Meeting No.791 'Miracles'

This was our last meeting for 2017 and our first meeting with Pathways being operational (for less than 24 hours).
Sgt-at-Arms, David G. started the meeting spot on at 7:30 pm. Twelve members were present and a guest, Mark Xu, who has been in Australia only for a few months and who was member at a club in China.
Business Session was conducted with Chih D. in the chair, and matters at hand were moved expeditiously.
After a raft of program changes, Udana A. took control of the Educational Segment as Meeting Toastmaster.
Thought of the Day was presented by Daniel I. Word of the Day presented by Wendy P. was “snafu”, originally a military acronym for “situation normal, all fouled up”. The Word of the Day for this meeting was a real hit, as it was used profusely throughout the meeting.
The Round Robin, ably coordinated by Meeting TM, Udana A., was held around the meeting theme (miracles), and the question was “Do you believe in miracles?’
Peter K. followed with four fabulous Table Topics, also around the theme of “miracles”. Wendy P., DTM, evaluated the four respondents, praised them for their existing skills, and gave a common suggestion: when answering Table Topics the lectern is not needed, get rid of it, place at the back; this will allow you to do “full body” non-verbal communication with your audience.
After the tea break we resumed the meeting with a bang. Four speakers, including two icebreakers, a second and a seven speech!
Speaker #1 was Jinal M., and her icebreaker speech entitled “The Great Fight”. Jinal told us of her life in India, how being the eldest allowed her to “boss around” her sisters, and of her struggles to be able to go to a good secondary school, how to go to tertiary education, and how to win her parents to consent to her marriage to her chosen partner and not go into an arranged marriage.
Speeker #2 was Tayla H., with her icebreaker speech “My journey to Toastmasters”. Tayla told us of her love for her grandparents, of her puppy dog and pet chickens, but also how envy and greed hit her extended family. How all this affected her personal life and her health, and how now at age 22 and in her last year as a law student she has come to Toastmasters not just to develop her personal skills, but as a cathartic experience to make new friends and become a balanced person.
Speaker #3, doing only his second speech, was Greg Hynds. The title of his speech was “Jurisdiction over Terrorists”. Greg told us of the terrorist attack in a café in CBD Sydney in 2014 with two deaths and several injured. Some people, after the incident, wanted the military to become involved in dealing with terrorists. The rest of Greg’s powerful speech was about why this is not a good idea, and how the police are best suited to the task.
Speaker #4, doing speech 7, was Daniel B. and his speech title “Problems”. Daniel B. is a NLP practitioner and he used his knowledge to show us how some people know they have a “problem” and know what to do to overcome it, but don’t as they are afraid of losing their identity and the “secondary benefits” the get. He had a breakfast stool as visual aid. To the top of the class for innovation, as in my 20 plus years in Toastmasters this is the first time I have seen this.
Patty K was harkmaster, and she made it clear that no one should answer her questions but the persons nominated by her. Which is fair enough as we want all members to keep paying attention.
Wendy P, gave the report on WOD, and remarked how well the members had taken up “snafu”.
Stephen M. gave the Timer’s report, and following him David G. gave us his General Evaluation. David has been a member for several years now, and his experience can e seen by the quality of his reports.
The members present voted for Meeting 791 as Best Table Topic, Tayla H. (for the third meeting in a row!!); Best Evaluator, Stephen M. (for Tayla H’s icebreaker); and Best Speaker, Greg H. Congratulations Tayla, Stephen, and Greg!
We’ll now have out Festive Season recess and our next meeting will be on 17 January, the theme will be “tasks”.
Pathways is now operational for our club, and all members are reminded to go to, log in and go to Pathways to select your path and start your journey on this wonderful path.
See you all in January and may you all have a great festive season, surrounded by your families, friends, and people who appreciate and like you.

Daniel I.