I was thinking this morning about stories from my life, small experiences that changed me and have stuck with me which, from the outside, might not seem that important in the grand scheme of things. For some reason, something that happened to me in junior high school popped into my mind. Oddly, I can’t figure out why, because I don’t think it taught me anything that I refer to daily. It was my eighth grade year, and I was in science class. We were studying Centrifugal force. Mr. Sagnella, my science teacher, was my favorite teacher. He asked for someone to come to the front of the class to help him with the demonstration. I volunteered. I went up to the front of the class, and he handed me a bucket full of water. To demonstrate the power of the force, I was to spin the bucket around. No water would come out of the bucket due to the centrifugal force. No water that is, until the bucket attempted to occupy the same space at the same time as the 100 gallon fishtank that was directly behind me. The tank shattered, the bucket went flying, and I stood at the center where the force of the water from the fishtank and the remaining water in the bucket met. Needless to say, I was “that kid who shattered the fishtank” for several months. In my professional life, I don’t think I’ve ever given a presentation or demo that has gone worse. I’ll have to keep that in mind the next time I get up to speak in public.
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