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The Game

At Home

Ben, who is blind, watches football every Sunday at his buddy’s apartment. One afternoon, a new neighbor joined the regular crew.

“I could tell he was wondering: why’s that guy here? He can’t even see the screen.”

Ben was quick to break the ice. He offered the neighbor a seat on the couch, and pointed to the earbud in his right ear. He prefers the radio broadcast over TV, he explained, because it’s much more descriptive.

“I think I changed his mind,” he laughed. “Between my fantasy football stats and my hot wings recipe, it’s pretty clear you don’t need to see the screen to be a real fan.”

CHANGE THE WAY YOU SEE

Explain the location.
Some simple orientation will help your guest feel at home. Phrases such as “the living room has a couch on the left with a coffee table in front of it,” or “the bathroom is to your right,” can be helpful. Eliminate any random obstacles that might pose a tripping hazard.

Describe the food.
If you are serving food and beverages, tell your blind guest what’s on the tray or in the cooler. Also, offer to help fill a plate or refresh a drink.

Use “see” verbs freely.
You won’t offend a blind person if you use visual verbs such as “did you see that,” or “you see what I mean” or “we can watch that later.” People who are blind use these words too.

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BlindNewWorld is sponsored by Perkins School for the Blind, where Helen Keller challenged and dramatically changed society’s perceptions of individuals with disabilities. Founded in 1829, Perkins is the leading global enterprise dedicated to advancing the lives of the young blind population through education, accessibility and innovation.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much” - Helen Keller

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