Joke/Gruntmaster

RESPONSIBILITIES:

To present a clean, non-sexist, non-religious, non-racist joke.

To listen carefully to all the people who speak during the meeting.

To evaluate the use of unnecessary words that destroy the effectiveness of our presentations.

To levy fines for extraneous words (5¢ each to a maximum of 25¢). Non-Toastmaster guests and keynote speakers are always exempt from fines.

THINGS TO WATCH FOR AS GRUNTMASTER:

It will help if you list all the people in the room in the order in which they are seated. This will provide a map of the room and is much more organized when it is time for your report. Your assistant can then proceed to each person as you call out their fine. Note the different kinds of bad habits that people have incorporated into their speaking style. For example, superfluous phrases such as “I think”, “I feel”, if not used in proper context can weaken speech!

Note how often people repeat words such as “you know”, “ah”, “um”, “er”, or the use of unnecessary “ands” to fill pauses.

Record diligently and RUTHLESSLY. Guests who are Toastmasters, even if he/she is an Area Governor, will appreciate knowing.

THE PRESENTATION:

AS JOKEMASTER:

Briefly explain the Joke/Gruntmaster role. Explain the fining system that will be used. Speakeasy usually fines 5¢ for each grunt or unnecessary word to a maximum of 25¢. You may also fine a member for not wearing a name tag (50¢) or for arriving at the meeting late (25¢). Members can reduce their fines by 5¢ for each use of the “Word of the Day” in a sentence.

Present your joke.

AS GRUNTMASTER:

At the beginning of your presentation, it is helpful to ask members to have change ready. Arrange for the Sergeant-At- Arms to collect the fines while you concentrate on the evaluations. Reading from your notes in seating order will speed up collections.

Keep the report light, but make it concise. You have only two minutes in which to make your presentation. Include the offence and the fine: “two ‘ahs’, two ‘you knows’ for a total of 20¢.

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