My ass is dragging, so I'll hit a few high points, and then I plan to be in bed before 1:00 am. Prepare for flying pigs.
One of the women from my writer's bootcamp presented her inspirational talk today. And the talk she gave is one she started at a bootcamp here at my house. It was sensational. I was so proud of and for her. I believe I'll be able to post a video of it eventually. But for now I'll just say that it was a powerful experience having heard the first rough draft of ideas one afternoon in my living room, and then watching her flawlessly deliver the finished talk while her husband played muted trombone under her words. It was my favorite talk of the day.
Another woman, a young Air Force medic, made me cry, both at rehearsal yesterday and during her presentation this afternoon. She described studying in a coffee shop one day when a man with a shotgun came in to celebrate Hitler's birthday by killing black patrons in the shop. It was harrowing to listen to her recount lying there after she'd been badly wounded, pretending to be dead. Her courage and determination touched all of us so deeply .... I will try to post that one too.
During lunch the committee I was on, the audience experience committee, took cards around to all 60 lunch tables and asked the attendees to collaborate and write one word on the card. We gave no further directions, and we collected the cards as they were finished. Some of the words from my section were "sparkle," "aha," "vague" (because my directions were vague), "revolutionary," and "yum." A locally famous poet and professor took the cards and told a story poem using all the words in the order they were given to him for his talk. The audience was surprised and impressed, and when I applauded it was as much for his courage as for the performance.
We had 20 speakers, but I only saw 7 or 8 of them, because I was working the rest of the time. We had lots of "day of" volunteers to help out, but those of us who've been working on committees for the past several months needed to stay on top of the day.
Sometimes I prefer to do the work as opposed to just attending, and this was one of those times. I would have had a wonderful time if I'd paid my $50 and sat my butt in a chair -- the energy in the audience was electric -- but I got to work with some cool new friends on our committee and experience the day from behind the scenes. I'm glad I did that in spite of -- or maybe because of -- the months of work.
The day did hold one disappointment though. Several of us on our committee had been planning all these months to present stories we collected from the audience during our registration process, and as of yesterday we were on the schedule to do that right before lunch. Over the past few months we wrote the application essays, so we could get the best stories, then spent hours condensing and vetting the information. Four of us were supposed to read some of those stories from the stage today.
But after we spent almost 15 minutes trying to track down the person who was supposed to help us rehearse on stage at 8:15 am, we were told that the afternoon before, while we were there setting up the lobby for registration, she had chosen other people to do it. We were bitterly disappointed. I think it's safe to say we still are. It tinged the color of the day for us. Perhaps just because we were so excited about all of it though. Like kids on Christmas morning.
So TEDx is over, and I feel a little of that post-show letdown. It won't last though, because life speeds on .....
For example, Murphy visited me yesterday afternoon and laid down the law when I got in my van to drive to set-up and rehearsal. Something is broken -- the accelerator thingy, my mechanic suspects -- and my van is revving when it should be idling. It's a little nerve-wracking to drive it, because it's idling higher than normal when I take my foot off the brake. In other words, it goes before I put my foot on the accelerator ... kind of like that car in Knight Rider.
So I called my mechanic, who said he's swamped, but if I'll bring it in around 8:00 am, he'll try to fit it in and at least run the computer on it. If he can't fit it in, I'll have to pick it up at 3:00 and take it back Monday. I don't know if driving it is doing more damage, but it doesn't seem to be getting worse. Anyway this gives me an excuse to get in an early morning bike ride. The shop is only about 3 miles away, so I can drop off my van, ride back home, and
Finally, it's day 15. I'm halfway through November's NaBloPoMo (National Blog Post Month.) Fingers crossed I can stay the course.