Andrew and I went to a dinner honouring this year’s graduate students at BYU. We got there and spent a few minutes looking around, trying to find someone, anyone, that we knew. If I had thought about it beforehand I could have arranged to meet some friends there…not that it would have been horrible to sit anywhere randomly and strike up a conversation but neither Andrew or I are all that outgoing so it would have certainly been painful.
Finally Andrew saw someone he knew—a girl from his “team” in the MPA program. They waved at each other and we walked over to where she was standing.
“Hey!” she said, “Is this your wife?”
“It is,” Andrew said, “Nancy, this is Rachel. Rachel, this is Nancy.”
“Nice to meet you,” I said.
Then we got an impromptu introduction to another couple at the banquet that happened to be standing by Rachel.
“Hello, I’m Sharon Samuelson,” said Sharon Samuelson.
“Nice to meet you,” I said, shaking her hand.
Then I took a closer look at the man accompanying her. He looked oddly familiar but I simply couldn’t place him anywhere. I looked at his name tag to see if his first name would trigger anything but instead of a first name his nametag merely read “President.”
“I’m President Samuelson,” he said, taking my hand.
I almost said, “Yes, we’ve met before,” but I’m quite sure he wouldn’t remember that so instead I deftly replied, “Nice to meet you.”
Yes, we adroitly managed to interrupt the Samuelsons from being escorted to their table by Rachel, who is in the Graduate Student Council. It was a little more than embarrassing. I mean, usually you have to stand in line to shake the president’s hand—I’ve only done it a couple of times after convocations.
Perhaps this meeting will stick more firmly in his mind, although I’m sure he’s been interrupted before. I know it will stick in my mind. I’m not sure when the last time was that I’ve been quite that embarrassed.
We hurriedly found seats after our run-in with the president, sitting by no one we knew. Luckily we were found by our old high school friend, Aaron McKnight, who now has a 4-year-degree, a beautiful wife, and a darling baby girl (it’s amazing how much a few years can change a person) so we didn’t have to chat up complete strangers.