In Xanadu Did Kubla Khan a Stately PowerPoint Decree.
BY MIKE LACHER
[Originally published April 15, 2011.]
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately PowerPoint decree:
For VP of Logistics, Stan
And key stakeholders of the plan
For scaling in Q3.
So ninety slides so media-rich
With animations on every switch.
And here were slides rife with sinuous clip art
Where blossomed many a stick figure with a key;
And here a line, pie, scatter, and bar chart,
Enfolding watermarked stock photography.
But oh! that massive romantic flowchart which raked
Down multiple slides athwart notes of automation!
A savage place! as convoluted and opaque
As e’er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By a mid-level manager wailing for guidance on best-practices for escalation!
And from this flowchart, with ceaseless sound effects blasting,
As if the typewriter noises were everlasting,
Mighty WordArt momently was star-wiped;
And in faux-3D metallic letters was typed
Huge statements of “scale” and “ROI”
And colorful encouragements to “reach for the sky!”
And ‘mid these dynamic calls-to-action
Came a Family Circus cartoon with relevant caption.
Five questions marks with a blinds-in animation
Representing the questions the audience surely had
Then reached the answer to make them glad
That what they need is team-based innovation
And ’mid this slide came to Kubla’s attention
Ancestral voices prophesying higher rates of client retention!
The shadow of the PowerPoint slides
Floated across the conference call
Where was heard the muffled asides
From Denver and St. Paul
It was a miracle of device,
A PowerPoint with graphics so nice!
A damsel with a laser pointer
In a vision once I saw:
It was a Senior Logistics Strategist,
And with her pointer she never missed,
Highlighting key takeaways.
Could I revive within me
Her slick presentation,
To such a deep delight ’twould win me
That with slides and presenter notations,
I would build that PowerPoint in air,
That sunny deck! Those slides so fine!
And all who heard should see him there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His swirling text, his Aeron chair!
Snap your laptop at its joint,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on honey-dew hath fed,
And drunk the milk of PowerPoint.
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