Sunday, July 12, 2015

July 7th 2015 Theme: Independence Day

The new electronic independence re-creates the world in the image of a global village." ~~ Marshall McLuhan

Welcome to the first meeting in July blog. Today, we had 6 guests attend our meeting. 
Amritha was our toastmaster. 

The GAT(e) team was: Jung as Grammarian (Amicable), Julie as the Ah Counter, and Andrew as the Timer. 

Our new officers for the term 
July - Dec 2015 were inducted at the start of the meeting. James Collins, Area 54 Director, presided over the induction ceremony. 

Before the induction of 
new officers, he thanked 
the outgoing officers for 
their invaluable services.

The new officers for the next 6 months are:
• Linda, President           
• Naser, VP Education
• Grace, VP Membership 
• Diana, VP Public        Relations
• Amritha, Secretary       
• Jim, Treasurer
• Lynne, Sergeant at Arms

Naser was our first speaker today. He gave a talk from the Humorously Speaking Manual, Project 3. It was entitled “Flying Guru” and was delivered within 10 minutes.

Naser began his talk by asking – How many in the room would believe him if he said he could teach us to breathe fire or jump out of the space needle? Not many hands were raised.
He shared with us the meaning and origin of the word Guru - a Sanskrit word for teacher, meaning the remover of ignorance. In today’s world, people often tend to ignore the many gurus around them. How does a guru feel when he is not taken seriously? To demonstrate his point he led us through a story.

You are seated in a flight flying across the Brazilian rain forests, a sudden engine failure leads to a crash. Surviving with some injuries, you find yourself amongst a group of people – all of them with their eyes covered with leaves. You soon figure out you could be their guru - teach them to remove their blindfold and see. And thus let them experience the beautiful world around them. Who would believe you? The problem is that people do not believe what they do not understand. He finished the story with the question - What can you do to promote understanding?

He suggested that we be open minded and be willing to listen to what gurus try to say.

He prompted us to see ourselves as gurus.

Naser was voted best speaker.

Jean was his evaluator.  Jean liked how Naser started his speech by talking about “dragons breathing fire” “jumping out of the space needle”. She mentioned how the use of his punchline, “A Guru might be Superman”  fit in really well with his sudden costume change.

She appreciated the involvement of audience as gurus in his talk and how he prompted the audience to think of themselves as gurus. She especially liked his statement “People don’t believe what they don’t understand.”  She suggested creating more space for himself by pushing back the lectern.

Our second speaker was Nicki.  She offered her 1st
Speech from the Competent Communicator Manual, Project #1 – Ice Breaker. She completed her speech within 6 minutes.

Nicki started her talk with the question - What should she be called – Nicki or Nicole? Growing up, she was called Nicole only when in trouble. At all other times, she went by her nickname Nicki. Now that she is a grown up woman, a mother and a business woman, would people take her name Nicki seriously? Apparently everyone did.

She started her career and became a successful insurance agent. After 10 years, she decided to pursue life as a nurse after helping her brother-in-law survive cancer. She felt a deep calling to be of service to others and went to college at age 35 to get a degree in pre-nursing.

Soon she realized she didn’t want to be a nurse, instead was drawn towards being a business owner to pursue her ideas and vision. Today she runs her company “Seattle International BioMed” providing connections between Brazilian raw materials Suppliers and Medical and Chemical Biotechnology U.S. Companies.

She is the loving mother and teacher of her 16 year old son who taught her a lot about patience, understanding, hard work and determination.
At the end of her speech, she concluded that she has chosen to continue with both Nicki and Nicole.

Jim was her evaluator. He congratulated Nicki on her 
solid Ice Breaker. He liked how she started with a question, maintained suspense throughout and how she tied it beautifully with the ending of her speech.

He liked her well- paced talk with smooth transitions. He pointed out that her speech was organized in a logical manner and appreciated her sense of humor.

Jim was pleased with how well Nicki handled the podium. As a suggestion, he encouraged her to move out in front of the podium and get more comfortable in her future talks.

Jim was voted the best evaluator.

Our third speaker was Anisha.  She offered her 3rd Speech from the Competent Communicator Manual,
Project #3 – Get to the point. Her title was “Is it safe to jump in the lake?” She completed her speech within 7 minutes.

Throughout her speech, Anisha helped us understand the problem of water pollution. She shared with us how a friend of hers asked a question “Is it safe to jump into the lake in summer?” Given the fact that bodies of water are extremely polluted in her home country (India), she set out to look at the situation in Seattle. How safe are our bodies of water?

She posed a question to the audience “Where would water runoff occur more if 10 gallons were dumped onto a lawn or onto a pavement?” It turns out due to pavement being waterproof, water runoff occurs moreso on pavement.

She educated us about storm water runoff and how it affects the fish and wild life of our natural water resources. Fast flowing water causes erosion and thus sediments deposit in water sources which in turn cause depletion of oxygen from water – posing threat to wildlife and fish. Storm water runoff also increases the temperature of the streams thus adversely affecting wildlife and fish.

She mentioned that she would share tips and solution to deal with storm water runoff in her next talk.

Linda was her evaluator. Linda appreciated the 
technical topic that Anisha chose. However, she did suggest further explanation of some terms. 

Linda liked how the club members were involved in the speech. She pointed out Anisha had fine eye contact, good speech structure and her nervousness seemed very controlled. She wished that Anisha could have answered her leading question, “What can we do about Water Runoff?” in this speech rather than the next one.
She suggested Anisha to speak a bit louder so that her message is clear to the whole room.

Barb was our Table Topics Master. Due to time constraints, we had only 2 table topics speakers who were our guests Marcus and James Collins.

Marcus spoke about one brave/foolish act that he remembers. He spoke about how he foolishly picked up a table topics question during the meeting without actually realizing he had to speak. 

He was voted the best Table Topics Speaker.

James Collins spoke about how parents and children find challenges in day to day life. By letting kids learn by trial and error, he pointed out it is hard as parents to watch them and not correct them often. While taking this approach, many times he watches his children learn the hard way.

Dave was our humorist. He shared a joke about an experience riding a horse.  One day while he was horse riding, the horse started bouncing out of control. No matter how hard he tried to hold on, he was thrown off but remained hanging down from the horse as his foot got caught in the stirrup. Just as he was giving up hope and losing consciousness, the Walmart Greeter came and unplugged the horse!

Attendees were:  Linda, Robert, Naser, Grace, Pauline, Dave, Rance, Diana, Andrew,  Barb, Jim, Julie, Jean, Anisha, Nicki, Jung, Amritha as well as 6 guests: Marcus, Steve W., Stephanie T., Liz L.,  Jerry H. (a previous member who plans to reactivate his membership) and James Collins
Our active membership total currently is at 29.

Respectfully Submitted,

Amritha Imandi, Secretary
Public Speaking Northwest #9406


  1. Beautiful job, Amritha!! You were Toastmaster and you also captured so much detail...I feel like I was there!!

    1. Thank You Lynne for your encouraging words. I enjoyed updating the blog. Many thanks to Robert for correcting me and filling in the details that i missed.

  2. Amritha, you showed strong facilitation skills in keeping a fully packed, eventful meeting within the time frame for a club meeting. Your blog reporting is very impressive as well.

  3. Nice post to read. Thanks for sharing with us. Keep up the great work i’ll be visiting to your blog.

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