How to convince your friends you saw a sasquatch, (assuming you actually did).

My thoughts on Ignite SLC

Recently, I spoke at an event called Ignite. I really did! It was awesome.  It really was!

Rather than try to explain what this is, I’ll let the organizer’s explain.

From their web site:

“Enlighten us, but make it quick” is the slogan of Ignite–a community event celebrating the passion and creativity of geek culture, sponsored by O’Reilly Media. Ignite events showcase a series of speakers who, in rapid succession, give five-minute talks on whatever ignites their passion.

The format is half the fun with Ignite–speakers are allowed 20 slides that auto-forward every 15 seconds, whether they’re ready or not. Organized by volunteers in the local community and presented free of charge to their communities, Ignite talks range from “Starting your own role playing game” to “The impending death of Internet Explorer” to “Zombie Defense for n00bs”.

My topic was “How to convince your friends that you’ve seen a sasquatch, (assuming that you actually did).”  I spoke about the importance of doing this right, so as to make your friends believe you, as opposed to thinking you’re insane.

Here are a few pics of me speaking:

Now, I do have experience speaking in front of people.  A lot of it. I often pretend to be a West Jordan mom speaking loudly about paying for her and her kids to see a spray-painted donkey that was supposed to be a zebra in Riverton on quiet late night flights. I laugh loudly and just a little late every time a football hits the groin in great comedies like Paul Blart: Mall Cop and Night at the Museum 2. I also love to yell “Utah Jazz undefeated! Two time world champs!” while crossing the street in a crowd with my friend Will on our way into the Energy Solutions Arena.

My formal public speaking background is a specialized forum known as policy debate.  Policy debate is two person high school or college teams competing head to head for the win in approximately 70 minute debates at large tournaments held around the country over the course of three days.  These debates are highly intense and competitive, and focus much more on the arguments presented than the style of delivery traditional public speaking.

Here is an example of a college debate round:

As you can see, this is not toastmasters.  So going into Ignite I was NERVOUS.  Anyway, the speech went really well.  I kept pace with my slides for the most part, and got a few laughs in the process.

Now, my thoughts on the activity.

First, it was a lot of fun.  I could seriously do stuff like that all the time.  The energy in the crowd was amazing, and I feel like they really learned a lot from my speech 🙂

Keeping pace with the slides is the biggest challenge.  I would have liked to flow better with the timing as opposed to fighting it, but at least I didn’t get way behind and have to catch up, or get way ahead and have dead air.  Timing is one of the things that this forum would help me with most.

Next time, I will spend a lot more time with the creative process, and a little more time rehearsing.  Having lots of good quality content but not a script is best.  You need to have more to say than you will actually say, since you will have to adjust for applause and laughter.  I think it’s best to have lists of examples to illustrate points, and you can either add or subtract from that list depending on how much time you actually have for that slide.

For example, one of my slides was “Why would I lie? I would lose everthing, my family, my credibility, my sasquatch tracking business, my sasquatch paraphanelia and curio emporium, and my line of sasquatch hair care and hygiene products.”  That took me about 15 seconds to say in rehearsal, but by the time I got there I was a little behind and I had to rush the hair care and hygiene products line and really should have just deleted it to catch up.

Practice with either a stationary microphone prop, or with one in your hand.  I was moving around a lot and gesturing with both hands in rehearsal.  Having to keep the microphone up to my mouth threw me off.

Physically engage your slides.  For example, find key moments to point at something for emphasis, turn and act surprised at something shocking such as a closeup picture of a sasquatch for comedic effect, waive a slide forward as if you’re actually controlling it, or point at a slide with both hands and do a sweeping gesture toward the crowd as if to physically deliver the content.  Physically connecting to your slides will help you build timing, appear more in control, and create a seamless delivery rather than two presentations happening at once.

If you go last as I did, or later in the lineup, try to draw a couple of references to earlier speeches.  If there was a moment earlier in the night that made a strong impression on the crowd, (good or bad), reference that moment in order to amplify it’s effect.  For example, I thought of drawing a parallel between zombies and sasquatches, or using the word dude, with a pause, based on 3 different earlier presentations.  This will take savvy since you’ll have to deviate from the original plan, but if you’re using lists like mentioned above, you should be able to incorporate this reference with a substitution. The downside to this strategy is that it may make you stumble since it will be unrehearsed, but if it’s timed well and subtle it could have a big payoff.

Show some awareness that you’re at Ignite.  Make reference to the fact that you’re doing a speech, at Ignite.  Have an awareness of what that means.  What does it mean?  First of all, 300+ people are listening to what you have to say, and there will be an impact on them.  If you’re doing a speech with a political message, what would you like them to do with that message?  What is your purpose in being there? Is that purpose coming through (implicitly or explicitly) in your speech?  What are the limitations to the forum and how are you interacting with the inherent boundaries?  Are you stretching/bending them or remaining strictly within them?  What does Ignite have to do with your topic, if anything?  What role is the audience playing in your presentation?  Are they more of an active participant or passive observers?  Answering these questions as part of your preparation will make your experience at Ignite deeper and richer.

Finally, prepare not only for your speech, but for you whole Ignite experience.  Remember, there is a lot of time to mingle.  Do you want to meet people while you’re there? Are you going to network?  Who do you want to invite?  What is your approach to networking while you’re there?  I’m not saying you have to have a sales pitch or anything, but a basic strategy for meeting and greeting will help you have a better time.

Thank you Ignite good night!


New meal: munch

How to make money selling food: make your portions incrementally larger and larger, empty all nutritional content, and then supplement with diuretic and addictive additives made in countries with no regulatory oversight. Adding meals to the day is the next logical step. We now have breakfast, brunch, lunch, and supper. Let’s add munch.

The basics

Munch is to be eaten between supper and breakfast, particularly after binge drinking and/or smoking pot. Many already partake of this meal, usually at all night eateries like Denny’s or Dee’s, but remain torn between ordering breakfast and supper. Munch should be acknowledged as an independent, stand alone meal and munch food should be perfected by munch chefs and served at munch houses across the nation. I would like to hear munch house servers utter the phrases, “sorry sir, but we’re only serving munch right now. Would you like to see our munch menu or hear about our munch specials?”

The word

The word munch derives from the combination of midnight and lunch. Midnight lunch, for the peak hour it is served and the other meal it resembles most closely. Also derivative of the pot cultural term “munchies.” Munch is Onomatopoeia for the sound made when the meal is eaten, and it describes its consumption in manner and style.

The food

Munch food is generally good for the food industry since it consists of large quantities of cheaply made, addictive food. Classic examples include chicken fingers, mozzarella sticks, chicken wings, and nachos. All munch food comes with a variety of fatty dipping sauces and even the “healthy” choices should be “lightly” fried. In addition, there should be specific munch-only food. I’m no munch chef, but I’m thinking cheddar crackers and all four flavors of easy cheese for starters, a full jar of crunchy peanut butter with spoon as entree, finished with a jar of creamy peanut butter with chocolate sauce or marshmallow cream for dessert. I also want to see a variety of whole animals ranch battered, then deep fried, then re-battered, then country fried, then buttermilk battered, then butter fried, then beer battered, then Crisco fried, then corn battered, then trans fat fried, then served with dipping sauces brought out in shot glasses lined up on an old ski, or a canoe paddle.

The munch house

Munch houses should always be steep roofed A-frame type buildings with cedar shingles and large neon signs salvaged from 70’s bowling alleys out front. They should be dimly lit with ash trays (even in no smoking states) at each table. They should be on the forefront of restaurant gimmickry such as getting text based facebook order status updates on your blackberry, voice command prompts from On Star or Garmin to hold your table in the case of a collision or rollover en route, and Ron Paul/Super Dell Schanze in 2012 midnight tableside voter registration drives. The staff should be called “munchkins” and the servers should take deep breaths of helium before asking if more fry sauce or ranch is needed. They should always be carpeted, wall to wall with marine salvage carpet. The walls should be faux wood paneling with Polaroids of famous bass fisherman and 70’s basketball players in short shorts who have dined there. Menus and vinyl booths should be coffee stained and sticky. Ski ball and wack-a-mole should be standard, but the ski balls will often be missing and the mole heads broken or worn to a nub since they will be carnival and/or Chuck E. Cheese salvage. Juke boxes will hold many titles and artists, but will only play Winona Judd since they will be truck stop salvage. A munch house should feel like home.

Munch culture

Munch can be eaten in either club clothes or sweats, but never business attire. The drunkest person should always pick up the tab, whether voluntarily or through trickery. There is no flirting or hooking up at munch. Munch is about being gross and disgusting, time to let down the bar personae and cut loose the belt buckles. Munchers will often have makeup smears from dance floor sweat, drink stains, flat hair, dejected expressions, squinty eyes and a general reversal of the hours of getting ready to go out earlier. Sometimes you go home with the one you want, sometimes you gather up the girls (or boys) and go to munch.

Let’s do munch

In the beginning, there were three meals a day. As civilization has become more egalitarian, things like golf, marital infidelity, and brunch are no longer just for the rich. There is already a rich body of lore touting munch as the key to avoiding hangovers. I believe that with some slick advertising, a P.R. campaign highlighting starving Africans who can’t afford munch, and heavy pressure from the munch lobby, munch will be taught as the most important meal of the weekend to children in elementary school nutrition classes nationwide. For my readers, get in on this now. You may be seeing a lil pepper’s munch house in your neighborhood if you don’t.

Letter to the editor park record

I am writing to suggest that Park City rethink the way that it represents the miners that used to live and work in this town.  Please correct me if I am wrong, but we have whitewashed our mining history.  The statue in Miner’s Park is that of a stout Caucasian and not a person of Chinese heritage.  The majority of the dangerous work carried out in substandard conditions actually fell upon the backs of Chinese immigrants and the statue at Miner’s Park is not representative of this history.  I believe that in order to have a healthy relationship with our past we must depict it as accurately as possible and not seek to recreate it in our own image. 

The statue reminds me of the sandy blonde haired and blue eyed Jesus that so many in our western society feel more “comfortable” relating to.  If Jesus was represented as a middle easterner we would have fewer problems in the world.  If the miners that built the wealth and prosperity that we currently benefit from were portrayed accurately it may help us to become a more inclusive, tolerant, and diverse community. 

I would like to suggest to the leaders of our community that we honor our past by erecting statues and artwork that depict how things really were, even if they were not always noble and dignified. 

Mining conditions were notoriously inhumane at the turn of the century and often immigrants with no voice in the electoral process were brought in and exploited to line the pockets of their Caucasian employers.  I do think that we should be proud of our mining history but I also think we have come a long way from the labor conditions of the past and that we could learn even more if we made a choice to confront rather than obscure its legacy. 


Kellen McAffee
Old Town

Craigslist ad: Adult diaper changer needed

Diaper changer needed for depends party (Temple View Motel)

Date: 2009-06-17, 10:57PM MDT


We are having a depends party in downtown Salt Lake at the Temple View Motel and need a diaper changer to assist us in our changing room.

We will all be wearing depends brand adult diapers and nothing else. We drink mocktails and eat burritos all night and never have to go to the bathroom! So liberating.

What we need: someone who will wear a sexy Mary Poppins outfit and run the changing room for the night. Your duties will include application of desitin, ointments, powders, and putting on new diapers whenever one of our sexy guests makes a doo-doo or a pee-pee. You will need to be very tidy and professional in manner and appearance. Diaper experience is required. Some spanking and burping required. Matronly only. Discretion is a must since Kurt Bestor and Chris Buttars will be in attendance.

Please reply with cover letter and resume and you will be considered for an interview.

Thanks and I hope to hear from you soon.

  • Location: Temple View Motel
  • it’s NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
  • Compensation: Depends

Letter to the editor Park Record

This is a response to a 10 year old boys vigilante movement to end speeding in Park City by posting home made slow down signs around his neighborhood and asking others to do the same.

Dear editor,

I would like to offer a word of caution to young Cameron Gallagher: don’t become a fascist.  In a police state, all citizens police each other and ultimately internalize the law and unthinkingly police themselves.  In a free society, citizens use reason and persuasion to make choices that they believe will benefit society at large.  People should think for themselves and not use the law to do their thinking for them.  For a free person, “because it’s the law” is never a sufficient response.

Why do we follow the speed limit?  Is it because the sign tells us how fast to drive and nothing more?   Or is it because we want kids to feel safe on their bikes and on foot?  If it is the former, we will only obey when we think we might get caught and constantly push the limits.  If it is the latter, a more rational approach to driving is the result.  Speed limits are arbitrary, road conditions are not.

Side note: The police department issued 2733 tickets in 2008.  If my last ticket of $85.00 is a good measure, the city collected at least $232,305.  Use this money for sidewalks, every penny.  For government rates this would probably buy 10 feet of sidewalk.  Hire me and my friends and we’ll put sidewalks along every road in Park City with this money.   Why isn’t Park City the world leader in bike paths?

I trust that Cameron’s movement is a response to a failure in the way that laws are obeyed and enforced in our society.  He’s not saying drive slow all the time, he’s saying drive appropriately.  I trust that he’s not doing the police department’s dirty work; he’s doing his neighborhood’s bidding.  To P.C. drivers: use Cameron’s inspiration to become an empowered driver.  Use reason and don’t blindly follow speed limit signs only when someone is looking. 

Cameron, keep up the good work and don’t become a fascist. 

Kellen McAffee
Old Town

Just out lookin

Just out lookin – 31 (Down town )

Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]
Date: 2009-03-18, 9:38PM MDT

Hey guys I’m Tami lol just bored here lol seein what’s out there. I live downtown in Salt Lake lol. I like bees games, the arcade, the jazz, roller skating, ecsetera. I hate the cold lol.

I’ve never done anything like this before, just bored I guess. Not really lookin for long term just have some fun!!! My friends tell me I’m cute but I’m not always sure, I’d like someone to tell me I am! Know what I mean? I am looking for a date, I guess lol, or maybe some dinner or whatever. I don’t know anything really, I just need a man to hold me, i guess.

Anyway, if you want to chat I’m always online so send me an email i guess. Don’t talk politics though,lol I love snowmobiling and other stuff.

I would prefer a smoker, no weed just camels lol . Sorry marbro guys:(

Also, I like puppies, so ya, bonus points lol! Oh yeah, I have one wierd thing, I like anal, definitely. And older men.

Ok well, bye for now guys lol!


183 replies to this one and the winner is:

“Rilly bored hear”

so hey came across your add,can definiately relate to your boredom .im presently staying in farmington,i like to do things that i never get to,i smoke camels,and like weird things.i like puppies but dont have any sorry. its saturday bored as usual thinkin about tryin luck in wendover, you go there ?i’d do better at winning black eyes chasin the wrong wemen than gamblin some what do you think. p.s. im 41 look good i think? dont have anyone to tell me that either.any interest???dave

New Word: Ragical



1. produced as if by extreme, esp. as regards change from accepted or traditional forms of magic.  radically magical: The unicorn fetus with monkey wings flying across the sky at sunset was ragical.
2. mysteriously enchanting. extremely romantic:  On a ragical moonlit night I watched LDS devotionals on the BYU channel while on LSD with a double amputee tranny dwarf  in a tiny wheelchair.
3. produced by a magician with radical political views: The anarchy rainbow over the capital building was ragical.
4. exceedingly cool as to take on an other worldly or super natural quality: Blago’s hair helmet is totally ragical.
5. extremely ironic to the point of magic.  The cheerleader used the word tragical to describe low school spirit, which ragically made her appear smarter at the pep rally.
6. a magician who holds or follows strong convictions or extreme principles.
7. an extremist who does magic.  a magical extremist.
8. a magician who advocates fundamental political, economic, and social reforms by direct and often uncompromising methods: A disguised ragical teleported past security and cast a spell on John Mcain to make him blink wildly and smile like an angry corpse during the  presidential debate.
9. produced with ragical powers. A penis ragically appeared on George Bush’s face during the state of the union.  
10. produced by a tragic leprechaun, specifically Lucky’s brother, Gloomy.  tragic + magic + radical: The leftover milk after a bowl of Unlucky Charms is ragically delicious. 

2009 theonlykellen’s blog; Magic + Radical.