Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Olympics Best Sometimes Not So Good
I'm a little happier with the voicing of my latest column, but still not immensely so. Especially at the end I lose my ability to sound as if I am saying things naturally rather than reading them.
Of course, it doesn't help that I actually am ill at the moment, suffering asthma like when I was a teenager and not really able to speak in full sentences. Also, I had grown sick of reading the column by the time I finally got a completed version. In my first take I had a coughing fit, second take I got distracted by my neighbour's speaking baby talk to his grandchild, third take the phone rang, fourth take the doorbell rang. It ended up taking 45 minutes to record this. I need to get some software that would allow me to edit voice tracks rather than having to get them right in one take.
One thing that's interesting about reading my own words is the challenge of overcoming my tendency to think in short bursts. Three or four words. In reading a complete sentence I will get lost and want to jump back and attempt to repronounce something. My brain tries to restart a sentence while my voice attempts to carry on with the sentence. For a guy who has always thought of himself as a public speaker, it's interesting to see that I am, in fact, not very good at it.
But, yes, I am definitely looking forward to the Olympics. The child bride is planning on coming home early from work Friday so we can watch opening ceremonies. We're going to buy one of those M&S Chinese meals in a box and then basically refuse to leave the house for a fortnight.
We're not the only ones. In response to this week's column I got this e-mail:
"Great article, like you I am compelled. I’m in trouble though under pressure to apply for college funds, something I should of done a year ago. Now I have to fill out paperwork I don’t understand and pack my son up to leave mid-month. Don’t know where I will secure the funds and don’t know how I’ll have the stamina to pack him to go now that the Olympics is getting ready to begin. Told you I was in trouble and its West Indian Celebration week here in Connecticut. Lordy Lord and it’s Trini night on Fri. I choose to skip Trini night and be glued to the tube for opening ceremonies. I’ve been waiting for this since 04. Since 04 I’ve been wishing to be in Bejing in person. Its all good though because I can use the restroom in private (even with the door open) and I can be stress free knowing I am eating beef as opposed to dog/cat or rat. Have a great time watching the Olympics and you better believe when the gymnasts stick (a gymnast wannabe) it I’ll wave smelling salt under my nose myself."
That's unquestionably the best reader response I've ever received. Seriously, I love it. It is full on stream-of-consciousness. Multi-channel coverage was definitely invented for people like this reader -- you get a sense that watching a single event would be intolerably boring for them.