Club Meeting Thursday 11 July 2013

It was a relief to get
out of the heat and step into the cool interior of Old St Paul’s
Church Hall, Edinburgh.

But, there was nothing cool about the welcome from
Waverley’s new Greeter, Declan Colgan,
and this year’s VPM, Aideen O’Malley
who were in position to greet members and guests as soon as they
stepped through the door.

The word of the day was languid
just how some of us were feeling after the unexpected
heatwave.

2-P1050049Not a word that could be
applied to TME, Stephen Dix’s running
of the meeting. With his usual blend of humour and efficiency,
Stephen, with the help of his team of role-players, guided us
through an evening of thought-provoking speeches and hilarious and
challenging Table Topics.

Richard McMahon delivered
the invocation – extracts from Bobby Kennedy’s famous 1966 South
Africa speech.

Alisa Mandrigan, in a CC2
speech, talked about Personal Identity.

Alisa is a philosopher and she really got us thinking
with questions such as, ‘what makes you “you”? ‘Is personal
identity dependent on body continuity?’ She examined
tele-transportation, John Locke’s memory theory of personal
identity, and then ended with a challenge to the audience – to
consider what makes us who we
are.

Alex Nuth, also
delivering a CC2 speech, explored Non-Violent
Communication.

In a speech about the power of words, Alex opened with
Marshall Rosenberg’s intriguing and perhaps controversial theory
that compliments are alienating – ‘they are,’ he said, ‘a
moralistic judgement.’

Alex went on to consider some of Rosenberg’s theories
of non-violent communication, which is founded on language and
communication skills, a subject particularly apt for a Toastmasters
audience.

Duncan Thompson, in a CC7
speech, considered whether Human Genetic Engineering
was taking power of choice too far.

‘If we continue as we are, ‘man will be man-made’,
said Duncan. He ended his speech with the warning that if we
continue down the road of HGE, ‘you may live a healthy life, but
you may have to fight for survival.’

The three evaluators – Paul Bailey,
Graeme Buck and Kevin Miller –
had their work cut
out evaluating such accomplished speeches but, as experienced
evaluators, they each gave valuable commendations and suggestions
for improvement.

Table Topics were different, challenging, and great
fun. I know, I was first up along with James
Davidson.

Amanda Jane (AJ) Cullen
was the TTM. She called members to the floor in pairs and gave them
a topic. Working together, the narrator had to describe the scene;
the other acted out the story.

James and I had to ‘bake a cake under the
sea’.

2-P1050036Kevin Lee and
Patrick Hughes
(guest) demonstrated ‘how to shave
your legs on the moon’.

3-P1050040Brian Duffy
and Kylie
(guest) taught us ‘how to dance to impress
your date’.

1-P1050046Declan Colgan
and Rona Doig
(Waverley’s newest member delivering
her first Table Topic) galloped their way through ‘how to ride a
unicorn’ to win a ribbon each for best Table
Topic.

Pauline Dix had the
daunting task of evaluating two TT’s at the same time for each pair
and managed to give commendations and recommendations for
everyone.

1-P1050034Kevin
Miller
, Waverley Communicators’ new President for
2013/2014 gave a brief club business session.

He began by thanking Brian Duffy, Immediate Past
President, and the committee of 2012/2013 for their hard work
during the last year and for guiding the club to achieve the
highest award in the Distinguished Club Programme – President’s
Distinguished.

Kevin also reminded members and guests that, because
Old St Paul’s is a Festival venue, the next three club
meetings on 25th July, 8th August and 22nd August would be held in
Jury’s Inn,
just along the road from Old St
Paul’s.

Ritchie Brown,
General Evaluator, evaluated the whole meeting.

Post written by Moira Beaton DTM,
VPPR

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