Welcome to the Club

VPM Young Lee inducts Hong Bing Li, Bianca, and Laurie as Phuong, Margaret Farchtchi, and Linda look on

Brinker Toastmasters were excited to welcome Hong Bing Li, Bianca Kemp, and Laurie McCathern as members today.

Our meeting celebrated the cherry blossoms. Though nothing can beat seeing them in person, there are some lovely images at the link in this post from Smithsonian magazine—

At the meeting we  listened to guest Isaac Sogunro rehearse the speech he will deliver at his division contest and to Jim’s story of George Dixon and the loss of the CSS Hunley. Here’s a link to a page at the Friends of the Hunley site where you see an image of the lucky coin that Dixon carried. Corinne made her first appearance as Topic Master and challenged us with some pretty interesting questions—Phuong handled her question about the celebrity she admired most very ably, but I was disappointed. A tweet from Alicia Keys this morning

got me thinking about Howard Schultz (alas, no relation) and how much I admire him. Only one thing wrong with Alicia’s post—she meant to point to @starbucksnews instead of @starbucksnewsroom. If you go there, you can find the ad, including  this quote, that will soon appear in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times as well as video excerpts from the presentation that Howard made at the Starbucks annual meeting calling for “civility and values-based leadership.” I think it’s worth a trip.


Much later in the day I found on Instagram the exact quotation that was recommended to Isaac during our open evaluation of his contest speech—

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