Sunday 18 January 2015

I totally bombed in my public speaking yesterday... I'm still alive today!

Well, my Zebra story totally fell flat yesterday afternoon....

As I walked off the stage to a totally stunned, bemused, catch-no-ball audience, you can hear the crickets creaking... 

Awkward to say the least!

You know what I learnt?

It's one thing to write cryptic stories and use obscure metaphors in print, it's another ball game altogether when you tell that same story LIVE in person to an audience who can give you immediate feedback through their body language... 

I should have wore a blindfold.

Well, at least I didn't get booed off the stage! How's that for looking at the bright side of things!?

I'm a cheerleader remember?

I had fun! Not the kind I expected, but it was still fun! 

It's been quite some time since I felt so inept, so totally "blur like sotong", so utterly and completely stupid in front of so many people...

It's fun to laugh at myself once in a while. It's good reminder not to take myself too seriously.

Friends introducing friends

B, 15HWW, and EY were there. It was the first time I met B so here's looking at you kid!

I was like playing the role of mama-san:

"John! So nice to see you again! Do you know Peter is here? You must meet him! Come dear! I'll introduce him to you!

Peter, this is John; John, this is Peter.

Have fun boys!"

Never meet your Nemesis up close

I regretted so much that I finally met up with the fisherman.

I was so hoping he got a 超及白 face so I can continue to poke him at will. He deserved it what?

But why oh why!!!

Why must you turn out to be a refined gentleman!? 

And have that friendly uncle next door personality!?
This is not making it easy for me... How to poke you in future?

I don't care! 

We must continue to push each other to our intellectual limits! 

Cannot because I've become Oliver Twist standing next to you that you go easy on me OK?

Don't treat me with kid's gloves.

Someone anonymous; someone interesting

After the seminar, I saw a couple remaining at the auditorium.

Like I normally do when I travel, I just went up to say hello to complete strangers.

And I'm glad I did!

The man turned out to be a blogger and he hinted that I've commented at his blog and he did likewise over here. 

But he wishes to be anonymous - not wishing to reveal his name or his blog.

I respect that.

We had quite an interesting conversation even though the time spent was short. 

He's a man of leisure too, and writes for the pleasure of it. Not those who writes for world peace or to build up a side business ;)

After our conversation, I immediately put a stop when my mind tried to CSI who is this blogger. 

I believe in 因缘 (karma). 

Let things take their natural cause. If he is ready to say hello to me without the mask of anonymity, he will.

Making lemonade from lemons

See? Despite a fall, there's always something good that comes out of it.

Would this have happened if I had stayed in the comfort of my home and planning how to improve my public speaking?

Just go out and do it!

Crash got sound one!

Or in this case - total silence...



  1. Hi SMOL,

    Sound like I really missed a lot. Sound like a gathering of sort.

    Happy new year pre-reunion.

    That's more gratifying than the little boo boo la. You man-whore rememeber

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      Ya! That's the redeeming part!

      Saying hello to other bloggers and readers :)

      I hope the organiser will release the video on Youtube or something.

      I had a little brain freeze on stage and I think I said it out loud!?


  2. I think the silence was more of a stunned realisation. Excellent performance Jared, I'll surely be looking out for future ones from you!

    1. Thank you Mr Lee!

      I'll console myself just like "performance art", my kind of "song and dance" is not mainstream in Singapore yet.... I very Ah Q or what?

      If anyone dares to invite me to give a speech after Saturday's performance, I'll certainly do it again!

      I am a Trader. One bad trade doesn't phase me. Lick my wounds I may, but come the next day, I'll get right back into the markets and do my war cry:

      "Is that all? Is that all you've got? Bring it on!"

  3. Hi SMOL,

    Who ask you to dress like Steve Jobs? If you wore Mickey Mouse T-shirt with bermuda and suspenders, you would have nailed the performance. Dress for the part mah! You thought wear plain plain clothing then people can focus on your tofu silky smooth face is it? Now you know you wasted your SKII. :P

    Eh, Steve Jobs no sing song on stage one and you sang Hokkien song some more. What 干一杯? Audience want to hear 爱拼才会赢! And then ask people to imagine they were zebras. People want to imagine they are carnivore, go into market make killing one. You tell people they herbivore, 25% chance kena eaten by lion if they fight back. Some more fight for survival only. Then also never tell people how to fight back. This kind of proposition where got sexy one. Call yourself man-whore some more! People attend seminars want answers. You throw them questions. You win lor! :P

    But hor I got clap loud loud for you hor. And I honoured my promise, left only after your performance. Guess where I sat? Next to the exit, of course! Planned my escape route before entering the hall. You proud of me? LOL!

    1. Endrene,

      Hello! Steve Jobs wore turtlenecks lah! My turtlenecks are all in storage waiting for autumn to come....

      My getup is Simon Cowell ;)

      Talking about getup, you really into Retro. Your baju really de nice.
      Personally I would prefer bareback halterneck as that would complete the Bond girl look. Standing next to you, I wished I were in a Tux...

      I'll flash my golden Roblex watch and whisper to you:

      "Dear, its time for makan. Do you prefer wanton or fishball noodles? I know a hawker centre that's fabulous!"

      So that's you! I saw a shard of light flashing from the exit door and was thinking...

      "Wah lau eh! Limpeh haven't get off the stage got people oredi rushing out? So very never give face! So lude!"


    2. Simon Cowell? Then you need to wear a wig. ROFL!

      I also epic fail lah. Dress was supposed to be bohemian look. My latest loot from eBay. The skirt was so long it kept trapping the heels. Wear this dress very prone to ‘扑街’, literally!

      What halter neck bareback dress? Michelle Yeoh got wear that meh? Ok, in your next gig, I come in tuxedo and you can wear bareback halter neck!

      Woei! I where got so no manners one. The person who rushed out the door before you got off the stage wasn’t me lah. And please don’t judge lor. Poor fellow might be fighting back the torrents of motion just to hear you finish your story. I left at 1.45pm after the next speaker finished his presentation. Went 313 Somerset and kena robbed at Food Republic. One teeny weeny bowl of sweet potato soup charge $3! Luckily, I got a few good shopping deals. Spent money to save money. Super clever! :P

    3. Endrene,

      Very funny!

      Eh? When I picture Bond girl, I always see them in evening gowns ;)

      Hmm... That's what my ex likes to remind on how much money she is helping me save by shopping only during a SALE.

      I always have a puzzled look when I reach for my wallet. Hey! She got Masters so I trust her Math!

  4. HI SMOL

    You're certainly doing good considering you're the first speaker . You lighted up the ambience considering the "preview" before the actual speeches by you and other speakers were some kind of bore technical stuffs which not much of the crowd can comprehend much.

    1. Small Time Investor,

      Hey! Was that beefy guy in the over-stretched white T-shirt - with seams that will burst anytime - you?

      Eh! The Zebra story is used in my Leadership workshops, and I must say only 5% of the participants ever noticed the lions - never mind even asking questions about them!?

      Very perceptive comment in your blog!

      Although I must say your photography skill is very meh...

      3 possibilities:

      1) It's a fluke. Blind cat caught dead mice. Totally random.

      2) You had training in Pedagogy. Then nothing special.

      3) You're a natural.

      If it's 3, don't take this gift lightly. I don't have it.

      I only have occasional sparks of brilliance.

      These 5% of people can spot details that the majority misses. If applied to investing or trading, they are sometimes called contrarians or early smart money movers if the review is done in retrospect. Jim Rogers is like that.

      You'll do great in creative brain-storming sessions in marketing or advertising too! If everyone thinks alike, what's the point again?

      When I were leading projects, I'll fight tooth and nail to have people like you in my team.

      Those that plan a lot focus on what they can see ahead of them; I prefer to expand my field of vision FIRST, then what to do will come naturally ;)

    2. Hey peng you ~ although i'm wearing white T-shirt too , but i'm not that beefy guy ( you and that beefy guy should be the most 2 prominent in the crowd ) I'm too shy to say hello to you la peng you ~

      Pardon for my bad photography skills , though it does wonders to your sparkling head ~

      There's this 4th possibly : I'm a natural in being random. hehehe.

      I was visualizing and listening clearly to what you're saying when being the zebra . I was wondering " wait...a minute .. you say hippo , giraffes but no lions ? "

      When you said " Now open your eyes , where are you standing ? "

      I was thinking " Boomz , i opened my eyes and saw a lion face straight infront of me ? "

      I knew then you could have "laid a trap " .

    3. Small Time Investor,

      My head shinny shinny wait people thought got "halo"!

      Many learned the hard way especially when buying insurance from "friends" - these are hyenas we didn't see coming.

      Your reflection at your blog made my day!

      Whether random or not you know best. If it's not, remember to sharpen the saw ;)

      Its your own cultivation.

  5. I can see you but you can't. Ha Ha!

    I was watching you doing your weekend networking activity. In fact, you have passed by me a several times. I think my stupid smile finally pecah lobang. LOL!

    1. CW,

      Still dare to say!

      You winked at me you know!!!???

      I was thinking... Bloody hell! Did I misread SKII for men?

      I use SKII for men to appeal to the ladies; NOT TO MEN like you!

      You har! Do a oneupmanship on me. You win liao lor!

      Come with 2 lady companions and do a Chu Liu Xiang act on me!


      Next time I must hire 4 young Poly girls as my entourage, and say in your face:

      "Li wu bo?"

  6. SMOL,

    I think your presentation was incomplete. There is still a round 2 where we will gather round a watering hole just like the Zebras ya?

    1. Derek,

      We must learn from the ladies.

      A smart lady will never let her man feel "complete" when it comes to their relationship. You want more? Then come home to dinner lor ;)

      When a man feels "complete", he'll start to look for....

      Want to hear my Elephant story?

      You buying drinks?


    2. But we are not girls ma. LoL.

      Sure. First round on me. How about the last Sat of this month after Mr. X event?

    3. Oh! So that Derek is you!

      Sure! We drink milk OK?

      Next day I have to pretend to work...

  7. Hey SMOL,

    Hehe, I am still anonymous :) Suan me, poke me and do what we always do when the lights are off! When the lights are switched on, we pretend we don't know each other LOL!

    Anonymity can be mysterious and alluring - you can be whatever the other person want you to be ;)

    1. LP,

      Woah.... Who wants to do anything with you when the lights are off !!!!????

      You and CW trying to sabo me is it?

      What's with your innuendos and aspersions?

      You get outta here! LOL!

      I heard married couples got use role-play to keep their passion alive. Go to singles bar and pretend to be strangers and pick each other out.

      This week husband pretend to be airline captain, next week pretend to be investment banker. Ditto for the wife - nurse this week, model the next.

      That sounds like fun!

  8. temperament,

    Trust but verify.

    No lah. The first speaker slot is the only place that I can fit in if I were to stay true to my no - "If you believe me follow me" kind of koyok.

    Like one Enlighten being once said... You do your own cultivation; I do mine. Don't you expect me to do the cultivation for you!

  9. Hi SMOL

    Finally good to meet up with you :) You definitely looks much cooler than what I imagined in my head. Hmm.

    I enjoyed your story actually, especially after you told us to close off our eyes and see where we choose to sit in the auditorium. Actually, we were seated next to a couple of pretty ladies, think they are lifestyle bloggers, so we follow where they went. LOL. The Zebra looking for food.

    1. B,

      You got potential!

      Of course I look cool. No hair is cooler one ;)

      If I wear shades with black trench coat, I look like Morphius from Matrix.

      Married man. You cannot talk like that!

      Must be tactical.

      Next time say you found a shady spot with pretty flowers nearby ;)

      Who wants to sit next to cactus? Unless you are into S&M that sort of thing...

    2. Wah got pretty ladies! Never say earlier in the itinerary! :p

      The IA

    3. IA,

      Sex sells ;)

      That's why toad people like me must do song and dance - if not who will look at me?


  10. Hi SMOL,

    I missed all the fun despite paying and more importantly looking forward to it.

    Unfortunately I could not be back on time due to a business trip. Flight touched down Sat morning and I was seriously too tired.

    I really hope we can meet up next time with you, B and rest of people.


    Can I refund my $8??? Haha LOL

    1. Rolf,

      Don't look at me, I'm not the organiser. It was pro bono for me. I guess your $ went into the after event dinner for the speakers and helpers :)

      Thank you!

      You know what? Around 10% of the seats were empty. That's why airlines and hotels practice overbooking. Quite a few never turned up like you...

      If there's a gathering, I'll chio you!
      I hope we all can meet up in a informal and casual environment too.

    2. What a waste!

      Actually, I have requested to purchase another two tickets but organizer said no more.

      Otherwise, there will be 4 lady companions :-)

    3. CW,

      Imagine what an entrance that would make!

      You Chu Liu Xiang you!

      Envy :)

    4. Yeah... It's a waste.. But the organizer deserve the small token from irresponsible people like me. Hehe. Bo bian, never expect the trip to last through Sat!

      Busy busy busy... in work, company just being acquired, at home bb cries acquired my time.

      Shoot me a mail, will join in the fun next time. Hope it will be soon.

      Do not "Chio" me but "Jio" me? Do not mind u invite more chio ones! CW can join with many of them... LOL

    5. Alamak!

      My Hokkien also broken!

      Thanks for pointing my spelling mistake. So embarrassing!

    6. Hahaha now we know why some of the spaces in the auditorium were empty. Rolf bought those spaces in lump sum and didnt turn up kekeke.
      That's why we had to have a space in between the pretty ladies. Imagine if it were full. Then bo pian no reason. This is the reason why we chose to focus on Smol speech in the end. Zen power.

    7. B,


      Let's blame Rolf! We all give him "pleasure".

  11. Ha! Ha!
    CW, you are very funny leh. Are you hinting to SMOL?

    1. temperament,

      CW not hinting.

      He already spread his peacock tail and have beaten me to submission.

      He is making sure I know he is the alpha male ;)

      Well, at least I beat CW in one area - my stomach bigger than his!


  12. Great work SMOL! I didn't manage to make it since I was in TEKONG. But from the comments all feedbacks, it seems like you have made your point through and get everyone involved entertained a lot! You have done well! :)

    The IA

    1. IA,

      Well, I hope so.

      The whole experience was like telling a joke and no one laughed.



      But it's cool.

      Life is about experiences.

      Done it; did it. Now I've let it go ;)

  13. Hi SMOL,

    I don't think it was that bad... We just need time for your story to sink in, and there is indeed some truth to that. I still thought about it for quite a while, definitely an interesting talk.. Anyway, nice seeing you in person!

    1. Hello Jes,

      Glad you were there too!

      Maybe it's true what you say. I should have given more time to the audience for that "ah ha" moment to occur...

      I am happy you find my "performance art" talk interesting ;)

  14. Your topic title catches my attention. I have had my own embarrassing moments, so I always have a soft spot for those who shared my plight before.

    There is one Youtube that I watched to console myself after an absolutely "humiliating" episode.

    By the way, although I am known among financial bloggers to protect my anonymity, that anonymous guy is not me. I have never attended any blogger event or met anyone in real life in blogosphere. Only my wife knows my real identity and she hates to read my blog.

    1. hyom hyom,


      Sometimes we just have to do it, fall, pick ourselves up, and do it over again ;)

      Well, at least I got stories to tell at the next party!

      I respect your anonymity. Everyone of us have their own comfort level on how much to share to the world at large.


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