Sunday, March 04, 2007

Be the Big Dog

I've received some good feedback on how to be the big dog. I also spoke with the boyfriend about my frustration with being a little dog, and it was interesting how he misunderstood my use of the phrase "big dog." He understood it as "top dog" and that the conversation was really a power struggle. I explained about my "yipping" and he correctly pointed out that I have a tendancy to overexplain, to chat up my feedback or my questions. He said, "I try to say things in as few words as possible."

Or, as David Byrne puts it,

You start a conversation you can't even finish it.
You're talkin' a lot, but you're not sayin' anything.
When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed.
Say something once, why say it again?

I tried this out at a seminar the other day. I raised my hand, and in as low, slow, and calm voice as I could muster (given the inflammatory topic), I asked my question. The speaker replied with "Oh that's a very good question, but I'll get to that later." He never did answer my question. Sigh.

I asked a later question, again using the big dog recipe. He asked for clarification, and I explained in big dog terms.

All on a day when I didn't have Dottie Dog hair.


shannon said...

I meant to give you a suggestion as well, but the flu is an evil beast.

Anyway, better now and:

Have a theme song. Before going into any lecture, interview, meeting with people who make you want to poke out your eyes, run this song through your head. As you are walking across campus on your way to any of these things. Make it a powerful song. Something that moves you.

I can't say that I came up with the idea, but I love it!

Oh and about the inviting people to speak. Why not just do it and see what the doubters do when you get the YES reply?

FemaleCSGradStudent said...

Good advice. I think Disco may be good for this.

Regarding invitations. It boils down to money. The department is expected to pay the airfare of the visitor. If I just randomnly invite someone, likely they ain't gonna pay up.

Jenny F. Scientist said...