Public Speaking 101

“Pack your bags!” the speaker who refers to himself in the third person as “Senior Leadership” (uppercase in original), exclaimed.

Doesn’t this sound good.

Were the assembled group of Junior Followers who comprised the audience to each receive free round trip airline tickets to Vegas?

Might ONE of the Junior Followers receive a free airline ticket? One-way?

How about a half-priced bus ticket to, say, Camden, New Jersey?

No, no and no.

Instead of a plane, train or a bus ticket, the Junior Followers received a free luggage ID tag holder.

Whoopee!

Well, for cryin’ in the sink!

Is there some school offering a major in Stupid Stuff? Can one earn a degree in Uppity Insults?

Is there no speechmaker’s checklist that begins with: What ARE you thinking?

The excitement described above took place as part of the launch to a major Begging Campaign.

The kind that seeks to raise hundreds of millions of dollars. And all for a very good cause, one that virtually all of us would applaud and perhaps many of us would likely give money toward in support.

Intentions, doubtless, were good. Delivery and concept choice was considerably short of that criterion.

The speaker sought to get the Great Unwashed as excited as the people responsible (accountable) for creating, implementing and running the Begging Campaign. That is, the people who would gladly take credit for its success and eagerly shift blame to others and the Great Unknown should the campaign fail to meet expectations.

Get people’s hopes up. And then, after lulling them into a state of narcotized bliss, unceremoniously dash the bliss instilled by the blissmaker. Just in case anyone needed a reminder of his or her station.

“Are you pumped!” the rhetorician concluded excitedly in statement rather than question form.

Yeah. We’re pumped.