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October 2016 Division G presents


Table of Contents: 1.

Division Director’s Address


Area Director’s Addresses


Mentoring in Toastmasters


A Study of Stage Fear


Get the Taste of a Toastmaster


Every Grain Matters


Tough Times Don’t Last, Tough People Do


Where REAL Leaders Are Made


Speechcraft at TCS

10. Poet’s Corner 11. Wherever You Go 12. Practical Leadership Lessons 13. A Note from Zurich 14. A Stubborn Anchor 15. The Humor Factor 16. An Interview with a Comic

Editor’s Note

The artistic side of toastmasters has always fascinated me. The word play of speeches, the rhythm of cadence and the body language we imbibe in our speeches all have the note of art in them. Another avenue to express our creative thoughts was the newsletter. Hence we decided to use this stage, the stage of the Division Souvenir: Impressions to express the artistic side of ourselves. In this edition of Impressions, we decided to use HUMOR as an underlying idea in our articles. I had a wonderful editor who helped me put together this masterpiece: TM Gautam from Infosys Shols Toastmasters Club I also use this platform to thank our Division Director, DTM Sunil Baffna and the Conference Chair: TM Pratima for providing us this opportunity to create this marvel of artistic ideas. It is a product of the hard work and dedication of the editorial team that have led to the culmination of this edition of Impressions. The creativity of our editors should be applauded for it took a great deal of skill to bring together this creation and I am proud to present to you:

Impressions: The Opulent Edition. -

- TM Akshaya TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters Club Chief Editor

Bee at Opulence 16 To my Division G and District 82 Family: Recently I was conducting a Campusto-corporate program for a batch of new hires at a multi-national organization at Hyderabad. Towards the end of the program the vibes I was getting from the participants were surreal. I could see and feel that they were inspired by the ideas that I had facilitated during the 3-day program and had developed a genuine respect towards me. One of the participants who announced himself as a keen observer, for I did feel that he was a fairly good observer by what he shared during the session, said, “You came in as a dark horse and my friends and I were like – Oh gosh! We are going to have a very formal learning session; but today I feel that you are a fresh breath of inspiration with your style of facilitation and care for the participants”. The other participants joined him in chorus – Yes, we agree. I thanked each participant multiple times for I was dazed and didn’t’t know what else to do. I also noticed after a few seconds that my hands were automatically in a “Namaskar”-posture. I was having so many nice-feelings all at the same time that I was unable to express them in words. As I pen this article, I find myself smiling as I realize how Toastmasters has wrought me into a Humble-bee – I like to call myself this when my humility is naturally flowing from my heart rather than by the thought that “it is important to be humble at all times”. Today, I would like to share two things that have specifically helped me in Toastmasters to grow in the humble-bee dimension. First, is to mentor selflessly. I find it greatly satisfying when I mentor someone selflessly and after many projects or months down the line – I hear them say that I would

like to share the credit for my improvement with my mentor Sunil! Second is working for the Toastmasters movement and not just restricting to your Toastmasters club. Time and again, I have been fortunate in learning something that would otherwise not be possible if I had not stepped out of my comfort zone – i.e. my home club. Share and care, laugh and learn, experiment and entertain, motivate and mesmerize or just listen and grow. Toastmaster’s is an ocean of opportunities and Division and District conferences are a great way of making waves. I am privileged to welcome you all to Opulence 2016 and address as the Division Director of Division G, District 82. Wishing you all a roller coaster ride like a bee . . . Humble-bee!!! Happy Toastmastering! -

Sunil Baffna, DTM Division Director Division G | District 82

Area Directors’ Addresses Area Director - G1: Life is all about twists and turns and how well we play the game. Each of you joined Toastmasters for a reason, to hone your public speaking skills or leadership skills or to network with people. I urge you to come and attend the conference to transform the way you visualize yourself, consider it as a deadline for each of your milestone in your journey as a Toastmaster, like how each of our club celebrates milestones. Come out and play the game of Life by taking accountability in each of the activity you do, it's not the role, which defines who you are, it's the expression which defines and leaves a mark in each person you meet in your life. Choose what impression you want to leave the person with. Our term now is aged a quarter old, and lots of events and milestones crossed to showcase you, and a lot more to come. Grab opportunities and you will be contributing to the transformed you, each time, you step out of your comfort zone. Keep rocking. -

Area Director – G2: Dear Toastmasters of Division G & District 82, Greetings for the Day! It has been an inspiring and ardent relationship I have had with this entity for the last three years. I believe that “Every day is a learning” and I always get something new & inspiring from my fellow toastmasters who are both younger and older than me. Getting an advice from a junior and an apology from a senior in the most congenial way happens only in the Toastmasters community. Going beyond your club is very important, be it joint club sessions, OTP, Emergence, Division or District conferences, one will get to know the quality of communication, leadership & networking styles executed elsewhere and look at how we can adopt those styles to improve our growth. It is also equally very important that we keep motivating ourselves to sustain our energy levels against odds of discouraging words,

TM Muki Vangipuram Sridharan

domestic or official commitments, etc. As

Area Director – G1

rightly pointed out by our District 82 Director,

Division G | District 82

let us ENGAGE, ENJOY & ENRICH ourselves in



The joint conference of Division G

(Opulence) & Division B (Reflections) on 15th

I love to speak, I love to network, I love

Oct 16, is a great opportunity where can we

being who I am. Being Inspired and to Inspire

can hone our knowledge on speech craft,

others, motivates every individual.

networking skills and have loads of fun. We as

Toastmasters has inspired me and my journey

toastmasters continuously strive to inculcate

will continue here to Inspire others as well. I

good values and have definite goals. It is

am sure you will have a great experience in

important that we achieve our objectives

this fraternity.

together, through seamless cooperation and

Happy Toastmastering.

active participation. Let us together learn,

unlearn, re-learn, grow, sharpen our speaking


TM Santhosh Thomas

and leadership skills and build long-lasting

Area Director - G2

relationships with other like-minded leaders.

Division G | District 82

Mentoring in Toastmasters One thing that sets Toastmasters apart


other models of learning, is the process of mentoring. If your

others”. I had my first mentee after 3 years of Toastmastering experience. I learned much more by reviewing the speech scripts of my mentees and by helping them in perfecting their delivery. Some of the skills that you’ll develop by mentoring are patience, listening, paying attention to details, giving respect for others’ views, giving effective feedback, setting right goals and motivating for results.

Toastmasters journey is like driving a car, your

Mentors can help both new and experienced

mentor is the GPS who guides you to choose

toastmasters. Like a Mom who assists her kid to

the right path to reach your destination. If you

get adjusted to the world, mentors help new

are wondering, how can I maximize the value of

members by “easing the transition”. A new

$45 that we pay in Toastmasters, it is through

member who enters the club faces unfamiliar

the mentoring process.

situations and unfamiliar people. Like a Mom

A couple of days back, a fellow Toastmaster and a colleague had dropped into my cabin. He was promoted recently to a manager role by clearing an internal interview. He thanked me

who teaches the basic life skills to you, mentors help new members with the basic life skills in toastmasters. ·

Counter” is … what a “Timer” is etc.,

profusely for guiding him to complete his Project Management Professional (PMP)


certification. He felt that completing a PMP certification helped him to maintain an edge over other eligible candidates. Mentoring is a in





Mentors educate you on the club standards and customs


Mentors provide you individual attention and support

skill when rightly used, can transform lives…not only

Mentors explain what an “AH


Mentors shorten your learning curve

personal/professional lives.

Mentors also play the role of a Teacher. Like a

My friend DTM Kartik Srinivasan used to say

Teacher who assists his/her student to learn

“Saro! You can become stronger only by lifting

advance skills, mentors help experienced

toastmasters to “develop special skills”. An

relationship provides many opportunities,

experienced toastmaster already knows things

offers many challenges and has many rewards.

like club standards, the meaning of various roles in Toastmasters and other basic toastmastering skills. However, an experienced toastmaster may need to develop special skills such as “Humorously speaking”, “Motivational speaking”





experienced Toastmaster can refine their skills and learn new special skills, through the mentoring process.

Though the GPS guides the person who is using it, the GPS itself has to continuously update its maps and continuously learn about the various incidents that are happening around. It will help the GPS to stay relevant and useful. Similarly, mentoring process provides continuous learning opportunities not only for the mentees, but also for the mentors. Experience them for yourself. Benefit

When you go to your club next time, look

from the skills of a mentor – then, become a

around the room. Who can you help become

mentor and share those benefits with others.

familiar with the club? Whom can you help

Happy mentoring!

learn new speaking or leadership skills? Who may be able to help you learn new speaking or leadership



- DTM Saro Velrajan Chennai Speakers Forum


Past Division G Governor District 82

A Study of Stage Fear Roscoe Drummard once said, “The mind is a


thing, it starts working


minute you are born and doesn’t stop until you get up to speak in public”. The fear of standing up in front of an audience is nothing new and has existed since time immemorial. Leaders throughout history have shown fear of presentation moments before stepping on stage, take Marc Anthony for example, do you think he wasn’t afraid to stand in front of a crowd and defend himself when accused of Caesar’s murder? However, as with any good story, he won the crowd with his choice of words, and won the instantaneous reaction of the crowd. Psychologists define anxiety as an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried

psychologists from all over the world. Researchers put people through what is called the Trier Social Stress Test, a test developed by Trier University in Germany. The test involves participants to prepare a five-minute speech within ten minutes and present it in front of a panel for a job at a lab. Once the participant has prepared, a video camera is focused on them and they are to present their speech— behaviors such as fidgeting, speech and language is noted. Upon completion of the speech, participants are required to count backwards from 1022 by 13—stressful enough? The Trier Social Stress Test has been proven to give an accurate picture of how stress affects us due to social evaluation. When people are watching you and noticing minute details you are most definitely going to feel stressed. Fortunately, this study enables us to also find ways to deal with stress and social anxiety with regard to public speaking. Some tips to reduce anxiety before taking on the stage:

thoughts and physical changes like increased

Know what you want: The biggest mistake of

blood pressure. Anxiety exists in different

many speakers is that they do not 100%

forms throughout our life from infancy to old

understand their topic. This leads to an

age. The fear of public speaking is, in fact, part

unnecessary amount of anxiety. Prior to taking

of a twenty-year-old research conducted by

on the stage, try your best to do some research

or ask others if you don’t have much time to

you are comfortable and proceed with



Psychology of the audience: Think about your

Body movements: Studies have shown that

audience and what THEY want to hear. Not

when you stretch and move around a room

everyone enjoys listening to someone droning

before a presentation, your brain gets

on and on about the same topic—try your best

alleviated and this leads to an elevated self

to add humor and some ease in the speech to

confidence boost which helps us present

keep the audience listening.

ourselves better. So, prior to taking on the

Think: Put some thought into what you are going to say. Do not blurt out random

stage stretch, wave your hands, run, etc. and show the world who YOU are!

statements but think—will this statement help

Have a take away: You know you’ve won a

me in my speech?

speech when your audience has an “AHA”

Organize: Organize the information which you are to present. This will reduce your tension as well as it will help you on stage by making you appear more confident. Deep breathing: Close your eyes and breathe. Organize all your thoughts and visualize the stage. Inhale and exhale several times- until

moment and when they take something back with them at the end, something which they will quote at some point to a friend or acquaintance and say I heard this person say this during a speech. That, my friend, is when you’ve succeeded.

- Nivashini Manivannan Psychologist and Psycho-Therapist

Get the Taste of a Toastmaster

The perpetual augmentation in the levels of

A Toast

Objectives though tastes a bit bitter, would

Master will

still make the speaker better, as he keeps

certainly be

perceiving the spasm for only his prowess and

able to get


all the

tastes of

The Penultimate taste of Sucrose, arising in

the world,

mind like a red rose, after one becomes a

once he adapts to the vicissitudes that keeps

Distinguished Toast Master is an elated feeling

burgeoning in the Toastmaster’s

transposing from Ephemeral to Eternal pride.


After becoming a DTM, one shouldn’t refrain

The first time a new Toast Master enters the

himself within a wall of four, which will taste

arena or podium to give his prepared speech,

excessively sour. However, by mentoring and

he would inevitably feel a minuscule moment

helping others will make DTM’s Life more

of Spiciness, when facing the audience for the


first time.

To culminate, any day, the world would keep

The incessant appreciation from the

saying colloquially “He is a show-off” and

remaining club members, ubiquitously

every fellow Toast Master should take it as a

applauding both at the start and completion of

pinch of Salt.

the speech creates a gargantuan impetus in

the speaker’s mind. Thus, puts the speaker at

- TM Renin Bhabha Martin

ease and feels like tasting a savory, craving for


Every Grain Matters It was a cold winter night, the wedding day of a beautiful couple. Among the guests was a kid with his father. Seeing the varieties of dishes and numerous other delicacies, the kid was tempted. He wanted to try the variety of cakes, noodles, main course, and sweet dishes. He asked in an excited voice,” Daddy, I want to have the noodles, the dal makhni, the butter paneer, the butter roti, dahi bhalla and

Years later, when the guy was out for a treat with his college friends, he remembered the wise words of his father and finished the food in his plate. To his surprise, his friends started to make fun of him and said: “Hey, look he is so greedy that his plate is all empty. Why don’t you leave something in plate? It’s a status symbol for us not to end with empty plate. Why are you acting so low class?” The guy said the wise words of his father to them, but again was mocked. The youngsters didn’t pay any heed to his words and said “Please don’t start with the lecture like our professor. He is mad. Why are u acting like him”? The boy decided to stay calm at the moment and ignored them.

all the sweets”. His father, a wise man replied

Time went on and he joined an MNC. He

in a composed tone:” Son, take whatever you

was of the mindset that people who work in

like, but make sure you do not waste it!!” The

MNCs are professionals and expected that he

son asked: But this way, I won’t be able to

wouldn’t find wastage of food in office canteen.

taste everything. “ The father said: “Do you

He was dismayed to see hundreds of people

know what these people will do to the food

wasting food every day in the office canteen.

that is wasted? They will throw it away. All the

The waste was so much that there was a

wasted food is thrown and still we have

separate bin for food waste in the canteen. He

millions of people in our country who don’t

always wondered when will the people

even get one-time meal in a day”. Leave the

change? Will this wastage go on forever? Then

rest for some other wedding son, he added in

that boy got a chance to express his concern

a polite manner.

and as a result he wrote this article. Friends, we live in the 21st century, an advanced





technologies around us. But technology can’t

For instance, if you don’t eat sambar with

replace the food we eat. According to World

pongal, don’t take it in the first place. That’s

Bank figures, around 276 million people in India

better than wasting it. We all need to bring a

are below poverty line. Majority of them don’t

slight change. I thus request you to not waste

even get one meal a day. I feel sad when I see

food and even encourage your colleagues for

people wasting food at offices, functions,

the same. As far as I am concerned, my plate is

hotels and even at home. All of us work and

always empty when I finish eating. I still have

earn money so that we can fill our stomach.

those wise words of my father embedded in my

One side I see people wasting food in offices,

small brain. All we need is a slight change and

on the other side I see poor people searching

change can be brought when we work

for food in garbage. Just ask someone who did

together. Robin Sharma puts it correctly

not have even a single meal in a day, what is he

“Change is hard at first, messy in the middle

willing to do for food. He will be ready to eat

and glorious at the end”.

from the thrown away food too. It hurts to see such scenarios.

- Bhomik Chopra TCS Maitree Chennai Toastmasters Club

All of us need to understand our responsibility and should try not to waste food.

Tough times never last, tough people do The year was 2012 and TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters club took its first step in the month of July. Our parent club TCS Maitree Chennai Toastmasters club was brimming with members with the tally going beyond 100. This served as the catalyst of sorts and Alpha was

Those were days when the number of empty chairs exceeded the number of Toastmasters / Guests. Guests were like a mirage in a desert and we slowly crawled past 10 meetings. The excomm was giving its best shot and DTM Oomment tried all the tricks in his bag to keep us motivated. The excomm members especially had to juggle between lots of roles and there were times when a single person donned the hat of almost four roles in a single day.

born. We were under the dynamic leadership

“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90%

of DTM Oomment John and I was his deputy

how you respond to it.” This quote is very

as the VPE.

relevant in Toastmasters. On a similar note the

As Alpha took its baby steps, initially, we found the going tough owing to the following reasons: 1) Some of the members were still not happy with the split 2) People were finding it difficult to get accustomed to the new timings on Thursday 3) People were yet to come in terms with the third club in Siruseri – Alpha

hard work put in by each of the members and excomm slowly began to bear fruit. We edged past 25 meetings and the membership slowly started picking up. Word of mouth spread and the brand Alpha was slowly spreading. We soon came to be known for high quality meetings and guests started flocking in. I got elected as president in the next term and were continuing the momentum. I was ably supported by DTM Oommen John and DTM Rahul Shankar in this phase. In the forthcoming days we were truly blessed with

some wonderful set of officers. TM Sharanya,

1) Stick to the basics and ensure high

TM Ayyappan and TM Manikandan or “The

quality meetings are running

Three Musketeers” as they were famously

2) Group regularly & go over your

known came in and Ushered in a new Era for

strategy with the Excom. If needed

Alpha. They worked hard for the club and the

make necessary reinforcements

chemistry they had between themselves did

3) If there is a dearth for members

wonders for the club. They went to become established VPE, VPM in the forthcoming days.

conduct membership campaigns

TM Ayyappan went to add more than 60

regularly. Speech contests should do

members in his two terms as VPM. From

the job for corporate clubs. Community

”Empty chairs > Members“ clause Alpha ran

clubs can try circulating flyers.

power packed full house meetings.

4) Ensure the excom stays in high sprit by

It is said “Difficult roads often lead to beautiful

appreciating even the tiny things that

destinations”. Alpha almost acquired a midas

are going on the right track

touch and continues to be one of the

5) Remember “This too shall pass”

powerhouse clubs in Division G churning out champion members and extraordinary leaders

The beauty of this Toastmasters program

time and again. The flamboyant leader who

is that it always puts us in a state of

led Division G to become number 1 in the

bother, outside our comfort zone. In this

world – DTM Rahul Shankar is an Alpha

we evolve and learn a lot. As we continue

member. “Champion of Champions” Two time

our journey in this quest to become a

Division Champion and 2015 district runnerup

better leader and communicator we are

Jaswanth Krishnamurthy Is an Alpha member.

bound to make slow but steady progress.

The list just goes on. Till this date Alpha is

We are sure to learn, care and grow as a

continuing to churn out lots of leaders and

team. On that day when we look at our

communicators and as the charter VPE it is

accomplishments just like each of the

extremely pleasing and delightful to see Alpha

Alphas look at our club I am sure Ralph C.

winning laurels one after another.

Smedley would be one very happy man.

A New club is bound to face lots of challenges

- Ranganathan Rajendran

and this was our strategy to mitigate them

TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters Club


Where “REAL� Leaders are made TI-Youth Leadership Program (YLP) is a (8-9

Saturdays (from 9th July to 10th Sept,

sessions, each for 2-3 hours) program to

2016). It started with an orientation and

empower the youth with the essential

warm up session on 9th July, through

ingredients on communication and

regular Education and TM sessions every

leadership skills.

week and ended with a Valedictory on 10th Sept, 2016.

I had the wonderful opportunity to seed, germinate, nurture a Tree which produced

It was a memorable journey. I had

over a 100 Young Leaders through YLP at

immense learning on event management,

Panimalar Institute of Technology, on the

team structuring and coordination,

outskirts of Chennai between July and Sept

Program resource planning and execution,

2016. I had ideated this program for the

design of weekly meetings, and many

college during one of my regular skills

more. For such a large scale voluntary-

Training sessions for their students at the

based event I received support from all

college in Sept 2015.

quarters, much more than I had imagined. I unlearnt and relearnt skills both from my

personal and professional perspective. I learnt important technology tools - a key to managing virtual teams. Through my Professional Training, I have understood the learning patterns of

budding youth, adults and seniors. Budding youth want to be independent in their decisions, in their need fulfilment and

As the Chief coordinator I led a team of 12

in what they set to do in future. Their

Toastmaster co-coordinators for 9

model of relationships was different too.

They appreciate and learn better if their

results for its youth audience. This YLP

Coaches, Mentors and Teachers

stands a testimony to TI vision of being

understand and encourage their skills. YLP

truly “mutually-supportive”.

facilitates such a Learning Model.

The super success of the program would

For me this YLP was a challenge worth

have been unattainable had it not been for

going through. My personal attributes and

the selfless and “highest giving” attitude of

that of how I perceive others were put to

over 45 Toastmasters from across 17 clubs

test. I feel I have become calmer, more

in Chennai (8 were Corporate Clubs).

receptive and appreciative to different

Chennai Toastmasters Club had the

voices and opinions. My written, oral and

highest TM volunteers. Besides, the

non-verbal communication has been

college authorities and students also

chiselled for the better. I learnt that the

showed their grit to sustain a long-drawn

TEAM is where “Miracles are Achieved”.

program of this kind. I thank each and

I learnt to be proactive rather than reactive. I learnt to trust, believe and respect both my working team and reporting team. I learnt to handle a crisis situation and last minute exigencies. I learnt to draw a line when it came to quality, commitment and delivery of work and ethics. I learnt to be effectively

every one of them for their overwhelming support.

assertive and patient when needed. I

learnt how to prioritise work to fulfil each

My Guidance committee (TM Jaichitra,

step-goal during the journey. So many skills gained in a span of just 2 months is HARD TO BELIEVE.

DTM Sunil Baffna, TM Badhrinath) and Lead by DTM Suganthi Periasamy allowed me to work with freedom and within the

I was confident that I would make the 2

guidelines of the Program. It is proven

month long event a successful and

again that; When a Leader trusts his TEAM,

memorable one for all the stakeholders.

only the BEST outcomes result.

My experience at past YLP instilled in me the belief that YLP is a time-tested programme and would surely deliver the

There are two kinds of Toastmasters. One who say Toastmasters is their life and life

giver for others AND the others who say

they don’t have anything to do with it nor have time for it; Both are right. Clearly it is what a person wants from and wants to give for Toastmasters which defines what they can get from Toastmasters. According to me, YLP and Toastmasters is for those who wish to fill their skill gap for achieving their goals AND for those who want to empower future Leaders – THE YOUTH. - TM Varadarajan

Speech Craft at TCS

Chennai Toastmasters Club – DTM Suganthi A good



knows how to

With the help of Ex-com team and club


members, I kick started this program on 12th

A good leader

January 2016. A coordinator’s immense

knows what to

happiness lies with the overwhelming


response and enthusiasm of participants to

A Toastmaster

learn and achieve. Almost everybody was

knows how to be a good communicator and a

much interested and this encouraged me to

good leader!

conduct the program to the best of my ability.

With the help of past Area directors, TM

Toastmasters Program is a lane of both

Lavanya Adapalla and TM Manikandan,

Communication and Leadership in which

Presidents, and Vice Presidents, I could seek

members have a chance to acquire both the

help from 30 toastmasters from five different

skills simultaneously. One great example,

clubs. The educational sessions by DTM

which I have witnessed in the past three

Aravindan, DTM Suganthi Periaswamy and TM

months of my journey, is that, Speech craft

Lavanya Adapalla brought speechcrafters good

program is a program designed to present the

insights. The constructive evaluations by

fundamentals of public speaking to non-

experienced Toastmasters boosted the

members with the guidance of experienced

confidence level of speakers.


Finally, after 17 sessions of Speech Craft

A hungry Cheetah might fail to catch a deer,

Program, 21 Speech Craft participants

but I didn't miss. I readily accepted when my

achieved their feat of success – 3 Competent

club members offered me a chance to conduct

Speeches. Last but not the least – On 15th July

this Program. But this program wouldn't have

2016, Stupendous Valedictory meeting was

been successful without the support of this

conducted by the Speech Craft participants

one person who has been the reason behind

themselves. Notably, Manjuladevi – Executive

most of the achievements of TCS Maitree

HR of Maitree Chennai, Ramya – Product

Manager and Victor – Delivery Manager NGM

to the success of 21 participants. I am grateful

India participated in the event and felicitated

to DTM Suganthi Periaswamy, all Toastmasters

the Speech Craft participants.

and Speech Craft participants for the support

they provided during this period.

During these three months, I have gained a lot

It's just a beginning for me! A

of positive experiences – meeting different

beginning for Speech Craft Participants!

club members, leading a team etc. On the

whole, I walked out of the stage as an

- TM Niresh

accomplished man. I believe I kept up to the

TCS Maitree Chennai Toastmasters Club

expectations of my club members and the

participants. I hope this was a stepping stone

Poet’s Corner A journey not undertaken

A warning out of care, I barely presumed, And walked ahead to see the tomorrow I had

With a bright blue sky above my head,

already assumed.

And a bed of glossy green grass to tread,

But as it is said nothing remains static,

With those splendidly grown lilies on side,

There came a U-turn which made my life

And that glee on my face for this carefree ride;


Yes this thought, this dream I had always

Living into my dreams one day, I just felt



For what I thought my life’d be when this

Could feel my mother’s sobbing, hiding all the

world I’ll enter;

laughter that once glittered….

Her warmth I could sense on my heart then,

Unborn I have these several visions in my

And suddenly the agony behind her tears…….


“Mother what’s wrong?” I wished to ask,

Of the strength and affection I would get from

But couldn’t be much of a help to rescue her

people so kind.

from there………..

My mother, my father, my family dear,

The laughter my birth will bring on faces of

She cried and cried and I stood there,

those so near…..!

Now her tears had started taking the shape of

my fears….

But one thing I fail to understand;

She wrapped me into her arms, and coaxed

Why God said…” you are though my angel

me like she meant no harm,


She felt my heartbeat and then said….

But the world you’ll enter you need to fear;

A girl you’ll be and though I will be your father

“ Darling you are the one I always wanted to



But once you’re born don’t let it be a curse

But you know you are a girl which your family

you’d think I instilled….”

can’t bear

I can’t let you come out and see the world,

Because once you do that, I fear you’ll have to see worse; I promise myself to keep you safe and sound,

A Lucky Friend As I Moved into the world of trend,

But I am sorry I can’t leave you in the hands of

Searching for good & making myself

these hounds;

everywhere bend,

Your mother doesn’t have much of a choice,

Journey started from society and never had an

Look here I am crying over when I had to


rejoice; This society doesn’t’t deserve to be happy, And thus my child you don’t have to be snobby. I hope you’ll get a better life, I hope you’ll get a better chance.

It was hard to find a lucky friend Days passed and the position too And I finally found a friend who can make me woo

Forget this black present I gave you,

At every stage & every race he made me go

But trust me of the bright tomorrow I am


gifting to you….”

Then I realized that he is not just a friend, a

lucky friend instead

Yes, my dreams couldn’t come as reality, I am still here in my own fidelity;

Our frequency matched and I got a clue,

I wish to be born, I wish to live…

And I admitted, what I am is just because of

I wish not to be cursed for what I think is a gift


Give me my wings I wanna fly;

I wanna be a girl, a daughter, a mother soaring

- TM Fouzan Ashraf

high in the sky!

- TM Rupal TCS Insurance Toastmasters Club

Aristurtles Syntel Toastmasters Club

Wherever you Go Toastmasters is a fraternity that was able to

(which are never right) I come out satisfied

absorb me inside

and my Manager walks out confused. And

even before my

the outcome – don’t worry about it.

membership got processed. Just by attending one Toastmasters meeting as a guest, I got so impressed with the positive energy in that atmosphere and joined the gang to attend the Semi Annual Conference – Reverberations in Bangalore.

Whenever my girlfriend is angry (which happens all the time), the only weapon I have is Humor. All the humorous speeches in Toastmasters come to my rescue. Nothing works better than humor and chocolates in your romance – trust me on this. Technical Presentations are very

After Reverberations, there was no turning

critical to go to the next level in the

back. The amount of self-confidence,

professional ladder. And the twist in this is –

positivity and the obvious Love for Public

you need to make Non-Technical people

speaking gained in these years is immense.

understand your content and convince them

And all that has been worked out well for me

to get the deal. I open my presentation with

professionally and personally.

a question (Client attraction), include an

Appraisal meetings are very common for Corporate employees. The discussion that happens is always confusing and the outcome is never satisfying. But my Appraisal meetings went my way when I took them as Table Topics. Just after I hear this question – “What did you do last 6 months” my 2 minutes and 30 seconds begins. After nonstop speech with quotes, facts and figures

anecdote, add a personal connection (make sure audience don’t need a coffee), split my presentation into three or four segments, and reiterate the message to take away. In short, it would be my version of an International Speech. The confidence you get after completing this is magnanimous and I’m sure your peers would be gaping at you by the end of this. To put in a nutshell, Toastmasters is like the Pug from the Telecom Ad - Follows you wherever you Go.

- TM Pradeep

A Toastmaster’s Blossom As I write this note, small droplets of rain water

imposed rules like making it on time to the meetings, following the protocols, keeping our promises on completing our speech and leadership projects on time. The beauty is that when these rules &

make its presence felt

protocols are followed diligently, it becomes

on my balcony.

a way of life and makes a sound impact on

On macro level, these small droplets don't

our personal and professional life.

make a big difference however somewhere a

We all will blossom and add beauty to

thirsty flower awaits its fall. I am sure with

the toastmaster's garden which in turn will

the help of those small droplets the plant will

create a difference to our lives!

be nourished and flowers are sure to blossom tomorrow morning. We toastmasters are like that thirsty flower. All we need is small droplets of nourishment to make us blossom every day.

Let the flowers in our garden blossom like never before Happy Toastmatering!!

- TM Rajesh Natarajan

These small droplets are in the form of self-

Practical Leadership Lessons I am working in one of the top IT companies in India for the past (almost) 13 years. Over the course of time I was blessed to work under the leadership of various kinds of leaders, had great mentors and led a team ranging from 7 through 211. All these have taught me very important, yet practical leadership skills which are simple and powerful. Listen: As a leader many times we are expected to lead which makes many of us believe that we need to take decisions and the team needs to follow. We try to set examples and lead the way. We formulate strategy and think about ways to execute keeping the end goal in mind. However, many times I have learned the hard way that more than leading the way, it is important that listening to team members will benefit the betterment of the entire team.

“against my parents�. Even though they perfectly know what I did was wrong, they stood by me. It is because of this simple fact; many times I was extremely honest with my grandparents than anyone else. When we support someone in thick and thin, they become loyal and honest. They know they can always count on someone and that many times creates a more conducive environment to exchange ideas freely. A strong trusted environment develops. Communicate: The Internet Era simplified communication. We exchange ideas freely; we can broadcast ideas that are powerful to the far corners of the world in just 140 characters. We can share, like and comment on friends, families and celebrities from the comfort of the couch. Many times, I feel I was a better person in the world of social media than to my team members face to face. Virtual communication seems to be far easier than one on one discussion. I decided to make a change. I took a hard look, took every step to communicate with the team

Support: I love my grandparents not just

members sitting couple of cubicles away in a

because they listened to me like listening to

more positive and collaborative way. Better

the best orator in the world, not just for the

choice of words leads to better

stories they said, but for the simple fact that

communication. Better communication leads

they stood by my side through thick and thin

to better leadership and better leadership is

Trust and mutual respect forms the two rail

going to bring better career.

over which the entire train of team runs. If

Trust: There are different leadership style and I largely believe in “Trust and verify”

one fails, it is going to derail the journey to success and achievement

rather than “Verify and Trust”. Trust and

I have learned all the above lessons over the

mutual respect in a team is the single most

years in a very hard way. All these are simple

leadership lesson I learnt over the years. I

yet powerful which make a lasting impact in

need to trust my team to delegate, to get

every one’s leadership journey. Do you want

things done and to achieve the collective goal

to know which IT company I work for? Take

set for the entire team. If Trust is missing,

the first letter of all the four Lessons and look

respect for the team members and the work


they do will be lost.

- TM Vadivel TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters Club

A Note From Zurich Vanakkam! Gruezi mittenand! Warm greetings dear Toastmasters! I write to you, sitting far away, envious and missing all the action, fun and interactions that await you at Opulence & Reflections 2016! In the last one year, my ‘Toastmaster’

Being used to our District’s Humorous + Evaluation Contest and International Speech + Table Topics routine, this was quite the experience indeed! And yes, the annual International Speech Contest is combined with the evaluation contests. What I found most fascinating was the diversity in not just members’ culture but also the topics for speech and the manner of delivery. I enjoyed listening to simple – yet funny and inspiring speeches, enthusiastic

experience is countable in a single hand –just

members and very friendly office bearers. At

taking it easy and slowly, like the Swiss do!

the end of the meeting, I did realize how the

I had the opportunity to visit Zuriberg Toastmasters Club (City of Zurich) - a community club which comes under District 59 (Central and Western Europe). Having any expectations either ruins or raises your level of experience – I thankfully had the latter. To start with, the club met at the old town of Zurich – the charming little ‘Niederdorf’ (the old town near the Lake) in the banquet hall of a Thai restaurant called the ‘Blue Monkey’! The club meets bimonthly and my very first attendance was to witness the club Humorous speech and table topics contest (yes you read that right!).

program still maintains a very good set of principles, uniform guidelines and values that make a member feel at home – anywhere in the world – when you listen to the applause, the mission or look at the old familiar colors of the timer cards. (Or in my case, the smiling lady in the CC manual.) I even challenged myself and for the first time – volunteered to be the target speaker at the Area Level Evaluation contest! This was also my first ever Bi-lingual contest, for it was also the platform for the German Speech & Evaluation contests – Maybe next season, I hope to muster the courage

and knowledge to be the target speaker in

respect, liking and enthusiasm for the


program will continue to be at the highest

I am confident we will witness a similar such platform in our very own district in the near future (Hint: Thamizhootru!) So a target speech, a few contest ‘roles’ ( if you know what I mean) and many friends later – I continue to thank and look up to this wonderful program and just hope

levels thanks to the wonderful start I had at our very own clubs alongside every one of you! My best wishes to the DTMs, Division Directors and members involved in participating and organizing the conferences – I hope to meet you all soon!

that members and leaders continue to

Until then – Happy Toastmastering –

uphold the spirit, values and joy that it brings

celebrate your journey in an Opulent manner

to personal growth.

and continue to Reflect on your learning!

Although my frequency of meetings,

- DTM Rahul Shankar

speeches or activities has taken a low, my

TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters Club

A Stubborn anchor Thomas Aquinas once said, “If the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would keep it in port forever”. But ships aren’t made for a harbour, are they? Once upon a time there lived a

you have joined the movement. When I moved from Chennai to Mumbai in summer of 2015, my ship was at peace, I was happy not having any duties or responsibilities of the club, a long hiatus from writing speeches, attending meetings, performing roles. No more pestering from your VPE, who wouldn’t dream of it. All seemed good until a few months later my ship started missing the currents and the challenges of being at the sea. I realized my ship wasn’t made for the

stubborn anchor, made of the best iron in the

harbour it was made for the sea. Sounds too

country, it lived on a small port by the Indian

dramatic as it may, but isn’t it true that when

Ocean. It was great at holding the vessel

we join toastmasters we all have that fire

from drifting due to wind or current, which it

inside us and are in awe of the program but a

was built for. But it loved the shore more

few months later, the fire diminishes, the

than the vessel and was never ready to

excitement dies down, the dedication that

separate. The vessel would try talking to its

once existed isn’t there anymore, our ship

anchor to come discover new seas and

which once split the waters and created

horizons, but the anchor was adamant. The

ripples now rests safely at the harbour.

vessel would just sit there in the water and

Defeated and rusted.

dream of what the other vessels do every day. It just couldn’t gather up the courage to let go of its anchor, living with it, adjusting, gave up on the idea of change. Forgetting what it was made for.

When I was elected as the VPE of my club, it came with its challenges. I learned many things which no manual can teach you. Each role comes with their own challenges be at the meeting, contest or on the executive

Taking a break from toastmasters is

committee. I was reluctant to take up small

like harbouring your ship and making peace

roles, thinking I have done them all, I fell in

with a stubborn anchor and forgetting why

love with the shore and all I did was just sit

through the meetings. Until I challenged myself to contest again, win, lose, learn, become a part of ex-comm. I have

• Give speeches at other clubs • Be a part of the executive committee

rediscovered my sea and I’m ready to set sail

• Contest at the 2 annual competitions all the


more if you think it is not your cup of filter Have you been a victim of one such


anchor, stubborn, unwilling to change, forgot

• Plan an outing/outdoor meeting to lighten

what you always loved and lost interest in

up the mood and socialize

toastmasters? Get out of your home, leave

Do what it takes to take your ship out

your port, do things that you are not

of its harbour, leaving the stubborn anchor

comfortable doing


• Get a mentor who challenges you to

“Let not the anchor take the wind out


of your sail.

• Take part in table topics occasionally

- TM Faraz TCS Maitree Toastmasters Club

• Pick up an advanced manual just because you are not good at it

The Humor Factor

Sunny Leone once went to the medical store

2) Add Sus…pense: I am certain you

and bought herself a … medicine for

might have smiled on the pun. You


see, suspense is like the moment

Now that I have your complete attention, I request you to read my thoughts (please read, please). Humor is a simple five lettered word (well six lettered if you follow UK English). However, making someone laugh is serious business.

when you are at the diving board about to jump into the pool. If people get the joke from the word go, they would know what is coming. 3) Add Pause: A twist in the tale is best served when garnished with a pause. I don’t mean to ask you to add pauses

There are just two ways according to me that

everywhere, but before the punch or

you can be funny:

before your highlight.

Learn the joke

Learn the art

The problem with learning the joke is, you limit yourself to the words and it wouldn’t work with everyone. For example, my fatness can be a matter of amusement for you, but for my mother, it isn’t. She might just come

4) Support With Body Language: A joke on the television has higher chances to be funnier than a joke on the radio. You have your face and hands and legs, sometimes, to support your joke. Please be careful to not overdo it. 5) Be Convinced About The Joke: Don’t

and beat you (I know her). So, I am here to

treat the joke like the food that has

give you whatever art I know in this regard.

been forced on you to eat by your

1) Know Your Audience: Please understand that your milkman can understand a joke about a cow probably, but might not understand a

mother. If the joke isn’t appealing to you, you wouldn’t be able to deliver it well. 6) Use Your Peers: It is good to take an

joke about quantum physics.

opinion of two-three trusted friends

Similarly, a scientist may have things

on how the joke is. By trusted, they

the other way round. Channelize your

shouldn’t be someone who laughs at

jokes on the basis of the audience.


You see, some are born with the instinct of

keeping an eye on my word count. Connect

humor and some grow into becoming

with me and lets build a happier world

humorous. There is just one message from

(message is compulsory at the end).

me to all those who say “Humor is not my forte” or “I am horrible at humor” – you haven’t tried hard enough. You don’t have to

Until next time, Virat Mehta and Sunny signing off.

lose heart if no one laughs, you just have to

Keep laughing, cheers

gain heart to ensure you keep trying.

- TM Virat Mehta

There are many more things which I could have mentioned, but the editor has been

TCS Maitree Chennai Toastmasters Club

An Interview with a Comic Comedian Sahil Shah – East India Comedy

1. How would you use comedy or humour to aid social awareness? I usually crack jokes so people are aware about our existence. We talk about things that other people don't talk about and in the form of a joke we give out a message so that's great. 2. How did you become a comic, was it a well thought out decision or did you stumble into it? Stumbled onto it. Started performing in college. Did it as a joke and well now it's my job. 3. Sahil Shah is always seen wearing a bow tie at every show. So we asked him what’s so special about 'the bow tie?' It’s just a style. I think it makes me look smarter! 4. Who are your inspirations in the comedic world? God. He's the best comedian. 5. What's so great about SnapChat? Short videos. Direct access to fans plus filters that let you be absolutely crazy.

Comedian Mala (Annamalai Lakshmanan) – Tanglish Comedy

1. What drove you to choose humor out of all the other entertainment factors?

Answer – Comedy is a great healer. It can heal hurt, pain, loss, fill a void, etc. A Standup comic can make you look at hurt and pain differently; he/she can make you laugh it off. Thereby life becomes light and you get a new perspective to deal with the heaviness of life. Comedy is also highly relatable. A comic can make you feel that – no matter how different we may look, we all have similar anger, frustration, problems, worries, concerns, happiness, sadness, etc. and thereby he/she can make you feel that we all are one. Lastly, good comedy can genuinely make one happy and enrich the soul. For all these reasons, Comedy is one of the noblest professions and art forms in the world. And thus, I chose Comedy. 3. How do you think a humorous outlook helps in everyday life? While writing sets for Standup comedy a few months back, I had written down this line - No matter what our sorrows, we should be able to laugh at it. Laughter is a great medicine. All people have problems, pain, worries in life. But someone who has a great sense of humor is definitely going to deal it in one of the best ways possible. With humor, everything would become light and playful. 4. Tell us about a show that you will always remember

My 1st ever Standup comedy show. It was at St. Mark’s School, Adambakkam, to children of all sections in 6th, 7th and 8th standards. And it rained that day, right when I began the performance.

5. What is the kind of humor that works for you, e.g. dry, slapstick, self-deprecating? Although I am a fan of most genres/styles of comedy, storytelling and social commentary are my most personal styles of comedy. I believe incidents are humor and I try to recreate them on stage and put the audience in the situation where those comical incidents happened. 6. How does the full-time comedian career work? That’s a very tough question to answer. But a very important question as well. Currently, I feel Chennai only has 3-4 full time Standup Comedians. Everyone else has a day job and Comedy is just 20-30% of their lives. But considering the talent some of these Comics have, it is a pity they are not able to do comedy full time. But the market and the industry are growing. As for me, I teach freelance. And I am (almost) a full time comedian. It is not easy. But someone has to make the big sacrifice and it’s me. But I feel it’s worth it and that it would all pay off in days to come. 7. Has there been a show where you had a really tough audience? If so, how did you get them to laugh? Oh so many shows. Some audience members would be sitting right in the middle and staring at you throughout the show till you say – “sorry sir ... that wasn’t me” or something. Some audience are afraid of laughing out loud. They fear being judged by other audience members. While some at the show are still thinking about their bosses and have a grim face. During the initial days, comics may tend to blame the audience for not laughing. But with maturity you realize, the audience are never to be blamed. The audience are never wrong or bad. As a comic, the responsibility to make them laugh is totally yours. In a circumstance where the audience finds it difficult to smile, the very fact that they have turned up for your show is credit to them and no matter what, now your job as a comic is to make them laugh. I don’t believe in the phrase – forgetting worries. Because, if comedy is making someone forget worries, they would start remembering the worries, the moment they go back home. Good comedy is in the healing of worries, not just forgetting. 8. How would you use comedy or humor to aid social awareness? Comedy is a great art form for social sensitization. Come to think of it, everything in the world is politics. People say – “politics is dirty.” But everything in the world is political. From the air you

breathe to the water you drink, from the tax you pay to the debt India has with World Bank, from the rag pickers on the streets to the multi crore bungalow owning Richie rich, everyone and everything is interconnected by politics. And good comics especially over the years when they begin to have a voice, start talking about social issues and politics. They give you newer perspectives to look at issues and also newer perspectives of the truth which is often hidden from you. Thereby Comedy becomes a great tool of sensitization and sharing. 9. How did you become a comic, was it a well thought out decision or did you stumble into it? The first ever video I saw in YouTube was a Standup Comedy video in 2006. I saw Rodney Dangerfield and Russell Peters videos. The moment I saw them, I was hooked. Deep down, I knew this is something I would love to do in life. But it took me 9 more years before I finally started doing it. 10. Who are your inspirations in the comedic world? Gnanasambandam, Cho Ramasamy, GnaniSankaran, MR Radha, Koundamani, George Carlin, Louis CK. 11. How difficult will it be to be a professional comic? Could you tell us about that journey so far? It is quite tough. But then we are at the beginning of a giant revolution. By the time I die, Comedy would be a big industry in India. So, we are the initial bunch of people who are laying the road for it. In a matter of the next 2-3 years, you would see more and more full time Comedians from our city. 12. A lot of comics work off of the crowd's reactions to their material, what would you do if the

crowd did not react to your jokes? Crowd reaction – whether good or bad affects most comics. A professional comic is one who sticks to his routine, irrespective of crowd reaction. But that comes with experience only. I, for one, believe that even if the crowd is not laughing at a single joke or line, I would go onto complete my set/routine. Because one thing I promise to myself and the audience is – completion of my routine. Even on a day when they don’t laugh, they would at least have some information/content to take back home. But that’s only on those rare bad days. Just being informative means you have failed as a comic. No excuses. You have to make the audience laugh. no matter what. That’s why it takes decades to perfect Comedy.

13. Have you done a public speaking performance where humor was not involved? If so, could you tell us about it? Quite a few. I have been to many colleges and schools. When I talk, I believe I share. I never preach, I just share my thoughts, views, experiences. I focus on that one bit – sharing. 14. What is your favorite thing about Chennai? The beaches. Every beach in Chennai – Marina, Bessy, Thiruvanmiyur has a character of its own. And no matter which mood you are in, no matter how many people you are with – lonely or with your gang of friends, the beach is always a great hang out spot. 15. We've always read that introductions and conclusions should be the highest points of any live show - what is your opinion? Yes, in comedy circles, there is a belief that – a show or a performance should begin with a high and end with a high. I am not a big believer in that. I feel a performance should reflect life. And I believe life is full of highs and lows and you don’t often now what is coming next. I believe a show or performance should be similar. It should take its own course. 16. Have you ever experienced stage fear? If so, how did you get past it? Heart beat pounding faster, butterflies in the stomach, nervous energies, adrenaline. It’s there for all. To the best of the best. But, personally, because of my theatre experience and training, I have broken all my shackles long back. Theatre prepares you for any-time action. Like a doctor or nurse who would quickly jump to first aid when they see someone caught in an accident or emergency, a theatre person is ready for a performance anytime, anywhere. That’s the power of being trained in theatre. 17. What is your dream stage to eventually perform on? Lady Andal Auditorium, Chennai. 18. Advice to follow for those who would love to enter open mic arena? Advice is a bad word. Don’t take it from anyone. But If I were to share something from my experiences, OPEN MIC is a great platform to hone your skill. The only way you would know if you are good at something or not is by trying it. Not just sitting and thinking, thinking and thinking and just talking about it. Come out there and try it. No better platform than an OPEN MIC for it. And

once you get the taste of laughs, claps and cheer, you would be hooked to it forever. Welcome. Annamalai is a theatre artist, entrepreneur, started Tanglish Comedy with another comic. Tanglish comedy meets every Wednesday at Superstar pizza, besant nagar for Open Mics. Tanglish Comedy is delivering Corporate shows and associated workshops. For bookings/enquiry, reach out to us at OR message us on this page OR call/whatsapp 9884523897 (Mala)

Comedian Jagan – Chennai Comics 1. What drove you to choose humor out of all the other entertainment factors? Audience. The feedback is instantaneous. Even if you practice for hours on end you still cannot predict how the audience would respond. It’s the instant gratification that you get out of making people happy. 2. Tell us about your first public speaking experience (be it comedy or anything else) School Tamil Oratorical competition. Loved every moment of it. The fact that everyone was listening to me just because I was speaking in a mic was something that I cherish even today. 3. How do you think a humorous outlook helps in everyday life? Sometimes yes. Not always. 4. Tell us about a show that you will always remember My first ever gig that I did outside my company to a set of 45 strangers. 5. What is the kind of humour that works for you, e.g. dry, slapstick, self-deprecating? Anything as long as it is funny. But mostly self-deprecation.

6. How does the full-time comedian career work? Full time comedians don’t work ;) 7. Has there been a show where you had a really tough audience? If so, how did you get them to laugh? Yes. Didn’t bother making them laugh. There is no use in forcing humour into people who aren’t interested. We’ve to respect the audience. 8. How would you use comedy or humor to aid social awareness? I’ve never used one. But If I had to I’ll obviously point out the absurdities in our quotidian tasks so that we can rethink how to utilize time better. 9. How did you become a comic, was it a well thought out decision or did you stumble into it? Just gave it a shot during an audition in my company. Still going hopefully strong 10. Who are your inspirations in the comedic world? Many. I can’t name drop everyone of them but the people who I really like or admire are Frankie Boyle, Andy Kaufman, Groucho Marx, Cho. Ramasamy, and Ku.Gnanasambandhan 11. How difficult will it be to be a professional comic? Could you tell us about that journey so far? Am not a professional comic so I can’t answer this. 12. A lot of comics work off of the crowd's reactions to their material, what would you do if the crowd did not react to your jokes? Simple. Accept your defeat and laugh at yourself. There is no use in getting angry at the audience who aren’t at fault. 13. Have you done a public speaking performance where humor was not involved? If so, could you tell us about it? In school. I gave a speech on diving aspects of tamil literature and received a standing ovation for few minutes. I still remember that I was in state of confusion whether to leave the stage or wait for the applause to end.

14. What is your favorite thing about Chennai? The memories associated with it. 15. How do you find humour in the most mundane aspects of life? It stems out of frustration, spotting redundancy or idiocy in the actions that we do or see. How to make it humorous is a skill that we need to acquire through constant practice. 16. We've always read that introductions and conclusions should be the highest points of any live show - what is your opinion? It is a popularly accepted notion for sure. But there is more to it. In corporate lingo we use a term called “takeaway”. I think that can be applied to live shows as well. 17. Have you ever experienced stage fear? If so, how did you get past it? Not many times as am a well-known attention monger :P … but I get afraid whenever I’m not prepared 18. What is your dream stage to eventually perform on? Music Academy 19. Do you feel elated or nervous before a show? What do you do to prepare yourself for it? Mixed feelings. Elated because am getting a spl opportunity amongst many others. Nervous because I shouldn’t squander it. I focus only on preparation and delivery of the content that am going to perform. That alleviates most of my fears. 20. Advice to follow for those who would love to enter open mic arena? Enter.

- Interview by TM Ganesh TCS Maitree Alpha Toastmasters Club

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Division G - Impressions