I was asked a few months ago if I would join the Board of a group called Boomers in Athens to help decide the best way to spend a grant given by the Institute of Museum and Library Service to investigate “boomers” and their activities. I had vaguely heard of “boomers” but wasn’t sure if they were something to do with lighthouses or the neighbour’s dogs who are always called Boomer for some unfathomable reason, except when they get two of them and then there’s Boomer and BJ (i.e. Boomer Junior). I suppose if they got three there would also be a BS…….
However, back to the Board invitation. Since I had just been turned down by the library board to which I’d applied to be a member, a board with a lot of responsibility but little money, it seemed fun, if a little ironic, that I would be chosen for a well funded board with a very interesting mission. So I agreed. The main idea is to show others what sorts of learning and enjoyment are available to people of a certain age. Since many in this group are discovering the joys of art, particularly fiber art, it seemed a good idea for me to volunteer to do something about this activity. Especially as the general public think quilts are mainly boring utilitarian things one can make (or, far more easily, buy) for the bed. They don’t realise the potential that cloth, scissors, needles and thread have for all kinds of physical and mental development, not to say a whole load of satisfying fun and fulfillment. Let’s face it by the time you’re into midlife there begins to be a need to make things that say something about yourself, to engage in an activity that forces you to explore what you really feel about things. You’ve had the formal education, found a mate, had offspring (two or four legged!), got the wheels and the roof, the annoying boss (I had many and most (but not all!) were definite proofs of the Peter principle), a selection of electronic appliances etc and now you’re looking for something more. It’s time to see if there are any wings in that chrysalis!
It was decided that we would embark on a series of “community snapshots” to reveal some of the possibilities available and, with the lure of a free lunch afterwards, I volunteered to do the first one. I gave an abbreviated version of a Power Point presentation that is part of my lecture/workshop series: Inspiration to Design.
So here it is. Be sure to note the built in technical difficulties!! They were the hardest bit to add in – I can’t tell you what we had to do to get the dog barking at the electricians half way through. You didn’t know that a webcast should include workmen and a dog??? Not sure if the dog was a B, a BJ or simply BS though!
All comments will be very helpful for future “snapshots”, and any questions will be answered (minus the dog!)
If you have been, thanks for reading! Elizabeth
PS at the end of the video conference, there’s a photo of me and my good friend Julia – I’m the old duck on the left and she is the young vibrant lady on the right!! Taken outside the King’s Arms by the River Ouse in York! If you persevere through the audience’s questions, I’m afraid you look at this picture for a long time!! Which is very boring, and we need to figure out how to adjust that in the conference format, if that is possible.