My wife—and her sister, and their mother—claim to have misophonia, the so-called disorder that makes little noises intolerable.
"First-world problems," says Hellen Keller.
But I've got to say, I really do despise jagoffs who sit in tight quarters at conferences clicking and clacking out notes on their laptops. And as a conference organizer, I have half a mind to ban these impolite percussionists from my events.
I'm all for note-taking, as I believe it helps keep the note-taker's mind from drifting off into sexual fantasies.
I also know it seems hopelessly old-school to scribble notes in a notebook, even though sensible-sounding studies say hand-writing notes is better for retention than typing.
Mr. and Mrs. Tappy-Tap will no doubt protest that they're going to take those notes that they're typing into their computer and put them on some fancy knowledge-wiki somewhere and someone is going to read them and benefit from stunning insights like,
the ancient power of story
management versus leadership
But you know and I know and the poor patsy beside you who is putting up with your pernicious pecking knows that pretty much every pint of knowledge that's soaked up at a conference will be of benefit to the soaker-upper and no one else. And further more, that your attempts, back at the office, to pass on the knowledge you took in will be about as well received as burping up the beer. Politely, at best.
"How was the conference?" may be the least sincerely curious question in the human communication. If we could glean anything significant or interesting out of conferences from hearing about them, we would send our assistants to conferences and let them put up with Click and Clack, the Tap-It Brothers.
Reader, all of the above is an effort to motivate someone to prove me wrong: Show us something you produced from a conference that another person might actually wish to consume over a cup of coffee in the fading wake of the event. An event like the PSA World Conference last week in Washington.