Public Speaking

March 18 – Signs of Spring

Written March 26th, 2014
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Toastmasters International


It’s Spring, at least on paper, and Toastmaster Sue gets us to think about what makes us feel like it’s Spring.  Is it the crocuses, or the sneezing and watery eyes?

For speech #3 from the Persuasive Speaking Manual, Phil spoke on “The Impending Crisis of the South”.  The audience became the Republican Party in the mid 1800’s. His argument was about the crisis of slavery in the South and the opportunity that the Republican Party has to influence the nation to abolish slavery. Phil gave several examples of the time to support his argument and encouraged the party to print copies of a book on the topic and distribute it to voting white men.

Lisa, for her Speech #7, researched and presented “The NEPA Process”. NEPA stands for the National Environmental Protection Act. Lisa gave the historical context of the law and the events leading up to it being signed into law by President Nixon in 1970. She explained the environmental impact statement (EIS) and used the examples of both Love Canal and the Duwamish River.

Since we were short a speaker, Bruce agreed to give an impromptu speech.  Prior to Lisa’s speech the members and guests were asked to think of topics for Bruce to think about. Bruce chose “The Joys of Owning Cats” which turned out to be a bit of a satirical title. He gave a humorous speech with three main points 1) cats don’t adapt 2) the cult of personality and 3) economics of Versailles.

Table topics master Sandra, who did not grow up with Spring as we know it, asked the speakers questions about Spring as they know it.

Our next meeting, April 1st, is our club’s anniversary and the theme will be our history.  Don’t be a fool and miss it!  See you there!

Bruce talks about his favorite kind of pet

March 4th – Celebrating Dr. Seuss

Written March 9th, 2014
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Toastmasters International


On March 2, Dr. Seuss would have turned 110 and Toastmaster Amie celebrates his work by being her best Toastmaster self because “Today you are you!  That is truer than true! There is no one alive that is you-er than you!”

“You have brains in your head.  You have feet in your shoes.  You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.”  For her Speech #8 Emily used visual aids to explain some critical elements to a successful hike. She looked the part and pulled items out of her backpack to give her speech structure.

“From there to here, and here to there, funny things are everywhere.” Christine, for her Speech #4, spoke about all of the stereotypes of the Northwest. She talked about the Pemco Insurance commercials and how it can take some time for someone from out-of-town to understand what it means to be a Northwest native.

“Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh the thinks you can think up if only you try!” Joel’s Speech #2 taught us that correlations exist with everything and they are very important for how we make decisions and understand the world around us.  He gave examples through the use of visual displays of data such as info graphics, graphs, lists and pictures.

First time Table topics master Yan used her new found love of Dr. Seuss to inspire her questions to our brave speakers.

Not sure what great theme we have in store for our next meeting, March 18th, but remember, “Today is good.  Today is fun. Tomorrow is another one.”   See you there!

New member Marja

All quotes from Dr. Seuss


February 18 – And the Winners are…

ContestantsLook out Ellen D – it may not be the Oscars, but Toastmaster Valorie kept our International Speech and Evaluation contest rolling in her funny and sophisticated way.  Or is it her sophisticated and funny way?  It was a great night.  The speeches were intense and the evaluations invaluable.

Thanks to our talented contestants and all who contributed by filling roles and simply attending! Not to mention our chair Sandra who pulled it all together.

Winners Franni, Christine, Amie and John will be going on to the Area Contest on April 4th.  Congratulations!


Our intrepid contestants Lisa, Amie, Franni, Christine, John, and Judy

October 29 – Tales from the Hearth

Written December 10th, 2013
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Special Events, Toastmasters International

TomPhilBugHatThe end of October brings with it the scary, weird and wonderful.  Toastmaster Bruce got us started in the right direction with that overview of what Tales from the Hearth is all about.

Karen brought her rational and irrational fears to life with her speech #5 “What are YOU afraid of?”, as she asked the audience to consider their own fears.

Inspiring all of us, Tom talked about what inspires him with his speaking in his speech #3 “Two Hours and Two + Minutes” and the magic of getting to the point.

Sherry rounded out the evening with her speech from the Story Telling Manual (the folk tale) “The Cougar”. She had the audience’s full attention as she cautioned the BYU parents from the incoming class of the BYU cougar and her brush with fictional death.  OOO SCARY!

Table topics master Valorie kept us going with our “Tales” theme by asking her ‘volunteers’ about their Halloween memories.

We love our themes!  Come and experience our next one.

Just another night at 832 with Tom and Phil

October 15 – Oktoberfest!

Written October 24th, 2013
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Toastmasters International

JohnSandra101513sIn October, beer is king and our own king, Toastmaster Don, got us thinking about the beer (or whatever) we were going to have after the meeting.

In her Icebreaker “Parts Unknown”, Christine spoke about her chosen adventurous career working on ships, the countless places she has traveled to and the good & bad cuisine she has tried.

Although Sandra isn’t much of a beer drinker, with her speech #5 “Vitamin B, Why Beer is Good for Health”, she made the case with 7 points of why beer is good for you.  If all else fails you can always pour it on your hair for strength and shine.

Last January Valorie had the great idea to transition into a runner. During her very entertaining  Entertaining Speech #1,  “See Valorie Run”, she talked about the process she went through to achieve her goals and the thrills of running a 10k and half marathon in Disney Land WITH HER MOM!

Table topics master Kristine challenged the ‘volunteers’ to tell a story based on random photos she picked out from the newspaper. We only had time for three, but wow – you just never know what will happen in Table Topics!

For our next meeting we are taking advantage of a fifth Tuesday with one of our favorite themes, “Tales from the Hearth”.  It will be hair-raising.  See you there!

Speaker Sandra and evaluator John

Less is More

Written October 8th, 2013
Categories: Public Speaking

From our SAA, Lance:

Slowing down and observing the “less is more” rule of thumb is something I’m constantly struggling with in my speaking. In this Forbes article by Nick Morgan, he does a great job (in very few words, I might add) of touching on the basics and then introducing the concept of making an emotional connection with your audience.

September 17 – Back to School

Written September 30th, 2013
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Speech Contest

John Table TopicsToastmaster Laura got us all thinking about the excitement of going back to school. What were the best memories?  New shoes…!

With her ice breaker “In Any 24 Hours, I Raise Money, Dogs, and Flowers” Brigid shared her passions of professionally raising money, enjoying her dogs and learning to garden in the Pacific Northwest.

Emily, doing speech #5 asks the question, “What the Heck is Arbejdsglaede?!”  Look it up!  No, just kidding.  Emily described the Scandinavian word that translates to happiness at work, and how everyone can take small steps to make their workplace a bit more enjoyable.

For speech #3 from the ACS Manual Special Occasions, Mastering the Toast, Mark gave the toast he recently gave as Father of the Groom.  He related a story to make his point “this too shall pass.” What??!  But it worked, and it was touching – you should have been there!

Table topics master Lisa had the ‘volunteers’ talking about various back to school memories (new shoes among them.  Really.)  Even one of our brave guests contributed!

Come find out what an Area Humorous Speech and Table Topics Contest is all about.  Instead of our regular meeting on October 1st, we will be heading down to the ERAC building, 15675 Ambaum Boulevard SW in Burien.  Details at

See you there!

John amazes us with his table topic talk

September 3rd – And The Winners Are…

Written September 11th, 2013
Categories: Public Speaking, Special Events, Speech Contest


With guidance from our very able toastmaster Sherry, we had a great time at the Humorous Speech and Table Topics Contest.  Thanks to our brave and funny contestants Lisa, Franni, Emily, Phil, Bruce and Don!

We laughed, we cried, we laughed some more.

Thanks to all for filling roles, attending, and making it a great night.

And the winners are:  Don for his Humorous Speech and Emily in Table Topics.  Congratulations to you both!


Our winners, Don and Emily.

August 20th – Magic

Written August 29th, 2013
Categories: Meetings, Public Speaking, Toastmasters International

New inducteesToastmaster Valorie brought magic to our evening, swinging her magic wand.  Here’s what she wrought:

In “Bravery is in the Eye of the Beholder,” Amie spoke about one of the things she does that others regard as bravery.  In turn, she got our hands up and waving as she toasted three women that are truly brave.

For his second speech, “No Matter What We Are Never Going Back,” Thomas spoke about the level of anxiety everyone feels about the economy and the recovery. He presented economic indicators (men’s underwear?) and a historical context to the economic cycle.


Lisa J. with “Just do it and magic will happen,” described all of the great benefits you can get from volunteering. She referenced the animal rescue group that she volunteers with, and all of the opportunities available.

To round out the magic, three new members were inducted into our club.  Are you next?  Come find your own magic!

Happy New Inductees

Podcast interview with Dr. Andrew Hill

Written August 22nd, 2013
Categories: Public Speaking

From our SAA, Lance:

I recently stumbled across this podcast of an interview with Dr. Andrew Hill, a neuroscientist who talks about ideas for controlling our brains and actions to help overcome stage fright in public speaking.  It gets into territory that some people may find a little “out there” (neuroscience, biofeedback, mindfulness and whatnot…), but I found it very informative and consistent with experiences I’ve had when speaking. I’ll be using some of what I learned from listening to the interview in my next presentation, and I highly recommend it to anyone who struggles with public speaking jitters.

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