This was my eighth speech in the Competent Toastmaster series.  It was originally given in 2002.  This was the first speech I made which was not written out word-for-word.  I began using the idea of an outline to speak around.

I marvelled to my wife the other day about how wonderful nature is.  We were looking at the fallen pine needles in our yard.  She suggested I rake them.  I shared with her that the pine tree lost the needles on purpose.  It will help keep the roots warm this cold winter.  Isn’t nature great?  It has a mechanism for everything.

Mr. Toastmaster, fellow Toastmasters, distinguished guests

Nature provides for many things.  A mother horse nudges the fawn to stand up.  Piping plovers migrate along the same routes year in and year out from the northern reaches of Canada to South America.  An estuary acts as a filter to protect the waterways.  And seeds sprout daily to provide food and energy for all these processes to work.

Seeds . . . interesting little things.  A single seed can grow up to be a massive redwood or a hearty beach grass.  A knotted pine or a tulip signifying spring.

All seeds need care: some water, sunlight, and nutrients from the ground.

I asked my Dad where do babies come from when I was about six or seven.  He told me I had to plant a seed.  I did . . . but no baby grew.

My father did plant seeds though.

Don’t miss work!

Stared at the ass-end of dogs every single day during the summer and every weekend during the school year.

To provide for his family.


bored to death

Seed: graduate school
Seed: teaching

Stay out of the faculty lounge

Seed: meeting Gert
Seed: marriage
Seed: purchasing a home

Now look at us.  Things are blossoming everywhere.

All this because someone planted a seed long ago in my father.  He encouraged my dad to go to college.  To be a man.  To care for himself and his family.  Those ideas blossomed fully!

Also blogged on this date . . .

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