Speak E-Z Blahs

In the Days of King Adobe, 7 July 2011

Project 1: The Folk Tale

Tonight was the first meeting of the Speak EZ Toastmasters Club for TI-year 2011-12. I was speaker #1. I gave the first speech in the Storytelling manual, which was to tell a folk tale. I selected In the Days of King Adobe. This is a cute tale we read in the classroom.

I practiced all afternoon and had a good presentation down. There were a couple things I would have improved if I worked on this longer, but it was well-developed.

As always, I had a Kretschmer evaluate me. Tonight it was Richard. Either he or his brother Michael evaluate most of my speeches. I could have told you he would mention my hands before I left home. Sure enough, he did. The Kretschmers always critique the speaker’s hand gestures. I think a speaker without hands would still get comments about hands. It’s as though it’s the same evaluation every time . . . even if they are evaluating someone else.

I was pretty solid. I had the audience’s attention. Even the sleeping ladies woke up to listen. What a dreadful venue (nursing home lobby) for speakers.

Many comments tonight spoke of Stephen Lochner’s prowess for winning the speech contests. The boy speaks pretty well, but he isn’t great. He spoke tonight. I thought he fell flat. He had a humorous angle to his persuasive speech in which he tried to convince us that Superman wasn’t as representative of truth, justice, and the American way as his nemesis Lex Luther was.

I voted for Bruce Cooper instead (I never vote for myself). Yeah, Bruce won. His speech was better than Stephen’s, but I didn’t think it was as good as mine. After winning once or twice early on here, I haven’t won squat since. I think that for whatever reason, my speaking style isn’t as appreciated in this club as it is in others.

Richard’s evaluation was dreadful. He was woefully over the time limit. He spent so much time in the beginning asking me who the target audience was. He admitted that he hadn’t paid attention to the introduction. Nice touch, Mr. Area Governor. He stammered along. His suggestion for improvement was for me to wear a hat to indicate when each person spoke. Of course, he demonstrated he had no clue about the speech requirements with that suggestion given I was not to perform the speech, but to interpret it.

Yeah, I am down on this club. It is so haphazardly put together. The meeting place sucks. There seems to be no professionalism at all. I am going to adjust my approach for the next six months. I will deliver my two speeches I need for the ALB and then just evaluate. I am not going to continue delivering speeches here as I am going to miss half the meetings due to the BOE (St. Mary Magdalen School) work I do. Rather than use the club to help pick up the pace elsewhere, I am going to re-adjust and concentrate my focus differently.

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