Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Power Point Presentation as Performance

Yes, I know, it's been days since I've posted. I am tired, way tired and have one more deadline to deal with before the July 4 weekend. Life is good. I am not complaining, just learning ever more about myself, how I operate, the expectations I have for myself and my limits or lack of. I pull it off, with a price.
I crashed at 7:00 last night, after giving an afternoon pre-presentation of the 'artful interventions' for 1002 Washington Ave. to the folks from the city who are most involved with this project. They needed to see and weigh in on it before the real presentation tomorrow afternoon at 4:30 at city hall.
I've spent the better part of four days preparing images and script, interfacing with Studio Red and the artists. Still getting emails from the artists. And I spent hours over last weekend giving structure to the presentation. First I'd focus on the types of interventions, then I'd change direction and talk about what will happen on each floor. That seemed confusing, so I reversed direction and simply speak about the types of art, noting spaces in the facility where each will be installed. Not only did I work hard for days on this thing, I also worked myself into 'sales mode' with a mix of coffee and lots of practice time. I don't do one without the other.
All went well yesterday. And feeling energized by the pre-presentation, I headed off to do errands and didn't return home until almost 7:00. Then, as I said, I crashed. Fell into a deep sleep until after 10:00. Sort of heard the phone ring from time to time, but couldn't move.
Then, way after 10:00 I shared a conversation about my day on the phone and was given a huge insight.
"You're like a performer," he said, "It's as if you've been on stage all evening and then, after the performance, you've still got all this energy and need time to come down."
Something I'd not thought of during all these years of gearing up for special events, public appearances, meeting, speeches, parties, presentations. Yeah, that fits really well.
"Performers need time to come down. Some drink, do drugs, talk to people until day break."
I realized that I left yesterday's meeting as a performer would leave the theater or a sports arena. And after any good performance, I leave energized, perhaps 'in the zone' or simply high. And in that space and time of 'high' after the performance, when I should be taking time to 'come down', I rush onward. Perhaps with great discipline, I would head for a yoga class or a long, long walk and come down in an orderly manner.
Yesterday, I took that burst of 'high' energy and headed out to do a few late afternoon errands and, if you know me well enough by now, you know that I also went shopping. Hey, I rarely have more than a single drink because of the headache consequence, I don't do illegal drugs and I don't talk endlessly with friends until daybreak.
So, typically, coming down means a visit to The Guild Shop, Half Price Books, Brazos, Borders, Anthropolgie. These are the places where I go because each of these destinations involve a 'search' for treasure. I like searching. It's a process, a feast of looking, of finding, of capturing. It's about a lot more than shopping. I find my way, if indeed I ever lost it.
Here I will digress because yesterday after the meeting, I remembered the postcard I received from Top Drawer, the one they send that says, "It's Your Birthday Month. Come by for a 25% discount on all purchases." Yesterday being June 29, I figured I'd better get there pronto. It's been a year since I purchased a bra. By the way, the image below is not from Top Drawer. It's a Dick Wray take on a photograph I love by Edouard Boubat. And there's a bra to love.
Top Drawer is that place where my daughter Mary and I go about every 12 - 18 months to buy bras because a saleswoman actually stands in the fitting room and secures breasts in cups, knows exactly what bra size is the right one - in each brand - and brings one after another until I am sated with comfort and lacy delight. Then, for a year or so, my bras are comfortable because they truly fit. Then the elastic stretches and announces it's time to revisit Top Drawer.
Well, that was a long digression on bras. The point I really wanted to make was about this use or mis-use of energy after a 'performance'. I arrived home with new bras (note: plural) and Vietnamese take-out and within minutes I hit the bed and slept until 10:00 p.m. Out. Couldn't move. Slept.
So today, energy is low and I am procrastinating by writing this post. Then I may procrastinate by doing more errands - a trip out for allergy shots, a bank deposit and on to UPS to return the dreadful AT&T U-verse equipment. Then I'll settle into work mode with Doris again - until it's over sometime late tonight. She's due here at 5:00.
And tomorrow, I work myself into sales mode again with caffeine and practice. I'll get to the theater on time with just the right amount of coffee, wearing the right costume and prepared to sell like I sold dresses at Bloomingdale's or political candidates like Charles Percy and Eleanor Tinsley or the East End Strategic Vision or whatever it is that catches me. The performer will see this thing through and have fun along the way. The building will be fabulous. I've no doubt. All it takes is a very, very focused effort. And in this case, the work of very talented artists and a capable, enthusiastic architectural team. It'll all come together.
And I'll be wearing beautiful and beautifully fitting bras all the way through this year long building process. Life is good.

1 comment:

Sharon said...

Wishing you smooth sailing tomorrow.