Sunday, November 21, 2010

Lazy Sunday Service

Thank god for Joe Lansdale. His Vanilla Ride made sure I got through one the blackest weeks in Irish history with a smile on my face for at least some of the time. My only problem with the book was that I had to stop reading every now and again to let the cramp drop out of my grin muscles. Top quality stuff. Unfortunately, the week didn't end quite as I hoped. Four of my colleagues and friends retired from work. I was tasked with giving a small speech about one of them; someone who I've worked with closely for a number of years and is a very good friend. It started to go downhill the minute I was handed the microphone. It was if my head was plunged into a fishtank and I dropped into an odd parallel reality in which the room was slightly out of focus and muffled. I'd actually spent a bit of time composing a speech in which I said why he was a really great guy, what he'd achieved in his career, and why he'd be missed. My script wouldn't come into focus. Heaven knows what I did actually say. The first thing I did afterwards was apologise. Forty years service to have his leaving speech cocked up. I can quite happily stand in front of a 1,000 people and give an academic talk, but ask me to do a personal one and it all goes skew-whiff. Disaster results.

My posts this week
What's 'smart' about emigration
Key Thinkers on Space and Place
Global reading challenge update
Spiv and spin economics
Review of Faithless by Joyce Carol Oates
Household travel survey
Fifty words to kill your victim
Unfinished estates are not a problem after all?
Estates? What estates? There are no estates here ...
Review of I, The Jury by Mickey Spillane


Bernadette said...

I can empathise with your personal speech-making faux-pas Rob. Similar to you I have been public speaking for many years - as part of the state debating team, as part of my job doing community consultation, as the president of my professional association etc - but when it came to the speech at my best friend's wedding I made something of a mess - we laugh about it now but at the time I was mortified.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I am so sorry for what you are going through there. Such hard times make for hard speeches.