I asked this question to Tim from Music of Sound, and he was very helpful.  But I wanted to open it up to discussion here as well.

In cases where permission is required to record at a location, I have a hard time getting people who have never heard of field recording to understand what I’m trying to do.
For instance I was trying to record a chanting session at a buddhist center and the only thing they would say to me was “we have CDs of chanting that you can buy if you want to hear it” ­čÖé
I’m plenty polite but people seem to be suspicious, or confused.┬á People are used to cameras, but not microphones.
Do you find yourself in these situations? Any tips on overcoming this obstacle?