Sunday, Oct 3, 2010
How do I connect with a group of undergraduates who are at least 26 years older than me? I would say that this group of 3 vet students would be from 22 to 24 years of age and I am 3 times older and how should I carry on an easy conversation with them?
A common interest in veterinary medicine mixed with a sense of humour is the key to interactions during a meal. But it is not easy to make the young adults feel that there is a two-generation gap between them and me making their acceptance to a farewell lunch a boring event with an old foggie.
It was a sunny Sunday afternoon and this Northbridge Chinese Restaurant in Perth was packed. We were given a smaller room away from the noise of the main eating area. The others at the two tables in this room were quietly eating.
It happened that one of the 3 vet students was not aware of my concept of a veterinary talk show that I deemed great for one of the vet students (not present at this lunch and whom I will name as Boo for the purpose of this story) I had shared with the other two yesterday. So I told him.
"You know," I said to this serious young man whom I shall call Ashton. "The name of the veterinary clinic should be 'Boo Clinic.' Dr Boo would host the veterinary talk show in Singapore. There would be an audience of pet owners at the show. One of them would ask her pet care questions related to a theme, for example skin diseases. She would examine the pet and give her advices.
After that, the audience will clap their hands in appreciation. Dr Boo will stand on a stage and sing a love song of unrequited love. That will make the young girls in the audience weep. A group of dancers will appear and swing with her as she sings. Another singer appears and there is more dancing. The audience claps their hands on cue in loud applause!"
The young man's eyes opened and shook his head as if he was saying: "What sort of whacky concept is to propose to Boo?"
I continued: "The veterinary clinic should be named "Peek-A-Boo" as it is such a good name to remember. The classmates will work in the background as more pet owners come to patronise this clinic. No need to worry about no business or falling turnover as Dr Boo brings in the fame and fortune.
The veterinary talk show should be called 'Peek-A-Boo' as I connect the surname with this English phrase I learnt in primary school. All dancers should wear a mask to peek at each other as they turn to face each other during dancing....
The young man's two classmates laughed loudly. Except for this serious young man. "I don't want to be associated with your mad scheme!" he exclaimed.
We had so much laughter. Laughter is the best medicine. Fortunately for me, Boo was not present at this lunch as I don't know whether she would appreciate the sense of humour at the use of her name. We ended the lunch on a happy note for my guests and I hope for this serious young man.