

  • It's not staring with my eyes, but you better believe

  • I'm checking people out. I listen to conversations.

  • I just start to zero in on a conversation. For example,

  • if we're having lunch or something like that. And there's somebody at the next table talking about

  • something interesting, I am all in. And I'm transfixed

  • just like you would be with your eyes if you were watching somebody.

  • And I'm just all on that conversation.

  • You know, people are like, "Tommy, what are doing?" "Shh, they're talking

  • about something cool over here. Hang on a second."

  • I love that so I'm guilty of it too. And this is why

  • I talk quietly when I'm out.

  • [music plays] Hey, by the way,

  • I want to recommend a channel to you. A couple weeks ago at YouTube Space LA,

  • I happen to meet a lovely couple who have a channel called Wranglerstar.

  • And what these guys did is very cool. They left

  • the city to become modern homesteaders up in the rugged mountains

  • of the Pacific Northwest. These guys do all

  • kinds of outdoorsy stuff. You know, cutting down

  • big trees and building things and putting things together.

  • Just doing it all on their own. It's off the grid stuff

  • and it's amazing and it's honestly stuff I never really knew about

  • before so I'm learning a lot from these guys as well.

  • A couple of the videos I really like, well one of them

  • is where he's talking about these handmade clamps that he uses

  • that are very intricate. Another, he's demonstrating a

  • tractor and how it works, and my favorite talking about

  • these steel pants he wears. I swear to god, he wears metal pants.

  • He also does videos about everything

  • that's going on in the world and stuff that's happening on YouTube like

  • channels getting hacked. He also talks about YouTube ad revenue

  • being cut and even all that stuff that went on with

  • PewDiePie and how Casey Neistat reacted to it and everything.

  • He just brings a real different perspective to it. It's very grounded.

  • I love listening to him talk about it. So check him out.

  • Subscribe to his channel. Look, there's a link right there on the screen

  • and in the description as well. Hey, you got to get me a pair of those metal pants, man.

  • I bet they go with everything.

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A2 US sighted staring people watching talking stare

Can Blind People Feel People Staring At Them?

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    Samuel posted on 2018/02/03
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