The night was kick-started by none other than our Toastmaster of the Evening, the exquisite TM Ahmad Faiz Zailani. He warmly greeted everyone and shared his Thought of the Evening, ‘In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity’.
Each role player was introduced. First up was TM Heidi Rahman as our Table Topics Master, with her prepared theme ‘Discovering Yourself’. The purpose of the Table Topics is to help selected/willing speakers develop their ability to organise their thoughts quickly and to respond to an impromptu question or topic.
Our next role player was our cheeky Rano Iskandar, CC, CL as our Table Topics Evaluator, where he focused and provided suggestions for improvements to the Table Topics speakers’ use of English and use of body language.
TM Haryati Abdul Gafur, a first time Grammarian, introduced everyone the Word of the Evening, ‘SCINTILLATING’ (sin-tl-ey-ting). It means 1. Animated, vivacious, effervescent (e.g. The TME has a scintillating personality); 2. Witty, brilliantly clever (e.g. It is interesting to listen to him talk since he is a scintillating conversationalist). Other derived forms are ‘scintillate’ and ‘scintillatingly’. TM Haryati focused on the use of allusion in every speaker’s rhetorical device. Allusion is a reference to a place, person or an event. Some examples are ‘Take his parking spot, it will be another World War 2 all over again!’ or ‘After she lost her job, she becomes a Scrooge. She refuses to buy anything.’
Taking the role of Ah Counter and ‘Who said what’ for the night was TM Jidun Dollah, keeping his watchful eyes on every speaker for any overused words or filler sounds used as crutches or any inappropriate interjections, such as ‘and’, ‘well’, and ‘so’. He was also leading the ‘Who said what’ session during which every audience participated and brushed up their listening skills.
Timer and Tip for the night was the big bang full of energy and surprises, the Wonder Woman of the night, TM Rahmat Tarsat. Her responsibility was to monitor the time for each segment and each speaker. Her unforgettable tip was ‘To Pose for Power’ and she explained that Power Pose helps to decrease hormone anxiety and also boosts up confidence level.
Newly recruited member TM Futoshi Tono’s CC1 prepared speech was on his ‘Self-Introduction’. The two main things he shared was a short story about his life and his favourite things. He originated from a town called Hiroshima, Japan – famous for being attacked by atomic bombs back during World War 2. From an indestructible boy who survived from getting hit by a bus to a singer in a boy band during high school, he has become a knowledgeable engineer who has worked in Japan, Brunei, the Philippines and Pakistan over the last few decades. He enthusiastically loves watching movies, learning different cultures from various countries (even though he is terrified of long haul flights) and playing tennis, during which he would passionately concentrate on his posture to hit the ball in the tennis court. He also has another new found favourite thing to do, Toastmasters, where he follows his heart and will eventually speak more naturally.
The second speaker for the prepared speeches was TM Kelvin Lai, attempting his Competent Communication Project 7: Research Your Topic entitled ‘One or Two Marshmallows?’. He shared about his research on Walter Mischel’s Stanford marshmallow experiment, where the purpose of the experiment is to understand when the control of deferred gratification – the ability to wait to obtain something that one wants – develops in children. Over 600 four-year-old children took part in the experiment, where each child had to stay in a room, with a chair to sit on and a single marshmallow on a plate, on a table next to the child. If the child waited for the scientist to come back without consuming the marshmallow, the child would be rewarded with two marshmallows altogether. The catch was that the child did not know exactly how long to wait (they had to wait for 15 minutes). While waiting, one-third of the children immediately ate the marshmallow, another one-third waited 1 minute to 14 minutes and 30 seconds whereas the remaining children waited until the scientist came back. The takers who could not wait for the scientist only had one marshmallow (which represented immediate reward) whereas the waiters who did had two instead of one in the end (which represented long-term reward). TM Kelvin Lai wrapped up his speech with a strong message, ‘Self-control is crucial for the successful pursuit of long terms goals’.
Last but not least, the President of The Brunei Speaker’s Club, Chris Woo, CC was doing his ACB5 Project: The Oratorical Speech under the Interpretive Reading Manual entitled ‘The Importance of Imagination by J.K. Rowling.’ His objectives are to understand the structure of an effective speech and to interpret a famous speech. He had excellently interpreted J.K Rowling’s commencement speech for Harvard University. An unforgettable message that can be picked out from this speech was ‘As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.’
The next segment of the meeting was led by TM Heidi Rahman, armed with prepared questions to selected or willing speakers for the Table Topic session. She explained that the questions were meant for getting to know the speaker better, including the speaker himself or herself.
The first impromptu speaker was DTM Geneviève Lai, taking on ‘How would you describe yourself in 5 words?’. She enthusiastically answered that she is talkative, helpful, loves to learn, mischievous and has a massive obsession with cheese!
TM Aziman Nasir shared with everyone that if he had all the money in the world and does not need to work, he would establish his own bank called Aziman Banking, start up his own Aziman’s Toastmaster Club, and bought Chris Woo, CC to lure potential members into his club. But the most important thing if he is filthy rich is that he will always want to be surrounded by and share his wealth with his friends, family and Jordan Yau, CL as his Player 2 in video gaming.
‘What makes your smile?’ was the question posed to Miss Syatrah, a regular guest in Brunei Speaker’s Club. She described that she has two types of smiles – the awkward cringe worthy smile and the nice kind of smile she has whenever she thinks of food.
Reuben Chin, ACS, ALB was asked,‘If you can ask a single person and get an answer properly, who and what will you ask?’ He took his time to fiddle-faddle for a while until he strongly ended his speech by saying ‘If there is that one single person that I can rely on a proper answer, ‘Mum, How am I doing?’’
‘If you are 90 years old, what matters most in the world?’. TM Maudena shared how her grandmother might be feeling right now and how she herself might feel the same when she is 90. She would like to ‘see (her) children and grandchildren grow up successful and see that they can look after themselves before she dies’.
The best Table Topic speaker for the night was TM Aziman Nasir! Congratulations on his first Table Topic ribbon!
And the best evaluator for the night was TM Pooja Shivanand!
The night was filled with continuous laughter and ecstatic applauses. Other role players who need to be recognised for their heartfelt dedication as evaluators for the night were TM Gerald Goh as the General Evaluator, TM Pooja Shivanand as CC1 Evaluator, Pranika Lama, CC, ALB as CC7 Evaluator and Yani Hepnie, ACB, ALB as the ACB Evaluater.
Thank you everyone for the thrilling, exciting night!
TM Adah Rani
Rano Iskandar, CC, CL