Friday, December 16, 2011

Talking About Speech and Debate With People Who Don't Speak The Language

Speech and debate lingo is fun. It's also confusing. I totally get that. That's why I love talking to people who don't know much about speech and debate. It's fun to explain yourself to people who don't speak our language.  I was talking to a non-CHSADK friend of mine once about various speech categories. She was tying to remember a specific event.  In an attempt at being helpful, I piped up with, "Well, we have Platforms, such as Original Oratory, which is like a normal speech-speech, Persuasive, which is like a speech-speech that's... persuasive. Then there's Expos, where you can have pictures on boards..." I would've continued, but expos was the one she was looking for. Which is really too bad, because extemp would have been fun to describe.

Sometimes, explaining speech and debate to a non-believer reminds me of how important it is to me, and how it's a huge part of my life. So I feel warm and fuzzy inside. Other times, I feel awkward because they don't understand and exceptionally nerdy because I do. A seemingly innocent sentence such as "After breaks, my TP partner and I headed off to check postings and watched HI semis in IE Pattern A" would baffle the minds of ordinary, sane people. But not us. The abbreviations and various would-be unfamiliar terms become so second nature that we sometimes forget there was one a time we didn't know the difference between expos and extemp, between OO and OI, and that breaking is a good thing.

It's good to translate for the Muggles sometimes. It keeps you from becoming a more antisocial geeky homeschooler. Especially if you catch yourself talking in flow-speak. THAT would be confusing.

You're homeschooled, so you understand.

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