Friday, November 7, 2008

What Kind of Horse are You?

When I was in college, I ended up have a conversation with a professor. Let's call this professor Dr. Lengthy*. It was a conversation I will NEVER forget. This conversation should have NEVER happened. It was wrong on so many levels. I'd like to forgive him on account of him being an engineer, but even for an engineer this was a little too socially inept. [Dr. Lengthy, when other engineers think you're weird, that's a BRF (big red flag) that you've got a serious problem.]

I was with a small group in Dr. Lengthy's office hours and we were chatting about various things mostly related to school. I think it was a Friday and someone brought up weekend plans. So here's the thing. Apparently all the guy engineers who have trouble getting dates assume that this is not true for the few girls in the engineering program. HA! Quite the opposite. The engineering guys often act like dating another engineer would be like "bringing their work home with them." Fine, be that way. There's a reason that the few girls in my engineering program always said, "The odds are good, but the goods are odd." Most of those geeks weren't all that great anyway. (Does anyone else smell sour grapes?) And if engineering girls try to venture outside of the engineering discipline? Let's be honest here folks. At least at lot of women are attracted to things like a stable job, heath benefits, and a 401(k) no matter how socially incompetent an engineer is. What do girl engineers have to offer? Showing guys up by having a bigger salary and more brains? It shouldn't matter, but let's face it - it often does.

So anyway, I scoffed at the notion of my date-filled weekend and clarified that I really didn't date very much. Dr. Lengthy took this as his cue to jump in with some real "gems" of advice. I strongly suggest you sit down for this.

Dr. Lengthy proceeded to tell me that I didn't want most of those guys out there anyway. They didn't know what was good for them. (Up to this point, his advice seemed fairly kind, albeit unsolicited.) Then he went on to dismiss most guys by saying they were looking for a "spring filly." Then, with an encouraging thrust of the fist, he told me I was a "breeding mare."

Do you need me to repeat that? A BREEDING MARE.

Well, I can totally see where he was coming from...NOT. I mean, at this point I was the ripe old age of 21. Positively ancient, I know. Maybe I looked a little older than that but STILL! Or perhaps this was a reference to my birthing hips? I'd like to think that he was referring to maturity more than actual age and physical appearance because that helps the recurring nightmare go away.

He went on to explain that when he met his wife, he liked her because she wasn't some silly little girl. In fact, unlike other girls he had dated, she could lift a heavy skillet with one hand. (Because skillet lifting. That, that is an important yet decidedly lacking skill in our society. Oh wait. What's that you say? We don't live in a log cabin on the plains??? My bad.)

Dr. Lengthy also explained that, as evidenced by the skillet incident, he liked a "full-sized woman." That's right, a FULL-SIZED WOMAN. Did he know that is usually a polite way of saying "fat," or was he really that oblivious? He didn't actually say it in so many words, but he definitely suggested that I was just such a "full-sized woman." Just what every young woman who feels like she's not getting very many dates wants to hear from a creepy old professor, right?

The conversation went on for quite some time with him continuing to re-emphasize the "spring filly," "breeding mare," and "full-sized woman" points. In the meantime I had trouble running away screaming politely ending the conversation and making a quick exit because I was too stunned.

And there folks you have the story about how one of my college professors tried to raise my morale by calling me old and fat. All this was supposed to make me feel better how???

*Names changed to protect the, ignorant? But if you happened to be an engineering student at my college, you might be able to guess who I mean.


Janssen said...

This story may be, possibly, even funnier the second time.

Pickles and Dimes said...

Laughing my butt off at the "the odds are good, but the goods are odd" line.

And EEEWWWWW to the Lengthy Professor. Spring filly? Mare? WTH?

Lauren said...

Wow, what a clueless little man! I feel sorry for his wife. So, was this story at the top of your awkward moments list? Good thing you can laugh about it now!

Anonymous said...


Bart said...

I'm with pickles and dimes. "The odds are good, but the goods are odd" is a line that deserves more use.

And in answer to the titular question, I like to think of myself as a Destrier. It just seems to really fit the bill.

Leann said...

Ok, now that I read this, I remember sitting in the Senior Project room, when you came in with the horrified face to tell us about the conversation you just had! Oh man, so many disturbing conversations had with that professor!

Melanie said...

Love your stories...hilarious. Seriously, he must live in some sort of hole. And that hole is on a farm. And that farm I'm sure has horses. What a crazy old man!

Mary Lou Hart said...

Just re-read and this story still makes me laugh. I just you remember being told it at a dinner event while Dr.Lenghty was giving a talk and you for some reason did not feel like listening.