If you have a pulse, and have been around for a few years, then you have probably found yourself in a foreign environment a time or two. Sometimes we volunteer for these experiences – like signing up for a belly dancing class at the local aquatics center…in winter. Other times, we are forced into these situations – like being asked to attend a meeting in proper business attire on the top floor of the Emerald Tower….and be the key presenter. In the SFF world, most of these unique experiences are stumbled upon and pleasantly enjoyed.
I’ve been reading SFF since I could pick up a book, and through all those thousands of pages, I have flown on dragons, run from robots, colonized planets, been lost in an underwater garden. I believe that what we spend our time doing affects the flexibility of our minds, and I believe that reading fiction, the stranger the better, the greater chance we have of adapting to odd circumstances we find ourselves in in day to day life.
I think all of us SFF nuts do this to some extent. Think about that highly analytical coworker (or perhaps that’s you?) that misses social norms and tends to stick to the facts and jokes make whooshing noises as they fly by over head. Yep, sometimes that’s me, and sometimes I compare that person to the highly analytical Spock and modify my human interaction parameters accordingly.
This past week, my foreign environment was the back of an ambulance. No drama occurred, so don’t worry. My man and I recently joined the local volunteer fire and response department, and we got our first run through on the ambulance lights, sirens, location of supplies, and how to work the gurney. This was my first time in an ambulance. Quite frankly. I expected some mild anxiety, because almost nothing good happens that requires an ambulance. Instead, it all made sense and felt quite natural.
So what odd places, scenically, publicly, grammatically , have you found yourself in? And what was your reaction?