Twice in the span of one week, I’ve had somebody ask me, “So, what’s your story?” after meeting them for the first time.
That’s exactly how each of them asked it too. “So, what’s your story?”
Both times I was flummoxed. My story? I don’t have a story. I’m in my late thirties, married with two kids. I’m perfectly average in every way. I grew up in the suburbs. I went to college. I graduated and got a job. No run ins with the police. No family tragedies. Hardly the stuff of enticing conversations.
I’m not sure what these people (both women, by the way) were trying to get from me. “What’s your story” is an incredibly broad question that implies that I, in fact, have a story to tell.
I’m sad to say that I did not respond with charm and wit either time. I stammered and repeated the question back to them, “What’s my story?” and gave a short bio of my career. Boring. I’m surprised the women kept talking to me after my lame responses.
It wasn’t until the drive home after the second time that an answer occurred to me. The next time somebody asks me what’s my story I will be ready.
“I was born a poor black child…”*
*It's not offensive, it's a reference.