Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Feb. 10th, 2015 Theme: Success

80% of success consists of just showing up. ~~ Woody Allen

Welcome to our 6th meeting of the year and this Blog. Today, we had the pleasure of receiving 6 guests. Jean acted as president since Linda was away at the U.S.-Asia Education Winter Summit Conference.

Amritha was our toastmaster. She told about the ingredients for success. She made the point that success is not a consequence of smartness or luck. Her success acronym:
See your goal;
Understand the obstacles;
Create a positive mental picture;
Clear your mind of self-doubt;
Embrace the challenge;
Stay on track;
Show the world you can do it.

She also recommended a Ted Talk by Richard St. John that offered the secrets of real success.
The GAT(e) team was: Lynne as Grammarian (achieve), Jung as "Ah" Counter, Kimberley as Timer.      
Robert was our first speaker of the afternoon. He completed the 1st project (The Entertaining Speech) from the Advanced Entertaining Speaker Manual in 8:30 minutes. His speech title was "Blogging for Profit, Duty and Fun". As introduced by Amritha, the word blog (originally web log) was defined as an easily updatable, online, interactive, dated diary.

In his speech, Robert described his 3 blog efforts. The one for profit was his Erasable Games blog ( where, during 2007-2008, he produced 84 weekly cartoons and descriptions of many different Sudoku puzzle variations.  His handout showed the cartoon evolution between the first and last blog post. Throughout his talk, he offered several blog quotes that were appropriate to each of the blog efforts he undertook.

His current blog activities include the weekly toastmaster blog update (as meeting secretary) on (which you are now reading) and a Math and Computing blog ( where he writes about accessible math and computing topics (e.g. the constant π (pi) ). 

Naser was his evaluator. Naser explained his utter delight in being able to respond to his wife’s questioning: What happened at the toastmaster meeting? Naser: Please read the toastmaster blog and look at my pictures. He was very grateful for Robert’s consistent attention to detail in describing the meeting. Because Robert used papers in his talk to accurately speak quotes from time to time, he suggested that the papers be put down when not quoting. He also suggested that Robert could increase audience understanding by talking louder.  

Naser won as best evaluator (tie).

Our second speaker, Alice, completed her 6th project (Vocal Variety), from the Competent Communication Manual in 6:40 minutes. The name of her speech was "Hear What You Hear". Alice introduced her talk by quoting (“mimicking”) children about their writings and being interrupted. 

She said that listening is input and speaking is output. She explained that it is very important not to interrupt and/or jump to (erroneous) conclusions. 

We interrupt because:
• We are smart
• We are eager to help
• We are forgetful, so we must (over)talk now.

It is important to patiently listen and be curious, since the other person’s end of the conversation may surprise you. Since we have 2 ears and 1 mouth, we should listen more than we speak. Listening shows love and caring.

Alice was voted best speaker.

Dave was Alice’s evaluator. Dave appreciated Alice’s variation with her speech patterns and her good eye contact with the many members of the audience. He empathized with her as he recalls his wife finishing his sentences for him (and sometimes incorrectly). He liked the excellent points Alice made about listening. He was positively impressed with her dignity, poise and great presence as she spoke. He suggested that perhaps she could move around rather than be at a single comfort spot.

Dave won as best evaluator (tie).

In harmony with today’s theme, Jim, the Table Topics Master, provided a collection of questions relating to success, chosen by number (1-5). Three improvisers variously talked about who is more successful, John F. Kennedy or Bill Gates; Most inspiring successful person: Abraham Lincoln; What success can be achieved in Toastmasters?  Naser, responded by talking about Alice In Wonderland being led by the special cat, and was our best table topics speaker.

Jean recognized Grace as having given her Icebreaker speech (and translating it into Cbinese) at yesterday’s Toastmaster segment at the U.S.-Asia Education Winter Summit Conference in Seattle.  See the February 9, 2015 blog post, below, for a summary of that meeting.

Attendees were:  Lynne, Jean, Jim, Robert, Barb, Pauline, Alice, Jung, Grace, Amritha, Kimberley, Dave, Naser along with guests: Diana W., Jessica K., Echo L., Kyle Y, Anisha A. and Divi P.  Jessica and Diana, two of our guests, joined our club today.  Our membership total is now at 22.

~~~~~ Respectfully Submitted by Robert, the Secretary [write now – in a comment] ~~~~~


  1. Nice job Robert. Thank you

  2. If 80% of success is just showing up then you were 100% successful. You gave so much information and detail that I wondered, "How can Robert remember all this?"

    Maybe Nasar's wife will come to a meeting. I'd love to meet her.

    Good job describing the Chinese Summit too.

  3. I agree with you Jean, as always Robert has excellently updated the blog. The details in the post took me back to the meeting and I started smiling, at the little funny moments that we had in the meeting. Thanks Robert for all your efforts.

  4. It was a fun meeting with five guests; two came as a result of the Chinese Summit!! Amritha was poised and prepared for her first time as Toastmaster. Both speeches were entertaining and informative. And Robert did an incredible job again, giving us a detailed recap of the meeting.