Many of you know that Son #1 is a Boy Scout (as is Son #2). Son #1 is working on his Communications Merit Badge and one of the requirements it to serve as Master of Ceremonies (emcee) for a Court of Honor or campfire meeting. Last night was the Court of Honor, a quarterly ceremony where scouts are recognized for earning merit badges and achieving rank advancments.
Son #1 has a significant speech impairment. Combine his articulation challenges with his incredibly fast rate of speed (he's put most auctioneers to shame), well, let's say that sometimes it takes a lot of work on the listener's behalf...
That said, Son #1 was allowed to co-emcee with another Boy Scout. The other boy prepared a script (with Son #1's input), divided up the sections. Son #1 practiced over the weekend and I re-sized the script so he could have a small page of notes at the podium.
During the Court of Honor, I made it a point *NOT* to watch him very much because I wanted to hear just his speech, uninfluenced by his facial expressions, gestures, etc. I was so impressed. Of course the articulation issues are still there, but he really worked on his rate of speech. It would've been a much shorter meeting if he emceed solo and spoke at his normal rate. :-)
A couple of times during the evening, there were a few changes to the program (a previously unannounced guest speaker, at one point the co-emcee accidentally traded "lines" with Son #1). It didn't fluster Son #1 at all. He just 'rolled with it.'
So a couple of things jump out at me:
1) he *can* slow down when he really wants to
2) he really does live up to the Boy Scout motto of doing one's best
3) "going with the flow"
4) fearless. Absolutely fearless.
I think he had a lot of fun. I know I enjoyed watching him.