Watching Seinfeld and realizing that I would find it difficult to “open with a joke” were I giving a speech. If I got a laugh, I would be too tempted to keep going and to hell with the speech. If I didn’t, I would be too demoralized to continue. My junior high school drama teacher used to get distracted like that at banquets. She would start to give out awards and then launch into 30 minutes of improvisation about how hilarious growing up in Maine was; complete with accents. And the uncomfortable laughter of our parents.