SI Vault
Leigh Montville
October 29, 1990
Labiomancy is dirty work when viewing jocks on TV
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October 29, 1990

Stop Reading Those Lips!

Labiomancy is dirty work when viewing jocks on TV

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"It was all a big joke," the lip-reader says. "Roger, in fact, told a joke. The one about the moron tiptoeing past the medicine chest because he didn't want to awaken the sleeping pills. The umpire said, 'Get outta here.' Roger misinterpreted the remark and left. You got it all wrong again."

I say I know what I know. I can stare at a guy's mouth and know what he's saying. Especially with the bad words. I'm not looking for them. I simply see them when they come out.

"O.K.," the lip-reader says. "When was the last time you were asked, specifically, to read someone's lips?"

I think. I say George Bush, campaigning for president, asked me to read his lips. He said, "Read my lips."

"And what do you think he said?" the lip-reader says.

I say, "No new taxes."

"There you go," the lip-reader says. "He couldn't have said that, could he? You just don't get it right."

I say that I thought I did, but I guess not.

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