Friday, December 30, 2011

Political Symbols

I attended the IEM Toastmasters meeting last evening. Not unexpectedly, I was co-opted to take on a Speech Evaluator’s role – and, not surprisingly, I won the Best Evaluator Award. However, this meeting didn’t turn out well - it had carelessly allowed time to run amok and so the whole meeting agenda swiftly flew out of the window. I noticed that the Grammarian and the Timekeeper left even before the meeting ended – this does not speak well of their club members. But then again, this reinforces the importance of time management. Really, the Sergeant-at-Arms, the Toastmaster-of-the-Evening and the Timekeeper should take the blame for this runaway meeting. A President’s Distinguished Club shouldn’t have permitted this to happen in the first place! I have said my piece and I am awarding this meeting a lowly score of 3 out of a 10!

This was my last Toastmasters meeting for the 2011 year and meticulously checking my records, I found out that I have made 145 club visits – counting only the regular meetings – in 46 different Toastmasters clubs. The passion for Toastmastering burns brightly inside of me!

Elections have come to Egypt! Voting is under way in the first elections since Hosni Mubarak was toppled in February 2011. With democracy coming out into the sunshine, many people with political ambitions are offering themselves to the citizenry.

Every aspiring candidate has been assigned a symbol (or brand, if you must call it) by the election authorities – a crucial tool on polling day in a country where at least a third of voters are illiterate. The logo appears on their posters and it will be on the ballot paper too.

This is not unlike in Malaysia – except that in Egypt, they’re seeing a really long list of parties, each with its own logo – it can be a traffic light, a food blender, a vacuum cleaner, a ballistic missile, and many more.

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