If you want to invite me for a guest lecture or talk

I’m thinking that someday, I would like to have an info packet like Richard Stallman. For instance, consider:

If you can find a host for me that has a friendly parrot, I will be very very glad. If you can find someone who has a friendly parrot I can visit with, that will be nice too.

or perhaps….

It is nice of you to want to be kind to me, but please don’t offer help all the time. In general I am used to managing life on my own; when I need help, I am not shy about asking. So there is no need to offer to help me. Moreover, being constantly offered help is actually quite distracting and tiresome.

So please, unless I am in grave immediate danger, please don’t offer help….

…One situation where I do not need help, let alone supervision, is in crossing streets. I grew up in the middle of the world’s biggest city, full of cars, and I have crossed streets without assistance even in the chaotic traffic of Bangalore and Delhi. Please just leave me alone when I cross streets.

In some places, my hosts act as if my every wish were their command. By catering to my every whim, in effect they make me a tyrant over them, which is not a role I like. I start to worry that I might subject them to great burdens without even realizing….

…and best of all…

Please don’t be surprised if I pull out my computer at dinner and begin handling some of my email. I have difficulty hearing when there is noise; at dinner, when people are speaking to each other, I usually cannot hear their words. Rather than feel bored, or impose on everyone by asking them to speak slowly at me, I do some work.

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