254th Meeting

By Chathuranga Amunugama

Blank white board without topics! Aren’t we going to talk about something?? The worst nightmare a Gavelier could experience!!   Demonstrating the quote “The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is practice”, the 254th Gavel meeting was mostly focused on the impromptu speeches of our talented speech Olympiad semifinalists. It was Timal Mohan who is one of the project chairs of the speech Olympiad who was appointed as the Toastmaster, and he explained the purpose of the meeting.

The round robin session was “hope for the best but prepare for the worst” and each member came up with lots of thoughts on the topic. After the round robin session came to a conclusion, Timal handed over the meeting to Merl Chandana who played the role of contest chair to give a more realistic experience for our contestants. There were some really interesting varieties of topics for the day. Timal did a splendid job on preparing the speakers for their impromptu speeches.

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, it was Rochelle who broke the silence of the meeting.  Rochelle started her speech with a catchy start and ended with a climax. Next it was Samavath who related his 1st romantic experience to the topic he got, “Everything happens for a reason”. He was able to succeed in stealing out attention towards his speech as it comprised of his personal experience. Then it was Samadhi who delivered an artistic speech on the topic “Real vs. Fake”.  Then Sandaru Seneviratne talked about day to day choices. In her topic “When I was coming today”, she was able to convey her message successfully through the metaphorical language. “All the foods were yelling Calories!! “, was a strong phrase she used at the beginning of her speech.

Life is not a bed of roses! But it is up to us to dodge all those negative impacts and bloom as beautiful roses and make this world beautiful. It was Sandaru Karunasiri who related Adolf Hitler’s quote “If you can’t beat the system; be the system” in to “If you want to make a difference; be the difference”. He did a really good job in embedding the message he wanted to convey through his topic “Be the change you want to see in the world”. It was really nice to hear his speech about his childhood and all the barriers he broke up until now.

The power is within us! It is our duty to use that power to make this world beautiful. Despite all the previous interesting speeches, Kasun, the next speaker, was able to leave something for the audience to think at the end of his speech. He pointed out that “Every reality is a product of a virtual fantasy”.

We all are same when we are small. We all have the same idea of becoming the person we want. When we were small, the world was our playground. But when we grow up we tend to forget that fact. So “if you want to do something, unless it is not hurting anyone, do it”. It was Ama, our next speaker’s message in her speech “When I was small”.

Besides all the theories we learnt so far, it was the 1st time we all heard the “Cockroach theory!” and Sapthika did a great job in elaborating that theory to the audience. She pointed out that “Cockroaches always approach to dark” and the scary part that they “always approach to its enemies”, and how it applies in our day to day life. She was successfully able to deliver her message on her topic, “my biggest concern for the future” through these visual images. Then as the last but not least, Thilina talked about the “Dead fish dilemma”. He was able to address an important issue in today’s society.

After all the Speech Olympiad semi- finalists spoke, it was Merl who invited the fellow Gaveliers to choose a topic and speak without being dead fishes. Chathuranga took the 1st chance of delivering a speech on the topic; “when I woke up” through his personal experience. “If you need relationship advice, Vibhanu is the best man to take advice, even though he is still single” that was the start of Malith’s speech. Malith actually filled the whole club with laughter. He was able to deliver a superb speech sarcastically but yet hilariously by taking the live face to face examples related to the topic “wisdom comes with experience”. At the end of his speech he was able to burst the audience in laughter by giving a suggestion to Vibhanu on the fact that that it is good to be in the field and get the practical knowledge too. At last Praveen talked about the recent Sri Lanka and Pakistan match in his topic; “A moment of silence”. Even when he was talking about that match in which Sri Lanka was defeated, it was obvious that it was truly a moment of silence. After Praveen’s speech it was Rosa’s duty to read out the timer’s report which he had done perfectly. Then Vibhanu did an amazing job on evaluating the speakers and advising them to make their speech more solid.

It will be an unforgettable experience for our fellow Gaveliers to face the Speech Olympiad semifinals and after all the comments and guidance, the 254th meeting was adjourned.

The role players for the day

  • Toastmaster-Timal Mohan
  • Table Topics Master-Merl Chandana
  • Timer-Kasun Rosa
  • Table Topics Evaluator-Vibhanu Arachchige