September 27 meeting in photos

Technology keeps improving.  A Toastmaster at Dnipro Hills introduced your webmaster to Google’s Picasa product for displaying pictures.  It is fantastic.  Here is a link to the best of the pictures from our meeting.

With pictures telling the story, there is not much else to say.  Kostya led a wonderful table topic session on relationships.  He asked questions about family relationships, relationships with one’s spouse, relationships and organizations like Toastmasters, relationships at work, and others I do not recall.  His questions evoked the kind of impromptu speeches we love to hear in Toastmasters.  The respondents were generally able to organize good answers and stay within the time limit.


President Tania presented Art news that is printed in the weekend magazine, a copy of which was in the recent Korrespondent newspaper.   I (Graham) mentioned that I had been to the Jewish studies offices at Kiev Mogilya university where they have several wonderful books on Jewish art from the early decades of the last century.

The meeting ended with a request for people to sign up for speeches next week, and there was already a fair agenda shaping up by the time we left.

Published in: on September 27, 2008 at 3:50 pm  Leave a Comment  

September 13 meeting notes

With Tanya still on the road, Olga presided over the meeting, with Lucy serving as Toastmaster.  She fills that role extraordinarily well.  We had four guests: Славик, Денис, Елена and Оксана.


Ekaterina Mezentzeva’s icebreaking speech did exactly what it should.  It told us who she is, where she is from, and what she is looking forward to in the future.  She was born on Valentine’s Day and 14 is her lucky number.


Valentina Karabaeva’s seventh speech focused again on the differences between men and women.  The seventh speech emphasizes research, and she had done her is thoroughly!  She had wonderful quotes and poems, as well as citations from learned journals from Harvard and elsewhere.  Her bottom line is that men and women are different.  We need to understand the differences, overcome them and learn to love them.


Yuriy chose technology as the theme for our table topics. 


First he asked Graham whether or not the Internet represented a threat to society.  Yes!  concurred Graham.  It is just like Valentina said in her talk.  Men and women have a hard enough time getting together in person.  Physically isolating ourselves in our bedrooms as we communicate by blogs does not represent social progress.  It shields us from the hard work of getting along with other people, especially people of the opposite sex.


Next he asked Masha whether or not cell phones represented real progress.  That is a hard question to think about; they’re such an integral part of our lives.  Masha discoursed well on the pros and cons, and concluded that on the whole they are good thing.


Kostya was unequivocal on the value of television.  It is terrible.  He called it the stupid box.  It wastes our time.  He says that children should not be exposed to it until they are at least seven years old, time enough to develop some resistance.


Olga doesn’t use an alarm clock.  They’re not a bad thing; they’re not a good thing.  To her they’re not a necessary thing.


Lucy told us she is devoting a lot of effort to finding a new place to meet.  Encourage everybody to keep an eye on the website for a new meeting location.  And that was the end of the meeting.  Well-organized and on time.

Published in: on September 14, 2008 at 4:13 pm  Leave a Comment  

September 6 Meeting Notes

Parkinson’s Law states that “work expands to fill the time available for its completion.”  ArtTalkers never seems to have a short meeting.  With only one scheduled speaker, we still managed to fill our time beautifully this lovely Saturday morning. 


As has been true all summer, people continued to arrive after the meeting and started and we wound up with a pretty appreciable crowd for a beautiful Saturday morning in late summer.  You can see it in our pictures


Olga Pogorelova filled in as president and also served as timer.  Choosing as are our ah-counter Valya, who just got her degree in education, fit Toastmaster Sergei Obukhov’s “back to school” theme perfectly.  Yuri was our grammarian.


Since he was the only scheduled speaker, Graham Seibert asked for a couple of extra minutes to explain his philosophy of PowerPoint.  He then used it to lead us through a presentation about his month with the Kayapó Indians in the Amazon Valley.


Liz Korotchenko chose “the future” as her table topics theme.  Sergei Plyasov presented his vision of the world in 2050.  Ukraine may or may not be here, but Ukrainians will!  Our guest from Toastcrackers, Zhenia (Eugene?) got what appeared to be as easier question: what would his own future be like?  He has explored several alternatives in three universities and it sounds as though he will be as surprised as anybody at where he finds himself in 20 years.  Lucy is sure that the club will thrive and grow, though she is not sure how long she will be able to stay with us.  Nastya got an interesting question: “does the future belonged to people who believe in their dreams?”  Yes, as long as they dream the right things — friendship and peace.  Lastly, Anya’s guest Alexei offered a positive view of the world many years from now, a world of collective consciousness, higher spiritual values, and greater happiness.


Alexei and Lucy spoke on “Art news,” upcoming art shows.  Lucy recommends that we read Afficha and What’s On, and she gave a glowing account of the art show currently at the Fulbright office, Khrushchevskovo 4.  Graham added that each presentation lasts a month; there will be a new show opening October 3.


Olga reminded us that we pay our dues in September.  It amounts to $36 for six months, payable to our Treasurer, Yuri Karabach.


After the evaluations, we adjourned.  Just in the nick of time, as always.

Published in: on September 8, 2008 at 3:55 am  Leave a Comment