March 20, 2018 / askpang / Comments Off on Talking about “The Importance of Rest” at the Happinez Festival
This fall I was at the Happinez Festival in Utrecht, and while there I sat down for an an interview about rest. The edited video is now up, and basically features me talking for eight minutes.
The video was shot in a farmhouse adjacent to the festival, which itself was held in a 19th-century fort and barracks that’s been converted into a conference center. Quite the place for an event devoted to happiness!
We sat for about half an hour, talking about various parts of the book and my argument, and they did a great job of editing it down without making me sound fragmented or incoherent. (Indeed, it turns out that just as in writing, good editing in video makes the difference between sounding like you’re just wandering around, versus getting to the point.)
Between this and the release of the Calm masterclass, it’s quite a week for video!
In September when I was in Europe, I gave a talk at Jabra corporate headquarters, just outside Copenhagen (where I had some excellent food, and saw some cool cats). We shot some video of me talking about deliberate rest, and Jabra has now created a short video from it. (Sorry about the auto-play.)
As a place that makes some outstanding headsets for office use, Jabra is really interested in issues of focus and concentration in business environments, so it turned out to be a great place to talk about deliberate rest and my earlier work on contemplative computing. (I’ll confess I have no fewer than four pair of Jabra headphones– two sets that I’ve used for everyday listening, a pair of their Bluetooth earbuds, and a set of noise-canceling office headphones. They’re all awesome.) And of course they did a great job with the video!
A few months ago I was doing an Al Jazeera show, and during the sound check beforehand one of the other guests described me as “the silver gent.” I suppose I see what he meant. Mentally I don’t feel like i’ve aged in the last twenty years (I feel like fundamentally the same person I was when I was a postdoc, or first married), but I have gotten more silver.
And anyone who meets me on the road is likely to see me wearing some variation of those clothes– the black shirt and black cashmere jacket, and jeans. What can I say; one of my professors extolled the virtues of wearing black on the road, and I still dress that way out of respect for her.
My session on Rest (or as it was called in the program, REST!!!) at DLD17 is now up online. Arianna Huffington and I talk about deliberate rest, multitasking, and more.
Or, to put it another way, Arianna is onstage, and I happen to be there too. Still hard for me to process.
The audio doesn’t sync up perfectly (at least in the 15 times I’ve watched and reloaded it!), but otherwise, hey. It’s cool.
Not to sound too much like a fanboy, but it was fabulous to spend time with her. She’s really nice in person, and was as generous with her time at the conference as she was in her New York Timesreview and Lifehacker shout-out. I met a lot of people who I wouldn’t have otherwise, which is always a good moment at a conference.
And DLD is an extraordinary event. It’s one of the few conferences I’ve been to where I can genuinely say everyone was interesting, and I never felt like I had to disentangle myself from a conversation that felt like it was going nowhere with someone I didn’t want to be around. For someone who has to make a conscious effort at small talk, this is a huge thing, and something I really appreciated about the conference.
Not to mention the fact that Munich is wonderful, and the venue was awesome (despite being a confusing Inception-style combination of three different buildings joined together by a series of catwalks and open spaces designed by M. C. Escher).