To Auntie Em

“In our world of big names, curiously, our true heroes tend to be anonymous.”

That’s from the historian Daniel Boorstin. It could have been the theme of this week’s meeting. No one planned it, but member after member weighed in with a little sketch of somebody in their life who inspires them.

Mary Lou announced she had to leave early. That’s because there was a party for her awesome and beloved “Auntie Em.” Auntie Em is a “giver.” She’s the kind of person who, when she comes over, immediately starts loading the dishwasher. Auntie Em has inspired Mary Lou to develop the Auntie Em reflex in herself. Now when she meets people, she looks at them and asks herself, What is it you need? And then she gives it to them.

Alison came up next to salute her own “Auntie Em,” who was not actually an auntie, or a relative or even a friend. He’s a former Microsoft coder named Ed Barsano who invented something that’s turning her life around. Alison, like all of us, got killed in the recession and is trying to recover her retirement savings. Barsano hatched a “robotic trading” engine that you install in your computer and let its algorithms run while you sleep, buying and selling on its own. Sounds scary, but apparently it’s working. For now there is a rosy glow around Ed Barsano, and his contribution to her life, and Alison raised a glass to Ed.

Finally, Zohra, in her icebreaker speech, gave a hat-tip to her martial-arts teacher. Her sensei. A guy who has turned her not just into a lean, mean machine, but a wiser individual.

Week in, week out, we’re reminded that what matters in life is people. Not things, trends, apps, renos or statutory holidays. People.

To all of our Auntie Ems. Cheers.

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About Vancore Toastmasters

Build your public speaking and leadership skills at a dynamic mid-week, mid-day downtown Vancouver Toastmasters club.
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