Humor Monologue delivered at Toastmasters meeting – September 16, 2015

From now on, I’m going to explain why a joke did or didn’t work.
You will find the explanation under each joke.
This is to imitate my buddy/mentor John’s blog template (

Read the set-up below and then read the humor monologue.

THE SET-UP (What was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was delivered)

1. It was raining heavily the whole day. Generally, it rains on most days in the Netherlands.

2. Floris’ speech topic was TBD (To Be Decided). He gave the audience 3 topics and asked us to choose one.

3. There were 2 guests named Brent and Noor. The host, Justina, asked them to introduce themselves. They started talking together, for which Justina said, “Not together. One after another.”

4. Justina, the host, asked the audience to give a big round of applause whenever the speaker was coming to the stage or leaving the stage. She said she is a big fan of applause.

5. The tabletopic master said that in the year 1752, after Sep 2, Sep 14 appeared in the Gregorian calendar. 11 days were lost. The topic was, “What would you do if you had 11 extra days in an year?”

6. Floris explained the dangers of cloud computing. Maria asked Floris a question: How can I retrieve the data in my laptop (not in the cloud) if my house burns down?

7. Floris also explained that 3D printer can be used to make innovative objects.

8. Most speakers talked over time.

9. Bogdan talked about “Distinguished Club”. He read a letter from Toastmasters America which announced our club as distinguished club. He first said that it’s addressed to him (since he’s the president) but later said, “It’s actually addressed to all of us”.

10. Bogdan also said a story about a rich man and how he planned to get his daughter married. He called all bachelors in the surroundings. He announced a contest. i.e. A pool full of alligators and other dangerous animals. The person who jumps and reaches the other side first can either get 1 million in cash or 1000 acres land or marry his daughter. As soon as he announces one person jumps and reaches the other side. The rich guys asks him whether he wants 1 million. He says no. He asks if he wants 1000 acres land. He says no. He asks if he wants to marry his daughter. He says no. Then what do you want, he asks. I want to know who pushed me into the water.

11. Eindhoven, the city where we live, is in a state called ‘Noord Brabant’.

12. Justina said that sometimes we have barbecue at Toastmasters.

13. In the agenda, there was no 3rd speaker. There were 1st, 2nd, and 4th speaker. The 3rd speaker dropped out.

The Humor Monologue

1. My humor monologue topic is TBD. I give you 3 joke formats. Choose the one you want
     a. Yo mama so fat
     b. A Toastmaster walks into a bar
     c. Why did the chicken cross the road?
(A call-back to TBD. And everyone is familiar with these joke formats and they are funny)

(The audience say ‘Number 2’)
2. Ok, so 3, it is.
(Giving them a choice was just a fake thing since I already decided it’s 3. So they laugh).

3. Why did the chicken cross the road? Someone pushed it.
(A call-back. And you feel pity for the chicken)

4. A Toastmaster walks into a bar. Justina asks everyone to give him a big round of applause.
(A call-back. And clapping for someone in the bar is absurd.)

(I take out a letter from my pocket and show that to the audience)
5. I got this letter. Addressed to me. No, addressed to all of us. [looks closely at the letter] Oh wait. Forget it. It’s a love letter I got from a girl.
(A love letter addressed to many people is absurd)

6. If we had a guest named ‘Debra’, it would’ve been great. [After saying this, I write “De Bra” on the board]
(Huge laughter. They were thinking dirty)

7. [I write ‘Noor’ (a guest’s name) in front of ‘De’ and ‘Brent’ (another guest’s name) next to ‘Bra’. So it looks like ‘Noorde Brabrent’]
That’s our state.
(Huge response. They didn’t see it coming. Also it’s a tension-release joke. Clever word arrangement)

8. Why didn’t the chicken join Toastmasters? Because it heard that we sometimes make barbecue.
(A call back. And you feel pity for the chicken)

9. Floris explained the dangers of cloud. He missed one point. When you’re on the way to Toastmasters, it starts raining heavily.
(Truth. Most members were wet)

10. Maria, don’t worry. Your house will never be on fire. In the Netherlands, it rains 24*7.
(Truth. Though it doesn’t rain everyday in the Netherlands, the comic license allows me to use this line because everyone jokes about raining in England and the Netherlands)

11. If you give me 11 extra days in September, I would rather ask for 11 extra days in June.
(Truth. In September, the weather is not so nice. Good response)

12. What would I like to make with 3D printer? 3d speaker. [I write 3D speaker on board] [Then I add an ‘r’ before ‘d’] 3rd speaker.
(Wordplay joke)

13. Bogdan, I want to reveal a secret. I was the one who pushed you.
(Drop into someone’s story)

14. A lot of speakers went overtime. To finish this meeting, we’ll need extra 11 days.
(Exaggeration joke)

15. All of you, clap now. Not together. One after another.
(A call-back and a silly suggestion. Silly is funny)

Humor Monologue delivered at Toastmasters meeting – August 19, 2015

Read the set-up below and then read the humor monologue.

THE SET-UP (What was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was delivered)

1. The stage was reversed. Normally where we have the stage was the backside, and the backside was the stage today.

2. One of the table topics was “You’re the mayor of Eindhoven. You have to bring in something that’s missing in Eindhoven. What’s that missing thing?”

3. Justina started her speech by talking about people doing uncommon things like living on a tree.

4. Pierre didn’t have any role. So, the table-topics master invited Pierre to talk on a topic. While inviting, he said, “I invite you because you aren’t doing much tonight.”

5. Tobias talked about a person climbing Mt. Everest without oxygen cylinders. That was a record since all climbers normally use oxygen cylinders.

6. Generally in the Netherlands, it’s quite common that bikes get stolen. Especially in Eindhoven.

7. Tobias asked everyone as to why we like to come to toastmasters meetings, for which Winslow said, “I like shouting.”

8. Justina talked about a guy who traveled around the world by bike.

9. The ‘Ah’ counter said that Jitske used too many filled word ‘Ah’ and he called her the ‘Ah queen’.

10. Chris talked about a girl who got 3 B’s, but still wasn’t able to get the course that she wanted to do.

11. Winslow talked about diabetes. He showed a sample of glucose molecule. It had white, red, black dots connected together.

12. Winslow asked some volunteers to test his needle. Pierre volunteered. Winslow was supposed to act like injecting the needle. But by mistake, he actually injected. And Pierre got blood.

13. There was a wall clock behind the stage.

The Humor Monologue

1. [I turned away from the audience] Good evening toastmasters, guests, mayor, and ah queen.

2. I’m one of them. I’m one of them. Doing uncommon things (showing the audience my back, and speaking).

3. Ok, just kidding. It’s much easier to keep track of timing [looks at the wall clock behind the stage]

4. Hey Pierre. Laugh at my jokes. Because you’re not doing much tonight.

5. I come to toastmasters because I like… putting people to sleep.

6. There is an Indian saying “You become a HALF doctor only when you kill at least 1000 people.” In my case, “I become a HALF speaker only when I put at least 1000 audience to sleep”.

7. Today I’m planning for a world record speech. Normally I wouldn’t get on to the floor without 3 oxygen cylinders, 6 bottles of water, and 16 napkins.

8. The guy who reached the top of Mt. Everest heard little noise. He then thought, “Oh, that’s Winslow shouting from earth.”

9. The guy who traveled all over the world by bike came to Eindhoven too. His bike was stolen.

10. Now you know the answer to the question “What’s missing in Eindhoven?” Bikes.

11. One guy loses his bike, steals another. That guy loses his, and steals another. This goes on and on. Like a ‘cycle’.

12. It’s called bi-cycle. But nobody does ‘BUY’ cycle.

13. These were actually white [points to the red dots in the glucose molecule], but then Winslow did the impromptu of testing his needles on many people.

14. Chris’ friend got too many B’s and still couldn’t get into the course she wanted. But Jitske can get into any course she wants, because she has many ‘A’s.

15. I am finishing my speech now… unless Winslow wants to shout something.

Humor Monologue delivered at Toastmasters meeting – August 5, 2015

Read the set-up below and then read the humor monologue.

THE SET-UP (What was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was delivered)

1. Word of the day was ‘progress’. Word of the day 6 weeks ago was also ‘progress’.

2. One of the guests was Debolina. She introduced herself and said “If my name is hard to pronounce, just call me Debi.”

3. All table topics were about science and space.

4. The evaluator said the speakers could move around the stage (not just stand in the same place).

5. Justina used 20*20 powerpoint method. i.e. 20 slides each 20 seconds automated. She kept up with the pace of the slides. She showed 2 slides “Expectation: Audience who’re listening. And reality: sleeping audience.”

6. Her speech evaluator went over time, took 3 minutes and 20 seconds. He said that the text in Justina’s slides were not visible and in light blue color.

7. Floris talked about the alternative for PowerPoint (called impress.js). He finished his speech by saying “That’s the end of PowerPoint era.” His speech evaluator said that a better ending would be “Do you *still* want to use PowerPoint?”

8. Chris was wearing spectacles for the first time.

9. Inna said “Employee attention strategy” instead of “Employee retention strategy”. Her speech evaluator pointed that out.

10. When the toastmaster introduced me as the Observational Humor Master, he said that in 4 weeks the humorous speech contest is coming up and the audience can learn something from my obs. humor speech.

11. One of the guests, Anna, told that she would want to become a member since she was impressed by our club.

The Humor Monologue

1. Good evening toastmasters, guests, and pre-member.

2. I want to have you full retention.

3. I am Balakumar Shanmugam. If it’s hard to pronounce, just call me Debi.

4. If you want to win the humorous speech contest, just listen carefully to my speech, and not follow any of what I do.

5. Toastmasters club is progressing. It’s in Amsterdam. It’s in Eindhoven. It’s in Utrecht. Next, we’ll have one in space.

6. One advice to all speakers: While our scientists are busy exploring *that* space, let’s at least try to explore this space [points to the dias]

7. Word of the day 6 meetings ago was ‘progress’. Word of the day today is ‘progress’. W.r.t the word of the day, it’s time we made some progress.

8. What do the audience expect from me? A *great* speech. Reality? I sleep on stage. I use a lot of space on the stage.

9. Normally Chris doesn’t wear spectacles. But today he knew that Justina was going to use PowerPoint.

10. Justina used 20*20 format. Her speech evaluator went over time. He should’ve used 10*10 format.

11. That’s the end of my speech. Oh wait.. Do you *still* want to listen to my speech?


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