I was teaching night school the other evening- a lesson on reading comprehension when we came across a sentence they didn't understand, something along the lines of, "The magic trick was astonishing." There isn't a great Tongan translation of the word "astonish," so I showed them a simple slieght-of-hand magic trick and told them they would be astonished. Unfortunately it kind of backfired on me.
At the beginning of the trick I tolf them I would memorize the order of all the cards in the deck, then when they told me to stop at a certain point as I shuffled through the deck I would be able to tell the the exact card I stopped at without looking because I had "memorized" the entire deck (in about 15 seconds)- astonishing, right?
I performed the trick. They didn't seem very impressed. I showed them again. Certainly not astonished.
I thought about how they could possibly not be impressed with this trick. I thought and thought about it, then...was it possible? Could it be? I asked them if they thought I really memorized the entire deck (in order, in 15 seconds).
"Yes," they replied matter-of-factly, of course I did. And it didn't even surprise them that I could do that. I wasn't sure quite where to go from there.