Mightier Than The Pen

Making The World A Bitter Place

Typo Results in Drug Users Sent to Diction Counseling

with 5 comments

Macon, Georgia (AP) – Eleven residents of the Macon Metropolitan Area convicted earlier this month of possessing illegal drugs were ordered to report to the Booker T. Washington Community Center this morning to undergo diction counseling. The residents, who each have histories of substance abuse, expression confusion as they were shepherded into a room with Connie Stern, M.A., a vocal coach and diction consultant.

“Let’s start with vowels. Repeat after me, everyone: ah, ee, ay, oh, oo,” she began. “Now ee-NUN-ci-ate, please.”

The convicts, clearly not expecting this environment, initially resisted. “Ma’am, how is this supposed to help us?” asked Ward O’thestate, 26, of neighboring Dry Branch.

“Please, pronounce the ‘w’ in ‘how’,” admonished Stern, “or I shall be forced to report to the court that you are not cooperating.”

Connie Stern (AP)

Several other attendees managed to express their consternation at the turn of events, telling the Associated Press they had been led to believe they would be enrolled in a drug abuse counseling program. But Stern engaged their cooperation throughout the one-hour session, the first of ten scheduled classes on proper vocalization and pronunciation.

“The court clearly sees the need for these citizens to transform the way they communicate as the key to turning their lives around,” Stern said after the session. “I’ve never done anything like this before, but the county clerk called me up saying she had a court order that some convicts undergo diction counseling, and there was my name, right in the phone book. She seemed as surprised as I was, but I’m more than happy to count Bibb County among my clients.”

The participants’ reactions were mixed. “That was, uh, different,” reported Meth Labb, 30, of Warner Robins. “It wasn’t like that the last time I went for counseling, that’s for sure. But it says right here on this form I’m supposed to be here, and I don’t want no more trouble from the court over this. I already got fined for missing a session last time around. Maybe this is the one I missed,” he said, scratching his head.

The participants’ bodies had developed a chemical dependency on certain controlled substances, among them crystal meth, heroin and alcohol. As first- and second-time offenders, their plea-bargain arrangements called for them to undergo counseling to help them overcome that dependency.

The process includes meetings with the families of the participants to engage their cooperation and support, and Stern has already met with the relatives of those enrolled. “I didn’t quite understand what we’re supposed to accomplish here,” said Bee Wildered, the mother of one of the convicts. “But I know the system – you just do like you’re supposed to and they more or less leave you alone when it’s done.”

“Do as you’re supposed to, Mrs. Wildered,” corrected Stern. “And make sure your ‘to’ and ‘you’ rhyme with ‘blue’.”

The participants generally agreed that the first session, at least, featured little of the hostility, browbeating and criticism that they thought they would encounter. “I guess I’ll come back – she’s a nice lady,” said Coe Caine, 19, of Fort Valley. “Man, I’m itching to get back home. Mom, can I have my phone back? I need to call Julie. She said she’d hook me up with some – uh, with some – with some books.”

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Written by Thag

October 17, 2012 at 3:06 pm

5 Responses

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  1. There are some people around where I live that could use this court-ordered diction sentencing. They leave the “g” off of words ending in “ing” in addition to the violations you mention. I’m surrounded by them!

    Lorna's Voice

    October 17, 2012 at 9:31 pm

    • Yeah, it’s enough to drive you to…wait a minute…


      October 17, 2012 at 9:52 pm

  2. It makes perfect sense, the drug addled seldom use good diction.


    October 18, 2012 at 12:45 am

    • This is the same place that was hit by an outbreak because of a cholerical error.


      October 18, 2012 at 6:55 am

  3. what swag really means


    May 29, 2014 at 9:34 am

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