Friday Fiction: First Toastmasters Speech

Wednesday I presented my first speech at Toastmasters–the public speaking group. Today, I present it here. Please leave constructive criticism. I apologize for the sound quality: handheld USB recorders aren’t necessarily the most high tech of recording options.

I will probably upgrade the storage here so can actually podcast later… If, of course, I get enough feedback.

5 thoughts on “Friday Fiction: First Toastmasters Speech

  1. Listening to it at this very moment. Here’s my running commentary:

    • Slow down, you’re doing fine.
    • “I’m going to prove how big a nerd I am in three easy steps.” The suspense here is incredible. You’ve just lit three sticks of dynamite. “And now,” you say, “watch me juggle.”
    • Ah, the parent’s basement gag.
    • Academic tone here is actually good — see “valued … by the society as a whole” and “acceptable” and “context.”
    • Fringy is a bit of jargon I approve of.
    • Nice. It’s a good time to be a civics nerd.
    • Blog joke… pause for laughs… good.
    • “I use computers for the next part…” Spoiler: it’s WoW, right?
    • Huh. Not WoW but… music. Music as nerdy? You’re low-balling it here, Mart. Last Friday was WoW fanfic, and here you’re prefacing RPGs with “God forbid.”
    • Obsession alone doesn’t make you a nerd — you can be obsessive about sports and not be a sports nerd, can’t you?
    • This doesn’t quite make your case. Music and politics and time management makes you the nerdiest nerd employed by the circuit court?
    • Eager to hear another one of these.

  2. In my third draft of the speech, I stated that the only person I knew that was a bigger nerd than me lived in Atlanta. I also had a Star Trek/BSG reference. My audience is not as well versed in nerddom as most of my friends are–But you’re right. I totally low-balled it.

    As for the nerd point, I think I will have another speech on what defines a nerd. My next speech, “Organizing your speech,” is going to be on coffee.

  3. Will said most of the things I’d have pointed out.

    Definitely slow down a bit and breathe more. You sounded out of breath a lot, especially at the beginning, probably from rushing your words (and being nervous).

    You did skip over a lot of the things about you that, here on the interwebs, you’ve held up as nerd badges of pride: WoW, BSG, game night, books. On one hand, I can understand being reluctant to bring up WoW with colleagues*, but on the other, if you’re proudly declaring yourself a nerd, you’ve left out several of your biggest supporting points.

    Under the politics section, you state that most nerds are libertarians. Where did that information come from? Were I grading the speech, I’d be looking for a citation to back that up. I’m not sure there is anything beyond personal experience, but you state it as a fact.

    “One of my friends gave me a cookbook…” Hee.

    Overall, it was a good speech. Your voice was clear, and after the first minute or so you seemed to relax a bit.

    Looking forward to the next one!

    *When we got our new machines a few weeks ago, the IT guy saw my WoW page-a-day calendar** and would. not. shut up. about it. And when he had to call the helpdesk for something, the girl who answered got an earful of “I’m at Lauren’s desk. She plays WoW too!”

    **No one gave me any calendars for Christmas this year. It was that or something like Daily Inspirations for the Working Mom.

  4. You hear it most with baseball, but the guys who view stats as the be all end all, and invent all sorts of crazy new categories are commonly refered to as “numbers geeks” or “stats geek”.

    Geek vs. Nerd?

  5. Slow down.

    You’re going off on too many of tangents.


    Did you not want to out yourself as a gamer? Because without that, you’re really not that nerdy.

    Your giving of the speech was good, the speech itself needs work.

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