I’ve come to realize recently that only two things truly freak me out. They are 1) the big hairy muppets with wide eyes that appear to be cut directly from satan’s body hair, and 2) live interviews.
I’ve been a minister/preacher/teacher/public speaker for 16 years now. But those things are typically done by monologue. I can prepare my notes, speak my peace (or is it “speak my piece?”), and then shut up. When I teach I always encourage dialogue, but I’m still in control of the conversation. Live interviews scare the snotties out of me for multiple reasons:
1) I’m not in control, and I’m a control freak
2) I have no clue what might be asked, so I can’t overly prepare my answers
3) I’m not in control, and I’m a control freak
4) When it’s live, I can’t take back anything I’ve said
5) I’m not in control, and I’m a control freak
There’s an entire chapter in my book about how often I stick my foot in my mouth. I was raised in a home of 4 boys, and no girls. It was the kind of setting where anything goes. My high school social group lived by the motto “if it’s funny, say it.” These childhood influences have led me to many highly embarrassing moments that have left me picking toe jam out of my teeth.
Thankfully over the years I’ve begun to develop a sarcasm filter. But filters have to be renewed every so often. Every time I replace the air filter for my furnace I see ungodly things and wonder how we breathe at all, then I wonder if our children should be taken from us because I’m a horrible parent who lets them breathe air filtered through something that I wouldn’t let the dog sit on (if we had one). Of course if we did, I’m sure I’d forget to feed him and he’d die an untimely death while breathing air filtered through a 9 year old, dust-mite-covered square-o-muck.
And sometimes my sarcasm filter gets just as mucky. So the sarcasm doesn’t always get filtered as it should.
This is why live interviews scare the muppet out of me.
So, I had my first live one this week. Thankfully, my sarcasm filter was fresh, new, and in full effect. My heart was beating out of my chest as I held the phone to my ear listening to the commercials, waiting for the interview to begin. I thought you’d get a little prep time for these things, but you don’t. They call, ask you how to pronounce your name, and you’re off to the races. But the interviewer, Bob Dutko, made me feel comfortable, and as soon as I opened my mouth my nerves calmed.
Apparently I’m more comfortable with talking than I care to admit.
I just booked three more live interviews for next month (one is even a video by skype) so stay tuned to hear if my sarcasm filter continues to function properly. If it doesn’t, this might be a train wreck waiting to happen. We pray God will let the sarcasm filter continue to function for Darren much like the bush continued to burn for Moses.
If you’d like to hear the interview, you can below. My publisher sent me a whole page of rules about such interviews, and one of them stated that I’m supposed to match the tone of the interviewer. For that reason, I didn’t get to be all that funny, but it felt pretty good.
Although, I always fear that people who read my stuff and then meet me will say, “He’s way funnier on paper,” and that’s probably true. It seems the sarcasm filter works on spoken words, but not on written words.