So when your boss-guy busts out with a completely tangential remark about the visiting colleague from a field office, do you just go with the flow? Or do you stop and do what I like to call the "Mikey-big-eyes" and and WTF it? I like to think I'm part of the former group.
See, I feel like I'm at far too much of an advantage, maybe doubly so, having be raised by people from another country with similar inquiry needs and taking such comments and questions and observations at face value and moving on (and of course hoping they kept their musings to themselves when in public, please god, I will be so good...).
Then there was my stint as a 7th grade teacher...which really and truly, if you want to find out how curious kids are and just how bizarre their brains can be and what connections they come up with? Just ask a 7th grade teacher what her kids asked her during the day.
Anyhow, as I was explaining the confection this visitor had given our department to share he busted out with, "They're the ones who don't eat beef, right?"
"Right, so rest assured there will be no beef product in this dessert....but there is cardamom."
The look on his face was priceless, but even I'm not that mean and explained it was a seed/spice, not an animal. Like the good teacher that still haunts me, I was hoping to reign in the conversation and take it back to the original topic else we ended up talking cows and religion and all manner of topics best left out of a workplace.
It is comforting to know I haven't lost that hard-won ability, at least.