Vol. 2 Paris Speech Masters
PSM started as an advanced club in March 2011, and I attended their third demo-meeting in April that year.
I was most impressed!
Like Toastmasters of Paris, most members are seasoned and adept English speakers. Among them, I could win the best table topics speaker award,,! I pinched myself really hard. But I was there. It was my biggest moment and an unbelievable dream came true.
In PSM, everybody could respond to twisted and surprising questions remarkably well, as if rehearsed for a hundred times!
Also, evaluations were all so meticulously analyzed and sparkling with tactful and authentic words and expressions.
I knew I needed much more seasoning in my skill set before joining PSM,,.
Between 2011 and 2013, I lived in Kyoto as well, so I decided to train myself to the best of my ability in Japan!
To do so, I joined eight clubs in Kansai area in order to have more chances to be a “victim” in table topics session (They also say “table topics victim” in Europe and America!).
In autumn 2012, I represented “Speak-Up TMC in Nishinomiya”, and somehow became 3rd place award winner at District 76 table topics contest.
I couldn’t believe it!
Table topics session was always my nemesis, but I challenged myself.
The experience gave me confidence, and in the process of winning through club-level, area and division contests. I gained a knack of speaking about totally and utterly unprepared subjects (or, questions) without preparation.
I returned to Paris, and luckily won the best table topics award three times in a raw at meetings of PSM!
Unlike TMOP, PSM doesn’t have any English proficiency test, but membership applicants need to speak at least three times at Table Topics Session to show that he/she has a good command of English.
Grammarian pointed out my grammatical errors each and every time, but commended my way of answering questions saying it’s brisk and inventive.
Then I realized that even in Japan, I could improve impromptu speaking skills in English well enough with the help and assistance of fellow club members in Japan!.
I’m so grateful to you all, thanks a million!
Mind you, it’s not an absolute necessity to be in Europe or in America to make a notable improvement.
Only a few months after joining PSM, I could win 2nd place at district 59 (Entire Continental Europe at the time) humorous speech contest in autumn of 2013, mainly helped greatly by “Bob Mohl”, the founder of Paris Speech Masters.
The club was extremely supportive and frank with me,,,they said that my English pronunciation needed much improvement and my use of words was childish and imprecise,,,!
They videotaped my delivery three times, which they did during the meetings, and came to my apartment to discuss how to improve my speech draft and performance (facial expressions, vocal variety, pauses, etc) for hours.
It was such a great experience!
Many club members decided to attend the district contest in order to cheer me ON all the way to Budapest.
(” cheer up ” is not altogether correct. It has to be “Cheer ON” if you back up the speaker. Cheer up means console somebody,,,).
That was very encouraging!
The following year, they unanimously chose me as the club president which was such a pleasant surprise to me.
I served as PSM president for a year (2014-2015) surrounded by extremely high spirited professionals (professor, consultant, professional speaker, accountant ,graphic designer and lawyer, all of them from English speaking countries).
Presiding over EXCOM(Executive Committee Meeting) was such a big challenge.
They spoke so fast, used many elevated words and expressions which I did not understand from time to time.
Be that as it may, I kept my chin up, always smiled, trusted the club officers. PSM acquired 9 points of DCP and was awarded as one of the best clubs in Europe last year!
Paris Speech Masters is a dinner club, but the cost to attend is not so expensive, within 25 Euros in total.
Members are all kind, open-minded great speakers!
The meeting starts at ⭐️19:29!(not 19:30 in order to train attendees’ mind to become time-conscious) and ends at about 22:00.
They meet twice a month, the first and the third Tuesday (sometime the fifth, if there is any) at restaurant “ZANGO ” which is close to “Les Halles”, the centre of Paris.
(TM Sayaka Miyabayashi and TM Seiko Hoshikawa of Tokyo Metropolitan TMC visited the club in January this year!)