Source : Google+ John Baez
It’s hard to give good talks. Matilde Marcolli is running a course on this. She has a tarot deck of characters who will disrupt your talk, and advice how to handle them ! The Emperor thinks some field of research is his private property : only his work is important. "The Emperor will likely attack you on priority issues, because that is what it is all about, showing that he did it all and that your work is, at best, irrelevant. Try to defuse the confrontational mode, by giving open praise to his work in response to his objection, without conceding anything on your own contribution."
In her course,
"We are going to organize our class sessions in the following way : the speakers prepare their talks and aim at delivering a standard 50 minutes talk, either as a blackboard or as a slides talk. The speaker can choose to play against at most 5 penalties, which are the cards Emperor, Hierophant, Chariot, Fool, Magician, that are distributed to people in the audience. The people playing one of the penalties will have to create some disruption in the talk, according to the character they are representing. Another person gets the Justice card and plays the Moderator."
For details, see :