As I have previously confessed, Wil Wheaton is one of my celebrity crushes. Yes, I follow him on Twitter, and yes, I read his blog.
A few weeks ago, he had a post about the important role role playing games played in his life. It reminded me how some things just don’t work for me, try as I might. I had lots of geeky friends in the past who were all into D&D. I would sit there and listen, and I even tried it once, but I was banished when I asked what I thought was a simple, basic question: If there is such a thing as magic, why not just cast a spell to end the game?
“They” say that there are no stupid questions. For the most part I agree on this. That doesn’t necessarily mean that there is always a response that could bring understanding on the topic. Simply asking the question the way I did indicated that I would not be able to understand any answer they gave me.
I have often been on the receiving side of these questions.
While I was working at SANYO, I was responsible for getting our raffle gift list approved by our Vice President. He was a very traditional Japanese man. When he looked at the list, his eyes were immediately drawn to the line item “Personal Day.” “Why would someone want a day off with pay?” He was serious. I started to answer a couple times, mouth just gaping open, but stopped myself short. How do you explain that? I simply said, “I will take it off the list.”
My favorite is from last year. I was catching up with a long-time friend. The topic of surfing the internet came up, and I asked what blogs she read. “What’s a blog?” So I explained that they are websites that encourage a conversation and that they could be on a specific topic, a personal blog or …. “Why would anyone want to share their personal information on the internet, and why would anyone read it?” The smarty-pants in me wanted to respond with “Narcissists and Voyeurs” (after I thought of that answer a few days later!), but instead I took the wimpy road out and changed the subject.
Have you ever been asked a question to which there really was no way answer considering how it was raised? Have you ever been “that” person?