Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Fear

I've discovered the cure for public speaking.

Yesterday I had to give a presentation in front of all the bigwigs in my field, topic: Health Care Reform. I'll bet you wish you were there. The date has been a looming presence for what seems like my entire life.

The night before, LK and I discovered a leak in our building. Water streaming out of the slab outside our kitchen window, source unknown. After spending hours listening through the walls with a stethoscope (I kid you not) and cutting countless patches in the dry wall we have yet to find the leak. It is likely to be underneath the concrete foundation. I went to sleep that night counting gallons of water as they gurgled out of my house. $1, $2, $3, you get the picture.

We also heard yesterday morning that a tenant of ours who had locked himself out and attempting to climb in to his second story room, slipped, fell, broke his pelvis - this much we were aware of - now wants to know the 'name of our liability insurer'.

As I stood in front of all those people, chattering away and gesticulating to make an Italian football player proud, I felt very little fear. About speaking. It reminds me of the time in College I had three projects due at the same time and I powered through all of them in the space of a couple of days. At the time I felt unbeatable, all-powerful, I could take on the world. Then I handed the reports in, and came down with a two week long cold.

One of my favourite quotes of all time has to be from Eleanor Roosevelt:

"A woman is like a tea bag- you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water."

I feel like a weak Darjeeling.

As I say, I've found the cure for public speaking, it's to have much worse things to worry about. It's not something I would wholeheartedly recommend, but it certainly works.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know your work, and I'd say you're more of a strong, Yorkshire tea especially suited to hard hot water. Go get 'em lass! S & G xx

Nimble said...

Gawdamighty. I hope the pressure lets up soon. I know the feeling you expressed in the last post of having to fake that you have the energy for the normal "extra activities" of life. While all the time juggling thoughts of various sorts of imminent collapse. Many good wishes for good resolutions.