Series: Advanced Communication
Manual: Humorously Speaking
Project: 5 – The Humorous Speech
Title: What my new bride had to put up with
Fellow toastmasters. I was not always the smooth, suave sophisticate you see before you now (in jandels, shorts and t-shirt). There were many rough edges my new bride had to polish over. Here are some of the things my new bride had to put up with.
Appropriately enough, the first topic revolves around food (pat a rather large belly).
I ate fast. I had learned to while growing up. The best times were sharing fish ‘n chips with mates. But when you’ve got guy mates and fish ‘n chips, you learn how to eat quickly in order to get your fair share. In fact, we invented a way to blow on our hot chips and eat them at the same time. Here’s how: (demo, loudly sucking in hot chips).
When it came to food habits, instantly there was a clash of expectations. I expected to eat fast in order to get more. She expected to eat slow and enjoy the meal. And, she would leave the best parts until last. This caused some small amount of difficulty. I would finish my plate, then assume she was leaving behind the part she didn’t want. Boy, was I wrong! Don’t try and steal the food off the plate of your bride. Not good. (Mime being stabbed in the hand by a fork.)
I learned that my bride was a great cook, but initially I didn’t realise this. She would serve up amazing meals, only to have me, if not exactly reject them, then at least merely accept them without comment. This caused her some concern. So, we sat down together, and listed the foods that I didn’t like. It turned out, there were 3 pages of A4, double-sided, that I didn’t like! Then, she systematically went through the list and prepared meals in new and imaginative ways. It was then that I discovered something about myself: it wasn’t that I didn’t like those foods; it was that I didn’t like the way my mother used to boil everything to death!
Another thing my bride had to put up with, was a tendency towards uneducated over-enthusiasm. Let me give you an example. At our church one week, we had a visiting preacher teach us on Spiritual Warfare prayer. This is where you pray against the works of the devil. The preacher encouraged us to be vigorous in our exhortations. So, being part Maori, I thought it would be cool to mix prayer with a haka. However, there’s one particular manoeuvre which I hadn’t quite mastered. This is where you pretend to punch the ground. (Demo) Except, I accidently connected. And broke the knuckle of my little finger.
This made for an interesting explanation at the A&E. “This looks like a typical break as a result of a punch. Were you fighting?” – “No, I was praying.”
“Oh. Remind me not to visit your church.”
The last thing my bride had to put up with was a flair for the dramatic. An example of this was when we were both interns at our church. At one point, it was left up to us five interns to prepare and present an entire service. Things were going swimmingly, until we got to the offering time. We had decided to dress up as the cast from the Blues Brothers, play the Peter Gunn theme, and with toy guns “demand” the tithe. After all, “we were on a mission from God.” Apparently, this was the worse offering that church had ever received. We were never asked to do that again. In fact, I’ve just realised, this may be the reason we were never allowed back on stage again.
So, women are from Venus, men are from Mars and vive la difference!