Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Public Speaking Northwest Encourages Leadership!

 Today our Toastmaster, Jan, added 5 “Goose Truths” to her agenda. Here is one of them: “We need to encourage our leadership. At the same time, let us be careful what we say when we honk from behind.”

Barb, our president, welcomed Jan, Barbara, Jamie, Cindy, Kyle, Ken, Prema, Emery, Cary, Jean, and guest, Sonam, who found us through the website, Meet-Up.

Cindy, our grammarian, provided the word, Sheeple, which is a noun and means “docile people who are easily led.” Many of us used it in a sentence during the meeting.

Jamie, our first speaker, gave his 3rd talk and it was so good. How can you possibly make a training talk about being the timer, ah counter, grammarian, and topics master? Jamie did! He used stories, anecdotes, humor, and examples to explain each role. He coined the Jamie Rule. “That’s when you speak too long.” Today he spoke within our time boundaries, 7 minutes and 14 seconds.

Jamie gave his talk in front of the lectern rather than behind it. His energy and enthusiasm shone bright and kept us engaged.

Barb evaluated Jamie’s presentation with praise for making an otherwise dull topic fun and interesting. Thanks for the fine training, Jamie.

Cary, our second speaker, entitled his talk, “Land of Plenty But Food for Few.” Cary had been inspired by the Discovery Channel. He noted that there are 7 billion people on earth and in another 10 years there will be 8 billion.

“It worries me,” he stated. “What are we going to do?’ He spoke of a tuna shortage and of fishermen catching sharks for their fins while discarding the rest. Even our own Puget Sound is decreasing in its abundance of fish.

Cary lives on a lake in the country where they can stock the lake. City people won’t have it so good.

Cary suggested people use heirloom seeds that can be used again and again. He thought pea patches (community gardens) can help and he hoped people would stock up for emergencies.

Thanks for sharing this important information, Cary. You demonstrated good eye contact and special examples of concern along with solutions for our growing population. Good job!

Prema evaluated Cary’s talk and felt his mention of the Discovery Channel gave extra credibility to his talk. She appreciated his use of gestures, simplicity of speech, and his clarity.

During Table Topics Ken was asked to define “Exit Strategy.” He gave several examples like:
  • Walking casually through the door
  • Being quiet and sitting down if he and his wife have an argument
  • A business man who buys or lies his way out
  • A child who tells one parent that the other parent said he could do something and it wasn’t true
Barbara had to define “Auto-magnetically.” She said in Harry Potter books it is used as Muggle Technology and that it automated magic spells.

Our Blue Ribbon Winners!

Best Speaker ~ Jamie
Best Evaluator ~ Prema
Best Table Topics ~ Tie between Ken and Barbara

News You Can Use

1. Our quota for officer training has been achieved and will count toward next year’s Distinguished Club Program (DCP)  

2. We will have our Annual Club Picnic at Jean’s on Saturday.
3. Our Open House and Club Contest will be on September 11th.
4. ***** Barb shared the President’s Distinguished Club Ribbon for excellence which we achieved this past year. It will attach to our new banner for all to see.

If you'd like to join us for polishing your presentations, developing leadership skills, and making friends, we welcome you.

We meet every Tuesday from noon to 1:00 PM. You'll find us at the Seattle Times Building in Bothell, Washington ~ 19200 120th Avenue NE. Feel free to bring your lunch.

To find out more contact: Emery Jordan at: (206) 235-1356

Respectfully submitted,

Jean Tracy, DTM

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Public Speaking Northwest Promotes Poise under Pressure

Earl Wilson defines “poise: the ability to be ill at ease inconspicuously.” Keep reading to find out how our featured speaker, Juliet, spoke with eloquence and poise even though she gave her second talk.

President Barb welcomed Emery, Yanhong, Prema, Casey, Juliet, Kate, Jean, and guests, Cory and Sky. Then she introduced our Toastmaster, Emery.

Emery chose “All Things Summer” as his theme. He donned his fishing outfit, brought his fishing pole, tools, and homemade flies. Kate, as our grammarian, added to Emery’s theme with her word “splash,” which can mean display, spatter, or spray.

Yanhong explained the timing for Juliet’s talk, the evaluation, and table topics. Yanhong, a mathematics professor, is very good at precision timing. The timing helps us practice our presentations within the minutes provided. This skill helps us when we present at outside events and workshops.

Juliet, our featured speaker, entitled her talk, “Change Happens.” Its objective, to organize her talk with a good beginning, body, and summary, surpassed our expectations.
Juliet reviewed the book, “Who Moved My Cheese?” Her eye contact with the audience spoke to each of us directly. We learned the importance of overcoming our fears, taking risks, and stepping beyond our comfort zones. Juliet spoke about how our thoughts can boost our actions or keep us stuck.

Juliet’s call to action summarized why we must step away from fear if we want to step into a happier life. Juliet spoke eloquently and with poise under pressure since this was only her second talk. Well done, Juliet!

Jean evaluated Juliet’s speech with high praise.

Jean presented a learning segment on preparing the Toastmaster Agenda. She directed us to a ready-made agenda at ‘Scroll down the left-hand side to click on Public Downloads,” she said. “Then click on Open Agenda and there it is!”

Jean pointed out that the toastmaster needs to get  the featured speakers to e-mail back the following information to the toastmaster for the toastmaster’s agenda:

  • Manual Name the speaker will be presenting from
  • Speech title
  • Time needed   
Barb presented table topics with clever questions. Kate and Cory were to stand and speak “off-the-cuff.” 

With no preparation Kate answered the question, “What would your very best temper tantrum look like?” Kate related how she kept cool at the time of her daughter’s car accident even though she was terrified. 

Later when Kate and her husband returned from a prayer meeting, her husband urged her to let out her fear and anger. She reported screaming at the top of her lungs. Kate said she felt better after that. Great job, Kate!

Cory, our guest, took the table topic challenge. Without preparation, he was asked to design a new firework and tell us what it would do.

His answer blended with Juliet’s talk. Cory said it would consist of colorful and inspiring ideas popping within our minds. His sparkling vision filled our imaginations with the vastness of outer space and the art of Pablo Picasso. Cory, you wowed us!

Prema evaluated the meeting as our General Evaluator. She told Juliet, Barb, Jean, and, especially Toastmaster Emery, how she appreciated their preparation. She honored both Kate and Cory for their excellent table topic presentations.

Our Blue Ribbon Winners:
Best Evaluator ~ Jean
Best Table Topic Speaker ~ Cory
Juliet went a little over the time allotted even though she gave a super talk.

News You Can Use:
1.     Cory, our guest, will be going to Hong Kong for a period of time before he returns.
2.     Sky, our guest, is an artist. She is thinking of joining and took home a membership form.
3.     Emery invited everyone to come to our annual potluck picnic at Jean’s house on August 25th from 4-7. Members are also encouraged to bring a beverage of their choice.

 Public Speaking Invitation!
If you'd like to join us for polishing your presentations, developing leadership skills, and making friends, we welcome you.

We meet every Tuesday from noon to 1:00 PM. You'll find us at the Seattle Times Building in Bothell, Washington ~ 19200 120th Avenue NE. Feel free to bring your lunch.
To find out more contact: Emery Jordan at: (206) 235-1356

Respectfully submitted,


       Jean Tracy, DTM

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Public Speaking Northwest Makes a Difference!

Public Speaking Northwest Supports the words of John F. Kennedy, “One person can make a difference, and everyone should try.” 

Our toastmaster club makes a difference in the lives of our members through practicing our speaking and leading skills. And today we learned how one member made a difference in the many lives she touched. Stay tuned to find out what Jan Skoog did.

President Barb welcomed Ken, Casey, Emery, Cary, Kyle, Juliet, Kate, Cindy, Barbara, Jamie, Pierce, John, Jean, and guests Leona, who found us on the internet, Bethany, Barb’s daughter-in-law, and Wendy, Jan’s daughter.


Juliet gave us “Benevolence” as our word for today. Many members used it well during the meeting. The ones who didn’t paid 25 cents.

Cary stepped up to the plate and practiced the role of Timer. He described his duties with ease and precision. This was his first time as timer.

Jan, our speaker, gave her 10th speech, entitled “Making a Difference.” Jan is a world traveler and has spent 20 years overseas helping the less fortunate. She taught English so others could rise to higher paying jobs, provided 1,500 ski coats, handmade quilts, computer classes, and medicines. "I didn't do it alone," she said.

Two of the countries where Jan concentrated her efforts were China and Romania. Jan shared her stories about Shao Lee and Shao Jing and how she labeled everything in English for them. They became proficient in English within 6 months. Jan taught cooks how to make hamburgers and chocolate chip cookies at a US Embassy, and brought supplies to a hospital in Romania.

For Jan the smiles of those she helped touched her heart and showed her how she made a difference. “Their smiles were the best pay,” Jan said. “They made a difference in my life too.”

Barb evaluated Jan’s presentation. She praised how Jan drew us in with her stories, confidence, and humor. Barb noted the difference between how nervous Jan seemed when she gave her first speech and how confident Jan is now. Barb also mentioned how Jan made us chuckle when she said, “I felt like a mini Oprah Winfrey.”

Jean led a discussion about our club ballot system. New members learned how to write evaluations for speakers and vote for best speaker, evaluator, and table topics. For evaluations members shared how to offer suggestions for improvements with phrases like, “I suggest…” “In my opinion...” and “To make your talk even more effective…”

Pierce shared the UPS policy of giving 4 positives to one negative. Ken summarized the discussion.

John hosted Table Topics by asking members for the meaning of new words that have been added to the dictionary like bromance, sheeple, and bargainous.

Cindy dramatically gave a humorous but accurate meaning of bromance. It’s a noun and means a close platonic male relationship. She approved of male hugging and playful punching. She said she wasn’t jealous, when her husband engages in such behaviors.

Ken acted out the meaning of sheeple. He flapped his arms, sputtered as if he had feathers in his mouth or was it wool? Our laughter egged him on to keep up his funny antics. We’re still wondering whether he got the meaning correct. Sheeple is a noun and means unquestioning followers (from sheep and people.)

Kyle did a great job explaining the meaning of bargainous through his example. He told of his wife going to garage sales. When she comes home she tells him whether the things she saw were priced correctly or whether they were too expensive. Bargainous is an adjective meaning costing less than expected.

Our Blue Ribbon Winners:

Best Speaker ~ Jan

Best Table Topics ~ Cindy

(Barb gave Jan and her speech so much praise that Barb went overtime with her evaluation and did not qualify for a blue ribbon.)

News We Can Use! 

1. Jan, in completing her 10th speech in our Competent Communication Manual, received a special certificate with our enthusiastic applause. Congratulations, Jan!

2. We will have an open house on September 11th when Pierce chairs our club contests.

  • Cary volunteered to participate with a humorous speech. 
  • Emery volunteered to participate with table topics.  
  • We are open to more contestants so feel free to sign up. 
  • There will be trophies for our winners. 
3. Jean will host our annual summer potluck on the 25th. Please let Jean know that you and your family are coming.


If you'd like to join us for polishing your presentations, developing leadership skills, and making friends, we welcome you.

We meet every Tuesday from noon to 1:00 PM. You'll find us at the Seattle Times Building in Bothell, Washington ~ 19200 120th Avenue NE. Feel free to bring your lunch.

To find out more contact: Emery Jordan at:  (206) 235-1356

Respectfully submitted,


Jean Tracy, DTM

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Public Speaking Northwest Promotes Visual Aids!

Public Speaking Northwest believes the words of C.S. Lewis, “What you see and hear depends a good deal on where you are standing; it also depends on what sort of person you are.

Today, our speaker, Mihaela, chose, as her visual aids, lovely pictures to show us where she stands and who she is. Keep reading to find out more.

Barb, our president, welcomed Ken, Mihaela, Jan, Jamie, Pierce, Cindy, Barb, Cary, Casey, Emery, Yanhong, Jean, and guests Barbara, and Kathy, a visitor from another toastmaster club.

Jamie, our first-time toastmaster of the day, chose the Olympic Games, as our theme. Jamie did a fine job as toastmaster. 

Our word for the day and the coming week is ‘gratitude.’ Our goal is to build this word into our everyday vocabulary when we speak.

Mihaela, today’s speaker, used the pictures on her computer to show us what she meant. Her title, What’s My Name, introduced us to the meaning of her name. Although the communist government in Romania banned religion, it did not ban her parents from naming her and her sister after the 2 greatest archangels, Michael and Gabriel. 

Mihaela means "Who is like God." In one of her pictures Mihaela (Archangel Michael) is dressed like a soldier to protect us from bad spirits. Mihaela shared how her name is pronounced in different languages and countries. Her computer pictures depicted religious scenes of the great archangels in famous paintings from the Greek Orthodox Church.  

 Mihaela invited us to learn about our own names to learn their meaning, honor, joy, value, and even humor. This was Mihaela's second talk. Thank you for such a great presentation, Mihaela.

Emery evaluated Mihaela’s presentation by admiring her stage presence, graphics, speech construction, and execution.

Jean presented Table Topics with a weird twist on the Olympics theme. Instead of it taking place in London, these sports events featured Animal Olympics in Jean's backyard.

Pierce pretended he was the baby crow who participated in the Animal Swim Event. But the crow missed the swimming pool landed in Jean’s hot tub. He couldn’t get out of the101 degree water. Pierce gave voice to the crow’s wildest thoughts and feelings.

Yanhong pretended she was the mother of the baby crow who along with its dad coached and squawked so loudly from the treetops that even the neighbors questioned what was happening at Jean’s house. The poor mother crow was actually squawking, “My poor baby!” The club members joined in making loud squawks of their own.

Casey told about the mischievous squirrels at his friend’s house. Casey is taking care of his Kyle’s pets. It happens that Kyle loves squirrels. Casey doesn’t appreciate when they crash through screens and can hardly wait for Kyle to return.

Cindy pretended she was the beautiful hummingbird who flew in through Jean’s kitchen window. This bird’s Olympic event was to “Find the Exit.” Although it frantically tapped on every window, Cindy assured us that she eventually escaped through an open door.

News We Can Use:

1. Our guest, Barbara joined today! Welcome Barbara!

2. Emery will be Area Governor for Area 33. Congratulations, Emery!  Area 33 will profit from your guidance and expertise!

3. There will be an officer’s meeting next week at 11:00 AM, August 7th.

4. Ken requests the help of someone who prints well to fill out our names on our new Achievement Charts.

5. Ken reminded us that he prints our roster for each Tuesday on Monday night. That means we need to go to our website and fill in the roles we prefer before Monday evening.

The Blue Ribbon Winners

Best Speaker – Mihaela
Best Evaluator – Emery
Best Table Topics – Casey

Congratulations to all!

If you'd like to join us for polishing your presentations, developing leadership skills, and making friends, we welcome you.

We meet every Tuesday from noon to 1:00 PM. You'll find us at the Seattle Times Building in Bothell, Washington ~ 19200 120th Avenue NE. Feel free to bring your lunch.

To find out more contact: Emery Jordan at: (206) 235-1356

Respectfully submitted,

Jean Tracy, DTM