Halloween, that most American of holidays, takes place on October 31, 2011. This article series is a humorous look at some of the scary creatures that lurk in the dark corners of any presentation.
In Part one we examined strategies for vanquishing the Invisible Participant, the Poltergeist, and the Dominator. In this article we look for ways to conquer the Fly, the Bloviator, and the Zombie.
The Fly – This creature seems harmless but can be insidious. Masking itself with exterior acts of extreme friendliness, the fly flutters from participant to participant. It projects an infectious stream of words and an almost-too-ready laugh at anything remotely funny.
The fly is, happily, harmless. It flutters are a call for help. Save a flapping fly by gaining its trust through a comfortable classroom environment. Once the creature relaxes, you can focus it on your instruction. You will then have a ready, if almost too eager, respondent.
The Bloviator – A braggart and self-proclaimed expert on every subject, this creature spews random, irrelevant, and often messy factoids all over the room.
The verbal vomit is difficult to stop. As with many types of abhorrent behavior, the underlying cause of the bragging bloviator’s behavior is insecurity. Smart bloviator tamers use subterfuge. Acknowledge the creature’s presence. Ask the creature for assistance. Thank it for it’s expertise. A relaxed bloviator is a quiet bloviator. An alternative, more amusing strategy, is to pair it up with other bloviators, and then carefully, back away and watch the fun.
The Zombie – This creature, nocturnally natured, rarely comes alive in daylight. Whether tired from a night of rampaging or simply bored with your presentation, the zombie barely opens its eyes. Sometimes it hides in dark room corners. On other occasions it will, unfortunately, park its tired carcass in a front row.
Use a two-pronged strategy to confront a zoned out zombie. First ignore it. It may then sleep quietly. But beware. Some zombies make loud, menacing snoring sounds. If the noise is to spooy, or in a situation where the zombie must focus on your instruction, you have no choice but to wake the creature. Approach it purposely, stand behind it, and speak loudly.
Once you have the zombie’s attention, attract it with enjoyment. When the creature feels that he will miss something of interest, he will fight off the natural tendency to sleep. If you catch a zombie looking through squinted eyes, or opening one eye a crack, you have captured its attention.
In the next article of this series we will offer strategies for conquering the Grim Reaper, the Caustic Clown, and the Ghost Whisperer.