Thursday, September 13, 2007

Meeting Minutes for September 10, 2007

Greetings Fellow Toastmasters,

Doris called the meeting of September 10, 2007 to order at 8:00 P.M. after a
period of setup, welcoming, refreshments, and socializing that began an hour
earlier. Jim, a former club president, served as Toastmaster for the
evening, Marlene served as Table Topics Master, Jill served as General
Evaluator, and Anna F. served as Word Master, challenging all of us to use
the word - proclivity - in our presentations. "An inclination or
predisposition toward something, especially a strong inherent inclination
toward something objectional" – is how Merriam Webster defines the noun, and
Anna shared that definition with us, including the date of origin of the
word in 1591.

Marlene posed a variety of questions to the ten participants in the Table
Topics session. Doris was asked: "What's the best thing about your position
in your family" She is a middle sister. Branko was asked: "Who is the
smartest person you know? Jim told us about something he would like to learn
how to do, and Ada, a guest, shared her thoughts about how it feels when she
hears an unfamiliar noise in the night. Her reply in part, - scared, like
doing public speaking. Jill replied to a question about who she would choose
to trade places with, Anna F. commented on learning another language, and
Yilong, a guest and native of China, commented about her preference for
using email rather than regular mail to communicate with friends and family
back home. Janet spoke about a high school mentoring program, and John, a
guest who was asked a question about music, replied in personable terms
about his listening experiences and preferences. He, and several other
responders spoke admirably, but another guest, Linda, who accepted the
challenge to speak about her favorite place to be alone, took Best Table
Topics Speaker honors for the evening. The high point of the session came at
the very end when Marlene, in her poetic closing comments and parting
gestures, said to the audience: "You, and you, and you, were my theme."

The first scheduled speaker on the agenda was Elena, who presented a very
interesting Speech Project #4 (How To Say It) titled: "Disaster at Pompeii"
She opened her presentation with a provocative quote by a German poet about
the perplexing thought of being joyful and mournful at the same time. Her
talk was engaging, full of historical detail, appropriately paced, and she
maintained good eye contact with an audience that was seated in two
different sections of the RIVAA meeting space. She employed visual aids with
appropriate hand gestures, along with great vocal variety. Rena was Speaker
#2 with Speech Project #5 (Your Body Speaks): "My Journey To The Marathon."
Her opening remarks referred to November 4th as a special day for those who
participated in the New York City Marathon, a subject many of us in the
audience could certainly relate to. We were hooked, and she didn't
disappoint us. She provided us with good historical detail about the event,
noted that she trained for 4 months to prepare for the run, and she pointed
out that of the 98,000 people who applied, only 38,000 started the race. Not
only do we admire her competitive spirit, we were mesmerized by her
wonderful presentation. As Speaker #3, Branko completed Speech Project #8
(Getting Comfortable With Visual Aids) titled: "Why I Chose Toastmasters."
Speaking from the heart with strong organizational and presentation skills,
Branko introduced his topic. He got our attention and maintained our
interest by using prepared sheets with details relevant to what he was
speaking about at a particular point. He was well prepared, so his
presentation moved along at a comfortable pace without a hitch, or the "and
ahs" he was made aware of in an earlier evaluation. His mastery of English
is really commendable, and he was disciplined and exuded confidence before
this diverse audience. Anna D, our new President, was Speaker #4. She
presented Speech #4 (with a 2-3 Min Q & A session) from the Advanced Series
(Speaking to Inform) titled: "Facts About How Toastmasters Can Help You
Become A Better Leader." Janet Schoene did her evaluation and noted how she
maintained a comfortable pace, with good eye contact across a split
audience. Anna spoke in English, not her native tongue, and I was impressed
by her poise and confidence during the question and answer session as she
replied to a half dozen questions. Doris evaluated Elena, Malcolm evaluated
Rena, Sue evaluated Branko, and Jill provided an excellent general
evaluation of the meeting itself and the performance of the other
evaluators. Rena was voted Best Speaker and Janet won Best Evaluator honors.
After a report from the Word Master, the Ah Counter, the Timer, and a brief
business session, the meeting was adjourned shortly after 10:15 P.M.
The next regular meeting is on September 24, 2007 8:00 PM at Rivercross
Community Room.

Submitted Respectfully,
Woody Deas, Secretary


Post a Comment

<< Home