This wasn’t supposed to be an episode of BSTV. For once I had prepared a script and was intent on sticking to it.
Waiting nervously in the wings in the minutes leading up to walking on stage at the TEDxUmeå event I comforted myself with the knowledge that if I should freeze or stray from the path of my speech about innovation in beer I could always get back on track thanks to the ‘way-points’ I had created that were going to be displayed for my eyes only on a small monitor at the front of the stage.
Deep breath. “This is a TED Talk Darren”, I thought to myself. “Presidents, captains of industry and world leaders have given TED Talks. They are important and recorded and archived for everyone forever to see so whatever you do don’t screw this up”.
Walking on stage I found myself face-to-face with an audience of over 100 creative, go-getting, trend-setting, successful and sparkly people who had spent the entire day being inspired.
As the last act on the programme I knew they were probably getting to the point where their minds were overloaded with creative buzz words and were more likely wondering if there was fresh coffee being served in the foyer outside and what to wear to the swanky dinner that same evening than listening to a guy about beer.
Smiles, a quick joke about the mess left by the guy who had chopped a piece of wood to the beat of rock music before me and I was away.
All I need now were my speech notes, my way-points to cling on to, so I pressed the remote button in my sweaty hand to bring them up on the monitor below me.
Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click.
Suddenly something flashed up on the screen.
“Oh crap. Oh crap, crap crap!”
And then, somehow, my BSTV training kicked in and I started talking. It wasn’t my entire polished speech, laced with facts and attention-grabbing statements.
But it was something, and most importantly of all it was something about beer.