TED 2019 Personal Highlights


How I felt at the end of TED 2019

This photo definitely captures what my mind feels like after a week at TED – completely turned upside down and all around, confused, exhilarated, inspired, and in a very heightened emotional state.

What really stuck with me? It’s so challenging to deliver “top picks” but here are MINE.

The opening talk of Carole Cadwalladr, a British investigative journalist who exposed the Cambridge Analytica-Facebook scandal. In her talk she rebuked the heads of Facebook and other tech giants for helping erode democracy. She set a very high bar for authenticity, passion and deep research.

Michael Tubbs, the 28 year old Mayor of the City of Stockton, California used parables and personal stories to underline how common humanity is integral to rebuilding cities like Stockton that have long suffered from structural violence and neglect. I’m not doing justice to his eloquence and impressive record of civic change.

I’m taking Level 4 Improv at the Magnet Theatre, so seeing a brilliant improv performer like Anthony Venezialeon stage was a special treat. He improvised at TED talk to hilarious effect (note: include amygdala and pre-frontal cortex in all TED talks for credibility) and did an ingenious musical ‘rap-up’ of the entire week with the group Freestyle Love Supreme.

And finally, Es Devlin. I was so saturated with emotions after her talk that I had to leave the theatre – a first for me. Her voice, the spectacular images of the designs she has created for stage productions (The Leyman Brothers), musical tours (Beyonce); and the poetry and cadence of her story-telling were breathtaking. My next stop is the Abstract episode about her on Netflix.

An exhilarating week. I’m still processing it all. And I’m grateful that I had the opportunity to be there.







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