April 12, 2004
I saw trouble coming a mile away during my German class while we were going over discussion questions for the genitive case. Question #8 was Wer ist der populärste Politiker Ihres Landes? (Who is your country's most popular politician?) Of course the Conflicted Reservist was first to insist that it is Kerry, bringing up the "fact" that Kerry is a Vietnam hero and Bush was AWOL. And then an amazing thing happened.
There's a woman in our class from Italy. I believe she's married to a soldier, so I'm sure she's legally an American, but she proved herself a grokker tonight. She put the Reservist in his place faster than I could bat an eye. She turned to him and rattled off facts about Kerry's Vietnam record -- his Purple Hearts, his relationship with Fonda, his throwing away "his" medals -- that brought a look of utter confusion to the Reservist's face. It was immediately apparent that for all his grandstanding and prattling on and on about Kerry, he actually knows nothing of Kerry's background. Another soldier listened to my classmate's rant in disbelief; "no way" was the expression used.
I learned two things from that exchange tonight: I'm not as alone as I sometimes feel, and most people don't know the first thing about current events.
And that Italian woman is now my favorite classmate. As she turned back to her German worksheets in disgust, she said, "You need to do some research before you start talking."
Posted by: Oda Mae at April 12, 2004 06:04 PM (B5XDK)
Posted by: Shannon at April 12, 2004 07:17 PM (en3Op)
Posted by: david at April 13, 2004 09:13 AM (s7Ho8)
Posted by: Dominic at April 15, 2004 06:22 AM (0h0BM)
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