Last Friday my brother Caleb and I were in a speech competition. We each got to pick a speech of our choice as long as it was a known speech, given by someone else. I chose On Women’s Right to Vote by Susan B. Anthony. If you’ve never heard it before, you should look it up- It’s actually really good (but not grammatically correct!) The speeches were to be around five minutes long and we had to memorize them. The competition was to be formal: long gowns for the ladies, suits and ties for the gentlemen.
Well, Caleb and I had practiced hard for almost seven weeks before the day of the competition. It was time. The two of us where dead last in line to give our speeches. I walked up on stage and began. I remembered to project my voice. I remembered to breathe. I remembered to move my hands. I remembered to speak into the microphone. I even remembered not to step on my dress. Then, during the third paragraph, I forgot my speech! During a speech competition it’s ok if you forget all the little stuff, just so long as you remember the speech. That’s not how I went about it! I had to think fast. I decided to make it up as I went along. I changed the preamble of the constitution before remembering the rest of the speech. :)
Looking back on it, it’s funny, but at the time I thought I had just failed the competition. In the end, though, Caleb and I got first and second places. I guess winning isn’t always about doing it right; it’s about doing your best (and rolling with the punches!) This is a school year I’ll never forget.