I first found out about TED over a year ago, when a friend visiting from Europe raved about the organization and its enlightening talks, and encouraged me to download the app on my iPhone so I could watch some of the talks. Well... I didn't check out TED for a long time, although it was always in the back of my mind and I kinda got a sense of what it was about. And no, we're not talking about the Hollywood movie focusing on a certain teddy bear with an attitude...
I was pretty surprised when I was contacted by one of the organizers of TEDxVictoriaHarbour late last year. Apparently I was found to be interesting and worthy enough to be a speaker at a TEDx event. To be honest, I was kinda scratching my head a little, because I had always thought that speakers at these events were people with inspirational messages, who had vision or who were trying to do some good, change the world...etc. I'm just a guy who likes to travel and eat. What inspirational message could I possibly deliver?!
Nevertheless, Yvette reassured me that I was worthy enough, and that I could definitely talk about things that fit within the theme of Destination Asia. After thinking about it a little, I tepidly agreed to be on the speaker panel, still wondering what kind of inspirational message I could come up with without embarrassing myself.
Well, after doing some homework and an inadequate amount of rehearsals, I stood in front of a small crowd of over 100 people on May 18th and delivered my talk, entitled "Will Travel For Food". I spoke mostly about my own experiences of flying around the world in search for a memorable meal; of exploring foreign cultures through food; and whether the food here in Asia merits travelers flying halfway around the world for a taste.
I'm not sure that my message was in any way "inspirational", especially compared with my fellow speakers who spoke about their experiences with NGOs doing charitable work; or creating awareness and promoting sourcing of local, organic produce; or helping people delve deeply into the history to discover the soul of a city... I must confess I came away feeling a little "shallow"... But I was extremely honored to have been part of the crew, and really enjoyed connecting with my fellow speakers.
In any case, I present here the official video of my talk. If you have 16 minutes to spare - which kinda makes it NSFW - I'd be honored if you would listen to me babble a little...
Many thanks to the friends who came and gave me moral support; to the followers of this humble little blog who came to listen to what I have to say; and of course Yvette who was kind enough to invite me to participate in this wonderful event.