The pieces were all falling into place. The speech was written (and re-written. and re-written again). The Orbitar glove cables had a freshly sharpied black coat. Jordan, the Max MSP musical guru, had arrived from Texas to help flesh out the TED performance. We were experimenting. We were rehearsing. We were staring at computer screens, a lot. We were…Orbitar-ing.
And as glamorous as that all sounds, we were also apparently running out of time. And thus, on the last night of Jordan’s stay, we were pulling an all nighter. And by we, I mean Jordan. Around 3am I started to fade, and I curled up inside a psychedelic mayan pyramid aglow with LEDs. See pre-3am crash picture of me confidently Orbitar-ing in front of said pyramid:
I woke up some hours later and popped out of my pyramid nest in a groggy haze. Jordan motioned me over to the laptop and I thought oh, I seem to be just in time to check out some good progress! “I’m really sorry” he said, pointing to the screen. My tired eyes blinked a few times and I noticed the display had crashed. “Oh, just restart it” I said. Jordan didn’t move. Or respond. And after what felt like an extremely long moment of silent, I realized restarting wasn’t going to do shit.
There is probably a reason most poi spinning is done in a field amongst grass and trees and other poi spinners who are used to getting hit by flying objects. Because every now and then, a poi head flies loose from its chain, and crashes into the nearest entity. This time, that entity happened to be my laptop, and also the thing which the TED performance was supposed to run off of. With only a few hours before Jordan’s flight, we attempted, with low morale and tired eyes, to scrounge up another screen and the appropriate cables to hook it up to my laptop, which of course were impossible to find because that’s how cables always work. Our precious final hours were soon gone, and it was time for Jordan to fly away. With all of the tremendous work we had done over the past few days hiding in the shadows of the laptop fiasco, we said goodbye with a “well, whacha gonna do” kind of look. And then, what I did, was immediately walk into an apple store and drop a bunch of money I didn’t have on a new laptop I had done no research on whatsoever. The TED talk must go on.