Project Summary : Body language is an important part of speaking because it enhances your message and gives you more credibility. It also helps release any nervousness you may feel. Stance, movement, gestures, facial expressions and eye contact help communicate your message and achieve your speech’s purpose. Body language should be smooth, natural and convey the same message that your listeners hear. Read “Gestures: Your Body Speaks (Item 201)” online at www.toastmasters.org.
- Use stance, movement, gestures, facial expressions and eye contact to express your message and achieve your speech’s purpose.
- Make your body language smooth and natural.
Time limit: 5 to 7 minutes with a minimum qualification time of 4 minutes 30 seconds and maximum time of 7 minutes 30 seconds.
“Gautam!! What is the plural of child? Am asking you Gautam what is the plural of child”
“How many times to teach you engleesu pa. The plural of child is not childsu. It is Childrensu. Write 100 times”
Contest master, fellow Toastmasters and all the fun lovers present here. How many of you have had such an English teacher? We all know that behind every man’s success there is a woman. I attribute my success in Toastmasters to my childhood English teacher Geetha Miss. If she had not taught me English like this, I would not have joined Toastmasters to improve my English. And because of the English I Learnt from Geetha miss, I happened to be a serial killer of English for the first 18 years of my life.
This English killing habit started long back, right from the days when I was in 6th class. All of us might have had letter writing exercise in our middle school English paper. Geetha miss taught me to write a letter to my uncle thanking him for the beautiful birthday gift, a titan watch. The letter was something like, “Dear Uncle. Thank you so much for your love and affection. I received your birthday gift. The watch is beautiful. I learnt time management. Convey my love to aunt. With love, Gautam Sharma”. With some maaney, thaeney, ponmaanaey in between. But unfortunately in the exams, I was asked to write a letter to a postman for promptly delivering a money order. First of all I did not know what money order was. I though, my uncle has given something related to time, postman uncle has given something related to money, Time is money. I started writing, “Dear postman. Thank you so much for your love and affection. I just received the money order. The money order is beautiful. I learnt money management. Convey my love to your wife, With love Gautam Sharma”. Thank god I didn’t post that letter.
With great difficulty I completed middle school and entered into high school. But my legacy still continued. On account of mother’s day, Geetha miss asked me deliver a 5 minutes speech about mothers love. I was prepared, ready on stage. But the moment I saw such a huge audience, I forgot my script. I somehow started, “I love my mom”. Woww!! The audience thought, this guy is going to give a brilliant speech about mothers love, let’s listen, they came forward. “I love my dad”. Ammaazing!! The audience thought. This guy is going to balance both mothers love and fathers love and give a brilliant speech. Let’s listen. They came even forward. I took a small pause. 30 seconds, It’s called the Ghajini pause. By now the audience were there on the edge of their seats. Waiting for me to utter the next sentence, and I spoke, “I love both my mom and dad”. In the same fashion I spoke for 5 full minutes and at the end I gave a heart touching conclusion to my mother’s day address, “Friends. understand that there only two people who are very important to you in this world. 1 – Your mom and dad…and.. 2…Your parents”.
After brutally murdering my high school English, it was time to get into college. By now I had got the famous SMS equipment for any youth. I used to send d a lot of messages those days. Especially to beautiful girls. One day, a girl from my class, Nisha, wanted to make fun of me. That is very obvious. I was the most sought after “Comedy piece” in my college. In Toastmasters, the moment we think about making fun, there are few names that come to our mind. Like our Suganthi or our Karthik Srinivasan. In my college whenever people wanted to have fun, I was the only choice. Nisha sent me an SMS – “Gautam, you look very smart and handsome…LOL”. LOL!!??!! I am from a village background and I never knew the meaning of these abbreviations. LOL, ROFLMAO. But my ego prevented me from asking her. Common man, a girl has just called me smart..Handsome. How can I portray myself as a fool? I thought that she is complementing me and assumed that LOL means Loads of Love. From that day, every message I sent to Nisha had loads of love in it. “Hey hi Nisha…LOL”, “Congrats for scoring high marks in mathematics..LOL”…”You look very pretty…LOL”. This went on for few weeks and one day her grandmother passed away. She sent me an SMS, “Gautam I am very sad, my grand mom passed away”. I replied. “Hey… So sad that your grandma passed away. Very kind lady. Very kind lady. I feel like crying……LOL”.
If I look back, I believe that I had been the cruellest murderer of English language. At least now I am trying to stop. But there is one person, my senior who continues to kill English. He joined politics and became a millionaire. I joined TCS and became a Toastmaster. Even today he uses phrases like “I have two daughters, both of them are girls”… “Why are you laughing… say Yes or No” “Don’t laugh again and again and trouble me. I am not well, I have winter in my nose today”…… Thank god he didn’t become a toastmaster. I murdered English. He would have murdered the audience by now. Fellow toastmasters and guests…. LOL…!!!
Click here to watch the speech video of “L.O.L”