I KICKED ASS!!!
I KICKED ASS BIG TIME!!!
The culmination of an entire semester worth of “work” finally came to head and was revealed to the very class that got me started on the road of making a change, making a difference. If you are reading this and you and I have recently become friends it is because of my speech class. I’m very glad they by their apathy got me to start moving around in classes, to start talking to other people instead of keeping to myself, got me to open up the box of observant Scorpio and most of all to start making friends. It is to them the mostly apathetic crowd that I say THANK YOU!
Tonight was my persuasive speech. I was, notice the was, going to give a speech about how I had been making these subtle and not so subtle changes in classrooms. It was going to be me being me, but more sedate and professional sounding. Then they pissed me off. I had to take Donovan to the bathroom and when we got back the room looked like one of those Charlie Brown classroom scenes where they are all talking, texting and behaving not like students, but kids who need to be back in high school. It pissed me off.
I hit “Dad-voice” right off the bat. I gave a seven minute long speech about how they could change the way they behave, what they could do to make a difference in their lives, I even explained the 80-20 rule of life then that was followed up by a five or six minute Q&A. Oh, you say that doesn’t sound so interesting…well let me give you some highlights.
I was in full on control of the room. If you have ever seen me run a gaming session then you know that I can COMMAND a room. I don’t stand in one place speaking in a mono-tone. I move, I stalk, I stomp, I wave, I gesture, I point at people and I look them in the eyes. I am loud, I am forceful and most of all I demand that your attention is on ME! I can be speaking to one person, see what another is doing and comment on a third without breaking stride. I see everything and I don’t miss anything. So when the girl in the front of the room pulled out her phone it went like this, “If that text is as important as I think it is then by all means continue. Now how many of you have heard of the 80-20 rule? Good, now for those that haven’t it goes like this…” This is while making eye contact with people at the back of the room.
I let them know that it was because of them that I had even started on this path. They should be proud. I let them know what I do at the back of the room. Someone actually asked, “You never changed seats here, you never did any of that here.” “Yep, you guys were my test group.” The only thing I do in the back of the room is watch you guys and what you do. When another student attempted to challenge my observations, “How do you know where I am looking at?” I said, “because the only thing I do in back is watch you guys. Because it is human nature that when you look a direction your head follows along. You may think you are being clever, but to those people that pay attention what you are doing is obvious.”
When it got to the point where I was telling the class about their habits, Josh in the back blurted out, “This part is funny. I’ve seen him do this before.” The other student that I respect in the class was smiling and laughing along. I started with one side of the room and pointed out who talked to whom, who didn’t, what they did seating wise, what they did every FUCKING second of the class. Then I moved to the other side of the room.
If you have never been in one of my role-playing sessions that last for hours then you have no idea what it is like, but for those that have they come back. I watch, I observe and more importantly I think about what I am seeing. It is why people either like me or don’t. I pay fucking attention and have an excellent recall for anything done or said in front of me. I was proud of my speech, Josh even gave me a fist bump.
I was beyond proud of my speech. I had a huge honking spiritual boner.
It wasn’t what I had intended to say, but it was ME and me to the core. Big Man would’ve loved the soap box aspect as he always loved my ”on a soap box” moments. Other people who used to game with us would’ve loved it because it was what they have seen for years only in a fun way. When the class left, after several glances my way, nobody likes to be told that you know them better than they do, I was offering to help Josh with his outline I turned to Paul and said, “You are probably going to give me a bad grade, but that was the first speech that I have given that I am proud to say that I gave.” He replied, “I liked it.” He told me where I was marked down one was the “Dad-voice” in his words you can’t persuade people when you are yelling at them. * My response was they pissed me off from word go. He said he got that. The other area of mark down was that I didn’t really give people time to digest what I was yelling at them about. The message was there, but I fired it at them like a shotgun. Well of course I did I was pissed off.
In the end as we talked about it we agreed that I probably had only persuaded the one kid who was already on his way to doing what I was doing, BUT more than likely what would happen to some of them is one day months or years from now they would have a “Remember when that crazy-old guy yelled at me,” (Paul’s words) moments and suddenly get everything that I shotgunned them with.
Guess what, that works out just fine with me.
On the way out to the car I asked Donovan if he thought I gave an angry Dad speech and he says to me, “It was a good Dad speech.”
* In my world you can “persuade” someone when you are yelling at them. You are “persuading” them not to make you yell at them again.