WPPI 2011 : Untold Stories

Personal

Well, its Monday. And precisely one week ago today, I was laying prostrate on the hotel bed asking the heaven’s why I agreed to speak at WPPI…I was so nervous I could barely function. JD would ask me a question and I’d shake my head from whatever fog it resided and answer, Yes, your meatball did look delicious at dinner last night! The answer was always the same, regardless of the question. I couldn’t think straight. This was partly because my friend Regis texted me a picture of the MGM Garden Arena (the venue where I was scheduled to speak) on Sunday night. From that moment on, my brain stopped functioning. This was roughly when JD’s meatball arrived to the table during dinner.

The venue was massive and as I sat backstage and waited for the presentation to begin, I saw a picture of Bette Midler. Oh, com’on, how can I compare with the woman who sang WIND BENEATH MY WINGS?! As I approached the stage, I shook like a leaf. A big, brown leaf. I walked to the podium from backstage and I couldn’t see. No, really, the first row of seats were 100 yards away. Now this is where JD jumps in and waves his arms and scrunches his eyebrows because he hates when I exaggerate. Jasmine, he’ll not-so-patiently say, 100 yards is the length of a football field…you mean 100 feet, right? And then I’ll say no. And he’ll start flapping his arms again and I’ll ask him to stop trying to fly.

So maybe it was 100 feet…but it felt like 100 YARDS!!! I couldn’t see, hear, or get a sense of the audience and I felt like I was going to pass out. My voice quivered and my knees shook, but I pushed forward with the presentation. For those of you who sat in the audience and whooped/hollered/amen-ed loud enough for me to hear, thank you. It meant more than you’ll ever know. I hope the evening marked a new beginning and I can’t wait to hear how you change your story. I’m honored to call you friends.

All photos were taken by Regis…a friend I made at the very first WPPI Conference I attended.

This was part of the evening was where I felt more in my element…talking to people and making new friends!

Many, many thanks to those who came out and introduced themselves…at the risk of sounding like an After School Special, I’m a better person because of you. Really.

A special shout out to these two girls…they were the last in line and waited way too long, but they were incredibly awesome!

Happy Monday and a HUUUUUGE thanks to Anton for creating the new Jasmine Star Commercial…it started the presentation better than I could have imagined…
…Oh, and a special thanks to the entire WPPI crew (especially Kate, George, and Arlene) for being incredibly supportive and giving me this opportunity…and PDN’s Lauren Wendel offering a last minute pep talk before I took the stage…and DJ Kishi for mixing up some of my favorite songs to set the mood right (you can find all his mixes here)…
…Lastly, I need to thank JD for listening while I practiced that presentation waaaaaaay too many times, for getting me to the presentation on time, and for being the other half of my brain the entire week in Vegas…