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Butte’s Lou Parrett Builds Birdhouses with Style Article and photos by Craig & Liz Larcom You may have seen the birdhouses bursting with personality that lined the shelves at Lou Parrett’s booth at the National Folk Festival in Butte a couple of years ago. Take the eye-catching one with a face that is dominated by a white doorknob nose and a pair of rosy sunglasses. The tongue from an old shoe

hangs out of its mouth, and together with four wooden snaggleteeth, gives the character a seedy cast. Curling strands of moss form green hair, sideburns, and perhaps that is scum at the top of the tongue. Look closer yet and you see that the box itself and the tall roof are composed of weathered wood. A fragment of a decaying tree trunk, carefully placed so that its own larger knothole frames the box’s nesting hole, gives the face a 3-D effect by making cheeks for the face. Welcome to the creative world of Lou Parrett, maker of approximately 2,500 birdhouses in the past 12 or 13 years. Recycled materials and whimsical designs are the hallmark of this 61-year-old from Butte, who retired from teaching elementary school at the ripe of old age of 46, and discovered his unusual hobby about three years later. This man does not think inside the box. A barn-shaped birdhouse with shedding paint in some

shade between pink and red bears the inscription “Barn to be wild,” accented with tiny musical notes. In addition to double doors and a couple windows outlined with bits of wood, 40 pebbles decorate the bottom part of the barn’s wall. Beside it, a house with what appears to be a tyrannosaurus head, capitalizes on an oddly shaped piece of wood that includes a knothole. Nearby a birdhouse decorated with an old table fork sits cradled by a pair of fork horn deer antlers. The varied houses he displays clearly delight the shoppers, though Parrett says he also gets his share of looks that say, “You’ve got to be out of your head.” He shrugs these off. He is having far too much fun to mind. Almost all the birdhouses can be described as rustic folk art, with a few more falling into the shabby chic category. These few use doorknobs, faucets, or other hardware gizmos. Parrett often adds a neatly lettered, comic phrase to either kind of box. The sign on a birdhouse designed with boot parts might say, “Made in Boot, Montana,” for example. Half the fun of building these is looking for the components. He scours the countryside looking for natural materials. “The most popular (Continued on page 71)


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MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 3

T H E P I T FA L L S O F ASSISTED SUICIDE If the idea of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) makes you feel nervous, there is good reason for that. 1.

MANY OTHERS AGREE WITH YOU. • From 1991 thru 2009, 113 legislative proposals and 4 ballot initiatives to legalize PAS have been defeated in 24 states.1 Only Oregon and Washington have legalized PAS. • In 2010, the New Hampshire legislature defeated PAS by an almost 70% vote margin; nearly 80% of Canadian voters rejected it; and a lawsuit in Connecticut seeking to promote “aid in dying” (a euphemism for assisted suicide) was dismissed by the court.2

2.

THE ELDERLY WILL BE PUT IN HARM’S WAY. • Elder abuse by family members and/or caretakers is a serious and growing problem in Montana, as it is throughout the nation.3 • There is nothing to prevent an heir, an angry adult child or an exasperated caretaker from putting pressure on a vulnerable elder to do the “altruistic” thing and end his/her life, to “free up resources” and “lift burdens” from others. • Once the lethal dose is issued to the patient, there is no oversight at the time of death. If the patient changes his/her mind, someone else could administer the dose against his/her will anyway (homicide) and no one would know the difference. • The Oregon Health Plan (government health care) has refused to fund treatment in some cases but has offered to fund other end-of-life options, including PAS. Some cancer treatments can cost $4,000+/month. PAS costs $50-$100 — a one-time cost.4

3.

ASSISTED SUICIDE IS A GATEWAY TO EUTHANASIA. • Over the past two decades, the Netherlands has progressed from assisted suicide to euthanasia for the terminally ill, to euthanasia for the chronically ill, to euthanasia for physical illness, to euthanasia for psychological distress; and from voluntary euthanasia to patients being killed by their doctors without their consent.5 Respect for the dignity of the human person has been markedly eroded there. • A suicide/euthanasia promotion group, Exit International, set up offices in Washington state after PAS was legalized in that state in 2008.6 This group exists to show people how to kill themselves. They conduct seminars on how people can obtain lethal drugs from foreign countries. They also teach step by step how they can “deliver” themselves by using helium and plastic tubing, and putting a plastic bag put over their head.

Assisted suicide is NOT good for Montana! ELECT legislative candidates this fall who know that. Then ask them to SUPPORT legislation introduced in Montana’s 2011 Legislative Session to ban assisted suicide in Montana and keep us safe from the pitfalls! _______________________ 1 Hinkle, Senator Greg, “Report to the Senate for the State of Montana,” LC 0041, Montana Patient Protection Act, 2009. 2 Montana Catholic Conference E-Mail Newsletter, June 14, 2010. 3 Great Falls Tribune, Opinion Section, June 10, 2009. 4 ABC News Online, “Death Drugs Cause Uproar in Oregon,” August 6, 2008: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=5517492&page=1 5 Hendin, M.D., Herbert, “Summary for Congressional Subcommittee on the Constitution, Suicide, Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia: Lessons From the Dutch Experience,” Compassionate Healthcare Network Website: http://www.chninternational.com/dutch_and_scots.htm#Lessons%20From%20the%20Dutch%20Experience%20Herbert%20Hendin,%20M.D. 6 The Missoulian Online, “Legalization of assisted suicide brought ‘Dr. Death’,” Elenor K. Schoen, July 8, 2010: http://missoulian.com/news/opinion/mailbag/article_ 2cd65f76-8912-11df-96e1-001cc4c002e0.html

_________________________________________________ PA I D A D V E R T I S E M E N T b y C o n c e r n e d C i t i z e n s


PAGE 4 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

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Montana Senior News A Barrett-Whitman Publication

P.O. Box 3363 • Great Falls, MT 59403-3363 406-761-0305 or 800-672-8477 FAX 406-761-8358 www.montanaseniornews.com email: montsrnews@bresnan.net The Montana Senior News is published six times each year in February, April, June, August, October and December at 415 3rd Avenue North, Great Falls, MT 59401 and is distributed free to readers throughout the state of Montana. The mail subscription rate is $8.00 per year (6 issues). The Montana Senior News is written to serve the reading interests of mature Montanans 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 Montana Senior News 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.

Jack W. Love, Jr., Publisher/Editor Colleen Paduano Kathleen McGregor Rhonda Lee Peter Thornburg Sherrie Smith

Production Supervisor Advertising Sales Advertising Sales Graphic Artist Distribution Admin/Production Assistant

Contributing Writers Bob Campbell Connie Daugherty George Engler Clare Hafferman Sue Hart Kim Thielman-Ibes Gail Jokerst Bernice Karnop Craig Larcom Liz Larcom Michael McGough Dianna Troyer © 2010

Authorless Opinion I was appalled to open the most recent issue of Montana Senior News to find on page 3 an opinion with no name attached. No reputable publication will publish an opinion without someone taking responsibility for it. Shame on you! Jean Bowman Missoula ED: Page 3 of the June/July 2010 issue was a paid advertisement that we failed to label as such. We apologize for any confusion.

Physician Assisted Suicide - Who Chooses? An ad that appeared in your June/July issue on page 3 made some pretty wild claims about physician aid in dying. Here are the facts. Our Montana Supreme Court ruled last year that end-of-life choices are between patient and doctor. Their decision allows a terminally ill, mentally competent adult to ask their physician for a prescription. If they find their dying process unbearable the patient can take the medicine themselves to achieve a peaceful death. People in this state believe that we know how to take care of ourselves without government interference. We trust our doctors to give us the best possible medical advice. In Oregon, where aid in dying has been legal for more than a decade, careful records show aid in dying is a safe medical practice. None of the problems predicted by opponents has come true

in all that time. Not everyone will choose aid in dying. Some doctors won’t want to offer this treatment to their terminally ill patients. Naturally, the court decision doesn’t require, encourage, or coerce anyone to take part. It just says we have the choice. It’s my life. It’s going to be my death. It should be my choice. Doris Fischer Sheridan I saw in your June/July issue ads presenting both sides of the physician-assisted suicide argument. I’d like to make some observations regarding this issue. Contrary to what Compassion and Choices would have us believe, a physician can still be prosecuted in Montana for assisting in a patient’s suicide. The recent Montana Supreme Court decision merely gives physicians a potential defense. I have proposed The Montana Patient Protection Act, which would overrule that decision to eliminate the defense and return our law to its prior status in which assisted suicide was clearly prohibited. The vast majority of states to consider legalizing assisted suicide have rejected it. The most recent states to reject it are Connecticut and New Hampshire. Only two states allow it. Assisted suicide, regardless, provides a path to elder abuse and steers citizens to take their own lives. In addition, it ultimately gives control over one’s life to another, thus, the “choice” is gone. These results are contrary to our state’s


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

public policies designed to value all of our citizens regardless of age. Senator Greg Hinkle Thompson Falls

More Sons and Daughters of Montana Pioneers We really enjoy your publication the Montana Senior News. In the latest issue, there was a story on Sons and Daughters of Montana Pioneers. Since I do not have a computer or know how to use one, I’d like to ask how to obtain information on this interesting organization. My grandfather, W. J. Alexander, and his first wife, Ellen Young, came to Montana in about 1865 and settled in Butte where my grandfather was involved in mining and the grocery business. Two brothers of Martha Ellen also came to Montana and built a resort in Potosi Canyon near Pony, Montana. Laura Young owned this property until recently, but I do not have the exact date. In 1879, S. C. Blackiston, my great-grandfather, held services in Fort Benton, and he then went to Butte to St. John’s Church for 29 years. Montana history is very interesting to me. If you know whom to contact, I would greatly appreciate hearing from them. I am 80 at this time and dearly

enjoying Montana. Thank you a lot. Patricia Salomon Polson ED: Readers interested in more information about the Sons and Daughters of Montana Pioneers can write to Mary Lou Garrett, P.O. Box 2035, Helena, MT 59624, or call Shirley Herrin at 406-442-8858.

Ten Trillion Dollars I read with interest about the 4th Annual Montana HealthCare Forum Conference held in Helena recently. I did not read much about cost containment. Before the current bill was passed, the U.S. was on track to spend an additional ten trillion dollars over the next ten years on health care. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Office of the Actuary (CMS/OACT) has released its projections of U.S. health care spending for the 2010-2019 period with this law in place. For the additional ten trillion we

Patriotism, Climate Change and National Security By Michael Jarnevic Having recently celebrated Independence Day and the events that brought about the birth of our nation, let us continue to reflect upon the true meaning of patriotism and the responsibility that citizenship entails. The United States of America - and the planet - is facing an unprecedented crisis of a magnitude that would be unimaginable to the Founding Fathers. In the spirit that brought us the Declaration of Independence, we must, as a nation, declare our independence from those sources of energy that will destroy us in the end. I say this not only in regard to the use of finite resources like oil and coal, but also from the effects of this dirty energy addiction on U.S. national security, including international terrorism. According to a recent Department of Defensesponsored article co-authored by Commander Herbert E. Carmen, U.S. Navy, Christine Parthemore, and Will Rogers of the Center for New American Security, “analysts expect changes such as extreme drought, more frequent heat waves, desertification, flooding and extreme weather events. The combined impact of these effects will intertwine with existing political, social, cultural and economic trends, with significant implications for U.S. interests worldwide.� Thus, our government will be asked to intervene ever more frequently in places like the Middle East and Africa, or, most recently, the Gulf of Mexico, to mitigate the consequences of unbridled dirty energy usage. This means more expenditures, more deployments, and more casualties for the service men and women called upon to put boots on the ground for these global operations in defense of U.S. national interests. So, what can you as an American citizen do to curtail our dirty energy addiction and bring about

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should have everyone in the country covered with the most expensive Cadillac coverage available. As it is, there will be millions of Americans still not covered. Mike Thomas Helena

Enjoys Contest Corner I always look forward to the “Contest Corner�... fun! I’ve lived in Montana long enough to know the counties, but when I saw this contest I realized I had forgotten some of the counties by name... it was a great reminder. Keep the fun coming! Thanks!!! Lana Toren Columbia Falls MSN


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a more secure nation? For starters, you can press Congress - including Senators Baucus and Tester and Representative Rehberg - to pass a comprehensive energy bill that addresses the key elements of clean energy utilization and let them know that, as a patriot, you feel compelled to speak out in favor of legislation that takes the necessary steps to mitigate climate change and make our nation more secure. You can also vote – religiously - thereby becoming involved in the process that sees these changes through. Finally, you can start taking personal responsibility for your actions by

reassessing your own energy consumption practices and how they affect our nation. These are the hallmarks of a citizen who understands that what we do as individuals affects the nation as a whole and therefore acts accordingly. If you truly want to support the troops and the nation, be a true patriot and do that which benefits the greater good for our nation, and, ultimately, the planet as a whole. Michael Jarnevic is a Sergeant Major in the United States Army Reserve with 37 years of service. MSN

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One of the milestones of youth over the last one hundred years has been learning to drive. Whether that first car was a 2000 Chevy Malibu or a 1925 Model T Ford, no one can forget the thrill (and terror) of that first time out on the open roadâ&#x20AC;Ś and in traffic! Our winning Remember When contributor is Sylva Mularchyk of Santa Monica, California, whose recollection Learning to Drive reminds us of the trials and tribulations of youth, especially relating to that favorite American pastime â&#x20AC;&#x201C; driving a car. Thank you and congratulations to Sylva, the winner of our $25 Remember When prize. Remember When contains our readersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; personal reflections, contributions describing fictional or non-fictional accounts from the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Good olâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Days,â&#x20AC;? or reflections on life in general. Contributions may be stories, letters, artwork, poetry, etc. Photos may be included. Each issue of the Montana Senior News features the contributions 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 October/November 2010 issue. Mail your correspondence to Montana Senior News, P.O. Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403; email to montsrnews@bresnan.net; or call 1-800-672-8477 or 406-761-0305. Visit us online at www.montanaseniornews.com.

Learning To Drive By Sylva Mularchyk, Santa Monica, California I was twelve and a girl and should not have concerned myself with such masculine pursuits as driving a car â&#x20AC;&#x201C; but every time I looked at that little black Model T Ford, I was consumed with an urge to get in it and drive off. That little beauty beckoned me. But first I had to learn to drive. I could picture myself sitting behind that wheel, turning it casually left or right, and whipping along at speeds I could only dream about. My father had wearied of my pleadings. I was tired of begging, but without his permission that automobile would not budge. The most I could force my father to say was, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Sally, please. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re too young to drive â&#x20AC;&#x201C; besides, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re a girl.â&#x20AC;? I knew that maxim too well. It prefaced the answer to almost every request I made. F

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I knew my father was disappointed that my brother – younger than I – didn’t seem to want to drive. He was happy with his bicycle. Cars for him would come later – but not for me. I wanted to drive, NOW! Still, my father refused. I had often sat on my father’s lap, while he was driving, and steered the car. The fact that I didn’t know how to drive did not deter me. I guess I thought it would all come to me naturally when I got behind that wheel. We lived on the edge of the city by the railroad tracks. My father operated one of the four great grain elevators for which our town, Watford City, North Dakota, was famous. The yard outside our house had no fences and stretched into an empty lot that had been abandoned for years – long before our arrival. In that empty lot were the remains of a cellar over which a house had once stood. Through the years, winds had blown dirt and refuse into the cellar until it was partially filled. All of us had ignored it for so long we had virtually forgotten it. Certainly, I wasn’t thinking of it, nor was my father, the day he gave me permission to drive. He was standing in the yard talking with several neighbors and seemed to be in a very good mood. He knew what was coming when I approached him, and very casually he said, “All right, Sally. Go ahead. Get in the car and drive. I’ll crank it up.” After a few deft turns of the crank, the engine sputtered and purred. I climbed into the driver’s seat and looked down at him. “Aren’t you coming with me?” “No, thanks. We’re all going to watch you take your solo trip. Go right ahead.” He must have thought I would give up and climb back down. But with everyone watching me and the opportunity I had been begging for suddenly thrust upon me, I could not back down. I reached for the accelerator on the steering wheel and gave it a little gas. The car jumped into motion at once and we were off. Too fast! Frantically, I tried to slow it down, but I realized too late that I didn’t have the faintest idea what I was doing. I knew there was a brake, but I couldn’t find it! While feeling around and figuring out what the car was doing, I completely forgot to look where I was going – directly toward the cellar. As I tried desperately to turn right or left, the car swooped over a hump and came to a dead stop in the middle of the hole. All the men were running, some laughing, some in puzzlement, some in awe. My father opened the door and helped me out of the car. “Are you all right, Sally?” I said I was fine. All I wanted to do was get away – far away. My humiliation was complete. Somebody assured my father that the car was unharmed. My daddy began to laugh – so hard there were tears in his eyes. I knew he would never forget this shame I’d brought upon myself. But it was his fault, too, I thought. He should have taught me more. I swore to myself that I would never let a kid of mine try to drive a car without having some lessons first. But hadn’t I asked for it? I was a Libra – and don’t we always try to be fair and balanced? There was more to it, of course. Getting the car out of the cellar required the use of my saddle horse, Blaze, who was often called upon to do those rare jobs that few riding ponies are forced to do. But Blaze it was, with me urging him forward, who pulled that little Model T out of the hole. It was a few more years before I began to beg again for driving lessons. Of course, I did, but there were other pursuits to conquer. There was skating and sledding in the winter, swimming holes in the summer, games to play, and fun to be had. But someday, I would learn to drive a car. Yes, I would. MSN

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 7

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Messages From Afghanistan by Nancy Lachapelle; Xlibris Corporation, 2009 Reviewed by Connie Daugherty “I joined the United States Air Force in 1986… because I wanted to become a Nurse Midwife and the Air Force was training midwives at the time. My plan was to stay for a few years and then get on with my life,” writes Nancy Lachapelle. “Twenty years later I am a Nurse Midwife and the Air Force is my life.” Although Nancy has a family of her own in Montana, in the spring of 2007, she was “presented with an opportunity to deploy to Afghanistan as a Chief Nurse Mentor for the Afghan National Army Medical Corp.” The opportunity took her to “a small base in the mountains of Afghanistan.” Her book, Messages From Afghanistan, is a collection of Nancy’s emails and a friend’s blog entries that chronicle their experiences during their deployment. Messages From Afghanistan is presented in personal journal style beginning in July 2007 and ending in January 2008. Even the minor typos have been preserved so the reader can quickly become involved with the sense of email communication from far away. The emails tell the story of day-to-day life, of special events (both American & Afghani), and of people - Afghan medical personal, local and military patients, and other locals. Readers get a feel for what it is like to communicate routine and emergency information without a translator. Because of her name, one of the Afghan words she learned almost immediately was, “nan” (bread). In order to allow readers to understand better the local environment, Nancy has also included black and white photos and a glossary of Afghan terms.

She is quick to explain that, the book is meant to be one person’s perspective, and not, “a comprehensive study of Afghanistan, its people or the war on terror.” However, what we get in Messages From Afghanistan is much better than anything a formal study could provide. Nancy gives readers a sense of life for specific people in a specific place and time by putting names and faces to an otherwise impersonal, far-away world. She provides a means of association, comparison, and understanding, which was her mission to the Afghans. With her book, she has reversed the process by providing the same thing for American readers. Nancy was stationed near a remote mountain village at a small Afghan National Army base of “approximately 300 personnel including active duty military and civilian contractors.” These people formed a community of friends and colleagues. It is this community that we get to know through Nancy’s emails. Although Nancy and her Air Force colleagues were sent over as medical mentors and advisors, in many ways she learned as much as she was taught. She writes of the time spent interacting with the nurses and participating in their daily routines. “Several of the nurses speak some English so I can usually hold my own with them translating when I don’t have an interpreter. They still call me ‘the grandmother’ of the hospital and we all get our pictures taken together.” The importance - or lack - of cleanliness and hygiene was a constant in their lives. They quickly learned what battles to fight and when. Many of her entries include references to the “battle of the sheets.” With only one washing machine and one dryer (both apartment size), and a limited supply

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of soap, washing sheets is a process. Therefore, unlike in a typical American hospital, sheets are not changed daily or even when one patient is discharged and another is admitted. “[S]urgical bed sheets are… washed on Saturday and Tuesday and medical bed sheets… on Sunday and Wednesday.” However within the first month, Nancy learns that plan and practice are often not the same. One of her early entries includes a conversation that is both humorous and informative. In the end, the sheets are washed and Nancy dubs herself the “sheet witch.” She also introduces using a clothesline to dry the sheets to speed up the process. This is especially helpful since patients are left lying on beds without sheets while their sheets are being washed and dried. The day after this encounter Nancy feels somewhat redeemed when, during the morning report the Deputy Commander announces, “four things” that have improved since the American Team arrived a month before. Included in the four things is the fact that the sheets were washed on time the day before. During the next several weeks, Nancy’s messages continue to depict both triumphs and frustrations as she and the rest of the team try to introduce appropriate medical procedures to the local staff. She teaches English classes, which most of the staff really enjoy, and encourages a relationship of respect between the nurses and doctors by giving the nurses more responsibility. Small steps like sterile instruments and clean floors begin to make a difference. September 1, however, was one of those days when Nancy wondered if their efforts would really be lasting. Then she was reminded to, “remember the good stuff and don’t lose heart - tomorrow is another day,” The challenge of Ramadan was not so much the month of fasting that all of the local staff observe, it was the confusion about when Ramadan started. It all depended on whether or not the moon was visible the night before. After a false start a few days before, the official beginning for their crew was on September 13. Another opportunity to learn about the local culture. In October one of the local hospital staff didn’t show up for work because “the Taliban kidnapped his cousin and cut this throat and he needed to help his family” in Kabul. That same week suicide bombs exploded in Kabul. “It is so hard to fathom the life they lead,” wrote Nancy. “[T]hey deserve a better life. I’m

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 9

attaching some photos of the kids because they are the best reason for peace here.” Over the next few months, Nancy writes of the very sick children they treat at the hospital along with the usual military patients. She tells of the times they go out to the villages to treat local women and children - an especially worthwhile service since the women can only be treated by a woman doctor. She tells of her friendship with the “carpet man” and his family. She tells of snowball fights and making a snowman. She tells of the “immersion training” offered the staff and pharmacists at the bigger hospitals and how they bring that experience back to their small base to improve the hospital there. She talks of the new dining facility - a big improvement over the “room with a toilet, a kitchen sink with a dishwashing faucet on it,” where hospital staff ate and prepared trays for the patients. She tells of packages received from family and friends and even strangers. These packages from home generally include much needed supplies for the hospital and treats for all. She tells of being especially touched by a package from Monument School in Colorado, “filled with goodies and toiletries and letters from elementary kids.” The sincere, childish letters were the most touching. And she tells of leaving. “The goodbyes were sad but tempered by the knowledge that we will soon be seeing our families.” Although the mission that “grandma” Nancy accepted was “described… as an effort to win the war on terror by winning the ‘hearts and minds’ of the Afghan people,” it is obvious in Messages From Afghanistan that many of the Afghan people won the hearts and minds of Nancy and her team as well. MSN

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PAGE 10 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Growing Wild In The Garden By Clare Hafferman Going native in the garden took root with American gardeners when Lady Bird Johnson urged us to restore some of the natural landscape and beauty that was being lost. In 1982, she and actor Helen Hays formed the Wildlife Center at the University of Texas in Austin, which has become the country’s credible source of information on native plants. Lady Bird always said her memories of fields of Texas bluebonnets inspired her to want others to enjoy the sight of their own state’s flowers in their own gardens. When highway beautification projects, public parks, and backyard plantings began to catch on, the seed and shrub businesses entered the parade with a variety of boxes, sacks, and envelopes of individual or mixed wildflowers. What went slightly askew in the selection of seeds was the idea that the buyer only had to throw a handful out in the pasture or on a spot of dug up dirt, and next season see a field of flowers. After that myth passed, more companies, authors, and publishers took up the cause of providing real information on how to plant seeds, shrubs, trees, and grasses for native landscaping. If you have ever wanted a garden of wildflowers, either for their easy care and water requirements, their beauty in beholding, or the fact that they attract and benefit insects, bees, and butterflies, fall is the ideal time to plant them from seed. This is true because some seeds need a freeze and thaw cycle in order to germinate, and the fall rains keep them from drying out. Research what kinds of plants grow well in the zone where you live, and which are deer resistant. If you want faster results than seeding, some nurseries now offer plants not desired by Bambi. Wildflower seeds in general are offered in catalogues and at garden centers. Butterflies and bees that pollinate and come for nectar from wildflowers make good subjects for photography or sketches by an artist. They can be an outdoor science class for a grade school teacher and her students. Once you succeed, share your knowledge, and watch your thumb turn greener. Once you have picked a sunny spot for your efforts, dig up the soil and take out the weeds, grass, and bigger rocks. Those who

have done this say wildflowers do not need the addition of fertilizer of soil amendments unless you are gardening in sticky clay. Then break that up with some peat moss or compost. If you are creating a border, the rule still works to put taller plants - native Asters, Yarrow, Purple Coneflower, Horsemint, Black-Eyed Susan, and some of the taller grasses, to the back and edge the border with Pussytoes or similar low-growing creepers. Gardeners harassed by deer say that these hoofed vegetarians normally avoid Bleeding Heart plants and ferns. Other common wildflowers such as Gallardia, California Poppy, Larkspur, Silky Phacelia,(a bee favorite), Balsamroot, Coreopsis, Blue Flax, Rocky Mtn. Iris (a Lewis and Clark discovery), Purple Coneflower, and Sitka Columbine, (a red and yellow sipper that Hummingbirds favor), are all sun lovers and easy to grow from seed. If you are planting actual plants that need good drainage, check at a feed store for turkey or chicken grit. Dig a hole, put the grit in the bottom, ease the plant in, add dirt, and give it a drink. Along with blossoms, native grasses add a natural touch. More plant nurseries are selling these as attractive companions and seed companies offer varieties such as Big Bluestem, Little Bluestem, Switchgrass, Prairie Dropseed, and Fountain Grass, although this last has been overdone in spots. Wooden popsicle sticks and an indelible marker can serve as outdoor records of what was planted, and if something does not succeed, try again or substitute. Some seeds will lie dormant until conditions are right, and some seeds just take a long time to germinate. You may plant some, forget them, and in a couple of years, have a pleasant surprise looking up at you. Two examples of longevity in sprouting are Balsamroot and Rocky Mountain Iris. The little black seeds from the Iris will give you a green spear the first year and in four more years, you should see the light blue flowers that resemble the French fleur de lis. This plant will grow and spread and is one of the late spring flowers that blooms in May. Lewis and Clark catalogued Balsamroot, which Native Americans used for fishing lines made from the tough leaves and for dipping arrows into a poison made from the roots. Do not forget how big this hillside bloomer is and how small are its seeds. Balsamroot takes five years from seed to flower, but remember what you told your kids, “Patience is a virtue.” The following firms are good sources for seeds and information: • Seeds Trust, High Altitude Gardens, P.O. Box 596, Cornville, AZ 86325. • Western Native Seed, P.O. Box 188, Coaldale, CO 81222.


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

• The Fragrant Path, P.O. Box 328, Fort Calhoun, NE 68023. • Wildseed Farms, P.O. Box 3000, Fredericks-

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 11

burg, TX 78624-3000. This last catalogue has a map of the United States by each variety, which shows where each flower will grow. MSN

Are You Ready To Sell Your Home? By Judy Kivela, Kivela Real Estate, Butte In today’s real estate climate, you want to be sure to take all the steps to squeeze every possible penny out of the sale of your home. Small oversights or missteps can be costly when it comes to your bottom line. However, common mistakes are easily avoidable if you listen to the experience and advice of your real estate representative. One error that can cost you is to put your home on the market before it is truly ready for presentation. Image is everything, so get all the cleaning, painting, patching, and lawn care done well in advance of your first showing. Another costly obstacle involves your initial listing price. Remember that you control the ask-

ing price, but not the selling price - that is finally determined by the buyers and what the market will bear. Try to detach yourself emotionally from what you want to net, and price your home aggressively against your competition, right from the beginning. Emotional attachment can keep you from perceiving and presenting your home as what it now is, a commodity. Present it, market it, and price it as you would any new product on the market. Your agent will make sure it gets exposure to the right demographic, and will help you avoid costly errors along the way to a successful closing. MSN

Make Your Move Judy Kivela, Kivela Real Estate, Butte You know that it takes planning and preparation to sell your home and the same applies to making a purchase. But whether buying or selling, you will also have to put a lot of thought into Moving Day. After you have three in-home estimates from professional moving companies and have made your choice, start packing! By starting your packing well in advance, you are less likely to pack things you no longer need. Sort those items separately as you go, have a yard sale, or get receipts and deduct your donations. When it comes to packing materials, you can save both money and the environment by using paper, used towels, sheets, and other soft items to wrap your breakables and save space. Label each box by number and room, and keep an inventory of its contents. Save a couple “load last” boxes for easy access on moving day and your arrival (towels, sheets, toiletries, medications, etc.) When you do arrive, try not to be overwhelmed by all the piles of boxes. It is a lot more fun to unpack and rearrange in your new home than it is to load everything up. If you are properly organized, you can quickly get settled. Just work on one room at a time and be sure to start in the kitchen! MSN

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PAGE 12 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Holiday Bonus

REMINGTON

FUNERAL CHAPELS South Central Montana 406-672-0099

www.remingtonletcherfuneralservices.com

By Dr. Michael McGough It was a small, family-owned company that opened in 1895. The founders borrowed against everything they had to get it off the ground, and for the first ten years, it was touch and go. Twice they almost lost everything, but through hard work, long hours, and frugal management they not only survived, but they grew. They never wanted to be competitive with the national corporations. They were a family business, and they wanted to be supportive of the families of their employees. Through production bonuses, a solid retirement plan, good benefits, and other incentives, they were a company that took care of its employees. Generally, once you got a job with them, you stayed until you were old enough to retire. Over the last century, the company had gone through the same economic and social ups and downs as the rest of the country. Surviving them all, they came into the 21st century strong and financially solid. Their future looked bright. But as the first decade of the new century progressed, the economic turmoil began to wear away some of the century-old stability they had built. Adjustments had to be made, and business as usual was no longer the standing order of the day. One of the first changes was related to leaves and absences. Production fluctuations driven by market demands made it necessary to curtail vacations and non-medical leaves during certain times of the year. Some of the employees who hunted and fished found that particularly annoying. It was not a major problem and in time, they got over it. They had come to count on being able to determine when they wanted vacation, and for years that had not posed a problem. But all that changed in a sluggish economy. During one particularly slow period a year ago, everyone got an unexpected week of vacation in September, when a lack of orders ground production nearly to a halt. Sensing the strain such a move could put on families, particularly young families, the owners were able to pay everyone half of their pay for that week, and as orders picked up, overtime opportunities were given to those who needed those most.

The distinctive color of the company’s product was a recognizable symbol of pride. For decades, all employees wore the light blue color for which the company had become known. Just about a year ago, management announced that there would be no more uniform shirts provided by the company. The cost of providing these shirts was simply prohibitive, and the money could be better spent elsewhere. Along with this announcement, employees were asked to continue to wear light blue shirts when possible. One angry employee put a sign on the board in the break room that read, “If they aren’t going to provide my shirt, they can’t tell me what color it has to be.” When the greatgrandson of the founder read that handwritten note, the hurt on his face was noticeable. The summer company picnic last August was not much different from the picnics of previous years, which had been held on the first Saturday in August since 1924. During some brief comments made at the picnic, the current president of the company shared that the company was on stable ground, but that orders were still off. She made it clear that everything possible was being done to protect the company and its most valuable asset, the employees. In October, it was announced that the annual Christmas bonus and party were being cancelled. That sent a real shock wave through the plant. Rumors ran wild. There were those who were angry and felt that something owed them each year had been taken away for no sound reason. Others were certain that this was a doomsday call that the company was going under. In fact, neither was really the case. Sensing the need to answer a growing concern, the management team met to draft a statement designed to address the rumors. However, before they could, one insightful employee did it for them. His simple handwritten note said it all. “Folks, I too would like to take vacation when it best suits me, and that unexpected week off last year was tough for me too. I always appreciated our company uniform shirts. I was proud to wear it. And yes, I am going to miss the Christmas bonus and party. But rather than complaining about some necessary changes that have come our way, I am

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AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

going to focus on one simple reality. As this year comes to an end, and at least for the foreseeable future, we all have our jobs. And that my friends,

is a holiday bonus worth appreciating, because that’s a gift that keeps on giving!” MSN

In Montana Hope And Youth Spring Eternal By Bob Campbell A few years ago, I was speaking to a group at the Sidney MonDak Heritage Center about being a delegate on the Bill of Rights Committee at the 1972 Montana Constitutional Convention. One fellow waited until after my presentation to say, “It would have been better for all of us in Eastern Montana if you had made us part of North Dakota. Legislators in Helena do not know what problems we have farming here and it would be one third the distance to the state capital.” He was right, of course. The one thing I would not enjoy in North Dakota is the more frequent arctic fronts. This year the cold spells were so severe that not only did Florida get five days of 20-degree temperatures; one Arctic blast extended freezing temperatures all the way to Cuba! This winter was so mild in western Montana that for all practical purposes it ended on January 17 when I put out my hammock and could have taken off the studded snow tires. Each day I watched my family of red squirrels frantically eating sunflower seeds to prepare them to hibernate in the cold weather that never arrived. The 50% decrease in the western Montana snow this year increases the pressure on our water supply for agriculture, fishing, and recreation. It also greatly increases our chances of fires more difficult and expensive to fight. Just when I am convinced our younger generation is hopelessly lost in the internet world of vacuous social networking, I am surprised at their insight and understanding of the world around them. This year I enjoyed being a judge for the state AA speech and debate finals held at Sentinel High School in Missoula. Each school sent well-qualified teams that thoroughly presented arguments on whether the federal government should invest more money to fund programs to reduce poverty in this country. Their thoughtful presentations made me regret that our Montana legislators do not match their skill in debating serious issues. If these young men and women do not become consumed by the polarized politics of policy and continue on the path of

thoughtful advocacy for the benefit of their communities, I feel confident this younger generation will come up with better answers to the problems we have not been able to solve in our lifetimes. With warmer weather, hope springs eternal. The renewal of life in Montana is a reminder that we have the opportunity to enjoy all that our special Montana has to offer. But we must not be so conspicuous that the rest of the world wants to move here and bring with them problems we have never had in our special corner of the world. MSN

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 13


PAGE 14 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Summer is in full swing and as fall approaches, wouldn’t it be great to have a companion with whom to share the gorgeous weather and watch the seasons change? Maybe it’s time to answer one of the ads below or place your own ad so you can find that special someone! To those who wish to respond to any of these personal ads, simply forward your message and address, phone number, or email address to the department number listed in the particular personal ad, c/o Montana Senior News, P.O. Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. We will forward your response, including your address, phone number, and/or email address to the person placing the ad. If you answer an ad in this section, there is no guarantee that you will receive a response. That’s up to the person who placed the ad. Please make 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 October/November 2010 issue. There is no charge for this service and your ad may bring a breath of fresh air to your heart as well. Responses to personal ads appearing in this column can be submitted at any time. However, to place a personal ad in the October/November 2010 issue, the deadline is September 10, 2010. I am a female, 54 years old, non-drinker, light smoker, 5’9” tall with shoulder length medium blonde hair, and average weight. I am looking for a gentleman that is honestly a good person, a believer in Jesus Christ, and age 54-60. I want someone to be friends with first, with the chance of a possible relationship later. I am independent and strong willed. I work at least 50 hours a week so I enjoy relaxing, taking it easy, and enjoying life. I’m a good listener, and like to talk over a cup of coffee, lunch, or dinner. I also enjoy movies and reading. Possibly later we could take a weekend getaway, go sight seeing, shopping, or just take a walk. I will be attending “Culinary Arts” this fall. I love to cook and bake - possibly for you if you play your cards right! If you are interested, please give me a call or jot down a note. I am looking forward to hearing from you. Reply MSN, Dept. 26601, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Single male seeks live-in female companion 60 to 70. Looks unimportant. I do not smoke or drink. All replies are welcome, and I will answer them all. Reply MSN, Dept. 26602, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403.


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

SWM, middle 60s, 5’10”, hazel eyes, salt/pepper full head of hair, medium build, and in perfect health. I enjoy hiking, bicycling, picnics, going out to dinner, swimming, history, day trips, and longer trips in and around Montana, Idaho, and the Pacific Northwest. I have a DVD library with an excess of 850 videos. I do not smoke, do drugs, or drink, although I would not turn down a social drink. I am Christian, but not overly religious. I live in Missoula. Will exchange pictures. The next move is yours. Reply MSN, Dept. 26603, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. I am a male in my late 70s. I am a non-smoker, non-drinker, and do not do drugs of any kind. I like fishing, traveling, and going out to dinner. I am looking for a live-in lady companion in her late 70s or mid 80s. I will share my home with the right lady. Must relocate. Reply MSN, Dept. 26604, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Western MT male, 63, n/s, and retired. I enjoy many rural and outdoor activities including birding, gardening, animals, trees, and eating healthy foods. Travel is also an interest, and it would be nice to meet someone with the time and ability to visit some of Montana’s state parks, hot springs, and other points of common interest. Letter and photo appreciated. Reply MSN, Dept. 26605, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWM, mid-sixties, fit, non-smoker, and nondrinker. I am a boots and jeans type of guy who is honest and romantic. Looking for a special lady, looks and age unimportant - it’s what inside that counts. Prefer Billings area, Red Lodge a plus.

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 15

Please respond with photo and phone number. Reply MSN, Dept. 26606, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. I’m a single male who would like to meet a single lady 45-55 years old. Someone who likes to dance, dine out, go for walks, or just stay home and watch TV. I would like to meet someone for companionship, and then a long-term relationship. I don’t drink, smoke, or do drugs. I am 52 years old, 5’8” tall, have brown eyes, and brown hair. I am looking forward to hearing from you. I will answer all responses. I live in Great Falls. Reply MSN, Dept. 26607, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWM, 70, 188 lbs, 6’ tall, and have a beautiful full white head of hair. I am retired, financially secure, fit, and attractive. I am looking for an active classy lady in her 60s. I will furnish references and exchange photos. I am a retired counselor, coach, teacher, and active health club member. I can relocate to any place. I would rather talk than write. I will answer all responses immediately. Reply MSN, Dept. 26608, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Good looking and often-generous guy who has a lot to offer seeks lady of quality. I am in my late sixties and am in reasonably good health. I am very easy-going and you will find me to be a good listener. I want to make you happy by bringing out the best in you. Significant benefits. If you think you are the right person, I invite you to respond. Reply MSN, Dept. 26609, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403.

My Life. My Death. My Choice. Don’t Let Anyone Take Away Your End-of-Life Choice Helena brain cancer patient Steve Johnson has a choice today. He may not have one come January. “I think I should have something to say about my ending, it’s my decision to make, and it’s a great comfort to know I can ask my doctor to honor my choice to die with dignity.” Our Montana Supreme Court recently decided that end-of-life medical choices are private, between you and your doctor, and that terminally-ill adults can request medication to bring about a peaceful death. But some people don’t agree. They believe politicians and government should decide how Steve Johnson can be allowed to die. Opponents of this most personal and private right have vowed to get the legislature to take it away next January. For people suffering the pain and anguish of a prolonged terminal illness, the decision about how their life ends should be theirs alone, made with the support of family and loved ones.

Steve Johnson

Join the Compassion & Choices Action Network. Call Compassion & Choices at 1(800) 247-7421 Visit www.CompassionAndChoices.org/Steve Or clip out and mail this coupon:

Yes, I support Steve Johnson’s and my own - right to end-of-life choice!

Your right to self-determination is precious, hard won, and in jeopardy.

Name: ______________________________________________

“I’m standing up to protect my choice. We have to stand up, or our freedom to choose will be taken away.” - Steve Johnson

____________________________________________________

Please stand with Steve Johnson and Compassion & Choices in protecting the Montana Supreme Court ruling that respects your personal end-of-life decisions. Protect Steve’s, and your own, right to die with dignity.

Address: _____________________________________________

Phone: ______________________________________________ Email: ______________________________________________ F

You may use my name in letting elected lawmakers know of my support.

Mail to Compassion & Choices of Montana, P.O. Box 1348, Helena, Montana 59624

www.CompassionAndChoices.org/Steve

1(800) 247-7421


PAGE 16 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Petite, single, young looking SWF, healthy (not overweight), blond, early sixties looking for a man late fifties to mid-sixties. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t smoke, do drugs, and drink very lightly (socially). I have good values and a good heart. I am a sincere person and feel honesty is the best policy and very important in a relationship. I am fun loving and would like to share my time with a man who has the same interests. I like to dance, listen to music (currently I am taking piano lessons), watch TV, go to movies, or go out for dinner. I also like to barbeque and enjoy cooking for someone. There are many other things I like to do, but too many to list. I am recently retired and am really enjoying it. With this ad, I am being frisky and taking a chance so if there is an interested man out there, who lives in or near Great Falls, write to me and perhaps we can get together. I will answer all responses. Reply MSN, Dept 26610, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403.

or do drugs and appreciate the same in a partner. Looking forward to hearing from a gentleman in the same area. Reply MSN, Dept 26611, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Wanted: a good looking, loving, country type lady, 70s, 5â&#x20AC;&#x2122;4â&#x20AC;? to 5â&#x20AC;&#x2122;6â&#x20AC;?, blue eyes, who likes quiet times, occasional short trips, hugs, and cuddles. This old boy is 80, 5â&#x20AC;&#x2122;10â&#x20AC;?, about 210, grey hair, glasses. Average looking, in good health. No smoking, drugs, or medication. Looks and feels younger. Does craft shows around MT from spring to December and would appreciate some companionship. Would prefer someone from Great Falls area if possible. If you answer, would appreciate a picture, address, and phone number. Reply MSN, Dept 26612, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403.

SWM, 63 years, n/s, retired, who would like to Mid-60s northwestern Montana lady seeking meet a nice lady that would enjoy the companiongentleman willing to hold hands on a long walk, ship of a tall gentleman. I enjoy many rural and talk, and get to know me. I do not smoke, drink, outdoor activities including birding, gardening,

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animals, walks, and natural history. Also interested in travel and it would be nice to meet someone with the time and ability to visit Montanaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s state parks, hot springs, and other points of interest. Letter and photo appreciated. Reply MSN, Dept 26613, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. I have a great sense of humor and love to have fun. My favorite hobby is dancing, especially the jitterbug. A graduate of the University of South Dakota with a degree in accounting, I have worked in Helena as a state auditor. I would like to meet a woman from the Helena area who is social, ethical with strong principles, and a dancer with a love of music. Looks are relatively unimportant. I am a light smoker, but am in fantastic health. Religiously, I am a firm believer in the Holy Trinity. Reply MSN, Dept 26614, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. White female, early 60s, is seeking friendship/ companionship that may turn into a permanent relationship. I like country living and was born and raised in Minnesota. I enjoy watching wildlife as well as domestic animals. I am currently hand raising a kitten. I also enjoy going out to dinner and live theater (comedy and musicals). I enjoy traveling and seeing parts of Montana that I havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t really seen yet. I am 5â&#x20AC;&#x2122; tall, with blue eyes and long gray hair. I am a smoker, but donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t use alcohol or any drugs. I like to play cards (canasta), do puzzles, make rugs and counted cross-stitch, and dabble in oil painting. Reply MSN, Dept 26615, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Greetings! Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m in the mood for male companionship age 55-65. I love my life in the American West and enjoy the outdoor lifestyle. Campfires, horseback riding, white water rafting, and hiking are favorite activities. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m a â&#x20AC;&#x153;rocker,â&#x20AC;? so Rock and Roll music is a passion with me. An occasional concert is always welcome. No baggage, smoking, or gambling please, just a love of life and good, clean times! Reply MSN, Dept 26616, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m a 60-year-old grandma who recently changed jobs and feels that there is more to life than work. I now have time to travel, explore, fish, meet with friends, and just sit around and enjoy the out-of-doors. I am a very light drinker, but do not smoke or do drugs. I love to BBQ, attend plays and musicals, dance to live music, and camp (but not in a tent). I also love traveling with groups to new places. I would love to have a gentle man join me in the swing to watch the night sky. Must be willing to hold hands, even in public. Should be taller than

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MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 17

5â&#x20AC;&#x2122;6â&#x20AC;? and about my age. Looks are less important to me than finding someone with interesting conversations, an adventurous side, and an interest in traveling to new places and meeting new people. I am self-supporting and hope that there is a gentleman out there who is the same, enjoys a womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s company, and has time to share. Reply MSN, Dept 26617, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. I am a 77-years-young widow who would like to meet a Christian, nonsmoking, non-drinking gentleman from the Billings area who would enjoy an occasional outing at plays, concerts, movies and restaurants, as well as volunteering. I enjoy quiet evenings at home, games, travel, reading, and volunteering. Reply MSN, Dept 26618, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. SWF who lives in Billings would like to be a companion to a man 80 to mid-80s who likes to dance and dine out. Must be non-smoking, but social drinking is ok. I am one who enjoys music, travel, history, and new experiences. I will answer all inquiries and will send a photo. And who knows? We could be a couple! Reply MSN, Dept 26619, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Southwest Montana lady, 60s, looking for friends and a right mate. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m an artist, poet, gardener, photographer, and teacher. Am quiet, calm and contemplative, light-hearted, and open. Well-educated (formally & practically) and intellectual, yet spiritual. Looking for friends who have similar values and the capacity to be happy, self-sufficient, giving, open, fun, honest, and warm. Please be a non-drinker, non-smoker. And, a gardener would be wonderful. Have been divorced many years and have lived alone by choice. Now seeking friendship, a new area to live in, and perhaps a life-mate with a special home in the country. How about you? When you write, please give your email address and/or your home address. Willing to relocate in the right situation. If you have a good heart and â&#x20AC;&#x153;hearthâ&#x20AC;? that needs loving care, let me know! Reply MSN, Dept 26620, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Single, white male in mid-late 70s who likes fishing, closeness, and cuddling, seeks slender- to medium-build lady that enjoys home cooking and going out occasionally for meals, picnics, and sightseeing. I will try to answer all letters and phone calls. Reply MSN, Dept 26621, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Male in late 70s, non-smoker, non-drinker, no drugs of any kind. Likes traveling, fishing, going out to dinner, and staying home watching T.V. Looking for a lady companion in late 70s to mid 80s. Will share my home with the right lady who is willing to relocate. Reply MSN, Dept 26622, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Single, retired R.N. is hoping to meet a nice guy for friendship and possible long-term relationship. I am active, in excellent health, and open to new adventures. Interests include reading, cooking, travel, music, dancing, volunteering, and MT history. Good conversation is essential and quiet times at home are a special treat. If you are honest, compassionate, open to new things, and have a sense of humor, I hope you will contact me. Remember, life is truly best shared with a special friend. Reply MSN, Dept 26623, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. (Contâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d pg 37)

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IsYour Heart At Risk?

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Why Is Cholesterol Important? Your blood cholesterol level has a lot to do with Cholesterol checking your chances of getting heart disease. High in just ten minutes! blood cholesterol is one of the major risk facQuick, accurate and inexpensive. Immediate test results tors for heart disease. In fact, the higher your and feedback from your certified pharmacy blood cholesterol level, the greater your risk health care professional to help you for developing heart disease or having a heart and your doctor manage your health. attack. Heart disease is the number one killer $30., by appointment of women and men in the United States. Each For more information or to talk with our pharmacy professionals call us today! year about a half million people die from heart disease. 549-6163 How Does Cholesterol Cause Heart Inside Albertsons on East Broadway www.eastgatedrug.com Inside Albertsons on East Broadway Disease? When there is too much cholesMissoula terol (a fat-like substance) in your blood, it builds up in the walls of your arteries. Over time, this buildup causes “hardening of the arteries” so that arteries become narrowed and blood flow to the heart is slowed down or blocked. If the blood supply to a Take five minutes portion of the heart is to learn how one hour ca an n can completely cut off by a blockage, the result make a lifetime is a heart attack. of difference. High blood cholesterol itself does OLH]LYHNLWLYZVUZWLUKZOV\YZ not cause symptoms; ^VYRPUNHUKI\PSKPUN\WHZZL[ZK\YPUN[OLPY so many people are SPML[PTL`L[WLVWSLH]LYHNLSLZZ[OHUMV\YOV\YZ WSHUUPUN^OH[[OLPYOLPYZ^PSSYLJLP]L;OLNVVK unaware that their UL^ZPZ[OH[PUSLZZ[OHUVULOV\Y`V\JHUIL cholesterol level is too ^LSSVU`V\Y^H`[VJYLH[PUNHWSHU[OH[^PSSWYV[LJ[ high. It is important `V\YOHYKLHYULKHZZL[ZHUKLUZ\YL`V\Y^PZOLZ to find out what your

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cholesterol numbers are because lowering cholesterol levels that are too high lessens the risk for developing heart disease and reduces the chance of a heart attack or dying of heart disease, even if you already have it. Cholesterol lowering is important for everyone - younger, middle age, and older adults; women and men; and people with or without heart disease. What Do Your Cholesterol Numbers Mean? Everyone age 20 and older should have their cholesterol measured at least once every 5 years. It is best to have a blood test called a “lipoprotein profile” to find out your cholesterol numbers. This blood test is done after a 9-12 hour fast and gives information about your: • Total cholesterol • LDL (bad) cholesterol--the main source of cholesterol buildup and blockage in the arteries • HDL (good) cholesterol--helps keep cholesterol from building up in the arteries • Triglycerides - another form of fat in your blood If it is not possible to get a lipoprotein profile done, knowing your total cholesterol and HDL cholesterol can give you a general idea about your cholesterol levels. If your total cholesterol is 200 mg/dL or more or if your HDL is less than 40 mg/dL, you will need to have a lipoprotein profile done. HDL (good) cholesterol protects against heart disease, so for HDL, higher numbers are better. A level less than 40 mg/dL is low and is considered a major risk factor because it increases your risk for developing heart disease. HDL levels of 60 mg/dL or more help to lower your risk for heart disease. Triglycerides can also raise heart disease risk. Levels that are borderline high (150199 mg/dL) or high (200 mg/dL or more) may need treatment in some people. MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Why Resistance Training Matters By Carolyn Nutovic What are your health and fitness goals? Are you looking forward to playing tennis or golf with friends, or traveling to a new destination? Whether your dream is to keep up with the grandkids, or be swimsuit ready for your cruise this fall, resistance training can help transform the dream into an achievable goal. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), American Heart Association, National Institutes of Health, and National Institute on Aging all recommend resistance training for men and women 50 and older, within specific guidelines. This is because the most dramatic declines due to aging are in muscle strength (Crandell 2006) “Unless you do resistance exercise - strength training with weights or elastic bands - you lose six pounds of muscle a decade,” says Wayne Wescott, author of Strength Training Past 50. Resistance training is a form of strength training in which various muscle groups in the body are engaged to oppose a force. Muscle groups either move against, or hold still against the force. Exercises may employ equipment using a cable system, such as the Total Gym or Resistance Chair, or may involve props as simple as a chair and dumbbells. ACSM recommends beginning with a cable system and progressing to free weights to avoid injury. A safe, effective workout regimen should include daily stretching and balance exercises, and resistance training two to three times a week alternating with three to five days of moderate cardio-vascular conditioning. However, individuals with chronic conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, or osteoporosis should seek professional advice when evaluating frequency, duration, intensity, and number of sets and repetitions. Chair-based exercise routines are an ideal starting point for such individuals because they provide a stable, low-impact environment in which to increase strength and cardio capacity. What are some of the benefits of resistance training? First, if you regularly incorporate this type of strength training into your routine, you will ensure greater long-term functionality. This simply means, “resistance training makes muscles substantially stronger and helps people with activities such as walking, climbing steps, and standing up from chairs.” (Boston Globe) Such basic day-today activities help maintain independence. Also implied is the ability to continue enjoying other activities such as hiking, bowling, cycling, and

the grandkids. Second, an exercise regimen that includes resistance training has broad health benefits. Susan Crandell, author of Thinking About Tomorrow: Reinventing Yourself at Midlife, reports “strength training just 20 minutes a day, two or three times a week can rebuild three pounds of muscle and increase your metabolism by seven percent. [You’ll] feel more energetic, more alert, more vital, and alive. Plus, the added muscle has a halo effect on many systems of the body, reducing blood pressure, improving your ability to use glucose from the blood by 25 percent, increasing bone mass by one to three percent, and improving gastrointestinal efficiency by 55 percent.” (AARP Magazine) Finally, we would all like to look great on the beach, wouldn’t we? What is the relationship between resistance training and weight loss? The bottom line in weight loss, medical conditions such as thyroid aside, is that when you burn more calories than you take in, you lose weight. An intelligent weight loss program includes both nutrition and exercise, variables determined by the specific profile of the person attempting to lose weight. Research has shown circuit resistance-training produces the same calorie burn as a brisk walk, while also building lean muscle mass. (Clark) Anecdotal evidence also points to the effectiveness of resistance training in a weight-loss program. Louise Geary Crawford, a 73-year-old nurse, real estate agent and business owner, was told by her doctor that it would be unlikely she would be able to lose weight at her age. She tried various diet plans to no avail. Despite these failures, she kept exploring options for weight loss, greater flexibility, and increased energy. Ultimately, she turned to resistance training after seeing the Resistance Chair on television. Now, nearly a year later and almost 50 pounds lighter, she is a success story. The evidence is clear. Having an exercise routine that includes resistance training can be transformational. This year you will lose the weight, lower your blood pressure, and start running or cycling. How about the National Senior Games in 2011? Carolyn Nutovic is a certified personal trainer with the National Academy of Sports Medicine and a service representative at VQ ActionCare. For information, please visit, www.vqactioncare. com. Carolyn may be contacted at 877-368-6800 or via email at cnutovic@vqactioncare.com. MSN

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 19


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Ensuring Quality Health Care On The Hi-Line The Hi-Line Health Foundation, Inc. in Chester has a mission to support Liberty Medical Center (LMC) to assure quality health care services on the Hi-Line. Through the Foundation, area residents contribute to the current and future needs of LMC and thereby assure the availability of services at a convenient location. Just a few samples of foundation gifts include those from Former Senator and Lt. Governor of Montana Allen Kolstad and his wife Iva who contributed to upgrade the Acute Care and Long Term Care units. Jim and Julie Briden of Frontier Aviation & Chemical gifted $25,000 for membership, adding to our million-dollar base fund, from which only earned interest is spent for needed upgrades to LMC. The Pugsley Family furnished a sleep lab, while Molly Bond, the Robert Griffin families, and CoBank have purchased new and improved resident beds. The PT department’s new Ultrasound/electrotherapy machine and the Clinic’s new hi-lo exam tables are gifts from family donations. Charitable giving is an important way to make a difference in the world consistent with your beliefs, values, and concerns. Gifts to the Foundation are tax deductible, deeply appreciated, and used wisely. For more information about how we can assist you and your advisors regarding your 2010 charitable giving, contact the Hi-Line Health Foundation at 406-759-5181 or visit www.hilinehealth.org. MSN

Is it Prostrate or Prostate? By Lois Green Stone, Senior Wire Psst. Did you hear who needs a prostrate operation? Yes, a prostrate operation. What do you mean - didn’t I say it right? Well, the correct word is prostate. The prostate is a walnut-sized gland that surrounds the urethra below the bladder and produces prostate fluid, which facilitates the movement of sperm through the urethra during ejaculation. Guys, at some point in your life you could have a problem with that gland and face the choice between surgery and patience. The most common problems are an enlarged prostate and prostate cancer. Yet, there is a “let’s wait and see” to consider. Your routine digital rectal exam requires no thought. It is a medical given. But if you are older and having a problem with weak stop-and-start urine streams, that is a valid signal that you may have an enlarged prostate. Another cue is if you have difficulty urinating without resorting to the old running-water trick used for children. Prostate trouble is something that might happen to every man as he ages. Medical treatments certainly do change with technology. Now, there is a procedure called photoselective vaporization of the prostate (PVP) that is done with a laser. This method removes the enlarged tissue, has a very


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

short recovery time, and is not supposed to affect a man’s ability to be sexually active with his partner. There are also drugs that block conversion of testosterone and, for some with benign prostatic hypertrophy, shrink the swelled gland. Let’s backtrack. About 350,000 prostatectomies used to be performed annually, but every surgery has risks and sexual dysfunction is one of the too frequent side effects from this operation. In spring 1997, some medical centers began using ultrasound-guided transperineal brachytherapy for prostate cancer. This method uses ultrasound images to guide needles that permanently implant rice-sized, radioactive-iodine seeds into the prostate. Zap went the cancer for many men. If a physician suggests a wait-and-see plan, it is because a man can choose it. Even the Mayo Clinic often advises men 70 and over to do nothing for slow growing cancers of the prostate. Yes, 70 sounds so dramatic that you think those Medicare men might have heart failure before the cancer kicks in fatally, but when you get to be 70, you

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 21

might not think it is all that old. Is urinary urgency or frequency due to an enlarged gland or medications? Some over-thecounter pills can produce these problems, so make sure you always tell your doctor what drugs you take – everything including herbs and vitamins. If cancer has been ruled out, you might think to have an operation when you are younger to better deal with the trauma of surgery. However, symptoms really may improve with medication, and the potential of sexual dysfunction is real. Be sure to discuss fully your situation with your physician because delay is medically recommended in many instances. No one has professed that aging is pleasant, but many joke about the alternative – dying young. No matter how it is mispronounced, we all know what is being discussed. So next time you hear it mispronounced, ask if the subject is benign prostatic hyperplasia. Then learn about that condition so when it happens, you will know more than just correct English. MSN

  No doubt about it, aging does have its gifts: retirement, grandchildren, increased travel, financial stability, and accumulated wisdom. However, as many of us reach “senior citizen’s discount” territory, the privileges of aging are offset by its darker realities. Sure you will get a cheaper ticket once you arrive at the movie theatre and maybe a discounted meal at the restaurant afterward... but first you have to remember where you put your keys so you can get there at all! It is one of those clichés that prompts a rueful chuckle and, simultaneously, a shiver of anxiety. Even if you are not worried about the dreaded “A” word - okay, not too worried - any memory loss can make you feel frightened and helpless. Don’t fret, says Patt Lind-Kyle. Just as you can stave off loss of muscle tone with weight training and bone loss with calcium, you can “firm up” your brain with conscious mental exercises. “The good news is that significant memory loss is not an inevitable part of aging,” says Lind-Kyle, author of Heal Your Mind, Rewire Your Brain: Applying the Exciting New Science of Brain Synchrony for Creativity, Peace and Presence (Energy Psychology Press, 2009, ISBN: 978-160415-056-8, $26.95), and mind training guide whose voice appears on the book’s companion CDs. “For most people, maintaining a healthy mind is largely under your control no matter how many years you have under your belt. You just have to intentionally focus on keeping your mind in shape.” Yes, we have all heard that a more active mind is a healthier mind, and that we should use our brains in order to keep our memories sharp.

That is definitely true, Lind-Kyle agrees, but it is only part of the equation. If you want to enjoy life as fully as you can for as long as you can, you will need to do more than just the crossword puzzle - you will need to consciously explore and redirect your brain patterns, a process that has been scientifically proven effective. “It was once believed that, as we age, the brain’s neural pathways became fixed and thus unchangeable, and that we were stuck with our aging brains as they degraded over time,” Lind-Kyle explains. “However, there now exists strong evidence that the brain continues to evolve, change, and adjust throughout adult life in response to our thoughts, emotions, and actions. This concept is called neuroplasticity, and it essentially means that - to refute an old saying - old dogs can be taught new tricks. As a senior, you just have to decide which tricks you want to learn!” MRI suitable for scanning the whole body. Curious? Skeptical? Perhaps a little of Introducing the Philips Intera Achieva 1.5T both? Then read on to MR system. learn what you can do to boost your memory at any age, and why it works: First, a recap of what you know. You have heard it before, “Use it or lose it.” If you do not use your brain, its functions will become sluggish and your

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such as working on a golf swing. The second is through having novel experiences, such as taking a trip to a new place or learning a second language. When either of these things happens, your neuronal connections grow and change, and supportive cells and blood vessels join them in the activation process. It’s great to know that the adult brain can continue to develop as long as we continue to use our mental capacities!” Next, get your head around the science you probably have not heard before. Here is a newsflash that may or may not surprise you: We humans do not have as much free will as we think we do. Yes, you are free to choose what you would like to eat for dinner and where you would like to go on your next vacation, but in terms of the really important things - your behaviors, reactions, thoughts, and mindset - many of us are essentially prisoners of our own minds. “Due to a mix of genetic factors and external conditioning, your brain’s neuronal pathways are wired to cause you to react to various situations and stimulants in distinct ways,” Lind-Kyle explains. “Often, these reactions are not useful - in fact, they can cause your mind to become cluttered and foggy - and over time, they can have negative effects on your health and wellbeing. The good news is that this dysfunctional programming can be changed through a mind training process that encourages commitment, intention, attention, flexibility, and adaptability.” Mind training? What is that? Essentially, there are four brainwaves: beta, alpha, theta, and delta. IdeMontana Oral Surgery AND ally, they should all work Dental Implant Center together in harmony, but one often dominates the others. This leads to dysfunctional thoughts and habits, and “negative feedback loops” of behavior. Mind training - a not-so-flaky form of meditation - helps you to focus on and become aware of each of these four brainwaves, thus triggering the neuroplastic function of the For tooth replacement or to act as anchors for your dentures. General anesthesia for your comfort, brain. local anesthesia for your convenience. Extractions and general Oral Surgery. Harvard educated. “Bringing your brain Jason H. Fleischmann DMD, MD waves out of whack Diplomate of the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons and into synchrony is a 65 Medical Park Dr Helena 443-3334 montanaoralsurgery.com

memory will become fuzzy. In technical terms, the brain space that is allocated to rarely used functions shrinks because no energy is being poured into its circuits. So (as you have also probably heard before) you have to purposefully activate, connect, and grow your brain’s neural networks to prevent such shrinkage. “There are two ways to make sure that your brain’s neural networks are firing away,” shares Lind-Kyle. “One is through repetitive practice,

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key component of really sharpening your mind,” says Lind-Kyle. “By becoming truly aware of your thought processes and emotional responses, you will become better able to identify the behaviors and reactions that are keeping you from peak mental fitness!” Do not underestimate the stress/aging connection. Most of us would agree that stress is not a good thing. But on the flip side, its effects are not as concrete as those of smoking, say, or eating unhealthy foods are... right? Wrong, says Lind-Kyle. Stress has very real adverse effects that range from lack of energy to a compromised immune system to higher blood pressure. But of particular concern to the older section of the population are stress’s effects on the aging process. The stress chemicals that collect and circulate continually in your brain and body cause the hippocampus - which is the center for learning and memory - to degenerate. Lind-Kyle explains: “As we get older and are not as active, our repressed automatic thoughts become more pronounced, and our repressed emotional memories begin to surface. If we are not using some kind of mental training, the rush of anxiety caused by past memories increases, as do the associated brain chemicals. The resulting anxiety, stress hormones, and changes in brain chemistry accelerate the aging process, produce depression, and cause you to become less and less in touch with reality as it actually exists. It’s imperative to provide stress with an outlet - and mind training is among the most effective.” Learn to focus your attention and quiet your mind. Try this: Look around, find an object to focus on, and try to hold your attention on it. Did you notice all the thoughts that “popped up” as you tried to focus on the object? Really, you did not fully see the object itself because your mind was so clouded with relating the object to other things, naming it, evaluating it, judging it, etc. Can you see how in other situations this kind of “mental jabber” increases your anxiety and prevents you from acting positively and decisively? Chances are, you spend more time rehashing the past and worrying about the future than you do dealing with the here and now. You are trapped in a small world of your own making that only constricts with age. “When your brain is cluttered with unfocused thoughts, several adverse effects come about,” warns Lind-Kyle. “First, your ability to make discriminating judgments that can initiate positive growth is impaired. Second, your mind might wander and become scattered, making it difficult to focus on conversations, reading, or problem solving. Either way, your mental edge is dulled, and you find it harder to remember people, events, and facts because your conscious awareness was never on them in the first place. “To combat the racing thoughts that speed up your life and distort your focus, always start with simple breathing and muscle relaxation exercises,” she advises. “While focusing on breathing, notice the areas of your body that are the tensest and release that tension as you exhale. By taking a few moments to do this exercise throughout the day, you will notice you’re able to focus more easily on the task at hand without being plagued by random, distracting thoughts. Remember - the brain likes direction and purpose!” Learn to be physically present. When was the last time you stopped to literally smell the roses, enjoy the warmth of the sun on your face, or listen to a beautiful piece of music with no other distractions? For many of us, it has been awhile. As we grow older, we become so habituated to our sensations that we lose touch with the living reality of our being. You might recognize a tree, for example, but on some level, you no longer see it - and that is a problem. A lack of awareness of your sensations can cause you to become forgetful, to have difficulty meeting deadlines and maintaining a schedule, and to have increased anxiety and stress. You might even experience memory loss because one of the ways by which memories are formed is when the brain stores the


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

information it gains through sensation. “Your mind needs to be quiet in order for memory to be well-stored,” says Lind-Kyle. “The key is to lock in memory through your body. For example, if you’re sitting in a chair and you want to remember something you’ve just heard, you have to know that you’re sitting. Pay attention to the feeling of your feet resting on the floor and of your back on the chair. This will move you into a place of attention and allow your brain to channel its energy toward memory storage. Actually, sensation acts as information and is processed into memories and thoughts, which are then stored in the brain and used as a basis of your knowledge. I tell people to remember ‘mumble in, mumble

out.’ If information enters your brain quickly and haphazardly, that’s how you’ll remember it.” “Ultimately, a great many of the effects of aging that are chalked up to the deterioration of the brain and the body are actually not the results of natural run-down, but of an unconscious lack of mental discipline,” concludes Lind-Kyle. “The brain-mind is facile, flexible, and plastic, and under normal conditions it can change at any age. With regular mind training, your mental edge will remain honed, your memory will remain accessible, you’ll be able to regulate your emotions in a positive manner, and you’ll be able to respond to difficulties with greater ease!” MSN



By Lois Greene Stone, Senior Wire Permission Release Form - a scary document. I wish the paper were folded so all I could see would be the dotted line for my signature and the date! I do not want to know all about “what might happen.” The decision to have cataract surgery is made by a patient and a conservative physician. “When you are ready” is the doctor’s comment. So my world has been blurry, with halos around lights, and traffic lights that look like starbursts. A crescent moon is a bunch of bananas. The pin on a golf course has multiple sticks, and I putt seeing multiple balls even though my putter assumes only one is in position. But I can park a car even between two big vans, have no problem with colors, and can walk down a flight of stairs. Not ready for surgery. I am not a danger to myself or anyone else. So faces at the next table in a restaurant have few features - most people do not have pleasant expressions anyway, so that is not too bad to miss. Recently, after a theatre performance, I had to ask my husband if the leading lady was pretty. Later, I called the eye doctor to tell him, “let’s do this,” on whichever eye he decided to do first. He explained that my eye will be a Brownie camera, and the artificial lens will have only one focal length. The other eye, blurred vision and all, will be like other cameras that can focus near, far, and in-between. I did not think the doctor was old enough to know what a Brownie camera was anyway, but I had one when I was very young. He explained how he would remove my eye’s lens, what he would insert, and about the after-care. I had made up my mind before entering the office, so why was I again hearing “am I sure?” Will the focal length allow me to read sheet music without the big-note pieces I now buy in order to keep playing the piano? Will it be disconcerting, until eye number two is done, for one eye to see only far and the other to see a blurry everything? “Surgery has risks,” the doctor told me as he had done before. Yet he had said that when I was ready I would have the procedure. Now I was ready, but still I wondered whether I would actually have difficulty adjusting to clarity in one eye after all those years of blurriness. Would my brain be able to handle adjusting to sharp and crisp rather than accommodating to hazy? Additionally, I have medical conditions that have delayed procedures because of possible complications. There is also my permanent halfface paralysis with its non-blinking eye on the right. The left eye has retina damage, so the doctor has to decide from which problem eye he would like to extract a cataract - but I have made his morning interesting. Then I got the permission release. On orange paper, the same color as a warning light on a roadway, it presented what can go wrong. Unlike the warning labels on medicines, too tiny to read and often discarded with the trash, this was a good-sized font and spaced perfectly. I had never received warnings when I got my driver’s license; no warnings have been shown before my teeth are cleaned, or my eyes dilated, or before I went through childbirth. Where are warnings at pedestrian crossings? An airline ticket does not warn of plugged and painful ears or leg cramps. Are these

“at my own risk,” while a medical procedure is in the hands of either a human or a human-guided robot? If I elect to drive, I have to be aware of the crazy people drinking coffee and talking on the phone at the same time and those who are distracted further by amulets dangling from their rearview mirrors. So, on the road, someone else’s hands (or lack of them on the steering wheel), reaction time, brakes, and tires mean something can go wrong and I might be hit. I put a book over the release form, allowing only the signature-date spaces to show, take a pen in my fingers, and sign permission. MSN

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Macular Degeneration a Growing Problem as Boomers Age By Tait Trussell, Senior Wire The risk increases with age. Just our luck. What I am referring to is a vision-related ailment called macular degeneration. You have probably heard of it. As Americans get older, the number of cases of macular degeneration is “growing at an alarming rate,” says the American Health Assistance Foundation (AHAF), a nonprofit organization that has spent 30 years funding research on age-related and degenerative diseases. As you age, your chances of contracting vision-related maladies that could lead to blindness “skyrockets,” as AHAF frighteningly puts it. What causes macular degeneration is the death of cells at the center of your retina. It is like having a hole at the middle of your vision. Those of us over 60 are most likely to be victims of this disease. In its most severe form, it can be irreversible. The Foundation cites the case of one woman, Audrey Drake who recently turned 90. The first inklings of her vision loss started about 25 years ago. She was having a hard time reading things she held right in front of her eyes. Audrey, as do many victims in the early stages of macular degeneration, tried getting stronger reading glasses. But her straight ahead vision continued to worsen. So she paid a visit to her ophthalmologist. There she got the bad news. She was diagnosed with the “dry”

form of macular degeneration. Her doctor told her there was not a cure and that it would get worse as she got older. The center of her vision is now completely blurred. She cannot read, even the sheet music for her piano which she so much enjoys playing. She had to sell her car. Even cooking became a problem because she misread temperatures and ruined meals. Audrey can only detect motion, color, and shape out of the corner of her eye. She cannot see the face of he new great granddaughter, a saddening loss. She wishes and prays that the dark spot in the middle of her vision would go away. About 1.8 million Americans now have macular degeneration. The government estimates that by the year 2020, as the baby boomers age, this blinding disease will rob near three million Americans of their eyesight. But there is hope in the research presently being conducted by Macular Degeneration Research, founded in 1998 to decipher the causes and possibly find a cure. Macular Degeneration Research President Brian Regan is enthusiastic about the progress underway. He cites examples of some breakthroughs made possible by the $3 million in funding to his organization. At Johns Hopkins University Medical School, in 1999, Dr. Peter Campochiaro and his staff found a drug that prevents abnormal blood vessel growth on or under the retina of laboratory mice. This is considered an important step toward treatment. In 2000, Dr. Joe Hollyfield, chair of the Macular Degeneration Scientific Review Committee, developed a technique to allow researchers to better study the molecular mechanisms involved in formation of certain protein deposits appearing in the retina in the early stages of macular degeneration. With the new technique, more than 120 different proteins have been identified. In 2002, Dr. Martin Friedlander, a member of the Macular Degeneration Research Scientific Review Committee, found that adult stem cells injected in the back of the eye helped to curtail the development of retinal diseases. This may lead to new treatments. Dr. Regan noted that Macular Degeneration Research “does not receive even a dime of government funding. Instead, we rely on the compassion and good will of the American public” for funding. MSN


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Too Darned Old! By Dick Meister, Senior Wire Racism and sexism we know plenty about. But what of ageism? Ageism can strike anyone once they reach a certain age, sometimes as early as 40, and it can make the victim feel unwanted, unneeded, and oppressed by all in this work and youth oriented society. It doesn’t matter if you’re white or black, brown or Asian, or man or woman. What matters is your age. Federal law and many state laws say employers cannot consider your age in deciding if you should be hired, fired, retired, promoted, laid off, or whatever. But the laws are widely violated, and sometimes invalidated by courts. Some of the court decisions have been downright bizarre. One recent ruling, for example, found that an employer who told a worker he was being fired because “you’re too damn old for this kind of work” was not violating the law. Another court said a boss who told a worker he had to make way for younger workers was simply stating “a fact of life.” The Supreme Court recently made a key ruling that workers who are fired because of their age will have to prove that their age was the decisive factor in the firing, not just a contributing factor. A bill currently in Congress would invalidate that ruling. The number of workers filing legal complaints of age discrimination has been growing steadily. Between 2007 and 2008, the number grew by 30 percent to nearly 25,000 cases. The actual number of older workers discriminated against is undoubtedly higher, if only because many victims can’t afford the court proceedings that often follow the filing of complaints. Age discrimination is expected to become an even greater problem as the number of older workers continues to grow steadily and because of current economic conditions that are forcing more older workers of retirement to seek jobs. The drying up of pension funds and the increase in the Social Security retirement age has also led more older people to seek jobs - jobs that are hard enough for anyone to find, but particularly hard for

many older workers. Their unemployment figures have been consistently higher than those of most other groups. Not all unemployed older workers want or need jobs. But most do, as has been shown repeatedly in studies by private and public agencies. Many badly need the income. Most also seek jobs as a way to maintain self-esteem and an active, meaningful existence. But younger workers, of course, can be paid less than older workers with seniority and more benefits, and many employers may underestimate the long-term value of experience. Employers also are greatly influenced by the myths about older workers that many people still accept as fact. The widely-held assumption that as workers age their productivity declines, for instance, is simply not true on a general basis. As a matter of fact, studies show that among white-collar workers, those 45 or older produce more than their younger counterparts, thanks to their greater knowledge and experience. Among blue-collar workers, there is no substantial difference in output. Older workers also have lower rates of absenteeism than younger workers, fewer on-the-job accidents, and at least as great a capacity to learn new skills required by new technology. Generally, older workers also are more stable and dependable. They show more satisfaction with their jobs and hold them much longer. Those facts alone should be enough to cause employers to mend their ways, but the trend seems to be in the opposite direction. The right to protection from age discrimination sadly will remain what one writer calls a second-class right. Dick Meister, a San Francisco-based writer, has covered labor and politics for a half-century as a reporter, editor, author, and commentator. Contact him through his website, www.dickmeister.com. MSN

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Preserving Butte’s Past By Kim Thielman-Ibes “This is a labor of love,” says Bob McMurray with a wistful smile, “Because the history of this town is something else!” McMurray is one of four Butte residents who have been working on unearthing, chronicling, and sharing Butte’s rich and bawdry past through the Old Butte Historical Adventure’s guided walking tours of our nations’ largest historic landmark district. “If you stand on Granite Street, in front of the Montana Standard Building and turn in a 180 degree arc, every building you’ll see is more than one hundred years old, many dating to the 1870s with a couple to the 1860s,” says Denny Dutton a Butte history buff and guide for the tours. He adds, “There are historical districts all over America, but Butte is the only urban historical district that is completely intact. This is what makes Butte so unique.” Dutton notes that there was a time, during the 1960s and 1970s, when the mining company planned to demolish this historic downtown core and have it become part of the Berkeley Pit, moving town further down the hill. “That’s why there were so many fires during this time,” he says, adding, “There were sixty-three buildings lost in total, all to fire, and most of them from arson. Not one person was convicted. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed before it all burned.” McMurray works alongside Dutton, Dick Gibson, and Pat Mohan to untangle, clean up, and preserve artifacts, architecture, and memories lurking beneath Butte’s collapsed underground city, hidden within the crumbling walls of these historic buildings or, locked away in a tin casually tossed and forgotten with time. “I can’t tell you what this means to me to preserve a wonderful piece of America,” says Dutton, “Here you had the poorest of the poor and the richest of the rich and you would find them rubbing elbows at the bar together.” Dutton and Mike Burns founded Old Butte Historical Adventures in 2004 and have since sold the business to Bob

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McMurray. The two started by providing evening walking tours within Butte’s historic district. One day, an old-timer’s story about a 1920s speakeasy in the basement of the historic Rockwood Hotel, caught their attention. Burns got permission from the owner of the Rockwood Hotel to check out the rumor. The speakeasy they unearthed, cleaned, and preserved turned out to be the most ornate east of the Mississippi with its terrazzo-tiled floors, sculpted architectural motifs, secret entry beneath the city, and its two-way mirrors to keep out miscreants and cops. From the proceeds of these tours, they began working on more of Butte’s lost treasures. “Nobody had seen a lot of these places for eighty years or more,” adds Dutton, “Much of it was underground or up on abandoned second floors. The most interesting second floor we have cleaned out was the Dellinger Law Offices, abandoned in 1938. They’d cut the stairs out and there were more than 700 dead pigeons and fourteen inches of pigeon poop that I cleaned out.” They found thirteen linear feet of lawyer’s case files and the office doors still had their original painted glass windows. The law offices belonged to Charles Juttner, an overweight communist who would weigh himself daily at Woolworths. His offices are now part of their historical walking tour. Gibson, a geologist by education, guide for the historical tours, and bucket hauler when work needs to be done on new projects, has always been interested in history. “I’ve always taken the broad view as a geologist, though I was used to looking at 150 million years or more not 150 years. Butte is what does is to you. We like to say that Butte doesn’t need any embellishment, all the stuff we tell is the truth.” What he loves most about his involvement is continually discovering new things. For Gibson, working with McMurray, Dutton, and Mohan has been a huge plus. “We learn from each other continuously and we get really excited when we uncover new things,” says Gibson. “It’s not so much about the particular places we go but things about the area. Bob (McMurray) discovered a tiny café that seated four and was famous for being the smallest restaurant in the world. Then there was a riot in 1895 on (Cont’d on page 34)


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Rules of Golf – Are They For Real? By Tait Trussell Considering that golf is often called the most frustrating game on earth and is played according to a 264-page rule book, why are more than 37 million men and women - many over 65 - spending scores of millions of dollars a year on the game? Could it be the thrill of seeing a drive take flight from the tee box and land in the center of the fairway, or sinking a 25-foot putt? Neither is always true, because the average golfer shoots over 100. Golf has been played since its origin in Scotland in the 11th century. And, according to a National Golf Foundation study, there has been a 5 percent rise in the number of rounds played each year. Seniors have a large advantage over the pros in one respect. They have a chance to shoot their age – considered one of the most difficult feats in the game. Obviously, no 25-year-old or even 45-year-old professional has a chance of shooting that figure in the regulation 18 holes. But a good golfer who is 75 or 80 has a fair chance of shooting his or her age on occasion, if he is a good golfer. “It’s an exciting day when and if it happens,” related Arnold Palmer, one of the gods of the game. “I remember the day I first did it in a tournament on my 66th birthday in the Champions Tour event in Seattle in 1995, and it was touch and go right up to the last putt. It’s been easier every year since then,” the aging Palmer added with a chuckle. Compared with most sports today, golf is a genteel game, where players are expected - if they break a rule - to call it on themselves. Meaning they usually have to take an extra stroke or sometimes two strokes depending on the severity of the violation. Among the 34 main rules of the game, for example, Rule 32-2 on Disqualification Penalties says, “A competitor is disqualified from the competition for a breach of a host of regulations, including undue delay or slow play under rule 6-7,” which says, “The player must play without undue delay and in accordance with any pace of play guidelines that the committee (local golf committee) may establish. Between completion of a hole and playing from the next teeing ground, the player must not unduly delay play.” Then a variety of penalties is listed for a breach of rule 6-7, including references to other rules. Or, “Every player is entitled and obliged to play the ball from the position where it has come to rest after a stroke, unless a rule allows or demands otherwise (Rule 13-10).

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Some rules are so onerous and complex, that many golfers are unfamiliar with, or overlook, them. A few golfers carry a copy of the rules book with them and dispute a violation by their competitor usually in a friendly manner. But many rules are broken by the scratch player. For example, many golfers take a mulligan, or second drive, on the first hole, if their first drive goes array. A former college fraternity brother and fellow

golfer has taken this to the limit. He jokingly suggested that “fantasy golf” be allowed. According to his theory of such a game, “When you don’t like your shot, plop down another ball and hit it. If you do not like that, plop down another ball. Eventually a ball will go where you want it to go. Do not score any of the lousy balls. They must have been faulty in their manufacture.” Yes, it is easy to see how changing the rules could change the game. MSN

Preserving Butte’s Past - Continued from page 32 another part of Broadway Street, in researching the riot I figured out where the Maguire Opera House was that Mark Twain performed in the year before.” Sixty-year-old Gibson notes that this is the most fun he has had in a long time. Of the four men, Mohan is the only Butte native. He met Dutton while touring the speakeasy and their conversation naturally turned to historical buildings that his family owned. “I told them about the tin shop my grandfather built back in the early 1900s and about the Cabbage Patch Shanty Town that became home for immigrants, a minersslum, from 1880 through the 1940s. They did the

research and found what I’d told them to be true. I helped clean these buildings up and they are now part of the historical walking tour.” Mohan, twice retired and now works with A.W.A.R.E. in Butte, was not told until he was in his forties that rooms upstairs from the tin shop were used as a brothel. “I didn’t always like history,” says McMurray, “But I’m a carpenter and when I got involved and saw all the old woodworking I wanted to know the history behind that. Now, I love history.” McMurray, Dutton, Gibson, and Mohan all share a passion for history, but not just any history. Theirs is a passion for the rich, colorful past of the Richest Hill on Earth. They continue to unearth more of Butte’s interesting mysteries and are digging out bucket-by-bucket a portion of a sidewalk that once snaked beneath the city of Butte covering a tenblock area. For more information about these history buffs and their Old Butte Historical Adventures visit their website at www. buttetours.info or call Bob McMurray at 406-4983424. MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Why the ‘Recreation’ in Recreational Vehicle? By Bernice Beard, Senior Wire Even retirees need recreation. “If bread is the first necessity of life, recreation is a close second,” wrote Edward Bellamy (1850–1898), American author. What Is Recreation? Recreation is a way to refresh ourselves and regain control of our lives. It is an acceptable way to build feelings of self-worth and find pleasure in life. Recreation is subjective and personal: while surfing may be fun for some people, others may prefer hiking. Recreation includes indoor activities such as reading, playing games, writing, singing, and listening to music. Outdoor recreation includes camping, traveling, boating, fishing, swimming, surfing, scuba diving, hiking, horseback riding, and much more. Why We Need Recreation? In good times and bad, we all need recreation. Why? • To nurture our bodies and minds with relaxation and enjoyment. • To serve as the antidote for workaholism by providing a beneficial break. • To stretch our physical and mental abilities, giving us a renewed sense of achievement. • To give us the benefits of physical fitness, positive thinking, satisfaction of accomplishment, knowledge, and intellectual experiences. • To provide healthy activities that help counteract stress. • To supply a useful diversion from chronic pain and other health problems. How RVing Meets That Need? What is a recreational vehicle if not recreational? The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) defines an RV as “a vehicle that combines transportation and temporary living quarters for travel, recreation, and camping.” According to a 2005 University of Michigan study commissioned by RVIA, “Nearly one in twelve U.S. vehicle-owning households now own an RV. That’s nearly 8 million households - a 15 percent increase during 2001-2005 and a 58 percent gain during 1980-2005.” The study also found that approximately 8.2 million RVs travel the nation’s roads. RVIA finds that people choose and use RVs for

their flexibility and convenience, comfort, family appeal, affordability, lure of the outdoors, versatility, and rentability. How can RVing meet your recreational needs? • RVing provides meaningful, satisfying ways to use our precious time and to enjoy a healthy lifestyle. • PKF Consulting, travel, and tourism consultants, found that even during times of high fuel prices, typical RV trips cost an average of 27 to 61 percent less than other types of vacations. • RVs can serve as base camps for sports and special events such as NASCAR races. • RVing refreshes the mind and body through relaxation away from normal routines and enjoyment of new scenes and activities. • It helps build relationships among family members and friends by enticing RVers to talk about what to do, where to go to work as a team, and to bond. • RVers join clubs to take advantage of discounts and other benefits; meet other RVers, and participate in campouts, rallies and caravan adventures, and otherwise enjoy using their RVs. Examples are the Handicapped Travel Club (www.handicappedtravelclub.com/), brand name clubs such as the Holiday Rambler Recreational Vehicle Club (www.hrrvc.org/), the Good Sam Club (http://www.goodsamclub.com/), and commercial caravans such as Fantasy RV Tours

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MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 35


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(www.fantasyrvtours.com/). • RV travelers can visit national recreation areas such as Big South Fork in Kentucky and Tennessee (www.nps.gov/biso/). This area offers camping, an outdoor coal-mining museum, hiking, fishing, hunting, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, and rock climbing. • RVers can also visit national parks. For example, more than 17 million people visited Blue Ridge Parkway in 2007. The National Park System (www. nps.gov) began in 1872 with the founding of Yellowstone National Park and now administers more than 84 million acres that include scenic panoramas, prehistoric, historic, and scientific sites, and recreational areas. • In addition to the many other benefits of RVing, a study by PKF Consulting found that RV vacations generate less carbon dioxide (CO2) than traveling by plane or by car and staying in a hotel, thus leaving a smaller carbon footprint. Everybody needs recreation. Small wonder that over $1 trillion is spent in the U.S. each year in the recreation and leisure industry (including tourism). A long time ago, Miguel de Cervantes (1547–1616), author of Don Quixote, wrote, “The bow cannot always stand bent, nor can human frailty subsist

without some lawful recreation.” RVing fulfills the human need for recreation - lawfully and enjoyably. For a list of national recreation areas, go to http://www.infoplease.com/ ipa/A0004780.html to find them by state, go to http://www.nps.gov/. Bernice Beard is the author of the At Your Own Pace series of RVing books, including 301 Ways to Make RV Travel Safer, Easier, and More Fun. For additional information and tips that make life on the road more carefree, visit www.rvatyourownpace.com. MSN

The Way You Drive May Call For More Frequent Maintenance (NAPSI) - The way you maintain your car should take into account the conditions in which you drive. That’s the word from AAA, which says too many drivers underestimate the severity of their driving habits. As a result, they follow the wrong maintenance schedule. When polled recently by AAA, only 6 percent of motorists felt they did most of their driving under severe driving conditions. But when asked about the actual driving behaviors that create severe operating conditions, 62 percent of motorists admitted they drive their vehicle that way all or most of the time. Some of the conditions and behaviors that are considered severe include: • Driving on short trips of less than five miles in normal temperatures or less than 10 miles in freezing temperatures. • Driving at low speeds of less than 50 miles per hour for long distances. • Driving on roads that are dusty or muddy or have salt, sand or gravel spread on the surface. • Towing a trailer, carrying a camper (if a pickup truck) or transporting items on a roof rack or in a cartop carrier. “Manufacturers provide different maintenance recommendations for severe driving conditions because such operation increases wear on vehicle components and fluids,” said John Nielsen, director of AAA Approved Auto Repair and Auto Buying Services. Schedules for severe driving conditions recommend changing the vehicle’s fluids and filters more often, and include frequent inspections of certain components. AAA advises motorists to: • Read their owner’s manual and/or maintenance booklet. • Learn what the manufacturer considers normal and severe driving conditions for their vehicles. • Make an honest assessment of their driving habits. • Schedule service in accordance with the appropriate maintenance schedule. For additional assistance in evaluating driving conditions and determining proper maintenance intervals, motorists can visit any of the more than 8,000 AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities across North America. These shops have undergone an extensive inspection and meet stringent standards for quality, ability, integrity and professionalism. Since its founding in 1902, the AAA has been an advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. To learn more or locate a nearby Approved Auto Repair facility, visit AAA.com/ repair. MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 37

Planning your fly-fishing trip By Dale East When planning for your fly-fishing trip, several factors should be considered. A little time spent planning will make your fly-fishing trip more enjoyable and your time on the water more productive. In order to properly plan your fly-fishing trip, you will need to take a close look at... What type of fly-fishing do you prefer? One of the first things you need to consider when planning your fly-fishing trip is the type of fishing you want to do. Whether you are planning on tubing some alpine lakes and casting to big browns that are cruising near the bank. Or possibly, you prefer fishing meadow streams and beaver ponds for native cutthroat. Maybe your plans are to spend some time doing both. Regardless each will require a different plan of attack. This one decision will tell you what time of year to take your trip. You will also be able to tell what the climate will be, as well as hatches, needed fly patterns and equipment. It will also give you the information that will help you decide where to go

on your fly-fishing trips. Make a Checklist - I don’t think I could get through the day without using some kind of checklist. This is especially true when getting ready to travel. Whether you are driving or flying, it is a pain to get to your destination and realize that you left some key stuff at home. Most of us have had this experience. One time I left my extra waders at home, and the pair that I did bring started leaking. (Not good at 9000 feet and 38-degree water.) We were just lucky to find a fly shop open in a little town in the middle of nowhere. Needless to say, I always take an extra pair of waders with me on every fly-fishing trip. The point is, had I used a checklist, I would have had my spare waders on that trip as well. Now all that is left is to go through your checklist and make sure you have everything you need. Once you are sure it is all there, hit the road. And have a great fly-fishing trip. MSN

Keep the bites to a minimum Submitted by Julie Hollar, Choteau The best way to get rid of mosquitoes is Listerine, the original medicinal type. The Dollar Storetype works, too. I was at a deck party awhile back, and the bugs were having a ball biting everyone. A man at the party sprayed the lawn and deck floor with Listerine, and the little demons disappeared. The next year I filled a 4-ounce spray bottle

and used it around my chair whenever I saw mosquitoes. And, voila! That worked as well. It worked at a picnic where we sprayed the area around the food table, the children’s swing area, and the standing water nearby. During the summer, don’t leave home without it. MSN

Cupid’s Corner - continued from page 17 Are you a single, white male, 55+, healthy, active, and non-smoking, who doesn’t do drugs and only drinks socially? Do you want to be pampered, loved, trusted, cared for, and given lots of freedom? Do you enjoy travel, active living, grandkids, animals, and helping around the house? Are you able to spend winters in southern CA and summers in southwest MT with side trips all year? Would you like to spend your life with a sexy, attractive, fun-loving, vivacious, 5’3”, 125 lb, single, white female? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, please respond with a description, photo, and phone number or email address. Reply MSN, Dept 26624, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Single, white female is seeking a mature man late 40s to mid 60s. I am a Christian, but not overly religious. I enjoy outdoor activities, garage sales, going out to restaurants and movies, and snuggling. My hobbies also include art, crocheting, cooking, and massage. I don’t smoke and I only drink on special occasions. I’m looking for someone with whom I can share my life. I have a lot to give to the right person – hope to hear from you soon! Reply MSN, Dept 26625, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. Retired country boy, 6’, 200 lb, outdoor type. No tobacco, drugs, or drinking. I like hunting, fishing, camping, and traveling. I am in my 70s, have a nice home in northwest MT, and am not willing to relocate. I love the simple things in life and need lots of loving. Please respond with photo; I will answer. Reply MSN, Dept 26626, c/o Montana Senior News, Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403. MSN

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In this day and age, we see and hear advertisements all around us: on the street, television, radio, and internet. And few things are as easy to remember (and as hard to forget) as an advertising slogan or jingle. Our winning contest is from Pauline Haggerty of Miles City whose How Well Do You Remember These Old Advertising Slogans? quiz will bring back all those catchy ad phrases of old. Thank you, Pauline. Congratulations to Teri Moses of Lakeside who submitted the winning answers to the Montana Counties quiz that appeared in our June/July 2010 issue. Thank you, Teri. Two $25 cash prizes are awarded from the “Contest Corner” in each issue of the Montana

Senior News. One prize goes to the person who 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 most 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 Montana Senior News, P.O. Box 3363, Great Falls, MT 59403, or email to montsrnews@bresnan.net by September 10, 2010 for our October/November 2010 edition. Be sure to work the crossword puzzle on our website www.montanaseniornews.com.

How Well Do You Remember These Old Advertising Slogans? Submitted by Pauline Haggerty, Miles City Below are 20 products and their advertising slogans. On a numbered sheet of paper, write the letter of the brand name or product that you think goes with each numbered slogan and email or drop them in the mail to us. The winner will receive a $25 prize. Good luck! 1. “You’ll wonder where the yellow went when you brush your teeth with ______.” 2. “Hasn’t scratched yet,”________. 3. “Trust your car to the man who wears the star,”________. 4. “Keep that schoolgirl complexion,”________. 5. “________, for the smile of beauty; ________for the smile of health.” 6. “Drink a bite to eat at 10, 2, and 4,”________. 7. “Sleep like a kitten,”________. 8. “Nature in the raw is seldom mild,”________. 9. “Not a cough in a carload,”________. 10. “His master’s voice,”________. 11. “A little dab’ll do ya,”________. 12. “Fifty million times a day, at home, at work or on the way, there’s nothing like a ________, nothing

like a ________.” 13. “If it hasn’t a hole, it isn’t a ________.” 14. “Don’t put a cold in your pocket,”________. 15. “Clotheslines are for the birds,”________. 16. “Go ________ - and leave the driving to us.” 17. “Built to last 100,000 miles,”________. 18. “The best part of wakin’ up, is ________ in your cup.” 19. “I’d walk a mile for a ________.” 20. “Exciting things happen when it’s ________.” A. Lucky Strike cigarettes B. Westinghouse dryers C. Life Saver D. Palmolive E. Evening in Paris F. Greyhound G. C&O Railway H. Victor and RCA Victor products I. Pepsodent

J. Texaco K. Folgers L. Coca-Cola, Coke M. Old Gold cigarettes N. Ipana, Sal Hepatica O. Bon Ami P. Camel (cigarettes) Q. Kleenex tissues R. Pontiac S. Brylcreem T. Dr. Pepper MSN

Answers to “How Well Do You Know Your Montana Counties?” Submitted by Shirley Barrick, Lewistown 1. F - Toole 11. Y - Lewis & Clark 2. G - Richland 12. FF - Big Horn 3. P - Hill 13. B - Sheridan 4. W - Deer Lodge 14. L - Custer 5. N - Flathead 15. O - Prairie 6. X - Glacier 16. C - Lincoln 7. AA - Rosebud 17. Z - Gallatin 8. Q - Liberty 18. H - Jefferson 9. D - Valley 19. R - Madison 10. M - Yellowstone 20. A - Cascade

Hope you are having a great summer and enjoying the contests we have for you.

21. EE - Roosevelt 22. BB - Stillwater 23. J - Granite 24. K - Sanders 25. S - Mineral 26. E - Broadwater

27. CC - Sweet Grass 28. T - Phillips 29. DD - Garfield 30. V - Musselshell 31. I - Missoula 32. U - Daniel MSN

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Across

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12. Big Momma’s House actress, Long 13. First woman Speaker of the House 14. Earp’s first name 15. Shirley Dinsdale received the first of these awards in 1949 17. Negative vote 18. First bank to introduce online accounts (last name) 19. Jedi in Star Wars, first name 21. Title of address 22. Football position, for short 25. Time period 26. First African American woman to win an Oscar for Best Actress, first name 28. Her first role in a movie was in “The Ice Storm” in 1997, ___ Holmes 31. The City of Savanna was the first steamship to cross the Atlantic and sailed from this state 33. Approval word 34. State named after Queen Elizabeth I 36. In the center 37. “Extra Terrestrial” star, Barrymore 39. They won the first game played at Edison International baseball field 40. Send-off 41. Top grades 42. State where the first traffic light was set up in 1914 44. First woman to serve as Chief Justice on the Supreme Court,

Sandra __ O’Connor 46. Correct a text 51. Keep your __ on the ball 53. First state admitted to the Union 54. First and only U.S. President to resign in office 55. Come first 56. Admire, in the 60’s 57. Woman who made the first transatlantic flight, ___ Earhart 58. Agreement

Down 1. Neil Armstrong was the first (4 words) 2. First defending Cy Young award winner to have a home run hit off him at the first at bat by a rookie, ____ Johnson 3. Cow chow 4. Autonation Inc ticker symbol on NYSE 6. First American city to have an aquarium (2 words) 7. First President to live in the White House 8. Lead-in to a first meeting 9. First woman to lead the Indy 500 11. First U.S. Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (2 words) 15. Each, abbr. 16. British sports car 18. 1984 was the first appearance of this horror character 20. Jazz King 21. Milliliter, for short 23. First baby sound? 24. “Fearless” star 27. Came in first


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

29. First African American coach to win the Superbowl (2 words) 30. First woman 32. Not here 35. Mode or carte (2 words) 38. Primary color 40. First woman to get well-known as a “ten”,

By Sue Hansen I have always believed a marriage should be based not only on unconditional love and mutual trust, but also on the principle that whatever is mine is his and vice versa. However, this notion did not seem to apply when we moved. In arranging the living room furniture, I instructed two burly movers to place “my husband’s chair near the huge picture window, my chair beside his and our couch along the opposite wall.” Listening to myself, I suddenly realized some things in our household were not necessarily shared. This practice of verbally attaching ownership to furnishings has been around for a long time. My grandmothers had their wooden rockers alongside the recliners belonging to my grandfathers. And my parents still occupy their matching swivel chairs, with a manly footstool in front of one to distinguish who sits where. As a child, I was allowed to sit in one of these chairs as long as the rightful resident was not in the room. But if one should make an appearance, I would have to vacate and find another place to sit. This unspoken rule was never questioned. Though certain reigning relatives enjoy individual thrones, there is one piece of furniture over which no family member has jurisdiction - the couch. Used by all, its presence offers comfort,

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 41

__ Derek 49. 1897 was when this form of transport was 43. Film actress and singer Dunne first built 45. First man in the Bible 50. First pro baseball team (last name) 47. This state flew its first Flag of Indepen52. Hi! dence in 1835 53. Badly lit 48. The copper version of this coin was first 55. State named after the first President MSN brought into existence in the US in 1792

The Family Couch companionship, and, on occasion, conflict. Arguments have been known to erupt between those potatoes who wish to perch and those who insist on the prone position. And unlike a chair, which is simply a place to park our posterior, a couch provides a variety of services every family needs. Socially, couches draw all visitors into its cushy folds like a magnet. Its welcoming nature enables us to sit back, relax, and relish the moment without worrying about time’s slipping away. And couples can even experience the first twinge of love. Sitting side by side with hands entwined, it is hard not to feel a certain closeness with someone special. This sense of togetherness also keeps professional shutterbugs busy. A couch is a silent reminder to snap group shots of those we love. No other place can capture the unity of a family posed on their sofa. Besides being catalysts for bonding, couches are considered good medicine. Many times, overcome with illness, I have sought refuge on our couch. Huddled under a warm blanket, I knew that whatever my ailment it would not last long. Sofa sojourns are always temporary whereas confinements to bed suggest lengthy stays. Even naps,

once dreaded during my formative years and now sorely missed as an adult, were more refreshing when taken on a couch. Couches also furnish a means for both entertainment and education. Where else would an avid reader of great novels or a devoted fan of movie classics curl up? And whenever parents wish to display their oratorical skills, the cushions often held the attentive offspring. Whether discussing family merits or lecturing on the difference between right and wrong – as was the case for me – sitting on the sofa’s edge required a serious expression, hands folded on lap, and back ramrod straight. Now that I have my own home, it is apparent I have subconsciously inherited the tradition of labeling furniture. Like my grandmothers, I have a rocking chair I consider all mine. Though I do not mind if anyone sits a spell in it, I also expect him or her to move upon my entrance to the living room. But our couch, like those from years past, will continue to serve everyone - to beckon and embrace family and friends in times of happiness and sorrow, camaraderie and solitude. For despite our constantly changing world, couches have remained the same. They can be upholstered, but never uprooted, and they will always be the center seat of family life. MSN

Sunday School Kids - You never know what kids are going to say! Submitted by Julie Hollar Brantley Untimely Answered Prayer - During the minister’s prayer one Sunday, there was a loud whistle from one of the back pews. Tommy’s mother was horrified. She pinched him into silence and, after church, asked, “Tommy, whatever made you do such a thing?” Tommy answered soberly, “I asked God to teach me to whistle, and He did!” All Men, All Girls - When my daughter, Kelli, said her bedtime prayers, she would bless every family member, every friend, and every animal (current and past). For several weeks, after we had

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finished the nightly prayer, Kelli would say, “And all “I don’t need to,” the boy replied. girls.” This soon became part of her nightly routine, “Of course, you do.” his mother insisted. “We to include this closing. always say a prayer before eating at our house.” My curiosity got the best of me and I asked “At our house.” Johnny said. “But this is Grandher, “Kelli, why do you always add the part about ma’s house and she knows how to cook!” MSN all girls?” She replied, “Because everybody always finishes their prayers by saying ‘All Men’!” Say A Prayer - Little Johnny and his family were having Sunday dinner at his Grandmother’s house. Everyone was seated around the table as the food was being served. When Johnny received his plate, he started eating right away. “Johnny! Please wait until we say our prayer,” said his mother.


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From Hollywood To Home New Sound Format Offers Richer Experience (NAPSI) The latest in digital cinema technology adds to Hollywood’s creative toy box to bring a more immersing sensory experience to viewers at home. Moviegoers are quickly becoming accustomed to enjoying the extra visual dimension of 3-D images, but now the latest audio innovation will give them a better, more realistic surround sound experience to match. You may have already experienced the new audio format, Dolby Surround 7.1, in select movie theatres with the release of Disney Pixar’s Toy Story 3. The format supplies a richer sound experience for 2-D and 3-D digital cinema releases alike. The format gives content creators increased control over audio placement and spatial effects when orchestrating sound design for their movies. The ability to combine this new audio format with the visual depth of crisp digital movies allows content creators to immerse the audience deeper into the movie than ever before, and with dramatic realism. The new audio format goes beyond the standard 5.1 channels currently equipped in movie theatres by enabling two additional surround zones in the rear of the theatre. Four separate surround zones improve sound panning, localization, definition and spatiality to better complement the on-screen action. Those who already have 7.1 systems in the home will be capable of experiencing feature film

content when it comes to video on Blu-ray Disc. Nothing changes at all with the home speaker configuration as it maps perfectly with the theatrical 7.1 layout. Until now, theatrical soundtracks that made their way to the home as 7.1 offerings were originally created as 5.1 mixes for the theatre, and then remixed during a subsequent post-production session. The process involves remixing the dialogue, music and effects elements, or in some cases, adding new sounds or affects, to make use of the two additional channels in the 7.1 layout. Although this delivered a 7.1 discrete experience, the mixes did not always reflect the intent of the sound designers who developed the original feature film mix. As more studios adopt the format, and sound designers and mixers start working with discrete 7.1 channels to support the theatrical experience, content will make full use of the extra channels to support the story, immersing viewers with ambiences, direct effects and movement of sounds all around them. Whether experienced in the theatre or the home, the effects will be exactly as the filmmakers intended. Founded in 1965 and best known for highquality audio and surround sound, Dolby creates innovations that enrich entertainment at the movies, at home or on the go. Visit www.dolby.com for more information. MSN

Things will be hoppin’ at the Ravalli County Fair The 2010 Ravalli County Fair is just around the corner (September 1-4) at the Ravalli County Fairgrounds in Hamilton in the heart of western Montana’s Beautiful Bitterroot Valley. Our local fair is well known and loved for its family atmosphere and its cultural and historical ties to rural Montana life. We feature a wide variety of entertainment, exhibits, carnival rides, community food vendors, activities, business and artist booths, rodeo performances, music & more – truly something for everyone. We open Wednesday with two bands performing in the arena at no extra charge. The Polyjesters from Canada blend witty lyrics with wry humor and old-time bluegrass with a topping of jazz swing. Chance McKinney, hometown boy and 2010 CMT’s Music City Madness Winner will complete the evening along with his band Crosswire. Thursday night is the popular Bull-A-Rama, with Friday and Saturday nights featuring NRA Rodeo! There is plenty of free parking in our north lot where you can hitch a ride on our horse drawn trolley to get to the heart of the fair. For a complete schedule of events, visit www.ravallicountyfair.org or call 406-363-3411. As we say in the Bitterroot, “Everyone loves the fair – hope we see you there!” MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Where Are They Now? Louis Jourdan By Marshall J. Kaplan Best known as the suave, debonair, and charming French leading man of films from Hollywood’s Golden Age, Louis Jourdan is currently enjoying the golden years of his retirement in – where else – the south of France. Louis Jourdan was born on June 19, 1919 in Marseille, France. Although educated in Britain and Turkey, he chose to study acting in France at the famous Ecole Dramatique. Jourdan made his onscreen acting debut in 1939, continuing to appear in French romantic comedies until 1942. At this time during WWII, Jourdan’s father was arrested by the Gestapo and Louis then spent the next three years in the French underground. By the time Jourdan emerged, his looks were even more dashing. He caught the attention of David O. Selznick who brought Louis to Hollywood to appear in the Alfred Hitchcock film, The Paradine Case (1947, with Gregory Peck and Alida Valli). Jourdan’s arrival in Hollywood was a positive experience. He made many friends within the industry through a shared love of the game croquet. In turn, Jourdan’s likeability (along with his looks and acting skills), landed him leading roles in “A” pictures over the next 12 years. Highlights include Madame Bovary (1949 with Jennifer Jones), Three Coins in the Fountain (1954), The Swan (1956

with Grace Kelly), and Can-Can (1960). His most memorable film role was as the bored playboy lover in Vincent Minnelli’s 1958 hit, Gigi (with Leslie Caron and Maurice Chevalier). Jourdan then returned to Europe and over the next few years appeared in mediocre films. Not much coaxing was needed to have him return to Hollywood, yet that too produced somewhat disappointing films, with the exception of The VIP’s (1963). From 1966 until 1992, Jourdan has only appeared in 21 films – both madefor-TV and feature films, most notably in Count Dracula (1977) and as the villain, “Kamal Khan” in the James Bond film, Octupussy (1983, opposite Roger Moore). Sadly, Jourdan’s son died in 1981 from a drug overdose. Although Jourdan is con-

sidered to be a classic Hollywood star, he somewhat belittles his own career saying, “There are actors, such as I, who made important careers for a long, long period just by taking the parts that Cary Grant turned down!” C’est la vie, Louis! MSN

Creative Genealogical Sleuthing At MonDak The MonDak Heritage Center is more than an art gallery and history museum. We also have a very active genealogical research center that receives not only local requests for information, but also research requests from around the United States. A recent challenging request included very little information, only a name and years, to find a headstone. After some creative sleuthing, the MonDak Heritage Center researchers found the missing obituary and sent the family the correct information so they found the headstone they were looking for. The dates recorded by the family were incorrect, which is why they were unable to locate the grave of their ancestor. We received a note from Vivian in California stating, “I found her gravestone! Filling in this significant piece has helped complete my family and the families of her other children as well. Again, thank you so very much. I was

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so happy I cried when I read her obituary and it takes a lot to elicit that response from me...â&#x20AC;? The MonDak Heritage Center is pleased to offer frequently changing art exhibits and regional history displays. Admission to the museum and

research requests are FREE, although we do appreciate your generous donations. For more information, call 406-433-3500 or visit www.mondakheritagecenter.org. MSN

Bite-Size Socializing For Less (NAPSI) After a ball game, during family movie night or simply while enjoying a gathering with neighbors, having a great time doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mean having to put forth a great deal of effort or spend a lot of money. It helps if you keep things simple - and bite sized. Whether you invite people over or if friends just show up at your door, the key to being a relaxed host is to plan. Have a menu in mind and stock up on foods and disposable dinnerware when they go on sale so you can feed a crowd at a momentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s notice. Here are some ideas to try: Appetizers: Start with easy-to-eat nibbles to kick off the festivities. â&#x20AC;˘ Dips are simple to prepare and appeal to a crowd. Try homemade toasted pita chips drizzled with olive oil and herbs as dippers along with the traditional chips and seasonal veggies. â&#x20AC;˘ Skewer grape tomatoes, cucumber wedges, chunks of lettuce and slices of bell pepper. Serve with salad dressings on the side. â&#x20AC;˘ Set up a bruschetta bar. Pile a platter with sliced, toasted garlic bread. Place bowls of various toppings nearby for guests to make their own: chopped tomatoes, basil and olive oil; flavored

hummus with feta; sun-dried tomatoes and black olives; marinated artichokes and tapenade. Main courses: Small servings of entrĂŠes allow your guests to sample a variety of options. â&#x20AC;˘ Sliders are a fun twist to their larger cousins. Try minibuns filled with BBQ pork or beef or chicken salad that can be homemade or purchased. Serve with coleslaw, chopped green olives, caramelized onions and more. â&#x20AC;˘ Mini-meatballs are a big treat. Buy or make them in advance and freeze them until needed. Then serve them on buns or with toothpicks alongside a variety of sauces: barbecue, salsa, honey mustard, horseradish cream, curry, chutney, and marmalade. Dessert: Give guests creamy frozen treats without messy scoops, bowls and spoons. Instead, try poppable, munchable, bite-sized Dibs - frozen vanilla bites covered in a crunchy milk chocolatey shell. These are available in Vanilla and NestlĂŠ Crunch flavors in a convenient 140-bites value pack that keeps them fresh and ready to share with a houseful of guests. For more information, visit www.dibs.com. MSN

Discover the artist within you at Paris Gibson At Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art we Explore Imagine with one of a kind, public receptions, and Art Share lectures with regional, national, and international artists. We also Encourage Curiosity by providing a barrier free, inviting and nurturing environment for people of all ages and abilities to learn about and explore their artistic expressions. And we Connect our Communities by bringing people together by offering exciting special events, providing studio space, and creating partnerships with other community organizations and more. We invite you to join us for Clay Day a celebration of the Pottery Artist. This free community event will include a pottery sale, silent auction, and a raffle. The afternoon will be filled with wheel throwing demonstrations, and opportunities to try the wheel yourself. Enjoy clay hand building demonstrations and join local pottery artist Judy Ericksen as she demonstrates the ancient art of Raku firing. This year the event is being held on September 11 from 1-4 p.m. Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art is delighted to offer free admission, thanks to Farmers Union Insurance, free after school art programs K-12, free senior art classes, paid art classes from the budding or advanced artist in all of us, art tours, artistsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; receptions and so much more. Preserving the Square is vital to our community because Art is for Everyone! Call 406-727-8255 for more information! MSN

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AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 47

Hockaday Announces August & September Senior Tour & Tea Days The Hockaday Museum of Art invites seniors to enjoy Senior Tour & Tea Days held on the second Thursday of each month (August 12 & September 9). Admission is free to those 60 and older from 10 a.m. â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 5 p.m. with complimentary coffee, tea, and cookies. Guests meet at the front desk for a docent-led gallery tour that begins promptly at 10:30 a.m. Senior Groups may call for special arrangements. This summer, guests will enjoy the celebra-

tion of the Glacier National Park Centennial at the Hockaday by experiencing the historic John Fery: Artist of the Rockies and 100 Years, 100 Days: Photography by Chris Peterson exhibits. Twenty-three of John Feryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s paintings adorn the Hockadayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s North and East Galleries and welcome patrons in the new Entrance Gallery. The Great Northern Railroad commissioned John Feryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s work to attract visitors to the area, which contributed to the creation of Glacier Na-

tional Park. Chris Peterson, photographer and editor of Glacier Park Magazine, displays photos taken in 2009 for the 100 Years, 100 Days project commemorating Glacierâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Centennial. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss the Hockadayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s newly re-opened Museum Gift Shop, which features twenty juried Montana artists and offers original and unique works in a variety of media. For more information, visit www.HockadayMuseum.org or call 406-755-5268. MSN

Backyard Movies - 5 Great Ways to Enjoy Your Backyard Movie Theater By Kendall Parker Although many people are finding out that hosting a backyard movie is a lot of fun for everyone, what most people are just figuring out is that there are many more ways to enjoy your backyard theater than just to throw a movie in the DVD player. Here are some fun things that people are doing: Karaoke Night - Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve had a good time seeing yourself on the TV in your family room or at the local bar but how about on a big screen in your backyard? If you like karaoke or just want to give it a try this is the way to do it. Just hook up the karaoke machine, plug a camcorder into the projector, and start singing. You will be amazed at how much fun it is to see yourself on the big screen. Theme Movie Night - Sometimes the newest releases do not hold a candle to the time tested classics. Watch the classics with a twist and make it a theme night. Have a cookout, put on your best western outfit, throw in a western classic, and have a western theme night. Canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t get enough of the Kung Fu movies? Order Chinese food and throw in a Bruce Lee Movie. Remember to make everyone come wearing his or her favorite kung fu outfit or karate outfit. Caddyshack is an all-time classic and you can show it after a golf outing with the guys. Of course, you should show up in the ugliest golf clothes you can pull out of your closet. The best part of the night is that the movies do not need to be first runs and it is all about the food, friends,

fun things to do with your backyard movie theater, and the outfits. Birthday Parties - Inflatables and game rooms go to http://www.coloradobackyardmovies.com are great but how fun would it be to have a back- and start having some fun tonight. Article Source: http://EzineArticles. yard movie for your grandkids birthday. Not only would it be a fun and different activity but if you com/?expert=Kendall_Parker. MSN get the right movie, they will be occupied for several hours and you can get some time to relax too. Block Party - Is there a better way to get your neighbors together than having a block party and showing a backyard movie. You do not even need to use your backyard if you live on a dead end street or if there is a park close by. Have everyone pitch in with the food and drink and all you will have to do is bring the screen and projector. As a warning, you might have to schedule several movie nights to accommodate all the suggestions that you will get from each neighbor. Game Night - You do not just have to show movies on your backyard movie screen. With a good multimedia projector, it is perfect for game nights with the kids. Rockband, Xbox, and PlayStation games make it a fun night that everyone can enjoy. These are only a few ideas that you can do when you have a backyard movie SEPTEMBER 1-4, 2010 screen and projector. For more ideas and Wednesday Night: Music In The Arena Thursday Night: Bull-A-Rama Friday a &S Saturday a aturd ay Nights: Rodeo a

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Classic Cocktail Party Themes By Rene Thompson Cocktail parties are a classic way to celebrate a birthday, anniversary, holiday, or any other occasion. Cocktail parties are fun gatherings and a great way for people to enjoy a social afternoon or evening, presenting the perfect opportunity to get all dressed up and escape the everyday world. Particularly popular during the 1950s and 1960s were costume parties or themed cocktail parties. A central theme can be reflected in everything from attire to decor to drinks and food. Here are a few classic cocktail party ideas for your next soiree: Old Hollywood or 1920s flapper. Cocktail parties always conjure up visions of elegance, so why not play up this idea by choosing this classy theme? Play jazz music and invite female guests to dress in flapper dresses or long cocktail dresses, and the men in black tie or striped suits. Pair it with sophisticated cocktails straight from this era, including plenty of concoctions with gin. James Bond. Plenty of martinis will be served, and guests have the chance to dress up like James Bond or a Bond girl. Make sure that you know how to make a James Bond-style martini (â&#x20AC;&#x153;shaken, not stirredâ&#x20AC;?) and brush up on your movie quotes. Casino Night. This cocktail party is tailor-made for a fun-filled evening. Set up a poker tournament or other casino-style games, decorate in black, white, and red, and serve classic cocktails. Invite guests to dress as high rollers. Do not forget to stock up on cards and poker chips!

Black Tie affair or Black & White Party. This simple and classic cocktail theme is known for being a rather formal event. Invite guests to dress in black and white, and decorate the room with small punches of color. Pair this party with classic cocktail drinks. This party theme is very easy to do on a small budget because of the simple color theme. Tiki cocktail parties are some of the most unique cocktail parties out there. If you are looking for something a little unusual, think about decorating with tiki masks and statues and a thatched tiki hut bar. Fruit and chicken skewers make the perfect cocktail party food for this theme, while drinks should include pineapple juice and other fruity flavors. If you have an outdoor space, add tiki torches to give your tiki cocktail party a tropical ambience. Regardless of the theme you choose, a cocktail party is the perfect chance to match your decor, drinks, and food for a fun evening. You might even want to request that your guests arrive in a costume. Rather than having a full bar, opt for one or two signature drinks. For example, martinis for James Bond, or mai tais for a tiki party. Party food should also fit the theme, such as crab rangoon for tiki or black and white food for your Black & White Party. Stick to finger foods and small bites so that guests can mingle as they eat. Throwing a cocktail party takes some imagination and creativity, but if you put in the effort, everyone is sure to have a great time. MSN


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Those “Legal Entanglements” of Marriage Offer Considerable Benefits over Just Living Together By Jonathan J. David, Senior Wire Dear Jonathan: My wife died a few years back. I have been seeing a woman for some time now whose husband is also deceased. Since we get along great, we have decided to move in together and live as husband and wife without the legal entanglements of being married. We have no secrets and completely trust each other, and have decided that if either one of us dies, that person’s estate will be divided between the one of us who survives and the decedent’s children. Can we accomplish this with a will or do we need something more? Do you have any other recommendations? Jonathan Says: Making out a last will and testament is a good idea because if either one of you dies without having made a will, the survivor would not be entitled to any of the decedent’s assets under state law. This would be true no matter how long you have been together. On the other hand, if you were to have been married only a few months and then one of you died, the survivor would be entitled to a share of that person’s estate under state law.

Besides stating how you want your estate to be distributed on death, you will want to include who is to act as the personal representative or executor of your probate estate. Probate is required any time you die leaving assets in your name alone. If it is your intention to have your partner act in that capacity, then you will most certainly want to name her in the will. It is also a good idea to name a backup to act if your partner is unable to act for whatever reason. It would also make sense to add an incontestability provision that basically states if anyone contests the will, they will lose whatever share they have as a beneficiary under the will. Typically, this type of provision is not enforceable if a person has a legitimate reason to contest the will; however, if you want to discourage people from contesting the will, this type of provision might serve you well. Besides a last will and testament, I recommend that each of you prepare a durable financial power of attorney and healthcare power of attorney wherein you name each other as agent in case either of you is incapacitated. By doing this, you are formally stating that you want your

partner to represent you if you cannot act on your own behalf. This avoids involving a court for the purpose of naming someone (who could be someone other than your partner) to act on your behalf as your attorney-in-fact or agent in financial and healthcare matters. If you would like to avoid probate at your death, then you may want to consider setting up a trust in conjunction with your will and re-titling your assets in the name of that trust. With a trust, as with a will, you would name who you want to receive your assets upon death. One of the differences between a will and a trust is that a trust is a private document, whereas a will is a public document. Further, before the assets can be distributed pursuant to a will, the estate needs to be probated. However with a trust, since probate is not required, assets can be distributed more quickly. Please keep in mind that there may be some gift tax ramifications if you decide to set up a joint trust with your partner as opposed to each of you setting up your own individual trusts. Going back to your comment that you want to avoid the “legal entanglements” of marriage, you should consider the benefits of being married. First a surviving spouse by law has certain benefits that a surviving partner does not. For example, as previously indicated, a surviving spouse is an heir of the decedent spouse’s estate. So if for some reason a will is not made, the surviving spouse would be entitled to a share of the decedent spouse’s estate; a surviving nonspouse partner is not entitled to any portion of the estate. Further, a surviving spouse has priority under the law to act on behalf of the other spouse in certain capacities, which may Call me to learn more about this important include, acting as personal representative of financial option from MetLife Bank. the decedent spouse’s estate, as guardian Rob Bickel, MetLife Bank Reverse Mortgage Consultant or conservator for a 406-370-7424 disabled spouse, and in some cases, even acting as the disabled spouse’s agent or patient advocate absent a All loans are subject to property approval. Certain conditions and fees apply. Mortgage financing provided by MetLife Bank, N.A., Equal Housing Lender. written durable financial © 2010 METLIFE, INC. L0809052954[exp0810][All States][DC] power of attorney or healthcare power of at-

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torney. An unmarried partner has none of those rights. Third, a surviving spouse has other benefits such as the right to receive social security benefits, being covered under the other spouseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s health insurance plan, and being named as a beneficiary under the other spouseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s retirement plan. Further, only a surviving spouse can rollover retirement accounts, such as IRAs and 401ks, to his or her own retirement account. An unmarried partner has none of these benefits. Fourth, if spouses have a combined estate worth $4 million dollars or more, they can enter into tax planning arrangements to minimize or eliminate the estate tax that would be due at the second death. This type of tax planning is not available to non-spouses. Finally, although non-spouses can enter into gifting arrangements between them, the amounts of the gifts they can make to each other is limited and if the gifts are in excess of $12,000 per year, a gift tax is incurred and a federal gift tax

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 51

return must be filed; spouses, on the other hand, can give to each other as much as they want in the way of assets, gift tax free, and without the filing of a federal gift tax return. I realize your question was not as to whether you should marry, but I felt you should have at least a general understanding of some issues you should consider if you decide not to get married. I recommend that you meet with an estate planning attorney in your area to review these issues in more detail, as well as the various tax ramifications to you and your partner if you remain unmarried, so that the two of you can make an educated decision as to how best to proceed. Good luck. The information contained in this column is not to be construed as legal advice or legal representation and should not be relied upon as such. Further, the information provided is not state specific and certain laws and customary practices will vary from state to state. If legal advice or legal representation is desired, please consult with an attorney in your locale. MSN

The Meanest Mom In The World Submitted by Minnie Aken, Yuma, Arizona Do you remember when kids said they had the meanest mom in the world? â&#x20AC;&#x153;My Mom lets me do this, why doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t your Mom let you?â&#x20AC;? Paul Harvey read a letter some time ago on one of his broadcasts about the meanest mother in the world. The woman he was quoting wrote: Surely mine was the meanest mother in the world. While other kids ate candy for breakfast, I had to have cereal and toast. When others were enjoying pop and candy for lunch, I had to eat a sandwich and fruit. I was not alone in my suffering; my sister and two brothers had the same cruel mother I had. She insisted on knowing where we were ALL the time. She had to know who our friends were and what we were doing, and if we said we would be home in an hour, that meant an hour â&#x20AC;&#x201C; or less â&#x20AC;&#x201C; not more. When we were young and disobeyed, our tyrannical mother would strike us â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with a switch â&#x20AC;&#x201C; imagine! And now you begin to see how really mean she was. But even this physical brutality was not the worst. We had to be in bed early, get up early. We never got to sleep until noon like our friends. While they slept, we worked. I mean my mother broke every child labor law there is; we were not yet sixteen when we had to wash dishes, make beds, help cook, all sorts of cruel things. Surely that meanest mother must have lain awake nights thinking up mean things for us to have to do. She demanded that we tell the truth even if it hurt, and sometimes it hurt like everything. By the time we were teenagers, life became increasingly unbearable. Our dates were not allowed to toot the horn to bring us running as other girlsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; dates did. My cruel mother embarrassed us by insisting that our dates come to the door and get us. And where some of our friends got to date when they were twelve, my cruel mother refused to let us date until we were fifteen and then only for school functions. My sister, brothers, and I finally got away from my cruel mother and could do as we pleased, but by then we were helplessly warped and twisted in our behavior. We grew up taking baths and tithing to the church and we never learned not to. None of us ever had the opportunities other young people have â&#x20AC;&#x201C; to wreck schoolhouses, drop out of school, or do drugs. Each of us went to school â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and learned; went to work â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and earned. Each of us got married once â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and still is. It is a rut. We keep going in the direction in which we have been pushed. And my meanest mother in the world pushed us into this bathing, learning, earning, giving, living, and loving. MSN

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Bryce Canyon’s fascinating formations captivate By Dianna Troyer only place we hadn’t gone was Bryce, so one spring Decisions, decisions. A map of Bryce Canyon day, after we had finished managing a Hickory National Park in southern Utah showed so many Farms store in St. George for a winter season, we hiking trails with intriguing names to pick from: came up here. When we looked around, we were Fairyland Loop, Peekaboo Loop, Mossy Cave, overwhelmed with the scenery. I came into the shop Queen’s Garden, Nahere, told the manager we vajo Loop… had retail experience, and My husband Eric, asked if he needed some our daughter Jenna, and seasonal employees. He I were talking about our told us, ‘You’re hired.’” options while stretchWhile Lyle works in ing our legs at Ruby’s the rock shop, Shanna Inn Canyon Rock Shop sells jewelry across the near the park entrance road at Ruby’s Inn. after a beautiful drive “We have a ball south. A shop clerk, Lyle here,” Lyle says. “We Andersen, zeroed in on still ooh and aah a lot at me. the scenery, take photos, “Are you really from hike, and ride horses. This Pocatello?” he asked, place is incredible. We laughing and looking have access to millions at the Montana t-shirt I of acres of land around was wearing. He lived here, and back roads lead south of Pocatello in you to places with totally Arimo and farmed in Ardifferent formations than bon Valley during sumother nearby places. We mer. “You wouldn’t benever get tired of it. In the lieve how many people evenings, we’ll either hike from Montana come or drive around looking Bryce Canyon National Park in southern Utah is a popular down here.” destination for hikers and families from around the world. for elk, deer, or antelope. Lyle and his wife, [Photo by Dianna Troyer] We’ve even seen a few Shanna, who are semicougars.” retired, started working in the park in 2007. The Lyle assured us it did not matter which trails we intense orange canyon country dotted with deep chose during the next couple of days. “You won’t green pines, firs, and junipers captivated them. be disappointed.” For years of family vacations, Lyle conOn the first day, we opted to hike down into the fessed, they drove right canyon along the 2.9-mile Queen’s Garden/Navajo on past the signs along Loop Trail. We hiked with dozens of other people, Interstate 15 for Bryce many from Europe and the Far East, judging from and instead headed for their conversations. With murmurs of oohs and other vacation destina- aahs at the fantastic shapes, we shared a univertions farther south, such sal language and appreciation for the countless as Zion National Park, towering stony red and orange spires, pinnacles, Cedar Breaks, or the chimneys, and even Queen Victoria sitting on her Grand Canyon. throne. “It seemed like the Signs provided scientific explanations of how eons of erosion and weathering caused the formations, but we liked the more entertaining explanation from the native Paiutes. According to tribal lore, the formations, or hoodoos, were created when Coyote simply dealt with evil people by turn(Cont’d on page 64)

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Finding and Financing A New Assisted Living Home By Patrick M. Kennedy, Senior Wire When you bought that first home or moved into your first apartment, remember all the places you thoroughly examined. Well, choosing the right assisted living facility should be the same involved and carefully thought out process. Choosing the correct assisted living facility is vital because you will probably be living there for some time. What is an assisted living facility? First, it is a facility that provides care for people who want some help with activities of daily living, who are not helpless, but wish to remain as independent as possible. It is sort of the middle ground between independent living and a nursing home, if that becomes necessary. It should offer 24-hour supervision and an array of support services, with more privacy and space than most nursing homes, and at a lower cost. Approximately 33,000 assisted living facilities are operating in the U.S. today, and the number of residents living in each facility can range from a few to 300, but most commonly between 25 and 120. Assisted living facilities also go by other names, such as personal care homes, residential care facilities, domiciliary care, sheltered housing, community residences, residential care, personal care, adult foster care, and many more. What should every assisted care facility provide? The basics must include help with the tasks of daily living like bathing, eating, dressing, grooming, toileting, and just getting around. But look beyond these basics. Check out their community activities like golf, card games, social events such as dances, outings and tours â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and transportation to outings and other activities beyond the walls of the rooms. Are community services such as laundry and dry cleaning available on site or nearby, and do they provide transportation for shopping and medical trips? Are there medications or some kind of medical service, a nurse or qualified medical person, or an emergency service or system available on site? Consider the envi-

ronment of the facility. Do individuals have personal independence to go and do what they want? Is it in a neighborhood where you want to live, such as close to local parks and nature walks? Of course, you may want to live in an urban environment. The people you will be sharing the community with are significant. Are they active, invalid, older or younger than you, have a similar background and upbringing, religious affiliation, and does it look like these people could become your friends? Consider also whether they allow pets? Can you bring your own car and furniture? Is it clean and does it smell clean? Does it have good visitor facilities when friends and family come to see you? Does it make you feel comfortable? Beyond the facility itself, financial considerations are very important. Can you afford it? How long can you afford it? There are too many stories of people being evicted from assisted living homes because they have run out of savings and the facility will not accept Medicaid payments. It is best to consult your financial adviser or someone who knows your financial situation. Assisted living costs represent a significant expense many people will face in the later years of life. In a recent survey the national average for a one-bedroom assisted living apartment is about $2,900 per month or nearly $35,000 per year. This cost has grown by four to five percent over the last five years, and probably will not stop. Of course, nursing homes are an option, but much more expensive - nearly double that of an assisted living facility. If you own a house, then selling it for the profit is one consideration. This can be implemented now when you are a little younger or later when you need it. But if you wait too long and need the money immediately, in todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s real estate market, it may not be a quick sale. In that case, you may need to take out a bridge loan to finance your immediate needs. A second consideration is to take out a reverse mortgage. You will sacrifice a percentage of your homeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s equity to enjoy a lump sum payment or monthly income. This can be helpful for a homeowner who needs to fund assisted living costs for their partner as they remain at home. Be careful of the fees associated with a reverse mortgage, which can be excessive. Medicaid is available, but it has asset and income restrictions that may leave you unqualified to apply. And, it does not pay for everything in long-term care. It does not cover room and board in an assisted living facility,


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

which can be 75-80% of the monthly fees, which will be up to you to pay. It covers only the service expenses of the facility. It is a marginally reliable source to depend upon for financing your assisted living. One hint is to not spend all your savings to qualify for this assistance. Medicare and Medicare supplement insurance do not pay for assisted living. For veterans there is help with assisted living. The VA will help with long-term care costs after passing a medical qualification test. One program for non-service related health issues will provide around $1,900 a month for married veterans, $1,600 for single veterans, and $1,000 per month for a surviving spouse. Long-term care insurance is probably the best option because it is designed specifically for paying most costs for assisted living. The earlier in life it is taken out and the healthier you are, the lower your premium will be. A single man in his 60s who first applies for long term care insurance may pay a $100 per-month premium. The younger you start, the lower the premium. Here are the living expenses that should be included in the monthly cost of assisted living: • Monthly mortgage or rent • 24-hour security service • Three meals/day plus snacks • Utilities • Housekeeping services • Daily health aid visitations • Transportation to off-site activities and appointments • Personal care • 24-hour emergency call system, as well as many small things. Assisted living, both the research and the financing, is something that should be thought about and planned for now, not later. The transition will be much smoother! MSN

What is in the future of food in nursing homes and assisted living facilities? By Tait Trussell, Senior Wire “Let food be your medicine,” said Hippocrates. In many nursing homes, what is served to eat is a far cry from medicine. But efforts are being made around the country to change the culture of nursing homes to meet the expectations of the baby boomer tide that will be demanding more of the nation’s nursing homes. A symposium last February in Baltimore brought together experts from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the American Health Care Association, and the National Center for Assisted Living. The conference was sponsored by the Pioneer Network, a group of professionals calling for nursing homes to become more humane and consumer-driven. Pioneer is a non-profit based in Rochester, N.Y. A background paper by Carmen Bowman of Edu-catering provided information on the culture change movement regarding food and dining. She wrote, “It has been said that living in the typical, traditional nursing home consists of three Rs - rules, routines, and requirements.... Most realize it represents loss of so much if not loss of everything: loss of home, loss of control, loss of choice, someone else’s schedule, eventually loss of self.” Not long ago, a long-time friend spent weeks of frustration in a nursing facility recovering from a life-threatening condition and extensive surgery. She wrote me recently, “Being a nutrition fanatic and having experienced two months of hospital and nursing home food with no discernible value, no wonder my healing slowed way down.... By the time I left, I think every cell left was crying out for help, and every bit of energy went into simple life maintenance, with nothing left over for the extraordinary burden healing a huge wound carries.” But the future of long-term care may be drastically changing. As Ms. Bowman wrote in her introduction to the program for the symposium, baby boomers “have acquired a broader taste for all kinds of food. This future long-term care customer... will re-formulate long term care by demanding fine dining, concierge services, and healthy fast foods from a food court with named franchises and open 24 hours a day.”

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She described tomorrowâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nursing home where you sleep until you naturally awaken. You get the drink of your choice. â&#x20AC;&#x153;When you are ready, someone asks you what youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re hungry for. Whether you eat breakfast early, late, or not at all, but are hungry for lunch a little earlier than most, open dining times make it possible to eat when you are ready.... You can order room service if you do not feel like getting up.... â&#x20AC;&#x153;Some of the food comes from the backyard, presenting the opportunity to eat fresh, healthy foods....â&#x20AC;? Opportunities such as these â&#x20AC;&#x153;are becoming a reality because of a growing movement called the cultural change movement. Leading the movement nationally was the Pioneer Network, which studied four pioneering models of care: Individualized Care at Providence Mount St. Vincent, Spokane, Washington; Bathing Without a Battle, the Cecil G. Shep Center, University of North Carolina; the Regenerative Community, Live Oak Institute, El Sobrante, California; and the Eden Alternative, Wimberley, Texas. The â&#x20AC;&#x153;culture change movementâ&#x20AC;? is 13 years old. It has had â&#x20AC;&#x153;slow progress but progress nonetheless,â&#x20AC;? said Bowman. Some 16,100 nursing homes are scattered throughout the nation. According to Pioneer Network, â&#x20AC;&#x153;There are 400 plus nursing homes in a sustained long term

culture change environment.â&#x20AC;? And according to the Pioneer Network website, more than 30 state culture change coalitions exist, with several in the process of organizing. According to the Eden Alternative website, 199 Eden homes are committed to the Eden principles where staff and residents are assisted to â&#x20AC;&#x153;grow and thrive.â&#x20AC;? According to Bowman, â&#x20AC;&#x153;A special edition of Action Pact magazine, Culture Change Now, reported almost 500 â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;householdsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; in 2008. Households are home living environments in nursing homes, with a kitchen, dining room, and usually private rooms, as well as a center where residents gather for large events. According to the Green House Project, â&#x20AC;&#x153;There are 50 Green House homes on 17 campuses in 12 states.â&#x20AC;? Green House homes are stand-alone houses where 1- to 12 older people live and are cared for by specially trained teams. But issues arise: must facility-developed menus be strictly followed? Must a facility serve a prescribed meal even if the person might not eat, risking weight loss? There is tension for nursing homes getting Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement, with their strict regulations. But these â&#x20AC;&#x153;awakeningsâ&#x20AC;? mentioned are being inspired by pioneering facilities around the country. MSN

Moving In With A Child: Should You Do It?

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By Lisa M. Petsche When older people are living alone, there may be concerns about their physical and emotional well-being. Particularly in situations where they are having health problems or do not live close by, a son or daughter may invite them to move in. If you find yourself on the receiving end of such an offer, ask yourself the following questions and take time to honestly and thoroughly answer each one before making a decision. Interpersonal Issues What kind of relationship do you and your son or daughter have? How well do you get along with others in the household? Any personality clashes are sure to be magnified when you are living under the same roof. If you need assistance, are you comfortable with the idea of

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role reversal? Your Needs and Expectations Would the move uproot you from important relationships and community connections such as supportive longtime neighbors, a church congregation, or clubs? If you have a pet, can it be accommodated? If your child has pets, are you comfortable around them? If you have a chronic illness, how are your needs likely to change? Would you expect your family to provide whatever help you may require? If so, are they willing and able? Your Familyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Needs and Expectations Would you be expected to contribute to the household in practical ways, such as cooking meals or providing childcare? If you require assistance: Would your child or other household members be able to cope with the ongoing physical, mental, and emotional demands of care giving? Would they have enough time to devote to the rest of their family â&#x20AC;&#x201C; spouse, children, grandchildren, other older relatives? Would they still have time for themselves â&#x20AC;&#x201C; for exercise, hobbies, volunteer work, or whatever else is important to them? Lifestyle Issues Do you and your son or daughter have similar lifestyles and values? If not, are differences likely to be an ongoing source of tension? If you require care, how might your needs affect your childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s work life, social life, vacation plans, and other pursuits? Is he or she prepared to make adjustments? MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 57

Mother, daughter keep their minds nimble with Scrabbleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s mental gymnastics By Dianna Troyer ing at a higher level.â&#x20AC;? Quipu. Qi. Za. Sylvia and Ruth are among 3,008 members These quirky words, uncommon in everyday of the North American Scrabble Players Associalanguage, are familiar vocabulary to longtime tion. Since the game was invented in 1938, more Scrabble players like Bozeman residents Sylvia than 150 million boards have been sold worldwide, Sparkman, 62, and her mother Ruth Sawyer, 88. and one in three American households owns a Sylvia is such a dedicated player that she or- board. The popular American word game is played ganized national Scrabble worldwide in more than tournaments in Bozeman 100 countries and in 29 in 2002, 2004, and 2005 languages. and is considering orgaArchitect Alfred nizing another in 2011. Mosher Butts invented Ruth, who moved to Bozthe game, but was uneman this year, is equalable to mass market ly passionate about the it and sold the rights game. She was inducted to it in 1948 to James into the Texas Scrabble Brunot. He changed Hall of Fame in 2008, the name to Scrabble, recognizing her 30 years which means to scratch of volunteering to keep her frantically. Officially, it local club active. is known as ScrabTo celebrate Ruthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bleÂŽ Brand Crossword 88th birthday, the two Game, a trademark Sylvia Sparkman left, and her mother, Ruth predictably played Scrabof Hasbro, Inc. The Sawyer, play Scrabble to celebrate Ruthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ble, competing to see gameâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s big break came 88th birthday in Bozeman recently. Scrabble is who could score the most in 1952 when Macyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s popular because itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a game of skill, luck, and points by spelling words president Jack Strauss strategy, Sylvia says. [Photo by Dianna Troyer] using individual tiles printplayed Scrabble during ed with a letter and point value. They spelled un- a vacation, then placed a large order for it, triggercommon words, linking letters in crossword style. ing its mass popularity. Points for each letter are based on the frequency of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Scrabble is popular because itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s so stimulating, the letters in everyday writing, so letters used less and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a game of strategy, skill, and luck,â&#x20AC;? says frequently such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;qâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;zâ&#x20AC;? have a high number Sylvia, who has been playing the game since she of points, 10, while common vowels such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;aâ&#x20AC;? was 10 or 11 and received it as a Christmas gift. and â&#x20AC;&#x153;iâ&#x20AC;? are worth one point each. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Every game is completely unique.â&#x20AC;? And what exactly do quipu, qi and za mean? Pondering her next move, Ruth says, â&#x20AC;&#x153;You think â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re usually more interested in the scores of you have the perfect words with the letters â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;qâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; or â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;z,â&#x20AC;&#x2122; than in their mean- seven-letter word. Then ing,â&#x20AC;? says Sylvia, with a laugh. Still, Sylvia, a con- the board can change in tract administrator at the Information Technology an instant with another Center at Montana State University, can quickly playerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s word, and you define them. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Quipu is a device ancient Peruvians might have all the right used for calculating and record keeping. Qi is the Our goal goa at Caslen Living Centers is to help vital life force, and za is a seniors their quality of life. We respect nior ors o s maintain m in mai short word for pizza.â&#x20AC;? their he right ght to g t privacy, p acy c dignity and personal choice. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Scrabble is a great game for helping the brain stay healthy,â&#x20AC;? Sylvia says, as she ponders her next move on the board. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Studies have shown that it is important to maintain brain activity as we age. The more kinds of mental stimulation we can be involved in, the better. Â&#x2021;0HGLFDWLRQ$VVLVWDQFH Playing certain games, Â&#x2021;+RPHPDGH0HDOV'DLO\ like Scrabble, can help Â&#x2021;+RXVHNHHSLQJ/DXQGU\6HUYLFHV s t a v e o ff d e m e n t i a , Â&#x2021;(PHUJHQF\&DOO6\VWHPWR6WDII whether you play casuFor a tour of our homes please call ally at the kitchen table or   cutthroat in competitions. 0HDGRZODUN0DQRU Caslen Playing games helps Whitehall /LYLQJVWRQ keep the brain function-

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Hearing solutions you can trust.

letters but not enough space.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;A lot of new words have come into use in the past few years,â&#x20AC;? Ruth says. Sylvia adds, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The new words like qi and za have added to the richness of the game. They arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t difficult or long yet have a high score.â&#x20AC;? Ruth plays exon, meaning a segment of a gene, which gives her 11 points. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll put any word down on the board that will make us some points,â&#x20AC;? says Ruth, who began competing in national tournaments after she retired as a real estate agent in 1989. Sylvia counters with yob, British slang for a young hoodlum, worth eight points. For Sylvia, Scrabble is not only mentally stimulating; it has been a great way to meet people. In 1989, she, her husband Mike, and their daughter moved to Bozeman from Washington, D.C. because â&#x20AC;&#x153;we got tired of the murders.â&#x20AC;? Once there, Sylvia began searching for Scrabble players. In 1997, she started a local club that still meets at 1:30 p.m. on the third Saturday of the month at the Leaf and Bean coffee shop. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have about a half dozen people who come regularly,â&#x20AC;? Sylvia says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;When some Scrabble players travel, they look on the North American Scrabble Players Association website to find other players at their destination. We have some players in Billings who will give me a call when they come through, and Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll contact our local players to see if they are up for a game. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m happy to hear from folks who would be interested in playing with us; I can be reached at 406-539-4131.â&#x20AC;? When Sylvia organized her last national tournament, about 30 players of all ages and walks of life came to Bozeman. â&#x20AC;&#x153;That was a good turnout, considering Bozeman isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t a metropolitan area,â&#x20AC;? Sylvia says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Tournament players tend to be people in their 40s or older who have the freedom to travel. Some tournament players are in their high 80s and low 90s and travel the country competing.â&#x20AC;? Tournament games are timed and limited to 25 minutes for each player. Players are grouped together based on their skill levels, ranging from beginning to advanced, explains Sylvia, who describes herself as a high medium player. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Some players who take the game seriously will study several hours every week, looking up high-scoring words in a Scrabble dictionary,â&#x20AC;? says Sylvia, who enjoys the game but doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t like to study. While tournaments are timed, Sylvia and Ruth usually donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t limit their games, instead playing until they canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t spell any more words. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Our longest game went on for an hour-and-a-half,â&#x20AC;? Sylvia says, as she spells â&#x20AC;&#x153;howe,â&#x20AC;? a Scottish word meaning valley, worth 10 points. MSN

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Preserve. Enhance. Live. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re experiencing hearing difficulties, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s crucial that you get a complete assessment as soon as possible. Since hearing troubles may stem from a variety of causes, including some medical conditions, it just makes sense to have your hearing evaluated where you have direct access to an audiologist and ear, nose and throat physicians. At Big Sky ENT Hearing Services, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll receive comprehensive analysis and care, whether you need to be fitted for a hearing instrument or require access to medical treatment.

No referral necessary. Make your appointment today. Hugh Hetherington, M.D. Trang Rogers, AuD., Board Certified Audiologist

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Discover the history of Park County, Montana through a variety of exhibits in our three-story 1906 schoolhouse listed on the National Register of Historic Places. See displays illustrating the early peoples of the area including native cultures, the Northern Pacific Railroadâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s role in westward expansion, and Livingston as the original railroad gateway to Yellowstone National Park. The museum portrays local settlers, businesses, and mining. An original blacksmith shop and a one-room schoolhouse are also located on the historic grounds. Additional transportation displays may be viewed in our back garage including a rare Casey Jones 551 Motorized Track Car. The Yellowstone Gateway Museum is located at 118 West Chinook Street, Livingston, Montana and is open 10-5 daily, mid-May through September. Admission is $6 adults, $5 seniors, $2 children 6-12. Memberships are available through the Friends of the Yellowstone Gateway Museum. By visiting www.Yellowstone.Pastperfect-Online.com, you can view the Doris & Bill Whithorn Photo Collection, which contains over 7,000 historic photos of Park County. For further information, call 406-222-4184, email us at museum@imt. net, or visit us at www.livingstonmuseums.org. MSN

Touch History At The Museum Of The Rockies Dinosaurs, Montana History, Native American heritage, and a brandnew Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Discovery Center geared at teaching kids about the science of Yellowstone Parkâ&#x20AC;Ś what more can we say? Come and check out the Museum of the Rockies where history comes alive, and there is always something new to see! The Museum of the Rockies at Montana State University offers a oneof-a-kind adventure. It is home to one of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest dinosaur fossil collections and dinosaur hall. While here, you can experience pioneer life, the journey of Lewis and Clark, Montanaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Native American heritage and spectacular star gazing at the Taylor Planetarium. There are ever changing exhibits on art, history, geology, and dinosaurs, plus an extraordinary Museum Store. Our summer exhibit, Leonardo da Vinci: Machines in Motion will be here through September 11, 2010, and the Planetarium has shows daily. Come and be inspired by our fascinating collection of dinosaur bones and fossils, or take a stroll down to the Tinsley House on the Museum grounds. This house is an authentic Montana homestead that is a fully operational Living History Farm. The Museum of the Rockies is conveniently located on the southwest corner of Willson and Kagy, just south of the Montana State University Campus. For more information, call 406-994-2251 or visit www.museumoftherockies.org. MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Montana’s Dog Sled Education and Therapy Team Aricle and Photo By Kim Thielman-Ibes One retirement just was not enough for Pixie and Sorrel, two retired sled dogs from one of the last great frontiers, Alaska’s Denali National Park. Pixie and Sorrel come from a long history of Alaskan Huskies, bred over hundreds of years to run and pull sleds and embrace the negative degree double-digit freezing temperatures typical at the top of the world. After spending a little more than eight years patrolling Denali’s designated two-million-acre wilderness area as sled dogs have done since the sleddog patrol was established in 1917, these two hero dogs found a second career with Harry and Lela Schlitz of Park City, Montana. In 2004, Pixie and Sorrel joined the Schlitzes and their Malamute husky named Sue on a journey to bring excitement, joy, and ultimately make literature come alive to children across the country. “Our work is with schools and libraries,” says Harry Schlitz, “The sled dogs are just wonderful, they don’t know the meaning of quit, and they’re so good with the children.” The Schlitzes run Mountain Mushers Dog Sled Education and Therapy Team from their twenty acres in Park City, Montana, sitting high atop the rimrocks outside Billings. For more than eighteen years, Harry Schlitz and his team of sled dogs have been delighting children and adults alike from California to Massachusetts. Pixie and Sorrel are part of the second team of sled dogs that have been adopted by the Schlitzes in their endeavor to help children find their own path to success through reading. It is with much passion and natural enthusiasm that Harry and Lela regale their audiences with the history, culture, and heroic feats accomplished by Alaskan sled dogs. For each of their programs the Schlitzes bring in an actual sled, harnesses (one used in the 1920s, and one in use today), and their heroes, Pixie, Sorrel, and Sue. Not to be upstaged by the singing Sue or lovable Denali duo, the three make their appearance in the third act of the program. “The therapy part of our business began with one of our first sled-dogs named Star,” says Lela Schlitz adding that Sue has taken over these reins with the passing of Star. Like much of their business, helping autistic, handicapped, and special education children began somewhat serendipitously. “We were working with a visually handicapped class and Star lay down on the carpet. She let the kids touch her everywhere and we talked about what they were touching, her ears, her nose and we were all in tears by the end,” says Harry. “After every program we’ve ever done, there’s been an episode that touched our hearts like this one. The rewards have been amazing,” says Lela, “I don’t have all the words to say, but we wouldn’t take a million dollars for all the good experiences we’ve had.”

“...Montana’s most entertaining museum...” —Lonely Planet 406.994.2251 museumoftherockies.org

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 59


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The Schlitzes were in their early fifties when they started their business in 1992. Harry had been laid off from a long career with the airlines and Lela was a kindergarten teacher in the inner cities of southern California. The couple lived in

Lake Arrowhead near the Snow Valley ski area and Harry, who loved dogs and was looking for a second career had decided to run a sled-dog team. The area’s weather proved to be too inconsistent with snowfall and their business looked grim until they gave a ride to a teacher who asked Harry if he would bring his dogs and his sleds into her classroom. Harry did, tying their visit to literature and the rest as they say, is history. Since that first classroom experience, they have added buddy reading programs where children experiencing problems with reading find comfort and encouragement by reading to their sled dogs. In addition, they have developed programs using their

family of sled dogs to help children learn how to approach unknown dogs outside the classroom. This year Harry turned seventy and Lela sixty-eight and after traveling to more than 1,000 schools and libraries, they are looking at taking their second retirement along with Pixie, Sorrel, and Sue. “Now we’re going to relax and enjoy our summer at home,” says Lela, “We’ll be volunteering now more than running Montana Mushers as a business - though Harry says he always appreciates coffee and gas money.” To find out more about Montana Mushers Dog Sled and Therapy Team visit www.mtmushers.com. MSN

Virginia City Players at the Opera House By Connie Daugherty Montana’s oldest summer stock theater company started its 61st season with an original drama that received immediate accolades. A trip to Virginia City to see the Virginia City Players is an annual excursion for my family. This year we went down over Father’s Day weekend for the first play of the season. It was one of the best so far. Fire from Within: The 1917 Butte Mining Disaster was written and directed by Gerald B. Roe, a professor at Rocky Mountain College in Billings. Based on actual letters written by trapped miners, the LABOR DAY WEEKEND action is narrated by the ENNIS, MONTANA mother of one of those line p o t miners. Trapped unth fle wi d trips MIDL f a R derground when a fire IFE ket uide CHRY a Buc kle, g SLER broke out in the Granite · Meg , reels, tac T S RAF C rods A Mountain mineshaft, 29 K A T MAIN CLARIFT BOA S T R men follow the lead of EET D BBQ one courageous and WIN THIS BOAT!! es riti determined young man. leb SPONSORED BY THE · Angling Ce n tio eti mp MADISON RIVER co & As the underground · Casting clinics FOUNDATION truction tunnels fill with poison· Fly Tying demos & ins m ous gases and smoke, · Exhibits · Kids Progra he leads a few willing For a complete Festival schedule and more info, followers to a place of visit www.madisonriverfoundation.org or call 406.682.3148

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clean oxygen. They barricade themselves inside and settle down to wait. But for what? They have no water, no food, and no way to communication with the top. Immediate death if they venture outside the bulkhead, slow death if they stay trapped inside. At least they have time to write letters to their loved ones. The play is well researched, professionally delivered, and an indication of a fantastic season. The Virginia Players perform nightly (except Monday) through Labor Day. Three different 19th century style melodramas are presented each season. Fire From Within was the first offering. The others are The Miser: Madness of a Moneylender, a comedy, and the Desperation of Kathleen: Irish Love and Laughter, a musical. The Miser is the story of a rich miser who hoards every cent he can. He even forces his children into arranged marriages in order to acquire more riches for himself. Then he becomes infatuated with the woman his son loves, and the drama ensues. Ends August 1. In Desperation of Kathleen a young Irish girl, Kathleen steals aboard a ship bound for New York City to escape an arranged marriage. Her friend, Mary, goes along and once in New York they find work as chorus girls in a Broadway musical. They attract the attention of Stage-DoorJohnnys and Irish bounders. Then Kathleen’s mother arrives. The story is told with Irish humor and familiar melodies. Runs through Labor Day. Each performance is followed by Vaudeville style, Varied Vigorous Vagary of Vivacious Variety Acts featuring the entire cast. Music and stand-up comedy along with audience participation are the perfect finish to a fun evening. The Virginia City Players have received glowing reviews by the Village Voice, Sunset, and other respected publications. The players describe themselves as the “family show end of the street.” If you are interested in something a bit more 21st century, the Brewery Follies provides a contemporary stand-up comedy show each night. Maybe a bit risqué for great-grandma or for the pre-teen crowd, but fun and funny for most adults. For additional information visit www.Virginiacityplayers.com. MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 61

Calling ALL Homeowners in Park and Gallatin Counties! Habitat for Humanity of Gallatin County is just about to begin a three year program in cooperation with Habitat for Humanity International to provide simple home repairs, weatherization, and some refurbishing projects for homeowners in Park and Gallatin Counties. This special Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, a nationwide program, selected Habitat for Humanity of Gallatin Valley as one of only 163 Habitat affiliates to implement this special initiative. The goal is to improve communities by helping homeowners with minor repairs, weatherization, simple refurbishing, and to coordinate these activities with other community programs and state agencies. By having decent housing, homeowners

can reduce their energy bills and stay in their communities rather than look for housing elsewhere. As homeowners stay in their current homes, their communities remain strong, vital, and healthy for all residents. If you would like to participate in this program or know someone who could benefit from minor repair, weatherization, or simple refurbishing contact J. David Magistrelli at 406-388-8225, the main Habitat for Humanity of Gallatin Valley phone number, or email David at jdavid@habitatbozeman.org. MSN

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Article and Photo By Dianna Troyer New isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t necessarily better, especially when making a shotgun, says Robert Harris, a Conner resident who owns and shoots about 15 vintage shotguns made between 1875 and 1946. Certain manufacturing techniques practiced by gun makers more than a century ago, when guns were handmade, still baffle modern gun makers who cannot duplicate the old-time technology. For example, consider g gun barrels made of Dam mascus steel, a blend of iiron and steel, Rob says. T The steel was named for D Damascus, Syria, where iit was made into swords d during the Crusades. Britiish military leaders brought tthe metal-making techn niques back to England. T The two metals are braide ed together when hot, then ttwisted to form gun barrels with swirling patterns. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Somehow, some gun makers were able to write the name of their company in the tiniest scroll using Damascus steel,â&#x20AC;? Rob says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;No one can duplicate that today, and modern gun makers scratch their heads and wonder how this lost technique was done. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s still a mystery. Today, the technique for making Damascus steel barrels is cost-prohibitive, so gun manufacturers wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t even bother with it. Other trade secrets have been lost, too, due to mass production of guns in modern times.â&#x20AC;? Robâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s appreciation for vintage handcrafted shotguns prompted him to start the Nimrod Classic in 2004, a sporting clays shooting competition showcasing shotguns made before 1951. With their vintage guns, entrants shoot round, orange clay targets thrown in various patterns to mimic game birds in flight. For the shoot, Rob jokingly defined Nimrod as a person or expert devoted to hunting, or a person regarded as silly. (Continued on page 63)

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AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MON TANA

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Vintage Shotgun Intrigue - continued from page 61 “The Nimrod Classic is a chance for owners of vintage shotguns to share some camaraderie and good stories, to display their guns and talk about their amazing history, and to honor these old gun makers,” says Rob, 61, who has been able to devote more time to vintage guns, sporting clays, and bird hunting in the past few years since retiring as a wildlife biologist in 2007. “The first year of the Nimrod Classic in Polson, we attracted 75 competitors from nine states. Some folks came from as far as Texas and Wisconsin. In later years, we had as many as 110.” In June, about 75 competitors shot at the Nimrod Classic at Gallatin Sporting Clays west of Bozeman. Because Rob wanted to encourage some ‘younger blood’ in the sport, he passed the organizational mantle to Bozeman gun dealer Charlie Pfleger to carry on the tradition. At the classic, Rob shot his Westley-Richards shotgun (built in 1890 in Birmingham, England), as well as a James Purdey hammer gun (built in 1875 in London). Both have Damascus steel barrels. His British shotguns aren’t merely for show or sporting clays competition, but are used in the field as well. “They’re incredibly functional and durable,” says Rob, an avid bird hunter, who travels Montana every autumn with his vintage shotguns and his black Lab, Traveller. Together they hunt pigeons, doves, grouse, pheasants, and waterfowl for his dinner table. “During the past 20 years, I’ve put well over 70,000 nitro rounds through my Westley-Richards with only $300 toward repairs, which I consider a bargain.” The vintage guns are fascinating, not only for the unsolved mysteries of their construction techniques, but also for their personal history. “James Purdey & Sons opened in 1814 and is still in business, so if you send in a serial number to them, they can tell you who the original owner was.” After Rob purchased his Purdey from an American dealer, he wrote to the company asking about the original owner. “The gun is the second of a pair made for one William Proby, a.k.a. Lord Carysfort. The gun bears his inlaid ducal crest that signifies the family motto - ‘This hand is an enemy to tyrants.’ Well placed in British society, William Proby owned an estate where he hosted shooting parties for fellow government dignitaries and friends.” Rob, who says he was introduced to guns and shooting at age 12 by his maternal grandfather, became intrigued with vintage shotguns in the late 1980s, when American gun dealers began selling more and more British shotguns. He sees some irony in how the exquisite guns of British aristocrats have ended up in the hands of blue-collar Americans like himself. “I ain’t no Rockefeller,” he says, “and if you doubt that, you should see my house. “In the late 1980s, Britain’s egregiously restrictive gun laws made it such

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a hassle to even own a long gun that a lot of these fine old British pieces were sold at auction and purchased by American gun dealers. Some need a little work, but once restored they’re often worth far more than their original purchase price.” Old-time British gun makers are fascinating to Rob. “A lot of these men had 70 years in their trade. Some were indentured as servants when they were only seven years old. They lived with the gun maker’s family and received food, clothing, and shelter in exchange for their work… all the while, learning a trade. Women were involved in gun making, too. Because they were so patient and fastidious, they often did the checkering of intricate pat-

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AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

terns on the wooden stocks. Some of these guys were still working at their gun bench every day well into their 80s, because they knew nothing else.” At home, Rob works frequently (although not every day) at his gun bench, restoring old guns and gun cases. He has known other things in life besides guns, too. A Utah native, he graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in both fisheries and wildlife management. Following that, he entered the Officer Candidate’s School of the U.S. Coast Guard and was stationed for four years in Ketchikan, Alaska, performing search and rescue work. In 1975, he returned to Utah to take a job with Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources. He didn’t cotton to how natural resources were treated there, which

prompted him and his wife, Missy, to relocate to Montana in 1977. “In Utah, I considered the natural resources to generally be ‘used hard and put up wet.’ My portion of the state was heavily mined for coal, extensively drilled for natural gas, and over-roaded as a result. At least in Montana in the 1970s, there was a modicum of respect for wild lands and clean water.” He accepted a position with the U.S. Forest Service in Montana in 1978, where he worked 15 years in both fisheries and elk habitat management. In the latter half of his career, he worked as a private-contracting biologist for various state and federal agencies in the field of wetland/waterfowl management and creation. While his work assignments changed, his keen interest in shooting and vintage shotguns has never flagged. “If properly shot and cared for, these old guns can last a very, very long time,” he says, “which is all the more reason to protect our Second Amendment and other shooting rights. Otherwise, we are no better off than England… which, I suppose, makes my hand ‘an enemy to tyrants’ as well.” MSN

Bryce Canyon’s formations - continued from page 52 ing them into stone. While Native Americans wandered for centuries through the canyon, it was not until the late 1800s that Mormon pioneers arrived. In 1875, the canyon’s namesake, Ebenezer Bryce, moved to the Paria Valley, built a home near the canyon, raised cattle, dug irrigation ditches, began building roads, and harvested timber. Although he only lived in the area five years before moving on to Arizona, he left behind his famous summary of the canyon - “a helluva place to lose a cow.” In 1928, the canyon was established as a national park, protecting more than 400 plant species and 160 bird species. Because the park is at an elevation of 6,000 to 9,000 feet, it offers ideal summer hiking weather, neither too hot nor too cold. Normal daily summer temperatures range from 38 to 83, with extreme highs in the mid-90s. As we reached the bottom of the canyon, the light seemed to glow - rosy and golden like artists’ paintings of what they imagine heaven might look like. Down here our imaginations took over, and it was natural to make up names for the rock shapes. After our hike, we drove down the 18-mile main road through the park and pulled over at scenic turnouts, where paradise was punctuated with reality checks. Signs warned, “Dangerous cliffs, watch your children. Stay in your car during lightning storms.” At the end of the road, we pulled over at the one-mile Bristlecone Loop Trail and hiked to a 1,600-year-old bristlecone pine growing on a promontory that, along with us, was being scoured by a horizontal wind. After a few more days of hiking, we agreed with Lyle: “Bryce is a great place to be. We still haven’t seen it all.” MSN


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 65

Jeffersonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Tiny Trees Flourish have lived to enjoy the shade of my own sapling. It is kind of scary â&#x20AC;&#x201C; like holding Joseph, my first grandchild, in my arms 24 years ago and looking way up into his eyes today and hoping he does not accidentally sit on me. Oh, it pleases a gardener to realize that his descendants way down the line in some new century will be shaded by the giant tree he started. And it tickles a person who planted a little two-leaf stick of a tree eventually to spot a birdâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nest in that tree. It makes you feel like Jimmy Carter, building places for wee homeless birds to dwell in â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Habitat for Feathered Friends. But Jefferson was right. An old person who plants a tree also does so selfishly for the pure, raw, hedonistic pride of starting something wonderful. Planting a tree is a slightly feeble but constructive way of playing god. Jefferson and I may wish you well in the shade of our trees when we are long gone. But make no mistake; what we do in the here and now is a power trip, whether that is Jefferson helping to create a massive forest of liberty or a cool, green forest for future birds and citizens. Jefferson was the champ, but I plant my share of trees. And that is no mean feat in what used to be a dry desert before irrigation. Over the decades, tens of thousands of us have planted trees â&#x20AC;&#x201C; trees that were insignificant at first. But now as the seasons change, they tower over us, leafing out before our eyes, and giving their annual gift of shade and flowers. We who live and garden here today are as much a part of that as Jefferson was a part of creating a new species of government with liberty and mutual respect among people high and low. How he must have relished that as the new nation germinated and flourished, developing a style of citizen rule that is now planted for general betterment throughout much of the world. He must have gone to his grave savoring his generous planting of life, liberty, and the pursuit,

not just of happiness but also of his own pure unvarnished pleasure during his gentle senior years. Hall may be contacted at wilberth@cableone.net or at 1012 Prospect Ave., Lewiston, ID 83501. MSN

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By Bill Hall At first glance, older people who plant trees are the soul of generosity. People at an age when they might be well advised to buy only ripe bananas, not only buy green bananas but green trees as well, trees that will shade generations yet unborn. Kindness is part of the motivation for planting a tree in old age. It is gratifying to reflect on the fact that people who do not yet exist will eventually enjoy the shade you provide. But do not think tree planting in later years is not also a selfish act. Old Thomas Jefferson said planting was one of his â&#x20AC;&#x153;great amusements,â&#x20AC;? even when it involved â&#x20AC;&#x153;things which can only be for posterity.â&#x20AC;? He said a person in his seventies â&#x20AC;&#x153;has no right to count on anything but annuals.â&#x20AC;? (Annuals, for novices, are plants that croak over winter in the first year of their existence. Fortunately, most of us do not. We are perennials.) You plant something as long-lived as a tree partly because you optimistically and somewhat selfishly believe you will live another decade or two and get to enjoy the results of your old, gray-green thumb. But older people hedge their bets, as my wife and I did the other day. We were buying an ornamental tree. When the clerk asked if we wanted the large tree or the small economy model, we simultaneously answered, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Large!â&#x20AC;? People our age plant large trees because we might not have time to see it develop into much. Instant gratification is the code of the aged. It is now or never. When you are younger, it is different. Twentysix years ago, I lifted a 7-foot northern red oak out of its nursery pot and dropped it into the hole I had dug near the house we had just moved into. It was kind of pathetic at first â&#x20AC;&#x201C; especially for an oak. Oak trees are supposed to be tall and strong. The tree I planted was a scrawny little stick, looking sort of silly with our house towering above it. Today, 26 years later, that tree is four stories high. The trunk is a foot and a half through. I

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PAGE 66 MONTANA SENIOR NEWS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Memories in Miniature Article and Photo By Connie Daugherty Butte’s Bill Maunder is a big man with big hands, a big smile, and a hearty laugh, but the work he does is amazingly tiny, intricate, and accurate. “I’ve always been interested in anything with wheels,” he says. He is also an old-time cowboy and rock ‘n roll music fan. Combine that with a penchant for collecting, a clever mind, and artistic talent, and you have the perfect combination for creating memories. Most of Bill’s memorable creations are in miniature. “It takes up less room that way,” he says with a chuckle. But that room is crammed full! Tiny cars, tiny pictures, tiny people fill department store size display cases. Other rooms in his cozy, inviting Butte home also contain filled-to-bursting custom-built display cases of his work. Bill was born in Butte’s Finn town neighborhood and grew up speaking Finnish because his grandmother didn’t like to speak much English. An artist since high school and a fan of some of the stars of his day - James Dean, Roy Rogers, and Rex Allen - Bill has always enjoyed drawing. He did pen and ink sketches of Roy Rogers and Rex Allen for several years. “I always liked cowboy stuff,” says this tall man dressed in western slacks, shirt, boots, and belt buckle. He remembers seeing an ad for artists in a fan club magazine. He sent in a sample of his sketches,

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and the rest, as they say, is history. Bill’s artwork graced the covers of several Roy Rogers Fan Club newsletter issues, including a special 60th anniversary issue. He also created a painting of Roy that hung in the star’s museum in Branson, Missouri until it closed. “I did some work for Rex Allen too,” he says. He recalls meeting the country western star in Great Falls in 1964. His oldest son, Dean Allen, was named for James Dean and Rex Allen, but his biggest collection is of Roy Rogers memorabilia. He recalls visiting with the cowboy star in 1983 in Victorville, California and stayed in touch with the family over the years. Much as Bill liked anything cowboy, he liked anything with wheels even more - from stagecoaches to racecars. He started collecting and building model cars “so long ago, I can’t even remember,��� he says. He has over 1,000 plastic and metal dye cast models of all shapes and sizes - some completed and some still in the original boxes. But the artist and creator in Bill could never just collect or just follow a pattern. Almost everything he collected has been customized with his own touches somehow. Working only with an Exact-o knife, a small paintbrush, and tweezers, he cuts out, paints, and adds tiny details. He put a minuscule cigarette in the mouth of a 6-inch James Dean toy - an accurate and appropriate addition. “But it isn’t quite politically correct,” he jokes. He has a pen-top Al Capone car that he customized with working lights, bullet holes, a whisky bottle, and a tiny Al Capone standing on the running board, cigar in his mouth and a gun on his hip. “One has to have a steady hand and good eyes,” he says. Talent, patience, and attention to detail are also helpful.


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Bill is especially proud of his Roy Rogers cowboy car, a 1962 Pontiac convertible that he customized with leather seats and sun visors, horse hood ornament, pistol door handles, a guitar and a saddle in the backseat, and a cowboy hat on the back. One of his earliest projects, a customized model of a specially designed Model T was featured on the cover of Rod and Custom magazine and several of his cars have been displayed in the International Model Car Museum in Sandy, Utah. When Bill was not collecting and customizing tiny cars, he was driving big ones. He drove a taxi, ambulance, and an oil truck, “I delivered everything but babies,” he jokes. He drove a Butte city bus for over two decades and became a familiar and friendly face for many people throughout the town. “I had the Walkerville route,” he says recalling the nervewracking challenge of maneuvering that big bus up and down the steep ice-covered hills. He also drove Butte’s Senior Citizen bus for several years. Although Bill retired in 2000, he could not quite leave the bus behind. He customized a pen-top size bus to replicate the ones he drove for so many years. “That’s me - I shrank myself down,” he says pointing to the quarter-inch, paper image standing in the doorway of the 4-inch bus. When some of the older buses were replaced and slated to be crushed into scrap metal, Bill rescued what he could, “I saved almost everything but the bus,” he says. He has a dashboard, a steering wheel, a fare box, a gearshift, and even a destination sign. “It’s fun for the grandkids,” he says. Bill and his wife, Carol, babysit the youngest two of their seven grandchildren most weekday afternoons. Several mornings a week Bill works out at the local YMCA and in the evenings while Carol is quilting he works on his miniatures.

“We’re just all pens and needles,” he jokes. At seventy-six Bill has developed arthritis in his neck and shoulder, and he moves a bit slower than he used to, but his eyesight is still good (no need for glasses). He gave up painting full-sized pictures 7 or 8 years ago “because my hand wasn’t steady enough for the big stuff,” he explains. But it does not bother him to work in miniature. “I can focus on the smaller things,” he says. So, using ballpoint pens, colored pencils, and oil pastels, he continues to paint intricately detailed postage stamp size pictures for family and friends. “Every holiday I try to do something different,” he says. His display case is full of tiny framed pictures, cards, and miniature creations that he made for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter, and of course wedding anniversaries. This year, for their 52nd anniversary, Bill made his wife a tiny mailbox on a post with a microscopic sketch of a stagecoach inside. Then they got in their “torch red” 1965 Ford Galaxy and drove to Deer Lodge for lunch. “That car is really Carol’s,” Bill says. Besides the Galaxy, Bill and Carol also own and drive a 1978 Ford LTD and a 1987 Chrysler 5th Avenue. “People just don’t keep cars very long anymore,” he laments. One of Bill’s recent miniature projects is a replica of Butte’s Park movie theater. He started with a kit for the building; then he got creative. He customized the marquee to feature a double bill with Roy Rogers and Gene Autry and added a flashing light behind the sign. He added people and bicycles in the front and a cat and dog in back alley. And the whole scene fits comfortably in the palm of his big hand. “I’ve gathered a lot of toys,” Bill says indicating his collections. And he will keep on gathering, customizing, and creating memories as long as his hands and his eyes allow. “My right eye is for driving and my left eye is for working on close up,” he jokes. With one eye on the past and one on the present, life is good for Bill Maunder. MSN

MONTANA SENIOR NEWS PAGE 67


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Binding all things Irish: Monica Cavanaugh By Kim Thielman-Ibes Among those people quietly distinguishing themselves in Butte, asking for no accolades, and shying from the public eye while they work tirelessly to tighten the fabric of their community is Monica Cavanaugh. Though she was born in Butte, the seeds for Monica Cavanaugh’s Irish future were sown oddly enough in Bozeman. The year was 1976, Monica was the head cosmetician for Skaggs in Bozeman, and she and the assistant manager (from Butte) agreed to green up the store for Saint Patrick’s Day. “We brought the green to Bozeman that spring and it just took off from there,” says Cavanaugh. After a two-year stint in Bozeman, she went to work at Skaggs in Butte for 21-years. In 2001, when Cavanaugh turned 49, she resigned from Skaggs and opened Cavanaugh’s County Celtic on a shoestring and a prayer. It was only natural that Cavanaugh’s shop would be Irish one hundred and ten percent, if not more. “My husband about fell over,” she says, “No bank was going to give me a loan so I cashed in all my retirement for this store project when a friend offered her a small rental for three months if we

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would renovate it. It just seemed that everything I did and everywhere I worked was just practice for this. For a while, I wasn’t sure, it’s been a long journey. But looking back now it looks like our investment hasn’t been a bad one.” Marcus Daley, the Copper King, migrated from County Cavan and built his empire and Butte around the spirit and character of his Irish, Catholic, and Gaelic heritage. The Irish followed him by the thousands from 1870 through 1915, many migrating from mining ttown to mining town b but most immigrating ffrom the parish of Eye eries in County Cork. B By the early 1900s, o one quarter of Butte’s p population was Irish. T Today, Butte still has tthe largest percentage o of Irish of any city in tthe nation and the Irish ccontinue to come from IIreland mainly to trace ttheir family roots but a also to pick up a little B Butte Irish pride themsselves. “So many people from Ireland have family who lived or died in Butte and the Butte Archives is one of the richest sources of information in the country,” says Cavanaugh. But it’s not just the archives where people gravitate for information. “Monica is like the nexus of the Irish community in Butte. Her store is a gathering place where people come and talk about their Irish roots and she is almost single-handedly one of the biggest promoters of Irish culture and purveyors of information we have,” says George Everett, Executive Director of Mainstreet Uptown Butte. “Oh goodness,” Cavanaugh says with a laugh. “There is a huge number of active Irish in this community and given an opportunity every one of them will promote this community and the Irish in any way they can. But I’m here; I’m in a concrete location, with a phone, an email, and a web address six days a week so I’m accessible to those looking for what direction to go.” Cavanaugh receives calls from all over the world asking about all things, Irish or not, from when does the Peking Parlour open, to where do I get tickets for the Irish festival or can you send me a special order Butte Irish item.


AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010

Cavanaugh’s County Celtic store in historic uptown Butte celebrates Butte’s heritage and history. She hopes that her store will help keep this special legacy alive for many more generations to come. “Her shop is Irish Central,” says Lorretta Lynde, President of the Montana Gaelic Cultural Society, “She’s provided office space for the Gaelic Society and works on the Irish festival committees. She’s also a very enthusiastic and dedicated member of the Butte Uptown Association and her shop is the most astonishing thing you’ve ever seen. I don’t know any way to tell you what it’s like, you just have to go.” Lynde has been to Ireland eleven times and has yet to see anything comparable. Cavanaugh makes no claims herself but would tell you that she has a good selection and it makes many people happy. “There are probably more people in Butte today that have Irish in their blood, though it might not be as concentrated. In a sense, you don’t notice because it doesn’t matter if you’re Irish, Finnish,

Cornish, or even Italian; you don’t need to be Irish to have Butte pride. We’re four or five generations away from our direct descendants and we try to keep things going. In the end it’s about our ability to hold on to the traditions being lost,” says Cavanaugh. Cavanaugh’s contributions to Butte do not end with Cavanaugh’s County Celtic. “Monica’s a great ambassador for Butte,” says Brendon McDonough, Festival Coordinator for the National Folk and the An Ri Ra Irish Festivals, “She’s always willing to help people out and she always puts other’s needs in place of her own. She’s constantly in motion working on projects. Being Irish in Butte is our identity, it’s who we are and her work pays tribute to those who came before us.” Monica Cavanaugh and her Butte store, Cavanaugh’s County Celtic connect all things Irish in Montana as a Celtic beacon for not only Butte, but for America. MSN

Roamin’ Rose Sullivan By Connie Daugherty Rose Sullivan is ninety years old, but she still goes to work five days a week. This perky, blueeyed Irish lass works as a corporate librarian for the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) in Butte. And she works because she likes to keep busy. She also volunteers at her church and travels whenever she can. “I love to travel,” she says. Born Rose Conwell in Kansas City, Kansas, Rose’s first traveling adventure was as a baby when her father moved the family to Red Lodge, Montana. It was a great place to grow up. Rose recalls, “We did a lot of ice skating and picking beans in the bean fields.” Rose’s work ethic was established early on by a father who believed his children should work even though they did not necessarily need the money. As soon as she finished high school, Rose was off to Dillon, for college. “In those days you went two years and then you taught with a certificate,” she explains. In no time at all she was on her way. Her first teaching job was in a “remote school called Victory,” near Boyd, Montana. During the summers, Rose served as a playground director at Girl Scout camps in Colorado and Oregon and later at the Twin Bridges Orphanage. “We were always busy,” she says. She also taught in Victor, Montana. This was during “the war” and Rose

found herself teaching more than English because so many of the men teachers were gone. “They assigned me Physiography - I didn’t know what it was,” she recalls. This was Rose’s first adventure into working with the sciences as she taught about the changes in the earth. “Every night I had to study,” she recalls. Still it was an interesting and challenging time. Rose also continued her own education. During one summer, she attended the Colorado College of Education, which was “supposed to be the best teaching school west of the Mississippi,” she says. After the end of World War II, Rose went back to Western Montana College and earned her teaching degree, with a major in English in 1947. She also met and married her husband, Neil, another teacher. They moved to Valier where Rose taught and

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Neil was the principal of a grade school. After four years, they transferred to Butte where Rose has been since. While raising their seven children, Rose did not teach regularly although she did plenty of substitute teaching and stayed involved in the community, helping out at church and joining a couple of bridge clubs. In 1978 after her children were grown, a friend who worked at NCAT told Rose about the assistant librarian position. “I

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think she wanted some company,” Rose says. Although Rose was not a librarian, she had worked in a library and decided to apply. She got the job. For the next three years, Rose worked with a librarian learning all the details about creating catalog records and running a small corporate library. She was trained in the Library of Congress call number system and learned how to request interlibrary loans of items they did not have in their library for NCAT personnel. In 1981, NCAT lost all of their contracts and had to lay everyone off for about 5 months. During that time, Rose and the NCAT librarian got creative and developed an alternative energy guide and course for a North Carolina Girl Scout organization. “We set up card tables in my living room,” she says. The text dealt with “all the stuff that NCAT was doing at the time - solar, wind, bio-fuel, and geothermal energy.” By the time NCAT received new contracts and started hiring again, the librarian had taken another job. “They asked me if I would come back and run the library and I said, sure,” Rose says. For the next ten years, that is exactly what she did. She trained herself in all aspects of librarianship and even went to the field office in Fayetteville, Arkansas to help with their collection twice a year. Rose has always loved to travel so in 1992 when she was seventy-two she decided to retire so she could travel more with her friends and family. Over the years, she has visited the England and the British Isles as well as Ireland multiple times, cruised both the upper and lower Danube, and taken trips to Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Hong Kong, China, Greece, Italy, and all fifty states. Rose has joined about fifteen Elderhostels with friends from her bridge group - the most

recent this past March. A few years ago, she tried to talk her friends into taking a trip through the Scandinavian countries, but they all thought they were getting too old for something that extensive - they are all in their 80s. “I plan to go with my daughters next year,” Rose says. So far, she has not talked anyone into floating the Nile River with her, but she has not given up on the idea. However, in 1997 the director of NCAT called and asked Rose if she would come back tto work, “just to help o out for awhile” until tthey could find someo one else to take over tthe library. That was tthirteen years ago and sshe is still there workiing a few hours each d day. Rose orders books ffor Butte and all the ffield offices around tthe country, maintains a shelf list and card ccatalog of everything iin the library, proccesses all interlibrary loans for NCAT employees, and creates original catalog records for new print publications when necessary. Like most libraries, the NCAT library does not have as many print publications as it once did. “So much is available on the internet,” Rose says. And Rose is no stranger to internet sources - “even the cataloging information is on the internet,” she says. When she is not working at NCAT Rose spends time with her children and 14 grandchildren. She volunteers at her church, continues to meet with her scripture group and her bridge clubs, and chairs the Board of Directors of the EdTech Credit Union. She is especially proud of her children, all of whom “have college degrees,” and her grandchildren. Family, friends, work and travel, Rose Sullivan’s life is complete and at ninety, she is content with today and eager for each tomorrow. MSN


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Shopping for Lutefisk Submitted by Julie Hollar Ole went into a store and asked the clerk where he could find the lutefisk. The clerk looked at Ole and asked, “Are you Norwegian?” Ole, clearly offended and angry, replied, “Well, yes I am. But, let me ask you something. If I asked you for Italian sausage, would you ask me if I was Italian? Or, if I asked you for German bratwurst, would you ask me if I was German? If I asked for a kosher hot dog, would you ask me if I was Jewish? Or, if I asked you for a taco, would you ask me if I was Mexican? Would ya, huh? Would ya?” The clerk answered, “Well, no. No I wouldn’t.” Ole continued, “If I asked you for some Irish whiskey, would you ask me if I was Irish? What about Canadian bacon? Would you ask me if I was Canadian?” “Well, I probably wouldn’t,” agreed the clerk. With self-indignation and even more angry, Ole said, “Well, all right then. Why did you ask me if I was Norwegian just because I asked for lutefisk?” The clerk replied, “Because you’re at Home Depot.” MSN

Lou Parrett Birdhouses

- Continued from cover houses are the ones with natural stuff on them. It’s what I call the knothole approach. If you find a rotten tree with a knothole, build around it,” he explains. He has taken to putting rock on about 90 percent of the houses, using pebbles he found in the Flathead area and locally. But not all the materials he uses are natural. “I shop the Walkerville dump and other dumps where I can find rusty things,” he says. Parrett has used rusted beer cans, license plates, barbed wire, discarded parts from cars, old saw blades, weeds, old shoes and boots, and even parts from an old rocking chair. This last was from the bottom part of the rocker, where the ruptured springs were. “I didn’t recognize it for what it was at first,” Parrett comments. “I found a bed that had to have come across on a covered wagon, but I never used it. I just keep it for show,” he adds. Some days of the hunt for supplies particularly stand out in Parrett’s memory. “Gathering materials for building proved quite exciting when I reached over a log to retrieve a piece of bark only to find a rattlesnake laying claim to the treasure. I lurched back and had to grab my pooch by the tail and drag him away from the log,” Parrett says. “On another adventure I was driving down a dirt road to a favorite fishing hole when I spied a gnarled log in the stream along the road. Slamming on the brakes, I leaped out of the van, jumped the fence, and waded into the creek to get the log. I manhandled the find over the fence with a grin that only a hunter with a prize trophy would have. My pardner only shook his head and muttered, ‘Louie... you’re nuts!’” Rattlesnakes aside, the whole project suits Parrett to a T. Roaming the hills looking for materials speaks to his lifelong love of fishing and the outdoors. He often carries a fishing rod. His creative side surfaced long ago, too. When he taught elementary art for a few years, he was known for his wild and crazy projects, such as having the students paint his car. Still, building birdhouses was a hobby he fell into. “The whole thing started with the wife picking up a two-dollar bird feeder at a discount store,” he explains. Later, when he ran across a handbuilt birdhouse at a Saturday market in Portland, Oregon, it inspired him. He could make his wife a birdhouse. At first, the challenge was simply that to build a birdhouse. But one thing led to another and the next thing you know he and his wife took on an entire new lifestyle, creating a fancy landscape for the yard. They started with merely a lawn, but now their home has a curved stone walkway, a pond with running water, five flowerbeds, nine occupied birdhouses in the trees, and a large “buffet” for the birds. Their efforts were rewarded a few years ago when they made the top three for the Yard of the Year in Butte. From all this activity, the birdhouses somehow emerged. “What surprises me is how much enjoyment I get out of my hobby,” he says. “The original challenge was just to build a birdhouse, but there’s just so much you can do with it.” With a grandchild on the scene, Parrett may let up a bit on the birdhouses, but do not expect him to be giving up his hobby anytime soon. Perhaps building another couple thousand bird boxes will start to staunch the flow of fresh ideas. Readers who are interested in birdhouses may find Parrett at a few area arts and crafts shows each year, or they can call him at 406-491-4760. MSN

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