This will be a short blog post as I am busy being a mother … prom dressing shopping with Thing 3*, hanging with Thing 2 home on Spring Break**. This is really an addendum to my visit to Baltimore. If this doesn’t interest you, come back in two weeks when I am back from the very truncated College Trip 3.0. What colleges have we not seen within driving distance? We are going south, to get out of the snow.
Anyhoo, I forgot to write about one of my favorite evenings ever with Thing 1. On the Tuesday night of my visit we went to PJ’s Pub (3333 North Charles Street, Baltimore) for Trivia Night with two of her girl friends. For two hours we drank cider and answered questions erudite and inane, pitted against a host of other 21-22 year old teams. Teams with names like: Check All That Apply, Rehab is For Quitters (ours, an inherited name), and my favorite, How Do You Solve a Problem Like Sharia? (sung to the Rodgers and Hammerstein tune). When I heard the last team name, I actually barked with laughter, much to the embarrassment of Thing 1. Besides the owner of the pub, I was by far the oldest.
Right before the bonus round, where points are gambled, we were in first place. Although I helped out mostly in the beginning, I was a hindrance towards the end and learned to shut my mouth. The best I could do when a baseball question came up was suggest Hispanic last names, which was more helpful than you’d think. (An all girls table at Nerd U Trivia Night does not bode well for sports questions.) Here is one for you: without looking, who wrote The Tale of Rip Van Winkle?*** If you lived in Spain, you should get this question. Thing 1 and I did not, even though we’d both lived in Spain and visited the Alhambra (hint, hint). The other girls at the table, though, did know. Thing 1 correctly identified Ghandi as a British lawyer who was an expat in South Africa, which made me proud of her IB diploma.
We ended the evening humbled, in third place. I was happy to know that some young people in America knew what sharia law was and dismayed to have to explain it to others. Mainly, I was grateful to share the experience with the other college students and to see my daughter socializing in a rather wholesome way.
It has been a tough news week. Having flown over the Alps several times, this week’s events have left me bereft. But, as we head into Passover and Easter, I leave you with two quotes from the Mahatma Ghandi and a bit of Scripure:
“A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.”
And, as references the image above, “It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.”
Finally, Psalm 121:1-2: “ I lift my eyes to the mountains – where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.”
The hills ARE alive with the sound of music. Let us strain our ears to hear it, even though it seems impossible to do.
*an activity fraught with tension but an area in which I hope to outdo my own mother.
**don’t waste money on Spring Break for freshmen. It is better for them to come home, detox, and sleep.
*** Washington Irving