Happy Chinese New Year! Our committed, dedicated and sanguine TM Macalister Mac (Sergeant-at-arms) began the meeting by welcoming our members and one new guest, Yvonne Lee. TM Rahul Breh took over as the Toastmaster of the Evening and began to introduce the office bearers for this week’s meeting. He began by introducing Farhan Jafar Ali, CC, CL as the Table Topics Master, followed by TM Aziman Nasir as the Table Topics Evaluator.
TM Haryati Abdul Gafur was the grammarian. She introduced the word of the day: Sanguine: which means, cheerfully optimistic, hopeful or confident about the future. An example for the use of the word of the day is ‘Although unemployment is rising, economists have a sanguine view about the country.’ TM Pooja Shivanand was the timer, TM Amran Jamaluddin took the Ah Counter & Who said What role and Geneviève Lai, DTM was our General Evaluator. Pooja’s tip as a timer, is to keep an eye to the timing device and make sure to keep track on time. This is to avoid the risk of having overtime disqualifications for the upcoming speech competitions.
“Start with the heart”, a quote Rahul left for us to ponder, as he shared his thought of the day. We may have the skills, but do we have the right motive when we approach someone?
For the prepared speeches segment we had two speakers: TM Rahmat Tarsat and Jordan Yau, CL. Rahmat Tarsat attempted the CC6 Project speech with the title “Run when you can’t”. Rahmat’s biggest fear at one point was to finish 1km run in less than 8 minutes in a fitness test. It was not about disappointing herself, but her students, if she can’t overcome her un-athletic condition. Action speaks louder than words, thus she wished to prove to her students that she can do it, no matter how hard it is. Rahmat took the challenge and was determined to get an A in that fitness test. She trained herself, jogging and hitting the gym, to build her stamina. However, every time she ran, all the negative mindsets dragged her down. To overcome her self-inflicted negativity Rahmat reminded herself over and over again why was she doing this in the first place? It is for her hardworking students. Rahmat always told her students that studying can be hard, but it is still manageable. So is running, she thought. It is hard; but it’s not impossible. Come the fitness test day, Rahmat ran. 100 meters passed, her legs were about to give up. She did not falter. 6 minutes 43 seconds was the time she took to complete her run. Rahmat did it and made her students proud and believe that it is possible. Rahmat concluded her speech with the advice: With time and effort, we can do better.
Jordan Yau, CL attempted his CC8 Project with the title ‘Eureka!’ Jordan touched on the concept of creativity, using an example of a brick. He asked the audience about the numerous uses of a three-holed reclaimed brick. A house building tool, paper weight, door stopper, came the answers from the floor. Jordan humorously continued with more examples such as a fashion accessory and as an imaginary mobile phone. With these examples, Jordan argued that our creativity is limitless. We are all born with creativity and we can apply it in all sorts of jobs. Children, especially, are the most creative beings in the world. This is due to one element: curiosity. Children see limitless possibilities on any item that they see. They see things as what they COULD be, instead of adults seeing things as what they SHOULD be. ‘EUREKA!’ was the word proclaimed by ancient Greek polymath Archimedes when he discovered the solution to detect fraud in the manufacture of a golden crown. He was too excited as the exact moment he discovered that solution, he ran out naked yelling ‘Eureka! Eureka!’ Jordan explained the message of this story was that we need to be shameless and bold because we don’t want to be blocked by negativity. Creativity is work. It is a process we need to manage. Creativity is also like sports, we need to practice to make it better.
On to the table topics, Farhan Jafar Ali, CC, CL came up with a brilliant theme of ‘Manners’ or making of a gentleman or a lady. We had eight table topics speakers this week.
TM Macalister Mac was given the line, ‘Great men are not born great, they grow great.’ Mac was reminded of the story Mega mind where the story began with being a bad person but then he transitioned to become a hero. The transition from bad to good in the end is what matters.
TM Heidi Rahman ‘Please and Thank you. These are the magic words.’ Heidi noted that these two expressions, will make us melt. She related to her daughter when she speaks those words. Every time her daughter says these words, Heidi melts instantly and feels anything is worth spending for her daughter.
Liyana Sidek, CC was given the topic ‘the best investment you ever make is yourself.’ Growing up, Liyana was a shy person. Therefore she was reluctant to attend family gatherings. She would sit in a corner and not talk to anyone. However, she was forced by her mother to greet their relatives, hello, thank you and eventually opened up Liyana and fostered good manners in her.
Yvonne Lee, our courageous guest, answered the topic ‘Good manners will open doors, where education can’t’. When we need someone else to do something, we need to ask them politely. We rely on them and work together with them. Simple gestures of hello, good morning to everyone can create bonds and cooperation among people.
TM Syatrah was given the topic ‘Make it simple, but significant’. Syatrah, as a PR coordinator, for a few weeks now was given tasks by her General Manager in advertisement for the upcoming national events. Her manager wanted the event poster to be minimalist yet comprehensive for everyone. Hence, simple yet significant.
TM Awfa, answered the topic titled ‘speak only when spoken to’. Awfa believes that we need to speak to be heard; people can know us more even with a simple self-introduction. Doing table topics is one platform where we can speak our mind and get better at impromptu speaking.
Reuben Chin, ACS, ALB was posted the title, ‘Be the type of man you’d want your daughter to marry’. As always, Reuben related this story to his experience, where he had a conversation with his friend about children. Reuben pointed that knowing what he doesn’t like about himself, would help him in understanding what qualities in another person his daughter should avoid.
Our returning member, TM Derby Teo, our final speaker was given the topic ‘The world is full of girls. Be a lady’. Since Derby was little she loved everything that is pink in colour. She wore skirts and dresses, not shorts or pants. However, growing up, she started to wear pants, as it felt more comfortable. People started telling her to be more ladylike, but Derby argued that why can’t we be ourselves? Instead of thinking as the world full of girls and trying to be a lady; Derby said the world is full of humans, so be who you want to be and not what others expect you to be.
For this speech Derby won the TM Derby won the Best Table Topic Ribbon; while, the Best Evaluator Ribbon was awarded to Pranika Lama CC, ALB.
TM Aziman Nasir
Rano Iskandar, CC, CL