Fourth online meeting, Tuesday 19 May

We had such a good meeting on Tuesday night. Everyone at Spinnaker Toastmasters is really nailing these new online meetings. I’m sure most of you are loving sitting beside the fire all nice and warm and cosy or in your office all ergonomically correct and efficient (yeah right!) – but the best thing of all is not having to go outside into the dark and drive home afterwards!

Dale ran the meeting on Tuesday so of course it went without a hitch. The word of the day was CRYPTIC and some brave souls used it well.

Gary’s Table Topics were all about the post-Covid-19 world. If you could Zoom anyone in the world, who would it be? If you could choose anywhere, where would you spend lockdown next time? Should working from home two days a week be compulsory? If you could go anywhere, where would you like to go for a trip outside New Zealand? Ron knew how to impress his better half and said that he would Zoom Jacqui any day of the week. Darrell would go straight back to Disneyland for his post-Covid holiday and I said working from home should be compulsory, as long as you had the house to yourself! There were some other excellent table topics but unfortunately your slacker of a general evaluator didn’t note them all down.

Albertus didn’t hold back as Table Topics evaluator. He gave us all a good rark-up about having a beginning, middle and end to the speech. It was good to have that reminder, especially as when you are talking to a screen and your entire audience is on mute, it can be easy to ramble on a bit (noted from experience).

Kathy gave us a seminar on Evaluations which was really rather superb. The big message was that there are four types of evaluator – the Fan, the Reporter, the Captain and the Coach. We all need to aspire to be the Coach – exciting and motivating with good commendations on what worked in a speech and also insightful recommendations so that the speechmaker can learn and improve for next time. Kathy’s opening line – “if you want to improve your club, improve the quality of the evaluations” really hit home with me and I felt that she was bang on.

Ian had me roaring with laughter although he couldn’t hear it. His speech was “The Irish Empire” and he let us know exactly how Ireland has taken over the world without the rest of us noticing.

And then Megan came through with one of her wonderful stories – this one called “Food Glorious Food” all about eating the best schnitzel in the world on a forbidden mountain in Switzerland.

Our evaluators did a great job with Darrell mentioning something that I wish everyone at my work could hear – what can the other participants see of you? Make sure it’s not your forehead and a screen full of ceiling!

We missed Johanna and Paul and Pete but other than that it was a really good online meeting. I am missing our normal meetings and the rush of being in front of a room picking up on the audience reactions and really being able to perform but we are making the most of a difficult situation and learning how to project ourselves through a screen so we’re doing well!

Looking forward to seeing you all on 2 June.

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