It’s been quite a while since I last reported or delivered a speech in front of the class, especially now that I am in college, a time when oral reporting is seldom or perhaps, never used by students anymore. Acetates have already replaced the good old manila papers and cartolinas as visual aids, and photocopied handouts served as life-savers of a lot of crammers, who were not able to do what they were supposed to; thus getting away with the major task of speaking and elaborating their reports in class.
Just recently, I had to do it again.
After the long two day vacation that I have already
wasted used up, I started the day with an early time-in at school. I rarely come to school on time, but I had to be motivated for the day. The reason behind it? Reporting. Thirty minutes would suffice for the time that I need in preparing my part in the report, which consisted of only less than twenty sentences. I just read every word in the outline and added a little bit of information, and I’m done. Luckily I wasn’t asked a lot of questions. My next task was somewhat easier, as we had more time to prepare and we [our group in the class] were lucky enough to get a rather easy reporting job. I still did the usual thing, and again managed to pull it off.
But personally, I do not like oral reportings, or public speaking in that matter. I am just not fit for speaking in front of many people, for when I speak, I always get nervous. Unfortunately, most of the time it is obvious to everyone, and whatever I do to hide it has no use at all. From the first word that comes out of my mouth, my voice would gradually grumble, reducing its clarity. That is not a good sign of an effective speech, as Comm3 and other language subjects taught me over the years. Aside from that, I do not trust what I say in impromptu speeches, as I always take time to think before saying anything. Even jokes are of no exemption. That is why I choose to write about my thoughts instead of telling it to someone else, especially in front of the masses. I just let the readers be.
As for listening, boredom strikes me whenever I hear someone report, not unless I am deeply interested either in the subject or the speaker. The environment just doesn’t allow me to listen. You know I easily get distracted by anything else, such as a very thrilled seat mate telling a new issue about someone/something, which happens to be more interesting than what is being discussed by the speaker. Though this definitely does not show respect to whoever is speaking, I got used to it over time. I just try to lessen the guilt by pretending to pay attention at times. One last reason is that it is also inevitable when I (or even you) am in the shoes of the speaker.
Well so much for exposing my flaws in speaking (and listening), the day ended with my mouth craving for a glass of water or even a can of soft drink. Though I almost ran out of saliva, fortunately the reports went out fairly smooth. That is enough to compensate my efforts, at least. Tiring it may be, still I was thankful, for I did survive again.