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*a pic I took of a speaker at Speakers Corner, Hyde Park, London*

Below is the script (which I didnt really follow in the end) of the first and last speech (malas to go for the meetings after that) that I delivered at the SC Toastmaster Club meet up some 2 years plus ago. The first speech any member delivers is called the Ice Breaker (for obvious reasons).

Anyway, tot I’d post this up, cos i am not really in the mood to compose anything at d mo, but have this compelling need to feed my blog.

Please bear in mind, that this script was for verbal delivery, so some of the sentences sound better when you hear it, rather than read it. The title of my speech was “If Only”. 5 minutes speech. I think somewhere in the middle of the speech, I actually said “Mr Speaker” haha, a habit I pixcked up after years of debating.

 If Only

  • Madam Toastmaster

Ladies and Gentlemen

 

  • I don’t intend to deliver a resume like speech; I tell you where I was born, my alma maters, and what’s my favorite pass time. For me the best way to get to know someone is by getting a little personal. So I’d like to share two of my most valuable experiences growing up, as well as some of my thoughts about this rat race. A little touch of the past and future.

 

  • When I was 9 years old, at the time I attended the Bukit Bintang Girls School. A fabulous school! It was located opposite the Star Hill Shopping Center, a very strategic location (I know) for a school. They tore the building down a few years ago.

 

  • But that’s not the story. When I was 9, my dad got me started on essay writing. He bought me a huge writing pad. The highlight of this essay writing exercise was the title of the essays I was requested, wait instructed to write. It wasn’t the typical-9-year-old essay topics, my favorite teacher, my pet, where did I go on my last family holiday. The titles my dad chose were far from typical. I got titles like, matchbox, wallpaper, towel, soap, and chair. The first thing I said to my Dad was “write about towels? What is there to write about? A towel is just that, a towel” And he wanted it to be two pages long, mind you that it was a huge writing pad.

 

  • So I wrote essay after essay, cracked my little head, tried to find ideas to fill those two pages. When I got older I realized what my dad was trying to do. He wanted me to think out of the box. It wasn’t enough to write that towels came in different shapes and sizes. I had to use my creativity, stretch my thoughts. And this I felt was the best mental exercise that my dad taught me. I find myself being able to be multidimensional in my thought process (at least I hope I am).

 

  • When I have children I’ll buy them a huge writing pad too and the first title for their essay will be, you guessed it right, towel.

 

  • Just before we get to the present day, lets stop at 1996, when I was fifteen, I joined a theatre group called Five Arts, similar to the likes of the Actors Studio and Instant Café, I considered myself very “arty-farty” then.

 

  • My mother made sure I attended every rehearsal and performed my best for every workshop or play. I was exposed to everything from puppetry skills to classical dance. It was extremely exciting! One of my most memorable plays was when I performed a play entitled “The Sky Is Falling Down” at the 1996 ASEAN Wetlands Convention. One of the reasons why it was memorable was because my costume was my primary school uniform, I was fifteen, and so the skirt was ultra short! The experience I had was amazing! Plus I got to whisper into the ear of the then Prime Minister, Dr Mahathir, it was part of the play. Had to run down from the stage and ask him “Have you seen my brother?” Proud moment there.

 

  • There’s a popular saying that a child is like a plain white cloth. I agree with that saying. One of the few strokes of colors that you get on that piece of cloth will be from your parents and your environment. My parents always took the opportunity or made it a point to make sure that I got more than what the curricular activities after school could offer, some exposure to art, creative thinking, which has really influenced me, I love antiques, catch a play or two when I have the time, absolutely love the Balinese Gamelan, and I have a Degree in Economics. So my cloth has the black and white, basic primary colors as well as lime green, fuchsia, and greenish blue! With one’s personality, having a lot of colors is not tacky.

 

  • Having said that, I guess you must be wondering as to why I picked the title “if only”. This is where I’d like to share some of my thoughts on the future and life generally. This is the first meeting of the year. So I’m in the mood for some talk on New Year resolutions. Well the phrase “if only” stinks of regret. At least in my opinion. I have a few if only’s : If only I spent more time studying I would have graduated with better results, If only I drank more milk, I would have probably been taller, If only I spent less on shoes I could buy more bags.

 

  • I think the best way to move forward and face this rat race is to make sure that everyday you don’t create an “If only” for the future. To work hard and strive to be the best at what you do, spend as much time as you can with your children or parents, eat right and lead a healthy lifestyle so that on one not-so-fine day you won’t find yourself waking up and saying “If only I stopped smoking earlier I probably wouldnt have contracted lung cancer”. Of course we can’t run away from regrets but I think it’s quite possible to minimize them.

 I think my time is about up..

 

  • So far this year I don’t think I’ve created any “if only”s…ladies and gentlemen have you?

 

 

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