Learning New Language

Member blog by Gerald Hartley.

The ‘buzz’ was in the air at meeting #1078, as Toastmaster Jacqui led our ‘Demo Day ‘ with the theme ‘What’s Your Buzz’.

Our Grammarian Max was simply ‘elated’ this week. Not only did he bring along his partner Ashley as a guest, but also shared the news that he’s starting a new internship. Well done Max!
Congrats to Joji for completing his Level 1 Pathway, as he presented a few motivational lines from his Research & Presentation Speech: “If you stay in a place where nothing changes, then you don’t change either… not moving forward is moving backwards”
Helen gave us a very humorous speech, asking the crowd if we were pro or anti profanity. She informed us that the phrase “By God’s Bones” was an incredibly offensive slur in the middle ages, likely rude enough to disqualify you from a Toastmasters contest!
Our Table Topics Master Deb asked for us the “Things that make you Buzz”. Louise has a strict ‘no mimosas’ rule on Sunday mornings (or any day really), Colin’s special ‘age’ occurs every half a decade, our special guest Ashley provided her bucket list of memorable destinations, Gerald… something about Christmas food, and Aaron spoke to his motivations and experiences across his cricketing adventures.
Wonderful insights coming from our evaluators. Cam evaluated Joji’s speech the only way Cam can, commending Joji’s dulcet tones by saying  “you know what they say about those with long vocal cords… deep voices” (I’ll take your word on that one, Cam…)
David Cooper was elated for Helen’s humorous speech, commending her for sharing and informing us of the history of profanity in such a profound way.
Alannah challenged our table topics speakers to employ the “Sweep and Stare” (making eye contact with the crowd), as opposed to the “Dream & Think” (looking off to the distance) when recalling from memory. Challenge accepted Alannah!
Steve kept the ‘good vibes’ going by providing more fantastic recommendations for our presenters this morning.
Another buzzy meeting that was well run and well organised. Well done to all involved!
For my blogger bonus, I’ve been studying up rhetorical devices in prep for our upcoming Evaluation contest. Here’s a few techniques that we’ve all likely used, without knowing the name of them:
[anaphora] – Repetition of a word or expression at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses, sentences, or verses eg. “we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground”
[litotes] – Understatement in which an affirmative is expressed by the negative of the contrary eg. “not a bad speech”
[hyperbaton] – A transposition or inversion of idiomatic word order (ie. Yoda’s favourite) eg. “Judge me by my size, do you?”