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It was the kind of day that leaves you tired, yet proud. Your arraignment calendar that morning listed fifty-seven cases. Somewhere around your eighth interpretation, your lunch started calling. Now, however, it’s 1:28 p.m. Back to court. As you clear security, the office texts you: Hey, can you head...

Definition of pivotal[1] 1: of, relating to, or constituting a pivot   Autumn is pivotal because it has a “central role, function, or effect” on the rest of the calendar year. Summer has just ended, the winter months are coming, and squirrels everywhere are going crazy making preparations....

Have you ever taken a dash of one language with a sprinkle of another, mixed them together and simmered to taste? Of course you have! You’re bilingual. You’re bound to have stirred your languages together at one point or another. There’s actually a fancy name for...

An open or shut case? A couple of weeks ago, a woman I was interpreting for started chatting with me before an interview, and she asked me if I had heard about upcoming plans to reopen the courthouse. During this conversation, she shared her view that...

The Couch is a learning place, not only for its contributors but also for our readers who engage in the ensuing discussions. The subject of this month’s Couch is the transition to “normal.” As in-person services gradually resume (or at least are on the horizon), what do...

I was born Puerto Rican. I was actually born in New York, but that doesn’t make me a New Yorker any more than being born in Hawaii or Japan makes my cousins Hawaiian or Japanese just because their military parents happened to be stationed there...

I’m sure most, if not all, of you have heard about emotional vampires or relationship vampires. Those are the people who suck your emotional energy and leave you feeling drained after they’ve been near you for any amount of time. Well, there is something else...

I like being tucked away in some nondescript area of a courtroom, where I can see and hear everyone but no one is paying attention to me, where I can have complete anonymity as my voice flows from a wireless microphone to a receiver in...

Interpreting attorney-LEP client communications is an integral and confidential function of the court interpreter´s job. Due to social distancing, however, the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to restrict attorney-LEP client communications or create unsafe proximity risks for interpreters and their clients. Nonetheless, these bilingual communications can take...

“One moment, the interpreter needs a repetition,” I said in English, followed by “Excuse me, could you repeat that for the interpreter?” in rapid-fire Spanish. It was about fifteen minutes into the interpretation, and the fourth time I had interrupted. I was feeling a bit...