“A Bit Short” – Toastmasters Humorous Speech Sample from The Humorous Speech manual
I recently delivered a very funny yet inspirational speech titled “A Bit Short” at our Club’s International Speech Contest about falling short of our goals at the last minute and the importance of “going all the way” in order to achieve success. This is an extract from my Toastmasters Humorous Speech Sample.
Many years back, I had a huge crush on a girl from my school. She was smart. I was dumb. She was tall. I was short. She was beautiful – I was not. But since opposites attract, at least I thought we were a match made in heaven.
Every time I saw her I could hear music play in the background. Every time she smiled at me, my heart stopped beating. Every time she spoke something, I could hear nothing else. I was truly madly deeply in love. But there was only one problem – I didn’t have the guts to tell her that.
After two years of being constantly taunted and jeered at by my friends, I gathered some courage to meet her on Valentine’s Day. I kneeled down with a rose, looked into her eyes and said – “will you be friends with me?” She said, “Puneet even though I loved you too, but I hate you for taking so long… I just got engaged two days ago.” OUCH! I fell a bit short.
Contest Chair, fellow Toastmasters, and guests have you ever fallen short?
Speaking of falling short, a few months ago, I was visiting a doctor’s clinic near my house with my wife. As I parked the car outside the doctor’s clinic and stepped outside I saw a little stray dog come towards me. There was something weird though – that dog looked like an astronaut from outer space. When I saw closely, the dog’s head was trapped in a big plastic jar and he was constantly bumping himself against something or another. I was running very late for the appointment and since the doctor was about to leave, I went inside. After thirty or so minutes, I came out of the clinic to find that dog still sitting there.
I asked a security guard who was standing nearby, about what had happened. He mentioned that some naughty kids had enticed him to eat something in the jar and after he got trapped – they left him there after their share of laughs was over. The dog had been like that for two days and he was fatigued, dehydrated and almost out of breath. I decided I was going to help him. I went closer to him and tried to pull the jar out. The dog cooperated initially but when I pulled too hard, the jar got stuck in his neck even tighter. I had inadvertently completely blocked the minor source of oxygen from which he was breathing. The dog started gasping for breath and his eyes started turning red.
I ran to my car to find a sharp object but I only found a plastic fork. I tried to make a hole in the plastic jar but the fork broke. I was desperately racing against time. But, after applying a lot of pressure on the hard jar using the handle of the broken fork, I was able to make a small hole. The dog started breathing again and ran away. I was so relieved that *I* was not going to be the man who killed the dog.
But then, I as I sat in my car, I recollected the numerous incidents in my life when I had given up at the last minute. Even though I had punctured the jar, I probably gave the dog just one more day to live before he would die of dehydration and hunger.
I ran behind that dog who was hiding under a car, pulled him out and pinned him down with help from my wife. I asked one of the people watching the show by now to bring some cooking oil and a pair of scissors. I thought I would first try to lubricate his neck and try to wriggle his head out. But this creative trick also failed since the jar was too tight.
I somehow delicately squeezed in one blade of the scissor under the rim of the jar and pressed hard. But the rim didn’t break. I and my wife pressed the scissor handles with all our might but the scissor slipped narrowly missing his ear. But the jar still didn’t break open. I was running out of options when finally I saw some sand on the roadside. I still don’t know how the bulb lit up in my head, but I sprinkled some sand on the scissor blades and pressed as hard as I could – one more time. Suddenly, I heard a loud sound… “cuttack…” and the rim of the plastic jar broke open. The dog broke free and ran away like a bullet from a gun. That day since I decided that I was *not* going to fall short, I ended up saving a life.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Thomas Edison failed more than 1000 times before he invented the light bulb. Had he stopped at the 1000th attempt, you and I would still be sitting in dark. Henry Ford failed and went broke five times before he invented the first affordable car. Had he stopped at the 4th attempt, we would all be riding horses. Elon Musk failed three times before launching the massively successful Falcon rocket. Because of his persistent efforts, we may one day commute to and fro from Mars.
So, friends – when you try – try all the way – and if you feel like giving up next time, I urge you to walk one extra mile, work one extra day, stretch one extra hour and you will be amazed at what happens when you don’t fall short.
For more Toastmasters Humorous Speech Sample and Inspirational Speech examples, peruse through my collection of speech samples.
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