International Speech Contest — Round 3 Speech take-away

This is for polishing the story/speech for Round 3. I and my coach/mentors met for few hours and we decided one of my experiences we want to use for next round of International Speech Contest Round 3. We have the script, but it needs to be polished. What I request from you is:
  1.     What is your take-away message after reading this story?
  2.     What, if any, questions is unanswered or any question you have and is not covered in the story?
  3.     What are your suggestions to improve the script
      Please overlook grammatical errors as of now, just concentrate on the message strength and quality. 
      Thanks for your comments, 

The Transition

Life is a journey, you travel from place to place, in this journey you sometimes meet people whom you just can’t forget. Among these unforgettable ones, there is always that one person who takes away your hopes and spirits, who always sees a glass as half empty but never fill that glass. And when you try to fill that glass, they drink water from that glass to make it half empty again?
                On my way to 21 years of age, I was the most pampered child of my family, well most because I am the oldest one, oh wait, the youngest one, no wait ….. I am the only one child of my parents, youngest in my generation and slimmest of them all. I was all set to begin my next journey; I was so excited when I got my ticket for LAX Airport for 6th of August, 2007. All my excitement turned into a big question mark when this 5 feet, 2 inch tall, fat lady said to me – “All life-long you lived like a prince at home, in US you will just become a guttery boy. Get ready to do work like cooking, laundry, cleaning restroom, driving, and studying – umhmm, you are the only child of your parents, you have never left home, don’t you have enough to eat and earn here? Why do you want to go? You won’t find Indians there. You won’t be able to make it. Don’t go or you will regret forever.” I thought – “I have no answer for you now lady but hey Indians and potatoes are everywhere.”
                August 6, 2007, when I reached at the airport, I realized there was no one to carry my bag outside the airport, I was further upset, how will I go on? I reached home, next day when I cooked – O My God, I made Indian food which tasted like Australian – tasteless and yucky. She was so right, I never cooked even once in India- my Mom used to feed me. Next week, I cleaned my clothes and ironed them – back in India, I had servants and cleaners – back at home, I never had washed a cloth, not even folded them, no cooking, no cleaning dishes, not even driving – I had driver for our family. She was so damn right – I was such a failure at everything. This journey of my life changed my life entirely ! I continued to live like this, ended up getting a good job, position and independence. 
                January 24, 2012 – I got chance to meet her again, in India. She said with a pride– “So, You are still your own servant – you still cook, clean, iron, drive, earn, do the dishes for yourself – its so funny, I told you these things 5 years back, you never listened and still doing these menial jobs.” How could I have replied to her, she was damn right that I was cooking, cleaning, ironing, driving, earning, doing the dishes and all other jobs which she called menial. Even though, I completed my Masters, I earned my own job and getting independent, I could not answer her. Because the answer there was not for her, the answer was for myself <Long Pause> This was the time when I had realized the value of hard-earned money my Dad used to earn, the value of food which my Mom cooked for me. But more than that, I realized the value of efforts of my maid made in cleaning and keeping my home shining, the value of sweat my cleaner shed for washing and ironing my clothes, the value of labor my driver put-in to drop me in any and every condition on time and safely. No work is menial but importantly, no individual is “menial.” If I would not have wear their shoes, I would not have felt their pains, if I would not have done the same tasks which they all were doing for me years after years, my connection with them would have been – me and a maid, as me and cook and as me and a driver. I realized that I no longer see them as maid, servant, cleaner, cook or driver – but I now see these people as PEOPLE. This was my transition from I and You to “WE”.
                More often than not, we distinguish a person based on their work, as a person of other color, as a person of other country, as a person of “OTHER CATEGORY”. But there is just one CATEGORY- People, rest all are just the borders between our hearts. We are people first, and then we belong to a workgroup, race, religion or country. The world can survive with the borders among the nations but this border between our hearts needs to be erased. I have erased mine – you are my people, Am I Yours ? 

13 thoughts on “International Speech Contest — Round 3 Speech take-away

  1. hi Pulkit,
    Really a great speech very touching and real.
    following are my comment
    1) Take away : There is no I no You only “WE”
    2) Questions : I think it covers all the answers.
    3)suggestion : just if you can add that what your Mom and Dad suggested regarding how to stay there while going to USA, because you are going to a country where you don't know the People, what they like and what they think of others country people but still they accepted you as a WE. I am not sure how relevant my suggestion. you can discuss with others and can avoid or add it 🙂

    Add yes ALL THE VERY BEST.



  2. Hey,
    Nice speech!
    Just the last line was sounding bit wierd.. You are my people, Am I yours? Couldn't relate to this…

    Take-away: All people are equal.
    Questions: who was that lady?
    suggestion: pointed above

    All the best,


  3. Vickey, Thanks for reading it bro. Good suggestion made – let me see how and where I can fit in what you recommended. Speech should be wrapped up in 7 minutes but I think this will make a good point of exaggerating “pampered” life.
    I will share further.

    Thanks again for your feedback, you will see good changes soon.



  4. Good Question Arshi, I think I need to clarify how exactly I reacted to that lady and who was she ??
    And thanks for writing Take-away message, because this story can give many messages – I would emphasize the one which most people take. I don't believe I am still writing “things” and asking people to give feedback 🙂 Lol



  5. Hey Pulkit nice one!

    It's touchy I can suggest some example of driver or maid helping you out in some very bad situation can help as to what u would do when the situation comes to u in their shoes. Means they while just doing their job gave a teaching to u kind of msg. And also I think it can be clearly mentioned that in Imdia people are divided by the work they do and thus the importance of being human is lost somewhere. This is how we are told to think since beginning but unless we place ourselves in their shoes sometime in life sooner or later we don't really understand their importance.



  6. Good suggestion — you gave me a missing link !!! I will implement this that I was programmed to think like this. And also, that value of humanity is lost somewhere ….

    Thanks Parag .. I will call you sometime soon . I know I have missed your bday !!


  7. take away do not discriminate with any parson on the basis of anything a human is a human

    question how long do you think your speech will be effective . I mean do people really change their perception after listening to a speech .

    otherwise it's a nice speech

    suggestions just add my questions answer into your speech

    i know i m not matured enf to ask or suggest u anything
    but I think it will be useful for you ……


  8. Hi Pulkit,

    This is superb and very heart touching! Hope this would also change my perception towards our servants/maids, and yes I'll try to remember this as long as possible. Anyways….

    Take-away – I as We!! Transformation from I to We
    Questions – Does that lady actually exist?
    My two cents – Well I don't have enough wisdom to comment on this, just minor one – Since we are educated/programmed to think it this way
    Try to add some example which should be a kind of solution on how can we make people (especially the kids) thinking out of these borders, either by teaching them to respect every human or may be some other way. The end should have some kind of conclusion or solution!

    Please discuss this with other and feel free to avoid 🙂



  9. Hi Gaurav,

    The speech might not even change one individual, motive is sincerity with which I deliver my message 🙂 .. Will try my best. I will reword what you said to incorporate in speech and the result will be posted soon ..

    Thanks bro,


  10. Thanks bhaiya, yea this lady exists and to answer this question, I should mention m relationship with her. Good missing link !!

    I agree, end shold be a kind of solution, while current ending is just a question — I need to re-think the conclusion.

    Hope everything's great on your side ..


  11. Hi Pulkit,
    Nice script buddy! I found the message pretty clear and the script leaves an impact.
    1. No task is menial, and we as people are equal
    2. Come out of the shell to experience a different person within

    I felt that the lines were unclear and don't quite gel with the script. Read it again and again to see if it sounds good to you, else you may alter the sentence to make it effective- “who always sees a glass as half empty but never fill that glass (what do you mean by it? your story doesn't address this point). And when you try to fill that glass, they drink water from that glass (????) to make it half empty again?”

    Also, not sure if it matters considering the time constraint of the speech, but you can try answering this-
    1. Did that lady comment out of her experience or just because her intentions were always to dissuade and demotivate? Or that she is too rich (which seems likely) to have these opinions.
    2. Was the lady really important in your family circle? (I mean a regular member of family, or once-a-lifetime meeting, or a neighbor)
    3. What were your reasons for going to US? I mean just for an experience (which would have been shallow and a reason for the lady to demotivate you), or for higher studies, or to blow up your parents money (I know not true :D), or you wanted to create your own identity & get out of the shell [in which case obviously the lady wanted to demotivate you :)]
    4. I would have expected a transition in the last lines of 3rd para- “She was so damn right – I was such a failure at everything. This journey of my life changed my life entirely ! I continued to live like this, ended up getting a good job, position and independence.”
    [I mean you said you started believing you were a failure, but suddenly you got successful in the end like a stereotype bollywood story ;)]

    Last- See if you would want to change some words/expressions
    a. guttery boy
    b. tall fat lady
    c. tasted like Australian – tasteless and yucky
    It gets ironical because you are talking about equality, and these statements are a little extremist 🙂

    I know I've written too much, but hope some of it helps! 🙂
    Good luck 😉


  12. MRB 🙂

    Half filled, Half empty – joke will be out of next script or reworded or polished — definitely it needs to be changes such that it fits in the story.

    A1 – I have to carefully plan this lady because, from all of the comments above I feel, she is taking the concentration away from the message.t
    A2 – Same as A1 .. Good questions– a perfect speech is one which does not leave questions in audience minds.
    A3 – You just gave me a perfect reason — I would pick one of these three reason in the next script to boost my reason to come to US .. burning money ould be used humorously:)– but the identity on is what i am looking for
    A4 — Haa I am working in next script on transition.

    I might keep these words to show the extremism of myself initiallym and then I will use them again in the conclusion saying it doesnt exist anymore … Though i will reword everything.

    And yes thanks for being so detailed — you not only wrote questions, but also gave me few ideas to write the next improved script….

    Thank-you so much man, this was truly very helpful


  13. Dude,
    Hope so that i am not too late for the reply (u should't ignore my surname for that)

    MY VIEWS:-

    Take away Msg:-

    >You value the same person or a job more if u have firsthand experience for it.

    >Prejudices are are the biggest barriers in the world.

    Unanswered or unclear issues:

    22, u have written (sequentially) u were pampered……the only child…… get a USA ticket….

    It states that u have lived a good life, u r going to USA, but why…..?
    1—its bcoz ur parents are rich…?
    2—u are the only child so u do what u want..?

    if ans is not 1 or 2, u shld read 3 or else its obvious.

    3—- for something else, may be a break or to prove something?

    So need to clear this… or in case u want to elaborate, u can put some thing here..

    Also, when u describe the lady's word on you return…u didnt answer her…
    I think,u would have answered her-

    ” Damn right lady, I still cook,
    and I cook well,
    I clean my house, bcoz its my own mess.
    I drive myself bcoz I knw where i am going….”

    smthng on that lines,
    Bcz u have grown and learned but what abt that lady( or the belief that she stands for)

    you need to put ur views as well( its upto her to accept or reject) bcz in the end of ur speech u ask people to change, but u do not answer the lady, so shall u expect people to change if u do not stand for wht u believe….?

    and who is this lady and whats ur relation, u need to clear that bcz that will directly explain her role and importance in the story…

    Hope i was helpful….


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