Thursday, May 28, 2015

May 26th, 2015 Theme: Listening . . .

“I’m always relieved when someone is delivering a eulogy and I realize that I’m listening to it”. ~~ George Carlin

Welcome to the last meeting in May blog. Today, we had 2 guests attend our meeting. 

Lynne was our toastmaster and offered information about what it means to listen and the benefits of doing so.  She offered several memorable (if you listened) quotes such as:
• I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me a thing. So if am going to learn, I must do it by listening. – Larry King

• One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say. – Bryant H. McGill
• There is a difference between listening and waiting for your turn to speak. -- Simon Sinek
  The GATE  team was: Chizuko  as Grammarian (Ubiquitous), Kathy as the Ah Counter, and Sue as the Timer. The General Evaluator was Amritha.

Tobias was our first speaker today. He completed his 1st speech (The Icebreaker) from the Competent Communicator Manual Project 1. The speech was entitled “Public Speaking, A Lost Art” and was delivered in 5 minutes. 
Tobias wove two themes extemporaneously into his talk. 

The first were details about himself, such as his name being a biblical one and that he was the youngest, by 18 years, of 6 siblings. He also briefly talked about his pairs of children of each gender.  He was in the marines and now has a job as a local firefighter. 

The second was his attraction to public speaking: he previously worked at being a singer and an actor. His feeling and preference is to be in this club to refine his public speaking skills. He’s not happy when his children concurrently text and eat dinner. 

Robert was his evaluator. Robert liked the weaving of two themes in his talk, which is rare for an Icebreaker speech. He praised Tobias for to use hand gestures expertly to underscore his words, to offer excellent eye contact with the audience and to show extreme confidence.

He noticed that Tobias stood anchored in front of the lecturn and let his body movement and gestures attract the audience’s attention. He recommended a wider spread of vocal variety from soft to loud volume and from lower to higher tonality.

Our second speaker was Naser.  He offered us another story from the Storytelling Manual (Project #2). His speech was called: Corruption”  and was completed within 7 minutes. 

Naser started his speech referring to Jackie Chan’s statement several years ago about the United States being the most corrupt in the world (rather than China). 

He then told a story about himself, when he was much younger and living in India and preparing for 5th grade exams. His mother tried to motivate him by promising a red bicycle if he could achieve first rank. While studying very hard, he took the exams and was not able to improve beyond fourth rank.

Because he wanted the red bicycle so badly, he forged his report card to indicate First Rank. He was able to get the bicycle and was extremely pleased and rode it during the winter break.

He returned the report card unrestored and the forgery was soon exposed and his family notified. He felt ashamed, not of doing something wrong, but of being found out.

Lessons from this experience were: The teacher will use pen, not pencil to issue report card scores; The mother will stop motivating via bribery; and Naser learned that in the future, he must see it through, if he plans to do something that is (legally, morally) wrong. He concluded that there is a thin line between motivation and corruption.
Naser was voted best speaker.

Jean was his evaluator. Jean complimented Naser about his enthusiasm for getting a red bicycle. His face, voice, gestures were excellent. He depicted in his talk, a great mom. She thought that the moral of the story was to see things from all sides before making a big move.
Jean was voted best evaluator.

Anisha was the Table Topics Master for today’s meeting. She offered a grab bag of physical objects taken from her office desk that she asked 5 volunteers to extol their features to sell.

Jim spoke about his choice of a 12 inch architect’s triangular scale as not only an item of measurement but an item of discipline.

Jim was best table topics speaker.

Robert demonstrated the versatility of Safety Goggles in various positions on his face and body.

Tobias talked about his pick of a retractable metal tape measure as a metaphor for the progress (in distance) of the Seattle Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Tunnel.
Lynne chose a tube of toothpaste which she suggested could be adhered to walls or clothing.

Sue picked a Dry Erase Marker that offered the holder a license and tacit permission to write or draw.

Amritha was our General Evaluator for today. She liked Kathy’s example of using the word of the day (ubiquitous) in a supplemental way when explaining the duties of the Ah Counter. She enjoyed the volunteer speakers during the table topics segment, who tried to sell various objects. She was also pleased with the speakers and their respective evaluators.

Jung was our humorist for today. She recounted the unexpected consequences of a marital spat that escalated to the level of neither person speaking to each other, except by written note.

Some Announcements:

Our club has reached distinguished club level before April 30, 2015. Consequently, the club officers have been invited to a Celebration of Success 2015 Dinner on Friday, May 29 at Renton Technical College. Contact Jean for registration details.

Barbara Katz, currently our Area 54 Governor, has been elected to the position of Division E Director, which will begin on July 1, 2015. 

Attendees were:  Linda, Jean, Jim, Lynne, Naser, Sue, Robert, Pauline, Jung, Mary, Kathy, Anisha, Amritha, Tobias, Chizuko, David A. as well as 2 guests: Molly K., Diana C. Our membership total remains at 28.

~~~~~ Respectfully Submitted by Robert, the Secretary [Speak through your fingers and comment] ~~~~~


  1. Another thorough and detailed recap of our meeting. Thanks, Robert.

  2. Super blog/minutes, Robert! Your ear for detail is fabulous. Even though I come to the meetings, I learn new tidbits through your summaries every time.