Didn't I tell you it'd be fun?
Debriefing: A one-time, semi-structured conversation with an individual who has just experienced a stressful or traumatic event. In most cases, the purpose of debriefing is to reduce any possibility of psychological harm by informing people about their experience or allowing them to talk about it. (Wikipedia)
Could there be a better term for talking about what happened during this seminal event?
Seminal: (You know you smirked at that): sem·i·nal (sm-nl)
1. Of, relating to, containing, or conveying semen or seed.
2. Of, relating to, or having the power to originate; creative.
3. Highly influential in an original way; constituting or providing a basis for further development: a seminal idea in the creation of a new theory.
We are therefore now going to "de-brief" for a "seminal" event, and you'd better stop snickering right now, you middle school boy disguised in a mom-suit.
I have had way too much caffeine today.
These are some observations I found amusing about this event that I'm wondering if you noticed, too. Please don't be offended if you recognize yourself in these observations; you should know by now that I'm a jokester, and that I love laughing, and that I'm not laughing at you, per se, just sort of, "near" you:
~ Whispering. A lot of people felt the need to whisper their posts. I’m not sure why, unless they thought that whispering somehow protected them from really being seen/heard. Now, when you think about the reason for “I See What You’re Saying,” there’s a conflict of interest in not wanting to be seen/heard, but this project, as fun as it was, apparently fostered a lot of emotional ambivalence. It was like, “Look at me!—NO! Just kidding! Don’t look at me! Yes! Go ahead! Look at me!”
~ Lockdowns. Many of us locked husbands and children out of the taping room or locked them into other rooms, insuring at least 26 seconds of complete privacy.
~ Lighting Issues. Many of us apparently did not excel in film class, as we (chief of sinners here) taped much of our posts completely backlit and in the shadows. However, this could again be our inner turmoil of not wanting to be seen taking precedence over our decision to participate. Jekylls and Hydes are we.
~ Scripting. Some of us used scripts; some of us did not. I have been accused of being a closet musical lover because I appeared to know the words to the Sound of Music theme. That was a reuse. I had printed out the lyrics in giant font and taped them to the camera in three sheets of 8 ½ by 11. And I still messed them up. Mainly because the dopey dude who published the lyrics wrote “bird who is learning to prey” instead of “pray,” which totally threw me off. I did that in one take, I’ll have you know.
~ Animals. Dogs outnumbered cats, but there was also mention of skunks, opossums and snakes. One child had a snake wrapped around her neck, and I am still not over that trauma. One person shaved her cat which made the cat look like an opossum, so it was sort of an equal mix of the good, the bad, the ugly. I do believe I featured the only pet doing sensational tricks like “speak” and “No, come over here.”
~ Douches. One phrase I never expected to hear in this project was “shopping cart full of douches, about 30 of them.” There goes the "family-friendly" blog rating right out the window.
~ Children. There were some:
One paced back and forth in front of the camera, mesmerized by ... himself. Mom of pacing child--hello. Milk this adorableness for all it’s worth. Set up that camera during the day and let that kid be a star for as loooong as he wants. You will be able to read books, do your nails, nap, grow a garden, take up tatting, etc. The whole while he will be pacing, admiring himself quite contentedly. You are so blessed. And so smart, if you follow my advice.
~ Another child, off-camera, de-pantsed himself. One could say he began the debriefing early.
~ Another child happily filled her diaper while Mom talked. Personally, this was a high point for me. Real moms are not fazed by extraneous grunts and straining or sulphurous emissions. Those two sounds are just phonemes of another language moms speak fluently: Poopish. The show must go on!
~ Body Image. Several of us are very self-conscious about our body parts. Interestingly, nostrils ranked high on self-disparaging list. We were not so self-conscious about our nostrils until this project, and so now we have something new to obsess over. If only Hollywood would suddenly decide that big nostrils are “in,” we’d be golden.
~ Some of us worried a tad bit about our weight. One blogger informed us that if you shoot your video with a Blackberry or other phone, you can expect the usual 10 lb addition attributed to photography to be nearer to 75 lbs over! Note to self: No pics from camera phone on blog--ever. They say never say “never.” But I’m saying it right now: “never.”
~ Many of us were not sure why our videos started with a still shot of our faces in the most twisted, pained expressions. I believe computer gremlins of the Enemy did that to us.
~ Outsiders. We had one “MeeMaw” and one Starbucks friend. We almost met one hairdresser, but the blogger forgot to tape that part, although the audio is somewhat decipherable. She did, however, remember to tape the inside of her camera case, which is important for every family to have record of.
~ General Disorientation and Confusion. Several of us did not know how to relate to talking to “no one.” We talked to keyboards, talked to monitors, pretended we had imaginary friends in front of us, etc.
~ Violence. One blogger, whom I shall call “Bama Melle,” threatened to pop a political leader. That same person threatened to pop herself for not having her act together in life. That particular post has now been rated “BV” for “Blog Violence.”
~ Re-takes. Many of us confessed to needing several shots before “perfecting” our videos. Some claimed it took tens of takes, others claimed hundreds. Which group is lying? The tens, I believe.
Male contributors: One. And he showed off by reading Shakespeare to the accompaniment of gunfire behind him. I found that strangely soothing.
~ Common phrases translated:
“I got nothin’.” = "I’m having a synaptic lapse and cannot fill up the air with any words right this minute. Come back, one year."
“Keepin’ it real” = “My child’s diaper is stinky; I’m not wearing a bra and I haven’t brushed my teeth today. Take me or leave me.”
And to that, to all of you, I have to say, I shall indeed take you all, in all of your realness, BECAUSE I KEN LEE YOU!
The big Q: "Are we going to do this again?!"
Yes, yes we are. But here's where I could use your input.
1. How often is good without being overkill? [That is the worst sentence I've ever composed, btw.] For instance: Yearly, Semi-Annually, Quarterly? I'd love to do a Christmas one, but that's such a busy time. And yet, as one person suggested, we could do favorite ornaments, favorite foods, fav decs, traditions, etc. Or smiling. Because like Buddy the Elf, "Smiling is my favorite!"
2. One lovely blogger suggested calling it "The Brew," as a ref to the name of my blog, but also in ref to that high-brow TV show called, "The View." Do we have opinions on things? I think we do. They don't have to be political in nature. They could be opinions about which TV show has the all-time best theme song. Different opinions would be great because, you know, it takes "Diffrent Strokes to rule the world, yes it does."
But I promise you this: I will not make mine 18 minutes long next time. What was I thinking??? I'm so sorry about that. You all did that part perfectly. In fact, I think you did all of it perfectly, and I think we discovered a new venue for widening and deepening our friendly neighborhood blogging community.
I have been on an emotional buzz for the last 48 hours; you all have blessed me so much. It's nearly 1:00 AM, so I've got to go to sleep because now the party's over, and I have to go back to making copies, cleaning up Zoe's poo and burning my family's suppers.
I hope you all come back for a 2nd Cup of Coffee whenever you can. I'm always brewing something up here.