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Editor’s Query: Tell us about a time when you were more powerful than you had thought

Before retirement, I worked in the Pentagon managing the Army’s budget for procurement. One day as I watched an official providing budget testimony to a congressional committee on C-SPAN, I realized he had just provided an incorrect number to a question from the committee.

I quickly told a colleague, which prompted atext message to the official’s aide.

On C-SPAN, I saw the aide hand the official a slip of paper. The official then corrected his mistake before the committee. It was amazing to see the result of my action happening immediately!

Judith Guenther,


When I was in North Carolina, I attended a square dance mixer. When it came time for the Virginia reel, I helped the caller recruit some wall­-flowers onto the main floor.

At one point, I grabbed a young woman and man to pair them up; I think I said something sublime like, “Here, dance with her.”

Less than a year later, I ran into the woman at a party. She told me she was engaged to marry that fellow! I freaked out.

I never want to find out if they were happy, had kids, divorced or lived happily ever after. I just do not want to know! Too much responsibility.

Julie Locascio,


New Query: Tell us about a time when turnabout was fair play.

The Washington Post is partnering with the Public Insight Network (PIN) to hear more of your 100 percent true stories taken from your own experience. Submit your answer to the query above online at­query. By sharing your story, you become part of PIN — a network of more than 130,000 people who contribute to high-quality journalism. Editors will choose an entry to run in the Magazine, but we will also share more of your stories online. You can also submit to The Washington Post Magazine, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Include your daytime phone number. Recount your story in 250 words or fewer.

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