After months of gentle urging from his wife, a man finally had to admit he needed a hearing aid.

The audiologist confirmed it. “How much do they cost?” he asked her.

“As you might expect,” she said, “There’s quite a wide range. They run from $2.00 to $2,000.”

“Wow, the low end is lower than I would have ever guessed!” he said. “Let’s see the $2.00 model.”

The woman gave a knowing nod, and pulled it out of the closest drawer. “You just stick this button in your ear and run this little string down to your pocket,” she said.

“How does it work?” the man asked.

“Oh now, come on! For $2.00 it doesn’t work!” she said.

“I don’t understand,” the man said, but the woman had heard that before.

“When people see it on you,” she said, “they know to talk louder.”