Saturday, February 16, 2013

Bits and Bikes

Two things that happened last night while I was working the concession stand.

First, I was sharing some info with the other parents working (during a slow time) about the recent interviews I was involved with for high school students who want to study critical languages. There's a program that is all-expenses paid for them to study for a summer session or an entire school year. The critical languages are: Chinese, Korean, Turkish, Arabic, Russian, Tajik, and Hindi. I think it's a great opportunity for kids -- and little known, so I was spreading the word.

One man jumped down my throat saying, "That's just a front for the CIA to get ahold of them and recruit them to work overseas. Critical languages means the countries we're afraid of!"  The guy is built like a mountain, so I sort of stepped back and replied, "No, this is underwritten by the State Department and the goal is to promote future understanding between the countries."

"Nope," he snapped, "I know all about this stuff. One of my daughter's friends did one and the CIA attempted to recruit her. She was smart though, she went into international business instead." He turned away with a note of triumph in his voice.

I couldn't quit at that point. I said, "I think it's a great opportunity for kids -- all expenses paid to learn about another culture and learn another language. I wish I'd known more about it when my daughter was in high school." He snorted at my naivete.

When I got home I was kicking myself for not saying, "There's nothing wrong with working for the CIA.  In the area we live, LOTS of people work for the CIA! It's an honorable profession!"  When I Skyped with my daughter later and told her about it she said, "I'd love to work for them because I want to be part of keeping my country safe."

Thank goodness some of the kids out there aren't paranoid!  Sheesh!

Then a lady who was very upset I was going to ride in the rain and the dark kept telling me I needed to take "spin" class instead of riding outside.  I tried to explain that the reason I ride the bike is because I HATE exercising in a gym. It makes me feel like a hamster on a wheel and there's no amount of hamster food that motivates me to excel. But if I'm outside, breathing clean air, and seeing how even day by day my environment is changing due to the artistry of the Creator, it's a WIN!  She just insisted that I would LOVE Spin class.  Sigh.

1 comment:

The Bug said...

As you know I lean a lot left politically, and I don't know what this guy's problem is, but I think it would be really cool to be recruited by the CIA! I don't have the temperament to actually work for them, but to know that they thought I was good material... And I would LOVE to be able to speak another language!

Boy that lady just didn't get it at all did she? I'm pretty impressed that you cycled home in the rainy/snowy darkness!