What the rainbow was I thinking?

It’s always surprising just how much you can learn at one single Toastmasters evening and tonight was no exception – did you know there’s a new version of Matlab which makes beautiful anti-aliased graphs? Or that rainbow colourmaps often cause confusion and misinterpretation of graphical data, or that the moment when you launch a hang-glider off a cliff you actually shoot up (That is, if you’re doing it the right way!) or that Valentines Day is actually Dave & Ade’s wedding anniversary! Congratulations you two!

Toastmaster Ade lead a superb evening tonight – it was fun, it was informative, it was timely and definitely entertaining. Starting off was our awesome Margie, this time in a grammarian role with the word-of-the-day “curiosity”. By the end of the evening she seemed genuinely impressed with both our use of the word and with the low um & ah counts she’d recorded. Thanks Marg – it’s great to have you back!

Then with a reading from Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina came Ben with the objectives to speak at an appropriate rate and be clearly understood. Ellie told in her evaluation how Ben had “absolutely nailed his objectives” and commended Ben for his choice of reading. Well done Ben!

The first of our two prepared speeches tonight was from David K with the title “Rainbows are evil”. This technical presentation covered some recent advancements to the Matlab software suite as well as a new colourmap called “Parula” and some thorough background as to why Parula is a far more appropriate colourmap than the traditional rainbow! Brilliant! In her evaluation, Jennifer made particular mention of the way David turned what might have been a dry topic into a thoroughly entertaining and interesting speech through the use of humour and carefully crafted language. Congratulations David!

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Our second prepared speech was an ice-breaker from one of our newest Toastmasters, Wayne. “What the hell was I thinking” was a gripping tale of how Wayne began in the sport of hang-gliding! In brilliant detail and with great use of humour, Wayne told us how he began on a faulty glider, gradually building his confidence doing longer and longer flights until his first major flight in the hills behind Waimate. There was ‘lift bands’, ‘stopping positvely’ and some great language such as “the air can’t hurt you, but the hills definitely can!”. Evaluator Chrissy was thrilled with Wayne’s speech, beginning her evaluation with the words “Boy was I flying high”! Thank you Wayne, we can’t wait to hear your next speech!

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Matt ran an incredible Tabletopics session tonight around a theme of witness protection! Apparently the Miami Mafia had spotted our talent on our website and was launching an attack. Members of CCTM had been placed in the TPP – the Toastmasters Protection Program, where people were dropped into new lives for their protection!

Tim became Julia Jensen, a gossip blogger from Long Island, living the high life writing about the rich and their 1st world problems with Range Rovers and the like. Sergie became Becky Burgins, a breakdance teacher who came to the sport after growing up in a family of girls and moving to Mozambique. Becky was forced to learn breakdancing to keep safe on the street! Ellie became Lennie Leonard, operator of the London Eye with capsules which go up and ‘doun’ and Jennifer became Sylvester Sampson of Honolulu who made a living promoting local businesses by yelling out advertising messages while sky-diving over the city! Chrissy became Oliver Olson, a stunt double famous for death-defying hang-glider moves, especially his role in the movie “Wings in heaven”. Marg wrapped it all up as Tara Gold, a hilarious party clown with a pink hat and a green wig that is ‘aaaallllll curly’.

Thanks for another great evening and well done to Sam for his first role as timer tonight!