Monday, November 28, 2011

17th November 2011: It Was A Night!

“It was a night. Oo-oo what a night it really was; such a night!” and so goes the lyrics of an oldie by the late King of Rock-n-Roll, Elvis “the Pelvis” Presley. A song that is probably familiar with Toastmasters from the Baby Boomers generation!

The lyrics aptly describe the electrifying ambience of our Club’s regular meeting on Thursday night of 17th November 2011.

When I arrived at KDU in pretty good time well before 19:30 hours, the first question I was asked by the VPE was “Did you bring the program for the meeting tonight?”

“Huh?” The other Toastmasters Club (MBTC) where I hail from, the member who sources for the role players (invariably that person is the VPE - 95% of the time!) is also responsible for preparing and printing out the meeting program.

So, my spontaneous reply was “There’s no printout program!” Blame it on the Murphy’s Law (Oops, nearly mixed up with the title of another oldie). Even though at every Club meeting, as far as I know, there is that ubiquitous paper program, this time there was none i.e. zilch!

“Damage control” was triggered and instantaneous recovery procedures were set into motion. Johnson Yike promptly wrote the short version of the meeting program on the whiteboard so that everyone could stay on track on what was and would be happening. Thanks Johnson!

The meeting got off on the dot at 7.30 p.m. with ASA 2, Andrew Chieng, leading the singing of the “Negara Ku “ and then welcoming everybody especially the guests. President Steven Lai took over control and addressed the audience with his opening speech and soon after invited dear me – the one who blundered earlier! – to emcee the meeting as the TME.

President and TME Opening Address

What followed then on was on auto-pilot – every role player knew his/her routine, when to step forward to the stage and when to exit with the TME and subsequently the GE orchestrating the various acts like clockwork!

It was awesome even though without the paper program to guide us religiously, the hand-written short version displayed on the whiteboard was good enough. Kudos to every role player and speaker for knowing your cue exceptionally well!

There were temporary moments of derailment by the TME and the GE when the usual routines went slightly awry and not adhered to stringently. “Getting a bit rusty” quipped the GE and so was the TME.

Highlights of the meeting were as follows :-
  1. A couple of table topics given by TTM, Stephanie Look, were very challenging and wracked the brains of a number of speakers. One of them was stumped and dumbfounded but eventually managed to say something sensible. Hi Stephanie, be a bit more kind the next time. We do not have yet Toastmasters or guests the likes of Socrates, Confucius or Einstein in our midst!

    Table Topics Session

  2. Invocation Master, Nick Tozer, shared with us management and inspiring tips extracted from the classic book "Who Moved My Cheese?" It was appreciated by all. Fair dinkum, mate and thanks a lot!

    Teh Tark for the Soul

  3. Humour Master, the ornithologist extraordinaire, Bing, rattled off her entertaining anecdote about her recent vacation to the exotic island of Seychelles, a former French colony off the coast of Tanzania/Kenya – one of the favourite haunts of the rich and famous and Hollywood celebrities.
    “Bonjour Mademoiselle! Bonjour Monsieur!” and with that welcome greeting, she was showered with copious pecks on her cheeks and smooches. There were giggles and subdued laughter in response to the humorous incident as told by the ever ebullient and scintillating Bing. Well-Done!

    Humor Session

  4. All the prepared speech speakers, Jack, Nicolas, Nancy and Teoh delivered their assignments with gusto and sincerity. They were promptly evaluated by their respective evaluators i.e. Johnson, Jonathan, Calvin and Gan objectively.

    Take Charge By Saving
    Competent Communicator #9: Persuade Your Audience
    Speech Objective: refer here
    Evaluation Session: view here

  5. Jack, a first-timer delivered his maiden speech. From revealing to us a brief insight into his life-history and achievements to-date, we gathered that he is imbued with wanderlust and is another globetrotter like Bing. Thanks for the tip on which island in the Hawaiian archipelago to go to for one’s honeymoon or anniversary celebration!

    The Story Of Me
    Competent Communicator #1: Ice Breaker
    Speech Objective: refer here
    Evaluation Session: view here

  6. While delivering her speech from Project #3 in "The Entertaining Speaker Manual", Nancy had an unexpected bout of amnesia. She grimaced while attempting very hard to recollect that forgotten but apparently essential point in her text. She nearly threw her tantrums, was visibly upset and about to utter one of the expletives! However, her sense of propriety and decorum prevailed. She regained her composure after peeking into her written notes.
    Nancy – keep and stay cool always, yeah. It’s not a matter of life or death nor is it worth the ulcer to get uptight and fidgety over a relatively trivial matter!

    As The Night Begins
    Advanced Communicator, The Entertaining Speaker #3: Make Them Laugh
    Speech Objective: refer here
    Evaluation Session: view here

  7. The charismatic and charming, Jessy Chahal, executed the role of GE like a duck to water except for a minor slip-up. Who would have forgotten when she sounded “cheang, cheang, cheang” akin to sounds created when one strikes the Chinese gongs, during her evaluation. It was an allusion and a subtle reminder to the TME that next time please, please make sure that the meeting program is printed out and distributed to everybody attending the meeting. I hear you Jessy – loud and clear!

    General Evaluation

  8. Jessy’s team players executed their roles punctiliously without a hitch – speech evaluators, Ah-Counter (Joseph Tham) and Time-Keeper (Levin). Regarding the language evaluation, one of the words that were wrongly used was “beautifulness”. Ahem! The correct word should be “beauty!” as pointed out by Jessy.

  9. Oops, I almost forgot to mention the theme chosen by me for the meeting that night – “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” words borrowed from the back cover of the last issue of the “Whole Earth Catalog” published in 1974 and immortalized by the King of Tech aka (the late) Steve Jobs in his Commencement Speech delivered at Stanford University, Calif., USA in June 2005.

  10. Do you all realized that both Steve Jobs and the late Ralph C. Smedley started their business/organization from very humble and obscure beginnings? One was in his father’s garage in Cupertino, Calif. and the other in the basement of YMCA in Santa Ana, also in Calif. These two exemplary and admirable icons were the shakers and movers in their respective fields and areas of specialization. I have immense respect for them for they have transformed the lives and lifestyles of many people in the world today through their vision, creativity and imagination!
Overall, I enjoyed playing the role of TME that night. It refreshed my learning curve and skills as an emcee which have slackened somewhat. There is always room for improvement!

And to all the role players, thank you for carrying out your roles so gallantly and responsibly despite the “cheang, cheang, cheang” from the GE. With or without the printed meeting program, as far as our Club is concerned, the show must go on!

Last but not the least, heaps of thanks also go to the audience – toastmasters and guests especially to Ivy Fung, DPRO District 87 who has recently relocated to KL from Sabah - for being supportive, encouraging and lending your ears!

Guests' Feedback

Written By
Henry Fu
21st Nov 2011

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The morning walk at Bukit Kiara Park

This morning, a whole FOUR of us from D’Utama Toastmasters Club went for a refreshing morning walk at Bukit Kiara Park! That’s Jonathan Moh, Lim Bing Yee, Shi Wei and myself. This morning walk had started a little while ago and for the most part, takes place almost every week.

It does involve getting up rather early (maybe too early for some!) on a Saturday morning to be at the park by 7.30 am. However the effort is all worth it!

You are greeted by fresh morning air and nature’s green, and this never ceases throughout the walk! It rained lightly at some intervals but that didn’t dampen our spirits. The tarred pathways really make for an enjoyable walk.

Though it was only the four of us, it provided us with the opportunity to catch up with each other on what’s been happening in our lives lately. Which is something we don’t really have time for during our regular club meetings.

After the walk, we had breakfast at one of the coffeshops in Taman Tun Dr Ismail. And guess what? Area B5 Governor, Nancy Liew also joined us! We started discussing plans to organize even more fellowship activities so members of D’Utama Toastmasters Club, you can be assured of fun and exciting stuff to get involved in!

Want to join us for the next morning walk? Keep a lookout in your mailbox for details!

From Your Vice-President Membership 2011/2012,
Hoo Sze Ling, ACB

Friday, November 4, 2011

Regular Meeting on the 3rd November 2011

Extracted from an email

Dear Jamie and All,

Having been 'away' for a few Club meetings it was great to get back into the swing of things last night, with a super session run by our fellow member Jamie Phuah(first-time TME). Well done young lady.

TME's Introduction

Initially before the meeting started I thought "Where are the people/members?" because it was pretty spartan to begin with. Thank goodness more members/guests trickled in by 8pm to bring more warmth into the room, that was kindly set up by Patrick Ho, initally.

I always have a lot of fun at meetings, whether greeting new guests,volunteering for table topics, impromptly playing roles if asked, mingling at break and chatting during our' Supper Club' afterwards. It was great to see other members doing the same too, like Nick T hanging outside as ASA 1 for a longer time than expected to make sure guests were welcomed, signed in and directed through the doors of Room 1.08. Our ASA 2 Jack played his first role without a hitch too , later to be accepted as a new member of the Club. Welcome aboard Jack along with our new members VK and the other two lovely ladies to D'Utama.

Birthday Celebration for Sept & Oct

New Members' Acceptance

Although we were 'missing' our President, VPE and VPM  at the start of the meeting I must say kudos to Joseph, our VPPR, for bravely taking on the role of Acting President. You held yourself well and proved to be a good role-model for our guests to observe. Your speech #7 on the 'Family Virus' was apt! Hope our club doesn't go that way with too many absentees due to???? ...a' virus.' Keeping the Club healthy is important.

Family Virus
Competent Communicator #7: Research Your Topic
Speech Objective: refer here
Evaluation Session: view here

Listening to the wonderful speeches by Shi Wei on Mental health was educational along with the Kooi Ching or was that 'Kuching' give her take on how to run a meeting for her CL was refreshing. Good work Kooi Ching and congratulations to you on achieving your CL title.

Mental Health
Competent Communicator #7: Research Your Topic
Speech Objective: refer here
Evaluation Session: view here

Meeting Roles & Responsibilities (A Successful Club series presentation)

It was also great to see Andrew Chien take on the role of Language Evaluator for the first time and deliver it in a clear and concise manner.

I think everyone who carried out a role last night did a wonderful job. Always adding hearty flavour to the night were our 'mature' members DTM Siva, DTM Johnson and DTM G,Jayam and of course not excluding our ex-Past Presidents ACS Nancy, ACS Gan T.H, ACB Teoh C.M and ACS Calvin Lim. What I think that makes our Club tick is the combination of the 'young' and 'mature' members making things happen. Also having a chuckle and fantastic belly-laugh sends off a 'feel-good' feeling after a hard day at work. Don't you agree?

Teh Tark for the Soul (Invocation Session)

Humour Session

Keep doing what you do best everyone for D'U.
Do have a happy weekend.

Yours in Toastmasters.
Lim Bing Yee, ATM-B

Claudine Lee receives her Member Kit from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Diana Khoo receives her Member Kit from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Choong Voon Kwong receives his Member Kit from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Jack Ng receives his Member Kit from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Tan Kooi Ching receives her Competent Leader ribbon from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Lim Bing Yee, ATMB receives her ribbon for Best Table Topic Speaker from VPE, Jonathan Moh, CC

Update: Videos included on 15 November 2011