Last Thursday I had to give a presentation in my Business Communication class which I despise in case you were wondering, but I only have 6 hours of school left after this semester so I'll just suck it up. My presentation was over hotels using social media, specifically how Marriott uses Twitter to interact with past, present, and future guests. Sounds interesting, right? Yeah, I know...it's not that interesting, but lie, ok? It will make me feel better.
Anyway, our teacher had told us that we needed to open with something "attention grabbing." So, I thought back in my life to something that happened to me at a hotel that has stuck with me, and I thought, "Yes! I can tell that story about how I ate a raw hamburger AGAIN and my classmates can't do anything about it! They can't get up and leave the room. They have to sit there and endure it. Yes, yes, yes!"
And now, because I love this story sooooooooo much I'm going to tell it again. Ha!
It was 1993 and I was 10 years old. My grandparents were taking me to Disney World. I was pumped. I wasn't thrilled about flying so much, though. Since the first time I flew I've thought planes were destined to crash no matter what and I fear for my life each time I step foot on one. Plus, they plug up my ears so I feel like I'm in a windy tunnel for hours. Ok, so, I wasn't thrilled about flying, but I did it and when we arrived in Florida we went to our hotel where that night we ate at the hotel restaurant. I, being a 10 year old, ordered a cheeseburger. What else would a 10 year old girl order? A steak? Lobster? No way! That's fancy pantsy stuff!
I'm sitting at the table next to my grandma and all around us are the people we had travelled to Florida with. They were all older and I was the only child. Talk about awkward. And then all of a sudden the waiter brings me my delicious, oh so amazing cheeseburger! My mouth was watering with utter and complete joy. I couldn't wait to take that first bite. It was going to be the BEST cheeseburger EVER! But then...
I thought, "this cheeseburger tastes funny, and it feels funny on my tongue, and something just isn't right..."
I looked down at my delicious, oh so amazing cheeseburger and it was RAW!!!
I said, "Grandma! Grandma!" All the while she's shushing me because she doesn't want me to cause what she calls a "stink" in front of all of her friends. Finally, she pays attention to me and looks down at my raw, bloody, barely cooked cheeseburger, and what does she do? Nothing. She wouldn't let me complain or say anything. My poor little 10 year old self was devestated. No delicious, oh so amazing cheeseburger for this girl on that day.
For years after that incident I refused to eat meat if it had even a hint of pink. I was convinced it was raw no matter what. My dad would argue with me and say, "Amanda, there is a big difference between hamburger and steak. Hamburger should barely be pink when cooked, but steak is not worth eating if it's brown all the way through." I would say, "But, Da-ad, it's RAW." To which, he would say, "No, it's rare." Eventually, my taste buds whipped me into shape and made me realize that well done steak is just sick and wrong and I now eat a good steak cooked to a nice medium rare, but that raw cheeseburger has stuck with me for 18 years. And I'll probably still be telling the story another 18 years from now.
You know what else I'll still tell in 18 years? During the same trip to Disney World, the day we went to visit the Epcot Center, I saw a young boy get run over by a double decker bus. I didn't see how it happened, but I told everyone who would listen that his dad pushed him in front of it. Can you believe that?! What kind of horrible child was I that I would blame someone I didn't even know and had never even seen of pushing his child under a bus? I was a sick and twisted child who eats raw hamburger, that's how horrible I was.