The goal of this assignment is to experience what it would be like to lose one or more senses. You will again need to enlist the help of a family member, friend, roommate, etc. Select a place for dinner you have not visited before. It does not need to be expensive! You will need Vaseline, scotch tape, cotton balls, and sunglasses if you normally do not wear glasses. You may experience some self-consciousness with this assignment. Just tell servers/other patrons this is for a school project and imagine how it feels for older people who also lack some of these senses.
Touch – wrap all the knuckles on your fingers/thumbs with scotch tape. This is to simulate the stiffness and restriction of hand arthritis. Use paper tape if you have sensitive skin or a tape allergy.
Hearing – place cotton balls in both ears.
Vision – smear a thin coating of Vaseline on your glasses or sunglasses.
Now go to dinner and please let the friend drive! Observe the experience and record your thoughts and feelings.
Consider these questions:
a) What restaurant did you select and why? Was it easily accessible? Any mobility restrictions? Were the bathrooms close and easy to use?
b) How was the overall ambiance? How was the noise level? Was the lighting adequate? Could you read the menu? Was the font type and text large and legible enough?
c) How was the food and drink? Were you able to enjoy the meal? Would you go back to this restaurant?
d) Describe your overall experience. Were people helpful? Too helpful? Comment on the frustrating and rewarding parts of this assignment. How would rate this assignment? Very enlightening, enjoyable, somewhat enjoyable, somewhat difficult and frustrating, or very difficult and frustrating?
There are no right or wrong answers but a valid assessment of the experience is what matters.
Overall experience and rating of both the restaurant and the assignment answering question d: 6 points
Comprehensive assessment of the experience, environment, and restaurant answering questions a,b, and c: 6 points
Well-written (grammar, citations, organized): 5 points
Able to block all three senses: 3 points
Total: 20 points