Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Same Conversations

Here's an example of three conversations that, since about August, I have found myself having continuously.

1. School

Person: So what are you doing right now?
Me: I'm pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing through the University of Tampa.
Person: Oh! How nice. So why aren't you in Tampa?
Me: It's a low-residency program. I can live wherever I want.
Person: Oh! How nice. So what do you do?
Me: Well, there is a a ten day low-residency period where we attend workshops, seminars, readings, and other organized literary events. For the rest of the semester, we read and write and annotate, and correspond with a mentor.
Person: Oh, so it's only ten days a year?
Me: No, the remaining four months are part of the semester, and that's when I complete the bulk of my work.
Person: Oh, so why aren't you in Tampa?
Me: Because I don't have to be in Tampa.
Person: Oh, but why not?
Me: It's low-residency. I only spend ten days there.
Person: Oh, so how does that work?
Me: *patient repetition as necessary*
Person: So what are you gonna do with that, teach?

2. Work
Person: So what are you doing right now?
Me: I'm a comedy walking guide. I give people guided walks around the city and tell jokes.
Person: Oh...so what do you do?
Me: I take people around St. Augustine and I try to make them laugh. We see sites and monuments and I tell some made-up stories about where they are. It's all in good fun.
Person: That must be a nice gig.
Me: It's actually really difficult.
Person: Why is that?
Me: People don't really know what to expect. In fact, I don't know what people expect.
Person: Yeah, it sounds really strange and different. But really, what do you do?
Me: I sell shoes.

3. Gluten
Person: Why can't your girlfriend eat anything?
Me: She's gluten-intolerant.
Person: Oh, so she's trying a new diet?
Me: No, it's like lactose-intolerance, but gluten is in just about everything. It's mostly found in wheat and soy products.
Person: So why doesn't she like those things?
Me: She loves them, but she can't have them. The gluten eats away at the lining of her small intestine.
Person: Well why does it do that?
Me: Fuck if I know. It's like an allergy.
Person: Oh, well does she want some bread?
Me: She can't have that.
Person: Oh, well does she want some cake?
Me: She can't have that.
Person: It must be frustrating, her being so picky.


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