Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Star Struck

The 4th iBlog Summit was the very first “big” bloggers event that I attended (I’m excluding the Theater Talk by Floy Quinto which I attended because while it’s open to all, the topic was for a particular interest and thus was for a limited number of participants). I normally don’t go to those events because: [1] I never knew about them before; [2] I only know a few bloggers and they also don’t go to those kinds of events; and [3] I am not really into hobnobbing with strangers. But I wanted to attend this particular event primarily for the following speakers (in order of appearance): Brian Gorell, Coy Caballes and Manuel L. Quezon III.

Brian sent a pre-taped talk, shot by a brook in his farm in Australia. The sound of running water kept competing with his voice. Brian’s unfortunate camera set-up cropped the top of his head throughout the clip. Mosquitoes attacking his legs and arms provided some distraction and levity to the proceedings. But since no one could ask him questions (a scheduled live hook-up with him fizzled out), a possibly intriguing Q-&-A session never pushed through.

I am a fan of Coy’s vlogs, so I wanted to see his and Aileen Apolo’s presentation on podcasting and vlogging. They produced three videos that elicited a good amount of audience reaction (much laughter in Aileen’s examples of podcasts and in Coy’s Chaplin-esque countdown). And both were quite engaging to watch onstage, especially during the Q-&-A portion.

Early on during the summit I was talking to AJ of and we observed how good bloggers may not necessarily make for good presenters. Which is why I found very refreshing Manuel L. Quezon III’s talk. He just stood center stage and talked for several minutes. But his talk was one of the most engaging and impactful that day. It really helps when one is passionate and knowledgeable about a topic; the enthusiasm comes across loud and clear and adds to the engagement. (That’s why Juned Sonido’s presentation on photoblogging was also engaging—he used a lot of visuals, onscreen in Powerpoint and onstage when he brought out his various cameras one by one like a magician pulling off a trick.)

That evening I joined the others for the after-summit party hosted by in Katips. I started recording a podcast during the party. I got to talk to AJ, Tenchu, Coy and Jeff of Teknostik when they opened the bar, so I set aside my recorder for a while.

I was busy drinking beer and talking to Tenchu when Juned tapped me on the shoulder to introduce me to someone. I looked up—gasp! It was Manuel L. Quezon III, his hand extended to me! I shook his hand as he said, “Hey, I read your blog.”

Good lord, so that’s what it’s like to be really star-struck. I couldn’t think of what to say. I think I said thank you to him, but I’m not sure now. Shet! I couldn’t even tell him, “You know, I also read your blog every day—before. But after a while with all of the shenanigans of GMA and ilk blurring into one big mess, I decided to limit my political readings to the daily newspaper headlines and opinion pages. But I still read your column religiously!”

I forgot to stand up properly when I was introduced. Speechless, I couldn’t even look him in the eye. I remember looking around helplessly and thinking, “Good lord, he must think I’m such a snob!” After a few awkward seconds I turned to him and said, “I’m star-struck!” Ugh, how lame.

Thank god he spared me further awkwardness and embarrassment by bidding us all farewell. He had to go somewhere else, Juned said, adding, “Wow, Manuel really lost a lot of weight.” Really? I asked; I never saw him in his heavy state before.

After that, I totally forgot all about the podcast.

So if you’re reading this, let me say that I’ll try reading your blog more often, I’ve linked it here, and yes, you do look quite fit.


John Halcyon von Rothschild said...

uyyy! i think someone has a crush on a Quezon! Hehe!

joelmcvie said...

@JOHN: ANUVASH?! (blushes) Iba ang "crush" sa "starstruck", anoh?! =)

Janette Toral said...

Hi Joel. Thank you for taking time to be part of iBlog4. I agree with you that bloggers do find it a challenge to speak to a peer audience who can easily spot BS when they see one.

I'm hopeful still that iBlog can serve as a venue to show new faces of bloggers who are doing something great out there.

Cheers and hope you can join again next year.

joelmcvie said...

@JANETTE: First of all, thanks for organizing iBlog in the first place. Second, what AJ and I realized is that bloggers may not necessarily be effective public speakers and presenters. Good thing the pacing of the summit was relatively brisk from speaker to speaker. =)

Anonymous said...

ugghh. sorry but can't stand that pontificating mq3.