So I must confess, I don’t give much credence to awards. The Oscars? I don’t seem to have the mental or emotional depth to understand the movies that seem to win. The Grammy’s? Half the time I’ve never heard of the top winners, probably because I listen to too much Hall & Oates. When M.I.A. busted out her pregnant self in that ladybug get-up at this year’s production, shock and awe quickly set in. Often it seems like awards can be bought for the right price, like it’s part of the advertising budget.
But the annual awards from Campus Activities Magazine is different, becuase it’s strictly determined on popular vote. This year, over 47,000 students and college personnel voted on the best speakers, performers, booking agencies and entertainers. I’ve been nominated before, but this year I won “Best Female Performer.” After hearing the title of the award, I thought about adding juggling to my ass-kicking repertoire. I guess I’ve just never thought of what I do as performing. Hell, I barely think of it as professional speaking. I just think of my job as a goofball women’s self-defense instructor who just so happens to address large crowds for a living. Somehow thinking of my job in this way helped with stage fright in the early days. Clearly the imagine-the-audience-in-their-underwear method didn’t have the desired effect. Really, who came up with that technique? It’s creepy.
It’s a real honor to receive this award, and I wanted to thank all my past clients and people who voted. The fact that a women’s safety & self-defense act was chosen says a lot about how far we have come in bringing the message of girls fighting back into the mainstream. I think Shannon would really dig it. Just as I do each day, I thank her for giving me this mission, and the best is yet to come. Click here to view all the awards online.
And of course, lastly, I’d like to thank the Academy.