Even though they’re useful for everyone, I dislike going to conferences in general. That’s weird, though — I have always liked the people I’ve traveled with, I’ve had great food, I’ve seen several major cities because of it — but the stress of travel usually ruins basically the whole “fun” aspect to it. By the time it becomes clear that everything is going to end up going okay, I’m already too tired from having been so anxious that I just nurse a stress headache until I’m back in my apartment.
The most recent conference I went to was mercifully close, in Baltimore. I drove down with the poster and, after making some corrections to the poster the night before, decided to try something a little different to prepare to speak to anyone who had questions.
I read the manuscript that went with my data out loud a couple of times and recorded myself. The next day I got to the convention center before anything was scheduled and listened to myself while walking through the empty rows of posters, pretending to read when I was really just listening to my own voice.
Do you, audience of movies and music videos and movie trailers, ever listen to your headphones as a soundtrack to your “personal movie”?
Music over action is a well-worn art. Less ubiquitous (but also very common) is a character’s narration over action.
I assume that very few people accidentally put narration over their own actual lives. But like I said, I was walking among what I internally refer to as the flea market of knowledge, listening to myself speak in that ultra-succinct science language that, if you aren’t paying close attention, sounds like gobbledygook, and it became a sort of uncanny experience. As if the jargon-y narration was underlining my profession, or something about my character, or it belied some outward trait of mine (intuitiveness? emotional irrationality?).
And if it were that last thing, did I actually have those qualities? I became confused. It was like the tropes themselves were influencing how I saw myself. It was like watching or experiencing a weird, badly-done movie with no real point. But I guess that’s pretty much what most real lives are, right?1 week ago • 0 notes