Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Toastmasters - Men And Their Sheds

My second Toastmasters speech objective was 'Organize your speech'. This related to having a strong beginning, interesting middle and strong ending.

I wanted to choose a topic that was totally wacky and interesting for both the men and the women, of all ages, in the group. My aim was to make people think 'out of the box'.

Here's my speech number 2:



My husband just despairs with me! Generally, it’s when he’s waiting outside a charity shop as I squirrel away looking for that elusive find, that lost treasure.

And then I find it, something that will change my life. I rush outside to show him, I’m so excited – and his face just drops…… (hold up book)

"Men and Sheds"

Now let me justify myself.

I don’t consider interior design to be restricted to houses – you can have glamorous gazebos, hedonistic halls and super sheds as these men will back me up.

Firstly there are the social butterflies that love having their mates over. I’m sure you can hazard a guess as to how their shed is decorated. Yes, with a bar and full working optics. They also have a sofa to lounge on, or a reclining chair, and some even have a cinema screen and invite the old ladies of the village over for a film show! Very stylish!!

Then there are those that cover their walls with fur and animal prints – and I’m not talking the dead kind. There’s a chap who’s shed is stuffed with live animals such as a tarantula, Burmese python and venomous cobras. I must say, not my kind of interior design!

Finally, there are those that just potter and tinker – they love to make things. Maybe they’d present you with a bench carved out of a single tree trunk, or show you their train track that runs around the shed – fantastic - imagine that in a children’s playroom.

But then there’s Brian.

He was a bricklayer who had a terrible accident with an angle grinder and his right hand. He then got ‘Viking disease’ in his left hand that clawed up.

The hospital gave him devices to straighten out his hand but they were pretty useless. So he spent many an hour in his shed and finally constructed a device that is now internationally recognised in the medical profession. That's not regionally or nationally ...but internationally recognised. Absolutely amazing.

So, next time you go past a shed and hear an almighty clatter just think:

…it could be someone who’s just fallen off his chair drunk as a skunk,

….or maybe it’s someone being strangled by a boa constrictor

…..but then again, he could just be pottering and tinkering to create the next medical marvel.

Once again this speech was well received, as you can see from the comments following, but the only thing I would change is the bit about Brian because I think he needed his own separate speech.

"Great choice of topic - very much relevant to your audience."

"What great word pictures and imagery. Loved the wrap up."

"You can see the creative side of you coming out."

"You have so much enthusiasm for everything you approach."

"A great unique speech topic - loved it. Great structure and confident delivery. Kept me hooked all the way."

"Entertaining from start to finish. Innovation in garden sheds!! You managed to convey a whole world of interiors."

"Super - you were absolutely compelling."

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