Because good times are worth remembering, here is an account of the Word Weavers meeting of February 11, 2015. At our first meeting in February, the room was almost bursting at the seams! It was wonderful to see so many Word Weavers and to welcome Mirja and Naile from Famous.
After a welcoming from our club president, Patrizia, who started with an opening question with a Carnival theme: "what is your favourite Carnival costume". The meeting was then handed over to our Toastmaster of the Evening, Martin. Thank you to Martin for taking over at the last minute from the scheduled TME.
After the joke of the evening, told by Joanne, we had three prepared speeches. The first prepared speech of the evening was from Michael K (CC #2) entitled "No Time for Losers". Michael essentially told us about his amazing evening at The Queen concert in Frankfurt. However, he told it in a very original way, using for much of the speech, what must have been the lyrics of every hit song Queen ever had.
Next to take the floor was Pia with her speech (Entertaining Speaker manual project# 2) entitled "Bounce, Talent - Myth or Hard Work". Pia told us about the book "Bounce" from Matthew Syed, which she received as a present from a client and which she had put aside for some time before reading it, believing it be something dry and heavy reading. In fact, it turned out to be quite the opposite. Pia told us that the book deals with the question, are champions born or are they made? The evidence is that success of an individual is not down to talent alone, but needs the combination of the following: countless hours of quality practice, a conducive environment, and their own motivation. This is something we Toastmasters can take away and use for our future successful Toastmaster's career.
The third prepared speech was by Darryl (Interpretive Reading manual project# 2 Interpretative Poetry) and entitled "Casey at Bat". It was the interpretation of the one of the best known poems in American literature (especially baseball). The poem was penned by Ernest Thayer in 1888 and there is quite a bit of history around it. The poem describes a baseball game where the home team from the fictional town of Mudville is losing by two runs in their last inning. Both the team and the crowd of 5,000 fans believe they can win if Mighty Casey, Mudville's star player, gets up to bat. However, the first two batters fail to get on to base and the next two batters, who are perceived to be weak hitters with little chance of reaching base, somehow get Casey a chance to bat. Surprisingly, both runners are now in scoring position and Casey represents the potential winning run. Casey is so sure of his abilities that he does not swing at the first two pitches, both called strikes. On the last pitch, the overconfident Casey strikes out, ending the game and ending the hopes of the crowd home in disbelief.
Ingo gave us an educational by on Making good Evaluations. The essence of a good evaluation is to start with two or three items of praise along with making one or two recommendations that you believe will help the speaker improve their next speech, the is often referred to as the sandwich technique. End your evaluation with some praise to motivate the speaker to make another speech.
Our Table Topics Master of the evening was Rita in her party hat. Keeping to the fancy dress theme of Carnival, Rita presented a series of photos and asked the participants to explain who they were.
Rainer was showed the photo of a man wearing a white apron and cap standing in a stainless steel kitchen. Rainer regaled us with a tale of how he was a Scottish butcher and the kitchen was his abattoir. His specialty was sheep, as he lived in Scotland, there were sheep are everywhere and they had to be exterminated at all costs. The advantage of this rather bloody profession is that he now has a lovely warm carpet made from sheep hides.
Carola's photo was of a football coach. Carola said that she was the new coach of Eintracht Frankfurt.
Karin's photo was of a well-dressed man drinking from a cup. Karin explained that her character was the English CEO of a major company who was very coolly drinking tea and eating biscuits, whilst informing the shareholders that the company was bankrupt but he didn't care because he was drinking tea.
In an unusual turn of events, two people were called up to act out the photograph of a couple - a man and a woman with pink hair. The two Word Weavers in questions were Isabelle and Michael S whose convincing double act of a bickering couple that had been together a long time but did not see eye to eye anymore, ending their relationship right there in front of us all, was very amusing.
Ingo was shown a photograph of a beautiful young woman. Ingo's message to us tinged with Indian words of wisdom (in India the saying goes that life flows like a river) was to enjoy looking young while you can before the wrinkles appear.
The last TT participant was Michael K who was shown a photograph of a little dog running. Michael K informed us that he was the dog Bello, who enjoyed chasing next door neighbor's cat and burying bones. Oh yes it's a dog's life!
Martin evaluated Michael, Joanne evaluated Pia and Mirja evaluated Darryl. Naile was our timekeeper, while Rainer counted our ahs and ums. Mirja was our grammarian and took a different approach to this task. As well as suggestions for grammatical improvement, Mirja picked out some of the phrases and expressions that caught her attention during the meeting such as "bridge back to the beginning", "out of your comfort zone" and "fall from the sky". Michael S gave us his unique view on our evening as the General Evaluator.
In other club business, the club contest has been scheduled for 25th March 2015. The Spring contest comprises of the International Speech Contest and Evaluation Contests. If you would like to participate in the contest or take on a contest role please let the contest organisers, Michael and Joanne know. The F3/F4 Area contest will be held on April 18th in the same location where the D95 contest was held the past November. Peter Smith, our Area Governor is looking for people to help run the contest, so be sure to let Patrizia know if you can help out. This will be different than the past few contests that have been held at Alt Wiesbaden, as this was a great venue for the D95 Contest.
Patrizia informed us that there had been a Word Weavers Officers meeting held prior to club meeting and that they looked at a few ways of livening up things. Our February 25th meeting is going to be held in a different location, the Himathafen Open Work Space in Wiebaden (website here). She invited us all to stay after the meeting for drinks and conversation in the restaurant (which was very well attended)
We look forward to welcoming you at our next meeting on 25th February.
Thank you to Joanne for the meeting summary!