Olee Banerjee


This story is perhaps my favorite to tell at family gatherings (besides the one about failing my learner’s permit test the first time) – so gear up folks, this is going to be a weird one.

‘Twas a normal Wednesday at The Potomac School, and I had just attended an assembly about raising awareness for and prevention of abusive relationships. We were told that if we want to learn more and continue the conversation, we could go to a room (whose number I forgot) to discuss. And, an added bonus – there would be pizza and salad. So, like any freshman hungry for both pizza and knowledge does, I followed a few people and seemed to have found the right room. I was surprised by the number of people showing up and the relatively equal gender ratio, but I didn’t question anything because I saw the pizza and salad and deduced with expert reasoning that this must be the conversation I signed up for.

Then the leader says, “Let’s do some introductions, and then we’ll start handing out Bibles.” And then I laughed. And everyone gave me a look. I thought it was a joke, comparing a book of law (or something of the sort) to the Bible since the law can be used to save someone and secure justice if used well. You can imagine my surprise when they actually started handing out Bibles. I thought, “Oh! We’re using multiple sources to comment on societal stigma!” And then we started talking about Jesus and a miracle he performed. At that point, I was… confused, to say the least.

So, like the incredibly slow-witted person I am, I asked the girl next to me, “Isn’t this a conversation about abusive relationships…?” The girl next to me kindly pointed out that we were in room U327, and the conversation I was supposed to be attending was in U227. And since that wasn’t enough for me to put the pieces together, I asked, “So where am I?” And bless her for not laughing at me and calling me a fool on the spot, but she told me I was in a Bible Study discussion. She told me I should leave and go to the other one since we were running out of time, but I felt so bad about just eating the pizza and leaving. So I stayed. And I pretended to be following along in the Bible, though I had no clue what page anyone was on – I couldn’t figure out (and still can’t) what the names and colons and numbers meant. It was an interesting experience, for sure, just not the one I was mentally prepared for.