Amish Implements

What can be learned from adversity? How to think like a champion! The history of the mobile phone. Motivating people through an evaluation and Amish implements were the lessons of the event held on Monday, 28 September.

Three superb prepared speeches from three different Toastmasters Advanced Speaking Manuals provided the basis for an enjoyable Chamuevening. Chamu shared his personal experiences as an engineering student on one of our mines in the dark past of our country, but did a wonderful job of twisting the indignities meted out on him into advantages that served him going forward. Njabulo went all out to inspire us to accept that we are champions. He recited the speech given by Mohammed Ali at the weigh in before the “rumble in the jungle” with such authenticity one could imagine Ali himself in the room. John-Peter shared the development of communication from the time when a call from a payphone once a month would suffice to the introduction of the big “brick” Njabulomobile phone through to the smart phone where we are communicating with someone almost every minute of the day, whether on a chat service or social media.

First-time Table Topics Master, Tarryn, asked six volunteers to describe the use of an Amish hand implement from a picture. Our male speakers added an element of body-building into the use of the implements they described. I guess Njabulo’s speech had an influence here. Judith described an ice cutter for cutting large block of ice for cold storage which she Table Topics speakers (in order)though ploughed furrows; Keith described a hand drill as a clothes mangle or press; Mary was fairly spot on with a multi-tool; Rick described a hand cranked paper shredder as a spaghetti making tool; Tanye described a pot-pie holder as a picnic basket and finally Zahndri thought a wooden yarn swift would develop muscular arms.

Inducting NjabuloOur Toastmasters of the Evening (the MC), Jason did a fabulous job sharing with us ideas on sustainable living as he led us from one segment of the programme to the next; this being his first time in the role. We inducted Njabulo into our club. The awards of the evening went to Mary as best speech evaluator, Tarryn as best contribution, Tanye as best Table Topic and Njabulo walked off with best speaker and most improved speaker.The awards of the evening (in order)

On Wednesday, 30 September Zahndri represents our club and Area in the Division H Table Topics contest to be held at The Campus in Bryanston at 18h30 (Mandela Room in the Wanderers Building). Everyone is welcome.

Our next club event will take place on Monday, 12 October and all guests are welcome. Just arrive at 18h45 and come and find out what we are all about. We also look forward in anticipation to our annual special event, our Survivor evening on Monday, 26 October. This is an interclub event to find the speaking survivor of the evening in three rounds of impromptu speeches. You may book your seat in advance.

Humorous and Table Topics Contests

Every year each club has the opportunity for one member to compete in the respective Humorous and Table Topics (Impromptu) Area Contests. This usually means that the club holds contests at which as many members as possible are encouraged to enter.

On Monday, 24 August we held our Humorous and Table Topics Club Contests. In both contests the audience of 21 was entertained with excellent speeches.







The winners who will represent the club at the Area Contests are:













In the Humorous Contest: Keith Bowen












In the Table Topics Contest: Zahndri Prinsloo

The Area Contests will be held on 22 September and wish our contestants success and hope they win through to the Division Contests and the District Contests.









Our next meeting in on Monday, 14 September at 18h45 and everyone is more than welcome as a guest at our meeting. We always have excellent speeches and lots of fun.

Saluting our achievers

Toastmasters recognises achievements and as a club we celebrate our achievers. The Toastmasters journey is one from new member to Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM). There are branches that run in parallel to achieving DTM, one is the communication track where after every 10 project speeches the member is recognised with an educational achievement, the other is the leadership track where a specified set of leadership projects qualifies for recognition. Here are some of our achievers of the last few months.






















Celebrating the 700th meeting

On Monday, 17th August we had an evening of new beginnings and reminiscing as we celebrated our 700th meeting. This club was chartered in April 1891 as the Escom Toastmasters Club. We learned that about the time it changed to the Eskom Toastmasters Club the parent company, Eskom, saw Toastmasters as a social organisation and not a learning organisation and stopped supporting the club. The club found new premises. This club was known from its inception as being more casual that was the norm for Toastmasters clubs in the early 1980’s and so the word of the evening for our 700th meeting was chosen to be “irreverent”.

The theme of this 700th meeting was BLACK, WHITE & GOLD with a sub-theme of 007 reversed. The venue was also selected to give us the opportunity to have a good meal and socialise; the Hogshead in Illovo served to host us. Black, white and gold balloons adorned the room and matching napkins served to decorate the centre of the tables. The food was of a high standard and the service impeccable with dinner arriving spot on time. We have several brand new members who celebrated with us, s few guests, who I think we managed to suitably impress and a few visiting Toastmasters as well as a longstanding former member of our club.

The new beginnings came in the form of two Icebreaker Speeches, the first project from the first speaking manual, delivered by brand new members Tarryn and Carolyn. Both young ladies are in Public Relations and would-be authors of fiction. Their speeches were anything by fiction, they were beautifully constructed stories that highlighted a particular aspect of their lives through which we got to know quite a bit about them. An entertaining speech from one of the Advanced Speaking Manuals telling stories of the irreverent acts that occur backstage (and sometimes onstage) at the opera and an educational speech on understanding your speaking environment rounded off the formal segment of the event.

Long-time Toastmasters and club members, Keith and Shaun, shared the history highlights of the club after dinner and as the Table Topics impromptu speeches Mary, custodian of the records of the club, shared some meeting minutes with members who picked out the most surprising items to share. Through this review of our history we see that although some things change, there are issues that never go away, for example the need to change signatories on the bank account.

The Toast of the Evening was to a next 700 meeting and if the banter and fun of this event is anything to go by this club is set for continued success.












Our next meeting on Monday, 24 August is the club’s annual Humorous Speaking and Impromptu Speaking Contests. Everyone is welcome to hear well the prepared speeches, and unprepared speeches, of the contestants hoping to win at our semi-annual conference in East London in the first weekend of October.