Supplies: Evade the Radar

Radar Scanner Near Chesapeake Beach, August 1973
from the US National Archives Flickr Commons stream

Evade the Radar is simply keeping your mouth shut until whatever it is is done. I believe in that. When you grow up surrounded by monsters, you learn to keep secret the good things most of all.

I even have a small parable from my own life:

Back in college I got roped into a game of football with a mixed group of men and women. Everyone thought I was completely non-athletic and at that time, to some degree, they were right though not to the degree that I led them to assume. It was then assumed I was completely incompetent when it came to all sports.

My team figured out that the guys we were playing were so wrapped up into this perception of me that they were literally playing around me. One guy especially wouldn’t lay a hand on me. So I volunteered to run interference.

During the play, he said “Get out of my way!”

I grinned and kept my pace in front of him. He assumed I was being an idiot. Only after the play was finished and my team scored did it dawn on him. He stared at me, wide-eyed. “You were running interference!”

“Yup!” I gave him a shit-eating grin and walked away. All he had to do was tackle me – but I got through completely unscathed because he couldn’t adjust his perceptions enough to accept me as a full player.

In some ways it was dual karmic payback. When I met him I assumed he was stupid/lazy academically and acted like he was. That wasn’t true. His assumption about my ability to play sports at all fell along the same lines.

I never mentioned it again. Neither did he. But he also didn’t underestimate me ever again, either.

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