So, yeah, this happened:
Yes, that’s me, on stage, in roller skates, at Ignite Portland 11. Last night, I delivered 20 slides’ and 5 minutes’ worth of factoids about how to get better at roller skating, in front of a few friends, and hundreds of strangers.
I submitted my talk just after the last Ignite event, wrote down a couple points in an outline, and then promptly forgot about it for the 6-or-so months following, until they e-mailed me a couple of weeks ago saying, “hey, you’ve been accepted!” So, I’ve spent the past 3 weeks berating myself for accepting the spot—it was nerve-wracking preparing for it, designing the slides on the short timeline they gave was incredibly stressful, and as of this morning, I thought for certain I’d crash and burn horribly.
But, as it turns out, I did okay! A glass of wine loosened me up the right amount, I didn’t hurt myself getting up or down from the stage on skates, and I managed to stay on-pace and even-keeled, and kept my tongue mostly-untied throughout the talk. I even got to get a little bit nerdy about center of gravity, using wheel edges, and muscles in the human body. (hat-tip to Rita Manual for her abs/psoas schpiel, which inspired a couple of my slides)
Don’t get me wrong—holy crap, public speaking is terrifying, and I’m certainly not good at it, as a general rule. But hey, I pulled it off this time, and it was (gasp!) actually a pretty fun experience.
So, hooray for pushing boundaries, even if it took a fair bit of nudging from an outside force. 😉
(P.S. there are also some helpful article and video links, and a PDF of my slides available for download, posted on my SRS BSNS regular blog.)