Meeting Recap: Dec. 12, 2013 (Tall Tales)

posted Dec 16, 2013, 4:09 AM by Advanced Public Speakers Toastmasters Club   [ updated Oct 15, 2014, 11:46 AM ]

Dear APS Members and Guests,

Truth or Fiction? Fact or Tall Tale? Those were the questions explored at the APS “Tall Tales” themed meeting this week. Toastmaster of the DayTodd McKinney suggested that the first Thanksgiving was certainly no Tall Tale. This uniquely American holiday is a perfect time to give thanks to God for abundance, for each other, and for Toastmasters. It is also the only day of the year when it is not impolite to tell people to go stuff themselves. Will the real Santa Clause please stand up! If Santa Clause really is a fable, then who is supplying all of the gifts? It turns out; the holiday season is the perfect time for everyone to channel their inner Santa. “Fable” was the Word of the Day, gifted by Word Master Jacqueline McIntyre

Guest Santas included Claire Lo, Ben Van-Rooy, Zak Niazi, Luna Zhao with Tim O’Donnell serving as Timer.

With backpack and climbing gear at the ready, Derek Chen told us of his difficult, yet successful attempt to climb a great mountain in China. “The Sky is Your Limit” was Derek’s message, as he brought his audience and his focus back down to earth. Speech Evaluator Eloise Johnny liked Derek’s message but suggested it could have been offered with even more creativity.

In her “HPL Vision Statement,” Pam Burke spoke about attempting a six mile run, while having to overcome the negative thoughts that might keep most of us from completing that goal. Pam’s HPL Project is to build her own blog website to share and discuss ideas for achieving goals and dreams. Harry Aneziris praised the project and the story Pam used to illustrate it, but he would have also liked to hear more about actual HPL details such as composition of the guidance committee.

Neerja Purang suggested we should emulate the Walking Palm plant, and move “From the Shade to the Sunshine.” Neerja described how friends and fellow Toastmasters can form a support network that can help see us through even the darkest of times. In describing her own journey to the sunshine, Neerja made reference to Scarlett O’Hara from the book (and film) “Gone with the Wind.” At one moment of crisis Neerja had to proclaim “As God is my witness, I will never be powerless again.” I praised Neerja’s suspenseful, story-in-progress opening, and the powerful call to action. I also suggested better linkage between the two stories, and crystalizing the message so it was identical both times it was heard.

“Afghanistan Human Development Report” by Laurent Nicourt was the fact finding project from the Speaking to Inform manual. Explaining the complexities of the Afghanistan situation to financial stakeholders was Laurent’s hypothetical scenario. Brian Robinson complemented Laurent’s politically appropriate manner, appearance, and ability to field questions, but he wanted to hear a better exposition of the speech purpose.

Table Topics Master Gouri Seetharam – who earlier had been presented with her Triple Crown prize and DTM Medal – gave everyone a chance to tell some Tall Tales. District Table Topics Champion Brian Robinson set the premise, with a tale about meeting the woman of his dreams on the subway. In succession Georgia Jones, Zak Niazi, Claire Lo, Eloise Johnny, Ben Van-Rooy, Tim O’Donnell and Harry Aneziris each picked up the thread, taking the tale to taller heights each time.

Grammarian Sal Oppedisano and Timer Tim O’Donnell each gave concise, detailed reports, while General Evaluator Georgia Jones gave meaningful feedback to each participant. Georgia also suggested that speech evaluators dig deeper for more extensive feedback, and that the many ribbons on the APS banner be better organized.

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Todd McKinney
VP Education, Advanced Public Speakers- ~ ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~ - ~

Todd McKinney
VP Education, Advanced Public Speakers