Sunday, January 16, 2011

Resolve to use dramatic pauses

On January 3rd Doug Savage posted this hilarious Savage Chickens cartoon. One of my resolutions for this year is to use more dramatic pauses. It’s easy to forget the power of pauses in public speaking. When I get nervous, I instead fill all those spaces with ums, ers, likes, and you knows.

Dramatic pauses also are critical in comedy. Jack Benny, who played a miser, was famous for the following  routine:

“THUG: This is a stickup. Now, come on. Your money or your life.

(long pause)

THUG: (repeating) Look, bud, I said ‘Your money or your life.’

JACK BENNY: I’m thinking it over!”

Monty Python’s Flying Circus has a sketch where an accountant hesitates about explaining what happened to that very last penny.

1 comment:

Kathy McIntosh said...

I LOVE the cartoon. And your comments. It is so hard to remember to pause, particularly when you're afraid, in a conversation, that someone might have the audacity to express his or her thought! At the podium, we have the freedom to pause. Now to practice exercising that freedom.
I am so enjoying your blog and know I'll learn lots from it.