everywhere i go, i seem to meet the nicest people!
today was no exception.
i was in a doctor’s office, and i met a really sweet nurse named clay. he is actually from texas (is it just my perception, or is it really true that hardly anyone who lives in seattle is actually from seattle?), but he moved here a few years ago. i was asking him what he likes about living here, and he told me one of the cool things is that when you go swimming, you don’t have to worry about snakes in the water.
SNAKES IN THE WATER?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
yes, i know texas has scorpions and big bugs and people with shotguns as ornamentation in their cars. i know that there are snakes in the state, which is one reason that i will probably never visit there. really.
but snakes in the water?
holy crud. that was a new one. that was a completely new level of terror- and he said it all casual, like i would say, “i had egg salad for lunch.”
yes people. not false bravado. not machismo at work. clay likes seattle, because, among other things, we don’t have snakes in the water.
when i was in middle school i had a friend with a water bed, (her family also had a pet python and a pet boa constrictor) and i used to have nightmares when i slept at her house that there were snakes in her bed. so ick. big huge ick. enough said.
so i guess i have yet another reason to appreciate our new hometown…
but back to clay.
i was just reading somewhere- i think it was in a malcolm gladwell book called what the dog saw– or something like that- and he was talking about how first impressions are formed in a nanosecond. even if you get more information, that first impression tends to hold- but get this- it tends to be right! when people were asked to rate teacher performance based on watching clips of them for 20 minutes or 20 seconds or 8 seconds or 2 seconds their ratings tended to be the same- and they were the same generally as people who rated those teachers after having them for an entire semester. wild, huh?
if you ask people to concentrate really hard as they form their initial perception, it throws them off. they attend to the wrong things, and they end up forming the wrong impressions. so if you “go with your gut” you will be right more often than not. (unless you are dealing with a sociopath, i guess…)
so, i can’t really tell you why i liked clay, but i did. he had a mellow vibe, and he was the right combination of put-you-at-ease chatty and don’t-overwhelm-you-by-trying-too-hard. i could see him being the guy you’d want to go for coffee with to just tell him everything that’s going on in your life.
which i didn’t, because i’m so not like that😉
but i did offer to bring him some chicken eggs.
which he was totally jazzed about.
which was exactly the right answer.
because who could not love my chickens?
and i did tell him he had to google the whole garden story as homework.
yes, i give total strangers homework. i guess being a teacher is a hard habit to break.
wouldn’t it be cool if he ended up on this blog?
ok- i’m off to do dishes and clean the kitchen counters.