Music & Morning Musume

Three weeks ago:

  1. I was standing before a group of my newest peers.
  2. I was about to give my first presentation in almost three years.
  3. I was about to give a presentation on Japanese idols.

A week prior to the Great GitHub Summit of 2011, the event at which I made my presentation, I first learned that all the employees had to make a presentation. After reading the email, I was a bit confused. By the time the summit would come around, it would have only been the beginning of my third week. So I started writing about ideas I had for the site. Looking over into Campfire, I had seen some of the others ask about what should be presented on, one of them saying:

I just really want to know more about the people I’m working with.

Or something to that effect.

I took that moment to speak up, and then Eston chimed in:

I want to learn about J-pop.

Or something to that effect.

My eyes widened. Was he serious? Did he know what he was getting everybody into? So, after (borderline) annoyingly asking for confirmation, I turned to Jen with a sizable smile on my face:

I’m going to present on J-pop at the summit.

Or something to that effect. ;)

The First Chance of a Lifetime

My excitement should’ve come as no surprise. :)

For the first time, I’d be able to finally connect the two worlds that were the very definition of mutually exclusive. When the moment finally came, the nervousness came with it, but that was nothing a few readily-available beers couldn’t help fix. ;)

You can follow along–using Ordered List’s awesome new service, SpeakerDeck–and if you’ve heard me talk before my voice will intrude your mind like voices do. I modified the presentation for obvious reasons from its original, but it’s essentially the same one that I gave that day… just without my vocal track.

Thirty minutes later, I felt like I had given the best presentation of my very short presenting career… and it wasn’t even the beer! I’ve always preferred small settings, which is why Washington DC’s Sidebar Workshop was so fun. That freedom, intimacy and intrigue that fuels me that was more than apparent that day in the Russian River Valley. But even more than that–it was a release. Hell, they were interested! The questions were awesome!

Someday I hope to give that presentation again. Not just because I’d be introducing the concept of the Japanese idol to more people, but because the principles that make any fan and any fandom great are ones that can be applied to products like Hello! Ranking and Github. The guys and gals in that room on that fateful Saturday saw that meaning–I hope more will in time.