Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It's Unbelievable!

I've been at a work conference for the past two days. This one is small and it's afforded me the opportunity to actually talk to some of the faculty members that we organize said institutes for. I ain't gonna lie, a dinner table full of microbiology professors shooting the breeze used to would make me break out into hives and run hiding in the pantry under the rice sacks (ewwww sacks). But I'm discovering that I can generally hold my own even though my end of the conversation is intermittently peppered with phrases such as, "bacteriophages, I'll need to wikipedia that." and "are you gonna eat that?" (speaking of quiche, of course).

At any rate, today while we were chit chatting at breakfast, one of my new ph.d. type friends stopped the conversation with this statement: "WAIT. So how old are you? So far, you've lived in like 400 places and done like 500 things. What's the next little bomb - 'so I was working as a sherpa in nepal while conquering liver cancer and then I taught oprah everything she knows?"

They proceeded to have a 10 minute (ok, more like 3 minute) conversation about how varied my life has been considering I appear to be about 12 years old (that was *sort* of a compliment?) I vehemently explained that I was nearing 33 which didn't seem to make a dent in their assessment of the situation. But I started to feel embarrassed because why can't I just shut up. There is no reason people at a breakfast table at a science society should know the details of my life so easily and really are those details so completely off-beat as to require discussion?

I think they were most weirded out by the seemingly random path of my career from arts to science to arts and back to science and now back to the arts. oh and that part about almost law school. and the foster child. and well, pretty much the whole thing seems kind of ridiculous I'm sure to a ph.d. who made a decision about what to do and then followed through. And now they have some letters and a CV at the same age as me.

But you know what I think? I think if you really ask and really listen, you will discover that every person's story is abnormal. Everyone has a surprise for you, even the people whose lives seem to be scripted and straight shot. So start asking and start believing.

And believe that this guy's hair is REAL.

1 comment:

JonJon said...

Hahahaha! But what about the shirt/robe? That CAN'T be real!