I won another speech contest last night.
I represented my Toastmasters club East Valley Echoes in the Saguaro Area 3 International and Table Topics Contests.
While I didn’t win the Table Topics (impromptu speech) contest, I gave what can only be described as a Miss America answer to the question.
Q: If a genie gave you three wishes what would they be?
A: World peace, my novel to be a best seller and for all children to be clothed, fed and educated.
I sat down and Laughed Out Loud at myself. While these are all admirable things to request from a genie, it was out of character for me to be all Miss America about it.
My friend said he is buying me a sash for that answer. Then we both laughed out loud. I am as close to a Miss America contestant as a bull in a china shop.
Glad the impromptu was over. I was happy I lost so I didn’t advance to the next competition level in that category.
I wanted to win the International Competition.
I could taste the win from the moment I won the club contest.
I don’t compete unless I am competing to win.
Practicing the speech in the hours before the competition, I was disheartened. It wasn’t coming together like I had envisioned. Time was running out and I had to get ready.
I got in the shower and executed what can only be described as the award winning speech.
I am BRILLIANT in the bathroom. It’s the most inspiring room of the house.
The opening and closing of the speech were crafted.
The transitions from one idea to another were perfected.
I put on the little black dress and headed to the contest.
By random selection I was first to speak in the impromptu and third of four speakers in the prepared speech competition.
The first speaker was brilliant. While there were three other speakers, I knew she was the speaker for me to beat.
As the second speaker told his tale, I was running my speech through my mind. I was remembering the transitions, opening and closing.
I am a writer. I never have to worry about the content of the speech. I lose because of my opening and closing.
Not this time.
Last night I kicked ass. The speech flowed. I used vocal variety. The audience laughed when I wanted them to laugh – and a couple times when I didn’t plan for a laugh which made me laugh. I opened and closed the speech like never before.
I sat down next to a member of my club. He whispered, “That was fantastic.” That was huge. He has been a Toastmaster for 29 years and counting.
Another club member said it was phenomenal. Wow.
My friend took me for a celebratory dinner where he let me ramble for an hour about what the heck just happened. I am a writer, not a speaker.