We were back last night after our Thanksgiving hiatus, excited to be online and on our game, so to speak. The accomplished Armando Yee was our Toastmaster and after a joke by Shar McBee about the fine print we never read and a Nicholas Sparks, Thought for the Day from President Len, he introduced our functionaries. The group included first-time Ah Counter, Evan Pawelk and first-time Grammarian Maryam Ashouri. Both did a great job proving there is no great disparity between veteran and newcomer when one applies oneself to the task at hand.
Speaking of newcomers, our first speaker was Jaclyn Lineback who gave a terrific Ice Breaker speech which detailed her life’s journey on the road to becoming an entrepreneur. The trip included evenings by the fire with the family playing CashFlow 101, trying to sell off the household cleaning equipment and an actual family road trip to the Berkshire Hathaway stockholders meeting to hear a message from the Oracle of Omaha. With a background like that, I think we all agree, she’s predestined for great success.
Blake Samuelle was up next and she gave a speech which was a great lesson in generational definitions listing them all including a little-known category called Xennials. This group is described as having had an analog childhood and digital adulthood. Fascinating stuff which had the group talking about the good ol’ days when everybody was watching 21 Jump Street and playing Nintendo.
Speeches were followed by insightful and supportive evaluations by Li Xin and Lauren Clayton then, it was time for Table Topics!
Our Table Topics Master last night was Laila Aitken and she a great job in her very first appearance as TTM. Her questions were of a personal nature and, as one might expect, we learned a few things.
Evan Pawelk – If Evan got a million dollars, tax-free, he would invest it (not surprising for a financial advisor) and turn it into 6 million in 10 years while spending his free time surfing. Not a bad return (and lifestyle) and, also, a nice plug for his financial expertise.
Lauren Clayton – If you happen to be visiting Lauren’s place and are looking for the mustard in her refrigerator, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. It will be filed under “M” next to the mayonnaise because that’s just one of Lauren’s weird little habits.
Jaclyn Lineback – Given the choice between chocolate and TV, Jaclyn would choose television. I agree. Can you imagine a world in the midst of a pandemic without Netflix, Amazon Prime, Apple TV and Hulu?
Rafael Mastro – If Rafael had to live this week over he would renew his pledge to do so without TV as he tried and failed to do this week. Maybe, Rafael should take up eating chocolate since that seems to be the popular alternative (see item above).
Steve Evans (yes, I got a question last night) – Who’s head would I like to peer into if given the chance? My answer was Barack Obama but given that’s highly unlikely, I’ll settle for a book by the former president about public speaking. He’s the best.
Len Kung – There she was, driving down the 10, minding her own business when, all of a sudden, she saw 4 mysterious lights in the night sky. Was it a UFO full of alien beings from outer space? Well, no. Turns out, it was the Goodyear blimp. What a disappointment. Len still believes in the possibility of alien life and took the whole otherworldly experience to be a sign from above to have her tires rotated.
Karan Bavandi – Karan was asked to describe himself in 3 words. He chose curious, daring and spiritual which I think is a great description. It’s not easy. Give it a try. Try to come up with your 3 words. Let’s see, my words could be…handsome…intelligent…and…delusional.
All in all, it was great to be back in the virtual conference room this week after the break, and now, news about the weekend: I’ll be part of an online Toastmasters panel discussion this Saturday from 12:00 to 1:30. The panel is entitled “Leadership 2021. Discover the Leader Within You”. It’s your chance to find out about leadership opportunities at the District level. It’s free and you can find out more and register right here.
- Toastmaster – Sam Nazarian
- Table Topics Master – Maryam Ashouri
- Speaker #1 – Rafael Macho
- Speaker #2 – Karan Bavandi
- Chief Evaluator – Steve Evans
- Evaluator #1 – Evan Pawelk
- Evaluator #2 – Jaclyn Lineback
- Timer – TBD
- Grammarian – Evan Pawelk
- Ah Counter – Armando Yee
- Thought for the Day – Karan Bavandi and/or Laila Aitken
- Joke Master – Jaclyn Lineback