Wednesday, March 23, 2011

So I'm a coward, now what?


I’m a coward, so you might suspect that standing in front of hundreds of mean scientists types isn’t exactly my cup of tea. Luckily I cracked that one a long time ago, and it was thanks largely to the teenage son of a colleague of mine. I’ve never even met him, but his father was recounting how his son liked to go audition. If you’ve never auditioned, boy you’re missing out on the biggest set of butterflies in the stomach possible. I don’t know what it is about the stage and trying to get yourself noticed…huh, it’s kind of like sending a query, now that I think about.  Regardless, if you thought public speaking is hard, try auditioning. It’s got it all, the fear, the anxiety, and the rejection (often to your face).
As such, I was a little shocked to hear that there was a person on this planet who *liked* this phase. But my colleague assured me that yes, in fact, his son loved it. “You know that feeling of butterflies in your stomach? He loves it. He thinks it’s a great rush. He told me that it’s the most alive he’s ever felt, and he can’t get enough of it.”
Now every time I get that OMG I’m about to give a talk/send a query/check my email/apply for a grant feeling, I just remember to enjoy the butterflies while they last.
I wish I knew that kid’s name, credit where it's due.

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