Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Open Letter to My Fellow Group Presenters (Part II)

[Above is another photo representation of last week's group project. While ours looked nothing like this, there was definitely some face-hiding in shame, not unlike what is being acted out here. Also, I'm betting this group's presentation was probably more interesting than ours. I'll be the girl on the far right, who seems to be pretending she's not really there, kind of like I was by the time we were done.]

Hello Group.

Yeah, hi. Me again. Last week I gave you some pointers about how to be an effective and contributing member to group presentation project. You know, for the next time. I didn't want to overwhelm you with info so I thought it best to offer just a few tips at once, with the other half to come another time. Like today. Seriously, I do this as a favor to you, so that maybe you won't fucking fail the group you're in next semester. And, like the old couple who took my fucking seat over Thanksgiving, the next person you screw over for an A in class may not be as nice and forgiving as I am. So let's continue, shall we?:
  • So public speaking isn’t a strength. No big deal, it isn’t for most of us. We all get nervous. But remember when the teacher told us last month that points would be deducted if we read directly from our notes instead of simply speaking to the class and making eye contact? I’m pretty sure she wasn’t kidding. Again, we discussed this right? And we all said we were comfortable with our material. So for the next time, please for God’s sake DON’T READ DIRECTLY FROM YOUR NOTES FOR THE ENTIRE DURATION OF THE SPEECH.
  • If in the middle of our speech we realize we made a mistake, it is often OK to just continue on and not acknowledge to the class that we messed up. Doesn’t look so good for us. Chances are, the class stopped listening to what you were saying about 3 minutes into your seven-minute spiel. They didn’t even notice that you said “Canada” and not “Cuba" (its OK, I totally understand how you could get them confused). Honestly, you could have said “Thousands of new cases in my va-jay-jay” instead of “Thousands of new cases in Cuba” and they probably wouldn’t have caught it. For real: I saw one guy in the class haul out his laptop and check his Facebook while you were talking, for chrissakes.
  • Related to the above point, after we do make a mistake and feel some strange need to acknowledge it publically, resist the urge to turn around, look me in the eye and say to me – me! – “Oh. I just messed up.” While I am oddly flattered that you told me as though you thought I could actually do something about your flub, you’d be wrong. Perhaps you thought I’d break into an interpretive dance to somehow distract the class from your mistake? As cool as that might have been, I’m not that spontaneous. Bottom line: If you make a mistake, KEEP IT TO YOURSELF and MOVE ON.

That wasn't so bad, was it?

Good luck with finals!

PS - No, I am still not going to help you. You bitches are still on your own for that one.


FitnessNerd said...

I really want to see the interpretative dance. Care to do a blogspot video?

I feel your pain on group work. It sucks, and you should give them all wrapped baggies of pooh for Christmas!

minijonb said...

i hate group projects. when i go back to school next year, i'm going to make a deal with them: they only get my tuition money if they have no group projects. i'm not joking.

Ellen Aim said...

Damn that made me laugh.

And no, you weren't supposed to break out in dance, you were supposed to break out in SONG, dammit! I mean, "Oh, I just messed up," could not be a bigger song cue if you ask me.

You could have rocked that.

Airam said...

Your PS is why I think you rock.

Mr. Shain said...

frankly, i expected a little more out of this post. you come off as a little judgmental, which i like, but also a little angry, which i'm undecided about. i'm glad the power outage of over 1m americans has not affected your ability to blog about trivialities of your daily life.

also, can we get a response from your group members?

Michael5000 said...

I'd take a power outage and ice storm any day, before I'd do a group presentation with nimrods.

But I agree with Mr. Shain that a look at the event from the other group members would be highly diverting. Kind of a Rashomon sort of deal. Could you arrange that?

KAZ said...

These two posts should be used by anyone who teaches 'Presentation Skills' - briliant.

RevRee said...

My comment has nothing to do with your post, but would you be interested in some warming of the bodies with me?


Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Quite a group you got there! I like that you are their fearless leader.

Shaun said...

I love it when you butch it up!