Because speakers deal in words, too

This thought comes at the conclusion of Rebecca Solnit’s essay at Harper’s Magazine this month—

As a writer, I’ve been given more and more space to occupy, and my voice reaches further and further. The only justification I can think of for such disproportionate influence is to use it to advocate for others, to invite in those who have been excluded.

These two thoughts reminded me of a third, seen long ago at Brain Pickings

Words are events, they do things, change things. They transform both speaker and hearer; they feed energy back and forth and amplify it. They feed understanding or emotion back and forth and amplify it.

A Handful of Apps to help your Speaking

Fast Company provides an overview of apps that can help you improve your speaking.

Fortunately, technology can help. From too many “ums” to too many butterflies, apps can help you get over these four speaking fears so you can impress your listener.

The areas? Using filler words, nervousness, forgetting what you’re going to say, having too little or too much to say, and English isn’t your first language. Sheez! Next thing you know they’ll be telling us you don’t need Toastmasters any more.

Tepid

In our hotel, I took a shower and saw that on the shower knob, in between Hot and Cold was the word “Tepid,” and that was enough to make me consider emigration. The engineer who designed that knob loved the language. It is the richest language in widespread use today, and “tepid” is a useful and lovely word. An American engineer would regard this as pointless — logic tells you that in between Hot and Cold is something in-between, lukewarm or moderate or room- temperature, lackadaisical, halfhearted, nondescript, whatever — and the use of “tepid” would be effete and elitist and unmanly and cause other engineers to avoid you in the cafeteria. Best to just use H and C. Or a red dot and a blue dot. A country where engineers are fond of language is a country I could be happy in, never mind politics.

Garrison Keillor today’s Washinton Post.

Surely there’s time in our Word of the Day session or our Grammarian’s report to take pleasure in the joys of language used carefully and well.

Cast your vote

The election of club officers is over for this year, but the current Toastmaster magazine brings word that there is an opportunity fot the club to vote on seven  amendments to the Toastmasters Bylaws at the International Convention this year. (Unless we have a representative at the convention, we can submit a proxy stating our preference.)

The seven amendments are listed on pages 27 and 28 of the magazine. They are

  • Dues Payments: Methods
  • Dues Payments: Timing
  • International Leadership Comittee Service Timeline
  • Floor Candidacy Prerequisites
  • International Director Qualifications
  • Minimum Vote Percentage
  • Honorary Club Membership

The first two certainly are overdue for discussion by the board (and I think Ralph’s opinion as out long-time treasurer ought to guide us) and the amendment about International Director Qualifications is probably a good idea. The others don’t seem to touch our club directly. Please take a moment to look them over and pass your opinion along to Anna and Kate.

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