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This is a question Being told off as an adult

When was the last time you were properly told off? You know: treated as an errant child rather than the sophisticated adult you are.

The sort of thing that dredges up an involuntary teenage mumble of "Sorry, Miss" whilst you stare at the ground.

Go on, tell us what childish thing you were up to when you got caught.

Oh, and can we have more than one-line answers this time? Cheers!

(, Thu 20 Sep 2007, 17:18)
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I've often wondered if I'd make a good headmistress.
Back when I was just finishing my undergraduate chemistry degree, we had to give a presentation on the year-long lab project we'd been working on in front of the rest of the department. Being a girly swot, I'd worked pretty hard all year and had done what I thought was a rather nice piece of work. I put together my overheads (pre powerpoint days, which makes me feel older than you can possibly imagine) and prepared well for the day of the presentation.

I'm a fairly confident public speaker and I don't use notes when I talk as they just distract me so I had all the information clear in my head before I got up to talk. I was about third from last in my group and we were running late. So much so that the next group who were due to present in the lecture theatre were hanging round outside the door.

I made my way up to the lectern, put on my first overhead and began to speak. As I relayed my carefully worded introduction, I became aware that the group of students outside the door were getting noisy. I raised my voice slightly and carried on. About three overheads in, the noise had risen to the level where I was having to compete to be heard and the worst of it was I could clearly pick out the dulcet tones of one of our senior professors at the centre of it all. I glanced over to my supervisor, giving him a pained look. He shrugged; he was stuck at the far end of a row and couldn;t get out. the rest of the staff were either oblivious or shifting nervously in their seats.

It eventually got to the point where I couldn't concentrate and, because i had no notes, I was starting to lose track of what I was saying.

"Bollocks to this," my little internal voice said...

I stopped talking. I then stepped down from the platform, walked to the door, took a deep breath and opened it. It took a moment for the gaggle of undergrads outside to notice me but when they did, it didn't take that much longer to register the rage on my face. The prof had his back to me. As the students quieted, he exclaimed "what?", then turned round to be greeted with me standing in the doorway, arms folded. The was a look of confusion on his face then he saw the empty lecturn and the lecture theatre full of open mouthed students. I stepped to one side and gestured for him to come in, which he did.

I made my way silently back to the lecturn and very deliberately waited for him to settle in his seat. I then, icy cold, uttered the words,

"Professor Smith, may I continue?"

He nodded and without missing a beat I finished the talk. The whole incident took less than 30 seconds but I felt like I'd been there for about 2 years. I went back to my seat, shaking like a shitting dog and caught my supervisor with his head in his hands, torn between horror and hysterics.

I excused myself pretty quick smart after the talks were over and managed to avoid Prof Smith for the last two weeks of term.

And I got an A for my project. *beams*

Length? 10 minutes, plus 5 for questions.
(, Fri 21 Sep 2007, 13:53, closed)

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