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February 23, 2007

story teller

I am getting ready for a big presentation I have next week. I get to talk all about the research I've been doing and have been spending way too much time playing with power point in preparation.

Oddly enough I don't feel much stage fright. I feel confident about my knowledge of the subject and for the most part enjoy performing in front of a crowd (the Leo in me finally coming out). However, I am realizing how much I suck at story telling. As I understand it, this is a crucial aspect of an engaging presentation. I keep wanting to get ahead of myself, spill facts before the time is right, and I can't figure out which parts of the story I should tell first. I know when I do this I end up sounding like a geek spouting factoids - which is not how you engage an audience. I have a really hard time separating the tale I am trying to tell into a linear monologue. The fact is this part is related to that part which is also related to the previous parts and they seem so integral; so how do I flatten it all out and not confuse people?

Intellectually I know that a good story carefully builds as it is told. I have seen some really good story tellers, am an avid reader, and love movies and television primarily for their plot lines yet internalizing what I have watched is a whole different story (haha).

February 08, 2007

White Sugar

Growing up on the hippy commune I loved to dance and bounce around to music. I think most kids enjoy this. One song in particular stuck in my head for years and recently I read the lyrics and smiled. I call it the vegetarian kids' anthem.

White Sugar (imagine it to eighties pop music - like Madonna, Eurythmics, or Talking Heads)

Oh, I like white sugar and I'll tell you why. It gives
me a buzz, and that's no lie. One of my favorite
drugs, it makes me high.
Some people sit around and call it white death while
they themselves are eating dead animal flesh! What
does it matter that I'm eating white sugar when the
nuclear plants, they're committing mass murder! Oh I
like the taste of honey but it cost too much money,
without a little sugar all my food taste funny!
I like white sugar cuz its good and sweet. I like
white sugar cuz when its good and cheap. I love white
sugar. It's good to eat. I wish everyone could eat
white sugar instead of meat. Its only beets!
Oh, I could eat fudge yummies til I fall on the floor
and when I woke up I would come back for more. Algunos
lo llaman la merta blanca mientras los mismis comen
animalses muertos! Oh no! Gimme a buzz, gimme a white
sugar buzz!

February 03, 2007

flying high

I went skiing last night - downhill - for the first time ever in my life.

I really didn't think I would enjoy it that much but it was hard to walk away from the slopes. Despite the freezing air, my first lesson was a breeze. It was a lot of work but all worth it for the feeling of floating or flying (depending on how fast you go) down a hill. It's like sledding only with more control.

My muscles are all achy today (but not bruised - I haven't fallen yet) which is even better - because it means something really really fun actually counts as exercise!

February 02, 2007

weather report

It's 2 degrees (F, -16 C) out. The high today is 4 and that is as warm as it will get for the next several days. Over the weekend we won't see the positive side of zero. And that is before we factor in the wind chill.

I love it when the weather matches my mood.