I was a Toastmasters Area Speech Contest Judge!

Last night I went to the area level speech contest for my Toastmasters area. The Toastmasters clubs are organized by area-division-district-region. Last month we had our club contest and the winners went on to last night???s area contest. I went to support Lori (who beat me out in our club???s Table Topics contest) and Jerome (who won our club???s Humorous contest).

Toastmasters clubs around the world run contests every six months. Six months ago I won our club???s Tall Tales contest and at the area contest the only people from our club that were not participating in the contest were Jerome and the family of the other contestant. I was so glad the other people were there to support me that I decided I would go out of my way to go to the contests to support my fellow club members (because I hadn???t really done that before).

And I am so glad that I went because while everyone was coming in at getting ???registered??? and getting organized the chief judge approached me and asked if I could be a judge. I got to judge an area level contest! I have to look, but I think that might count for something in my Competent Leadership manual. I???m going to put it on my resume, too. Also, I am starting to be recognized by other clubs??? members and by the area governors and such. I am actually starting to learn how to network??? again, I am so glad I went.

Our contestants had some tough competition??? well, Lori had some tough competition. Lori was up against a guy, Dwight, who was the keynote speaker at the most recent TLI (Toastmasters Leadership Institute). Plus she froze, poor gal. The question was ???What is your favorite movie???? She reads books, she doesn???t watch movies. But she recovered well, she just couldn???t outdo Dwight???s introduction joke of liking any movie with him in it followed up by a hilarious description of why mild-mannered Dwight???s favorite movie is The Godfather. When you can???t even think of a favorite movie it???s hard to live up to a very detailed description of favorite scenes from another person???s favorite movie.

Jerome did not have any competition; the other contestant was a no-show. But that does not diminish Jerome???s achievements at all. He gave a great speech, although I could tell he was nervous at the beginning. But, again, he recovered well and he painted beautiful pictures of the eccentric characters that have traveled, worked, and still inhabit Route 66, including his aunt Mavis. In fact, one thing he added after giving the speech at the club level was an accent for the joke told to Aunt Mavis by Pancho Villa???s son. That got a laugh, the joke was corny but in the horrible Spanish accent he used to imitate Pancho Villa???s son it was very funny.

Now I know what I???m going to be doing October 16: Division Speech Contest supporting Jerome and Dwight. Yes, I know, Dwight???s not in my club but he???s in my area so I am going to support him when he goes up against other area contestants at the division contest. ??

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