For The Man Who Says He’s Not Intimidated (Part 1)

We met while I was a graduate school student in Boston. He was an employee in the library I frequented. He’d restock bookshelves and monitor the computer lab while I studied for exams and completed school projects. Coincidentally, our schedule were similar so we would see each other in the library  often.

During my study breaks, I’d strike up a conversation with him. He was a Boston native, who was pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. When he wasn’t working in the library, he was exercising, preparing for gigs, or taking care of his three younger brothers and sisters. He was an attractive guy: the type of guy that made you do a double take when you saw him walking down the street. In nicely tailored suits and trousers, one would think he’d just step out of a GQ Magazine. A career in acting was very promising for him, for he was also talented. I was impressed by him and wanted to get to know him better.

What was a bit of a turn-off for me, however, was his constant reminder of how smart I was. “You have like 5 degrees,” he’d often tell me, “You’re like super-smart. Not like me. I am still working on my GED.” The fact that he was not a public health student was one of the reasons I was initially attracted to him. My days in graduate school were already filled with discussions on correlations, epidemiological studies, and cultural competency, so a short break from these discussions were welcomed and appreciated, and that’s what he provided.Read More »