Things I learned while on vacation Part 2

Wherein our Heroine is reminded why it is best not to be the smartest person at the table

The first long cruise I went on was two weeks long and half of those days were entirely on the cruise ship, what they call “at sea” days. I found out that I don’t like being trapped in what is basically a floating hotel/casino for days at a time. That might be fun for some people but I don’t gamble, I don’t enjoy overpriced and watered down alcohol and I have a hard time sleeping by the pool.

So, I ended up spending a lot of time, along with my husband, daughter and sister-in-law, playing trivia and other games in the “Explorer’s Lounge.” I am above average at trivia, and my husband and I kick ass at games like taboo and pictionary because we can practically read each other’s minds, but my sister-in-law is a real trivia buff. It was because of her that we won many games.

Yet even my SIL has her gaps in knowledge, and none of us are particularly good at sports, especially foreign sports (you get a lot of questions about cricket and futbol on these international cruises.)

This cruise we only had one day at sea but we managed to catch about dozen trivia/game activities and we won like five of them.  We got some okay swag (bags, key chains, pens, hats, etc) and a bottle of champagne (for tying for first place on the Beatles trivia night.)

At one of our first games we had a British gentleman, that we met during afternoon tea, join us. He knew the cricket questions, as well as some others that left us totally floundering. We ended up winning with his help.

Over the two weeks we developed a friendly rivalry with a couple other teams that were also regular winners. They each had the maximum six people on a team, Usually we just had 3 adults and my 10 year old daughter. One time we had a couple join our team, and they told us up front they were rubbish and they weren’t lying. We had a good time but it reminded me that is usually a much nicer experience to be supported in your endeavors by people who are as smart and knowledgeable as you are. And it can be even more helpful when they are smarter and more knowledgeable.

I am not just talking about trivia games where all you win is a Princess Cruises key chain. I am talking about friends, co-workers, business partners, book club members, classmates, etc. And there are times, events, and projects in your life that require you to put together a team of knowledgeable people to help you succeed.  You really want those people to know more than you do, or at least have something that they are better at than you are. Being the most knowledgeable person in the room is really only good for ego and spelling bees.

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About Annamelle

I split my time between homeschooling and writing a novel. I'm interested in and inspired by fairy tales, Jung, Buddhism, myths, architecture, nature, etiquette, hidden histories, dreams, Emerson, old books, Gaiman, and legends. "Make the most of yourself....for that is all there is of you." — Emerson

Posted on July 28, 2011, in advice, smart women. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. “And there are times, events, and projects in your life that require you to put together a team of knowledgeable people to help you succeed. You really want those people to know more than you do, or at least have something that they are better at than you are.”

    So true!

    I think this is why I am thinking about mentors too. The hard part is that when you are the smartest person in the room–maybe not literally, but if you’ve gotten to a point where you are *consistently* the go-to person, the Answer Lady, the expert–you need to find a new room. And then you need the balls to go in there and be the dumbest person in the room for a while. *And* you need to convince the other people in the room to help you out. Tough stuff!

    I’m glad to have great friends with different areas of “expertise” — even just the skill of great listening — so we can give and take pretty equally. With my work, I feel I am trying to find that “new room,” and the feeling of being the slowest and most behind keeps challenging me to suck it up and get over it.

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