A few weeks ago, I had the
agony pleasure of attending a teacher conference.
Both of the speakers were named Nancy.
The name Nancy is not too common these days. It is one of those names that was huge (according to my mom, Crazy Pat) in the 60s and fizzled shortly thereafter.
I have a friend whose mother AND mother-in-law are both named Nancy. This is almost as rare as finding a 100 bill in an old purse. Yeah, it barely ever happens (although I feel like searching in vain through all of my old purses!)
The two Nancys, or as I referred to them, Nancy Squared or the Dancing Nancys, both took turns going through the PowerPoint presentation. They also both color coordinated their outfits. I have not seen too many royal blue printed dresses, but amazingly enough, they each had one on. Matching Nancys!
Nancy #1 was the rule keeper. She informed us of special “norms” she expected from us throughout the two-day conference. She specifically stated that we were to put away our computers, smart phones and iPads, and were not to use them under any circumstances unless it was break time. As she was sternly giving stating this
ridiculous important rule, everyone was packing their laptops, iPads and phones guiltily away. Funny thing about Rules Nancy, she constantly broke this rule. Each and every time the other Nancy took over presenting, Rules Nancy would get on her iPad and iPhone. Hmmm. Gotta love some irony!
Another interesting thing I learned from Super Rule Breaker Nancy was a phrase called “Equity of Voice.” Unbeknownst to me, this is a very important norm to help motivate those who don’t participate to participate and motivate those, like me, who participate too often, to shut the heck up. Who knew this even had a name! Sadly, the very prestigious sounding “Equity of Voice” did not prompt the quiet ones to speak up, nor did it stop the ones who continually add to the discussion. So much so that when the Nancys were having trouble getting anyone to raise their hands and share (hey, I felt scolded into refraining from using my Equity of Very Chatty Voice), they would shoot over a death stare to my table for a response.
Nancy #2 was a fast speaker who didn’t read directly from the slides, thank goodness. She was intent on getting the information to us so we could break into groups and write on sticky-note-like poster boards with primary colored markers. Fast Talking Nancy also had a stray piece of hair that kept migrating to her lips. Why did I notice this? Because, she had to keep pulling it off of her lipstick. I began to take a tally. The totals: Hair in lipstick – 38, Fast Talking Nancy Lipstickhair – zero. Poor Nancy #2. Oh wait, scratch that. Do not feel sorry for Nancy #2 and her lipstick saturated hair. She started reading directly from the power point slides. Epic power point fail. Ugh.
After awhile, I became frisky. I decided that I would not, under any circumstances, look for a clock in the room. I made it an hour and seven minutes before my eyes deceived me and scoped it out. 9:37. How would I survive not one, but two days of bone-crushing boredom, silly rules and the crazy, dancing, matchy-matching, Power-point reading Nancys? Maybe by sneaking quick, longing looks at my iPad?
I survived by writing about the Nancys, drinking waaaay too much coffee and daydreaming about finding a twenty in an old purse.