Friday, February 15, 2013

To Be... Or Not To Be?

I'm debating doing something and could use your input. 

No, not put my kids up for adoption.

A childhood friend who also writes, Rhiana at Married With Toddlers, emailed me a link a while back, encouraging me to submit a piece to the San Francisco Listen To Your Mother Show.  It's basically a show where people stand up in front a billion people and cameras and talk about something meaningful, funny, or whatever regarding motherhood. She did it last year and loved it, and I have to admit that I'm intensely flattered that she thinks that I have the balls, gumption, ability, and entertainment value to do it, too.

This is the friend that one night on the way to the movies in elementary school told me that I should be a comedian, and I got all pissed off at her because I didn't know what a comedian was and thought she was insulting me. I'm pretty brilliant. Do you remember that, Rhiana? Probably not.

ANYWAY. Assuming that they'd even let me on the show (if they're smart, they won't) here's a pros and cons list. Let's start with the cons since there are more of those.

CONS, OR WHY I SHOULD NOT DO IT:
*Feel free to add to the list.

1. I am not a public speaker. This isn't to say that I'm shy because that's the last thing I am, but I have literally never spoken in public before. I have no idea what I will actually do once I step up to the mic. I could throw up, I could piss myself, I could nervous-fart, I could start screaming profanities out of sheer panic, I could start crying. Or, my throat could close up like it did once when I had to explain, in a courtroom full of people, why I shouldn't be allowed to serve on a jury and I sounded like I was strangling. I'm not kidding. Even the bailiff stared at me uneasily, like he was unsure if I was about to stroke out or something.

2. I am a complete spaz. ESPECIALLY IF I'M NERVOUS. Like, a hyper-as-fuck, bouncing off the walls, Jim-Carrey-like rubber-faced GOOBER who talks with my hands like I'm having a seizure or trying to sign to the deaf. In other words, I don't "present" well. People who are being nice would say that I'm "animated." Very "animated." I'm just not sure that I should subject people to me.

3. I don't like my face and will cringe at knowing that I am being videotaped and it is being put all over the web. Wait - MAYBE I CAN WEAR A MASK. No? 

4. Swearing is probably not allowed, and I'm sure that I'll be so nervous that I'll accidentally swear. It's like a tic.

5. I have no idea what I would even speak about. Feel free to offer up suggestions there. I'd have about five minutes. I speak at the speed of lightening and am constantly told to "slow down," so I could probably fit about 8 minutes of regular-speed speech into 5. And then no one would understand me, and most likely think that I'm on speed or drunk.

6. Speaking of being drunk, it'd be hard to NOT take a shot or seven or chug a magnum of champagne straight from the bottle before I went on the show. Then I'd make even more of an ass of myself. Rock ... hard place.

7. As I'm SURE you've picked up from reading my blog, I'm not a very "appropriate" or "politically correct" person, and am *unintentionally* downright offensive most times. I make terribly uncouth jokes, possess almost no class, and laugh at terrible things because it's how I deal with bad shit. I'm best kept behind closed doors, out of public view and consumption. Doing this show would be the exact opposite of that.

Wow. I really know how to present myself in a flattering light. Let's get to the pros. It's a short list. As with the other list, please feel free to add anything that I'm not thinking of.

PROS, OR WHY I SHOULD DO IT:

1. Um... hmmm... can't really think of any. Ooooh, I KNOW: Because I'll be in front of the camera and the clip will be posted all over the web, it'll force me into losing weight. 

2. The audition and the show itself will give me some nights away from the boys! *Jazz hands*

3. It'll be "good" for me? I can't explain why, but just have a feeling that that's something people might say.

I only have until Feb. 24th to write and submit a piece. I'm genuinely looking for input/advice/feedback, and am grateful to anyone who offers some up. I honestly have no idea if I want to be talked INTO or OUT OF doing it. I'm nervous even posting this. So, yay or nay? YAY OR NAY, PEOPLE?

And don't be a dick and encourage me to do it so you can watch me for sick entertainment value, like some freak on those reality shows, and point your finger at your screen and laugh at me. (She's like a train wreck! I CAN'T LOOK AWAY! AHAHAHAHA!) Oh, who am I kidding. It's what you already do anyway. :-D


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32 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. (and I swear I'm not saying that for any sort of sick reasons)

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    2. Oh sure... ha. Thanks for the encouragement! We shall see.

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  2. Of course you should audition! I tried to bring LTYM to Santa Cruz but that didn't work out...maybe next year.

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    1. Oh that would have been awesome! Well thanks for encouraging me to audition... would you come watch the show if I made it? Are YOU going to audition? (HI, don't mind me putting you on the spot over here...)

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    2. I've thought about it enough to want to bring the show here. Mostly because I don't want to drive to the city for auditions and then rehearsals and then the show...ugh.

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    3. Yeah, no kidding... I'm counting that in the "con" category. In my mind, since I forgot to post that part! ;-) Well if you did it, we could at least carpool for auditions!

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  3. If there's no swearing allowed, you're fucked.

    I'm going to need a link to Rhiana's stint doing it before I decide whether to encourage or gently dissuade...

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    1. Here's the blog post of her experience but no video clip. Let me find out if she has one.
      http://marriedwithtoddlers.blogspot.com/2012/05/power-of-voice.html

      And yes, I agree, I'm fucked if swearing isn't allowed.

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  4. Look...the fact of the matter is, is it will probably make you have poop cramps until the second you start blabbering. And yes, you will probably talk too fast and get flush faced and possibly swear, but you know what? Most of the people in the audience will be able to connect with you as a real human being and not a trained robot and that will make them like you all the more for being real and honest and awesome. And then....when you are 80 you will look back at your "thick thighs" or whatever other nonsense you thought was important now and say to yourself, "DAMN! I looked HOT!"
    So do it girlfriend...and make sure to chug a glass of champagne and hit the bathroom beforehand. Life is too short not leap without looking sometimes!

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  5. DO IT!!! I didn't hear about this thing until a few days ago. I immediately went to the Indy site, but the deadline for theirs has passed. It looks like so much fun. Really. Do it, if for no other reason than I can live vicariously through you.

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    1. Oh bummer!! I let the original deadline for the S.F. one pass, and found out yesterday that they extended it... soooo...

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  6. I would say try it. You may regret not doing it ( or maybe not) but I think you can do it. I enjoy reading what you have to say and I would enjoy listening to what you have to say. As far as what you should talk about, talk about what you enjoy talking about, family, friends life etc? You are very entertaining and I mean that as a compliment, and I really believe this is something you can do. You'll be nervous, who isn't , but you'll get through. Goodluck!

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  7. Well, I'm new to your blog and after reading the con's I am all for you doing it, because you had me laughing.... oh and the inappropriate laughing stuff when nervous, yeah, I have that too. I found out the hard way that I have it... had to fire someone, first time I ever fired someone and I had to bite my tongue from laughing, because I was so nervous about doing so (many moons ago). But I still have the nervous laugh going....

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Aleta! Your firing story totally made me laugh... see?

      Thanks for reading and for your input, happy to have you here!

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  8. You should definitely do. In fact if you don't do this year, I'll remind you next year because I think I would love to do it, next year.

    Public speaking is not that hard, just remember that everyone is thinking you're a pro, they don't know your scared, and they would be just as nervous as you are.

    It could get you more readers, it will give you plenty of material to write about and I bet it's highly empowering. Sounds like an amazing opportunity and you would be great!

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    1. Thanks, Running Mama! I'm still deciding. I've written most of the piece I'd submit, I just STILL DON'T KNOW if want to do it! GAH!

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  9. Do it Do it Do it!!! We can nervous-fart together! Sure, I'll be in Chicago, but that's that? Like 3 hours from California?

    Good luck!

    Master of Geography and Nervous Farting

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    1. Oh you're doing it!! Well yay! I'll be sure to watch Master of Geography and Nervous Farting's I mean, your clip on the site afterward! And listen for the nervous-fart... buah! I'm still deciding. But GOOD LUCK! Or is the appropriate term, "break a leg?"

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  10. Speaking as someone who has had a couple of speaking engagements recently after a long absence from such things; including one which filled me with more dread than almost anything I've ever done, including having a kid, I would have to say "do it".

    Speaking in public is nerve-wracking, sure. In fact, it's frequently voted as the most terrifying thing you can do. Even more than dying! Which means that, at a funeral most people would rather be in the coffin than giving the eulogy.

    But, to be honest it's not that bad. Once you get up there, and (most importantly) you're speaking about a subject you're passionate or knowledgeable about it doesn't matter who you're speaking to and it doesn't matter how good you think you are. People come away remembering what was said; not how it was said. The worst that can happen is that by the next day, you've been totally forgotten. So who cares, what do you really have to lose?

    And you're right, it will be "good for you". It's a cliche, I know but doing things that scare you is important as the potential rewards are huge. Never has that been truer than for public speaking. Maybe it could be the start of a new venture for you and this blog, who knows?

    As for what you'd speak on. Isn't the show called "Listen to your Mother"? I'm sure you have plenty of examples of times when your boys failed to do that and suffered some sort of funny/disgusting consequence. How about: "The times I almost vomited since I became a mother". That should fill 5 minutes. :)

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    1. P.S. Sorry about the ramble and BTW, there's nothing wrong with your face.

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    2. Oh, you didn't ramble, I totally appreciate your input and insights, especially coming from a voice of experience. I wrote a piece, I think I'll just submit it and see what happens! After all this, they'll probably turn me down, anyway! :-)

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  11. Because there really is no reason NOT to do it. You can come up with as many 'reasons' as you like, but they're all incorrect thinking. Stop, if you will, for a moment, stop thinking about YOU. Think about the audience. Think about how much fodder-for-laughter you have to offer people, people who WANT it! NO ONE would be present who wants to see anything other than people such as yourself sharing your genius. In fact, you have no right to withhold it. (somebody smarter than me said that). Practice first, use note cards if you must, remember to breathe, make 'eye' contact, and smile. Also, make space for the laughter while you plan your 5 minutes!

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    1. Holy crap, you are inspirational, Ashley! Okay fine, I'll finish writing my submission piece tonight. :-)

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  12. Do it because, if you pass up a kick-ass opportunity like this because you're scared/nervous/whatever then what does that teach your boys? If you had a valid reason for declining such a great moment, then fine. Like... if you just had your larynx removed and haven't yet become accoustomed to your new voice box, or perhaps, you if you were a fire breathing dragon who might accidentally torch the audience... then it would be okay to decline. I agree with Ashley, it would be criminal not to do it!

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    1. Ah, the ol' guilt-trip method... I like it! Fine, fine, I'll submit. Thank you :-)

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  13. i just read all the replies and was all set to vote: do it. but it looks as though you are. brava! i would never do it, that's why i wished you would.

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    1. Well thank you, we shall see what happens. They still have to accept me!

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  14. Glad you are doing it - you can't keep all that funny to yourself - us other mothers rely on mother's like you to make us laugh and feel better about being mother's......does that make sense??

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    1. Yes it makes sense and was very sweet of you to say, thank you!

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