Meeting # 1945 was like a flashback to the Jerry Seinfeld show. It was a meeting about NOTHING.
Our Toastmaster Chris insisted that this was not a reflection of his having wakened up at 3:30 this morning with the panicked realization that he had forgotten to create a them. It was simply indicative of the idea of nothing which , not surprisingly, gets very little (one is tempted to say “No” ) representation in our world.
Chris quickly moved on to introduce our Grammarian Sarah who gave us “invigorate” as the Word of the Day.
Next Beata made a Table Topics out of nothing by putting a variety of words in an envelope and asking us to pick three and weave those three words into a story. Almost everyone participated including our guest but the group felt that best example of weaving the three words he chose into a story was Wayne. He was presented with the Wise Owl Award.
Chris then introduced our guest, Shahnaz, (or had her introduce herself) and commended her on having taken part in Table Topics.
Announcements included a call for people who have put off renewing their membership to become Toastmasters again by getting their renewal to Beata, a reminder that Chris will be on of the contestants at the District Conference International Speech Contest that will take place at the Hilton Hotel in Mississauga Ontario and that you can register for just the contest. What was not mentioned is that tickets to the contest will not be sold at the door so register ahead if you would like to come. (Chris would appreciate the support)
After a brief break, Chris called Matt DiMarco to the front of the room to present project 4 from the Interpersonal Communications manual, a speech titled The Inner Game. Matt was referencing a book by Timothy Galloway, The Inner Game of Tennis which told of a management technique involving coaching by asking questions. Matt then demonstrated this method with the help of Sarah in a role play representing a sales manager speaking to one of his sales people who’s work was slumping. Both Matt and Sarah gave us great insights into this method of coaching.
Next Bud was invited to the front of the room for project 6 from the Competent Communicator manual (Vocal Variety) doing a speech titled “Let’s Talk About My Problem” in which Bud encouraged the audience to focus on their goals instead of the obstacles to achieving those goals (our problems).
Our Evaluators were Sean for Table Topics, David for matt’s speech and Rizwan for Bud’s.
Everyone seemed in agreement that Sean was up to his normal standard giving encouraging and useful insights into their speaking style. David praised Matt’s ideas and the dramatization of those ideas while encouraging him so increase the volume. Rizwan pointed out that Bud entertained but could have cranked up the examples of vocal variety even more.
Grammarian Sarah noted that Invigorate was used sufficiently but not as much as some other words in the past.
Wayne gave all three of our evaluators encouragement and awarded the Rock Award to Sean for the sheer range of his ideas. Ah Counter, Fraser pointed out that the filler words were largely absent in the first part of the meeting but came to the fore in the latter part.
At the conclusion of the meeting, it was suggested that everyone check on Easyspeak for contact information of their Mentees and then call their mentee to encourage them to renew since only 14 of the members we had prior to March 30th have renewed so far.
The meeting concluded with everyone agreeing that we learned valuable skills and insights.