Roberta Perry kicked off her first meeting as club President in the new Toastmasters year, today, by introducing John Liebling as the inspiration behind, what turned out to be, one of our club’s more unusual meetings: A Renaissance Speakers “Tall Tale Extravaganza.” In fact, John Liebling wore the hat of Contest Chairman and presided over two contests as part of today’s meeting.
The presentations could be categorized as humorous, whacky, zany and certainly entertaining.
According to Carolyn S. Brown in The Tall Tale in American Folklore and Literature, a tall tale is “a fictional story which is told in the form of personal narrative or anecdotes, which challenges the listener’s credulity with comic outlandishness, and which performs different social functions depending on whether it is heard as true or as fictional.” Today’s presentations could also have been more informally characterized as a pair of “Liars Contests.”
The meeting comprised three primary parts, including table topics presentations (short, off-the-cuff speeches) in addition to two speech contests.
Two Tall Tales Contests in One Day
- Prepared Tall Tales Speech Contest
- Impromptu Tall Tales Speech Contest
First Place Contestants
- Michael Wadler took first place in the Prepared Tall-Tales Speech Contest
- Jeff Harman took first place in the Impromptu Tall-Tales Speech Contest
Michael Wadler presented a humorous and incredible tale, regarding a meeting with God. Click the following link to watch Michael’s prize-winning presentation: THE JOB OFFER.
Jeff Harman’s prize-winning impromptu speech was an entertaining, out-of-this-world tale about how he saved humanity from disaster. Click the following link to watch Jeff’s presentation: HOW I SAVED THE WORLD.
Prepared Tall Tales Speech Contestants
Impromptu Tall Tales Speech Contestants
Special thanks to Table Topics Master, Michael Baron; Judges, Naomi Conners and Bobbi Wood; Timer, Richard Stewart; Camera Person, Kathy Oliver; “Silly Club Coaching” by George Alger; and Cliff Noble as the club Music Man.