“Sure, go ahead and laugh. You may think I’m joking, but … my tongue is insured.”
I suppose, since she claims to be the world’s highest paid Dog Food Taster, that might not be out of the question.
But if you could be the world’s highest paid taster of anything, I’d much prefer the earlier speaker’s job: Whisky Ambassador. Besides, it’s doubtful whether or not the Popcorn Sprayer is allowed any tasting and you wouldn’t want to taste anything the Wrinkle Chaser might deal with in a day.
It seems like a wacky stand-up comedy show, but it’s actually a meeting of the Sundogs Toastmasters. This week’s Table Topic theme is, “Jobs You May Have Never Considered”. Participants are given two minutes to give an impromptu talk about a topic written on a card which they have only just now pulled out of a closed envelope.
And when they say two minutes, they mean two minutes. The person whose turn it is to be the timer sits at the opposite end of the table from the podium and holds up different coloured cards so you don’t need to keep checking your watch. You can focus your attention on your speech and wrap it up on time.
Toastmasters International’s program promotes “Competent, Confident Communication” and you will learn much more than how to combat the fear of public speaking. You will learn to be a better listener, to give and receive constructive evaluation and to think on your feet. Skills you already possess will be enhanced.
There is a wide scope of possibilities within the framework of the organization where skill development is taken one step at a time.
A fine example is a speech given earlier during the meeting. Aptly dubbed, “The Ice Breaker”, this first in the series of prepared speeches, which every member gives, serves to introduce a new member to the club. This time you are allowed four to six minutes.
Today’s “Ice Breaker” described his childhood surroundings, his favourite things about them and shared with us his nickname for his brother, Brad: “Bratley”.
This group insists on making their audience laugh. A few people brought their lunch; others – including the Professional Whistler and the Light Bender – are sipping coffee.
Special calls of appreciation and a bit of table banging indicate the approval of the room when a speaker utilizes the “Word of the Day” provided at the beginning of the meeting by the member whose turn it is to be the Grammarian.
Today’s word is “salacious”, as in arousing, appealing, lusty. Now, was it the Dice Inspector or the Fountain Pen Repairer who claimed to receive salacious invitations from customers from time to time?
There are, in fact, not one but three Toastmasters clubs in Whitehorse. For further details, or if you are interested in attending a meeting in order to find out more, phone 456-4752 for the 7 a.m. Wednesday meetings, 633-6228 for Thursday meetings at noon, or 633-2190 for the Wednesday meetings at 6:30 p.m.
You can also visit www.toastmasters.org.
Oh, yes, and although the Table Topic this week naturally leant itself to exaggeration, creativity and laughter, all of those professions really do exist.