Once upon a time, I could have been considered a trendsetter, but mostly I was considered a freak.
Nowadays, I consider myself a freak magnet, but mostly it is I who is the freak.
Admitting is the first step, right?
Today, I woke up in Kansas (at least I remembered how I got here) and worked for a couple of hours before my presence was required at the University of Kansas for an Architecture and Interior Design Career Fair. My plan was good, my plan was in action. Then, I lost track of time; my computer clock is on Pacific Time and I’m in the Central Time Zone. I was dressed and ready to go when I realized the time confusion. I wasn’t late, but I was rushed getting out the door. Read: Agh! Panic! Grab and go, go, go!
I made it to where I needed to be and quickly began setting up my booth, noting that everyone was already at lunch. Dang it! I hate missing lunch but more importantly, I didn’t want to miss the Dean’s speech on the direction of the architecture program as well as networking opportunities to meet and lure people away from other companies, typical recruiting stuff.
I’m directed to the ballroom for lunch and the tables are filled with career fair firm representatives. Believing that I’m late, I beeline to the buffet and start loading up my plate. There are 7 or 8 servers standing around and I make the comment that the buffet looks untouched, they must have just restocked. They look at me like I am a freak and say that I’m the first one to go through the buffet line. So much for being late. In Kansas, apparently, you wait until you’re invited to eat or something, I’m still not sure what happened. One of the servers, noticing my confusion at what all these people are waiting for, encouraged me to “be the trendsetter.” I concurred and replied that I was going to get this party started. The party didn’t take my lead, though they did watch me walk with loaded plate to my seat. Nobody moved. The people at my table only commented that the food looked good, yet didn’t move. The Dean entered the room shortly thereafter and asked “Why isn’t anyone eating? It’s a buffet, please help yourselves.”
Was everyone being polite? Are they just dumb? Am I a freak or just an overachiever? Whatever the reason, it was the most odd, Twilight Zone surreal lunch I’ve every experienced.
The highlight of my lunch was being introduced to a KU Jayhawk cookie, a butter cookie with dried blueberries, dried cranberries and white chocolate chips to honor their Red and Blue colors. Though the introductions to the fellow career fair firm representatives was not productive the Jayhawk students were smart, talented and impressive. Phew. Mission accomplished.