Ask Your Question

Last week, I attended a video conference with a Valencian musician called Xavi Sarrià. He recently recorded the soundtrack for a film about the murder of a pro-Catalan Independence and anti-fascist boy in the 1990s. His family and friends have been fighting for nearly 30 years to have his story told and it was fascinating to hear a first-hand account of what happened at the time in Valencia (the musician’s friends were with the young man Guillem Agulló when he was murdered).

There were over 50 people in the virtual conference room and it was organised by the Institut Ramon Llull for students like myself who are learning Catalan. The musician spoke his native tongue and after his presentation, there was the opportunity to ask questions.

As always, whenever the floor seems to open up to students, no-one wanted to ask a question. Or so it seemed. Rather, no-one wanted to go first.

I was anxious before the call. I had prepared a few questions. I was worried that my Catalan wasn’t good enough. I didn’t want to turn my camera on. All these fears can stop us from acting.

But I thought I might as well go first. What was the worst that could happen?

As it turned out my question was understood fine and despite an initial voice break, it provoked a fascinating response from the musician.

After this, questions started flowing and the conversation became much easier. 

It’s strange, as so often we can let our fears stop us from acting and acting questions. But I desperately wanted to hear the musician’s thoughts.

We have a choice. Ask our questions first or run the risk of them going unanswered.

When was a time you asked someone a great question and got an even better response?

When was a time that you were too scared to ask a question?