ID19 SparkPlug – Geina Horton

As we get close to Ignite Denver #19, we put out the call to our presenters to solicit pre-event blog posts to promote their Spark. With that in mind, we bring you: SparkPlugs!

So the votes are in, and I’m going to be speaking at Ignite Denver #19. I’ve been thinking about what I want to tell the audience for months now. I’ve been listening to TED talks and podcasts, talking aloud to myself in the car, practicing and trying out what I want to say on February 26th. People in the other cars must assume I’m on a speaker phone when they glance over to see me talking in a very animated and dynamic fashion!

In the confines of my mind, however, I keep quietly asking myself “How in the fuck am I going to tell this crazy 30-year career-path story to a couple hundred people in five minutes?”

I wonder: Do I want to inspire them to grow up and be who they want to be? Or remind them to listen to their inner child and never grow up and become who that inner child knows they should be? I’m making myself crazy trying to figure out how to channel my message to the audience. Mostly I’m stressing about the slides at this point though. The FUCKING SLIDES. Oh, and no note cards! The slides have to help me REMEMBER the story that I want to tell. I did not know I couldn’t use note cards during the show!!! Crap. I can do this. I got this. But I hope the audience will be kind when I fuck up.

I tell myself that I will not curse. And, I will not tell you out loud on stage that a professional wrestler Bobby the Brain Henan once called me the “C” word when I messed up on stage…oh, wait, sorry: “in the RING”. I was the first female ring announcer for the WWF in 1984. And even though it was short lived, it makes me think of my life as a series of matches. The kind of matches that I BELIEVED I could win.

You might be wondering “How on earth did she get tied up with this shit?” Well, in 1979 at 19 years old I became a DJ, and when the WWF bandwagon carnival rolled into Denver in 1984, I was a local radio “personality” who was invited by the local concert promoter to don a white tux, get in the ring, and read the stats about each wrestler’s height, weight, etc. I found the WWF repulsive, but I got paid $100 to get in the ring in front of 10,000 people at McNichols Sports Arena and be the MC for this really weird shit.

Geina and Andre in the ring

But that’s just one teeny weeny story from this crazy career path that I’ve chosen.

Now, I need to figure out how to fit the REST of the story into a five minute presentation, with 20 slides and no swearing. I also have to pack for a trip to Hawaii, help my family get my 89 year old Dad checked into a senior center that he doesn’t want to go to, AND prepare my 2014 taxes for my appointment on March 7.

But the IRS can wait. I have a story to tell and I need to start writing.

Come see Geina Horton give her Spark Hulk Hogan Was My Career Counselor” on Thursday, February 26th 2015 at the Oriental Theater in Denver.