Worcester Speakers @WGTA
Meeting Report Monday 4th November 2019
Meeting Theme: Inspiration not Perspiration
The meeting was opened by "stand in" Sergeant-At-Arms Roger Granville who gave the room some background hisory of the originator of the meeting theme quote "Inspiration not Perspiration".
Roger then handed over to club President Jen Cashmore to get proceedings under way. Jen took a moment to remind all attendees how important the feedback process of Toastmasters was, and how she had enjoyed reading the positive comments on the feedback slips from her speech at the previous meeting.
Jen then duly passed the batton to Toastmaster for the meeting, David Evans who gave a brief outline of the planned events, then asked the evenings reportees to explain their roles to the room.
Next up was Table Topics Master (or Mistress...) Donna Parkinson. Donna very cleverly asked all willing table topics volunteers to explain what happens when things go wrong. First up was Kevin Bennison who had to tell the room how he would cope when he discovered that his superpowers were suddenly lost. Kevin very cleverly turned the subject around to camping and how important it is to know that you can pee closer to the tent when its dark because nobody can see you.... Mike Snoswell then gave the audience his answer of how to deal with a Zombie Apocolypse - They move really slow so sprint around them then chop off their heads because that's the only way to kill them !! Ughh.... Jane Anson then had to tell the room how she would confess to her partner that she had crushed his motobike against the garage wall whilst trying to manover her car. Apparently, he wasn't bothered !! New member Bernadette Styzacker then explained
Worcester Speakers @WGTA
Meeting Report Monday 21st October 2019
Meeting Theme: The mellow colours of Autumn
The evening was opened by Sergeant-At-Arms David Evans asking each member of the audience in turn to give one word that best described Autumn to them.
An exegesis (Grammarian’s Word of the Day) of responses included Leaves, Rustle, Golden, Radiators, & Deciduous amongst the variety of answers.
Club President Jen Cashmore then kicked off the meeting and introduced the Toastmaster for the evening, Roger Granville DTM.
Roger did an excellent job of keeping the meeting on track – except the last part……..
Table Topics Master, Steve Birch DTM gave every “volunteer” a challenge with his choice of topic subjects:
Dave Evans spoke of the loud crash behind him being “rear-ended” by another road user not paying attention.
Mike Snoswell cleverly entwined his beloved hearing dog Alvin into his account of why the police had pulled him over.
Anna Simpson told the audience what she experienced when there was a strange knock at the door and as she opened it…………
Next up was visiting Toastmaster Doug Woods who gave a very interesting description of how his valuable message-in-a-bottle turned out to be an original Coca-Cola bottle, not the message inside it.
President Jen Cashmore was next on stage with her story of what happened when she picked up the wrong suitcase whilst travelling, the decided that she should open it, only to find a live Dodo bird flapping around inside.
Rob Allen’s account of what he found at the top of North Quarry, and how his love of photography enabled him to take lots of scenic pictures.
But it was the full use of the stage with excellent gestures, vocal variety, and humour that gave Best Table Topic award winner Jackie Baker, her prize. Jackie’s visualisation of what she found behind the locked door when she turned the key to be greeted by a torrent of water left her audience very inspired. “Definitely Jackie’s best Table Topic to date” acclaimed the Table Topics Evaluator for the night, visiting Toastmaster Hilary Benoit DTM, whose detailed account of all of the topics speeches including a point for improvement for each one, duly won the veteran member the award of Best Evaluator for the meeting.
Post Table Topics, we were then treated to the traditional three prepared speeches.
First up was gifted speaker Megan Paul. Her epic offering lasting just over 11 minutes was a very cleverly crafted story of David, the kid at school being given “Careers Advice” but not really wanting it. Megan recollected the humorous exchange between teacher and pupil with great skill, but it was the reference to David’s pet dog – a “Jack Shit” (clarified as a cross between a Jack Russell and a Shi tzu) that sent a wave of rapturous laughter around the room.
Anna Simpson had the task of evaluating Megan’s speech, and she did not miss a trick. Her clever recollection of the two-way dialogue between Megan’s two characters was crafted well, as were the details of Megan’s speech technicality including useful points for improvement.
The next speaker to take the stage was Kevin Bennison. As is often the case when the subject of Health & Safety is discussed, there were a few sighs in the room and some rolling of eyes, but the moment Kevin started to relay some real statistics and facts, he had everyone’s attention.
Then came the harrowing recollection of the tragedy of the welsh mining village Aberfan in 1963, where the community school was completely engulfed in a landslide of the coal slag heap that had shadowed the village for years before – an accident waiting to happen, he explained.
Kevin went on to inform his compelled listeners that this disaster had formed the origin of the Health & Safety at Work Act 19xx
Kevin’s truly inspiring, yet hard-hitting speech was more than enough to crown him Best Speaker for the evening.
Mike Snoswell had the unenviable task of evaluating Kevin’s offering, but delivered a detailed report with clear commendations and points for improvement.
The third prepared speech of the evening by President Jen Cashmore was exactly the opposite of that…….. There are few Toastmasters who can accept the challenge of being asked just before the meeting, to stand in and make a speech off the cuff.
Jen’s speech centred itself around “3 milestones of life” and gave her audience a masterclass in how to create a perfectly structured (opening, content, and conclusion) and detailed speech from nothing. Jen used the famous Toastmasters power of 3 to explain to her eager listeners that lives can be focussed around 3 key things that a person is able to reflect upon. Music, books, and locations.
Bringing her speech to a perfect conclusion at 7 minutes and 14 seconds, one could of assumed that Jen would be voted a clear winner, but she was just “pipped to the post” by Kevin Bennison.
Everything was running to time at that point – then stepped up Rob Allen to give his General Evaluation report for the evening. 11 minutes and 57 seconds later, Rob reached his conclusion, having spent the first 2 minutes of his time informing the audience what the role of General Evaluator was all about. Nevertheless, detailed and positive feedback was given to all who participated in the evening, which was more about quality that quantity, with just 12 Toastmasters, and guest Paul Davis in attendance.
Next Meeting – Monday 4th November @7.00pm.