Chapter 5 Voice Problems

After about 3 months of lolling around I decided to apply for a different job, knowing that I could not go back to such an intensive computer based job. I got an interview for the very first job I applied for. The interview consisted of a discussion with other interviewees and then a face to face interview with a panel. The RSI pain was made worse by the stress of the experience. I could feel it running all the way up my hands to my elbows. A few days later I was told that I’d got the job.

I was quite concerned about aggravating the RSI by using a computer, so I declared it as a disability. To start with in the new job it was quite tricky because even turning a piece of paper could cause twinges.  I’d heard a lot about voice recognition software as an alternative to typing and so I asked if I could use that at work. I’d thought I’d be really careful by just using it for short periods.

The software I was using was called Dragon Naturally Speaking, but it wasn’t really that natural at all.  I kept having to repeat words and say these obscure commands like ‘correct that ‘ and ‘scratch that’.  The manager was sitting in the office with me and she would parrot these expressions as I said them for a bit of a laugh. Some days there were lots of people sitting near me in the office and the microphone would pick up there voices and scramble up the text. I’d read that it was important to speak in a relaxed voice and I carried over this voice to other times when I was talking.

Then one Saturday afternoon I met up with a friend in the Weatherspoon pub by the railway station for a drink.  I suddenly became aware of the background noise and that I was struggling to project my voice over it.

It’s strange but when you lose one thing then that seems like the end of the world, until you lose something else and then you look back with nostalgia to the time when you had what you have lost. It’s all a bit relative.

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