Saturday, October 20

"I Used to Be Irish"

In a lot of social or business situations, I feel calm and confident. I like meeting new people, making small talk, discussing a common goal, or exchanging big ideas and even controversial opinions.

But there are moments when, frankly, it all goes down the toilet.

You know those weird interactions? Like when you're in the car, stopped at a red light, and you see someone you sort of know but haven't talked to in years on the sidewalk... and you hope they don't see you. Not because you don't like them, but because if they do see you, then when would you do? You'd wave, but then what? Do you roll down the window and try to "catch up?" When if the light changes five seconds after you start talking? Maybe they're hoping you don't see them either? It's awkward-sauce.

That's one example. Another is, oh, say a short elevator ride. An elevator ride when someone introduces himself and you decide to try to be funny. At a conference when you're both wearing name tags, or something.

Here's a hypothetical example:

Guy in elevator: Are you here for Young One World too?

Me: Yep, hi, I'm Carrie. 

Guy: I'm Colin. Nice to meet you. You going on the river tour?

Me: Yeah, just stopping up at my room first. Still haven't had lunch yet, I'm starving!

Colin: Eh, just grab a couple beers on the walk to the boat. It's faster and better than eating.

Me: Haha, where are you from?

Colin: Ireland (Surprise, surprise).

Me: Oh, of course you'd suggest that then! (Wait, is that an offensive stereotype?)

Colin: laughs

Me: I'm allowed to say that because, um... (I'm Irish? No, that's not correct. My ancestors were Irish? No, that sounds weird. I'm of Irish descent? No, still weird... OMG SAY SOMETHING)... I used to be Irish. (wait, what?)

*elevator door opens*

Colin: laughs, a little less enthusiastically

Me: Okay, bye! (WTF?)

Ah, yes. Making my entrance at the One Young World summit. I followed that debacle with a full on, pregnant lady sprint to said river tour because I thought I lost my phone and had to book it to the parking garage, across the city, and then back again.

In all seriousness, the summit is awesome. The speakers are inspiring and fantastic. The delegates are motivated and extremely well-informed. Side talks tend to focus on foreign policy and sustainable development, and I'm a tad out of my depth but I like to listen! It's a really good experience.

But unfortunately, my mind is more of a sprinter, and this summit is a four-day, non-stop thinking marathon. As the days pass, I feel it looming... the inevitable, even-worse WTF moment. The one where my brain takes a short sabbatical and I'm left with words bouncing around aimlessly, begging to be spoken.

At this point, the less said by me, the better.

1 comment:

  1. Ah. You're just normal :) And I enjoyed reading that story. Reminds me that it's not just me who experiences stuff like this.