Monday, March 22, 2010

Never Grope a Guest Speaker


Lunch during a writers conference is a special time. The authors, speakers, publishers and editors who taught the classes sit down and eat with you. As you enter the lunch room their tables are marked with their name tag. Lots of people rush in to sit by their person of choice- oddly reminiscent of Black Friday at Kohl's.

It's a great opportunity for writers to pitch their book ideas and network with others.

This year I wasn't charging the table for anyone. The creamy garlic penne pasta had my full attention. But, one of my friends somehow got a hold of me and excitedly told me we were all sitting over there, as she pointed to the table off in the distance.

As my friends came into view I saw the only vacant seat was right beside our guest speaker. Not my first choice. Now I'd have to cut my food into much smaller bites. This gifted man has written numerous novels. His work is well-known. He's kind of a big deal in the writing world.

As I sat down I could hear he was already asking everyone about what they were writing. By the time he got to me my mouth was full of cranberry-walnut spinach salad. I turned my face away so as not to shower Mr. Novel Writer with raspberry vinaigrette.

My tongue stumbled over an almond and I misspoke as I shared what I was writing. I chuckled and corrected myself. Being the touchy person I am, (my face still turned away chewing my elephantine mouthful of greens) I reached my left hand out to laugh and kindly touch his shoulder.

This is where the scene goes horribly wrong.


My hand missed his shoulder and landed on his thigh...under the table.


Have you ever had one of those moments? You know - when silently every microscopic molecule in your body is screaming?

Then you know exactly what I'm talking about.

The rest of lunch was a blur. I immediately stood up and did what any middle-aged godly woman would do. I ran to the dessert table and ate a plate of chocolate cheesecake brownies.

Mr. Bigtime Author was kind enough not to shame me. But, he kept his distance after that.


Did I tell you I am going to the Mount Hermon's Christian Writers conference in a few days? Pray for me. I hope to keep my hands to myself.


Originally posted February 2009


19 comments:

Lynn said...

Jo, You crack me up. God bless you at the conference. Want to hear all about it and keep your hands to yourself. *grin*. Hugging you. Lynn

Mari said...

I'm laughing out loud here! I know you learned from this and no "groping" will occur this year!

RefreshMom said...

Thanks for making the rest of us, with our own "embarrassing conference moments" feel better! I'll be there too. And this year I resolve not to just sit across the room from you and other online 'friends,' but to actually come up and say hi!

Lauren said...

oh my goodness!!! I am cracking up over here and thanking God that it wasn't me!! I would definitely go eat a platter of brownies while blushing to my roots!!

Beth in NC said...

LOL!!!! Bless your heart. Try to keep your hand stretched out for a handshake this time. LOL

Runner Mom said...

You are too funny!! Love this! I would have been cracking up right along beside you!!

hugs!
Susan

Keli Gwyn said...

Oops! I hope this Mount Hermon conference isn't quite the touchy feely experience of the one you related. :)

Denise said...

lol, you are so funny.

The Real Me! said...

LOL! Oh my friend, that is hilarious.
Great story! Thanks for sharing.

Hugs
Kim

Karen said...

You are an amazing story teller...thanks for my big laugh for the day....

Andrea said...

Blessings, hugs, and prayers,
andrea

Susan Panzica - EternityCafe said...

So funny! This year you must follow the advice of my kids first grade teacher - "Keep hands, feet and objects to yourself!"

Have an awesome, god-directed time!

Blessings,
Susan

B His Girl said...

How funny! Being a good writer you captured the moment for us. Have fun at the conference. B

Dena E's Blog said...

How positivley hillarious Joanne,, what a great-fun witty discription
girl... And after putting it the way you did,,I will happily add a prayer for you and the upcoming conference~~~You Go Girl!!!
Hugs Dena

Shawn said...

Too funny! You're lucky, though. I'm usually asked to sit at the kids' table at those conferences .... and they're aren't even any kids there!

Susan said...

What a great story!! I definitely feel your pain -- and am working on losing MANY plates of brownies. Thanks for sharing so transparently.

Cheryl Barker said...

Loved this story -- hilarious! Eating those brownies makes you a woman after my own heart :) Hope you're enjoying the conference!

Joanne@ Blessed... said...

Thanks everyone! I promise to keep my hands to myself this time.

But I can't promise to keep the brownies to a minimum. WAY TOO HARD!

Debbie said...

Ohhhhhh - sister, I feel your pain! I can just imagine - and laughed at your "godly woman" response... Thanks for sharing this. Really. Too humanly funny.

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