Webinar Disaster

I should be taking advantage of the last few minutes of Benjamin’s nap by working. I am quite behind in my pacing plan for my curriculum development work and trying to squeeze in a minimum of 5 hours a day, including weekends! But instead of working, I will instead recap the past few hours of chaos around here. I just spoke to John on the phone and he ordered me to do something to relax. And so here I am. Writing has always been therapeutic to me.

Chaos, you ask?  A few minutes ago I finished giving a 30 minute presentation on my curriculum in an online webinar. It was a minor disaster. Unfortunately, the disaster was carefully recorded and archived to a website for those who could not attend the webinar. (And I suppose for all those other randoms on the Interwebs who are into health science curriculum or just have way to much time on their hands.) …Do not ask me to share the link with you. I will not. …And do not try to google it. I doubt you would find it.

To look on the bright side, as I always do, it really didn’t turn out that badly. Oh wait…yes it did.

I prepared all morning for a Benjamin Disaster to occur during my presentation. Picture this: Screaming baby in the background while I present live to an audience of people in Illinois. And the ridiculousness is recorded to preserve the moment for all history to come. That would just be awesome and so, so professional!

So I had brainstormed at least 159 ways lined up to prevent this from happening.

The ideal plan may be obvious:  Childcare.   Well, Benjamin used to go to daycare on Tuesdays while I worked (so the last webinar I gave I had no baby to contend with, and it went great!), but since every germ known to mankind ravaged our bodies over the course of the winter, we decided the cost-benefit of keeping him in part-time daycare was not worth it. Without friends or family in the city and with our babysitter in school during the day, I couldn’t really come up with any options.

Fast forward to this morning, when I tried to plan for all contingencies:

Plan A: Pray he naps–after a huge mega-bottle to keep his belly full. (Mega-bottle prepped: Check!)

Plan B: Pray that if he wakes up during my presentation he can cry it out in his crib (most naps are only 45 minutes these days so I figured this was likely). The fear here was that he’d start pulling up and leaning over the crib. PS. he hasn’t yet but has come close, so we will be lowering the level on that thing TONIGHT!. (Video monitor on: Check!)

Plan C: Pray that no one will care if I ask to be excused for 60 seconds to rescue him from near disaster in the crib, and then pray he would quietly sit through Baby Einstein on nearly silent volume for 30 minutes straight. Questionable… (Baby Einstein: set up and ready to hit play. Check!)

Plan D: Pray that if he will not watch TV, he can make room in his belly for another large bottle and cut up toast–although lately he has discovered a high pitched scream that he likes to practice between bites of any food.  (Toast cut up, 2nd mega-bottle prepped: Check!)

Fast forward to post-webinar blog update:  After keeping the poor nugget up for four hours after his morning nap (so that his afternoon nap would be timed as close as possible to the start of the webinar), he has been sleeping for 2.5 hours now and counting. Longest. Nap. Ever. (Go figure!)

So why was it a disaster then?

Rewind to the webinar:

Plot Twist!  The disaster I was least prepared for happened:  TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES! To sum things up: My connection to the webinar freezes seconds before the presenter preceding me finishes. I emergency text John at work to figure out how to log into his computer. I set up both computers. I apologize profusely to everyone for the delay. And then I present for 5+ minutes to dead-air. (I thought they could hear me but later realized they could not). By the time all the glitches were worked out, I was so frazzled that I don’t think a single sentence of my presentation made sense. And as icing on the craptastic performance cake, I handled the questions at the end terribly.

Okay, I probably exaggerate…it may not have been that bad, but that’s how it felt!

Here is the double-computer emergency station where the disastrous webinar was broadcasted:

photo (52)


Entropy: 1, Me: 0.

ps. For my non-science readers: In physics, the word entropy refers to the amount of “disorder” of a system.




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