Largely Unaware

This lunchtime as we were driving back home from the beach, I was contemplating on the notion that people can be largely unaware of who / what they are dealing with.

There are a number of laser companies here and I did make some overtures to them over two years ago now. One of the things that they are looking into is using molecular spectroscopy to aid in agriculture. I said to them back then that I knew a lot about spectroscopy and if they wanted, they could ask my advice and I would give it freely. Nobody did ask, physicists although they may be smart, do not tend at first pass to think in terms of molecules. I said that sometimes it is useful to have a chemist as an intermediary between physics and biology.

I am sat here 20 minutes away and nobody up there has made use of me nor are they aware of what potential I might have. I have offered to turn their Franglais into English. I am sure that I could polish their web sites for them. I have suggested that as they are fibre dudes, they should hook up with the University of Southampton, just across the channel and that I would be happy to start this off.

I wonder if they think it rude to intrude or ask.

This thought train was stimulated by the events surrounding my recent hospital procedure. As I was being wheeled into theatre one of the lady medics asked me about implants. I explained to her that I have inguinal polypropylene on both sides and titanium alloy in my left hip.  She was mildly taken aback at my explanation and the detail. We moved into what was a really good clean room operating theatre. It was high spec and pretty new. It was top of the range in a small regional clinic.

The anaesthetist prepped my catheter and when she went to inject me, I said “night, night”.

Later in recovery she was talking with me, and the conversation was around my view that if you live in a country, you should at least try to learn the language. The usual question around here is have we experienced any problems because of Brexit. I said no not really. French administration is difficult to get started but then it is a bit of a juggernaut. I said that France had be kind enough to give us our Titre de Sejour. The topic turned to my level of French, and I explained we have been here a little over two and half years, most of that pandemic. She was curious as to how come my language was “so good”.  She asked what I used to do. I said that I had taught chemistry at a university in London. She asked which one. I said Imperial College. She did not recognise it. I said that it was a bit like Oxford University in terms of level. Her face was a picture. That was an answer she was not expecting. She was now happy, the reason that my French was OK was because I had been a teacher or prof. as they call them here.

People in the operating theatre have little knowledge of who or what they have on their table. They don’t need to, it is not neccessary.

As a rule of thumb there may me an assumption that the Brits {over here} are perhaps not all that smart, partly because they cannot be arsed to learn the language.

People are largely unaware and can make assumptions…