You know how you have those moments when you realize you have been harboring a misconception. For instance, when you realized the lyrics to Becks “Loser” were, “Soy un perdedor,” and not “someone get the door.” You think, “Gosh, how many people heard me sing that!” Then you feel embarrassed for the next five minutes, before you realize no one cares. (This example is, sadly, a true story. And, I speak Spanish!!)
I had one of these moments today, only the misconception was much bigger and far more embarrassing than song lyrics. I am still deeply ashamed.
It all happened this morning over breakfast. Nick and I were discussing the reasons people might leave MIT, and we got around to discussing the campus. Nick mentioned that it is known for being slightly depressing. At this point, I interrupted, “Wait. Where is MIT? “
Nick looked at me incredulously, “Massachusetts. That’s why it’s called the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”
My face must have been bright red, because he asked, “Wait. Where did you think it was?”
“I don’t want to say.”
“Michigan? Montana? Maine?” his voice becoming higher pitched and astonished with each guess.
“Texas,” I squeaked.
“What! TEXAS! HOW? WHY!”
“I don’t know, I just always thought it was someplace in middle-of-nowhere Texas.”
“What did you think MIT stood for?!”
“ Math. Institute. Texas.”
“That doesn’t even make sense!”
“ Of Texas. Of! Oh, I don’t know, I just always thought they were in cahoots with the calculator people.”
“You mean Texas Instruments?!”
“Oh GAWWD. I am so, soo stupid.” I then sunk under the table to eat my waffles in shame.
To be fair, I didn’t think that the students made the calculators. I just thought it was all done in the same space somewhere in mid-Texas. –-Nope. I am sorry, There is no saving this.
I am disgusted with myself.