17 January 2010

How to give a toast.....................................

I found this great piece from www.guyville.com . Enjoy!!!!

I found this great piece from Guyville.com - Enjoy!
At some point during your life you'll have to make a toast. A toast is defined as "something in honor in which persons usually drink." It's also defined as "sliced bread browned on both sides by heat." But let's stick with the first one. (ed. Note: we do not cover 'how to make toast' here)
There are two stages to making a toast.
Making the Toast
First, know the specifics of the event. Is it formal? It is a picnic? Does the toast concern one person or a couple? If you are wearing a bow tie and cumber bun (that big ribbon around your stomach), then you'll want to make the toast more eloquent, as you will no doubt be surrounded by people you may be hitting up for money or interviewing with in the future. If you're outside in casual wear, the toast can be casual. By casual, we don't mean attempting to wing it on the spot. Prepare ahead of time.
Don't sweat creating the toast from scratch. Use part of a famous speech, a poem, a quote or even a portion of a love letter in your toast. Use substantial and meaningful words, and eliminate feeble words like "kinda," "nice" and "awesome." Feel free to use humor in your speech, but if you don't feel particularly funny, don't go for the laugh. It is your job to highlight the honored guest, not to work the room like a lounge act. Stories about the guest of honor make great toast material, but don't tell a tale where you have to be an insider to understand. Remember, entertaining yourself should be your least priority. Another note: embarrassing stories make for great laughs and do make their way into toasts, but there is a thin line between gosh-gollie embarrassment and the story about the stun gun and the pony.
Most importantly, this toast is about the honoree, not about you. Avoid stories where you end up talking about yourself. Keep the "I" rule in mind- keep the amount of I's in your toast to a minimum.
Executing the Toast
Practice giving the toast. Say it a few times until you can give it fluidly. If you are using a notecard, be sure you know if well enough so you can keep going if you lose your place.
Keep it brief. Technically, you are entitled to go on as long as you like, however, the longer you talk, the more chance you have of losing your audience's attention (especially when the open bar is nearby). Some of the most poignant toasts are a single line or two.
Direct your toast toward the guest (or guests) of honor. Speak loudly and slowly so even those in the cheap seats can hear you.

Photo Credit: J. Scott Photography

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