10 March 2018

What happened when I got picked to speak at a Moth StorySLAM

Every year I put together a list of resolutions for the New Year. Two lists, actually. One that I share publicly, and one that I keep for myself. An exclusive list if you will.

One of the items on my super secret list this year was to tell a story at a Moth StorySLAM. Little did I know it would happen at the very first Moth event I ever attended, two short weeks into 2018.

I'm a huge fan of The Moth podcast. I wait for it to come out every week in order to officially start my story worthy week. Seattle has a taping at least once a month, and I've always wanted to go. With date night looming and nothing else on the calendar, my boyfriend snagged last-minute, sold-out tickets to a show on Friday, January 19.

At StorySLAMs, 10ish names of to-be storytellers are picked at random out of a hat. Each person gets five minutes to tell a true story. A panel of judges rates each one, judging on the contestant's ability to stick to the chosen theme and tell a story with a conflict and resolution. A winner is crowned at the end of the night. The Moth website outlines these rules, and encourages would-be contestants to practice and practice and practice. Let's just say that's not how I did it. 

On the way to the show, Jordan and I chatted about the theme: guests. A few beverages in, I was sad to have no related stories and sighed, "I bet everyone in the audience wants to get up and tell a story. I wish I had one." Jordan reassured me that no, I am weird, not everyone wants to tell a story. Then he reminded me I do have a story about guests - one rather memorable guest the first summer we operated the Airbnb. With J's encouragement, we put my name in the hat and sat down in the audience. 

The host warmed up the crowd, explained the rules, introduced the judges, and called name number #1. After the applause, #1 drew the name for #2. Well wouldn't you know it that #3 called the name Kristina. I was really going to do this!!

You have approximately two minutes to think about your choices while the judging is announced before you speak. I can honestly barely remember the time I stood on stage - it went by in such a blur. It's not polished and it's not perfect, but I had fun and I feel incredibly humbled to have gotten 3rd place with little to no preparation. 

Without further ado, here's my five seconds of fame at a Seattle StorySLAM:

I *swear* the laughter and applause sounded much louder in the room ;-) Thanks for watching!

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