What’s the future of this here site and why are you doing this?

This is what happens when baseball gets rained out in Tacoma. The whole city blows up.
This is what happens when baseball gets rained out in Tacoma. The whole city blows up.

You may ask yourself, why a story night? Maybe you don’t, but I’m telling you anyway.

Several years ago I wrote a short essay called “Jane.” It sat on my blog for years and years, just sitting there doing nothing. I thought it was a good story, but I didn’t really have any way to get it told elsewhere.
Continue reading What’s the future of this here site and why are you doing this?

All about story night 10/2/2014

Let’s talk about Story Night in Manette on Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014.

First, what you probably already know because you have seen the flyer is that it will be at 7:30 p.m. at the Manette Saloon at 2113 E 11th St,  in Bremerton.

You probably also know that your story must be true, can be no longer than five minutes and should be within the theme, “Schooled.”

One other rule: NO NOTES!!! You must tell your story freefalling without a net. Don’t worry, you will make mistakes, probably. We all will.

Do you want to do well at your talk? There will be PRIZES for the best stories, you know. I thought this online collection of hints had good ideas. It’s aimed more at people making workplace presentations, so you can ignore the part about data and anything related to slideshows. You won’t have the ability to do a PowerPoint!

In a few days I’ll post examples of stories I thought were well done. They might be longer than 10 minutes, but it should give you something to aim for.

Even if you don’t tell a story that night, there might be something there for you besides a night of entertainment. There will be at least one prize for a member of the audience. You will find out about that when you get there.

If you would like to tell a story or would like more information, send an email to info@spillyourgutsguts.com or leave a comment here.

By the way, the story night will help launch a new podcast called “Spill Your Guts’ Guts.” Each episode will be posted here.

We look forward to hearing your story!

What frightens you more? Public speaking or huge dogs?



This dog was a pup in this picture still and even smaller when my wife first started watching him. Should you be afraid of him? Probably only of getting knocked over. He’s a sweetheart but like all big dogs I’ve ever known he doesn’t realize how large he is.

Let’s start with a joke. Well, technically this isn’t starting, because I gave you one paragraph about Newman. But let’s not quibble. The joke, from Jerry Seinfeld:

“According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.”

This site doesn’t dismiss the funniness of Seinfeld’s joke, but says that perception is not quite accurate. Because, really, would people rather die than speak in public? No. It’s just that speaking in public is something that is more likely to happen to you than death, which for most of us only happens once. So you don’t go around fearing that someone is going to kill you. Instead you’re afraid some mugger is going to come up to you on the street and force you to give an Amway presentation.

Here’s the thing; the fear of public speaking is something we can all overcome, mostly by doing it. Years ago I decided that I wanted to be good at public speaking, so I took nearly every opportunity I could to practice speaking in front of an audience. For years I had this issue when I first started, that for the first 30 seconds I was so nervous I had trouble breathing. Once I got through that, I was fine. So I figured out a way to make it through that brief period until I was breathing normally again, and then I would continue on with my speech. Now I don’t have that 30 seconds of oxygen deprivation anymore. 

So if you like the idea of telling your story, but you’re afraid your nervousness is something that paralyzes you , take comfort in knowing that you can overcome this. I have only ever seen one person die from giving a speech, so the odds of it happening to you are pretty slim.