Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

16 August 2008

30 seconds

My 30 second spot is now up on the Progressive Women's Voices site. I'm not going to embed it because I think it would drive me crazy to see that video for a few more days.

In order to get this video I took a zillion takes, made a lot of fumbles, and was extremely nervous, which I think is evident on the video. After I saw the video, I was disappointed. I was hoping that somewhere in the 15 minutes I was taped I had done 30 seconds of good stuff without the office needing to splice the video. But seriously I was that nervous.

Why was I nervous? It was a combination of a camera being in the room and knowing that countless people would or could see this video. But honestly it's the thought of being wrong.

I've seen it a lot of more these days...people putting out their opinion and then saying, "But I'm not speaking for all [insert group here]." Well, honestly you are. And getting to that place was hard for me. For many years I was speaking, representing women/Latinas/feminists and I knew it. It wasn't easy and I would qualify my points. But in the end, we are all representatives of who we are. It's not fair, but it is what it is. If I'm on CNN talking about women in science and the need for on-site child care, I'm representing myself and the women I'm speaking for. And that's why I'm nervous. What if I say a statistic that is not just kinda wrong, but flat-out-totally wrong? I'm slowly embracing the idea of girlifying math & science, but what if I turn off that girl who does want to build jet fighters? How do I talk to all girls?

Simply, I can't.

Maybe I could craft my message to talk about building jet fighters or water irrigation sytems. Maybe that's pitting the two things against each other.

Last night I directed my husband to the site so he can see the video. Amazingly I thought I SOUNDED fine. The fact that I couldn't see the video, couldn't see where they edited it...I was pretty darn ok with what was being played. I was able to focus on one thing - my words. When I'm watching myself, I worry about my words, how I'm sitting, how big my eyes get when I'm excited, where are my hands, does my jewelry look ok, and even if the background was good.

Maybe I need to trick myself into believing that when I'm taping such things that I'm sitting in the Heartland Cafe talking with Michael while people around me are enjoying their coffee and whole grain pancakes. I dunno if that would work if I ever make it on to a TV show where the host is accusing me of things rather than engaging in a conversation the way Michael does. Hopefully one day I'll find out.

5 comments:

girl, i didn't read the rest of your post before I clicked over and watched the video, and while I was watching, i was thinking, dang, I love her necklace! it looks so good with her outfit!

you "do" your style well, your voice did not shake or flutter (as mine would have!!!!) I think that it's going to take practice to get as comfortable on the inside as you looked on the outside. I know when I started teaching, I almost threw up every day for about three weeks into class. not only was I terrified of speaking in front of groups of people, but I knew those kids were *looking* at me and judging me with their little "i am 20, young and nubile" eyes.

The only thing that helped make it better, to the point that I am confident now, is repetition--doing it every single day over and over again--to the point I finally found my own style--my own way of talking and interacting with the students.

Once you find that way of talking and interacting with the camera, you'll be popping off hundreds of these things a day!!! It will be, hey, can I have an interview, and you'll be, of course, baby, talk w/ my publicist and she'll schedule you in between the thirty other people who want to interview me!

Good job! :)

I completely agree with what you said. We need to encourage more girls to go into math, science, and engineering.

So....I went there thinking the worst because that's kinda what you set me up for sending me over there after reading your post. But..other than the fact that I know you and we've talked...and so I know when you're comfortable....I think it was great.

You look fantastic....you sounded like you knew your shit....and I'm not sure if this is going to be a compliment....but you seemed...Older...more wiser....while being sassy and fashionable.

You're great.

Honestly...I'd tell you if you sucked.

Thanks everyone...and yes, Amy, I know, you'd totally tell me if I sucked.

Back to training next weekend!

I don't think you were bad at all, hon. Guarded a bit, not quite comfortable, but give yourself a break. You're talking very seriously about something you're committed to and know a great deal about and are passionate about. Of course its going to be a lot harder to be yourself while doing that than it is mugging and acting silly for the camera. Can't wait to see what comes out of the next training.