President’s review of the meeting on 6th November

Bonfire night had come and gone!

You could have fooled me as there were plenty of sparks flying at Ripley!

Our transformation to using the D71 portal is giving more shocks than a box of fireworks.

Come 4.30 on Thursday Patricia our VPE lit the blue touchpaper.

Now everyone stand well back!!

Our Sergeant At Arms Anthony Smith jumped in and opened the meeting. We are off!

Tony was standing in for Guy Dessoy who took over from Peter Bull – yes one of those nights.

The usual ramblings by our club President led us to our top guy folks, Ian Brett. Ian was coerced at the very last minute to stand in as our Toastmaster of the evening.

A massive thank you to Ian who produced another sterling performance as our acting Guy Fawkes, a job well done with huge aplomb. Ian led the meeting extremely efficiently and we all knew we were in for a blast.

Eddie Barnes gave us a brilliant hot tip: “get out there and do it” and speak to other clubs, organizations and gatherings. It’s scarier than a dark alleyway on Halloween but it sooooo broadens your horizons you know. Thank you Eddie!

Alex Clark warmed us up with a real sparkler: “what was the first record you bought?” Gee I felt old when I said Mungo Jerry then someone mentioned Neil Sedaka. Phew, I was off the hook.

We were ‘enchanted’ by our grammarian Julie who lit up the evening and gave a thorough report on our parlez (you know what I mean).

Our two speakers were extremely entertaining, delivering high standard speeches with hidden messages.

Albert Akhende with “Merchison Falls” a beauty spot in Uganda. Watch out for the flies though and the economy option may not appeal to everyone.

Karen Mefflin, an advanced speaker, rocked and rolled us with her Michael Jackson story. “Billy Jean is not my love….”. I still have that tune playing in my head and I am polishing up on my moon dance.

Thank you Albert and Karen for two excellent speeches.

Eddie Barnes doubled up and evaluated Albert Akende. He is a clever stick like that and delivered a thoroughly clever evaluation, highlighting what Albert did well and how Albert could have lit up the room. Well done and thank you Eddie.

Always good value when Dave Henson evaluates. He is a super evaluator. Dave gave some uplifting commendations and hit the spot with clever recommendations.

Our two evaluators displayed the art of good feedback. Yes, the speakers learn, but by demonstrating their recommendations, the whole audience learns.

Our VPE Patricia Caesar led the Table Topics and threw out some whacky challenging questions. Now ladies and gentleman, there are three things we try to avoid discussing  in Toastmasters, politics, religion and things of a sexual nature. Patricia blew that philosophy wide apart. Well bully for you girl because we all have to deal with some tricky things in life and we witnessed an artful display by our table topic speakers.

Royston made me chuckle when asked what was his favourite colour.  He used a brilliant delaying tactic….can you repeat the question please? No he could not believe it either! Sometimes the simple things in life can just throw you.

Very well done to all our table topic speakers!

Our guest Tracey Seed walked away with top spot. Wow she certainly showed us how to handle a mind bending question. Pause for a few moments, hold the pause….think, think, think,…. then boom let it fly. I learnt a lot from that in a subliminal way….catch my drift.

Our Table Topics speakers were evaluated by Vinod Venkatanarayana, another fine evaluator who carefully went about his business giving recommendations where he could.

It’s not easy, with many speakers, to find recommendations for all.

Finally our evening was completed by our General Evaluator, Evelyn Khan-Panni. This evaluation and feedback was extremely valuable to our speakers as it was to a very high standard. Recommendations to all with a beautiful club tip to re arrange our room to help us focus our attention on our audience not to an empty space in the middle. Every now and then we all need that proverbial rocket and Evelyn certainly let us have it! Thank you Evelyn.

Back to the President for a roundup of a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

The messages of the evening came from Patricia and Evelyn:

Patricia – the D 71 portal can be our friend, if we use it that is. Please if you are looking for a role and I know you all are, it’s the only way to learn in this business, then sign up today, now, quick the speaking slots are going fast!

Next time our room will be arranged differently. Oh yes, watch this space!

Thank you everyone and I look forward to seeing you at our next meeting on Thursday 20th November.

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