I’ve been wanting to do something like this for a while now. Ever since the TEDx talks I did last year, I kept imagining what it would be like to get up in front of an audience to talk about a specific topic, but have no idea what was on the PowerPoint. With that in mind, working with Famous Jim Williams, we designed the first prototype for a PUFFtalk, which he performed at an Open Mic night at Wroclaw’s Nietota back on January 13th. The gist is this, you go up on stage, the audience tells you what you will be talking about and once you start you must incorporate the random PowerPoint into your talk.

Here is how Famous Jim Williams did it (I created the PowerPoint, which he did not see beforehand):

My favorite slide is the one that had the biggest laugh (Places where I’ve pooped). And what I love about the video is how I can hear my buddy Derrek choking from laughter.

There are a lot of things that need to be ironed out, but I’ve figured out how to make this work:

  1. Future versions will be shorter (8-10 slides).
  2. You will have one minute maximum between slides.
  3. It might work better with the speaker playing a specific character (“I’m an evolutionary biologist and today I’ll be talking about…”)
  4. Better camera placement next time.

Anyway, this is something I’ve been trying to cook up for a while. And while the first one isn’t perfect, I’m excited to see where we can take it next time.


About Christian A. Dumais

Christian A. Dumais is an American writer, humorist and public speaker living in Wrocław, Poland. He has published fiction, journalism, and academic articles in several magazines and journals such as GUD, Shock Totem and Ha!Art. His first collection of short stories, Empty Rooms Lonely Countries, was published in 2009. He also created, edited, and contributed to Cover Stories, a euphictional anthology of 100 stories inspired by songs, which was published in 2010. His most recent book is SMASHED: The Life and Tweets of Drunk Hulk.

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