Links and Notes - April 18th 2021

When is tech old?

I had a little chuckle today. Some time ago, we lent a few DVD's to a friend of ours. A few days ago, they were returned; our friend was doing a clean up. I'm still not entirely sure what to do with them. Apparently they can't be recycled?

As they were left indecisively on the floor, my son eventually happened upon them. He knows what DVDs are thanks to having been to other places where they are used. But we don't use them. We don't have a DVD player in the first place. So when he took the cases he had no idea what they were. When I told him they were DVDs he was even more confused. To him, DVDs are plastic discs that he's seen in those album style zipped storage cases. I had a chuckle realising I had to explain that DVDs come inside the case. I imagine that if it had been something we used often he'd have learnt intuitively by watching us use them. Something told me that this tech which was so common growing up, had become obsolete in a single generation.

I wonder if that's what makes tech old. When children don't see their parents using the tech, is that the moment that a technology has grown old? Or is it the child who discovers new tech that creates the first step towards deprecating the previous generation.

Where has the local butter gone?

Overnight, it feels like the highland and kotmale butter has vanished off the shelves. There's not a single place where we can find it. Keells, Spar, Cargills, Glomark, and the others all seem to be out of stock. When we search for the item on PickMe, there's only one shop selling it and the shop is perpetually closed.

The only butters that consistently remain are Anchor and Lurpak. Both are imported (I think) and ads therefore considerably more expensive. So where has the local butter gone? Are the import restrictions causing supply chain issues? Or is this a blip due to the New Year? Whatever it is, I hope it resolves soon. I don't like the idea of spending so much on Butter unless absolutely needed.

Toastmasters Division G results

The day finally arrived. After all the training, the nights spent drilling and debating the finer parts of our friend's speech, the Toastmasters District 82/Division G contest was held today. I couldn't be prouder of our friend. He put on a great show. He spoke confidently. And it seemed like between our final practice session and the competition he somehow found a way to add more polish into his speech. Throughout his delivery I high fived my wife and celebrated the special lines all dropped with practiced ease.

Sadly, today was not meant to be his day. I desperately believed that he had placed in the top 3. But that wasn't the case. In fact, of all the people I predicted in the top 3, only 1 was correct. That too, I predicted he would come first and he ended up coming second.

I won't lie. I'm pretty gutted. I really wanted my friend to come through. At this point I find myself scratching my head at the Toastmasters Judging mechanisms. I know what the criteria is and I've been to judging training seminars. It's just the implementation never seems to match what I put down. I thought I'd understand it better as the years passed but I find myself bewildered as always. I promise that this isn't me being salty. At the same time, this is why I opted to stay away from competitions. The end results are so varied. It sometimes feels like a psychometric test whose outcome can change each time its taken. Even when watching the finals of the international speech contest, I've done my own marking only to find that the winner is almost always different.

Deep breath... Sigh

But we can't change the past. We can only look towards the future. I'm just going to be happy that I got the chance to work with someone who was so willing to put in hard work and grow so much over the course of a single month. All that work means that the club now has someone to look up to as inspiration. And that person also understands now what it means to truly train for a speech. Hopefully all this means that we will be able to start pushing the club forward further and further in the near future. The only thing I've ever cared about in Toastmasters is actually raising standards. And I hope we live up to that in the coming year.

This blog doesn't have a comment box. But I'd love to hear any thoughts y'all might have. Send them to [email protected]

Previous links and notes (April 17th)

Next links and notes (April 19th)

Posted on April 18 2021 by Adnan Issadeen