Thursday, March 19, 2015

Mar. 17th, 2015 Theme: All Things Irish

No man is an Ireland. ~~ Chicago Mayor Richard Daley

Welcome to the St. Patrick’s Day meeting blog. On this day, we had 2 guests come to visit.  
Barb was our toastmaster and conducted a timely and educational meeting.  Notable were the Irish phrases like: Any Crack? (What’s the news?), and response: Divil a bit (Not much.) and the Irish blessing: May cat eat you and devil eat the cat.
The GATE  team was: Jung as Grammarian (Brilliant and beautifully handwritten pages!), Amritha as the Ah Counter, Kathy as the Timer, and Jim as the General Evaluator. 

Two of our members were recognized for their achievements of goals. Naser completed the requirements of his Competent Communicator Manual and received a 10th Speech award. Lynne completed the requirements of her Competent Leadership Manual and received her recognition certificate.
Jean was our first speaker of the afternoon. She completed the 6th project (Vocal Variety) of the Competent Communicator Manual just above 12 minutes. Her speech title was "The DCP – The Bigger Picture".

Jean provided a clear description of the Distinguished Club Program (DCP) and all of the point components needed by a club to get that award. She noted that our club has received the DCP in 3 consecutive years, a tribute to our club members and officers who progress in their individual toastmaster goals. She offered the Member Goal Tracking poster and two pre-placed handouts. One was a visual description of two tracks a member could take to achieve a Distinguished Toastmaster award.

The other was a snapshot of our clubs progress this year towards a DCP award. We have until June 30, 2015 to get the needed, remaining goals. Currently, we have achieved Select Distinguished (7 Goals met) and need 2 more goals for getting President’s Distinguished. Also, on May 19, 2015 our club will be 12 years old.

Jean was voted best Speaker.

Linda was her evaluator. Linda liked that Jean offered lots of interaction and eye contact. She was grateful for the Tracking Poster and the handouts, which kept the speech on track with the audience. She wondered about what led up to the creation of this club in 2003. The energy level with which Jean spoke was very attention getting.

Our second speaker, Jessica, completed her second speech, from the Competent Communicators Manual (Organize your speech) within 6 minutes. The name of her speech was "Walkers and Optimists". Jessica noted that her New Year’s Resolutions were to think positive thoughts and to become more optimistic. This was also a way to strengthen her long-term health.

She is looking forward to attending College in the Fall to take Calculus and Computer Science classes.  As a teenager, she had been prone to be easily discouraged and pessimistic about completing school. She looks up to TV heroes, like those Zombies that populate “The Walking Dead”. Those characters show optimism, persistence and a deep down conviction that there has got to be a way to resolve any difficult situation.

Naser was her evaluator. He liked her opening up about her New Years Resolutions and suggested a more interesting beginning might be to say: Did you know that a New Year’s Resolution can extend your life?  He liked her references to the inspiring characters in “The Walking Dead” TV Show. He thought of a different way of organizing the speech would give it more interest. He thought to let the Structure of the speech be in the telling of a story: First, you went to a party; Second, you got up the next morning; The audience is now hooked into wondering what happened in between those two events.

Naser won the best Evaluator award today.

Jim was our General Evaluator. He thought that the GATE team was effective in the conduct of their roles and the speakers and evaluators were enthusiastic and precise in their words and interactions with the audience.

Our humorist was Robert, who told two very different stories involving deaths. One was about a man’s prediction to his wife in his afterlife and how she responds. The other was a longer story about a man named Artie and his success in making headlines but in a pun-ish-ing way.

Attendees were:  Linda, Lynne, Jean, Jim, Robert, Barb, Pauline, Jung, Grace, Dave A., Preston, Diana, Alice, Jessica, Naser, Kathy and Amritha, along with guests: Diane W. and Sue F. Sue F. is expecting to rejoin us on April 1.  Our membership total is currently at 26.

~~~~~ Respectfully Submitted by Robert, the Secretary [Say the word(s) or comment] ~~~~~


  1. Thanks for your recap Robert. Barb did a great job as Toastmaster...I learned some thing "Irish" I'd known before....

  2. Robert continues to summarize the meeting with wit and precision.