Tuesday, December 8, 2009

What a relief!

Have you looked at your phone? Do you realize it's Toastmaster Tuesdays with Todd? Yes, I am going to the Toastmaster well one more time. But for good reason today I think. I have been working on a manual called Technical Presentations. I could have done the projects in there on my field (programming) or one of my esoteric interests such as epistemology or astrophysics. But instead, I decided to do something more accessible to everyone. So I decided to do all five of them on music. For three of the five I selected music theory-related topics. Those three topics were harmony, rhythm, and melody. Harmony in this case is not referring to 2 or 3 people singing together but the chord progression that make up the structure of a song. I came up with this anatomical analogy to describe what those three things are:
  • Harmony is like a song's skeleton. It provides the structure that everything else hangs off of.
  • Rhythm is like a song's muscles. It makes the song move.
  • And melody is like a song's eyes or better yet, its soul. It is through the melody that we connect with the song.
Today I completed the fifth and final project from the manual by (trying to) explain what goes in to writing a melody. In 15 minutes. I also wrote some preparatory material that you can read here if you like. It was a difficult project but I'm pretty happy with what I came up with. I brought my keyboard in and played (and sang!) because it's pretty hard to talk about music, melody in particular, without some demonstrations. Photobucket Have you ever noticed that everything is better with cake? Well guess what, we had cake at our meeting! Photobucket Chocolate with raspberry filling and carrot with cream cheese frosting. Photobucket Pretty and delicious from VG Bakery. For the last several days I have been cooking every meal at home. But after completing my speech, I decided tonight was a good night to take a break and eat out. So Listgirl met me after work and we headed out to Pacifica in Del Mar and enjoyed the lovely food there. We had purchased a gift certificate so our meal was discounted. (We paid $2 for the certificate, its value was $25.) Photobucket That's the ocean behind me but I bet you can't see it. Photobucket The cutest girl in the restaurant and her Muppet pelt sweater. And now I am done with the Technical Presentations manual! Three more speeches and I will achieve Advanced Communicator Gold. I won't have another project that takes this much preparation for a while. Now I can start looking forward to holiday vacations and relax. What a relief!


  1. Hey Congrats!!! Love that you guys had cake at the meeting. I would've gone for the carrot & cream cheese one. :)

    You and Listgirl seem to make a great team. :)

    While you guys had your tsunami rains the other day we got hit with our first real snowstorm in the NE. I work at our HS so it was a snow day for us! :) If only I didn't have strep... oh well.

  2. Muppet pelt...hahahahahaha..

    (Please tell Listgirl that I like the sweater...just laughing at your description...that I totally don't agree with..oh my, I've worked myself into a hole..)

    Let's change the subject..

    Congrats on your presentation. I'm always impressed that you prepare these for fun and not just for work. I'm also impressed that a group of folks meet to learn all kinds of new stuff. That's one of my favorite things about homeschooling...a second chance to learn all the stuff I missed because I was busy passing notes and talking. :D

    Always enjoy your posts!!

  3. Sounds like you put a lot of work and effort into this project, and I'm glad you are happy with the result. And the cake sure looks yummy! =)

  4. wow congrats Todd!! So keep on - I´ll cross my fingers for the next three speaches.

    Cool sweater - sure it is good for cold days like ours today we had 3 degrees below zero


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