July 1st Meeting: Back to the Future
After several years of meeting else where, we are coming back to our old home – Rocky Hill Library for the new year.
Jim convened the meeting at 7:33 pm.
Toastmaster Rosemary introduced Karen as wordmaster. The word was affranchise, verb meaning set free. John was joke master.
Jim gave the first speech of the new year, "Fun and Growth", #5 from the Professional Speaker advanced manual. Jim encouraged members to follow the TI program, and to try new things in toastmasters.
Eddie did Successful Club Series module "Finding New Members", focusing on focusing on guests.
Anne led table topics, citing quotations about freedom and independence, asking respondents for their thoughts. Guest Thalia overcame her nervousness to participate.
Evaluator Susan gave Jim an "A" for his speech, but suggested he could have been more passionate.
Club members agreed with Yizhi’s idea of switching meeting to second and fourth Fridays beginning August. We hope this will help us recruit Princeton and other clubs members as duals.
Jim adjourned the meeting at 8:50 pm. Eddie agreed to return to clean the white board.
Anne, Harry, Thaine, Jim, Eddie, John and guests, Frank and Thalia went to the Santa Fe grill to celebrate the beginning of yet another successful Toastmaster year.
July 15th meeting: OFFFICER INSTALLATION
Karen bravely stepped out of her comfort zone not once but twice at the meeting! First, she led the group off with the Pledge of
Allegiance, and later delivered a story with a punch as the jokemaster.
With Jim leading the way as Toastmaster, the meeting also had the twist of two seasoned speakers returning to earlier speaking requirements.
Eddie gave an Icebreaker to start a new CTM. As usual, he had
everyone laughing--this time as he recounted his days as a mischief maker growing up, and finally realizing he had to assume a role as a "regular nice guy" once he got to college. Rosemary, too, gave a CTM speech, saying that this would give her the opportunity to do more stories. Doing CTM number two, she persuaded the audience to think more about "The Power of Myth," and embedded into her speech the classic story of Pandora. As usual, Rosemary's gestures gave a clear and vivid picture of every element of the precious tale.
Harry touched on serious topics as Toastmaster, asking members to address issues related to terrorism, recent London events, and others. Thaine, Susan M., and two guests who had come from towns over an hour away were among the speakers.
A special highlight was the installation of officers, as led by District Lieutenant Governor Leonie Infantry. Those taking an oath to honor their office included Jim as President, Susan M. as VP of Education, Rosemary as Secretary, Thaine as Treasurer, and Karen as Sargeant at Arms. Leonie also gave us some useful and constructive criticisms --on physically positioning the meeting, providing an agenda, having roles in place, and others.
July 29th Meeting: The Bonus meeting of The Month
After Jim started the meeting, Toastmaster Michele introduced Thalia as word master. The word of the day is “Nascent”, an adj. for coming into existence, emerging. It means “to be born” in Latin. A very meaningful word to learn!
Jim gave a technical speech that’s surprisingly interesting. It’s about the make and usage of carbon nano tubes. The magical 62,000 miles long carbon nano tube is planned to be made by April 12th, 2018 as an elevator to the space. How about changing our meeting location to the space 13 years from now? I’d love to take that amazing elevator ride. How about you?
Eddie gave his speech with the emphasis on having an appropriate outline and transition to make his point clear. That goal was certainly achieved. Eddie recounted the history of rise and decline of union and analyzed the reason behind the change. He concluded his speech with helpful suggestions: Take advantage of choices; advocate for that change you’d like to see in society; honor the previous generations that were unionized and have faith in your future prosperity & retirement.
The theme for Table topics master Karen’s questions was “Conversation starters from the pros”. It focused on improving our skills to strike a conversation with a totally stranger. Although Karen got the clever idea from on line dating tips, the strategies are useful in all kinds of social situations that we encounter in our daily life.
During the table topics practice, Thalia told Yizhi that she reminded her of Sandra Bullock and got Yizhi’s response of wanting to be Barbara Walter. Follow the instruction of “looking at someone and find something on them that you can connect to”, Sue Shaffer told Talia that she liked her dress because she have exactly the same one. Eddie picked Michelle out of the audience to ask her about her job in Cook College. Michelle carried on conversation with Eddie by counting her enjoyment and concern. Thaine asked Karen how she had enjoyed the new meeting place, how long she had been with the club and the steered his way into asking Karen to give her icebreaker. Good try Thaine and it actually worked – see next newsletter for Karen’s Ice Breaker report!
Evaluation session was interesting because Eddie and Jim evaluated each other’s speech. Eddie pointed out that Jim was not only articulate in his speech but also make audience feel smarter at the end. Eddie suggested Jim to improve on meeting the objective of making people adapting to the topic. Jim praised Eddie’s speech as informative, timely and interesting with a catching opening. As usual, Eddie had sufficient eye contact with his fellow toastmasters, kept good gestures, and used his notes appropriately. Jim concluded his evaluation by suggesting Eddie to tighten his speech organization and put some personal touch to it.
A very fruitful meeting. We certainly took the advantage of the bonus.
Club Officer profile
This June Rosemary reached her goal of early retirement. Congratulations!
During her careers as a high school math teacher she had also been an employment counselor for the state of NC and an Administrative Assistant at ETS.
We know what a talented story teller Rosemary is from her many speeches at club meetings. Next year, when Rosemary will only work part time, she plans to be a storyteller, volunteer at the nature center, write children's books, and make independent films.
Rosemary loves Toastmasters because it provides the opportunity for people to grow and improve from wherever they are. She has watched people start out so hesitant and blossom into confident speakers. Some of those people have moved on to other activities, but that's fine. The skills they learned go with them. Whenever she sees someone else improve, then she knows it's possible for her, too.
Planning for the future -- Rosemary would like to see a workshop on making Table Topics a positive experience. We could collect ideas and discuss what has encouraged people to participate and what makes it more traumatic.
A residence of East Windsor, Rosemary also would like to prepare a written "script" for the toastmaster to have as a starting point. She wrote one for herself by watching other people. Some people are so good about including explanations and welcoming newcomers. She thinks we could all benefit from incorporating those ideas.
Rosemary also thinks it would be nice to have more informal social events outside of meetings.
Most unusual: In the seventies Rosemary was part of the back-to-the -land movement. She lived on an old farm and raised geese and goats. Then she moved to a computer-controlled solar heated house.
She has heard many memorable speeches. Two that spring to her mind are Karen Mt.'s where she said her son comes "from her heart, not her belly." And Susan M.'s when she described almost being killed while taking a bath in some Eastern European country.