Saturday, March 31, 2007

Portland Story Theater Wraps

Portland Story Theater is wrapping up its 2006-07 season. *sniff* It's going to be a long wait until the 2007-08 season commences. September? October? I so look forward to the shows. I'm especially enjoying Lawrence Howard's contributions, because although they aren't exactly a serial, there are recurring characters, so each story evokes memories of a previous story. I really enjoy the continuity; also, the slow revelation of history and connections. Lovely and compelling.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Michael Hall Delivers In Portland

Michael Hall was in town last weekend to debut his new seminar, Unleashed! The Ultimate Self-Actualization Workshop.

Chalk it up to journalistic prejudice, but I seldom trust anything with an exclamation point in the copy. Yes, I use it myself, because it works. But exclamation points always seem a little shrill to me. So does the word ultimate. That probably comes from my writing teacher telling me to get rid of those goddamn adverbs and adjectives and look for some decent nouns and verbs, instead. And my dislike of nominalizations (self-actualization) comes from both NLP and NVC. Nominalizations take a perfectly good verb and freeze it into a vague, static illusion of a noun. Ick.

Despite my disappointment with his workshop titles (Accessing Personal Genius didn't go down in my book of unforgettable titles, either), Hall is an engaging, warm, enthusiastic and well-organized presenter, and I have found his material extremely useful. Once you get in the door, the time flies by, and the processes are quite elegant -- simple, effective, flexible, creative, and applicable to a variety of different challenges. He calls his work Neurosemantics, developed from NLP. I wish I could get more people to attend his workshops, but it's hard to make a case for them when the titles are so off-putting. Sigh.