Monday, October 30, 2017

My voice sounds like that?!

I rode the scooter
  Way back in the summer, someone suggested I give a talk at the Congrès QuébecOiseaux 2017. I shrugged and filled out the application, which, to my shock, was accepted.
  For those whose French is rustier than mine, I first gave a little breakdown on what it's like to live and bird in South Korea, followed by an explanation of the work Birds Korea does, and some of the conservation challenges, both large and small, that are faced by Korean birds and their habitats. I ended off with the tragi-comic tale of the time I was fed an endangered bird in the guise of fried chicken, and ended off with a little "It's gloomy but there's still a bit of time and hope left" spiel. 
  I fudged on a question at the end, when asked about the percentage of birds in Korea that are migratory - I answered 75%, when that number is closer to 87%. I had actually re-read that exact figure in the Birds Korea Status of Birds the night before, but the lack of sleep and an overload of French clouded my brain and made that fact unretrievable at the moment. Close enough though, eh.
  The rest of the day was a pleasant one, as Dan and I got to check out speeches in all four rooms (conservation, observation, photography, and research), and it was great to network with other bird-minded folks throughout the day. It was a tightly-run ship, all in all.
  Tim Edelsten and Robin Newlin were awesome for letting me use images of grim Korean habitat destruction and the bird species it impacts, and a thank you as well to Nial Moores for letting me use data/graphs/photos produced by Birds Korea. I couldn't have written the speech without Catherine Dion's expert French help, and wouldn't have made it to Victoriaville is Dan hadn't schlepped me there in his trusty Prius.
  But yeah, there's no way my voice is so nasal and insipid in real life. Must have been a problem with the mic. Heh, and I just noticed a lovely tick where I'm pawing at my face throughout. In my defence, it was pretty damn nerve-wracking giving a speech like this in a language that my brain clings onto with its fingernails.

Watch the speech here (I swear there were more than two people there...):

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