In the eighth grade, I wrote and recited a speech on Dating in the public speaking competition. It was more like an insightful comedy act where I covered such topics as asking someone out on a date, telling your parents about the date, and dealing with gossip. Within my school, I placed 1st and was given the opportunity to compete in Regionals. So, I did.
I wish I had had enough wherewithal to have expected the poor reception of my speech, and that my school administrators could have had enough courtesy to have warned me. Perhaps they didn't want me to backout, realizing that my ignorance of prejudices could endow me with confidence as I recited my speech in front of a very conservative panel.
But it was certainly a learning experience to have been handed my ribbon for my participation, and have a woman that I looked up to whisper a snide remark into my ear as she shook my hand for the photo. After all, I've now had the pleasure of having a lifetime of these moments, and I don't foresee an end to them any time soon.