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Monday, July 1, 2013

Foreign Service Officers Are...Weirdos?

While having lunch with a Peace Corps Volunteer and a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV), the RPCV expressed that he thought the Foreign Service had many "weirdos" working in its ranks. He said that while working with USAID in another country, he came across many FSOs that just made him think, "How did they get this job?"

I almost tried to argue with him, but I kept my composure (look at me putting the first-listed Dimension to good use), and realized that this RPCV's experiences are his own, and every organization has its cast of characters, from the weird, to the hyper, to the kind, to the maniacal.

The Foreign Service is no different. And to be honest...looking around these parts, I'd say Peace Corps is full of its weirdos, too! And, really, if the Foreign Service didn't at least some weirdos, I'd probably be too suspicious to apply, haha. Plus, I've been called "weird" more than once in my life...maybe I'll be the next weirdo trying to stay incognito at your friendly neighborhood embassy...


  1. LOL there are "weird" people in every industry! I have unfortunately already experienced some of the snobbery, though, that is known to flow through the Jr FSO ranks. When I was at my OA I was the only specialist interviewing that day alongside about 30 rowdy FSO candidates. While we were all on a break in the waiting room a really nice girl struck up a conversation with me. The rest of the group asked what I was there for and when I told them OMS they promptly stopped talking to me and totally snubbed me!

    I thought this was funny b/c 1) I likely have more education and international experience than a lot of them and 2) Everyone knows you don't disrespect your OMS! They will learn eventually that it's the support staff that really runs the place and makes things happen. In fact, my current boss actually calls ME "boss" ;)

    1. WOW. How rude of them. Seriously, why be snobby? I heard it was pretty common knowledge that OMS folks make the FS world go 'round. Sigh. I hope one day we're actually colleagues, because even though I'm a weirdo, I'm no snob! ;)

    2. At my OA I loved talking to the OMS candidates. It was a relief to interact with someone who wasn't treating me like competition. And yah, if there is one person in ANY office that you don't mess with its the person who runs things. :)

    3. @Hihankara, sounds like the polite, normal thing to do :D