Sunday, September 14, 2014
2 - 4:30 p.m.
Knox College, Room 4, 59 St. George Street,
between College & Harbord
Entrances on St. George and King's College Circle,
acessible entrance from lot on north side of Knox.
Street parking or lot available
Topic: DISCOVERING MY FAMILY
IN WORLD WAR ONE
Presenter: MARGARET STOWE
Musician, Teacher, Writer
Margaret Stowe is a guitarist, bandleader, teacher, producer, writer and several other things. She has recorded and performed with a host of Canadian/Inter- national artists all over Canada and Europe, from Massey Hall to the Louvre. She is best described in a review from the Prague Post: "Stowe's departure point is jazz, but her style ranges from folk to blues to world beats, propelled by her trademark high energy and eclectic tastes. She is listed in the Canadian Encyclopedia of Music, and is the proud owner of a CIUT-FM Porcupine Lenny Breau Award.
Margaret has performed in musical theatre and played with symphony orchestras. She has three CDs and can be found on recordings by others including Mose Scarlett, Daisy DeBolt and Beverly Glenn Copeland, CBC recordings-TBS Women's Blues Revue Live (Massey Hall), CBC Saturday Night Blues 20 Years, and Borealis Records Six Strings North of the Border. Her latest CD is a guitar duet with Toronto guitarist/producer Tony Quarrington. Occasionally you can find her playing live with Max Woolaver Band, Priscilla Wright, Lara Solnicki, Brenda Lewis, and others.
A teacher, she offers guitar classes at all levels and various styles, including jazz/blues for the Toronto School Board. In her studio Ozworld, she recently produced a heralded CD of down tempo introspective nostalgia by songwriter Zoe Henderson, and a commentary, original songs and drawings by Chuck Last.
In 2013, she embarked on an ancestral journey that would blow her mind and reshape her list of goals and dreams. As chance (or planning) would have it, a newly found passion for her family history would lead her to discover a treasure of WWI stories left unremembered for exactly 100 years until now, the Centenary year, 2014. Margaret tells the story of this discovery. Ulysseans have a rare opportunity to hear personal stories of World War I.
Visitors are welcome
OCTOBER GENERAL MEETING
Date: October 19, same time and place as above
Note: Changed to 3rd Sunday of the month due to
Topic: RESIDENT-DRIVEN THEATRE
IN LONG TERM CARE HOMES
Presenter: ADELE KOEHNKE, sole proprietor of Adele's Stories, artist
NOVEMBER GENERAL MEETING
Date: November 9 same time and place as above
Presenter: JOHN RAE
Memoir Writing Workshop
Friday, September 19, 1:30-3:30 p.m. at Virginia Rock's home near Bay/Bloor. Please RSVP Virginia if interested in attending
Date and Place TBA. Please contact Vivian Haar if interested in attending and working on a presentation for a Ulyssean Mosaic
Saturday, September 20, and October 18, 2:00-4:00 p.m. Wychwood Library, 1431 Bathurst St. Contact: Marie Paulyn
MOSAIC Planning Lunch
Monday, October 6, 12-1:30 p.m.
Granite Brewery & Restaurant, 245 Eglinton Ave. E.
(enter from Mt. Pleasant)
Contact: Daniel Karpinski
Member News and Events
Plan to stay for our MOSAIC, the shorter portion of our monthly Sunday meeting that follows our refreshment break. Usually these are presented by members. Upcoming segments include our play reading group presenting excerpts from a Canadian play and Virginia Rock sharing her cautionary tale about moving out of a long-held office.
Linda Stitt's next monthly Words and Music program is arranged for Saturday September 6, 1:30-4:30 p.m. at Portobello restaurant, 995 Bay St, just north of Wellesley. Participating performers for the upcoming program include Ulyssean's Pat Bisset as a guest storyteller. Pat presented our July 2012 program, "Native Participation in the War of 1812 in Story and Song." The featured musician is guitarist/vocalist Glen Gary, who led his Three for Four quartet through varied blues/folk/jazz selections that delighted Ulysseans at our anniversary meeting last December. Denise (Diz) Altschul will be included on a future date (not September as we announced in the last newsletter). Past photos and videos are posted at www.lindastitt.com. Watch for an announcement of the October 4 program.
Act II Studio's Information Day is Monday, September 8, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., with an 11:00 a.m. presentation on the benefits and opportunities by Artistic Director Vrenia Ivonoffski. Attendees will learn about the courses and activities offered by this unique theatre school for adults 50 and older. Since its inception in 1988 it has grown and become known internationally as a leader in the unique area of older adult theatre education and creativity, including acting, directing, playwriting and more.
Shirley Gibson will be among the members on hand to welcome newcomers. She hopes to bring some copies of the 2014/15 program catalogue to the September 14 Ulyssean meeting. The event location is Ryerson's Jorgenson Hall, POD 250 (on the second floor at the north end of the building; 380 Victoria Street at Gerrard, just east of Yonge, between College and Dundas subway stations; parking on Victoria with entrance from Dundas). More info at www.act2studio.ca, firstname.lastname@example.org or 416-979-5000 ext 6297.
There will be an additional information session on Wednesday, September 17 at 10:00 a.m. - noon for those interested in the related and unique Caring Clown program. It provides hands-on training of age 50+ volunteers who bring joy, laughter and fun into the lives of residents in long-term care homes. This session at Ryerson is in Room 303, Heaslip House, 297 Victoria St. Information and RSVP at 416-979-5103.
Join some Ulysseans to watch The National Theatre Company (London UK) perform a new version of Euripides' Medea on Thursday, September 4 at 7 p.m. at some Cineplex locations. It will be filmed live with a same-day time-delayed screening. Look for Shirley at the Yonge/Dundas location. Or choose another theatre, or catch it Saturday, October 4 at 12:55 p.m. if you are not attending Linda Stitt's salon at Portobello. Advance tickets are recommended.
Report of our last program - August 10, 2014
THE JOURNEY OF CREATIVE WRITING
Presenter: Patricia McCully
The meeting, held at Knox College on August 10th, was called to order by our President and Program Chair, Virginia Rock. Kwan Shum lit the candle and read the Ulyssean Creed. Virginia welcomed our guests and made several announcements of upcoming meetings and news of our members. (See the updated meeting listings and member news)
Virginia warmly introduced our guest speaker, Patricia McCully, a former teacher and passionate writer. Patricia shared her own experiences and journey in writing, along with the pitfalls and rewards that came with it. Her interest in writing began as a child where her unbounded creativity led her to publish her poems in school. As she grew older, from those creative stories she turned to essays, independent research papers, lesson plans and manuals.
The process of writing turned logical and confined, so the creative part became the structure. Later on Patricia's desire to write surged and she wrote her first book, How to Avoid Presentation Pitfalls. She wanted to write in a unique way, unlike typical textbooks. The process of writing took six months, but she hit a block and eventually had to take a break. As Patricia said, "You can't rush the creative process," and one day it did click; she started writing again and finally completed the book.
The journey was one of "agony and ecstasy but once you are in the pool, you continue swimming." Writing requires patience and trust in your creative side. Patricia knew the process of writing could be frightening so she created a course called Just Write! to attract new writers. Her course was fun, supportive, pressure-free and communal. She encouraged handwriting to stimulate the brain. With just a pen and notebook, she asked participants to fill it up with writing about any topic. In her courses, there is no red pen to pass judgment.
Patricia also explored poetry and wrote on napkins in cafés. She entered a CBC poetry competition and her work was published in the winner's collection. Writing is a wonderful hobby that opens the mind and builds confidence as we can learn for ourselves, she said. It is an activity where we can easily lose track of time and become immersed in the work or flow. Those in later stages of life have the advantage of drawing from their life experiences. For Patricia, the positives of creative writing have far outweighed the negatives.
Beverly Bloom thanked Patricia on behalf of the group and presented her with an honorary membership along with our founder's book The Challenge of Aging.
The Mosaic portion of our meeting followed a break for refreshments. In the tradition of Harold Skarkey, Virginia shared some funny tidbits collected by Shirley Gibson. The meeting concluded with Marvin Goody reading the Ulyssean Benediction and extinguishing the candle.
* Patricia shared her poem A New Stage (below).
A New Stage
Time ticks, marches then races along
To face this older stage you need to stay strong
Youthful looks, desires and dreams fade
Yet different looks, wants and goals can be made
An exciting time of life, it can be a thrill
For the past is full, gone; now for the new it is time to fill
The world looks so different now
Things that were once important, are not somehow
Crazed intensities, heat and musts
Are replaced with mellowed out vibes and trusts
Doing less, being more
Brand new adventures to explore
Staying vibrant and positive is the key
Happy to do and be; mostly just to be
Switching gears from fast-tracking
To strolling, chatting and snacking
Taking life in stride, one day at a time
Stopping to smell the flowers and listen to bells chime
It takes time to adjust to this older age stuff
There are lots of pals in this same group, so it's not so rough
You can sigh and relax about the past
And gear up to live with a fresh, new blast
Helping others, guiding, mentoring, play a big part
So that gives new meaning right from the start
Long ago, passionate romances become a faint glimmer
Now deeper friendships give a warm, comforting simmer
We can keep our hearts and minds alive
With exercise, learning and laughter to help us thrive
After all, there's a lot to look forward to at this new life stage
So keep your spirits up as you turn to the next page
Samples from Just Write!
I have been a student of Patricia McCully for more than a year, taking the course Just Write! five times. I have enjoyed it very much and am going to continue with her.
She starts off with four exercises or sometimes they are interspersed with other things. The exercises, to limber us up, are as follows: Word Play, Triggers and Prompts, Expanding Ideas, and Wild Imaginings. One exercise from Word Play occurs when she gives the class five words to make a paragraph or story out of. Here is one-The five words in this case are: sundae, galoshes, weird, interrupt and flee.
This is what I created:
This Saturday I'll be enjoying a cool, creamy strawberry sundae. Hopefully, outside won't be like Monday, July 8, when it rained down cats and dogs and one needed rubber galoshes and a raincoat to get around.
It was really weird to be out in weather like that where I waited for a bus for 25 minutes with no luck and in which there were dozens of people in the same situation.
It didn't interrupt my day too much as I hailed a cab after 20 minutes of trying and made my way to class where everything went normally after that.
In such an extraordinary situation, one wishes to flee, but sometimes there is nowhere to go.
Bänoo Zan landed in Canada in 2010. In her country of origin, Iran, she taught English Literature at universities. She has published poems, translations, biographies, and articles in print and online publications around the globe. Her book of poetry Songs of Exile will be published in 2016 by Guernica Editions. She hosts Shab-e She'r (Poetry Night) in Toronto the last Tuesday of the month and believes that her politics is her poetry. In June 2012 Bänoo spoke at our Ulyssean meeting, comparing Hafez's Ghazels (Persian sonnets) and Shakespeare's sonnets. She has since attended several of our meetings, and is a regular at Linda Stitt's Portobello afternoons.
What am I about?
Tomatoes have lost
in this garden
where every plant
is a rose
I'm sleeping with
the last vine
expecting an old birth
frame the sky
as lines of poetry
and I am prose
I want me to love me
so I can betray me
and feel bad
I'm on the mattress
on a romantic adventure
I'm banished from
we had met
before we met
and forgotten about it
I'm a pre-verbal priest
as I lift the cup of words
Whose wings am I borrowing?
All I want
is to want
Space is the time
the wake meets the boat
and time is the space
I see the tableau--
I am the one
I fail to grasp
I was waiting for me
But I am walking
light as day
Remembering Dr. William Paul
As mentioned in our previous newsletter, Dr. William Paul, a member of The Ulyssean Society since 2007, died peacefully after a short illness on July 18, 2014 at Toronto Western Hospital.
I first met Dr. Paul and his family at the home of his daughter Lissa, my neighbour in the Annex, on the occasion of his 90th birthday celebration. Somehow we began to talk about global warming; Dr. Paul said he had ideas quite different from those getting wide exposure in the press. So fascinating were some of the thoughts that I asked him if he would share them at a Ulyssean meeting. He said he would be delighted to do so and on February 11, 2007 he spoke on Global Warming. Recently Lissa wrote me that working on that presentation was a great pleasure for him.
Dr. Paul had a long distinguished career in ground-breaking research and teaching at the University of Toronto in the areas of clinical biochemistry and medical physics. In 1950, a year after he began teaching as a lecturer and researcher at the University of Toronto, he established the first radioisotope for the medical faculty, Toronto General Hospital. Devoting full time to his research during the 1950s and into the 1960s, he worked with doctors, pioneering in making oximeters, the device used routinely to test for pulmonary functioning.
A leave of absence in 1970-71 enabled him to continue his research at Middlesex Hospital in London England. There he participated in early research involving radioactive tracer drugs for the thyroid. For many years after his return to Toronto, he taught a post-graduate course in radioimmunoassay to biochemical engineering students. After his retirement in 1983, for the next decade he became more involved in teaching, offering courses in general biochemistry and other related areas.
He had other forms of expression for his interest in the natural world; he enjoyed travelling with his family (for example snorkeling in Mexico) and constructing canoes for use at his cottage. But most of all he focused on enjoying his family-every Friday night, he told me, he would cook dinner for his daughters, their husbands and children. His dinners were special and his pleasure in this ritual was evident. He was a loving and beloved man.
As a retired physicist, he was committed to speaking about subjects that intrigued him. After being an honourary member, he joined The Ulyssean Society in 2008, a cherished member whose presence at meetings was always welcome.
Virginia Rock, Lindsay Wu
A Scent-free Request
We have some regular attendees who are sensitive to strong scents. We are joining many other organizations in requesting our members and guests not to wear them.
Still Accepting 2014 Membership Contributions
The Ulyssean Society is accepting member renewals and new memberships for the 2014 calendar year. Donations will be acknowledged with a tax-deductible receipt. The suggested donation remains $70-100 for single, or $125-200 per couple, but other amounts are accepted.
Please specify preferred newsletter format, printed copy mailed or pdf file attached to an email, and whether you will share your name, phone number and (if applicable) email with other members only.
Cheques payable to The Ulyssean Society are accepted at meetings or send them to the address below (our former Treasurer, Beverly Bloom).
In June forms were enclosed with copies of our newsletter mailed to members who had not renewed. You can request a form, pick one up at a meeting or simply send information and cheque to:
The Ulyssean Society, c/o Beverly Bloom,
421 - 3179 Yonge St., Toronto ON M4N 3P5
Thank you to everyone who has already renewed. Invite your friends to meetings!
Guests are welcome at our meetings
Invite your friends, relatives, acquaintances,
fellow students in the courses you take,
members in other groups you are in
Become an active part of your Society
Help it to continue to function well
The Ulyssean Mantra - A guiding principle
LOVE, LAUGH, LEARN, HEAL, CREATE
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