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TEDxTerrytalks 2010 - Tetsuro Shigematsu - The Awesomeness of Your Contradictions

Stick out your thumb. That's the thickness of my press package. If you flip through it, fanning past you would be clippings from all manner of periodicals; from monthly community bulletins, to national newspapers. This is the one thing I do well; getting love from the media.I'm a writer/performer. And garnering coverage is very helpful in getting everything from publicly funded arts grants to international work visas. Nothing establishes credibility quite like a stack of newspaper and magazine profiles.Ever since I was a teenager writing my first play, to making my first feature film, I've never had to send out press releases. I have always had reporters coming to me. I always assumed this was the way it worked, until I noticed fellow artists counting themselves lucky to get a two line blurb from the local arts weekly.Which begs the question; why do some people get noticed and others get ignored? Before returning to school, I worked as a national TV and radio broadcaster for the CBC, and I noticed my colleagues in the newsroom always seemed to be endlessly fascinated with one particular kind of person; walking oxymorons. People who embody contradictions, and whose charisma flows from our inability to reconcile their seemingly paradoxical characteristics.Eminem, white rapper. Tiger Woods, black golfer. Madonna, sex-object feminist. Moby, rock star geek. Jonas Brothers, heart throb virgins. Barack Obama, black president. Terry Fox, crippled marathoner.Everyone possesses paradoxical traits. But we usually try to suppress them out of fear of appearing inconsistent. But rather than obfuscate our contradictions, we should allow them to define us. I'll show you how to instantly identify your dominant characteristic, how to foreground the one hidden trait that belies it, and illustrate how the media sought out my own evolving contradictions throughout the years, and rewarded me for it. (http://terry.ubc.ca/tedxterrytalks)About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations). www.ted.com/tedx
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