Dec 26, 2007

Toastmaster (Word of the Day, 2007/12/19)

By Alan Lin
noun: toast
►Sliced bread that has been heated so that it is brown on both sides and no longer soft.
--I had a piece of toast for breakfast.
--French toast (often known as eggy bread in the UK) is made with bread and eggs.
►A call to a gathering to honor someone or something by raising glasses and drinking.
--I’d like to propose a toast to the bride and groom.
►An act of raising a glass and drinking in honor of somebody or something.
--We drank a toast to innocence. We drank a toast to now, and tried to reach beyond the emptiness. But neither one knew how.
►Somebody or something honored by a toast
--The first toast drunk after dinner was to its success.
►Congratulatory speech
--Wedding toast
--So this is the toast I would like to make to you: ‘May your love be modern enough to survive the times and old-fashioned enough to last forever.’

►Admired person
--Be the toast of Broadway/Hollywood
--Ang Lee is the toast of Hollywood.
►Very warm and comfort
--Warm as toast
--They sat near the fire, warm as toast.

►To be in trouble because of something you have done
--Be toast
--If you don't get your homework done in time, you're toast!

verb: toast, toasted, toasted
►To make bread or other food brown by placing it close to heat.
--I lightly toasted two pieces of bread for breakfast.
►To sit near a source of heat to warm the body or a part of the body
--He was toasting his feet by the fire.
--He lay toasting in the sun.

►To drink in honor of somebody or something.
--We toasted the bride and bridegroom.

adjective: toasty
►Warm and comfortable
--Are you in need of a toasty home this winter?

noun: toaster
►A machine you use for toasting bread.

noun: toastmaster
►Someone who introduces the speakers at a formal occasion such as a banquet.
--Kevin selected Nina to preside at the banquet as toastmaster.

noun: Toastmaster(appliances)
►The name of one of the world’s first automatic electric toasters for home use.
►A brand of toasters and other small kitchen appliances. The brand changed hands several times and finally went public in 1992 as Toastmaster, Inc.

noun: Toastmasters/ Toastmasters International (TI)
►A nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills.

noun: Toastmaster
►A member of Toastmasters Club.
--I am proud to be a Toastmaster and I know you are too.

Brief history of TI
►In October 1924, Dr. Ralph C. Smedley formed the first Toastmasters club in the basement of the YMCA in Santa Ana, California, U.S.A.
►In 1962, TI moved into its first World Headquarters building in Santa Ana.
►In 1990, TI moved into its new World Headquarters building in Rancho Santa Margarita, California.

Nov 24, 2007

Advertise (Word of the day, 2007/11/21)

By Steve Chang

1. To make (something for sale, service offered, room to rent, etc.) known to the public, as in a newspaper, or on television.
2. To ask (for someone or something) by placing an advertisement in a newspaper, shop windows, etc.

Meaning of a word
1. v.t.
To advertise goods for sales.
To advertise a house for rent.
I advertised him of my plan.
2. v.i.
to advertise for a job
People often advertise for a servant in the newspaper.
It pays to advertise.
To advertise oneself.
Advertisement helps to sell goods.
Advertiser (advertizer)
1. n.
To secure customers by advertising.
2. adj.
Advertising agency
Advertising rate

Nov 8, 2007

Gratitude (Word of the day, 2007/11/7)

By Henry Ke
—The feeling of being grateful.
Tears of gratitude filled with his eyes.
How to Use
Children had a deep gratitude towards parents.
—{in gratitude for sth.}
Will you let me take you out to dinner tomorrow in gratitude for what you have done.
—{with gratitude}
Refugees accepted charity organizations help with gratitude.

Oct 28, 2007

Wonders (Word of the day, 2007/10/17)

By Angela Yu
►wonder (n.)
It was a wonder that _____ managed to come at all----Unbelievable! She is so busy nowadays.
I shall never forget the look of wonder on her face the first time it snowed.
The wonders of modern technology
The Seven Wonders of the World

►wonder (v.)
I wonder what she will look like.

►wonderful (adj.)
A: “Guess what?” I have got a job at last.
B: “Wonderful!”

►wonderfully (adv.)
Dr. Landy says you are doing wonderfully well.

►wonderland (n.)
He went into the old lady’s house and found himself in wonderland.

►wonder child
►wonder drug

►wonder-stricken (and.): very surprised

►no wonder (little wonder, small wonder)
You were late this morning and no wonder, considering that you had passed such a terrible night.

►a nine days’ wonder
The singer is a nine days’ wonder. She is popular and interesting for a short time.

Sep 20, 2007

Communicate (Word of the day, 2007/9/19)

By James Wang
verb: communicate, communicated, communicating
►to transfer
A stove communicated heat to a room.
►to pass through, to lead to
This door communicates with my room.
►to attract
These are old plays that have long since lost their ability to communicate with an audience.
►to give a share of information, knowledge; to convey the knowledge of
I will communicate it with the studious of physical science.
I communicated with him by gesture.
►to interchange thoughts or opinions
We communicated with each other for years.
Television communicated the news to all country.

noun: communication
►conveying or exchange of ideas, knowledge, information, thoughts.
The communication of news by e-mail is very common in this modern society.
The telephone communication was cut off during the storm.
I am in communication with him on this subject.
►to pass through, to lead to
There is no communication between the two rooms.
►communicate a disease
Spitting in the street leads to the communication of disease.
►communication engineering;
Engineering with the sending and receiving of signals by means of electrical or electro acoustic device and electro magnetic waves.
The ministry of communications. Communications satellite.

noun: communicator
►a person who works with or on methods or devices used in communication or facilitating communication.
adjective: communicative
►able to talk easily to other people, talkative
He had headaches and isn’t feeling very communicative today.
adjective: communicable
►able to be communicated
Happiness and Knowledge could be communicable to each other.
Ideals are communicable by words or pictures.

communicable disease
►an infectious disease transmissible from person to person, animal to person by direct contact with an affected individual or his discharges
Conjunctivitis is a communicable disease, however cancer is not.
compare: contagious disease

Sep 8, 2007

Sincere (Word of the day, 2007/9/5)

By Alan Lin
1. real; not pretend; earnest; based on what is truly and deeply felt
• I wish to express sincere appreciation to the many individuals who have offered support, inspiration, and encouragement throughout this research effort.
• You have my sincere apology.
• Both President Bush and Secretary of State Powell have expressed their sincere regret over your missing pilot and aircraft.”
•I regret the loss of her sincere friendship.
2. honest and unaffected in a way that shows what is said is really meant
•He is a decent and sincere person.
3. pure; unmixed; whole; perfect; unhurt
• sincere wine
4. solemn
• He always maintains his sincere, serious demeanor.

Inflected Form(s): sincerer; sincerest

1. in an honest and straightforward way
• I sincerely hope you will come with us.
2. Yours sincerely used immediately before the signature to end a letter that is addressed to somebody by name
•Dear John,
Oh, how I hate to write!
I must let you know tonight that my love for you has died away, like grass upon the lawn. And tonight I wed another.
Yours sincerely,

Sincerity = Sincereness
1. an earnest and sincere feeling; seriousness
• Misfortune tests the sincerity of friends.
2. the quality or state of being sincere; honesty in the expression of true or deep feelings; freedom from simulation, hypocrisy, disguise, or false pretense
• He is a man of sincerity.
3. a quality of naturalness and simplicity;
• the simple sincerity of folk songs
4: the trait of being serious;
• We do have an expectation that you are entering into this sacrament with great seriousness and sincerity.

• insincere, adj.
• insincerely, adv.
• Insincerity, n.

Aug 16, 2007

Introspect (Word of the day, 2007/8/15)

BY Rebecca Chou

v.i. / v.t.
look into one's own thoughts and feelings to find out their real meaning, the reasons for them, etc.
ex)We are different from animals because we can introspect our own thoughts and behaviors.

ex) Through introspection, we may find out our values of living.

ex) Don't be too introspective about yourself or you will think it's all your fault.

Other familiar words
aspect = appearance (n.)
inspect= examine (v.)
inspection (n.)
respect (v. / n.)
respectively= individually (adv.)
respectable income (adj.)
respecting to= regarding

Aug 12, 2007

Water Conflict

C7 spech by Kevin Chuu
When I say water is essential and don't take it for granted, you may think I am a Green-Peace, and is going to make a fuss over a trifle again. If I say water can cause conflicts and wars, you might believe I am a scaremonger. Someone will even react like "Come on, man! We are living on a water planet, and 70percent of earth's surface is water." That is correct. But the fact is only 3 percent of it is drinkable, while only 1 percent is easily accessible surface fresh water. So the truth is water has become a scarce and precious resource on this water planet. People are fighting for it, and even go to war. Really?

Let me pick up a horrible example. Darfur, a parched land in the central Sudan, an appalling war is going on there now. Over the past four years, 200,000 people have been killed, and more than 2.5 million people have been displaced from their home. This is the so called the first genocide in the 21st century. The real cause of the civil war in Darfur is water. According to the United Nations Environment Report, the rainfall in Darfur has decreased a third over the past 80 years because of global warming. Lots of lands have become deserts, but the population keeps growing. Different tribes fight for the water and land in order to survive.

The water conflict is a real thing proceeding in Darfur now, and it is not a local event. In the whole world, about one-sixth of the 6.1 billion people lack access to improved source of water, while 40 percent are without access to improved sanitation service. Each year, 3.4 million people, mostly children, die from water-related diseases. Do not think it will not happen in Taiwan. About the water issue in Taiwan, people got a very serious myth:

We got a lot of typhoons, so we have inexhaustible water.

The truth is thank to typhoons, the precipitation we got each year, I mean the rainfall, is 2.6 times the world average, however the fresh water each one can access is much lesser than the world average. We are a country lacking of water, and the situation is being exacerbated by the global warming. Here are the causes of our water problem:

1. Uneven rainfall
We have quite enough rainfall each year, but it does not distribute uniformly. The precipitation ratio of rainy season to dry season is 9 to 1, and most of the rain concentrates in the northern Taiwan. This situation is getting worse year by year because of global warming.

2. Too much population
23 million people crowd on this small island. Every one needs to consume water. Therefore, the fresh water each one can share is only about one-seventh the word average.

3. Too much pollution
It is not hard to understand. Too many people make too much pollution. 39% of our rivers are polluted, and the trend is not likely to slow down.

4. Too many cities, town, roads and other infrastructure
Those man-made buildings and structures, most of which are made of concrete and tar, cover large part of our ground surface. Therefore only very little rainwater can filtrate into our aquifer. Most of the rain water just cause flood, rushing into the ocean within a short time.

5. Too many high-water-consumption industries
For quite a long time, our country has developed too many high-water-consumption industries like steelmaking, papermaking, aqua-farming, petroleum-chemistry, and even high tech factories of TFT-LCD. Those industries consume too much fresh water and even underground water. In Tauyuan, the water level of aquifer has dropped to 46 meters.

Ladies and gentlemen, water resource is not a issue of tomorrow which only environment activist concern. It is a real issue now. Million of people are dying for it out there. It is not a problem we can just leave behind and let our children worry about. It is a reality we, including you and me, are going to face within a decade. We only need the determination and stop ignoring it. Otherwise, in Taiwan, a water conflict, I don't want to say another Darfur, is definitely going to happen in the recent future.

Aug 3, 2007

Tolerate (Word of the day, 2007/8/1)

By Ivan Chiang


=put up with
If you tolerate a situation, you accept them although you do not particularly like them.
–She can no longer tolerate the position that she's in…
–The cousins tolerate each other, but did not really get on well together.

If you can tolerate something unpleasant or painful, you are able to bear it.
-The ability to tolerate pain varies from person to person.


It is the quality of allowing other people to say and do as they like, even if you do not agree or approve of it.
–…his tolerance and understanding of diverse human nature.

It is the ability to bear something painful or unpleasant.
-There is lowered pain tolerance, lowered resistance to infection.

If someone or something has a tolerance to a substance, they are exposed to it so often that it does not have much effect on them.
–As with any drug taken in excess, your body can build up a tolerance to it.


If you describe someone as tolerant, you approve of the fact that they allow other people to say and do as they like, even if they do not agree with or like it.
–They need to be tolerant of different points of view…
–which include more tolerant attitudes to unmarried couples having children.

If a plant, animal, or machine is tolerant of particular conditions or types of treatment, it is able to endure them without being damaged or hurt.
-…plants which are more tolerant of dry conditions…
-Today's floppy disc drives are tolerant of poor quality discs.


If you describe something is tolerable, you mean that it is bearable, even though it is unpleasant or painful.
–He described their living conditions as tolerable.
–The levels of tolerable pain vary greatly from individual to individual…

If you describe something as tolerable, you mean that it is fairly good and reasonably satisfactory, but not of the highest quality or standard; a formal use.
–Is there anywhere tolerable to eat in town?

Please join in the related discussions at:

Jul 29, 2007

Norway _ A Small But Strong Country

C6 speech by Kevin Chuu


Ladies and gentlemen! I think some of the middle-edge members still remember this song and the cartoon it belongs to--The Little hero of The North Sea (北海小英雄). This story is talking about a young boy, though thin and little, using his wisdom to fight with the big bad pirates and hostile countries. If you got some history background, you should know this boy, let's call him Willy, was a little Viking. That means he was a Norwegian boy. He lived in today's Norway.

Here's another event also having something to do with Norway. Two weeks ago, the Apple Company hyped their new products, the iPhone, bloating how fancy it was, and how many people were rushing to buy it. An iPhone will cost you US$500 to 600 plus $36 for activating it. But four days later, as the Apple was sitting and waiting for the big money coming in, a young man called DVD Jon decode its activating code and post it on his blog to share with everyone. Therefore no one needs to pay that $36 any more.

From DVD Jon's viewpoint, the Apple Company and other software monopolies are using license code and other protecting measures to unfairly take money from our pockets. So he vowed to make those greedy companies open their source codes, otherwise he will just keep decoding their stuff. This man made me recall little Willy in the cartoon. And what a coincidence! DVD Jon is also a Norwegian, a pirate of intellectual property. It seems they just have the same blood and tradition.

Do you know how DVD Jon got his name? His real name is Jon Lech Johansen. When he was 15 years old, he decoded the protection program of DVD. Since then, everyone in the world could copy DVD by the program he shared. He was seen as a hero, and got the name of DVD Jon.

The messages, from either little Willy or DVD Jon, is that humble individuals us their personal efforts to fight with the major power in the world for what they believe right.

All of this just makes me admire their country, Norway. This country, just like little Willy and DVD Jon, is a small country with only about 4.7 million populations, locating in the desolate Scandinavia of Northern Europe. However thanks to the oil export, this country is very rich. Although their GDP is the second highest in the world, their society is basically modest, not extravagant at all. Unlike other super power in the world, they don't put their interest on the first priority. On the contrary, they see themselves as humanitarians. They bestow Nobel Peace Prize every year, promote land mine inhibition in UN and host peace talk between Israel and Palestinians.

However what really made me respect them was something happened recently. They have a public pension fund of about $330 billions, the biggest one in Europe. Norwegian government uses this fund to invest the major stock markets. But, last month, they kicked some US companies out of their investment list for ethical failing. That meant these companies, such as Wal-Mart, are making products by bad or immoral ways. Wal-Mart's suppliers, some of them from developing countries are accused for child labor violation. And the strategy did work, those international big companies, though exasperated, finally yielded and tried to clarify their connections with those notoriously wrong doings. Norwegians, the descendants of little Willy, have once again proved how a country can be small but strong.

I think Taiwan should get some inspiration from Norway. Maybe we are only a small player in the world, but we don't need to be a weak one. We can play wisely just like little Willy and DVD Jon. Therefore we can earn more respect and approval.

It is possible

C4 speech by Kevin Chuu

Ladies and gentlemen, today I want to tell you a story about success. "Sailing to success?" Of course not! I am not going to repeat the theme of last year’s fall convention. But it did inspire me to make this speech.

What is it? Wait a second. Look! Here's the picture of me three years ago, and this is the picture of me right now. Yes! It is possible! Can you tell the difference? 20 kilograms plus! Right! I am telling you how to loose fat successfully.

As you can see I got 20-kilogram extra weight before. Do you have any specific idea of 20 kilograms? Here's the 2 liter bottle of water which weighs 2 kilogram. 20 kilograms means ten of them. It’s just equal to this 20 liter water tank.

Can you imagine that I have kept carrying this water tank over my back 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for almost eight years? No matter when I walked, ran, climbed the stairs or even slept, I had to carry this tank. My heart, blood vessels, and other organs also had to support it every second without any break.

Eleven years ago I was a 66-kliogram young man with bright future and perfect body shape. I married with the woman I loved and got two lovely daughters. Everything went fine except my gradually increasing waistline. When I first noticed it, my wife and I had a thorough discussion about how it could happen. Here are the conclusions we've gotten:

1. Cook by ourselves
Being a newlywed, my wife and I cooked together to enjoy the romantic and harmonic feeling between husband and wife. That was fine except we both were rookie cooks who didn’t know how to control the volume. We always cooked too much and, of course! It was me who had the responsibility to finish it—eat them out.

2. To be a garbage trunk
The situation was getting worse after my babies came out, because I also had to finish their leftover. Especially the nutritious baby foods didn’t taste very good, and most of the time my kids couldn't finish them. So, being a daddy with traditional value of not wasting any food, I always crammed those foods into my belly unconsciously. Then just as they were touted in the TV commercials, I grew up! I mean I swelled together with my babies.

3. Too much pressure and lack of exercise
Because we had to work during the daytime and take care of kids at night, we both were exhausted and lack of exercise. In addition, the more I felt tired and pressured, the more I wanted to eat, and the fatter I became. It was just a vicious spiral.

4. wrong concept
When I was getting bigger, my wife also got some vigilance and warned me "Do not eat too much." My excuse was always "Oh! Please, Honey! Not like other bad guys, I don't have any lousy habits like smoking, drinking and gambling. May I just keep the humble and harmful pleasure to enjoy a little delicious food after a hard day of work?" Of course! My wife couldn't reject this pitiful request. But it was absolutely wrong. I mean my fault, because food could also kill me, and even faster than the alcohol and tobacco.

Therefore, day after day my waistline had expanded from 32 to 41 inches, and all my clothes had been changed from size M to XL. However I didn't take it very seriously until one day I stood on the scale.

I can still remember that very moment of my life, just like a slow motion of movie, the pointer swept to 90, shaking over there. My daughter exclaimed "Wow! Daddy, you are 90 kilogram! When will you reach 100?" My heart sank. To a little girl like her, 100 was a magic word which meant perfect. To me, it was a spell of bad omen. I could tolerate 80, maybe 85. 90! Unacceptable! 100! I would rather die.

I am not kidding. Because when I got the health check report, I knew it wouldn't be long if I didn't take any action. The report was bleeding—full of red marks such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol level, high urine acid and other high indices of various chronic diseases.

At last I made up my mind to reduce my weight. Making decision was always simple and easy, however, doing it was another story. It was a long and winding way full of funny and terrible experiences, and that will be my C5 speech next time. Mr. Toastmaster!

Jul 19, 2007

Appreciate (Word of the day, 2007/7/18)

By Ann Lee

Appreciate (transitive verb)
• To understand how good or how useful someone or something is
Ex: I do appreciate Rebecca's ability and aggressive manner.

•To be grateful for something that someone has done.
Ex: I appreciated his help when we moved.
Ex: I would appreciate it if(=please do what I ask)

----I would appreciate it if you would turn the music down.

• (Not in progressive) to understand how serious a situation or problem is or what someone's feelings are
Ex: I appreciate your problem ,but I don’t think I can help you.

• To gradually become more valuable over period of time
Ex: Most investments are expected to appreciate at a steady rate.
Ex: Land will continue to appreciate.

Appreciation (noun)
• Pleasure you feel when you realize something is good ,useful ,or well done
• Show your appreciation to someone that you are grateful for something they have done.
Ex: To show our appreciation for all your hard work, we'd like to give you a bonus.
Ex: We showed our appreciation with flowers.

• An understanding of the importance or meaning of something-- "+of"
Ex: a realistic appreciation of the situation

• "singular" a rise in value, especially of land or possessions
Ex: an appreciation of 50% in property values
Ex: The appreciation of the dollar against the yen is in your favor.

Appreciative (adj.)
• Feeling or showing admiration or thank
Ex: An appreciative audience
• Be + appreciative + of
Ex: The visitors were appreciative of all the kindness they'd received.
Ex:She was deeply appreciative of your help.

Appreciatively (adv.)

Jul 5, 2007

LOHAS (Word of the day, 2007/7/5)

By James Wang

What is LOHAS?

LOHAS is an acronym for "Lifestyles Of Health And Sustainability", it focuses on health and fitness, the environment, personal development, sustainable living, and social justice.

The literal translation of LOHAS (樂活) into Chinese means "happy life" and it appears that we want to live a traditional lifestyle with a modern twist.

Healthy Lifestyles: Natural, organics; nutritional products; Food and beverage; Dietary supplements; Personal care

Sustainable Economy: Green building and industrial goods; Renewable energy; Resource-efficient products; Socially responsible investing; Alternative transportation; Environmental management

Alternative Healthcare: Health and wellness solutions; Acupuncture, homeopathy, naturopathy, etc.; Holistic disease prevention; Complementary medicine

Ecological Lifestyles: Ecological home and office products; Organic / recycled Products; Environmentally friendly appliances; Eco-tourism and travel

LOHAS companies

LOHAS companies practice "responsible capitalism" by providing goods and services using economic and environmentally sustainable business practices. LOHAS business owners and industry leaders from around the world meet each year at the LOHAS Conference to discuss industry trends, share ideas and learn how to run a successful LOHAS business.

LOHAS consumers

LOHAS consumers sometimes referred to as Lohasians, are interested in products covering a range of market sectors and sub-sectors, including: green building supplies, socially responsible investing and "green stocks", alternative healthcare, organic clothing and food, personal development media, yoga and other fitness products, eco-tourism and more.


(1) sports: golf, swimming, jogging, tai-chi boxing, climbing hill
(2) diet: natural, fresh food, less oil, less grease, low sugar, low salt
(3) regular life time
(4) annual check up

(1) Positive thought
(2) Control temper
(3) Stress relief
(4) Religious brief
(5) Meditation
(6) Hobby: tea/coffee art, music, bird watching

(1) Family
(2) Relative
(3) Friends: doctor, lawyer, specialist
(4) Associates

(3)Debit -- lower desire
(4)Investment -- risk analysis

4 key managements:
(1)Well Health
(2)Nice Emotion
(3)Good Human
(4)Financial Scheme: Plan, Do, Check, Action

Happy everyday, hour, minute, second.

Enjoy your life!

Jun 24, 2007

Fish is Fish

C8 Speech, Add Impact to Your Speech, by Alan Lin, 2006/11/2
Madam/ Mr. Toastmaster, ladies and gentlemen!

This is a magic moment. Please pay attention to the balloon.

How could a balloon keep its expansion with an open end?

You cannot believe it because it conflicts with your common sense. In other words, you understand new knowledge based on what you have known.

A few months ago, for writing the proposal of my dissertation I read a storybook, titled "Fish is fish". Why did I read a children's storybook for my dissertation? That's a long story.

Now, let's begin the story about … about a fish.

Once upon a time, there was a pond at the edge of the woods. And there a minnow and a tadpole swam among the weeds. They were good friends.

One morning the tadpole yelled, "Look, look, I've grown two legs. I'm a frog!"

The minnow said, "Nonsense. How could you be a frog? If only last night you were a little fish, just like me!" They argued and argued until the tadpole said, "Frogs are frogs, and fish is fish, and that's that!"

Finally the tadpole had grown into a frog! He decided to go out onto the land. He said good-bye to his friend and promised to return and report on what he had seen to him.

Then one day, a happy splash shocked the weeds.The frog returned to the pond to meet his lonely friend. The fish excitedly asked, "Where have you been?"

"I've been around the world, hopping here and there. And I've seen unusual things."

"Like what?"

"Birds. A bird has wings, and two legs, and feather with many, many colors."

The fish saw the birds fly through his mind like large feathered fish.

"What else?"

"And people. They wear clothes and hats, and walk with two legs."

The fish saw in mind, a man and a child look like a huge and a big fish walking upright and dressed in clothing.

"What else?"


A black-and-white spotted fish with horns and udders chewed weeds and mooed on the fish's mind.

What was wrong? Between the frog's teaching and the fish's learning, something went wrong.

Isn't the frog a good teacher? Or the fish isn't a good student!

Maybe the frog was an earnest teacher. But an earnest teacher doesn't need to promise to be a good teacher. The frog forgot that fish is fish. He did his best to teach the fish based on the frog's own experiences, not on the fish's current knowledge. Remember, we use what we have already known to shape our new understandings, just as the fish did. That's an important viewpoint on learning. Do you agree?

Teachers have to begin their teaching from what students have already known. That's the conclusion I made from the storybook "Fish is fish". And that's why I read it for my dissertation.

Am I a good teacher, or just an earnest teacher like the frog?

Madam/ Mr. Toastmaster.

Alan's Ice-breaking

C1 Speech, By Alan Lin, 2004/8/4

Mr. Toastmaster, ladies and gentlemen, good evening!

I have good news to share with you. This afternoon, the President summoned my students for their outstanding performance in national science fair held in Kaohsiung County last week. My students won the first place Grand Award in Earth Science. They studied on the breaking wave. And I'm their teacher-sponsor.

So, you know, I'm a teacher. I like teaching science outdoors, but I'm not an Earth Science Teacher, I'm a Physics teacher. "Oh! Physics. Physics is a difficult subject." This is a common response from most of the people while they hear my introduction of myself. "I always fail in Physics." This is a second response to my occupation. Well, I have taught a subject named failure for twenty-eight years.

When I think of this, I feel discouraged. I have hummed so many lullabies in my Physics classes for twenty-eight years. I decided to change the situation. I made a decision to go back to the university three years ago, not only for learning how to teach Physics, but also for being the empty nest. Four years ago, my second son left us for university as well as his brother. And my wife went to learn Japanese for the better understanding of the TV shows on NHK. They all go to school but me. The Chinese proverb says that you will have a hateful appearance if you have no reading for three days. I have no reading for twenty-eight years. I looked at the mirror and found that I have a hateful face, then I went back to the school.

Three years is a long time for an old student like me. Sometimes I nodded my head as well as my students did in my class. Moreover, I found that I have difficulties in moving the information from the short-term memories to the long-term memories. Don't blame me! It's not my fault. With the increase of the age, I have to study hard to conquer the decrease of the synapses, which play the important roles of memory.

The month before Last month, I passed through the examination of qualification and became the candidate for Doctor degree. If you ask me what I have learned during the past three years, I could show you. Please pay attention to the ribbon. Do you believe in your eyes? Indeed, the ribbon is moving upward along the rubber string. Why? I major in magic education, oh no, I major in science education. If you are curious about it, please come to my Physics class. I'm sure you will love it.

Mr. Toastmaster.

Jun 23, 2007

Introduction in Chinese

Introduction (English Version)

姜會長(2006-2007)給中油同仁的一封信 (2006/6/8)

國際演講協會(Toastmasters International) 是一個專為訓練會員溝通技巧與領導才能的非營利性組織,也是一個國際性的終身學習的成長性社團。1942年創立於美國加州,迄今全球八十個國家約設有九千多個分會,擁有會員20萬人。台灣地區總會已向內政部申請立案,於民國85年成立「中華民國國際演講協會」,目前在台灣地區約有八十餘個分會,其中80%使用英語。









Inaugural Speech (2006-2007)

By Ivan Chiang, President 2006-2007

Dear IPP Angela and PP Grace, my dear fellow members:

I have never considered to take this job before Angela called me. And my first reaction was that Angela could bear it one more year. But Angela said it's illegal. And then, I recommended Alan Lin. But Angela said he is too busy working on his PHD. Angela thinks I will be the suitable candidate for this job because I am old enough not only in membership seniority but also in age. Even though I am busy too, I cannot reject her goodwill. Another reason is that I like this club and I hope to do something for this club.

Thanks all of you to support me and give me the opportunity to service for this club. I have thought over what can we do to develop our club more strong and beloved. I have some ideas to share with you and hope that you can share your opinion with me too.

First of all, I will try to invite more new members to joint us. I will try it in CPC, you know CPC has the potential ability to supply a huge numbers of member. And I will try on my supplemental go school, my classmates, my friends and my relatives. I ask you to try it too. To try to persuade all people you know to joint our club and enjoy the pleasure of progress and friendship.

The second important point is we must keep the quests stay and become our new member. I hope that every receptionist when receive a new guest must introduce him/her to president or PRVP, and president or PRVP will introduce a mentor for him/her to help him/her to understand the operation of our meeting. And this mentor will sit by him/her side and help him/her to feel comfortable in the meeting, and be sure that they can get needed information about the club after the meeting till he/she becomes our new member. So I need your help to work as a friendly and enthusiastic mentor.

Some of the quests coming first time will be amazed about our elder member's English ability and afraid that they cannot catch up. That is the time the mentors shall help them, to help them to make some simple self-introduction and/or feeling sharing. Every meeting all attendance shall have the chance to say something even only a few of simple sentences with the help of their mentors.

Above is my personal idea about improving our club's operation. I hope you will present your idea and share with us. Beside this, I will ask all of you to try your best to attend all kind of activities, like officer's training, outdoor or entertainment activities or sister club's activities, etc.

After all, I wish all members and quests will enjoy the meeting and obtain progress in English and leadership in the coming yearly period. Thank you very much.

How to Manage a Sweet and fortunate Marriage

Script for Division D speech contest, By Ivan Chiang, 2006/3/27

Toast master, ladies and gentlemen, before I deliver my speech I want to ask you a question. What kind of interpersonal relation in your life is most important? Please think over this question for five second. O.K. My answer is: "The most important and last longest relation is with your spouse. It can last over 50 years."

How will you manage this most important affair in your life? That is my topic today. I will give some advice here. But you may ask me: "Are you qualified to give any advice?" I must mention that among my colleagues and friends, my wife and I are famous as model couple. And I have had some experience to be consulted about the marriage problem. So I belief my advice should be useful and helpful.

My discussion will be departed to two parts: before marry and after marry. Before you get married you should know: "To choose a right person promises 50% success." How to choose your Mr. Right? I will present three main points below:

First, you must choose a good man but not an attractive man. Did you ever hear such words?
"Even thought my friends and relatives have bad comments on him, but I still believe he love me truly." Or "He has had many girl friends before, but he swell to me that I am the last and the only one." Do you believe it? Let me tell you: Love is blind, but marriage must be rational. Observe this man carefully about how he deals with other people, like his parent, his friends and weak fellows. You can find out if he is a reliable person or not.

Second "Personality suitable for each other is important." People's personality could be much different. Man can be romantic or realistic, generous or stingy, open-minded or reserved. I can't say that a romantic lady married to a realistic gentleman could have a happy marriage. Just image when the romantic wife cry for a touching love movie in the theater, the realistic husband still complain that to rent a VCD to watch at home will be cheaper.

Third "Only true love can make up the gap of education, wealth and social position between two families."

Will Cinderala be happy forever after she got married to the prince? I think it will depend on the attitude of Cinderala herself, prince and prince's family. Cinderala must have strong confidence on herself and prince. Otherwise the marriage could hardly be fortunate.

Following I will discuss how to manage the marriage after getting married. It will be much easier than to choose a right person. It needs not so much intelligence and insight, but a little more patience and understanding.

I will give three guidelines and four tips.

The first guideline is: "To respect your spouse's individuality". Most of people make a mistake that the closer relationship they have, the less respect they show to each other. People always ignore their spouse's individuality and regard them as their accessories. The first tip is a Chinese proverb: "The wife and husband shall respect each other like a quest".

The second guideline I must emphasize the importance of communication. Another common mistake people make is that they think families don't need to communicate. This is a terrible false. Communication is the best way to improve your love and understanding. And the second tip is: a hug and a kiss is another way of communication and the best way.

The last guideline is: "Family is not a place for rationality but a place for love". Every husband and wife will dispute, but never try to win the debate by rational argument, you must win by love. Here is the third tip: In a dispute, one who apologizes first is the winner and the fourth tip: Never say any words when you are angry or you shall regret after you calm down.

Remember that the most important and last longest relation in your life is with your spouse. Whether you can or not manage a successful marriage will determine your life being successful or not. You need to pay much attention to it. Wish all of you have a sweet and fortunate marriage. Ladies and gentlemen, toast master of the evening.

Never Stop Learning and Don't Fear of Learning

C10 Speech, By Ivan Chiang

Toast master, Ladies and gentlemen!

At my 50th years birthday I just passed last year, I was thinking about what is my comprehension of my life. I concluded it to a simple motto: That is: "Never stop learning and don't fear of learning." This motto can describe my passed 50 years of life and will be the guideline of my second half of life. I will share my experience with you.

I was not a smart student in my school days. I had no chance to enter top junior high school or senior high even through hard study. During the second year of senior high, I was pretty ill and miss the final exam, so that I am failed it and had to study one year again. In this second year, I studied very hard to keep my score at top of my class till I graduated. And then I passed the entrance examination for university and entered a famous national university.
To review my study procedure, it is not smooth, but since I never give up, I finally caught up with many smart and better classmates in the end.

In my job career it is the same, I was never a frontrunner at the beginning, but after ten or twenty years, I gradually started to move forward. I owe what I am today to one reason: "I never stop learning."

Another example for me is to learn go game. My father taught me go game at my high school days. After one or two years, my father could hardly win, so he did not like to play with me anymore. After I joined go club in university, I found that my go level was very low, something like nine Gi. When I worked in CPC, I joined CPC’s go club. CPC has a whole company's go contest. Kaohsiung refinery needs to select 5 contestants to participate in this contest. At first few years I could not get the top-five ticket. When I finally won the ticket, I participated in this contest from the lowest丁group. After that, every year I got the top 3 award and moved to an upper group from 丙、乙、甲till the highest Dan group.

I caught up all these players smarter and better experience than me just because they looked at go as a game but I studied it as a knowledge.

Ladies and gentlemen! Most of the adults stop learning just because they fear. They are afraid that people knows his ignorance. They only want to show what they know and never ask about what they didn't know. How frequently you say the three words: "I don't know"? Do you know a very interesting phenomenon that the more people knowledgeable, the more frequently they say this three words. What does it meaning? It means: knowledge comes from your admission of ignorance.

During every learning process people will face failure. Some adults come to my go school to learn go. But after several time lost to children, they gave up. Once I saw a colleague listening to a foreigner speaking. He nodded his head all the time. And after this foreigner left, I asked him what this foreigner said. He said: "I didn't understand a singer word."

Last month my family joined a skiing tour to Korea. We had a skiing course here. Half of the members dare not to learn. They even didn't want to try. Another half put on the ski, took some picture, tried some times. When they fell down, they gave up. Finally, only the one who fell down the most times can learn to ski.

Ladies and gentlemen! Learning is a whole life career, and absolutely not limited to in school. To keep learning make your career successful, make your life colorful, and make you always young. But understanding that is not enough, you must not fear of making mistake when you learn English, not fear of falling down when you learn skiing, and not fear of losing when you learning go. It's the only way you will be able to have a successful learning.

As my C10 speech, I present this motto to inspirit you and myself: "Never stop learning and don't fear of learning."

The powerful words we say

C5 Speech, By Paulina, 2006/12/27

We speak every day, but how much do you know about the power of words? Have you ever been angry with someone due to their criticism? Have you ever listened to someone's words, but never understand its meaning? That's the power of our words!

In ancient Japan, people believe in soul of words. That means the words we say has miraculous power. They believe when we give praise to God, the praise is not for God to hear. This is because God already knows your thoughts before you speak those words. The value for praising god is creating miraculous powers through your words. It is believed that things happen following your words, praise or curse. Therefore, they are afraid to wrongfully use words that may cause disaster.

We can also see the power of words from western religions. In bible, there is scripture about words powers. When Isaac was aware of his impending death, he prepared to give his blessings to his firstborn son, Esau. The blessing that a father gives to his firstborn son is particularly special, and regarded as being better and more powerful. Isaac's younger son Jacob wanted to get it, and he knew his father's eyes were too dim to tell them apart. Jacob pretended he was Esau and got his father's firstborn blessing. Jacob felt it was necessary to lie in order to steal the blessing. From here, we can see the power and allure our words can become.

I'd like to introduce the use of powerful words.

Firstly, we can speak words confidently to ourselves each morning. In the morning, when we wake up, we should loudly say: today is a beautiful day. This can give you an energy boost throughout the day. When you look into the mirror, you should say “Mirror, mirror, I'm the most attractive person in the world”. This can give you confidence. When you're going to deliver a speech, you should convince yourself you can make it. You will become less nervous. The stronger you say these words, the more confidence you will have. This can make things work out. In contrary, when we say negative words, it also affects us. If we tell ourselves we can’t do it, then it is very hard to be successful. When we say “No, I can't make it”, we will only find excuses through difficult trials. We won't try our best to find solutions. The words can lead our thoughts subconsciously. So, we can train ourselves by using words. Try to say positive words instead of negative words. Learn to actively speak in a positive manner.

Secondly, different languages, words, and intonation often reflect different meanings. For example, the traditional Art: hand-held puppet show: Only Taiwanese can show the complete artistic aspect of the puppet show. If you use Mandarin or English to present it, the feeling is completely different. Using the right language, proper words and intonation, your words will be suitable and understood.

Thirdly, we should pay attention to what we say. Sometimes, your words can change somebody, for better or worse. Have you ever noticed the words that hurt people are always quite short and heavy? Our words own different powers according to our emotion. Speaking is an art; w can use words to affect other’s mood, life, and attitude both directly and indirectly. I remember in elementary school, the topic of composition “What is the sentence which affects you mostly?” The common response is usually what their grandpa, grandma, father, mother, or teacher says to them……” When we speak negatively, it's just like hammering the nails into the wall. Each bad sentence is a single nail. Even if you take out the nails later on, you will still leave holes on the wall. Sometimes, we can't afford the result our words will cause. So, it's very important when you speak, to be extremely careful with your choice of words.Words are one of the most important tools for communication. We speak every day, and through this speech, you now know how important it is. It's just like a double edged sword where one edge can hurt someone and the other edge can protect someone. It all depends on how you use it.

Live in the right speed

C4 Speech, By Paulina Chao, 2006/8/1

Picture: what is the first thing you do in the morning when you wake up? Is it opening the curtains? Brushing your teeth? Doing exercise? Or worrying if you can complete today’s work? Actually, the first thing we do is looking at a clock. If it is still early, we would go back to the bed. If it’s late, we would jump from our bed and rush to work. We live in a time river and time flies. How can we fight against the clock?

The industry is doing us a big favor. We live in a world filled of machines. We have washing machines, vacuums machines, and dishwasher machines to save time from housework. We don’t need to wash all our clothes by hand like our grandma. We have telephones, computers, and fax machines to make our work more efficient. Airplanes and cars can take us almost anywhere we want. These inventions leave us more time to enjoy our life. They change our lifestyle and extend our life in a special way. As we can clearly see, machines are useful for fighting against the clock.

Three hundred years ago, someone predicted that in the future due to technology, we would only need to work two to three hours per day. People will spend most of their time for entertainment. The words “fast, quick, rush or hurry” will disappear. Unfortunately, the prediction has been proven to be just a dream. The truth is the opposite. Life’s footstep is becoming faster than ever before. The word “karoshi” was coined few years ago. This Japanese word means "death from overwork”. People lead a life with such a busy pace, which they pay for with their health. Although machines save us time, we still overwork to fulfill our desires in a competitive world.

Increased pressures and anxieties are causing mental and heart diseases. People are starting to review their lives footstep. They find a slower life make us happier and healthier. The master coffee advertisement says “We should waste our life on the beautiful moments. Sometimes, just with a cup of coffee or tea to drink slowly, we can smell it by our nose and taste it by our tongue. Sometimes, just listen to a lovely song, we can imagine the world. In these moments, we can tell “this is life!” We can enjoy more about life when we slow down. More and more people start to lead a slower life and enjoy it. We can see this trend from the rage of yoga, meditation, jogging, and handicrafts. The Spanish slang says “Those who run faster will reach the grave firstly”. I believe no one likes to speed up under these conditions.

Now we come to one question: what is a suitable speed for living? The fact is, there is no certain standard on how fast or how slow you should be. Your speed should be whatever you feel is comfortable. We should learn how to control time, and not be controlled by time. We can combine a fast life and a slow life together, making it balance like playing music. Include allegro, moderato, and lento for the rhythm; working fast, while eating and reading slowly. These choices are all up to you. The life will be diversified and rich when it goes in different tempos. Let us play a right rhythm for our life.

To make an effective communication

C3 Speech, By Paulina Chao, 2006/5/13

Mr. (or Madam) Toastmaster. Ladies and gentlemen.

Let me start by telling a situation we might face during the daily life. John, a new engineer in your company, is always late to the office. As John’s supervisor, you feel unsatisfied about this situation. At first, you don’t want to handle this problem, because you think his working ability is very good. You don’t want to affect your relationship with him by blaming him for late. However, you feel angrier about John while he keeps being late. Finally, you loose your patience and talk with John about this problem. He promises that he will be punctual next time, but still fails. Under this situation, how to make an effective communication? Today, I’d like to talk about three ways help you to make an effective communication.

Firstly,” Decision”. How to decide whether a communication is needed or not? From your viewpoint, John is a good worker and you have good relationship with him. Should you discuss about the problem of lateness with him? The tool to evaluate is you should review your reaction. When people are unhappy and bothered by something, even they choose not to discuss it, their facial expression, body move, and talking will reveal it. The other person can feel your dislike without understanding why. This will affect your relationship slowly. If you find that your attitude towards John becomes unfriendly, perhaps you should decide to make the communication.

Secondly, “Definition”. To define what the real problem is can make the communication more effective. When John is late for the first time, you should talk with him about the problems content. That is “you’re late and I hope you can improve it”. When John is late for second time, then, you should talk about the pattern. “You promise that you will be punctual, but you break your promise. This hurt your credit and it’s hard to trust your words next time. When the problem repeats, then it’s time to discuss about relationship. You should point out that it will affect your relationship with him. Most of people will keep talking about content only while the problem repeats. It’s very easy to turn the communication into blatter just like mothers do. Using the “definition”, that is whether the problem belongs to content, pattern or relationship, I call it CPR, can help you solve the real problem. So, to get your head right before you open your mouth.

Thirdly, “Emotion”. Emotion Control. We all know it’s very hard to control the emotion before and during the communication, especially when we’re angry. The anger is very easy to turn the communication into fighting. According to a research called “attribution studies”, which found most people are not familiar to find the reasons for the problem. People are apt to conclude the problems come from the character. When John keeps being late to work, you start to think John is someone unpolite and rude. This makes you even angrier. If you want to make an effective communication, you should control your emotion by controlling your thoughts. It’s better to calm down before starting a communication. How to make it? My suggestion is to think some good aspects and positive stories for the person instead of thinking the bad character. Perhaps John needs to send his daughter to school every morning, and that’s why he is late. Maybe you can think some good suggestions after understanding the truth. When we think the positive way, it’s easier to calm down and make an effective communication.

Let me just run over the three key points you can use before an effective communication. They are “decision”, “definition”, and “emotion”. To decide whether a communication is needed, define what the problem is and control your emotion. These tools can help us to make an effective communication. Nowadays, we all play different roles in the society, just like you and me. The effective communication can improve the human relationship for us. I’d like to leave you with the following thought – doing some preparation before the communication can make it more effective. So, well prepared!
Leon Wang
Apr., 18, 2006

The Silent Language

There is a language that everyone speaks. It’s not taught in any classrooms and it doesn’t have grammar, spelling or pronunciation. However, it is an extremely important language. This is the language of nonverbal communication- what your body posture, face, eye contact and gestures about you.

Eye contact- In many countries, for example, Muslim countries, direct eye contact is a sign of disrespect. Americans use eye contact to indicate understanding, interest, and confidence. When someone is talking to you, try to maintain good eye contact.

Hand shake- It’s customary to shake hands with an individual you’ve been introduced to or when saying hello. The best hand shake is, “Open your hand, keeping all your fingers together and the thumb open. Grasp the palm firmly, but not crushingly, and give a couple of small shakes. Don’t let your hand go all limp.”

Your voice- The voice is your first tool for communicating information with others. How you say is just as important as what you say.

Smile- The fastest and easiest way to meet people and make friends is to smile! Smiles are very contagious and a great way to start a conversation or a friendship

Personal space- In some countries, it may be acceptable to stand very close to another person, but in USA, people might feel uncomfortable and threatened. Americans usually maintain a space of 2-3 feet around them as their personal space. Unless you are on a crowded bus, try to maintain that distance to make others comfortable with your company.

[Personal experience]

The best method to learn nonverbal skills is to watch how other people interact. Go to the mall, the park, a bookstore or a restaurant and observe how others communicate in verbal and nonverbal ways. You will quickly learn what nonverbal actions Americans see as confident and friendly, and practice them yourself.

Remember, “Silent talks more!”
C1 Speech (Leon Wang in 2006)

My name is Leon. It is my French name. Last year, I graduated from CCU which is located in Chia-Yi County. I studied in Department of Foreign languages and literature. English courses are compulsory for us, and we have to take Second Foreign Language courses. I choose French. Why? At first, I was interested in Japanese courses, but I heard some bad news about the Japanese instructor, so I changed my mind to head for French realm. Honestly, I don’t learn French very well, but I always cheat my friends with some French sentences, to prove I am good at it! Such as…

My college life is a turning point for me. It is my first time to leave home and to live in the faraway place. When I didn’t go to the college, my first impression for Chia-Yi County was a place of inconvenience. I was not surprised when I reached there. The most you could see was farm, farm, and farm. Meanwhile, the air was full of the smell of fertilizer. Everything there was new for me because I never experienced it before, especially in Kaohsiung. However, God is equal. Some things only happen in rural areas. Can you imagine a firefly flies into your home? This happened to me. It stops on the top rim of my cup, twinkling and twinkling. I am excited by this little insect. The one necessary thing that students in our college need to experience during the 4 years is go to the mountain area in竹崎 to enjoy the firefly pageant. I will remember forever we rode on our motorcycles at midnight and went to the mountain where is lightless, totally dark. Finally, we really saw numerous fireflies. Until now, the most shocking scene for me is many, many, many fireflies gathering in a tree. It is like a Christmas tree. This big fake Christmas tree has been unforgettable for me so far.

After my graduation last year, I found a part-time job while I was waiting for the military service. I went to the naval troops in September, but quickly I was rejected because of high blood pressure. I “heritage” the disease from my father. Later, I took 12-day replacement service in December. High blood pressure is complicated for me. It lets me get rid of the normal military service, whereas it is a potential jeopardy in my life. As a result, I keep a habit of jogging to make my body healthier.

When it comes to my personality, I define myself as a man of discipline. I am not good at joking, but I like to be infected by happy atmosphere. I always have great fun in making humorous and amusing friends because they can bring me happiness. Obviously, members in Toastmaster are my great friends because all of you bring me the most fun. Now, I am preparing for the Entrance Exam of Political Science Department next year. I find everything about international relations is fascinating, such as International Relation Theory, International Law, Political Science. I take much time to be with the books every day. My life pattern is immutable and pure. That’s why I look forward to Toastmaster activity so much. Because you make my life colorful!

Life Is a Long Journey

June 2, 2004
Farewell Speech, by Darren Yeh, charter president(2003-2004)

Dear fellow Toastmasters, ladies and gentlemen, good evening.

I haven't seen you for a long time. How have you been? First and foremost, I want to share good news and bad news with you. Which one do you want to know first?

Good news is that I already got a job--- Evergreen Marine Co. accepted me to serve as a marine mate and asked me to get on board by the end of this month. So, I will leave Taiwan for several months and sail around the world. Before I work on a 6,000 TUE container ship, I have to take many training courses for meeting the professional competency requirements and that's why I can't attend tonight's officer's installation ceremony. I am so sorry! But if my vessel entering Kaohsiung Harbor, you are most welcome to visit my ship and be my guests on board.

About the bad news--- my NEW girl friend and I broke up last week. Through this ANOTHER tragedy, I learnt that "never believe what women said"; and "there is no good unmarried women but lesbians." John, do you agree? I know it’s hard to tell the truth before so many beautiful girls.

Life is a long journey. We may get a lot of fun during it. 18 months ago, in order to fulfill my 2 years military service, I came to southern Taiwan. At here, I met a sweet, considerate and of course, MARRIED lady--- Sherry; we started to discuss the possibilities of chartering a club in Tsoying. Then, we shared our ideas with many senior members in Division D. Certainly, we got lots of inspiring responses--- Dick, Melody, Grace and John, thank you so much for your advice and support. From then on, the seeds of chartering our club were deeply rooted in our hearts.

Through 6 months hard working, we hold 2 demo meetings, recruited 25 charter members, conducted the officer team, sent required documentary materials to HQs, then our club was finally chartered.

After the chartering, our club officers devoted themselves to our members, Ivans, Joyce, Andy, W.C., Joy, Angela, Jeff, Sherry and Alan, your effects made our club a lovely club. You did a wonderful job. I thank you.

Grace, the difference between your presidency and mine is you got it through a democratic, fair and peaceful election. Your inauguration is full of blessings and joyfulness. I believe that you will lead our club to a prosperous future. I hand it to you.

By the way, Benjamin, my Cow Lord, as an ATM, you decided and were elected SAA. I am very proud of you. I hope one day, you will be our club's president.

Life is a long journey. When we end a story, another story is just beginning. It's really nice to having you during my journey of life. And these days we were here will always be remembered.
I love you and “I'll be back, soon.”

Sincerely yours,
Darren Yeh

Jun 22, 2007

Festival (Word of the day, 2007/6/20)

By Summer Lin

Dragon Boat Festival
• Rice-Wrap Day, (Agriculture Calendar May 5th)
• Dragon-boat races/ Rice dumpling
• In memory of Chu Yuan!

Other festivals?
Chinese Traditional Festivals
• Spring Festival
• Lantern Festival
• Mid-Year Festival (Ghost Festival)
• Mid-Autumn Festival
• New Year's Eve (the last day of the Agriculture Calendar)
Other Examples:
• Christmas is one of the festivals of Christian Church.
• The movie generated a very positive response at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.

Definition 1:
• A series of performances of movies, plays, music, or dancing that is usually organized in the same place at the same time each year.
The Edinburgh Festival愛丁堡藝術節
Definition 2:
• an event that is held to celebrate a particular thing or activity
Yang Ming Shan Flower Festival
Definition 3:
• A day or period when there is a public holiday, often to celebrate a religious event.
Moon Festival

• feste
• feast
• fete
• -fest

More words:
• Fest- a song/beer/food fest/ -fest/talkfest
• Festive-bright and cheerful, joyful, merry
• festivity- things done to celebrate a special occasion

• V+ festivalhold a festivalkeep the Spring Festivalobserve/celebrate a festivalthrow a
• Adj/N+ festivala religious/ dance/drama/film/folk/harvest/music/beer/flower festival

More examples:
• The Cannes Film Festival
• A harvest festival
• A Shakespeare festival
• The silver jubilee festival
• A victory festival
• Mud Festival
• Film Festival

Enjoy yourselves!
• What kind of festival do you enjoy the most?
• Do you want to create a festival of your own?

Jun 6, 2007

Newly (Word of the day, 2007/6/6)

Newly By Nina Chou
newly : adv., usually before a past participle.
It means recently.
Ex.: a newly married couple
new year
new wave
newly industrialized

May 16, 2007

Affection (Word of the day, 2007/5/16)

1. feeling or emotion: She has a great affection for her families.
2. influence: The affection of global warming on earth are self-evident.
3. disease: The boy is suffering from an affection of the ear.
4. attribute: The figure, weight, etc., are affections of bodies

Affective(adjective): affective disorder

Affect (verb): The amount of rain affects the growth of crops.
She was deeply affected by his love.
His lung had become affected.

Affection is the expression of care. It symbolizes security, protection, comfort and approval -- vital ingredients in any relationship. When one spouse is affectionate toward the other, the following messages are sent:

You are important to me. I will care for you and protect you.
I'm concerned about the problems you face and will be there for you when you need me.
There are some ways to communicate affection effectively.

A simple hug can say those things. And there are many other ways to show our affection:

A greeting card or an "I love you" note; a bouquet of flowers; holding hands; walks after dinner; back rubs; phone calls; and conversations with thoughtful and loving expressions. All of these can effectively communicate affection.

Affection is, for many, the essential cement of a relationship. Without it, many feel totally alienated. With it, they become emotionally bonded. If you feel terrific when your spouse is affectionate, and you feel terrible when there is not enough of it, you have the emotional need for affection.

A public display of affection (sometimes abbreviated PDA) is the. For example, Holding hands & Kissing cheek in public are commonly defined as public displays of affection.

For Example: Could you mention some behavior or actions to express your affection for your mother during the mother's day?

May 13, 2007

Toastmasters Club C7 Speech

“Destiny of Stray Animals”

Rebecca Chou 2006/11/01
Sometimes I am wondering why a little kitten can grow up like this as my fatty cat. She was a stray cat before who was been dumped after her birth. My sister picked her up and because of her pregnancy, she gave it to me four years ago. After having a cat as pet, I found the biggest advantage is meeting handsome veterinarians when your pet is sick. However, the hardest part is also this because there is no medical insurance for pets, the cost will be double or triple. Meanwhile, no one likes the medicine and neither does your pet. Forcing them to take medicines is a mission impossible.

My cat is lucky because she has a sweet home. But from the recent news, the cat abuse case, we can imagine how awful an owner can be to a little animal. After knowing the destiny of stray animals, the worst is staying in the public shelters. Based on our Animal Protection Law, any animal is kept there for over seven days without adoption will go to heaven including your lost pet without chips! The truth is the road to heaven is suffering. The process of euthanasia is under table and far beyond of humanity. Under only 1% adoption rate of Taipei Public Shelter, the highest one in Taiwan, there will be more than 20 animals killed everyday.

Because of high labor cost and other expenses, stray animals there have no shelters at all but only a concentration camp such as Jewish people had during the Second World War. Although we cannot save them all, at least we have to know the real situation and need to keep in mind “the four No”.

1. No more stray animals.
This includes lost animals and dumped ones. For previous ones, we may need to inject chips inside of their bodies so that we could find them easily once they get lost. Since we are the owner and we have the responsibility to take care of them forever. Do not throw them away when they are old or sick. If you cannot keep them, there are many private shelters for them besides of leaving them alone on the streets.

2. No more mass destruction.
Based on statistics, killing a stray dog will cost NT$ 4800 which is almost two times of birth control. As mentioned before, over 7 days without adoption, stray animals will be killed according to the law but the problem is still on the street. The best solution is birth control instead of catch-and-kill.

3. No more superficial numbers.
Adoption of stray animals in Taiwan is less than 1% and all of them will die after seven days of cruel treatment. We may believe that some of them will find adopters; however, the truth is the adopters are the original owners. Those lost animals in public shelters will get back home easily because their owners will look for them. But their dirty and negative looking, they can hardly find adopters.

4. No more public shelters.
Sending stray animals to public shelters means sending them to hell. The private shelters will try to take care every animal until the last minute of their lives and they do not have to worry about anything there. If there is stray animal around your neighborhood, you have the choice to find a better place for them.

I know the stray animal problem cannot be solved within a short period but if we all have clear ideas of their possible destinies, we can save them from tortures and unfair treatment.
Tsoying Toastmasters Club C6 Speech

You Are Always on My Mind

Rebecca Chou 2006/10/04
This person is a great director. I have seen almost all him movies. He won lots of international awards, such as, Golden Lion or Oscar. This year he was the Oscar Best Director winner. And the movie brought him such honor is also popular. It describes the love between two young cowboys and their emotional struggle for the forbidden relationship. The most impressive thing he wants to say is that true love remains forever and it goes beyond genders, races, wealth or other things.

Ang Lee, an ordinary person, grew up in a traditional family. His father was a principal of Tainan senior high school. His manners and educational expectations once made this director very depressed because he did not get good grades in school. He liked to watch movies and write his own stories. He found movie is the one always on his mind.

After graduating from the university, he chose to study in the U.S. However, he worked at home before becoming successful and famous. He took the job as a househusband and cooked for his families for over six years. He did not give up his dreams. After his first film in Taiwan, he became noticed and got more opportunities.

His works of 飲食男女,推手and喜宴impressed the whole world. So the Hollywood, the major source of US movie industry invited him to join a new team. He started to make English films. Being an Asian working in a western country is not easy. It is easy for us to understand the cultural difference, communication and other difficulties. Nevertheless, he did it. “Sense and Sensibility”, “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”, “Hawk” and “Brokenback Mountain” bring him to the world fame step by step.

Especially Brokenback Mountain gives him the Oscar Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Original Score. He said there is a brokenback mountain hidden in everyone’s heart. It could be a person or anything else. Honestly I am still trying to find out my own brokenback mountain and I hope all of us can find it no matter how far or how hard we have to try. You may think it is only a gay movie, but never forget only true love can really touch people and can be always on our mind.

Ang Lee had done it and is still doing for it. How about us? Anyone or anything is on your mind right now? Don’t forget to fight for it because it is worthy and you can never imagine what you will gain from it.
Tsoying Toastmasters Club C4 Speech

My Secret Garden: Gmail box

Rebecca Chou
Have you ever been in some chaos, feeling exhausted, depressed or empty before? More and more working and other kinds of pressures, the phenomena of suicide and credit card debt happening everyday, negative news from the media including increased pricing, high unemployment rate and other political arguments or other incidents ever make you feel tired of your life, your job, your family or anyone even anything else because you want to find a real quite place, somewhere you can take rest, clear your mind or even not to think any problems or troubles at all? A secret garden is what you need.

My secret garden is a place where I can say anything I want to a stranger who is my secret friend on the Internet. I met him in a chatting room of Spanish studying website. At first I just hope to find someone to practice my Spanish or I will probably forget how to say it since I do not have any chance to use it after graduation. I apply a new email address in google and all our emails are kept in records because the gmail box has a huge capacity and you do not have to delete a single email.

The reason why I chose him to be my pen pal is because of age and gender. We are almost at the same age and I think I could understand more about different opinions from a male friend. I am sure that we do not have any generation gap but only cultural difference. In the beginning I did not expect that I would know such a nice person. As you know, only dinosaurs will make friends through Internet no matter under which purpose. However, I think I am lucky because he is a very considerate and mature dinosaur.

Calling him a dinosaur is unfair because I have no idea of his looking. I told him that it will be better that we do not know each other’s faces because when one day I go to Madrid, I will not be afraid that someone on the street will call my name. He agreed therefore I told him that he is a friend of mine without faces. You can imagine that what you will tell your friends is what I have told him. Surprisingly, he gave me lots of good suggestions.

For example, when I told him that I am not interested in working in my current company, he suggested me to take notes everyday to find out the good points of this company or of my job. Then I found I could be happier staying in the same office after adopting his idea. We also discussed about marriage and other things and he impressed me a lot because of his sincere attitude toward my question.

A friend in need is a friend indeed. Although he is not around me, every time I feel bad I will tell him. I also told him some secrets, which have never been told to others even my families. Sometimes I take time to write to him in my office especially when there is not too much work to do that day and I found it is a very good way to kill my time. Because he is someone who can listen to my complaints or strange ideas about everything and others will never know them.

Have you found your own secret garden where you can be relaxed and comfortable, where someone is there for you, where someone will listen to you and give you suggestions or comforts? After working a whole day, after your lows, I hope you all can find this place. It will make you feel full of strength and confidence again. Are you tired of current status? Try to find your secret garden and you will never know how much it will help you.
Toastmasters C3 Speech

“Skype: The Whole World Can Talk for Free”

August 16, 2006 Rebecca Chou

We are suffering the most depression period in Taiwan, gaining the same salary but everything gets more and more expensive. We have to pay more for bills of gasoline, water, telecommunication, electricity and gas and pay more for grocery, clothing and other items. But what we earn is not what we get. Our working hours are longer and we have more jobs than before but we did not get more in our bank account. Therefore, some people start to think how to save money. For example, stop driving to work, flushing toilet with used water, turning off the lights after leaving the room or using Skype instead of telephone.

The Internet phone, Skype, is now popular all over the world. It offers free communication for Skype users and once you have a Skype account, you can enjoy chatting with anyone for as long as you want without paying a cent. You can even talk to foreigners for practicing your language ability because once you are on line and open to chat, they can probably find your name and call you for starting conversations easily. Even long-distance romance can be maintained well through Skype. Adding a webcam, you can see each other clearily. Moreover, you can make domestic and international calls through Skype or call to mobile phones under cheaper rates.

Skype is a little piece of software that lets you talk over the Internet to anyone in the world for free. It is founded in 2003, Luxembourg and is available in 27 languages. Until 2006, there are already 100 million Skype users. The following characteristics may attract your interests to in the Skype familiy.

S: Service of Communication
As mentioned before, for Skype users, any conversations through Skype are free and you can talk whatever and whenever you want without any cost. It still has functions to SkypeIn and SkypeOut. SkypeIn means you can have your own phone number for your friends to call you and you can just answer them through Skype. SkypeOut can let you make calls to traditional landlines or mobiles, that is, you can dial an ordinary phone or mobile phone when needed. The fare rate of these two is cheaper than ordinary phone.

Moreover, the communication can be made among five people at the same time. You can invite the other four to your phone call conversation and you will have chance to tell all of them in one time not separately. Even some firms will use it to make conference call to save money. And the quality of the communication is clear and stable as you are in the conference room.

K: Key-in Message
You can send any instant message to other Skype users just like msn. You can invite any person in your Skype contact list in the same chatting room to share the same message, files or photos.

Y: Young Generation Users
Most users of Skype belong to young generations, which is between 15 to 35 years old. Of course there are elder users but young people are the major ones because they are more accessible to use computers in general.

P: Practicing Language
Since Skype is available for the whole globe, you can set your status as open to chat and people on the line who are looking for a chat will call you by chance. Then you can definitely have chance to practice your language ability. I had one experience before. Some day a guy from Turkey would like to chat with me but at that time I was not in the mood of talking so I didn’t talk to him. However, I had a Spanish pen pal and he also has a Skype account. I hope someday I can have time to talk to him. Because of the time difference, I have to stay up late.

E: Easy to Use
As you can see on the screen, the operation of Skype is easy and simple. You have a main contact list and pressing green or red button to start conversation or to end it. For SkypeIn or SkypeOut, there is a real dial and with simple clicks and microphones, conversations can be started.

You may now wonder how to try it. First, you can find PC Home’s website at and download the software of Skype. Then you have to set up your own account by filling your personal data. Once it is available, you can key-in your account name and password to start it. Every time you turn on your computer, you will be online automatically.

In my company, we have to use Skype everyday because our factory is in the Mainland China. As a sales secretary, we need to confirm the delivery of shipment and everything with our factory to inform our clients so Skype becomes our major source of telecommunication. Believe it or not, our company has saved a lot because of this. Surely you can also benefit from this if you are one of the users!

As a deputy EVP of Tsoying Toastmaster Club, I am curious to know how much we can save from using Skype or msn. If you are also interested, please forward me your Skype or msn account so I can send you agendas through them directly or keep us in touch for free!
Toastmasters C2 Speech

“Spanish—Something You Need to Know”

Rebecca Chou 07/19/06

Can you imagine that some day our national song will be sung in Hakka or Taiwanese? According to the news report, the national song of the U.S., Star-Spangled Banner, is going to have Spanish version. Although it still has a long way to go, this tendency comes up for reasons. Based on the estimated U.S. population, the Latinos who have origins of Latin America including Mexico to Central and Southern America are going to be the majority in 2050.

We all know that the majority is Anglo Americans and the second largest group is African Americans. However, in the twenty-first century, the Latinos are more important than before because it is the first time they become the largest minority group. Today, I’d like to suggest you to take your chance to learn Spanish because it is possible to be an official language in the U.S. Besides that, due to the below facts, Spanish is something you need to know.

Fact I: Geographic Dimension
There are over thirty countries speaking Spanish, that is, almost one fifth of the world using the same language. Most of them are in America; however, some are in Europe and Australia. The most surprising one is the United States because more and more Latin Americans moved out of their homeland and go to a better place for living. So far there is approximately one forth of them in the U.S. as so-called the “Latinos”. Observers and Experts think it is possible that they will make this country becoming Spanish-speaking in the future.

Fact II: Population Growth
The Latino population growth is far beyond you can image. Recent years the average birth rate is less than 1.2 children in the world. Most countries are worried of aging population and the only growing area is in Africa, Latin America and some Asian countries. Due to the human movement, more than forty million Latinos, which is almost one time of Taiwan population and becomes the largest minority in 2000. This is the first time that Africans Americans are no longer has the same influence as before. Experts even predict that in 2050 the Latinos will be the majority and the Anglo Americans will be minority. If we can live longer, we can definitely have chance to see a Spanish U.S.A.

For instance, right now in New Mexico state, the 53% of the whole population is Latinos and according to the statistics, over half million of Latinos are gathered in 13 states. They are from right to left New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Illinois, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, Washington and California.

Fact III: Economic Potential
The economic power of Latinos is obvious from the advertising, media channels and remittance amount. No matter the outdoor or press and TV advertisements all have Spanish to attract the Latinos because of their strong buying power. The remittance amount to their homeland is also amazing. Based on the research, scholars found that several Latin American countries depend on this money for survival because it is the prime source of foreign currency. Even the current U.S. President Washington Bush would take actions to limit this money flow out once but failed because nothing can stop it.

The Latinos also build up a new atmosphere. Since 1976 every year in mid September, they will celebrate “Hispanic Heritage Month” because five Latin American countries became independent in this month, for example, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala. They will show their traditions of dances, songs and other cultural ceremonies in the U.S. society. We all heard of words like tango, salsa, samba, bossa nova very often and some would like to learn these kinds of dances in their spare time.

The upcoming Spanish singers and media channels provide us a better answer of this Latin trend. You can watch Latin Grammy Award and several Spanish channels, such as, Telemundo and Vision, the top two national TV channels. The audience rating is even higher than CNN or Discovery. Right now the Latin American soap operas “telenovelas”, novels on TV, are the hottest programs for the Latinos. Meanwhile, Carlos Santana, Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Lopez, Ricky Martin and so on make more money from selling their albums. If you have not noticed this, you had better catch up with it now.

Learning Spanish will never be too late. My university professor had told us her trip in New York and because she could speak Spanish, the waitress in the restaurant gave her better service and more food. After showing your language ability to the Latinos, you will find how it works for reducing the gaps between each other. Want to learn it? Try to attend courses immediately or you will miss it, a whole new Spanish America!