After we ordered lunch, conversation turned to my au pair situation: We had one returning to her family in Mexico and a new one coming in. Nick looked at me quizzically and finally said, “What did you call her? And how do you spell that?”
I tilted my head, “Au pair?”
“Sorry,” he explained. “I just had one of those moments where you think you should know something – since you’ve been here on the earth long enough – but then you realize you’ve made it this far without knowing something obvious to many people.”
I smiled because this happened to me often. “What else don’t you know that you think you should know?”
“Well, I discovered I don’t know anything about Caesarean sections. For example: Once you’ve had one, do you always have to get one? Do they cut the same place? I guess you, or any mom, would know that.”
As a matter of fact, I didn’t. And so the idea of a Late Blooming Discovery was born… By C-section. Same cut.
We agreed to be Discovery Buddies, keeping each other appraised of new stuff we learned, because you never know what seemingly obvious thing you don’t know. We created a shared Google doc, scribbling new discoveries as they occur. This weekend, for example, I contributed:
Skates and stingrays look pretty similar but weirdly, skates lay eggs and rays have live babies. Skate eggs are those black “mermaid purses” you find at the beach, made of chitin, which is a material similar to your fingernails.
It’s been fun in a way that Palcohol will never be. I encourage you to recruit your own Discovery Buddy and try it!
Of course, the most interesting Discovery Buddies are those that have very different life experiences, beliefs, hobbies and friends from your own. As such, they offer the greatest “discovery”/learning potential.
For example, Nick is younger, male, Korean-American. He grew up in laidback Southern CA (versus my uptight New England), has a Masters in International Affairs and served in the Peace Corp in Bulgaria. (Nick isn’t his real name though. I changed it.) I feel smarter just knowing him and what he doesn’t know.
Tell us if you adopt the idea of a Discovery Buddy. Maybe we can compare all the stuff we’ve learned one day and go on Jeopardy!