Youth in Asia

I have wanted to be a veterinarian since I was 12 years old.   Which may make this story even funnier!  The summer after my freshman year in college, I decided  to attend  summer school at  Panhandle State  University  in  Goodwill,  Oklahoma!  If one could overlook the heat it  was a  good summer.  I  enrolled  in history, botany and speech.  

The speech class was taught  by large,  stern,  individual named  Dr. Underwood.  I was not much of a  public speaker back then.  It took starting a family for me to realize the power that  public speaking  holds  for  me.   (The ability  to have a captive  audience  who wants to listen to what I have to  say!)  Anyway,  I was  assigned my first speech, it was on Martin Luther King  Jr.  and I survived it.  At that  point in my life, I  still didn’t love  public  speaking.   However, I  knew I  had done a great job on it.  So, with that  speech, my public speaking confidence soared.

For the next speech,  I was assigned the  topic  of “Youth in Asia”.  Well, let me tell you, this was right up my alley.   Several  years before,  I  had  spent  a month in Japan.  I attended  a Japanese  high school.  I  knew tons about “Youth in Asia”.  I  skipped to the library, and started  digging through some reference materials.   Footnotes  and index cards were generated to  support everything I wanted to talk about.  Then, on the  day of the  speech, there I was, confidently telling Dr Underwood, and  a  college  class of my peers all about  “Youth in Asia”.  It  was a hit.  I was amazing.

I was surprised, when I  was asked to stay after class for  a minute.  This was unusual, as Dr. Underwood usually  provided  our  feedback to us  on paper.  I waited patiently for the other students to file out.  When the classroom cleared,  he gently told me, that the assigned  topic had actually been,  . . . . “Euthanasia”!   Thank  goodness I  hadn’t circulated pictures of  me  in my kimono!  

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