Wallace Baine, Baine Street: Dying a ...

Wallace Baine, Baine Street: Dying a little behind a podium

There are 10 comments on the Santa Cruz Sentinel story from Jan 31, 2010, titled Wallace Baine, Baine Street: Dying a little behind a podium. In it, Santa Cruz Sentinel reports that:

I think I first heard the joke from Jerry Seinfeld. Reacting to a poll that showed people fear public speaking even more than they fear death, he said that if that's true, then at a funeral, you're better off in the coffin than doing the eulogy.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Santa Cruz Sentinel.

RobtA

Newark, CA

#1 Jan 31, 2010
Public speaking is hardest when you believe what you're saying, or when you care. That's why speaking at the Gailies was a bit stressful. If you want to do public speaking in a stress-free manner, go into politics.
Claudia

Long Beach, CA

#2 Jan 31, 2010
Terrific article. But I disagree with the commenter above; I've always found public speaking to be easiest when I both knew and believed in what I was saying. I think dissembling in public would be very hard on one's health.
Ex Liberal

United States

#3 Jan 31, 2010
But if you bring a "Tele-prompter" with you whenever you speak as does Obama as demonstrated last week while speaking in front of a small group of 2nd and 3rd graders ,you'll never feel the inner pressure of public speaking unless you can't speak from print! What a riot! Obama actually brought a tele-prompter to speak to the little kids in the school in Virginia. His eyes were darting from side to side viewing then reading from his tele-prompter all the while, the little kids were way down below his waist line listening and looking up toward his head! What a riot!!!!!!
Ex Liberal

United States

#4 Jan 31, 2010
I took public speaking in both HS and College! I was always nervous before beginning to speak. I always selected, researched and organized my speech topics to the point I was comfortable with my knowledge of the information presented and I believed the information was researched to be as factual as possible. So yes, I too believed in the information I was about to present. Once I began my speech, it was easy to present the information as I only needed to glance down at my notation outline to ensure I maintained the continuity of the speech! You probably noticed the advantage of knowing the speech, its content and belief in honesty in presentation of a speech when you watched Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin speak at the Republican convention in 2008. Her teleprompter malfunctioned and paused too long during anticipated applause breaks which resulted in teleprompter posting her speech at a point far behind the actual speech she was presenting. She immediately stopped reading the teleprompter and simply resorted to presenting her speech using her note outline and memory! Palin later related she simply continued speaking from the heart as she had memorized her speech! Her speech enamored those listening to her as she appeared to be open and honest speaking from the heart!
CND

Beverly Hills, CA

#5 Jan 31, 2010
A podium is a raised platform on which a speaker (or an athlete, or an orchestra conductor) stands. A lectern is the upright desk-like object on which he or she places her papers. So you'd have be be pretty far gone to be dying behind a podium.
Grinder

Berkeley, CA

#6 Jan 31, 2010
Ex Liberal wrote:
I took public speaking in both HS and College! I was always nervous before beginning to speak. I always selected, researched and organized my speech topics to the point I was comfortable with my knowledge of the information presented and I believed the information was researched to be as factual as possible. So yes, I too believed in the information I was about to present. Once I began my speech, it was easy to present the information as I only needed to glance down at my notation outline to ensure I maintained the continuity of the speech! You probably noticed the advantage of knowing the speech, its content and belief in honesty in presentation of a speech when you watched Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin speak at the Republican convention in 2008. Her teleprompter malfunctioned and paused too long during anticipated applause breaks which resulted in teleprompter posting her speech at a point far behind the actual speech she was presenting. She immediately stopped reading the teleprompter and simply resorted to presenting her speech using her note outline and memory! Palin later related she simply continued speaking from the heart as she had memorized her speech! Her speech enamored those listening to her as she appeared to be open and honest speaking from the heart!
Really? Huh.I could not tell the difference. Using a teleprompter is a skill maybe that is why I couldn't discern the difference. Ms. Palin's speaking style is a lot like her book- shrill, shallow and lacking critical thought.
Grinder

Berkeley, CA

#7 Jan 31, 2010
Ex Liberal wrote:
But if you bring a "Tele-prompter" with you whenever you speak as does Obama as demonstrated last week while speaking in front of a small group of 2nd and 3rd graders ,you'll never feel the inner pressure of public speaking unless you can't speak from print! What a riot! Obama actually brought a tele-prompter to speak to the little kids in the school in Virginia. His eyes were darting from side to side viewing then reading from his tele-prompter all the while, the little kids were way down below his waist line listening and looking up toward his head! What a riot!!!!!!
Seems as though President Obama got your memo. He put a thumping on the GOP last week in Baltimore without the use of a visual aid. Perhaps the GOP should consider learning how to use a teleprompter so that can communicate more than a Frank Luntz talking point without looking like stiffs. However, there is much to be said for being natural.
That is

United States

#8 Jan 31, 2010
Ex Liberal wrote:
But if you bring a "Tele-prompter" with you whenever you speak as does Obama as demonstrated last week while speaking in front of a small group of 2nd and 3rd graders ,you'll never feel the inner pressure of public speaking unless you can't speak from print! What a riot! Obama actually brought a tele-prompter to speak to the little kids in the school in Virginia. His eyes were darting from side to side viewing then reading from his tele-prompter all the while, the little kids were way down below his waist line listening and looking up toward his head! What a riot!!!!!!
all you got. S uc ks to be you.
thanks wallace

Brisbane, CA

#9 Jan 31, 2010
Great article, my favorite that you've ever written. If I could only get over my fear of public speaking I could transfer to a four-year college and get a B.A. But I'd rather die.
Laura

Santa Cruz, CA

#10 Feb 1, 2010
I have to give a plug here for Toastmasters. It's a very well-designed and highly supportive program that takes people from wherever they are, speaking-wise, and helps them improve, in incremental baby steps. Everyone in the group understands your fears.(I like to say "no one joins Toastmasters because they are comfortable with public speaking, so you are not alone!)

Both my husband and I have gotten a lot of help from Toastmasters. There are several clubs in our area - just Google Toastmasters and click on "Find a Club".

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