Myths meeting 29/9/17

Posted by on Oct 11, 2017 in Meetings

Boaters meeting 29/9/17: the theme was “Myths” (symbolic story telling)

Sergeant at Arms Rebecca Clements made a fine start to the meeting.

Area Director Brian Preddy and 2 visitors were present and 24 members.

Toastmaster – Alana Bogart ran the meeting with her theme of myths; only cats figured, go figure!

Grammarian was Caleb Vercoe – Grammar myth “Can I start a sentence with a conjunction? “ He was bought up saying ‘no’, but in fact it can – it’s just a matter of preference – e.g. we can start with a ‘but’ or ‘because’ (which was the Word of the Day).

Greg McGeorge humorously introduced Mark Glanville whose speech, “Thrown in the Deep End” was about how one reacts when asked to be a celebrant at a funeral. It’s an honourable humbling experience but needs to be done well with respect. Think about the Eulogy, use of music, audio visual presentation, who wishes to speak (avoiding repetition), use of haka, a guard of Honour, as well as your own words. Script the funeral, check it out with the family and liaise with the funeral director. If you are in doubt about your ability to do it then get a professional celebrant in to take your place.

Sabine Parry introduced Brett Snow with his advanced manual speech “Enjoy the Journey”. He started with a “bang!” Happiness in life is about enjoying the journey. Hence choice of a family vehicle is most important. It’s got to be dilapidated (to avoid theft) but utilitarian enough in his case to ensure a family of 10 was catered for. It was a van ‘with an open door policy’ – you never know when it will open. The solution to this was ingenious – a high tech rope solution. The ground visibility (through the floor) was another feature that added to the family’s experience.

Alan Calder introduced David Pottinger speech “Tasman Series Memoirs 1968-1971”. He covered his father, Bill’s, participation in photographing the motor racing series. It was a pictorial presentation starting with his grandmother’s Austin 10. There were great shots of the races reflecting a simpler time before health & safety interfered. His was a photography hobby saw his photographs go worldwide, especially photographs of the racing and its celebrities, eg. Jacky Stewart and Graham Hill. Those photos ended up in a book that Bill had published, a lasting memento of this time.

Brent’s Presidents notices covered Sandra Chatterton’s experience at the recent leaders meeting and some house-keeping matters. Competent Communicator award certificates were given to Sabine Parry and Mark Glanville to mark their first major achievement in Toastmasters.

Table Topics were lead by Rodney Ford. Negotiating to keep NZ Great again, what’s your bottom line for the negotiation? Alannah Vickery – said ban plastic bags. Clare Ruru – bring back honesty and no back biting in Parliament. Courtney Tibbots – make politics fun by having compulsory comedy sessions once a month. Brian Preddy immigration – shut the door for 2 years because it’s a fragile country. Mo Yakubu – incentives to bring in electric cars to avoid pollution. David Clarkson would legislate for a smile to be compulsory nationwide first thing every morning.

Evaluators were Sandra Chatterton, Vijay Vellaisamy, Brent Ruru and Grant Beattie; the time keeper was Helen McLeod; and the meeting was evaluated overall by General Evaluator, Natalie Perzylo.

The Toastie Award for the meeting went Rebecca Clements and Clare Ruru for organizing the Sgt at Arms role so effectively.

A great fun filled, entertaining and informative meeting well lead by Alana Bogart.

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Meeting # 887: Theme – Your Vote Counts

Posted by on Sep 11, 2017 in Meetings

Being evacuated during the table topics session because a croissant was stuck in a toaster next door in the restaurant causing the smoke detectors to flare up, didn’t deter Boaters Toastmasters today.  Such impromptu disruption had the session continue out in the venue car park as we are both a resilient and adaptable bunch.  Even with the echo of sirens, a flashing fire engine and men and women in uniform going about their business.

Speaker 1 John McVicar and ‘Don’t Let Them Do This to You’ persuasive words of wisdom came with skeletal images of spines both vertical and horizontal cross sectioned (how they do that was fascinating – still aren’t any the wiser).  There was a spine with a plate and screws and the same spine with another plate and screws only to learn, the surgery to fix leg pain wasn’t necessary!  Two bits of advice, stay active as you de-generate into old age and secondly, ‘don’t let them do what they did to you.’  John is happy to provide you the lay persons meaning to ‘spondylolisthesis.’

Speaker 2 Terelle Hegarty and ‘Diminish Dirt & Magnify the Magic.’  We learnt that we work approx., 92,000 hours over our lifetime which explains why a number of you are grumpy.  However, if we change our perspective to embrace it as being an opportunity and a means to ‘give’ to other people, imagine how those hours will fly by.  The key is to always find magic in your hours and magnify them versus dishing out dirt on behaviours of our fellow workers during the hours.  Gossiping is not included except if you are the dirt’s originator!  A congrats to Terelle as this was her 10th CC speech making her competent.  Yay.

Speaker 3 Vivien Cowey and ‘My Time Here is Done.’  If you want to enact revenge on any person who caused you grief during your time here in this life, the best time is between you passing and before you are either buried or cremated!  Vivien shared instances how her ‘mother’ did exactly that after her passing.  That and announcing that Vivien has 101 ways to kill a cat as they weren’t immune to being revenged upon neither.  This humorous speech had some serious messages – I’m going to need 21 days or so after I pass and before I’m cremated!

Toastmaster of the Day Alannah Vickery brought the meeting to an end with the audience voting on who the best speaker was.  It fitted in with her theme that our votes count and the supportive history of how voting plays a significant part in democracy; and that it is a personal choice we shouldn’t ignore by not raising the hand when we are asked to.

I voted for VJ but he wasn’t even on the ballot paper.

It was a ‘savvy’ meeting, that being our Grammarian Jenne’s word of the day.

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Meeting 885 – Daffodil Day

Posted by on Aug 28, 2017 in Meetings

Mark Glanville ran an informative meeting today on the history and meaning of the daffodil. Brent Ruru as Grammarian, chose a variation in the theme of the day and talked about Daffy Duck and challenged us to use the cartoon character in our speaking.

Our first prepared speaker Grant Beattie and his speech: New Life Balance was an entertaining insight into the transition to parenthood with the arrival of Henrietta on the scene and concluding with the phrase “being a parent has been the best thing ever”.

Speaker 2, Kristy Lawler; “Magical Garden” was a trip down memory lane for her back to her childhood visiting the magical garden of her paternal grandparents and the beautiful sights and smells she recalled, and where she always left there with the gift of flowers.

Denise Ford was our third speaker and her speech “Love to Bike (mostly)” was an excellent and amusing recount of good, bad and ugly aspects of biking to work.

Our table topics master, Helen McLeod, didn’t have a lot to say today.

Her selected guests did – namely;

– David Cooper on the silver fern as our national flower
– John McVicar on narcissistic Donald Trump
– Barbara Millar on medical marijuana
– Guest Lloyd on what type of wig would you wear if you had chemotherapy.

Finally, the late Danny De Hek gave plenty of entertaining feedback to various people.

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Excellent Educationals coming soon!

Posted by on Aug 7, 2017 in Meetings

Don’t miss the chance to improve your skills in Evaluation and Mentoring when two of our most experienced members provide educational speeches on these topics:

  • 28 July:  Effective Evaluation with Brett Snow
  • 4 August:  Mentoring Skills with Roydon Gibbs

Whether you are a mentor or a mentee (I’m not sure that’s a real word), Roydon will give good advice about how to get the best out of the relationship.

I am reading a book called “Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well (Even when it’s Off-base, Unfair, Poorly-Delivered, & Frankly, You’re Not in the Mood)”. It’s a good book, but one that my fellow Boaters will never need to read after hearing Brett’s Effective Evaluation educational because all our feedback will be perspicacious, efficacious and superbly delivered.

Not to mention that there will be muffins on 4 August ….

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Meeting 881

Posted by on Aug 4, 2017 in Meetings

Vijay opened the meeting at 7am, his first time in this role, Sergeant of Arms. He grabbed the bull by the horns and wrestled his way through, achieving all the necessary requirements of the role then tossed the meeting over to the Toastmaster of the Day, Alan Calder.


Alan introduced the theme for the day as “Marathon” giving us amazing stats on people who had run the most marathons. One being 280 marathons run in one year by one person. Alan tied this theme to the fact that todays meeting was a “Speech Marathon” of 5 speeches instead of the usual 3 speeches for a typical meeting.


Speaker 1 Courtney Tibbotts, – Speech Titled “Castle Street to Crumpets”  This was Courtney’s first 5-7min speech at Toastmasters, we call it an icebreaker speech. She took us from her conception in Castle Street to her current position marketing Crumpets for the Button family business. The neat thing about Courtney’s presentation was she had crumpet packages for everyone at the end.


Speaker 2 Dion Ebraham – Speech Titled “Fate, Chance, Destiny” Dion also was giving an icebreaker speech. He told us of his origins in Zimbabwe, born in the year of independence. Dion had 2 memorable statements worth quoting. 1.  “In Zimbabwe you always had to have a plan B.”  2. “since marrying a kiwi girl he is now fully kiwi owned and operated” . He described throughout his talk how sports had been his Fate, his chance and his destiny now working for Canterbury Cricket.


Speaker 3 Natalie Perzylo – Speech Titled “What is Old?” Natalie challenged our preconceptions about being old, by explaining her experience, being entrusted with an “Old dog”  called Jack, with various aliments including cataracts. How she at first, she treated him with kid gloves, because he was considered old and frail. But then discovered, that he was fine with the other dogs, doing all the things the other dogs did. We were challenged to review our perception, that because people are old, that they can’t do stuff. In the middle of this she added stories of old people she had met that had defied expectations of what old people where capable of. Highly amazing stories.


Speaker 4 Danny De Hek – Speech Titled – “The truth about business networking” This 10min presentation can be viewed in full on Elite 6 Business Networking Facebook page. Danny gave us 5 tips about Networking that he has found by experience. This speech was followed by a question and answer time with questions from the audience.


Speaker 5 Brett Snow – Speech Titled – “There is no failure, only Feedback” This was a12-14min educational talk on how to be an effective speech evaluator. Brent gave us 4 secrets to making our evaluations more powerful in our public and our private life. His example How to respond to your spouse saying “how do I look?” This was the most interesting educational speech I have heard in toastmasters.


Great Evaluations were then given to all speakers by Mark Granville, Brent Ruru, Rodney Ford, Anton McMulkin and Helen McCloud. Time keeping report by Denise Ford.


“The Toastie Award” was split between our 2 icebreaker speeches, Courtney receiving the Toastie, and Dion being awarded a packet of Buttons Crumpets.


Next week we are looking forward to an amazing speech from Roydon Gibbs on how to be a good mentor. Come and join us!

David Cooper

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Meeting #878 Theme “Slogans

Posted by on Jul 10, 2017 in Meetings

Toastmaster Caleb Vercoe

Caleb proved to us all that we must very good listeners as most of us at todays meeting knew all the marketing slogans he tested us on. So back to the TV ads for me!

Dion Ebrahim our Grammarian for the meeting

Dion started his role by telling us he would be assessing our actual grammar through the meeting and to report who was using slogans. A bit of a challenge in this case as even though we were great at the test of Slogans, not so good at actually using them. Our grammar was in question as well but over all a good report and a very thorough one at that. Well done Dion.


Alan Calder
Turn back time

Alan talked about accidents and injuries while doing recreational sports. while Alan has had injuries he focused on his wifes repeated injuries including a broken leg. Moral of the story try and learn from our mistakes and try to avoid the same things and as we get older it becomes more difficult to recover. Stay Smart, Alert, and prepared.

Brent Ruru
Dream Design Do

Brent told us to have a plan or you will find yourself fiting into somebody elses plan. Brent gave us some ideas to inspire Dreaming, writing lists of what matters most, what makes you happy, what you do everyday. Put together experience boards of photos to remind you of whats been achieved.
When making big plans try the analogy of when painting a big fence that looks overwhelming just look at painting a few palings at a time. Then brent told us a story about their travels biking across Canada even though Bears live there and love bikes too. Follow your dreams.

David Clarkson
Over the horizon

We were treated to a great story with photos of his recent trip through Europe This was very inspirational in it self. We all felt like we were there with David and his wife. Amazing pictures David.

Table topics

Helen McLeod did not disappoint with the fun part of the meeting. Helen used Table conversation cards. Each card has a question to be read out and discussed, although catching a couple out. All the table topics speeches were well put together as mini speeches and entertained.

We had some great evaluations this week, although some common themes came through. Simple things. Remember to speak up, look around and keep to time above all enjoy!
Time for a ………?? “world famous in New Zealand”

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Winter Surprises

Posted by on Jun 12, 2017 in Meetings

The meeting started out with Brent Ruru wearing a Santa’s Hat. That was very appropriate because it almost feels close to a North American’s Christmas. Caleb Vercoe, our Toastmaster, tied it together with the theme of Winter Surprises. Has it really been 5 years since the last great snow in Christchurch? Caleb reminded us why we should look forward to winter- snow, new lambs, and cold frosty crispy mornings… Can I push the FAST forward button, and stop at summer?

Sustainable was the word of the meeting- best practice for/ in the environment. Alannah Vickery, our grammarian, told us about the 3 pillars of being sustainable 1) environmental, 2) economical, 3) social well being. She wondered though, shouldn’t sustainable also include ‘giving back to the land’. I think it should. Do you?

Speech 1
Helen McLeod introduced Sandra Chatterton’s Winter Garden’s Speech. Helen cleverly got our attention by mentionning George Clooney in the same sentence as garden.

What does George Clooney have to do with gardening? George is the name of Sandra’s dog, and Clooney’s wife is into gardening.Hope I got that right…

Hope I got that right…

Sandra gave a brief introduction into her garden. She divided her garden into rooms. I thought this very clever but later learned that it is a gardening term. Sandra gave a vivid picture of her many ‘rooms’. In her rose garden, she has Dog Wood. No it’s not a wooden dog. That’s how much I know about flowers and garden. It’s a name of a tree that has brilliant red leaves. Her middle room has cherry trees and a BBQ and the back room is where her vege garden does all the work to feed her family.

Sandra left us with some reminders for us:

  • Sharpen your tools
  • Start planting your winter garden
  • Dig over the crops, keep your garden sustainable
  • Plant roses, perennials and don’t forget to prune your roses.

David Cooper evaluated Sandra’s speech and commended her on great use of visual words, using the rooms to help us guide our mind, and giving us a ‘job tip’. Some suggestions for her — make as if you are talking to someone in the back room to raise the volume of your voice, and bring some photos of your garden!

Speech 2
Louise Green introduced Brent Snow and told the audience that he’s been travelling up north visiting family in Keri Keri. They have a farm and snuck in the word of the day… are they farming sustainably?
Brent’s non manual speech was titled Power Listening. He went through the 4 types of listening:

  1. Cosmetic– blah, blah blah, and not really paying attention to the speaker. (We don’t do that at Toastmasters!) He got a chuckle from the audience when he said that he put the phone down while his sister was talking, thinking he had enough time to make a coffee. He got caught!
  2. Conversational—general talking with general interruption. Listen-talk-think
  3. Active- more effort in put into listening & the process. You want clarification, and you summarise what the speaker has said. This blog made me listen actively this morning, that’s for sure!
  4. Deep- those conversations that you have that are rare in your life (well, mine at least) – where you feel a connection with the other person, and you almost finish their sentence. You are quite clearly on the same wavelength. Super natural…
    Brent challenged us to ask open-ended questions, to listen and response and to ask yourself if the speaker is using visual, auditory or kinaesthetic when they talk. Reflect this in your own speaking.
    Alan Calder evaluated Brent’s speech and wondered if Brent could have use ‘the challenge’ throughout his speech. Alan liked his delivery, and commented that the opening and the closing reflected each other. Well done.

Speech 3
Rodney introduced Alana Bogart and was looking forward to her speech. He told us that it was a humourist speech and it just fitted nicely between 5 to 7 minutes!Alana certainly brought humour to our morning. She talked about supermarket shopping which we can all relate to. More than that, she made herself to

Alana certainly brought humour to our morning. She talked about supermarket shopping which we can all relate to. More than that, she made herself to topic of humour. You certainly can’t offend anyone then!

“I am one of those” she repeated throughout her speech—from the person who bangs into person with the trolley, “I am one of those” , to the person that makes the mountain of fruit fall on the floor, “I am one of those”, to fondling soap and doing the sniffer test with laundry soap. And of course, who doesn’t know the experience of waiting in a queue to finalise your shopping (“I am one of those” ) ONLY for the person behind the trolley to run out to get the last minute items- like… the diarrhoea tablets.
Royden Gibbs had the hard task of evaluating her speech because she did such a great, entertaining speech. One thing that he did suggest was to watch for rhythm & pace. Use the Pause Effect. The difference between the gap (like gasping) vs the deliberate action (stop and hold)

Table Topics
Claire Ruru used the Winter Surprises theme to create a murdered Santa Scene… Who, what and how did Santa get knocked over? Six people had to convince us why they were innocent of the crime while at the same time pointing the finger at someone else. That was a great table topic. I loved participating as did Veeja, Courtney, Greg and one of 4 of our guest (sorry, didn’t catch your name).

The Toasty Award went to Alana Bogart with her supermarket speech “I am one of those”
Congrats Alana !! ending this tale of our morning of June 9 2017 on a high note!

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