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Sisters rehabilitate anything with fur and feathers

By Dianna Troyer Every three to four hours, Toni Hicks cradles a baby squirrel, squeezing a few drops of a special formula into its mouth with a syringe. The squirrel is one of many creatures in her wildlife menagerie. For 25 years, injured or orphaned squirrels, coyotes, raccoons, foxes, fawns, badgers, rabbits, and other animals have found their way into the rehabilitative hands of Boise residents Toni Hicks, 69, and her sister, Mady Rothchild, 63. In the late 1980s, the Boise natives were volunteering with the local Humane Society, helping cats and dogs find homes, when they decided, “We should start a group that helps wildlife,” recalls Toni. In 1987, along with several others, they founded Animals In Distress Association (AIDA) to serve the Treasure Valley and help rescue, rehabilitate and release injured, displaced, or orphaned wildlife. “AIDA will care for anything furred or feathered except raptors and predators like bears or mountain lions, which are transferred to other rehabilitators,” says Toni, gesturing toward the wild creatures in cages in her home and enclosures in her backyard. (Continued on page 17)


PAGE 2 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

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IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 3

Go Leaf-Peeping in Boise Article & Photo By Bernice Karnop Remember standing at the bus stop marveling at the once-green leaves turning un-leaf like colors of gold, orange, or flaming red? What unique memories do you have of raking bushels of fallen leaves into piles so you could jump in and toss the leaves sky-high? Did you like the musty smell of burning leaves, the surprise of sharp cool air, the early dusk? Fall brews its special magic every year, carrying us right into the jack-o-lanterns, black cats, and ghosties of Halloween. While Idaho may not rival New England, we do have trees and bushes that remind us that fall is here. Since most of us wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t drive to the Northeast to get our fall fix, we need to make sure we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss the short window when the fall colors are at their peak in our area. A simple â&#x20AC;&#x153;leaf peepingâ&#x20AC;? drive around Boise neighborhoods is a good place to start. In addition to the yellows, oranges, and browns, you will find yards where homeowners have planted brilliant red maple trees. Boiseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s city parks, notably Julia Davis Park and Katherine Albertson Park, were planted with many different varieties of trees. Take a stroll along the river under these lovely trees in their fall dress and watch the first fallen leaves float away on the water. Also take a drive up to McCall along the Payette River that flows beside Highway 55. Early in the season the bushes and shrubs turn bright red and contrast with the deep evergreens behind them for a stunning picture. Bright yellow aspen transform the high country into post card worthy scenes. You might even catch a big bull elk or moose meandering through them. Did I say take the camera? For more fun, pick your own bright orange pumpkin at one of the nearby pumpkin farms. At Linder Farms near Meridian, they grow 20 acres of this happy gourd! All sorts of entertainment and fun await visitors here, especially if you take your grandchildren along. Kids of all ages may get lost in a corn maze or the straw bale maze. Little ones enjoy the pony rides and petting zoo. You can all pile in for a hay ride and a whole lot more. Look for the special events listed on their website.

Also nearby is the Berry Ranch north of Nampa. Watch the back Angus cows, Rambouillet sheep, turkeys, and several exciting varieties of chickens. You can wander around the antique farm equipment, pick your own pumpkin, and then shop for fresh produce in the old dairy barn-turnedstore. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss the bees. You can safely watch this fascinating insect working behind glass in the barn/store. While you are enjoying the wide vistas of fall, your grandchildren may be carefully collecting the individual leaves. Join them and take a bouquet of branches home to brighten the house. Find a fun craft on the internet and make a creative gift for mom or teacher. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss the special sights and sounds and smells of fall. Share some old fashioned fun with a child so they can make memories that will return when they see the leaves turning in the fall. ISI

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OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 5


PAGE 6 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

I cannot express how refreshing it was to read this article by Susan Frances Bonner on Taking to the Great Outdoors: Meeting a Woman’s Unique Needs in the Outdoors. Just returning from traveling in SE Alaska for a month and a half (my 4th experience there), it’s so exhilarating actually to see printed on paper an article by a woman expressing that we do travel and experience and enjoy et al no matter what the circumstances. And please other females, DO NOT think something socially or culturally is incorrect with us because we do not have a significant other with us (as just because of our loss we do not strive to seek the experience).

I am a woman, lock, stock, and barrel, and yes, I am known to be intrepid at times – living and enjoying what nature reveals inspires my work. However, believe it as when you are out there (and for that matter anywhere) I concur. Know how to defend yourself and as Susan stated, “…you must be totally comfortable and competent with the type of protection you use.” My first line of defense? My dog, my walking stick, and my gun. Thank you for a wonderful article! Donna V. Bortfeld Harpster, Idaho

A Mind Full of Clutter By Saralee Perel Last week, instead of heading home on the highway, my husband, Bob, and I took an extra 10 minutes and drove along the scenic route. We passed gorgeous cranberry bogs, yards filled with chrysanthemums, and farm stands overflowing with pumpkins. All through the drive, I cried. Sweet Bob wanted to hear my thoughts. “I’m worried about your doctor’s appointment,” I said through tears. “I’m so sorry I spoiled our drive.” “But I want you to talk to me.” “Bob, the only purpose my worried thoughts served was to lose every precious moment of a beautiful drive with you.” At that instant, I learned that one word could change life for the better. The word? Clutter. In a single day I said to myself, “clutter,” each time I noticed a pointless negative thought. I stopped counting after about a hundred. Recently, Bob called from his cell. “I’m at the store. I’ll be home in 20 minutes.”

I thought, “What if he has an accident?” Clutter. By identifying the useless thought, I could stop it. This de-cluttering business goes way beyond the “what if?” container. The life of my cat, Eddie, was wonderful. But the second I think of him, I visualize his ending. Clutter. So I asked Bob, “What do you think of when you think of Eddie?” He laughed. “I think about Eddie-proofing the house, like keeping the toilet paper in a coffee tin.” Then he laughed harder and said, “I think about when he’d jump in my shower, and every time I’d pull him out and then close the bathroom door behind him, he’d decide it was a challenge. He’d turn the door knob, race back to the shower, use his paw to quickly slide the shower door open, and jump right back in!” Last week we went to the movies. We could not bring our dog, Becky, because of the weather. I said, “Bob, I can’t stop thinking about how unhappy Becky is right now.”

The truth is I can stop thinking about … anything. We all can. Do you see any purpose in my taking time away from enjoying the movies by focusing on leaving my pooch at home? Today, Bob and I stopped at a farm stand and bought corn. Now, I could have done what I did last time, which was to complain about the weather (clutter) and stay in the car while Bob bought the corn. Instead, I spent a wondrous five minutes with my husband, picking out corn and counting all the colors of the geraniums. That beat sitting in a car thinking about the seven calls I had to return. It was a simple uncluttered moment in time, when all I had was the feel of the corn silk, the aroma of the sweet basil, and the sight of a hummingbird on a petunia. And all that I had … was plenty. Saralee Perel is an award-winning columnist. Her new book is Cracked Nuts & Sentimental Journeys: Stories From a Life Out of Balance. She welcomes e-mails at sperel@saraleeperel.com. Her website is www.saraleeperel.com. ISI

Idaho Senior Independent A Barrett-Whitman Publication P.O. Box 3341 • Great Falls, MT 59403-3341 208-318-0310 • Toll Free: 1-866-360-5683 Fax: 406-761-8358 www.idahoseniorindependent.com E-mail: idahoseniorind@bresnan.net The Idaho Senior Independent is published six times each year in February, April, June, August, October, and December by Barrett-Whitman, 415 3rd Avenue North, Great Falls, MT 59401 and is distributed free to readers throughout the state of Idaho. The mail subscription rate is $10.00 per year (6 issues). The Idaho Senior Independent is written to serve Idaho’s mature population of all ages. Readers are encouraged to contribute interesting material. Views expressed in opinion stories, contributions, articles, and letters are not necessarily the views of the publisher. The appearance of advertisements for products or services does not constitute an endorsement of the particular product or service. The publisher will not be responsible for mistakes in advertisements unless notified within five days of publication. All copy appearing in the Idaho Senior Independent is protected by copyright and may be reprinted only with the written permission of the publisher. Advertising copy should be received or space reserved by the 5th of the month preceding the month of publication.

For Quality Products & Services, Visit The Following Advertisers Online at www.idahoseniorindependent.com! Caregiving Entertainment Gold & Silver Health

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Contributing Writers Natalie Bartley Connie Daugherty Holly Endersby Clare Hafferman Cate Huisman Gail Jokerst Bernice Karnop Craig Larcom Liz Larcom Jack McNeel Michael McGough Dianna Troyer © 2012

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Acronyms are everywhere! Some are so routine we forget they are not the actual word, and others are a bit trickier. Try this treat of a quiz submitted by Jean Carr of Twin Falls and see if you can harvest a reward! Congratulations to Jean who wins a $25 cash prize for submitting the featured quiz in this issue Congratulations also to Carol Taylor of Sagle who submitted the winning answers to the Back to School!! quiz that appeared in our August/September 2012 issue. Thank you, Carol. Two $25 cash prizes are awarded from the “Contest Corner” in each issue of the Idaho Senior Independent. One prize goes to the person who

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 7

submits the entry that our staff selects as the featured quiz or puzzle in the “Contest Corner” for that issue. Be creative and send us some good, fun, and interesting puzzles! The second $25 prize goes to the person who submits the correct answers to the featured quiz or puzzle from the previous issue. When there is a tie, the winner is determined by a drawing. Please mail your entries to the Idaho Senior Independent, P.O. Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403, or email to idahoseniorind@bresnan.net by November 10, 2012 for our December 2012/January 2013 edition. Be sure to work the crossword puzzle on our website at idahoseniorindependent.com.

Fun With Acronyms Created by Jean Carr of Twin Falls Below are 25 assorted acronyms relating to various subjects. On a numbered sheet of paper write the correct answer to each question and send it to us via mail or email. As an example, DOB is date of birth. The winner will receive a $25 cash prize. Good luck!

1. ASAP 2. FOB 3. ESP 4. WPM 5. AWOL 6. BLT 7. ATV

8. TBA 9. WPA 10. SRO 11. WAC 12. SASE 13. DOS

14. RFD 15. NCO 16. TLC 17. UFO 18. USO 19. RPM

20. APO 21. ICU 22. ATM 23. PTA 24. MVP 25. IRA ISI

Answers to Back to School Created by ISI Staff 45. Sailing ship 47. Fish bait 48. Sea-run rainbow trout 49. ___pole

Down

Across

24. Augusta’s state 1. Fish using lines dragged through 25. Beaver dam component 27. Large oceanic sport fishes the water 28. Australian mammal that 4. Spiny finned fish lives off fish and worms 7. Tuna type 10. Pull in a fish and then let it go 32. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (3 words) 34. Street, for short 12. Dot the i’s and cross the ___ 35. Legendary big fish in 13. Being situated Scotland (3 words) 15. “___ upon a time I caught a 41. Aka porgy fish this big.....” 42. ___ Lingus (Irish airline) 16. Toward the stern 43. Conger or moray 17. Fishing equipment 44. Prized catches for 19. Atlanta-based channel deepwater 21. Soft plastic bait anglers 23. Raw meat

1. Fishing equipment 2. Stabilizer for a canoe 3. Musical note 4. Fish features 5. Strips of fish 6. Chilean ____ (2 words) 8. Sun protection 9. Japanese food fish (2 words) 11. Seasonal salmon spawnings 14. Fish found off the Southern California coast 18. Russian river 20. Channel marker 22. Crest 24. Shark 26. Saw briefly 27. Worldwide ray-finned fishes 29. Yellowfins 30. Application 31. Type of bass 33. Get away 36. Have a baby whale 37. Sixth sense, for short 38. Lions DT, Dominique 39. Pitch 40. Rainbow for one 44. Fish ___, important source of omega 3 46. “... man ___ mouse?” ISI

Man blames fate for other accidents but feels personally responsible for a hole in one. - Martha Beckman

1. Simile 2. .5 or ½ 3. C. 1939 4. B. Electron 5. False 6. D. Reloj 7. D. 59 8. D. Battle of Lookout Mountain 9. Lava 10. Woodwind 11. 8 12. Frederick Douglass 13. 206 14. A. Adverb 15. Octagon ISI


PAGE 8 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” – Dr. Seuss Wonderful advice for any age and certainly for any new relationship, whether it be love or friendship. If you are looking for friendship or love, take a few minutes to look through the personal ads below. Love could lurk on one of these pages. To respond to any of these personal ads, simply forward your message, address, phone number, or email address to the department number listed in the particular personal ad, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, P.O. Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. We will forward your response, including your address, phone number, and/or email address to the person placing the ad. When you answer an ad in this section, there is no guarantee that you will receive a response. That is up to the person who placed the ad. Please be sure you submit your correct address plainly printed, so you can promptly receive responses. Respond to the ads in this issue, and also sit down now and prepare your own ad to run in our next issue. There is no charge for this service, and your ad may lead you down the path of true love! Responses to personal ads appearing in this column can be submitted at any time. However, to place a personal ad in the December/January 2012 issue, the deadline is November 10, 2012. SWM, N/S, N/D, very active, healthy, and secure, down-to-earth gentleman with a wide range of interests and ability. Seeking a lady partner who likes conservative politics, antiques, cultural events, art and nature, exploring life. Believes in personal responsibility and integrity. Want to retire in rural Boise area. Reply ISI, Dept. 8401, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWF, I love to laugh and have fun. I am not high-maintenance, but I am old fashioned, honest, and a team player with a lot of respect for others. I love to go to Rodeos and look great in jeans. I enjoy spending time in the sun and dancing, crafts, junk sales, RVing, and college football. I would even relocate for the right guy. I am looking for an extroverted senior, not ready for the rocking chair. 70+, 5’8” non-smoker, social drinker. Reply ISI, Dept. 8402, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. Retired male in S.E. Idaho, 66, looking for a cool, interesting, sweet lady, 50-75. I am 5’5”, 178 lbs, gray hair, and green eyes. I like country music, long walks, quiet romantic evenings, massage, and rides on the weekend if able. If you are that special lady, please be in touch, and we

will see if sparks fly. Reply ISI, Dept. 8403, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWF, Scandinavian decent, tall, 5’6”, slim, brown hair, brown eyes, attractive, up-beat, funloving, sense of humor, spiritual Christian. Enjoy cooking, spoiling, togetherness, walks, camping, outdoor activities, traveling, exploring new places, old ones, too. I like art, movies, reading, trying new things. I can be open and flexible in our decisions in life. Sharing the same values is important. Accepting each other’s uniqueness. Want to meet gentleman, 65-75, warm, caring, romantic, openhearted with sense of humor, secure, intelligent. I want someone to care for, respect, love, and laugh with for the rest of our lives. Time is wasting. Let’s make life exciting! Will consider relocating; where we live is not important. I’m a little bit country. No smoking or drugs. Please send photo with phone number and address. Reply ISI, Dept. 8404, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWM, 79, mentally and physically active, semi-retired, NS/ND. ISO that elusive, 60-plus spirit mate, who is not rooted to ground, her grandchildren, or job. Art/animal interests, adventurous nature desirable. Reply ISI, Dept. 8405, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. I ain’t much, baby, but I’m all I’ve got! Healthy SWM, 82, and on the go. I play table tennis and croquet. I ride my bicycle, do short hikes, and occasionally camp out. I do lots of yard work and home upgrades around here. My investments all took a nosedive. I like day trips, back roads, home BBQ’s, companionship, and a wholesome woman. I am not religious and am a non-smoker. Greenacres (Spokane Valley) is home to me. I like to LOL every day. I also can be on the quiet side and a bit of an introvert. Coffee? Tea? Glass of wine? Walk in the park? Email buddy? Reply ISI, Dept. 8406, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. 67-year-old widow, in search of male friend around my age who is non-smoker, non-drinker, non-religious and down-to-earth. I’d like someone physically active who enjoys outdoors, traveling, 60s rock and roll music, adventure, romantic or comedy movies, mountains or seashore, honest and good sense of humor. I also like to cook, garden, and quiet evenings at home. I’m 5’2”, average weight, brown hair, and blue eyes. Reply ISI, Dept. 8407, c/o Idaho Senior Independent, Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403. ISI

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The Huckleberry Murders by Patrick F McManus; Simon & Schuster 2010 The Huckleberry Murders is the most recent in Patrick McManus’s series of light mysteries set in Blight County, Idaho – the territory of sheriff, Bo Tully. The Huckleberry Murders is about flyfishing and picking huckleberries and camping in the mountains of Northern Idaho. It is about relationships – personal relationships, family relationships, and community relationships. Laced with the humor and subtle, or sometimes not-sosubtle, sarcasm that McManus is most known for, the murder and the solving of the murder is almost an aside – the vehicle to entertain and stimulate. It is typical McManus, which means well written with a voice true to the characters and an enjoyable read that leaves you thinking and chuckling long after the story is finished. A perfect book for a fall weekend. Sheriff Bo Tully is a third generation sheriff of Blight County who “tends to view the world more as a painter than as a sheriff.” He would rather be an artist – and is actually good enough to have had a few shows and sales of his work. However, the sheriff gig pays the bills while allowing him plenty of time for his artwork; besides, it’s a family tradition that he feels somehow obligated to follow. Bo is a combination of Colombo, James Bond, and Jesse Stone. He solves murders with more common sense than stealth and seldom has to draw his gun. Because he is in charge of a small, rural Idaho county with a limited budget, his office staff is also limited. The Crime Scene Investigations Unit is Byron “Lurch” who “was possibly the world’s homeliest human being… but he was brilliant.” There is Daisy, Bo’s secretary and a dependable deputy, “a woman who fairly exuded efficiency” with whom Bo had a brief “fling.” There is Flo, the “radio person,” and of course Herb, the undersheriff. Bo “figured out long ago that in any… organization there was always at least one totally useless person. Usually it was a person high up the organizational chart… this the position for which Herb was totally qualified.” In the beginning, Bo is checking out the suspected murder of a local retired rancher. Bo is positive he has the right suspect. The only problem is that he has no evidence of the crime – not even a body of the supposed murder victim. Now Bo isn’t the sort of person to go looking for crimes to solve since he would much rather be painting or fly fishing, but the supposed victim’s ex-wife has been haranguing him for weeks, and sometimes he finds himself compelled to follow a hunch. Meanwhile he heads up to his secret huckleberry patch to do take some photos for his painting file and, of course, to get some berries for his mother. “He didn’t like huckleberries all that much,” but, “they were free, and all you had to do was go out in the woods and pick them.” He also wanted to get some photos of some bushes with ripe berries for the background of a painting he was working on. “Having donned his lucky picking clothes, still stained… from many seasons, he added a khaki vest to conceal his Colt Commander. There had been a time when it never would have occurred to him to take a gun… to pick huckleberries. But this was a different world, a different time.” Bo heads for the hills in his old truck and finally reaches the road leading to his secret patch when “a faint chorus of screams reached him.” He had only walked a little way in the direction of the screams when he saw them. “There were five of them, three matronly types and two younger ones,” berry picking women who, Bo assumed had probably come upon a bear that was also intent on picking some late season berries. Only what frightened the women was not a bear – these seasoned berry-picking Idaho women could probably have handled a bear – what had them upset

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 9

were dead bodies. Three dead human bodies to be exact. Bo’s quiet, contemplative afternoon has been completely disrupted. “Weird… all three had apparently intended to pick berries when someone shot them in the back of the head… This was the worst case of coldblooded murder he had encountered in his entire career in law enforcement.” And nothing about the situation makes any sense. Who are these men? What were they doing up in the woods together? Why were they shot? Was there another intended victim, and if so where is he? Bo calls the office and orders his CSI unit to get up there, to contact Dave, an expert tracker and mediocre cook, and to contact Pap, Bo’s father

REASON

and retired sheriff who would “never forgive him if he were left out of a triple murder.” Soon, in one way or another, about half the town – at least the half who encounter Bo on a more-or-less regular basis – is involved in the investigation. Nurses, lawyers, judges, bartenders, criminals and a fortune-teller. “They’re like a strange underground family here, cop, nurse, drunk, people who see one another almost every day. It’s as if they look out for one another,” Bo observes as he sits in the hospital emergency room. It is like a microcosm of Blight County. Then, because the crime took place in a National Forest, the FBI – a pretty, young, female agent with more authority than experience – arrives.

E S TO LOV

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Bo feels it’s his civic duty to not only educate the young woman in the finer details of Blight County law enforcement techniques, but also to introduce her to the beauty of the Idaho wilderness. The investigation presents plenty of twists, turns, and more than a few dead ends and surprises

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

before Bo can finally get it all tied up and head out for a little fly-fishing. Patrick F. McManus was born in Sandpoint, Idaho. He is a renowned humorist and outdoor writer – a longtime columnist for Outdoor Life and Field & Stream – who has written dozens of

books. He has a style that has been compared to Mark Twain, Art Buchwald, and Garrison Keillor. The Huckleberry Murders is the most recent in the Sheriff Bo Tully series and a delightful reading experience. ISI

Coeur d’Alene Lake Sailors Katie Buescher and Julia Magnan Article & Photos By Jack McNeel “When we came here we wanted a sailboat,” Julia Magnan says, and three years later, she and her husband Jim bought one. Julia had been raised in the Chesapeake Bay area and loved the water. They frequently rented a small sailboat while in the Marine Corps on the east coast and later in Hawaii. “We would sail almost every weekend in various bays and around sand islands that just showed up during low tide.” With Jim retired from the Marines, Julia and he belong to the Panhandle Yacht Club, located in the northwesterly arm of Coeur d’Alene Lake. Katie Buescher and her husband

Panhandle Yacht Club on Coeur d’Alene Lake

Julia Mangan on her boat

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Carl are also active sailors at the club. The two couples’ boats are in slips on different docks but are right across from each other, stern to stern, and the women have become close friends over the years. They talk back and forth across the water and even swim back and forth between their boats. The situation with the Bueschers is a little different. “I was the sailor,” Katie says. She had learned to sail with a girl friend who bought a 24-foot Newport Neptune in 1984, before she met Carl. “My sailing experience began then and has continued since,” she adds. Julia says Jim is the main sailor in their family. “But I’m a very good deck monkey,” she laughs. “I’m doing lines. I’m jumping on and off. I’m getting the buoy. I’m doing all that stuff, and I’m very comfortable on the boat.” They also make trips to Anacortes, Washington to rent a larger boat and sail through the San Juan Islands. “A lot of weekends we aren’t here because we’re renting a boat up there. Jim loves to do that,” Julia says. It is also nice to remain on Coeur d’Alene Lake and around the Panhandle Yacht Club.

“It’s just nice to sit here. You can’t scrub a floor. You can’t feed a horse. You can’t wash a window. You just have to relax. The way we are, this is the only way we can really relax and just get away from the computer. We don’t bring a computer out here at all.” Katie is a dental assistant and had bought that 24-foot boat from her friend, but after she married Carl, whom she describes as the nicest guy in the world, in 1992, they decided to get a larger boat. “This 28-foot boat came up for sale at the perfect time, and I knew the owners,” Katie says. She found it difficult to sell the smaller boat as she had grown with it and could handle it by herself. But the 28-footer fit them better, and she now says, “It’s a lovely boat. It has teak inside, and I can also sail it by myself.” The Panhandle Yacht Club has 112 slips for

Julia and Katie (l to r) at the Panhandle Yacht Club

sailboats, and nearly all are filled. It is a quiet area, away from town and across the lake from I-90. “You can be guaranteed by 10 o’clock, if you want to go to bed, you won’t be disturbed by huge parties,” Julia says. “The only thing here that might bother you is the clicking of the halyards if they’re not tied down on a windy day.” Most of the members spend nights on their boats when they are visiting. Julia and Jim just live a few miles away in Cougar Gulch, south of Coeur d’Alene, so they normally opt to return home at night. Both are busy people. Julia loves horses and spends a lot of time with them while Jim is busy with the highway district commission and volunteering. Katie and Carl come out on Thursday nights after working the first of the week and stay until Sunday, sleeping on board their boat. “I’ve been out here a lot,” Katie says, and her tan speaks for itself. “On our vacation we spend two weeks out here,” she adds. At the Panhandle Yacht Club, Katie has served as Rear Commodore, essentially third in command, for a number of years. Monthly meetings are held to make decisions for the group, and a board meeting determines what projects need to be done that year. It might involve replacing pilings, repairing the breakwater around the boats, or something else, but “we improve something every year,” Katie says. Katie says that most of the women did not know much about sailboats when she joined the Yacht Club. She had experience from before and began urging others to learn to handle their boat should anything happen. Things like putting a sail up or taking it down, starting the engine, getting in and out from the dock. No classes were taught; it was just in talking with everybody.


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

“Then their husbands helped them,” she said. “It was immediately accepted.” The club does not hold racing regattas. “We’re cruisers, not racers,” Katie explains. “But when we get out and there are four or five boats, we’re calling, ‘Okay, I’m going to race you to Arrow Point, or the golf course!’ But they aren’t official.” They do have regular group events on such dates as Father’s Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day. There was a band here on August 4 in conjunction with Art on the Green in Coeur d’Alene. Much of the sailing time is strictly up to the individuals. “You may want to go to the Cedars Restaurant for dinner,” Julia says. “Or go down to Carlin Bay and eat. In the summer, it is very dependent on the wind as to when you are going and where you want to go. We also have something we call ‘ship, captain, and crew’. It is sort of a scavenger hunt. Everyone has a sheet, and you have to come up with the item that was hidden by the person running it.” Katie and Julia agree that sailing on Coeur d’Alene

Katie Buescher on her boat

4

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 11

Lake and the Panhandle Yacht Club are relatively inexpensive compared to other lake locations around the country, with dues running about $100 per month. Boats generally run between $15,000 and $20,000. “There are a lot of used boats out there, so you don’t have to spend $250,000 for a new boat. Some people buy them and then don’t want to continue for any number of reasons,” Julia observes. The waters here are deep, about 80 feet, so even in a severe winter, the ice does not get thick enough to do damage. Boats do not need to be pulled out and stored, so this eliminates storage fees. The club welcomes new members, and there are people willing to teach others to sail. There are some used boats for sale, and it is possible to rent a boat and slip and pay an associate fee. Just give them a call at 208-666-0771 for more information. Katie adds, “It’s affordable. It’s family oriented, and everyone helps everyone else out.” And she exclaims, “This is the most pristine, gorgeous place in the world.” ISI

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When Downsizing Is Not Enough: Many Reasons For Moving To A Retirement Residence By Lisa M. Petsche As people age, there is a good chance their home will no longer suit their lifestyle or their needs. Moving to a different house, a condo, or an apartment is not always the solution, though. In some situations, a retirement home Maintenance Free Living turns out to be the best choice. Custom Single Family Homes ‡ Gated Entry Retirement residences are private pay, wellness-oriented facilities that enable active seniors to maintain or improve their independence, health, Community Clubhouse ‡ Putting Green and overall quality of life. Convenient Location ‡ Parks & Walking Trails The following are common reasons for choosing a retirement home. 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swimming pool and hot tub, well–stocked library, beauty salon and spa, café, Internet lounge, in–house theater, convenience store, greenhouse, putting green, and more. Retirement homes vary considerably in terms of price, size, amenities, and services, which can make it difficult to choose. If you are in the market for one, carefully consider your financial situation and preferred lifestyle to determine which places to focus on. When making a choice, it is important to go beyond location, curb appeal,

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 13

and advertisements and take personal tours. Plan to visit several places, and bring a notebook and pen, so you can take notes. Also, bring along a friend for a second opinion. Many residences offer a complimentary lunch or dinner – take them up on it. Before making a final decision, you may wish to consider a trial stay at the place that appeals the most to you. Lisa M. Petsche is a social worker and a freelance writer specializing in boomer and senior issues. ISI

Simplified Computer Software That Can Help You Get Online Do you know of any computer software that is easy to use that I can download on an old computer that I have? I would like to set my grandmother up with a system for email and Internet access, but I do not want to spend a lot of money. Cheap and Easy Dear Cheap, There are actually a number of companies and services today that offer simplified computer software designed specifically for people who have little or no computer experience. These software packages can transform most Microsoft Windows personal computers (PCs) – some work with Macs and tablets too – into a much simpler computer experience that provides easy access to most functions, like sending and receiving email, browsing the Internet, making video calls, looking at photos, playing games, and more. Here are some top options to check out. Free Software – Since it is completely free, a good place to start is at Eldy, an Italian nonprofit organization that provides simplified computer software in 25 different languages, including English. Available to download at www.eldy.eu, this software works on PCs that use Windows and Linux systems, Macs, and Android tablets. Once installed, Eldy converts the computer’s desktop into a simple six-button menu that has large text, color contrast, and simplified instruc-

tions (no confusing icons) that makes it easy to see, understand, and operate. The six-button menu puts the user literally one-click-of-the-mouse away from simplified versions of email, the Web, Skype for video calls, chat groups, a simple word processing program, and more. It is also worth noting that Eldy software works on touch-screen computers, too, and they offer online tech-support. Fee-Based Services – If, however, you do not mind spending a little money, there are also a number of companies that offer software similar to Eldy, but provide a few extra enticing features. One of the best deals is offered through SeeYouLink (seeyoulink.com), which has a three-month free trial and charges only $4.95 per month after that. SeeYouLink’s web-based software will transform any mouse-operated or touch-screen Windows-based PC, into a simplified big-button operating system with large fonts and color contrasts. This will give anyone easy access to a host of functions that she can select from, like email, Web browsing, video calling, brain-fitness games, movies, Facebook, a calendar that sends reminders, and much more. This service also provides a “remote access” feature that will give you and other family members the ability to access your grandmother’s computer system from literally any computer anywhere in the world, so you can help her set

things up, show her websites, schedule appointments, or guide her through any other questions or problems she might have. And, when you or your grandmother needs help, SeeYouLink offers free tech support, both online and over the phone. In addition to SeeYouLink, some other companies worth looking at, which offer similar services, include InTouchLink (intouchlink.com), which can be used on a PC, Mac, or iPad and costs $13.75 per month or $150 per year. Another company, Pointer Ware (pointerware.com), works on Windows PCs and costs a one-time fee of $149, or you can subscribe monthly for $8 per month. BigScreenLive (bigscreenlive.com) also operates on Windows PCs and runs $9.95 per month for an annual membership. User-Friendly Computers – If you find that you would rather purchase your grandmother a new computer that is designed for seniors and is ready to go right out of the box, you have options here too. Two of the most popular are the Telikin (telikin.com, 800-230-3881), which costs between $699 and $999 – this same computer is sold as the “WOW” computer through firstSTREET – and MyGait (mygait.com, 866-469-4248), which runs $799 or $899, plus a $20 monthly service fee. Send your senior questions to Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior book. ISI

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OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

Skip Critell Finds Calling In Lincoln Living History Talks By Dianna Troyer/Photo by Skip Critell Slender, tall, and bearded, Skip Critell was told so often he resembled Abraham Lincoln that he decided to become a Lincoln presenter. “Friends talked me into it, so I’ve been doing living history presentations since 1999,” says the 56-year-old Boise resident who started a corporation and a website, www.lincolnremembered.org. He also joined the Association of Lincoln Presenters, a non-profit organization with more than 150 members dedicated to entertaining, inspiring, and educating audiences about Abe and Mary Lincoln. Members meet at national conventions to learn about the 16th president’s life. When Skip is not running his business, Assisting Angels Home Care, with his wife, he researches the Civil War and Lincoln’s life to prepare himself for questions that arise during presentations. “I’ve been in two PBS films, participated in Museum Comes to Life here in Boise, and have given presentations at schools, colleges, churches, museums, and events organized by the Idaho Civil War Volunteers.” Skip will become Lincoln at the volunteers’

Civil War Camp at Emmett Sports Complex Island on October 6 and 7. The camp is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free. Skip gives about 75 presentations a year and expects to be busy this fall with heightened public awareness about the renowned president due to Steven Spielberg’s film, Lincoln, a biographical drama scheduled for release in November. Lincoln, who served as president from 1861 to 1865, lost more elections than he won and faced tremendous adversity in his life. To encourage his audiences about confronting difficulties, Skip often shares a couple of Lincoln’s favorite quotes. “Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” “I will prepare, and some day my chance will come.” “Whatever you are, be a good one.” Despite his iconic somber photos, Lincoln had a sense of humor and enjoyed festivities. “He’s the president who made Thanksgiving a national holiday,” says Skip. Lincoln once said, “If I were two-faced, would I be wearing this one?” When Lincoln was asked how long a man’s legs should be, he replied, “Long enough to touch the ground.” “Lincoln reminded people to be down-toearth, grounded, and not to have their head in the clouds,” says Skip. Lincoln also valued education. “Even though he had less than one year of formal schooling, he was able to learn geometry and become a surveyor, a job he did to pay off debt on the New Salem store,” says Skip. From the hundreds of presentations Skip has given during the past 13 years, a few stand out. “I gave a presentation at the Boise Language Arts Academy to international students who were studying English as a second language,” says Skip. “There were students from 22 countries, and all of them knew who Abraham Lincoln was.” A few years ago, after attending a Lincoln Presenters convention, Skip visited Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C. and was asked spontaneously to present Lincoln’s life. “I was dressed casually in cowboy boots, jeans, and a Wrangler shirt, and the rangers in the theater asked if I’d answer some questions

d h were there.” h ” from students who Students asked whether Lincoln and his wife, Mary Todd, fought often and if Mary suffered from mental illness. “I reminded them of the tragedies she had in life and asked how they would feel if they were she. She had so many people in her life die – three sons and three brothers – plus her family disowned her because she married a dirt farmer who dreamed of becoming a lawyer one day.” Skip says it’s ironic that he gives Lincoln presentations, considering he was raised in the South. “I grew up in Tennessee and South Carolina and visited many battlefields including Shiloh, Stone’s River, and Fort Sumter. As a child I always thought of Jeff Davis as my president and Abe Lincoln as the bad guy, until I learned more about him,” says Skip, who moved to Idaho when his dad retired to Mountain Home Air Force Base. Skip is still learning about Lincoln’s life during his travels and at national conventions. “It seems new information about his life is always being gleaned.” ISI


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 15

Farmer, Spinner, Nurse Weaves Fiber Arts Into Her Life By Dianna Troyer moved on to other techniques, but I’ve been content doing this.” In her spare time, not that there was ever much of it with two nursing Ava raised Katahdin sheep and angora goats, so she could weave and jobs and raising sheep and goats, Ava Lutteman, 79, always turned to fiber make clothing. “I’ve done the whole process from shearing them, to cleaning arts for relaxation. and washing the fleece to dying, spinning, and weaving the wool. After all “Spinning and weaving are so varied that everyone can find their niche,” these years, I finally realized it was easier to buy the wool already in yarn,” says Ava, who helped start the Handweavers Guild of Boise Valley in 1972 she says, laughing. when she had time off from working as a hospital registered nurse by day Her son, Tim Sommer, followed in her footsteps and raises goats and and as a public health nurse on some sheep nearby at Purple Sage Farms, weekends and evenings. where he also grows organic greens “We started off with a handful of memand herbs. bers, and now we have about 50 people “I get his culls in the spring and coming to our monthly meetings,” says have about eight here until fall when the Middleton resident. “I’ve learned so they’re sold for market,” she says. “Apmuch there.” parently, I’m the nurse mom because Ava is eager to share her expertise I bottle-feed them.” and years of experience, says Amy OleAfter she finishes caring for the nik, who works at Puffy Mondaes, a fiber culls, Ava keeps the loom in her living arts store in Nampa. room busy. “I make at least one rug a “Ava has a great sense of humor and a month, spending a couple of hours a personality-and-a-half,” says Amy. “She’s day. Making the rugs helped me pass full of information. She’s not set in her the time while I was recovering from ways at all and is eager to learn and take hip surgeries this past year.” different classes here at the store. She has The rugs are easy to make, Ava an amazing level of energy, considering says. “I used to buy cheap sheets, then all the different things she does. She’s not cut them into 1 ¼-inch wide strips, sew shy about sharing her work.” the strips together, then roll them into After retiring from nursing last year, balls for weaving. My family never has deciding “that’s finally enough of full-time Ava Lutteman, 79, a founding member of the Handweavers Guild of Boise Valley, to guess what I’ll give them for Christwork for me,” Ava says she has more makes rag rugs on her loom. [Photo by Tom Sommer] mas,” she says, laughing. spare time now to devote to her niche – The weavers meet at 11:30 a.m. weaving 34-inch-wide by 5.5-foot-long rag rugs on her loom. the first Saturday of the month at the Adelmann House at the Idaho Historical “The woven rag rugs are making a comeback. I’ve always liked making Museum to learn techniques, share tips, and show current projects. More them to give away to friends and family. Others who started the guild have information is at the guild’s website at www.handweavers-guild-boise.org. ISI

Friends’ Fledgling Dart League Takes Flight By Dianna Troyer Blind in his left eye since birth, Phil Jenkins says the loss of sight in that eye is his gain in darts. “I joke that unlike most people, I don’t have to remember to close one eye when I throw,” says Phil, 61, who along with his friend and business partner David Grainger, 48, has persuaded hundreds of people in the Treasure Valley to throw darts competitively and to join a league. Phil started throwing darts 25 years ago because the sport did not require much depth perception. “With darts, you’re only 8 feet from the board, so depth perception isn’t that important,” says Phil.

a need to socialize and compete. There’s a great camaraderie among players, too. No one cares about a person’s age, skill level, or career. Over the years, I have seen doctors playing next to bikers, and everyone gets along like a big family.” Phil and David collaborated with Bumpers Inc. in Spokane to bring the Titan Darts League to the Boise area. “We were at a tournament in Post Falls, and it was so well run. We asked them to start a league and bring some boards to the Boise area,” says Phil. “They told us we were too far away for them to service the boards and that we should do it because players usually make good business owners and know what people like. We just happened to be in the right place at the right time to start the business.” The boards are relatively maintenance-free because they are computerized and digitally keep track of people’s scores. After starting their business, the partners did not quit their day jobs. Phil still works for Tates Tents & Events, setting up large events with tents, tables, and chairs, while David is a facilities technician at Micron. “We’ll never get rich doing this, but we have wealth with the people we’ve met and the laughs we’ve had throwing darts with our friends and family,” says Phil, who plays three to four nights a week. When Phil’s children were growing up, he hung dartboards in their garage. “When we would turn on a ball game, instead of just sitting around on the

couch watching the game, we’d be throwing darts.” The sport appeals to families because it is easy for people of all ages to play. “We have five different skill levels from novice to master, so anyone can compete at whatever their level is and have fun,” says Phil. David laughs about an epiphany he had recently about coaching others. “I’ve been playing league darts about 15 years, so I used to offer some tips and advice,” says David.

Phil Jenkins has been throwing darts for about 25 years and started leagues throughout the Treasure Valley with his business partner David Grainger. [Photo courtesy of Phil Jenkins]

“I remember trying to play softball, standing there in the outfield ready to catch a fly ball, when it would land 30 feet behind me.” Phil and David’s hobby has led them on an unexpected business adventure. Five years ago when they started Boise Darts, they had 12 dartboards in two locations for 42 teams. Now they service 45 boards for 135 teams in 14 locations throughout the Treasure Valley, including Boise, Kuna, Caldwell, Meridian, and Nyssa. “We have more than 200 active league members and are amazed at how popular Boise Darts has become,” says Phil. “We never expected it to take off this fast. People like it because it satisfies

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“I finally realized that if someone wants advice, they’ll ask me. Otherwise, I keep my mouth shut and let people play their game.” Darts is a sport enjoyed by people around the world. “At tournaments in Las Vegas, we didn’t always have interpreters, so we’d have to use hand signals at the start of a match. We’d flip a coin to see who goes first and pat our head if we called heads instead of tails,” says Phil, who placed fourth in level two in 2008. There are 19 levels at international contests. Boise Darts offers contests, including a tournament coming up on Jan. 4, 5, and 6. “We’ll have

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$25,000 to pay out in various prizes,” says Phil. Besides tournaments, throughout the year Phil and David plan barbecues and potlucks for league players, some as large groups and some as smaller groups. “People who play darts are like one big family,” says Phil.

Phil and David are optimistic about the future of darts in the area. “We’d like to get some junior leagues going for kids and one day to hope to bring Boise Darts to Southeastern Idaho,” says Phil. Information about the league may be found at www.boisedarts.com. ISI

Ron Dunagan Is Hooked on Brittany Breed and Field Trials By Dianna Troyer active in the Idaho Brittany Club. For Ron Dunagan, Ringer was his once-in-aThe club’s 40 members host spring and fall field lifetime dog, perfection on paws. Thirty years ago, trials and hunt trials that attract gun-dog owners the Brittany got his owner hooked on bird hunting from Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Montana, and led him to the hunt test and field trial circuit, Wyoming, and Nebraska. where he has made lifelong friendships. “With a hunt test, competitors are on foot, while “My former wife saw an ad in the paper for at a field trial you’re generally on horseback. No Brittany pups and talked me and my work partner matter what the contest, competitors have a sense into each getting one,” says Ron, 65, a retired of camaraderie. We get a friendly cross-section of paramedic who lives people from all walks of in Boise. “He was an life.” amazing dog.” At field trials and On a whim, Ron hunt tests, Ron says entered Ringer in a dogs have a sense of picnic field trial, a prachumor that is sometice contest offered to times confounding. introduce newcomers “You train and train to how a field trial is them, and they’re doing run. Dogs are judged great, then you get to on how well they find an event, and they look birds and follow their at you like, ‘You expect owner’s commands. me to do that? Now? “Pretty soon, I was Are you kidding me?’” hooked on this sport. I A variety of dog loved the partnership breeds come to the triRon waters Jackson, Hunter, and Doc. [Photo courtesy with the dog, watching of Ron Dunagan] als, including German him work, and camawirehaired pointers, raderie with other dog German shorthaired owners,” says Ron, who joined the Idaho Brittany pointers, setters, and English pointers, but to the Club, where he serves as first vice president of field Brittany owners, there is no other breed to own. events, second vice president of social events, and “They’re smart, versatile and have a wonderful is in charge of rescue. He also judges contests. disposition,” says club secretary Sharon Millspaugh Ringer relished the contests as much as Ron, of the dogs that weigh 35 to 40 pounds and stand winning ribbons throughout the Northwest and as about 20 inches high. far as New Mexico, Texas, and Georgia. “This breed has more dual champions in shows “When we were done, he was a Show Cham- as well as in field trials than any other sporting pion, Field Champion, Amateur breed,” says Sharon, who owns 11-year-old Cody. Field Champion, and a Master “Besides the trials, I’ve done obedience and show Hunter, one of the first in Idaho to competitions with mine. They’re good family dogs. have that title. His full title was DC/ They have energy to hunt with you in the field, then AFC French’s Bell Ringer MH.” come home and curl up on the couch and are calm.” Ron laughs about how he picked With autumn bird season, Ron hunts chukars Ringer’s name. “When he was a and Hungarian partridges throughout Idaho and puppy, he whined and had a hard Eastern Oregon. time sleeping at night. I happened “My oldest dog, Jackson, is 13 and doesn’t to have a bag of lactated Ringer know he’s old,” says Ron. “I put a Garmin on him, solution used for giving IVs, so I so I know his location, and he covers more ground warmed it up in the microwave and than my younger dog, Hunter, who is 8. Jackson put it next to him. He curled right doesn’t know he shouldn’t be able to outrun a up to it and fell asleep.” younger dog. They’re both energetic like me.” When Ringer was 15, he passed More information about the club and breed may on, leaving Ron devoted to a ver- be found at www.idahobrittany.org. ISI satile breed of hunting dog and

Notes To God From The Dog Submitted by Julie Hollar-Brantley Dear God, Why do humans smell the flowers, but seldom, if ever, smell one another? Dear God, When we get to heaven, can we sit on your couch? Or is it still the same old story? Dear God, Why are there cars named after the jaguar, the cougar, the mustang, the colt, the stingray, and the rabbit, but not one named for a Dog? How often do you see a cougar riding around? We do love a nice ride! Would it be so hard to rename the Chrysler Eagle the Chrysler Beagle? Dear God, If a Dog barks his head off in the forest and no human hears him, is he still a bad Dog? Dear God, We Dogs can understand human verbal instructions, hand signals, whistles, horns, clickers, beepers, scent ID’s, electromagnetic energy fields, and Frisbee flight paths. What do humans understand? Dear God, More meatballs, less spaghetti, please. ISI

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IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 17

Historical Trivia or Just Fiction? Submitted by Dan Hubbard Over time, it has become more difficult to ascertain the origins of many expressions or customs that have been passed down from earlier generations and whether or not they are true. Here are a few that may surprise you. It is up to you, dear reader, to determine the validity of these historical (hysterical?) “truths.” • Did you know the saying “God willing and the Creeks don’t rise” was in reference to Creek Indians attacking, and not a body of water? It was written in the late 18th century by Benjamin Hawkins, a politician and Indian diplomat. While in the South, the President ordered Hawkins to return to Washington. In his response, Hawkins wrote that he would comply and added, “God willing and the Creeks don’t rise.” Because he capitalized Creeks, it is believed that he was referring to the Creek tribe, and not a body of water. • In George Washington’s days, since there were no cameras, one’s image was either sculpted or painted. Some paintings of George Washington showed him standing behind a desk with one arm behind his back, while others showed both legs and both arms. Painters charged prices not based on how many people they painted, but by how many limbs they painted. Therefore, painting arms and legs would cost the buyer more, hence the expression, “It will cost you an arm and a leg.” • As incredible as it sounds, before the mid-1800s, personal hygiene was not a priority in one’s daily routine. Often, men and women bathed only twice a year, in May and October. Because of lice and bugs, women kept their hair covered, while men shaved their heads and wore wigs. Wealthy men could afford good wigs made from wool. They couldn’t wash the wigs, so to clean them, they would carve out a loaf of bread, put the wig in the bread shell, and bake it for 30 minutes. The heat and moisture would make the wig big and fluffy, hence the term “big wig” to describe someone who appears to be powerful and wealthy. • Since personal hygiene left much room for improvement, many women and men had developed acne scars by adulthood. The women would spread

Sisters rehabilitate -

bee’s wax over their facial skin to smooth out their complexions. When they were speaking to each other, if a woman began to stare at another woman’s face, she was told, “mind your own bee’s wax.” Should the woman smile, the wax would crack, hence the term “crack a smile.” In addition, when they sat too close to the fire, the wax would melt; therefore, came the expression “losing face.” • In the late 1700s, many houses consisted of a large room with only one chair. Commonly, a long, wide board folded down from the wall and was used for dining. The head of the household always sat in the chair while everyone else ate sitting on the floor. Occasionally, a guest, who was usually a man, would be invited to sit in this chair during a meal. To sit in the chair meant you were important and in charge. They called the one sitting in the chair the “chair man” from which today’s expression “chairman” or “chairman of the board” is derived. • In the days of corsets, which fastened with cords wound through hooks and eyelets, a proper and dignified woman wore a tightly tied lace. She was “straight-laced.” • Common entertainment included playing cards. However, a tax was levied on the purchase of playing cards, but it was only applicable to the ace of spades. To avoid paying the tax, people would purchase 51 cards instead. Yet, since most games require 52 cards, these people were thought to be stupid or dumb because they weren’t “playing with a full deck.” • Early politicians required feedback from the public to determine what the people considered important. Since there were no telephones, TVs or radios, the politicians sent their assistants to local taverns, pubs, and bars. They were told to “go sip” some ale and listen to people’s conversations and political concerns. Many assistants were dispatched at different times. “You go sip here” and “You go sip there.” The two words “go sip” were eventually combined when a person referred to the local opinion, and thus we have the term “gossip.” ISI

continued from page 1

“We’re blessed and fortunate to be able to care for these animals for a short while until they’re ready to be sent back into the wild,” says Mady. “We share the planet with them. If not for us, who would do it?” Mady, president of AIDA, says, “Caring for animals is in our blood. Our mother, Olga Rothchild, was one of the founders of the Idaho Humane Society in 1938. We laugh when friends ask us what’s new in our lives because there’s never much new except another animal in need.” Caring for the animals is a 24-7 job with each species requiring a different diet. “All infant mammals are fed milk, which is formulated for that particular species. As animals continue to grow, they are introduced to as much of their natural diet that we can make available. Some carnivores are fed dry dog or cat food for a well-rounded nutritional supplement,” says Toni. By early autumn, the animals that came into their lives this summer were ready to be released back into the wild. The sisters list the mammals they have handled this year to date: • 40 orphaned raccoons and 22 adults • 16 yellow-bellied marmots • 6 orphaned coyotes and 1 adult • 3 orphaned long tailed weasels • 22 bats • 23 orphaned cottontail rabbits and 4 adults • 7 beavers • 1 mink • 4 badgers • 5 turtles • 103 orphaned tree squirrels and 25 adults • 1 bobcat (unreleasable) • 5 mule deer fawns • 1 antelope fawn • 1 elk calf • 2 Townsend ground squirrels • 17 fox kits and 5 adults • 3 gophers • 8 orphaned skunks and 3 adults. “We pick an appropriate area outside of the city for the particular animal,” says Toni. “We’ve gone as far as Coeur d’Alene and as close as Idaho City.” The wild animals that temporarily come into their lives are referred to them by the Idaho Humane Society, local law enforcement officers,

and veterinarians. tween wildlife and people,” says Mady. “We’re serving a valley with about 350,000 In the spring and summer, the sisters are people, so there’s bound to be some clash be- busy with baby animals, while in autumn they

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Idaho eye doctors help legally blind to see Local low vision doctor helps those with vision impairment to keep reading and driving. By Elena Lomabardi retired rancher from Utah, approached the Low Just because you have macular degeneration Vision Clinic last February. (or other vision-limiting conditions) doesn’t always “I could not read the street signs soon enough mean you must give up driving or reading. when driving, and I couldn’t read my morning Ever look through a pair of field glasses or paper.” binoculars? Things look bigger He was fit with bioptic teleand closer, and much easier scope glasses. “Amazing,” says to see. Dr. Jared L. Cooper Ross, “to be able to see things of Southern Idaho/Utah and far away again. Even the televiDr. Cheryl Dumont of Coeur sion is so much better now.” He d’Alene are using miniaturized was also provided with a Clear binoculars or telescopes to help Image Microscope glasses for people who have lost vision from reading the newspaper. macular degeneration or other “Telescopic glasses usually eye conditions. cost over $2000,” says Dr. Coo“Some of my patients conper, “especially if we fabricate sider me the last stop for people who have vision them with an automatic sunglass.” loss”, says Dr. Cooper, a low vision optometrist who Not all low vision devices are that expensive limits his practice to visually impaired patients in - reading glasses start at $500 and hand magnihis offices throughout Southern Idaho. fiers under $100. Every case is different because “People don’t know that there are doctors who people have different levels of vision and different are very experienced in low vision care, many of desires. my patients have been told that there was nothCall Dr. Cooper or Dr. Dumont for a free ing left that they could do to improve their vision, telephone interview at 800-451-2015 or visit Dr. fortunately this is usually not the case.” Cooper on the Internet at www.drjaredcooper.com. “My job is to figure out everything and anything Dr. Jared L. Cooper Idaho License #ODPpossible to keep a person functioning.” said Dr. 100238. Cooper. “Even if it’s driving”. A patient of Dr. Cooper, Ross Johnson, 73 a


PAGE 18 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

see more injured adults. In 1997, AIDA members opened their first avian facility, the Ruth Melichar Bird Center; naming it after a longtime bird rehabilitator. “I can remember taking songbirds to Ruth for rehabilitation when we were children,” says Mady. The staff at the center works 12 hours a day, seven days a week during the busy season. “Infant birds need to be fed every 15 minutes from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.,” says Mady. “Most people don’t

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

realize how time-consuming it is. We care for about 3,000 songbirds and waterfowl annually.” Staffing the bird center and paying for specialized formulas and foods for birds as well as mammals is an expensive endeavor, one funded through grants, donations, and fund-raising events. The association is a registered 501(c) (3) corporation, so donations are tax deductible. “We don’t receive any city, county, state, or federal funding,” says Mady. “Every fall, we hope our grants continue coming through. Volunteers are always needed, too.” To raise money, they rely on their organizational skills from their former jobs. Before retir-

ing, Mady was a media buyer in the advertising industry, living in San Francisco and Virginia. Toni worked as a legal secretary in San Francisco and Boise. The sisters’ next goal is to build a mammal center. “There’s such a need for it,” says Mady. “Caring for these animals is our calling, one that we’d love to share,” says Toni. “Some days, we’re ready for someone else to answer the calls, so we can press the pause button for a while,” she says, laughing. More information about their efforts can be found at www.idahowildliferescue.org or by calling 208-367-1026. ISI

It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom. It is healthy to be remined that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err. - Mahatma Gandhi


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 19

Annette Orton – Teacher, Runner, Pilot Article & Photo By Jack McNeel Annette Orton’s life after retirement could be the subject of a book, or perhaps a movie! Adjectives like amazing, phenomenal, and astonishing all apply, yet she considers it routine and speaks in a casual tone that belies the unusual. Annette was born in California, but when she was seven, her dad died, and she moved to a dairy farm in Vermont. After high school, she attended UCLA on a scholarship then taught science and math in California, until her retirement in 1991. Life until this point had been normal, but things were soon to change. Immediately after retirement, Annette began running in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle and ran in races at distances from 5K to marathons. “All told, I’ve done about 80 of them,” she says, “but I found I’m not really built like a runner.” The next change was to move away from California. Her husband suggested checking out Oregon, Washington, and Idaho. “When we got to Idaho I said, ‘This is it!’ We lived along the Pend Oreille River about eight miles out of Sandpoint.” Annette still did not really enjoy running but had been hearing about triathlons. “I wondered if I could I do a triathlon. The summer I was 66, I had trained all the previous winter in the swimming pool at the athletic club.” Annette learned new swimming strokes, and that summer, she did the Long Bridge twomile swim from Sagle to Sandpoint. “Then I did my first triathlon in, of all places, Denver, the mile-high city. I was a little short of breath but finished okay,” she explains. “I’ve done 31 triathlons since then. I’m always the oldest, and I always finish. The last one was just two weeks ago.” Annette competes in sprint triathlons, where competitors swim either 1/3 or 1/2 mile, bike 12 miles, and finish with a 3-mile run. She has competed in Seattle, Helena, Liberty Lake, and Sandpoint as well as Denver. “At one point I was the female northwest champion in off-road biking for my age group. I was the only one in my age group in the whole U.S.,” she says with a laugh. But running was not Annette’s only interest. Right after WW II, she took a Civil Air Patrol class that taught meteorology, navigation, Morse code, and other aviation subjects. “I totally enjoyed it. I was nuts about it,” Annette recalls.

That love of airplanes and flying was subdued for many years, but then she went for a ride in an old biplane with an open cockpit. She loved it! At the time, however, she thought that was the end of flying. Then, a few years later after she moved to Idaho, another neighbor and former Air Force pilot asked if she’d like to ride in a glider, and this time she was encouraged to take the controls. “Use the rudder. Use the stick. Go left or go right or watch this or that,” she recalls with a laugh. “He made me work, and I didn’t know anything.” Now there was no turning back. She went to ground school in Bonners Ferry. “I just ate it up and totally loved the whole thing.” At the same time, Annette started flying lessons and decided she would go all the way and finish with a pilot’s license. “Before I finished, an airplane became available,” she said. “I hadn’t saved any money for an airplane. I never dreamed of having an airplane. I took a loan on my car, then put the rest on my charge card and paid it off as fast as I could. It was

a high-winged Cessna 150.” At the age of 77, Annette soloed, which was a big change. Now she could fly alone and for greater distances as approved by her instructor. “You have some freedom. You’re flying alone and building experience. I passed the check ride, which is the final exam for the license. That was the summer of 2009!” In the meantime, she sold the Cessna and bought a Cherokee 140. “I souped it up with a power flow exhaust to make the exhaust more efficient, so it’s now 170 hp. It flies faster, and I can carry two or three passengers, although I prefer not to carry more than


PAGE 20 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

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one other adult at a time. That’s really nice because when they pay half the gas, I can do twice as much flying.” A year ago, on her 80th birthday, Annette flew to Napa Valley to visit her two children. “It was a delightful trip, and they met me right at the ramp with the car and loaded the baggage.” That flight, at age 80, qualifies a person as a United Flying Octogenarian (UFO) of which there are only about 1,000 members worldwide. “We have meetings throughout the U.S. It’s enjoyable to go see other active people who are flying their own planes. Many were military pilots and just continue with flying.” She is also a member of the Ninety-Nines, the first and only international organization for women pilots. Amelia Earhart was its first president with members from 35 countries. Fly-in breakfasts are high on Annette’s agenda, and she frequently takes someone else with her. “Two weeks ago, I flew to the St. Maries breakfast. Last week it was up to Bonners Ferry. This

weekend will be Colville, and in two weeks, I fly to Republic, Washington. It’s really, really fun,” she exclaims. Annette’s advice to others is simply to stay healthy, both mentally and physically, so you can enjoy life. “Sudoku is a form of mental exercise. And I’m always trying to review French as much as possible. I started when I was 14 and keep going back to it because it keeps me mentally alert. I enjoy being physically and mentally active. I want to feel good as long as I’m alive. I realize I have to move, to keep moving. I go to the athletic club and do water

aerobics three times a week and work out on the machines. I don’t do as much as I should, but I find that when I sign up for a race, it makes me train for it. “Whenever the Lord wants to take me, okay, but I want to keep myself feeling good as long as I can.” ISI

From Tracker to Teacher: Brian Baxter’s Students Learn to See in the Woods Article & Photo By Cate Huisman Brian Baxter does not seem like a guy born in New York City, and although he was, he didn’t live there long. His family moved across the Hudson River to a housing development backed by 40 acres of woods. That forestland was his true home. “I always felt very comfortable in the woods,” says Baxter. “My family was kinda worried about me because I was a little wild.” Half a century later, Baxter seems to have remained a little wild. He appears most comfortable out of doors, and he has made a life and living surveying the trees and studying the wildlife that traverses the far northern ranges of the continent. His youthful fondness for all things sylvan led naturally to a study of forestry technology in college, which left him with a degree and skills he could use for gainful employment in his preferred environment. Then he realized he was as interested in the animals that roamed the forests as he was in the forests themselves, so he continued his schooling to get a wildlife management degree from Western Carolina University. Postgraduate wanderings brought Baxter to Moscow in 1976, where he got a job on a land survey crew. His foreman’s tales of Northwest Montana led him to want to visit that area, and two

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years later, he was working on a stand inventory crew with the Kootenai National Forest. Thus began a career that has ranged across the ridges and valleys of the Montana-Idaho border, with the occasional foray beyond into eastern Washington or southeast British Columbia. With his combination of degrees, Baxter found that he had options for various kinds of work that could keep him afloat until the right wildlife project came along. So he surveyed and inventoried for the Forest Service and cruised timber for Plum Creek Timber Company, and when the chance arose, he became involved with tracking and studying mid-size forest carnivores – wolverine, fisher, marten, and lynx. Over 15 years pursuing such animals, Baxter became an expert at tracking, live trapping, and radio collaring the elusive wolverine and lynx, and eventually decided to start his own company, Silver Cloud Associates, to contract for such studies. It was neither an easy nor a common area in which to set up a business, but the timing was right. The U.S. Forest Service wanted to do timber cuts on the Kootenai and Kaniksu national forests, and conservation groups were questioning what the effects of these cuts would be on resident flora and fauna. As Baxter says, “Everyone knew that the timber dollar supported wildlife projects,” so there was money for research. Wild animal surveys involve a variety of activities, from counting the number of animal dens in an area to setting up live traps, so the quarry can be tranquilized and fitted with radio tracking collars. Baxter’s tracking skills enabled him to identify where his prey were and where best to place his “sets” – the combination of bait, camouflage, and trap that attracts and holds an animal. Animals were never happy to end up

in Baxter’s traps, and he thinks of wolverine, in particular, as being notoriously feisty when captured. In fact, they’re “terrorizing,” he says. When a wolverine is in a trap, “it’s nothing but saliva and claws and guttural sounds coming out of there.” Although there was no way the animals could know that Baxter intended no harm, he was able to develop ways of behaving around them that could sometimes calm them down. As timber harvests and funding for research dwindled precipitously in 2000, Baxter went back to surveying, but this work also petered out when the economy crashed in 2008. His colleagues suggested he ought to teach, given his unique and extensive experience tracking, observing, and even approaching and interacting with the denizens of the northern forests. He resisted the idea at first. “I’m not comfortable in public,” he says, “I’m a loner dude.” But after he published an article about tracking lynx lynx, the Glacier Institute in Glacier National Park asked him to teach a class, and he decided to try it. He’s been teaching now for over a decade, for college classes and conservation groups as well as the Glacier Institute, on both sides of the Idaho/ Montana border. He remembers that at first, his approach was “way too scientific” and his coach from the institute noted, “You’re kinda nervous. Keep the stories; that’s one of the better parts.” Baxter has lots of stories: In addition to being threatened by a wolverine, he’s been treed by a bear, has fallen through

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ice, has been stalked by wolves, and has suffered disorienting heat exhaustion when he was miles from his truck, which was itself miles from the nearest town. The stories are good for teaching, since it was through these experiences that he developed the skills of observation that his students seek. Baxter’s classes start with an orientation in a classroom, where he can account for the weather and the season and give students an idea of what to look for and what they might experience when they move outside. He animates charts and pictures with stories, and his teaching style engages all the senses: he can imitate an owl call or a wolverine utterance, and he can move across a room like a lynx, demonstrating how its stooped appearance differentiates it from a bobcat. He loves watching the transformation that occurs as his students go through a daylong class. “People tune into their own powers of observation, and they practice what we taught in the class-

room,” he says. They are amazed at what they become aware of. “We have more in common with animals than we may realize,” says Baxter. When his students recognize these commonalities, it helps them see the signs of animals all around them. “It’s like they have a whole different set of eyes.” This fall, Baxter will be teaching a daylong class in riparian and wetland ecology through the Sandpoint Branch of North Idaho College. In the winter, he will offer animal tracking classes both through the college and through the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness. You can also arrange with him to design a custom class for your group, ranging from a daylong off-trail hike to a bus tour with short walks to easily accessible wildlife areas. Email b_baxter53@yahoo.com or call 406-293-6500 (Silver Cloud Associates) for more information, questions, scheduling, custom program design, or to sign up for programs. ISI

Notes To God From The Dog Submitted by Julie Hollar-Brantley Dear God, So you know I am trying to learn, here is a list of some of the things I must remember to be a good Dog. 1. I will not eat the cats’ food before they eat it or after they throw it up. 2. I will not roll on dead seagulls, fish, crabs, etc., just because I like the way they smell. BUYING and SELLING 3. The litter box is not a cookie jar. Coins & Paper Money - US & Worldwide 4. The sofa is not a Gold t Silver t Bullion face towel. Coin Collecting Books & Supplies 5. The garbage collector is not stealing our Metal Detectors t Prospecting Supplies stuff. We now carry food storage supplies 6. I will not play tugof-war with Dad’s un10-5 Mon - Fri or Call for an Appointment derwear when he is on 210-C Triangle Dr. ‡ Ponderay 263-7871 (Behind Pampurrred Pet Store) the toilet. 609426S-0815 7. Sticking my nose into someone’s crotch is an unacceptable way of saying hello. 8. I don’t need to suddenly stand straight up when I’m under the coffee table. 9. I must shake the rainwater out of my fur before entering the house - not after. 10. I will not come in from outside and immediately drag my butt across the carpet. 11. I will not sit in the middle of the living room and lick my crotch. ISI

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Terry Lee Has Found Himself In His Art Article & Photo By Jack McNeel Terry Lee was 45 and still could not grasp what he really wanted to do. Sixteen years later, after things came together, he is a very successful artist. Painting is his primary source of income, but sculpting is another love that has produced a number of monumental sculptures. He is presently in the process of crafting a life-sized Masai woman for a collector. Terry was born and raised in Coeur d’Alene. His dad was the first president of North Idaho College back in 1936. Terry spent his first year of college at N.I.C., then two years on a Mormon mission to England before returning to Ricks College and then to B.Y.U., where he graduated in art and design. He laughs as he tells about his introduction to art. “I was into accounting but took an elective art class. I knew absolutely nothing! I had never painted. I didn’t know colors. I didn’t know brushes. I should have had Art 101, but as a junior, I got into an advanced figure painting class. My instructor said maybe I should do something else.” Terry first moved to California, where he got his SCUBA license. The next 20 years he spent in the sporting goods business in Coeur d’Alene – Lee’s Outdoor Outfitter – with his older brother. It included a dive shop called Divers West, along with top-flight gun and ski shops. He remained there until 1985, when he returned to San Diego. He taught diving. He got a real estate license. “I was bad at that,” he relates. Then he got into the mortgage business. “I was really bad at that,” he says with a laugh. Painting was just a hobby, but a friend asked if he could take some of his paintings to a gallery for the owner’s opinion. The gallery owner replied that Terry had good design and good color and recommended he take a year off, take a couple workshops from high quality artists, and just paint. “You should be able to make $200,000 a year,” he added. Terry’s thought was if he could make just $25,000 a year and be an artist, he’d be happier than what he was doing. “That was my goal.” He was 45 years old. Today he sells single paintings for $25,000. He returned to Coeur d’Alene, took classes in Spokane, then decided to hire his own model and work from his own studio. About that time, he also met George Carlson, one of the best sculptors in the nation and a top-flight painter. Terry started

offering his studio for painting classes and later sculpting classes. He provided the model, and George was one who attended, to both work and to offer advice to others. Those classes still continue weekly. Monday offers a painting workshop, and Tuesday offers a sculpting workshop. “George has been an unbelievable benefit to my career,” Terry notes. Terry paints mostly wildlife. He originally wanted to do work like Monet: long dress, parasol, lady, and children at the beach. He says he wasn’t good at that and figured, “I’m in Idaho. I’d better paint an elk. Let’s paint what’s going to sell, and I began pursuing the animals.” This led him to exhibiting at Safari Club meetings, a group that is made up of hunters, many of whom are pretty well off fi i ll It I cost a lot l to rent space, but he found financially. it paid off. “I did that (first) show, and it just took off. My prices doubled. I had a collector take me to Africa, where I painted while he hunted.” Independent Living... His second trip to Africa came when he was On Your Terms invited by a collector in New York City who had If remaining in your home 100,000 acres in Zimbarequires help, contact: bwe. “I was there two weeks,” says Terry, who was one of five artists who were invited, each Disability Action Center during different twoweek sessions. “He paid for all of it. He wanted us to teach underprivileged Qualified Medicaid and Private Pay Options kids in the area what we do and try to give them a Coeur d’Alene Moscow Lewiston future.” It also gave Terry (208) 664-9896 (208) 883-0523 (208) 746-9033 time to photograph and paint African wildlife.” Visit us online at dacnw.org Because Terry works

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from photographs, a good camera and a long lens are invaluable on these trips. Terry describes his style as “real contemporary. It’s kind of impressionism, but it’s more expressionism.” Terry feels his small paintings do not have the impact that large pieces have, so he is known for large paintings. “My average painting size is 48 x 60.” He works with galleries in a number of towns, including Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Vail, Colorado. People in these areas were buying second and third homes and needed a big painting over the fireplace or a big feature in the room. “That’s what my market was.” In this economy, people haven’t been buying those second and third homes, and sales are down, “but it’s starting to come back in the last three months. I’ve seen a lot more sales than I’ve seen in the last two years.” He does some still-life, landscapes, and marine paintings, such as fishing boats, “but it’s the animals that carry the major punch for me.” Three things set Terry aside from most wildlife artists. First is the size, up to 10 feet by 10 feet. Second is the color. “My color is pretty unique to me,” he says. “It’s a little bit odd. When I start a painting, I’ll try this color – oh that didn’t work, so let’s try this (other) color. Oh, I like that. That’s

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

cool. Let’s do this. Let’s do that,” he exclaims, the excitement coming through as he talks. The third thing that sets him apart from many wildlife artists is the freedom from being a draftsman, where every hair on the animals is important. That’s a style many people like, but for Terry, it’s just not his thing. “I want it to look like an oil painting. I want to see the brush strokes, and I want to push the color. If someone said to me, ‘that looks like a photograph,’ I’d want to crawl in a hole. To me, that’s not painting.” The Mountain Trails Gallery in Jackson Hole has two of his large sculptures. One is a giant moose, 10 ½ feet tall, 13 feet long, and weighing

3000 pounds. There’s also a life-sized grizzly. People can view and buy his paintings in Coeur d’Alene at Seasons Restaurant, where a sizeable number are on display. He continues to work hard, always trying to improve. “Every painting is a challenge. I can’t get bored. Until I die, I’ll be pushing paint all around the canvas because it’s exciting to me. Even the sound of it as the paint touches the canvas is exciting!” His advice to others is simply to do what you love, and you’ll be a happier person. “I’ll probably never want to retire,” he says, due to the enjoyment and excitement that art provides him. ISI

What is Hospice Care? Provided By Roberta Wold Alliance Home Health and Hospice Hospice – It’s not a Place…It is a way of caring! Hospice is a very specialized way of caring for terminally ill individuals while providing care, education, and support to their families. The concept of Hospice began as a guesthouse that was available to sick travelers who needed to rest during a long journey. Today the idea of hospice is to offer compassionate care to people who are nearing the end of life. The focus of Hospice is on the individual and their family, not the disease process. The main goal of Hospice is to provide assistance, care, and comfort through a team of caring professionals that includes a medical director, a registered nurse, a licensed practical nurse, certified nursing assistants, licensed social workers, a chaplain for spiritual support, and volunteers. Before a person receives Hospice care, nurses and physicians review the client’s disease history, current symptoms, and life expectancy. Hospice can be provided anywhere the individual calls home. Who qualifies for Hospice care? Any person who has been diagnosed with a terminal illness and a life expectancy of six months or less is qualified. They can be any age from an infant to a senior citizen. The person must have a physician’s order to receive Hospice care.

What is Palliative care? Palliative care focuses on making a person comfortable by reducing or taking away the symptoms of an illness. None of this medical care will make the disease go away, but instead it will help keep the patient as comfortable as possible as the disease progresses. How is Hospice paid for? Hospice is a benefit covered by most private insurance companies, HMOs, Medicare, and Medicaid and is available to anyone who needs it. Under the Medicare Hospice benefit, the patient and family are never billed for Hospice services, equipment, or medications that are related to the terminal diagnosis. Hospice social workers address and assist with finding funds to pay for the care of clients who have no health insurance through community funds and charitable foundations. Hospice is not for everyone. People have the right to decide if Hospice is a service they need or want. The important thing is that they understand the services that Hospice offers, so they can make the best decision for themselves and their loved ones. When you and a loved one are facing end-of-life decisions, you may want to discuss what options are available to you with your physician. For more information on how Hospice can help, you can call an Alliance Home Health & Hospice office: Idaho Falls – 208-552-0249; Pocatello – 208-478-6677; Malad – 208-766-5143; Twin Falls – 208-733-2234; Rexburg – 208-359-9667; St. George, Utah – 435-656-2889. ISI

Coping With Uncertainty When Caring For A Loved One... Planning and Self-Care Can Minimize Anxiety By Lisa M. Petsche Looking after an aging relative, however personally rewarding it can be, is not without its share of stress. If the relative has been diagnosed with a chronic illness, one source of stress may be uncertainty about the future. For instance, how are your relative’s needs likely to change and over what period of time? Will you be physically, mentally, and emotionally able to handle the caregiving role on an ongoing basis? Will your relative eventually require residential care? While no one knows what the future holds, there are strategies that caregivers can use to minimize surprises and cope with challenges and changes.


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Accept â&#x20AC;˘ Accept the reality of your relativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s illness. Let go of any bitterness resulting from unrealized plans and dreams, so that you can move forward and channel your energy in constructive ways. â&#x20AC;˘ Recognize that you are only human, and allow yourself to experience all of the emotions that surface. â&#x20AC;˘ Accept that how your relative feels and what they can do may fluctuate, and be flexible about plans and expectations. Learn â&#x20AC;˘ Educate yourself about your relativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s medical diagnosis. â&#x20AC;˘ Be open to learning practical skills, such as proper transferring and bathing techniques. Mastering these tasks will make caregiving as safe, easy, and pleasant as possible. â&#x20AC;˘ Find out about community services that can assist you and your relative. The local Area Agency on Aging is a good resource. Communicate â&#x20AC;˘ Allow yourself plenty of time to adjust to your relativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s illness and the changes it necessitates. Your relative will also need time to adapt. Be patient, and keep the lines of communication open. â&#x20AC;˘ Keep the rest of the family informed of changes in your relativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s physical and mental status. â&#x20AC;˘ Involve your relative and other family members in decision-making as much as possible. â&#x20AC;˘ Share information with healthcare professionals about your relativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s needs, abilities, and preferences. Ask questions, express concerns, and offer opinions as you feel the need. Prepare â&#x20AC;˘ Find a medical specialist whom you and your relative respect and trust. â&#x20AC;˘ Find out what to expect during the course of the illness in terms of probable symptom progression as well as caregiving skills, medical equipment, and community supports that are likely to be needed. â&#x20AC;˘ Talk openly with your relative about their wishes. Discuss living arrangements, outside help, surrogate decision-making, medical intervention, and end-of-life care and funeral arrangements. Be careful, though, not to make any promises you may not be able to keep. â&#x20AC;˘ Help your relative get their affairs in order, including completing legal paperwork, such as advance directives, durable powers of attorney, and last will and testament. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re concerned about your relative being alone in public or at home, provide medical alert jewelry and a personal emergency response system for summoning help. This can give you peace of mind while giving them autonomy. Simplify â&#x20AC;˘ Eliminate as many sources of stress in your life as possible. Set priorities, streamline tasks, and learn to settle for less than perfection.

â&#x20AC;˘ Take things one day at a time, so you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t become overwhelmed. â&#x20AC;˘ Learn to live in the moment, and focus on lifeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s simpler pleasures. Practice self-care â&#x20AC;˘ Cultivate a healthy sense of humor. â&#x20AC;˘ Set aside quiet time each day, to nurture your spirituality and help keep you grounded. If applicable, turn to your religious faith for support. â&#x20AC;˘ Do something that provides you with meaning and purpose outside of the caregiving role, such as scrapbooking or researching your family tree. â&#x20AC;˘ Look after your health. Eat nutritious meals, get adequate rest, exercise, and see your primary physician regularly. â&#x20AC;˘ Find something relaxing you can do to give yourself a daily break â&#x20AC;&#x201C; perhaps reading, writing, or listening to music. â&#x20AC;˘ Schedule regular breaks from caregiving duties. Take a couple of hours a day or an overnight. By being kind to yourself this way, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll also be more effective when you resume your caregiving tasks. Connect â&#x20AC;˘ Stay connected to your friends. â&#x20AC;˘ Find at least one person you can talk to openly â&#x20AC;&#x201C; someone who will listen and empathize. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s important to express your thoughts and feelings. â&#x20AC;˘ Talk with other caregivers. They understand better than anyone else what you are going through. Join a support group in your community or on the Internet. Get help â&#x20AC;˘ Accept offers of help. Ask other family members to share the load, and be specific about the help you need. You canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t, and shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t, do everything alone. â&#x20AC;˘ Research and take advantage of respite services available in your community. â&#x20AC;˘ Join a caregiversâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; organization â&#x20AC;&#x201C; for example, the National Family Caregivers Association (www. nfcacares.org) â&#x20AC;&#x201C; that offers information and support and advocates for caregiversâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; needs. â&#x20AC;˘ Seek help from your primary physician or a counselor if you continually feel sad, angry, or overwhelmed. Such feelings, when they persist, may be symptomatic of clinical depression. The good news is that itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s treatable. Lisa M. Petsche is a social worker and a freelance writer specializing in boomer and senior issues. She has personal and professional experience with elder care. ISI

Grandpa, What Is Couple Sex? An 8-year-old girl went to her grandfather, who was working in the yard and asked him, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Grandpa, what is couple sex?â&#x20AC;? The grandfather was surprised that she would ask such a question, but decided that if she was old enough to know to ask the question, then she was old enough to get a straight answer. Steeling himself to leave nothing out, he proceeded to tell her all about human reproduction and the joys and responsibilities of the consequences. When he finished explaining, the little girl was looking at him with her mouth hanging open, eyes wide in amazement. Seeing the look on her face, the grandfather asked her, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Why did you ask this question, %ASTLAND$RIVEs4WIN&ALLS )$ honey?â&#x20AC;? 0HONEs&AX 4OLL&REE The little girl replied, This facility is a Joint Commission â&#x20AC;&#x153;Grandma says that dinaccredited agency. ner will be ready in just LHCgroup.com Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s All About Helping People.ÂŽ a couple secs.â&#x20AC;? ISI

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Alzheimer’s Research Advances with New Discovery of Genetic Influences By Tait Trussell After what seemed like months without a front-page story about Alzheimer’s disease, the New York Times ran an important piece last April. It described two studies that analyzed the genes of over 50,000 people in the United States and Europe. The discoveries double the number of genes involved in Alzheimer’s from 5 to 10. The research also sheds new light on contributing factors, such as cholesterol, inflammation, and the concept of innate immunity. The newly discovered genes don’t seem to increase a person’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s, however, as much as having one or two copies of the APOE 4 gene, but they are likely to be helpful in understanding the disease and maybe

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in developing treatments. Researchers say the studies, leave little doubt that the five genes make the disease more likely in the elderly and have something important to reveal about the disease’s process. They may also lead to ways to delay its onset or slow its progress. “The level of evidence is very, very strong,” said Dr. Michael Boehnke, a professor of biostatistics at the University of Michigan and an outside adviser on the research. For years, there has been unproven information, but hints that cholesterol and inflammation are part of the disease process. People with high cholesterol are more likely to get the disease. Strokes and head injuries, which make Alzheimer’s more likely, also cause brain inflammation. Now, some of the newly discovered genes appear to bolster this notion, because some are involved with cholesterol and others are linked to inflammation inside cells. An estimated 5.4 million Americans have the incurable Alzheimer’s disease, most of whom are elderly. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in eight people over age 65 has the disease. Its annual cost to the country is $183 billion health experts have estimated. By themselves, the genes are not nearly as important a factor as APOE, a gene discovered in 1995 that greatly increases risk for the disease: by 400 percent if a person inherits a copy from one parent, by 1,000 percent if inherited from both parents. In contrast, each of the new genes increases risk by no more than 10 to 15 percent; for that reason, they will not be used to decide if a person is likely to develop Alzheimer’s. APOE, which is a protein involved in metabolizing cholesterol, is in a class of its own says Dr. Rudolph Tanzi, a neurology professor at Harvard Medical School and an author of one of the papers. Of the 10 genes now known to be associated with Alzheimer’s in old age, four were found in the past few years and are confirmed by the new studies. APOE may have other roles in the disease, perhaps involved in clearing the brain of amyloids that pile up in plaques, the barnaclelike particles that dot the brain of Alzheimer’s patients. They are the one unique pathological feature of the disease, the Times story said. It is known that one of the first signs of Alzheimer’s disease is an accumulation of beta amyloid, or a-beta, a protein that forms plaques. And it is known that later in the disease, twisted and tangled proteins – called tau – appear in

dead and dying nerve cells. But what is not known is why a-beta starts to build up, why the brains of people with Alzheimer’s cannot get rid of its excess, or what is the link between amyloid and tau. One of the new papers, by American investigators, analyzed the genes of 54,000 people, some with Alzheimer’s and others the same age but without the disease. They found four new genes. The other paper is by researchers in Britain, France, and other European countries with contributions from the United States. They confirmed the genes found by the American researchers and added one more gene. One of the researchers, Dr. Schellenberg set out to gather all the data he could on Alzheimer’s patients and on healthy people of the same ages. The idea was to compare one million positions on each person’s genome to determine whether some genes were more common in those who had Alzheimer’s. “I spent a lot of time being nice to people on the phone,” Dr. Schellenberg said, according to the Times. He got what he wanted: nearly every Alzheimer’s center and Alzheimer’s geneticist in the country cooperated. Dr. Schellenberg and his colleagues used the mass of genetic data to perform an analysis and find the genes. Then, using two different populations, they confirmed that the same genes were conferring the risk. That helped assure the investigators that they were not looking at a chance association. It was a huge effort, Dr. Mayeux said. Many medical centers had Alzheimer’s patients’ tissue sitting in freezers. They had to extract the DNA and do genome scans. “One of my jobs was to make sure the Alzheimer’s cases really were cases – that they had used some reasonable criteria for diagnosis,” Dr. Mayeux said. “And I had to be sure that people who were unaffected really were unaffected.” Meanwhile, the European group, led by Dr. Julie Williams of the School of Medicine at Cardiff University, was engaged in a similar effort. Dr. Schellenberg said the two groups compared their results and were reassured that they were largely finding the same genes. “If there were mistakes, we wouldn’t see the same things,” he added. Now the European and American groups are pooling their data to do an enormous study, looking for genes in the combined samples. “We are upping the sample size,” Dr. Schellenberg said. “We are pretty sure more stuff will pop out.” ISI


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

Oh, the fleeting nature of time! It seems when we are young there is so much of it, but as we age, we become more aware of how little is left. Looking back honestly, it is easy to recall choices we made during our lives that prioritized work and apparently important obligations over family, friends, and relationships This issue, our winning Remember When contributor, Julie Hollar, has submitted a very timely piece, A Young Man Learns What Is Most Important In Life, that addresses how important our use of time is and how deeply we might regret our misuse of it. Thank you and congratulations to Julie, the winner of our $25 Remember When prize. Remember When contains our readers’ personal reflections or contri-

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 27

butions describing fictional or non-fictional events from some time in the past. Contributions may be stories, letters, artwork, poems, essays, etc. Photos may be included. Each issue of the Idaho Senior Independent features the contribution(s) deemed best by our staff. The contributor of the winning entry receives a $25 cash prize. We look forward to receiving your contributions for our December 2012/January 2013 issue. Mail your correspondence to Idaho Senior Independent, P.O. Box 3341, Great Falls, MT 59403, email to idahoseniorind@ bresnan.net, or call 1-866-360-5683 or 208-318-0310.

A young man learns what is most important in life from an old friend Submitted by Julie Hollar-Brantley It had been some time since Bob had seen the old gentleman. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Bob moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Bob had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future and nothing could stop him. Over the phone, his mother told him, “Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday.” Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days. “Bob, did you hear me?” “Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It’s been so long since I thought of him. I’m sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago,” Bob said. “Well, he didn’t forget you. Every time I saw him he’d ask how you were doing. He’d reminisce about the many days you spent over ‘his side of the fence’ as he put it,” Mom told him. “I loved that old house he lived in,” Bob said. “You know, Bob, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man’s influence in your life,” she said. “He’s the one who taught me carpentry,” he said. “I wouldn’t be in this business if it weren’t for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important... Mom, I’ll be there for the funeral,” Bob said. As busy as he was, he kept his word. Bob caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser’s funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away. The night before he had to return home, Bob and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time. Standing in the doorway, Bob paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time. The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture... Bob stopped suddenly. “What’s wrong, Bob?” his Mom asked. “The box is gone,” he said

“What box?” his Mom asked. “There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he’d ever tell me was ‘the thing I value most,’” Bob said. It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Bob remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it. “Now I’ll never know what was so valuable to him,” Bob said. “I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom.” It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from work one day Bob discovered a note in his mailbox. “Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days,” the note read. Early the next day Bob retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention. “Mr. Harold Belser” it read. Bob took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Bob’s hands shook as he read the note inside. “Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Bob Bennett. It’s the thing I valued most in my life.” A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Bob carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch. Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved: “Bob, Thanks for your time! - Harold Belser.” “The thing he valued most was... my time.” Bob held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. “Why?” Janet, his assistant asked. “I need some time to spend with my son,” he said. “Oh, by the way Janet, thanks for your time!” Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away. ISI


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New Mastectomy Items Help Women Feel Comfortable and Confident After Breast Surgery By Bernice Karnop Debbie King and Lisa Malespin, certified fitters at Brownfield’s Prosthetics and Orthotics in Boise, say they have the best job in the world. They get to meet and know wonderful women and help them feel confident that they can wear almost anything in their closet and look normal after a mastectomy. Debbie and Lisa are both certified by the Camp Institute of Applied Technology and the American Board for Certification in Orthotics and Prosthetics. They have helped women find breast forms and mastectomy bras that are comfortable and that allow them to feel feminine and pretty. After undergoing breast cancer treatment, women may have breast reconstruction surgery, or they may choose to have a prosthesis that can be worn in a pocket of their bra. It is important to do one or the other for more reasons than to look good. When a breast is removed or altered, the body shifts out of balance. An implant or breast form helps balance the body, preventing back or neck pain. It helps keep one shoulder from dropping and the other one from lifting up. Many women choose to have breast

reconstruction right after surgery. Others are tired of the medical aspect of breast cancer after having a mastectomy and going through chemo and radiation. “They just want to take a time out and wear our items for a while and then reconsider having reconstruction a year or two down the road.” Debbie says. The breast forms cost around $350 and the bras around $50. The good news is that most medical insurance pays or helps pay for mastectomy items. Brownfield’s helps patients with the task of dealing with their insurance companies and with Medicare. Brownfield’s developed a packet that patients can take to their doctor to make sure they comply with the recent changes in Medicare’s policy for these items. Women who have worn breast forms for years or who have never been comfortably fit with them can call for a consultation without obligation. Debbie says there are new options that were not available in the past. For example, silicone breast forms come in a variety of weights, including a lightweight one that is infused with air. A super lightweight form is made from medical grade Styrofoam beads. Many find this one to be cooler and more comfortable during the hot months. Some breast forms adhere to a woman’s chest and are more comfortable to some women who say these forms feel more like part of their body. Readers can call Brownfield’s Prosthetics and Orthotics in Boise at 208-342-4659 and schedule an appointment. Individuals will have a chance to sit in a comfortable area and talk about the options. Then they can try on bras and prostheses in a private and comfortable setting. The Boutique carries more than 20 different bra styles and has catalogs with even more choices. “Our goal is to have everyone happy with what we fit them with,” says Debbie. “If they are not comfortable and are not happy with it, we want to know about it, so we can fit them with something they are happy with, something they want to use.” Debbie and Lisa go home each day knowing that they have helped women to feel happy and confident about how they look after a mastectomy. And, it works both ways. “It not only makes our patients feel good; it makes us feel good as well,” she says. With three locations in the Boise area, Brownfield’s Prosthetics and Orthotics fits individuals of all ages with prosthetics and orthotics of all kinds. Learn more at www.brownfieldstech.com. ISI

What other people may find in poetry or art museums, I find in the flight of a good drive. - Arnold Parmer


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 29

Fighting Osteoporosis By Linda Hightower, RN, ONC A woman falls on her way to the mailbox and lies there until someone walks by to rescue her, because she has broken her hip and cannot get up. She goes to the hospital for surgical repair of the hip and dies of complications several days later. This scenario is more prevalent than we would expect. There are more than 350,000 hip fractures every year due to osteoporosis. Nearly a quarter of those people will die after their fracture. There are more than a million other fractures also due to osteoporosis. Did you know that half of the women over the age of fifty will suffer a fracture due to osteoporosis in their remaining lifetime? This does not have to be! Osteoporosis is preventable and treatable. Osteoporosis is a disease process that slowly steals strength from bone making it easily broken. It occurs more frequently in women than men and more frequently among older people. Some things we can do to prevent osteoporosis include: • Consuming enough calcium and vitamin D - Calcium is a big part of the material needed to build stronger bones. Most of our bone strength is accumulated during teen years so teens need about 1300 mg of calcium a day. Adults need about 1000 mg a day to maintain bone strength. The most common source of calcium is dairy products. An eight-ounce glass of milk whether non-fat or whole milk contains about 300 mg of calcium. That same glass of milk is also fortified with 200 International Units of vitamin D that helps the body absorb the calcium. Some other food

sources of calcium include cheese, yogurt, and sardines. If your consumption of these foods is very low, you may think about adding supplements to your diet. • Exercise is very important as well. Exercise does for bones what it does for muscles - makes them stronger. When we stress our bones with exercise, they respond by building more mass to make them stronger. Weight-bearing exercise like walking, running, hiking, dancing, and skiing are best. • Talk to your doctor about osteoporosis. Find out if you are at risk. Some important risk factors include family history of osteoporosis, smoking, and using certain kinds of medications. • Have a DEXA scan. This test is easily done and relatively inexpensive. It will tell you exactly how much bone mass you have. It will also help your doctor develop a treatment plan for you if one is needed. Talk to a physical therapist about preventing falls. They can evaluate your balance and give you an exercise program to help improve balance, strength, and endurance to help prevent those falls that can result in broken bones and other injuries.

There is no cure for osteoporosis yet but there are medications that will help improve strength so that when a fall does occur, it is not so likely to result in a broken bone. Protect your bones; they need to last your lifetime. ISI


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Your Best Shot of the Season Is A Flu Shot By Bernice Karnop Sometimes your best shot of the fall nets more than trophy antlers. In fact, many readers line up each fall for a special shot – one that targets the flu. “It really doesn’t hurt as much as you might think,” assures Mary Kay Burns, RN. “Getting a flu shot protects not only you, but it also protects the whole community.” The flu is a serious disease, especially for those with respiratory conditions like asthma, COPD, or other lung issues. It is gateway for pneumonia, which may land you in the hospital for an extensive vacation you won’t enjoy. Even if you don’t get a flu shot for yourself, be a sport, and get it for those you love. You don’t want to be the one responsible for passing this disease on to your precious grandchildren, great-grandchildren, or any child in the community. Flu is more severe for babies and young children. Your inoculation could well help prevent an outbreak among your family and friends. Asked about the risks of getting the flu shot, Burns states, “There really aren’t any.” People with severe allergies to eggs or

other ingredients of the flu shot will not be able to get a flu shot. If you are sick or have a fever, simply wait a few days until you feel better. The inoculation is very effective in preventing the flu. If you do get the flu after having the immunization, the symptoms will be less severe than if you hadn’t had the shot. According to Burns, it’s best to get the shot in the fall, so you will be covered for the entire flu season. Since immunity lasts from six to eight months, you need to get a flu shot every year. Because it is so important that everyone get a flu shot, the Health Department makes it very easy. Your can get your flu shot from your doctor or at your local health department. In my community, they hold drive-thru clinics, where you do not even have to get out of your car. They have flu shot clinics in places like the Senior Centers and pharmacies. Burns says it makes no difference. They’re all the same. Your really have no excuse to not get a flu shot. Last year I got mine at Sam’s Club! ISI

American Lung Association Helps You Breathe Easily Do you or a loved one suffer from COPD, emphysema, asthma, or other chronic lung disease? Our FREE Better Breathers Clubs offer support and education. Please join us: call 208-345-2209 for meeting times and locations! Did you know that COPD is now the third leading cause of death in the United States? November is COPD Awareness Month and the American Lung Association is committed to raising awareness, improving patient education and support, and to funding cutting-edge research to find better treatments. November is also Lung Cancer Awareness

Month. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with lung cancer, contact Kera Goold at 208-3452209 to find out how to attend our FREE “Frankly Speaking About Lung Cancer” workshop in Boise, early November. The American Lung Association in Idaho has been working for over 104 years to promote lung health and prevent lung disease through research, advocacy, and education. Your planned gift to the Lung Association creates a legacy of health so future generations can breathe easy. Contact Jan Flynn at 208-345-2216 or jflynn@lungmtpacific. org to find out how you can help. ISI

Watching the Mad Men Die By Bill Hall I stopped filling my lungs with cigarette smoke years ago, so I suppose it was inevitable that I would retreat in horror from a television program that filled my mind with the memory of smoldering coffin nails. I refer to the AMC series Mad Men that has won widespread acclaim. My wife and I decided to check out the series starting with the initial episodes from five years ago. And that’s possible. Unlike smokers, television series never die. Some of us prefer it that way. Instead of tuning in each week to a live broadcast, we wait a few years and then, if a series seems to measure up,

we watch the installments in batches of two or three at a time. When we have a slow week, we binge on episodes, getting over the agony of waiting to find out how the story ends. There’s nothing new about that. My generation cut its teeth half a century ago on Saturday movie theater series that were known appropriately as “cliff hangers.” Typically, each episode would end with a heroine hanging from a cliff by her lovely manicured nails, and then the screen would fade to black with the announcer urging us to return next Saturday to see whether Pauline escaped a horrible death. Pauline never died. To this day, she is living

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somewhere on a reel of film – and on YouTube, of course. Mad Men is like that, but with the characters sitting calmly in their ad agency chairs smoking like chimneys, hanging on, not by their lovely nails, but by their sooty lungs. The series accurately and chillingly portrays office life as it was in the 1960s when everybody inside a workplace smoked. And I mean everybody, either directly with a cigarette between his lips or as an innocent victim sitting there inhaling office air dense with tobacco smoke. Smoking was especially prevalent in newspaper offices. It went with our image of ourselves as social rebels inclined toward working hard and playing hard, complete with Humphrey Bogart rain coats, a glass of hooch in one hand, a pack of smokes in our shirt pockets, and the pose of a crusader committed to comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable. Somehow, smoking was supposed to go with that image. It was as if the bad guys had no respect for an investigative reporter if he didn’t smell like burning weeds. Then one day I came home from my crusading journalist duties feeling half-sick. I realized I had polished off two packs of cigarettes in an eight-hour shift. Angry with myself, I stubbed out my last cigarette, gritted my teeth for a couple of months, and slammed the door on coffin nails forever. After a year or so, a strange thing happened: I started dreaming about smoking. And I wasn’t dreaming that I wanted a cigarette. The opposite was true. It was a nightmare, a dream that I had fallen off the smoke wagon and started the downside of smoking all over again – the yellow fingers, the ashtray-flavored mouth, the holes burned in polyester slacks, the lingering background fear of a smoker that he’s headed for that Big Smokehouse in the Sky where he will spend eternity sitting next to Humphrey Bogart while both hack their lungs out, pretty much ruining their gig in the celestial choir. After two installments of Mad Men, we snuffed out that series because it was so depressing watching all those fictional TV characters smoking and especially because we feared for the actual present-day damage to those Mad Men actors on that set. It was like watching a train crash in slow motion. I read that the actors were actually smoking some kind of dried vegetable cigarettes, allegedly safer than tobacco. But smoke is no way to treat your lungs even if it contains no nicotine. The whole thing was ominous to an exsmoker. I was once in a car crash and I don’t want to watch a television series about that. A television story on a former foolish habit is in the same ballpark. So we bailed on Mad Men.

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 31

I admit that the show is amazingly accurate in its portrayal of smoking in an office half a lifetime ago. But watching actors shortening their lives with corrosive vegetarian smoke is far more gruesome than it is entertaining. Bill Hall may be contacted at wilberth@cableone.net or at 1012 Prospect Ave., Lewiston, ID 83501. ISI


PAGE 32 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

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Diabetes On-The-Go A whole industry has grown up around freeing diabetics to lead less restricted lives. Tubeless insulin pumps, a needleless blood-glucose monitoring system, and diabetic-friendly frozen foods are among the innovations helping people with the metabolic disorder to live lives on the go. With the number of diabetics growing worldwide – 246 million at last count, according to the World Health Organization – businesses are motivated. In 2011, diabetes therapeutic products were a $23.7 billion dollar industry feeding a growing population that’s starving for a better quality of life, says Chef Robert Lewis, “The Happy Diabetic,” author of two cookbooks for people with the metabolic disorder. “It wasn’t long ago that Type 1 diabetics had to be sure they packed ample sterile syringes and insulin, whether they were going to work for the day or on a road trip,” he says. “Monitoring blood sugar levels, which is crucial to keeping vital organs healthy, was painful, primitive, and hit-or-miss. “And food? That’s been the hardest. A diabetes diagnosis can feel like a life sentence of bland eating.” Among the “firsts” Lewis says diabetics can look forward to: • The first tubeless insulin pump. Thirty years ago, people with insulindependent diabetes had to give themselves shots around the clock to control their blood sugar levels. In some cases, diabetics were hospitalized to ensure they got the insulin necessary to prevent ketoacidosis, a condition that can lead to coma and death. In 1983, the insulin pump was introduced. It attaches to the body and provides continuous insulin injections. But while it was a major breakthrough, it can be bulky and awkward, with a dangling catheter. The most recent innovation is a streamlined version called the OmniPod. It has no tubes, it’s smaller, and it attaches anywhere on the body with adhesive. It also has a built-in glucose-monitoring system. • The first needleless glucometer. The Symphony tCGM System uses ultrasound to monitor blood sugar levels, which will free people from the painful pricks needed to get a small blood sample for testing multiple times a day. The device, which attaches with adhesive to the body, continuously tracks glucose levels day and night and can send the readings to your smart phone. Under development for more than a decade, Symphony is undergoing the studies necessary to win regulatory approval. • The first diabetic-friendly frozen meals. Meals-in-a-Bun (www. lifestylechefs.net) arrived in Northeast U.S. grocery stores in July and will roll out across the country through the end of the year. They’re low on the glycemic index, low in sugar and carbs, high in soluble fiber, low in trans fat, high in lean protein, and low in sodium, Lewis says. “And the best thing is, they are delicious.” The five varieties – two vegan and three vegetarian – include selections like Thai Satay – mushrooms, broccoli, and tofu in a whole-wheat flax bun. “This is particularly exciting because, while there have been advances in equipment that makes life easier for diabetics, there haven’t been for convenient, packaged foods.” Diabetics who do not watch what they eat may wind up suffering kidney damage, stomach problems, heart disease, pneumonia, gum disease, blindness, stroke, nerve damage, complications during pregnancy, loss of limb, and other health problems, according to the CDC. But many Americans are trending toward healthier diets, eating less meat, gluten, salt, and sugar, Lewis says. Tasty foods developed for diabetics will be excellent choices for them, too. “What’s good for diabetics is good for everyone,” he says. “And you don’t have to give up one teaspoon of flavor. “There’s a reason why I am called The Happy Diabetic; I have discovered the joy of nutrition-rich food.” Lifestyle Chefs is a Santa Clara, Calif., company specializing in creating meals inspired by world cuisines and using only natural, healthy, and nutritious ingredients. Lifestyle Chefs’ products are all vegetarian and diabetic-friendly, perfect for families who want fast, convenient meals that are low in calories, high in nutrition, and robust in flavor. Chef Robert Lewis, The Happy Diabetic, was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 1998. He specializes in flavorful recipes that won’t spike a diabetic’s blood sugar. ISI

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Slow Weight Loss Will Result In Better Results By Rebecca Conroy, Community Medical Center Current media has tricked us into thinking that exercise means tremendous and immediate weight loss. The truth is that for most of us who are not in great shape, exercise will help us to build muscle as we start to lose fat. This can mean frustration because the scale does not change. If weight is lost too quickly, it often means there is muscle loss. Muscle burns calories, so keeping muscle as you lose weight is important. Slower truly is better. The scale is only one measure of body composition. Body composition is the amount of fat and amount of other things â&#x20AC;&#x201C; brain, bones, and muscles â&#x20AC;&#x201C; that you are made of. You control the amount of muscle you have. You can increase your muscle size, which increases the weight of muscle. Muscle is denser than fat. This means that increasing the percentage of your weight made up of muscle generally makes you smaller. Gradual weight loss is a sign that you have transformed the lifestyle habits that create fat into lifestyle habits that create healthy muscle. Most people are interested in losing weight when they start an exercise program, which is good. There are so many advantages to increased activity that are not limited to losing weight, all of which will assist you in healthy weight loss. The goal of exercise should be to increase strength, increase flexibility, and increase aerobic conditioning. These three things, when balanced, will lead to weight loss for multiple reasons. As you increase your strength, you increase your muscle mass. More muscle mass means more calories burned, even when you are brushing your teeth. Increased flexibility keeps you limber and helps avoid injuries. Increasing aerobic conditioning requires movement, and movement burns calories. Exercise helps your body to use oxygen more efficiently. This translates into an easier time, and less huffing and puffing, when walking, hiking, and riding bicycles, and general active working or playing. Exercise increases your ability to lift, move, run, and walk because your muscles are in better shape. Exercise increases your self-esteem. Do you know someone with a poor self-esteem? Help that person by working out together. Your body will do what you want it to, and that is a great feeling. Increased activity and exercise make you steadier on your feet. If you have an elderly friend or family member, you can help that person avoid a potentially life threatening injury from a fall by working out together. Consult a healthcare provider for your appropriate activity level. Now for the bad news: activity increases hunger. In order to lose weight in a steady and safe fashion, and to keep it off, exercise must be paired with healthy eating habits. Losing weight is not about getting skinny fast. It is about being healthy, so you can be around for your children and their children, so you can enjoy life more fully. Exercise and activity are about being healthy. ISI

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Floating the Smith River in Montana By Natalie Bartley Photos by Dave Lindsay or Natalie Bartley Nothing soothes the soul more than a multi-day float trip on a scenic river. The Smith River in west central Montana stands as a prime example of an enticing destination. Rafters, canoeists, kayakers, and drift boaters ply its waterway, oft in pursuit of rainbow and brown trout. This past summer I had the good fortune to float the 59-mile stretch of the Smith River from Camp Baker outside of the town of White Sulphur Springs to Eden Bridge south of Great Falls. The river meanders through the Little Belt and Castle Mountains to the east and the Big Belt Mountains to the west. At the lower end of the canyon, the terrain widens and shifts to open range with ranching enterprises. This famous trout stream is suitable for intermediate boating skills. Months later, I still have vivid memories of floating peacefully past miles of colorful limestone canyon walls and through deep forests. Mergansers and mallards kept us company as they herded their young through small riffles. Canada geese calmly rested on grass-filled shorelines. Green dragonflies and assorted butterflies floated near my inflatable kayak, allowing me a close inspection of their beauty when

they landed on my gear bags. Each campsite was clearly marked by a sign visible from the river. Four nights of wilderness camping allowed for wildlife viewing. A bald eagle soared then perched in a tree next to our camp one evening. Swallows circled in pursuit of insects, then flew back to their cliff-side nest at middle Sunset Cliff campsite. Fish jumped in the cool of the mornings and evenings. Deer cautiously moved along the riverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bank, seeking water. Wild flowers showed sunny faces during short uphill hikes from our campsite. Though the main float season generally runs from mid-April to mid-July, a permit is required year-round. My friends secured one through the annual lottery drawing. The Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, the Lewis and Clark National Forest, and the Helena National Forest manage this stretch of river. Suggested water flows for each type of non-motorized boat are posted on the Smith River website listed at the end of this article. The day before the launch, we confirmed our vehicle shuttle and checked in with the river ranger at the put in. Users are required to camp at the designated campsites assigned the morning of your launch. The permit holder in our group arrived the day before to get on the list to request campsites. Even arriving a day early, two groups were ahead of us on the campsite selection roster. During the check-in process on launch day, we paid $60 (cash or check) per person to cover the non-resident camping fee for four nights on the river. Residents and certain age groups pay a lower amount. The ranger gave us permits to attach to the boats, provided everyone with a river map, and reviewed the river regulations for keeping the river pristine and safe for future use. If we were following the catch-and-release technique, the ranger said to fish in the morning or evenings, due to the warm water temperatures and lower water levels stressing the fish. An invasive species permit was not required for floating on the river, which other states in the region require. Instead, the ranger asked us to inspect, clean, and dry our boats at the take-out to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species. The water level was slightly below the recommended 250 cubic feet-per-second (cfs) lower limit for floating rafts on the day we put in early July. Each boat captain had to occasionally get out and push their raft, cataraft, or inflatable kayak through the shallows. Campsites had pit toilets, except Deep Creek Camp, thus we did not need to bring our own packout system for human wastes. Surprisingly, the one-walled pit toilets on their concealed perches provided pleasing views of the canyons, revealed during each visit. Fire pits and grills were provided at each designated boat camp, so we left behind our fire pans. There are no reliable fresh water sources at the Camp Baker put in, nor downstream. Water from


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

Indian Springs at mile six and at a PVC pipe below Lower Bear Gulch below mile 29 could be used at our own risk. We filled water jugs at home and in the town of White Sulphur Springs. As a backup, we carried a water purification system to filter river water. If you want to experience the Smith River but lack the watercraft or camping gear, consider signing on with one of the authorized outfitters. Either way, a trip down the Smith River produces pleasant memories and deepened friendships. Further information: • Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks - Great Falls Office 406-454-5840 Camp Baker ranger during peak season 406-547-3893

fwp.mt.gov/recreation/activities/boating/smithRiver/default.html. Permit Process: The lottery is open the first week of January through mid-February. Fill out an online application and pay the non-refundable $10 fee. Lottery winners are notified in late February. Call after mid-March for remaining dates or cancellations. Group size is limited to 15 people. During May 15 through July 15, camping below the put in at Camp Baker is limited to a maximum of four nights. Smith River Water Flow Data at US Geological Survey website: waterdata.usgs.gov/mt/nwis/ uv?site_no=06077200. Amy’s Think Wild Shuttle Service: White

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 35

Sulphur Springs 406-547-2215. A shuttle along a short rough route is available for $110 per vehicle. A longer smoother route for $130. Authorized Smith River Outfitters: fwp.mt.gov/ recreation/activities/boating/smithRiver/outfitters. html. Natalie Bartley is a Boise-based author of the mobile app travel guide Boise’s Best Outdoor Adventures available at sutromedia.com/boise, and the trail guidebooks Best Easy Day Hikes Boise and Best Rail Trails Pacific Northwest available at amazon.com or your local outdoor retailer or bookstore. ISI

Virginia City – The old and the new Article & Photo By Jack McNeel streets. And it’s bigger than I expected. The main street The road twists and turns, climbing steadily through is “C” street, along which most of the businesses are juniper and pine. The multi-storied casinos and hotels of located. It runs for several blocks, the buildings dating Reno fall away from sight as the bus inches ever closer to the 1860s and ‘70s. Some names I recognize, from to the summit. We finally top out at nearly 6,800 feet, a books or movies – The Bucket of Blood Saloon and the 2,200-foot rise from Reno in Silver Queen Casino Hotel just nine miles, and then start for example, which date from the descent on the other side. It 1876. is not far, and we only descend I go from store to store, about 600 feet when, suddenly, reading and reminiscing. A the town is before us – Virginia person could spend hours, City, Nevada. days even, just wandering I have criss-crossed the through the town. It was 1863 West many times over many when a young writer by the years, but this is my first sight name of Samuel Clemons, of the famed Virginia City. I’m working for the local newsa little surprised at what I’m paper, first penned the name seeing. I have visited many Mark Twain, author of Huckearly mining towns – from leberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. Locall volunteers L l t add dd to t the th intrigue i ti and d photo h t opportunit i virtually nonexistent to others ties by dressing in 1800s attire and parading through town. Deke Di Marzo is among that have managed to hold on the numerous volunteers who tenaciously. A few have even become substantial towns dress in period clothing and parade through town, graof modern buildings. Virginia City still has that late 1800s ciously posing for photographs at one of the local waterlook with wooden sidewalks, old bars, and mercantile ing holes or next to an intriguing sign. Deke is dressed as buildings, much like it looked over 100 years ago – but it Eugene Blair, a Wells Fargo guard back in the early days is busy with tour busses and tourists strolling along the of “Old Virginny Town” as it was (Cont’d on page 41)

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OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

It Is Medicare Open Enrollment And Time To Get Your Ducks In A Row As practice makes perfect, I cannot but make progress; each drawing one makes, each study one paints, is a step forward. - Vincent van Gough

By Teresa Ambord From October 15 through December 7 – people on Medicare will have the opportunity to decide whether their current Medicare plans are meeting their needs. If you are currently enrolled in Medicare Advantage (also known as Medicare Part C), or a Part D prescription drug plan, this is your chance to look around and see if you can do better. Take some time to reconsider the plan you’ve chosen and you may be able to improve your benefits, or lower your premiums, or both. Or perhaps you just need to tweak your plan to suit your current medical needs. Also during this period, individuals who are already Medicare eligible but not enrolled

in Medicare Advantage can sign up in a new plan. And those who are participating in a Medicare Advantage or a Medicare Part D plan can cancel during this period. What if you miss your annual window of opportunity to make changes? You will need to wait until next year. So let this be a strong reminder, don’t miss this opportunity. Assuming you are happy with your current plan, why should you change or consider changing? Because other things change, including your health care needs, your prescriptions, the benefit options, your geographic location, and possibly the premiums charged by insurers. It is natural to be leery of change, especially if you have not been unhappy with your plan as it is. But this is an opportunity to gain control over high health costs, possibly improve what you are getting, and tweak your plan to meet your personal medical needs. Here is a list from Medicare.gov of actions you

Advantage, You. Get Medicare Advantage from Blue Cross of Idaho by Dec. 7th! Original Medicare has gaps in coverage and no cap on out-of-pocket expenses. Let our Medicare Advantage experts help you make the right choice to protect your health and your savings. Contact us today for your FREE Information Kit, with no obligation. Don’t delay. Medicare Advantage enrollment ends December 7th! CALL 1-888-492-2583, daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (TTY 1-800-377-1363 for the hearing impaired) VISIT IN PERSON Stop by, we’d love to talk with you. Visit www.bcidaho.com/medicare to find an office near you. ONLINE Visit www.bcidaho.com/medicare

We look forward to serving you! Blue Cross of Idaho is a health plan with a Medicare contract. We are available 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at 1-888-494-2583 (TTY 1-800-377-1363 for the hearing impaired). Blue Cross of Idaho is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Y0010_MK13057 Accepted 08262012


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

can take during Open Enrollment: • You can join a Medicare Prescription drug plan. • You may wish to drop Medicare prescription drug coverage completely. • You may switch from one prescription drug plan to another, within the Medicare plans. • You may switch from original Medicare to Medicare Advantage, or vice versa, from Medicare Advantage to original Medicare. • You may switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another Medicare Advantage plan. • If you are in a Medicare Advantage plan that does not have drug coverage, you may switch to one that does. Confused About How to Decide? First, do not assume nothing has changed. Competition in the health care field may have forced insurers to rethink what they offer. You can get advice from an insurance agent who is a licensed insurance broker specializing in Medicare. Just be sure that the agent is not tied to a particular

company, so that he or she has a more objective, broader spectrum of options for you. Friends and family may be able to help. But remember, what works for someone else’s health needs may not work for yours. You can do some research on your own by logging onto Medicare.gov, or talking to someone at 800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048. However you make your decision, here are some points to compare: • Monthly premiums • Out of pocket expenses • All deductibles • Copayments • Coinsurance Also consider how your health care needs may have changed since you last chose a plan. • How frequently do you see your doctors? • What ongoing prescriptions do you take that may be new?

Paying for Nursing Home Care with Medicaid The rules and requirements for Medicaid eligibility for nursing home care are somewhat complicated and will vary according to the state in which you live. With that said, here is a general, simplified rundown of what it takes to qualify, along with some resources you can turn to for help. Medicaid Rules – Medicaid, the federal and state joint program that covers health care for the poor, is also the largest single payer of America’s nursing home bills for people who do not have the resources to pay for their own care. Most people who enter nursing homes do not qualify for Medicaid at first, but pay for care either through long-term care insurance or out-of-pocket until they deplete their savings and become eligible for Medicaid. To qualify for Medicaid, your income and assets will need to be under a certain level that is determined by your state. Most states require that a person have no more than about $2,000 in countable assets that include cash, savings, investments, or other financial resources that can be turned into cash. Assets that are not counted for eligibility include your home if it is valued under $525,000 (this limit is higher – up to $786,000 – in some states), your personal possessions and household goods, one vehicle, prepaid funeral plans, and a small amount of life insurance. But be aware that while your home is not considered a countable asset to determine your eligibility, if you cannot return to your home, Medicaid can go after the proceeds of your house to help reimburse your nursing home costs, unless your spouse or other dependent relative lives there. (There are some other exceptions to this rule.) After qualifying, all sources of your income such as Social Security and pension checks must be turned over to

Medicaid to pay for your care, except for a small personal needs allowance – usually between $30 and $90 per month. You also need to be aware that you cannot give away your assets to qualify for Medicaid faster. Medicaid officials will look at your financial records going back five years to root out suspicious asset transfers. If they find one, your Medicaid coverage will be delayed a certain length of time,

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 37

• Has your current plan notified you of any upcoming changes that affect you adversely? It may seem daunting, but reviewing your Medicare situation now is absolutely essential and will bring you appropriate health care for your circumstances and peace of mind. ISI

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according to a formula that divides the transfer amount by the average monthly cost of nursing home care in your state. So if, for example, you live in a state where the average monthly nursing home cost is $5,000 and you gave away cash or other assets worth $100,000, you would be ineligible for benefits for 20 months ($100,000 divided by $5,000 = 20). Spousal Protection – Medicaid also has special rules for married couples when one spouse enters a nursing home and the other spouse remains at home. In these cases, the healthy spouse can keep one-half of the couple’s assets up to $113,640 (this amount varies by state), the family home, all the furniture and household goods, and one automobile. The healthy spouse is also entitled to keep a portion of the couple’s monthly income – between $1,838 and $2,841. Any income above that goes toward the cost of the nursing home recipient’s care.

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

What about Medicare? Medicare, the federal health insurance program for people 65 and older and some younger people with disabilities, does not pay for long-term care. It only helps pay up to 100 days of “rehabilitative” nursing home care, which must occur after a hospital stay. Get Help – Again, Medicaid rules are complicated and vary by state, so contact the local Medicaid office (call 800-633-4227 for contact information) for eligibility details. You can also get help from your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), which provides free counseling on all Medicare and Medicaid issues. To find a local SHIP counselor, visit shiptalk.org, or call 800-677-1116. Send your senior questions to Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior book. ISI


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 39

Ron Ouren, Still Hitting the Fast Ball

Articlde A i ld & Ph Photo B By J Jack kM McNeel N l Ron Ouren has enjoyed a very successful banking career in Coeur d’Alene, a career that continues as he passes his 70th birthday. He is widely known for his civic involvement as well, yet his real love probably remains with baseball – which he continues to play. That love of sports, and particularly baseball, dates back to his teenage years in Williston and Tioga, North Dakota. “I was probably a good all-around player,” he says, and he played them all – football, basketball, baseball, and track. “Baseball was probably where I had the most talent.” He spent two years at the University of North Dakota then decided to give pro baseball a shot and spent four months in Florida working with four or five major league teams. The coaches had him pegged for reaching the majors in three years, but at 19, that was not appealing to him. “They didn’t make much money at that time. I actually made more money working construction,” he relates. A chance to play ball in Quebec came along at a level similar to AA professional baseball today. He played a year and proved to himself he could play at that level. He returned to Williston and played some amateur ball. “Probably, my claim to fame there was I almost hit a home run off Satchel Paige by about five feet,” he laughed. “That would have been quite a thrill. Of course, Satchel was probably 60-65 years old, but he could still throw the ball pretty well.” He married his wife, Karen, and decided baseball was not the way to go. In 1967, they moved to Coeur d’Alene, where Ron got into banking. “Probably the best thing that ever happened to me,” he explains. “Forty five years later, I’m still here.” He is now with Community First Bank, as Senior Vice President and Branch Manager. During those years after moving to Idaho, Ron played slow pitch softball for 12-15 years, “for probably one of the top four or five teams in the northwest. We traveled, met a lot of people, and played about 100 games a year. That was fun .” But baseball was still in the back of his mind. He kidded his wife about wanting to go to a oneweek Fantasy Baseball Camp. “The Dodgers had the best one in Vera Beach,” Ron says. “She surprised me and got me this trip – a big ticket item.” He went to Vera Beach in 1992, not knowing anyone, along with 100-125 others. Former major leaguers were also there, including Ralph Branca, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Tommy Lasorda, Steve Garvey, and others – names that long-time baseball fans will remember. “I dressed next to Duke. My locker was next to him and Ralph Branca,” Ron recalls with a smile.

“I was never a star-struck type person. I really got to know them as people. They were all great guys,” he says. “The biggest part, they have a game. We played the Dodgers, the Garveys, and all those guys. Burt Hooton was pitching when I went up to hit and hit a ground rule double off him. He wrote on my ball, ‘You were lucky,’” Ron says with a laugh. He was 50 at that time. In 1998, he returned to Vera Beach and Fantasy Baseball Camp again. His memories of those trips are all good – the facilities, the chance to play baseball at a high level, and particularly the people he met, not only former major league players but the many others like himself who took the opportunity to fulfill a dream. One of those was another player who ran Dodger Town West, a group of men who had been to Dodger Camp and get together to play every week in the Los Angeles area. They called Ron and asked if he would join them. They also play in a World Series in Phoenix every year, and the team involved men from all over the U.S. Most of them play the year around, but for Ron, it’s just a week in the fall. There are different brackets based on age. This October, Ron will again play, but for the first time will be in the 70-and-over bracket. He has done this yearly since 1998, “except one year when I took my wife to Hawaii,” he says. “We play at all the major league spring training facilities,” Ron said. “I have played at all the stadiums in Phoenix, except for Giant Stadium. There’s nobody in the stands, but you’re still running the same grounds the major leaguers do. It’s fantastic.” One thing has changed slightly over the years. “Until a few years ago, you thought it was all about baseball. We’ve really bonded and created a great friendship. Now it’s more about the friendship, but we still are shooting for that World Series ring. Hopefully this is the year. “I feel very fortunate, very blessed, that my wife sent me. I’ll never forget the first times in the batting cage at Vera Beach, listening to that wood bat – that’s really special – and getting to know the major leaguers as human beings and some of the things they shared. It’s just been a wonderful experience.” Ron continues to put on the glove and swing the bat. While his physical condition belies his age, his interest in baseball goes beyond playing, and now he is working to give young people this opportunity. Ron is chair of a group trying to find funding and construct a sports complex in Coeur d’Alene to serve as home for a West Coast collegiate baseball team in addition to providing a facility that can be used for many other teams and many other purposes. It is referred to as the Field of Dreams

Sports Complex. Don Larson, the only pitcher to throw a perfect game in the World Series, is the honorary chair. His involvement in this idea goes back about 30 years but is now nearing fruition. Land has been selected to house a baseball park, but one with field turf, so it can be used throughout the year and host such sports as soccer, softball, lacrosse, and baseball, but can also be used for non-athletic events. Eight hundred-fifty permanent seats are planned, but the facility would handle up to 1,500. “We’ve landed a West Coast collegiate team, subject to city council approving it. They will be the primary tenant and play about 30 games,” Ron explains. “It’s probably the top collegiate summer program in the U.S., with 16 teams from California, Washington, Canada, and Idaho. Average draw is expected to be 800-1,200 fans per game” It should have positive effects on local youngsters as well. “We have some really great little league kids coming up,” Ron comments. “These kids will interact with the collegiate players. That will be their major league idols.” Ron also sees the strong probability that this facility, along with a new American Legion diamond recently built and two high school baseball fields, will allow Coeur d’Alene to host some major tournaments: state, regional, and even national. The immediate need is to raise $2.7 million. Ron has a committee actively approaching companies and individuals to raise the funds. His strong commitment to baseball, banking, and Coeur d’Alene makes him the ideal chair. So if you love baseball and Coeur d’Alene, make a donation! ISI


PAGE 40 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

Transmissions – More Gears Are Better By Bill Siuru Remember when cars came with three-speed manual transmissions and automatics had only two or three gear ratios? Back then if you wanted maximum fuel economy, you opted for “three on a tree,” a three-speed manual with the gear selector attached to the steering column. Automatic transmissions, often called “slush boxes” because of their poorer efficiency, did make driving easier, but got noticeably fewer miles per gallon. How things have changed. Today, five-speed manuals are the norm and some high performance cars have six speeds. Automatics have at least four – or as many as ten – speeds. Eight-speeds are already available in several BMW, Audi, Lexus, and Chrysler models. A nine-speed could first be used in an upcoming Chrysler model. Hyundai is now developing a ten-speed automatic. Along with advanced engines and slick aerodynamics, high-tech transmissions are also playing a big role in achieving better fuel economy. Engines produce the greatest horsepower and torque while consuming the least amount of fuel when running in a relatively narrow engine speed range – that is rpm (revolutions-per-minute). Having more gear ratios in a transmission results in a greater ability to operate an engine within this optimum, narrow speed range. That is why big trucks have up to 18-speed transmissions. How much does adding more gear ratios increase mpgs? Transmission manufacturer ZF says an eight-speed automatic transmission can improve fuel economy 21 to 24 percent over a three-speed automatic. This is in addition to mpg increases resulting from improvements in engine design. An eight-speed provides an 11-percent saving compared to a six-speed transmission and 14-percent versus a five-speed. Five- and six-speed transmissions are common in today’s cars, SUVs, and light trucks. Gone are the days that when you wanted the most mpgs, you ordered a manual transmission. Today, EPA highway and city mileage ratings for many vehicles are identical whether equipped with an automatic or manual transmission. Automatics can even do better in many instances. Computerized, electronically controlled transmissions can shift through the gears more effectively than all but the most accomplished driver shifts and do it with imperceptible gear changes. Besides achieving better fuel economy, engines do not have to work as hard so they will last longer and require less maintenance because there is less stress and wear. When engines run at lower rpms at high cruising speeds, they are quieter. Could we see ever more gear ratios in transmissions? Some experts say we may be reaching a point of diminishing returns because internal friction and energy losses can cancel out improvements made in efficiency. However, cars, especially hybrids, are already using continuously variable transmissions, or CVTs, that have essentially an infinite number of gear ratios. These really are the modern version of the shiftless transmission used in the Cushman motor scooter you might have owned as a kid. Because of current torque transmission limits, the use of CVTs has been limited pretty much to vehicles with relatively low power engines. Finally, electric vehicles can get by quite nicely with a single-speed transmission. This is because electric motors produce the same constant peak torque from zero to maximum rpm. This also gives EVs outstanding low speed acceleration. ISI


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT PAGE 41

Virginia City – continued from page 35 once called. Blair rode shotgun on the stages to guard the ore or prisoners that might need transporting elsewhere and developed a reputation for being quick to shoot, should the need arise. These volunteers add a nice touch in helping bring the old West alive. You can tour the town in an open trailer pulled by a tractor and get an excellent historical account of Virginia City from the driver. Another option is to ride in a carriage pulled by a horse driven by a woman dressed in late 1800s attire – or you can simply explore on your own.

Virginia City once had nearly 30,000 residents, newspapers, five police precincts, numerous fraternal groups, and the West’s first “rising room,” what we call an elevator today. And it also had opium dens, many bars, and a thriving red light district. Today the population numbers about 1,000. An interesting option is the one-and-a-half-hour ride (one way) on the old steam-powered Virginia & Truckee Railroad cars that run from Carson City to Virginia City. You choose whether to ride one way or round trip, depending on your desires and schedule. I take the train down to Carson City, and

then bus back to Reno. It’s an interesting ride, taking you through a 566-foot tunnel, past American Flat, where a town once stood that nearly became Nevada’s capital. The attractive scenery throughout makes it all the more enjoyable on this day, as well as when we see three different small groups of wild horses. So, on your next trip to Reno, give serious thought to spending a day exploring the early western history that makes the region so intriguing. A trip to Virginia City might just be the highlight of your entire vacation. ISI

King Tut: Treasures of the Tomb Ten years in the making, from the artisans of the Pharaonic Village in Giza, Egypt and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, this dazzling collection of Tutankhamen’s (King Tut) legendary treasures recreates the richest archaeological find of all time. With an expansive scope of over 131 artifacts masterfully produced in Egypt, this blockbuster exhibition is larger and more complete than any previous exhibition of the originals. Displayed in open glass cases, the exhibition includes replicas of the pharaoh’s sacred and personal possessions along with associated artifacts from the period surrounding Tutankhamen’s reign. Reconstructing both the historic discovery of the tomb by Howard Carter and the life and times of Egypt’s most celebrated boy-king, this exhibition takes visitors on a journey they will never forget. Discovery of the Tomb – 33 centuries ago a young pharaoh worshiped as a god was laid to rest in eternal splendor – his rule mysteriously cut short by an infected injury. An innocent puppet-ruler, he had been caught in the midst of a dangerous and profound political, spiritual, and artistic revolution against the entire pantheon of ancient Egyptian gods by the first monotheistic religious cult in history. Hidden in darkness beneath the desert sand for over three millennia, his spectacular golden treasures were discovered by Howard Carter in 1922. After the discovery, these treasures fulfilled their ancient magical task of ensuring that the name of Tutankhamun – the longforgotten boy pharaoh – would live on forever. From 1961 to 1981, the original traveling Tutankhamun exhibition from the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, toured the United States, Canada, Japan, France, England, West Germany, and the Soviet Union. Curated by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the exhibition presented 55 artifacts in the order in which they were removed from the tomb, each grouped according to the chambers in which they were found. After 20 years of wear-and-tear on the priceless objects, the tour was concluded and the returned to Egypt. Exhibition Explanation – Since all pharaohs were buried with more or less the same sacred equipment, even Tutankhamun’s own treasures were replicas in their day. Crafted from the same ancient traditional designs, the riches in King Tut: Treasures’ of the Tomb collection are presented as a composite portrait of an ancient individual and the remote times in which he lived. Instead of traditionally focusing on the chambers of the tomb, the artifacts are grouped according to aspects of the pharaoh’s life: an Introductory Hall, the Hall of the Discovery, the Private Pharaoh, the Public Pharaoh, and the Sacred Burial. The pharaoh’s much-overlooked African heritage is explored along with the religious magical nature of his sacred objects and the infamous curse of Tutankhamun. In addition to the replicas made in Egypt, this exhibit also features an authentic 18th Dynasty sandstone stela, bearing a superb relief of Akhenaten, and three genuine 26th Dynasty gold and faience funerary necklaces. While the experience of seeing the original artifacts is unsurpassable, there are enormous benefits to viewing these reproductions. The sheer number of replicas far exceeds the number of original objects that were allowed to leave the Egyptian Museum for viewing abroad. For those who have stood in long lines and paid lofty admissions to see the originals, it affords an opportunity to see far more of the pharaoh’s treasures than were available in the other touring exhibitions and at a more accessible price for families and schools. “The objects are all cast to look like the real thing . . . with the flaws and all,” said Marty Martin, curator from The Origins Museum Institute, where the exhibit originally was put together. “People can really experience them [the pieces] and they can actually breathe and live within the exhibit.” The collection of legendary artifacts faithfully preserves the grandeur and mystery of the most astonishing archaeological treasure ever discovered. General Information – King Tut: Treasures of the Tomb is open through Nov. 24, 2012. Admission prices are $8/adult, $7/senior, $6/student, $25/ family, and $20/family on Family Night (Mon 5-8

pm). Hours are Mon & Tues from 9 am – 8 pm, Wed – Sat 9 am – 5 pm, and closed Sunday. For more information, visit museumofidaho.org or please contact Britni Storer, Director of Marketing at 208-522-1400 ext. 3004 or at britnistorer@ museumofidaho.org. ISI


PAGE 42 IDAHO SENIOR INDEPENDENT

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2012

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Get the most out of Medicare with SelectHealth AdvantageSM (HMO-POS). $5 copay for primary care provider visits $20/month toward a ďŹ tness membership of your choice or an approved weight loss program Comprehensive prescription drug coverage Top-ranked customer service Because we are so closely aligned with St. Lukeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, you can enjoy an exceptional level of care and value.

Attend our FREE SEMINAR in your area. Call to RSVP:

Toll-Free 855-442-9900 TTY: 711

selecthealthadvantage.org

Customer Service Hours (October 1 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; February 14) weekdays, from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., and weekends, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

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Idaho Senior Independent