MEMPHIS MENSA NEWSLETTER
September 2010 Vol. 29, No. 9
ExComm/Officers ..………………………………………………….….... ….2
September Anniversaries/Birthdays/New Members..........................…..3
LocSec's Corner......................……..................................................... ….4
What Mensa Means To Me ….................................................................5
Monthly Gathering ...................................................................................6
Scholarship Awards ................................................................................6
Draft Executive Committee Meeting Minutes...........................................7
LogicTeaser –“Tickets” …........................................................................7
Calendar/Events Listing........................................…....….….. 8–9, 10–11
September Poem.................................................................................. 11
2010 Memphis Mensa “Wordsmithing” Contest......................…….......12
Mensa Leadership Training...................................................................13
Mensa Test “Day”..................................................................................14
Letters FROM the Editor(s) – ...............................................................15
-2- Memphis Mensa Newsletter
Executive Committee Other Officers (Continued)
Local Secretary Membership
Rich Olcott Jami Francis
Assistant Local Secretary and Ombudsman
North Mississippi Coordinator James Lenschau, Esq.
Joe Baker Martin, Tate, Morrow & Marston, P.C.
662-280-8862 6410 Poplar Avenue, Suite 1000
Memphis TN 38119
Treasurer and 901-328-2405 ; 901-581-2477 (cell)
Calendar Editor Ombudsman@memphis.us.mensa.org
901-413-7238 Poet Laureate
Treasurer@memphis.us.mensa.org J.R. Dunworth
Publisher and Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
901-386-2251, 901-481-7295 (cell) Program Coordinator
Member at Large and
Gifted Children Coordinator Publicity & PR
Ed Raper Open Position
901-737-6297 ; 901-508-1843 (cell)
Other Officers David Shiffman
Scholarship Chairman Testing@memphis.us.mensa.org
901-252-7545 Region 5 Vice Chairman (RVC5)
Scholarship@memphis.us.mensa.org Nick Sanford
Yahoo! Forum Host MensaRVC5@gmail.com
901-840-3864 S.I.G.H.T. Coordinator
DaveDaveDave@juno.com Susan Hirsch
Jackson TN Coordinator
Alan Rasmussen WebMaster
731-664-5805 Eric Peabody
Jonesboro AR Coordinator
Jane Overall Facebook Host
870-931-9322 Trisha Nelson
September 2010 -3-
Brian Lee 38 David Joseph Gray 34
Marcia F Denman 19 Mallory Taylor Coop 1
Mary P Custer 1 Hunter Gullick 1
Matthew C Gulotta 1 Bobbye Jeanne Robbins 1
Jacob Siler 1 Michael R Thomas 1
Noah Thompson 1
Joseph K Hazen 1st John M Walker 17th
Jason M Weiland 5th David B Craig 19th
Judith Wright Dulaney 8th Randall E Ashley 20th
David Galloway 11th Rich Olcott 20th
Bobby Earl Guest 14th Patrica L Kessler 25th
James Luke Boswell 16th Robert Bruce Cameron 28th
Miranda R Baker 17th Conor P Bolich 30th
Carmen Roberts Cordova Bruce M Kueck Cordova
Melody Kennon Smith Millington Laura M Gardiner Memphis
Matthew Hailey Germantown
Welcome Transferring Member
Paul Richlmi to Memphis
No Reinstatements or Renewals Reported.
-4- Memphis Mensa Newsletter
I encountered two interesting statistics this week. The first was provided
by Dave Barger Jr in his excellent talk to our July gathering. He told us that,
when a businessman is thinking about how to make use of the Internet's so-
cial media, it's important to remember that 80% of the people who will see
the firm's postings are “spectators,” that is, people who would rather be in
the audience than on stage. If you're using the Internet to gauge your mar-
ket, and you should, you need to remember that only 20% of your readers
are likely to tell you how you're doing.
The other statistic was in Devora Zack's book, Networking for People
Who Hate Networking. In her analysis, the people who hate to network typ-
ically find stress in a party atmosphere – they prefer to do their thinking
alone and their talking in groups or two or three. By contrast, the natural
networkers gain energy from being with other people and prefer to work out
their ideas verbally. In pop-psych terms, the first group are introverts and
the second group are extroverts. (There's also a middle group, the centro-
verts.) The book itself is about strategies for leveraging introvert strengths
when networking is called for.
Early researchers thought that about 30% of the general population
were introverts. Recent work says that the fraction is about 50%. In Zack's
talk at the Detroit AG, over 60% of the attendees tested out as introverts,
with another 15% as centroverts.
So what's this got to do with Memphis Mensa? A recurrent question be-
fore the ExComm is, “What do our Mensans want?” One common answer
is, “Intelligent conversation,” so we try to create opportunities for that. We
have TGIFs and event parties for the extroverts who enjoy their conversation
in a noisy venue. For the introverts who prefer quieter, more structured dis-
course we have the Literary Discussion Group for the book lovers and the
Financial SIG for those with an interest in interest. And of course, we have
the Monthly Gathering for everyone.
So, if half of Memphis Mensa is extroverts and if we threw a party over
100 folks would come. Putting it mildly, our parties and Friday evening get-
togethers have been sparsely attended. On the other side of the house, if
half of us are introverts and if we hosted a talk of vital interest to all, over
100 should pack the house. Our small groups stay very small. Does that
mean that we're not picking the right topics? Or the right meeting structure?
Or the right venue? Or the right evening?
Frankly, we on the ExComm are bewildered. You've entrusted us to
bring you the kinds of social interaction that you've paid good money to join
Mensa to get. We want to do the job you elected us for, but unless some of
the silent 80% clue us in, we're going to have to keep on guessing, and ap-
parently missing. If you've got a suggestion, please give me a call or drop
me an email.
September 2010 -5-
What Mensa Means To Me
by Alan Baltis
of Cleveland Area Mensa
For those who were not able to hear it in person at the AG10 gala
anniversary banquet, here is a recreation of the moving speech that
brought down the house.
I was smart early. One of those kids who played chess with adults, could
read cryptograms off the page, could solve puzzles like Soma and Instant
Insanity so fast some people were sure I was cheating. I learned, as many
smartfolk do, to rein that in. To not always be first with my hand up, to not
win every game.
I realized that people often cheer loudly for athletes because they can
see how it's done. That gal ran a little faster, that guy shot the ball more skill-
fully. People think, if I had his natural gifts, trained as hard as her, I could be
a champion, too.
Not so for smarts. There are no moving parts that show you calculating
square roots in your head -- shouldn't even be able to do that. Being too
smart smacks of witchcraft. Working ahead, knowing things I shouldn't, didn't
please many of my teachers. So the shields went up, and though I burnt
brightly, the arc light of my intelligence remained concealed.
Then I discovered Mensa.
In the early 1990s, I went to HalloweeM, the immersive entire weekend.
Programs on every topic. Tons of games, and far from the "automatic win"
that I was used to - these people looked five moves ahead, too! Feasted on
all the pizza, peanut M&Ms and Diet Dr Pepper that I could handle. Stayed
up late, got up early - a little kid who didn't want to sleep because he might
I met hundreds of new people, made dozens of new friends. I met more
brilliant, beautiful ladies in a weekend than I had in years of conventional
dating. Laughed so hard my face and sides hurt for days afterwards. Came
away with recommendations for books, movies, games and music, and
shared my favorites right back.
It wasn't a fluke. Every dinner, every games day, every gathering has
continued to be stimulating, challenging, delightful. Mensa is where I can
shed the Harrison Bergeron-style restraints that the mundane world still asks
of me. In Mensa I can be as smart, quick, odd, funny as I really am.
Mensans are not only accepting of it, we revel in it. We get the Vonnegut ref-
erence and redouble with an Ice-Nine and "so it goes."
Mensa is like leaving the gray world behind and going to Oz, with all its
colors and delights and flying monkeys. I'm never going back to Kansas.
-6- Memphis Mensa Newsletter
Dave Barger Jr, gave a very interesting presentation about social media
and the opportunities and challenges businesses face using it as a new
marketing channel. Dave gave examples of how successful businesses are
using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media to expand commu-
nications with customers beyond highly targeted and location based advert-
ising. Dave emphasized that companies that fall into the trap of using social
media as just another broadcast channel, will miss the mark with their cus-
tomers and lose the opportunity to truly listen to and learn from their custom-
ers. The emphasis Dave placed on true customer communications was re-
freshing. The presentation was fast paced and very more detailed than re-
ported here, contact Dave Barger Jr. at www.lunaweb.net for more informa-
“I don't care what you write about,
me as long as you as you get my URL right” ;-)
Did you know that:
• More than 4,600 students competed;
• There were 165 scholarships awarded;
• That the total value of all awards was $73,700;
• Individual awards are from $300 to $1,000;
• This years winners were from 41 states;
• That 89 local Mensa groups provide volunteers;
• There are more than 400 volunteers who run the program;
• Scholarship winners' education plans range from associate degrees
at community colleges through doctorate degrees at major universit-
• About 22 percent of the winners are working on advanced degrees
including medicine, physical therapy and law;
• A few scholarships are set aside for Mensa members and their de-
pendents, but most are open to the public;
• Including national, regional and local awards there are 13 separate
awards that one application and essay apply for;
• Applications are available from September 15th until January 15th
• Our local group had 2 winners this year;
• Applications must be downloaded from the Mensa Foundation web-
site, because they are customized by state and local Mensa group.
September 2010 -7-
Draft Executive Committee Meeting
— August 10th, 2010
— The meeting was opened at 8:30 PM at Panera's at 4530 Poplar by
Local Secretary Dr. Rich Olcott. Other members of the Executive
Committee present were Joe Baker and David Shiffman. The
minutes of July 13th ExComm meeting were read and approved with
a minor spelling correction. Board Member and Treasurer Jami
Francis came by before the ExComm meeting and left financial
— Rich Olcott reported that Jamie Francis reported a Treasury balance
of $4,007.82. $2,170 of $3, 680 budgeted has been spent. Written
details were provided.
— There are no new announcements at this time by the Bylaws
— No interest has been expressed in the Bob Cox LDW workshop and
no money in its support has been approved by the ExComm.
— The ExComm approved up to $150 to rent a Mensa testing room for
— The $50 budgeted for the Domain name rental is to be removed.
$25 had been approved and spent on this item.
— The Executive Committee Meeting was adjourned at 8:55 PM by
The kid was listening to his MP3 player, bopping away and looking at noth-
ing, as he mooched alone to the booth and slapped down a buck. Ride tick-
ets are 40 cents each. The kid said nothing to her, nor did he make any
meaningful motions, but the booth attendant confidently gave him two tickets
and 20 cents change. How did she know that he wanted two tickets rather
than one? (answer on page 11)
-8- Memphis Mensa Newsletter
All events subject to change. Please check
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday
29 30 31 August 1
5 6 Labor Day 7 8
12 13 14 15
6:30 pm MG at Scholarship
Panera Bread Applications
8-9 pm ExComm
19 20 21 22
2:00pm-5:00pm NOON - M.M.
26 27 28 29
at the Milton's
NOTE: This calendar is a representation of the ONLINE calendar as
of the Newsletter deadline. The online calendar to inform you about
both Mensa and non-Mensa items of interest to Mensans. Only
items posted BY THE DEADLINE will appear in the Newsletter.
September 2010 -9-
our online calendar for latest information.
Thursday Friday Saturday
2 3 4
5:30pm Memphis TGIF
@Patrick's, 4972 Park
9 10 11
5:30pm - Memphis
TGIF@ The Belmont
16 17 18
6:00pm Memphis TGIF @
Los Pilares 6249 Stage
Rd - Bartlett
23 24 25
7pm to 9 pm - 6:00pm- Memphis TGIF @
Literary Discussion The Pizza Shack. Not
Group @ the Sufka's everyday pizza
“The Science of
30 1 October 2 October
5:30pm Memphis TGIF
@Patrick's, 4972 Park
ANY member may have an appropriate item posted here – just
Email the information to the Editor, Editor@memphis.us.mensa.org.
If you plan to post frequently, please get instructions from the Editor.
NOTE 2: You must provide contact information!
- 10 - Memphis Mensa Newsletter
September Events… (plus)
Fri, Sep 3, 5:00p-7:00p Jonesboro Temperance - Godsey's 226 S. Main
Jonesboro AR RSVP to Janie (870)219-7555 voice or text
Fri, Sep 3, 5:30pm – Memphis TGIF at Patrick's, 4972 Park Ave. Located
on Park just west of Mendenhall/Eastgate Shopping Center. It has great
burgers and great prime rib.
Fri, Sep 10, 5:30pm – Memphis TGIF at The Belmont Grill 4970 Poplar Av.
at Mendenhall Contact Trisha1832@gmail.com for additional information
or to RSVP.
Tue, Sep 14, 6:30pm – 8:00 – Membership meeting at Panera Bread
Co., in the Laurelwood Shopping Center on Poplar west of Perkins. Mensa
has the private meeting room on your right as you enter. Meet/greet/eat at
6:30 - 7, presentation follows. Dr J K Arnette will discuss his research into
what Near-Death Experiences may tell us about the structure of the
universe. Dr Arnette has degrees in Chemistry and Psychology and is
entering the Philosophy program at UM.
Tue, Sep 14, 8:00pm - 9:00 – ExComm meeting at Panera Bread Co., in
the Laurelwood Shopping Center on Poplar west of Perkins. Mensa has
the private meeting room on your right as you enter. All members are
welcome and are encouraged to attend.
Fri., Sep 17, 6pm – Memphis TGIF at Los Pilares 6249 Stage Rd. - Bartlett
Unbelievably good Mexican food and great margaritas! RSVP - Robert
Lyon. email@example.com For info call (901) 383-1122
Sun., Sep 19, 2:00p-5:00p Rich's 70th Birthday Open House
Help Rich celebrate his Big 7-oh. Light refreshments, soft drinks, maybe
even a cake. Rich Olcott's house, 1853 Snowden, Memphis. Call 901-725-
6211 for details.
Mon, Sep 20, NOON – M.M. Newsletter Deadline!
Thu, Sep 23, 7 to 9 pm – Literary Gathering at Pete & Aimee Sufka's, 67
West Calhoun in South Bluffs. Please key in “430” at the security gate so
that we can let you in. For directions or other activity-related information,
please contact Aimee at (901) 252-9814.
For September, we will read and discuss The Science of Liberty --
Democracy, Reason, and the Laws of Nature, by Timothy Ferris. The author
says that politically the US is tri-polar, not bi-polar, and the debate has been
seriously muddled because of that confusion.
September 2010 - 11 -
MORE September Events
Fri., Sep 24, 6pm – Memphis TGIF at The Pizza Shack, 4523 Summer Av.
680-7900. This place is NOT Domino's. Family restaurant pizza with a
different character. Whole pie or by the slice. They have several bar-b-que
combinations. It's hard to find behind where Littlefield's Jewelry was. It is
easier to go into the Lowe's parking lot from Perkins and stay to the right
going to the right corner of the building. You will see The Pizza Shack to the
right. For additional information contact David at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wed, Aug 25, 6:30pm – FSM at the Milton's, 350 Fernway. Fold, Staple,
and Mutilate (The Newsletter that is...) The usual pizza and beverages, or
bring something to share 901-283-0406
Fri, Oct 1, 5:30pm – Memphis TGIF at Patrick's, 4972 Park Ave. Located
on Park just west of Mendenhall/Eastgate Shopping Center. It has great
burgers and great prime rib.
Check the MM Web calendar (http://prem.calendars.net/mmensa )
for updates or new additions.
Logicteaser . . .
A...The kidput down four quarters. If he'd wanted only one ticket,
two quarters would have been enough.
JANE AUSTEN’S NOVELS
Most of them have been made into movies
And are available on DVDs.
The locations, the people, the costumes –
Early nineteenth century. Romance looms.
Ignorance and error build barriers.
But in the end, they all are marriers.
You’ll love each heroine once you’ve met her.
The movies are good; the books are better.
J R Dunworth,
Memphis Mensa Poet Laureate
- 12 - Memphis Mensa Newsletter
Memphis Mensa 2010 Wordsmithing Contest
We have done this before, but with rather narrow guidelines. This time,
you choose whatever form you like, with only two requirements. Your entry
(or entries) MUST be suitable for publishing in this newsletter. That means it
must be “family friendly”, and that it must be static visually. Simple enough,
if it is text – either poetry or prose. I can offer up to two pages (about 1,000
words) for each of the TWO prize winning members. You may submit as
many entries as you choose, but can receive no more than ONE of the $25
gift certificate prizes.
Some of you might wonder why this is “word-smithing” instead of writ-
ing. The answer is that you might come up with a novel way to use words,
and we do not want to limit your creativity. The thought came to me while
observing a commercial about credit scores that featured animated num-
bers. I don't really expect to stretch this definition too far, but if you think
your unique entry has artistic value, I am willing to solicit assistance in
judging its merit.
In addition, ALL non-winning entries will be considered for publication at
a later date, unless accompanied by a request not to do so – and we hope
that you will NOT make that request. One of the reasons for this contest is
to encourage ALL members to submit newsletter content. We KNOW that
every Mensan has the ability to produce something worthy of these pages –
and that does include YOU, NO MATTER YOUR AGE!
Because this is Mensa, extra credit will be given to humor, satire, irony,
or other such amplified meaning – including puns and “invented” words that
enhance the total effect. However, adherence to recognizable verbal forms
of expression such as Haiku, Limerick, Sonnet, or others not listed here is
probably worth more. But the infamous “Bulwer-Lytton” sentence (bad writ-
ing at its best) could win – and so could some kind of crossword puzzle! I
have done just a little investigating about a few possible forms, to get you
started. Check out page 8 of the August newsletter if you are interested.
I will recruit others to evaluate works that I am not competent to judge.
So please submit your entry – or entries – because if you do not enter the
competition, I might come looking for you to act as a judge.!
Please Email your entries to Editor@memphis.us.mensa.org – or postal
mail to: Dave Shiffman, 3144 Keats Rd, Memphis TN 38134. Deadline is
the September 14 general meeting, We hope to announce the winners in
the October newsletter, and award the prizes at the October meeting. You
will not need to be present to win, but why would you want to skip a Mensa
Dave Shiffman, Editor
September 2010 - 13 -
MENSA LEADERSHIP TRAINING
Memphis Mensa depends on volunteers for its existence and vitality.
Not just on the elected and appointed officers, but also on all those mem-
bers who do what they can to help the group.
But it isn't a one-way street! American Mensa feels so strongly that we
need volunteers who have knowledge and understanding of Mensa and
what is required to keep the local groups running smoothly that it presents
Leadership Development Workshops (LDW) several times each year. One
of these will be presented for Region 5, November 19 - 21 in Greenville, SC.
If you care about Mensa and would like to be involved, you are invited
to come and learn with and from past, current, and future leaders of Mensa.
Although focused on leadership within Mensa, this valuable training is
broadly applicable in many circumstances. There is NO CHARGE for
Registration or meals. However, attendees are responsible for registering
in advance due to limited capacity, and for their own transportation and
The Region 5 LDW will be held at Drury Hotel & Suites, 10 Carolina
Point Parkway, Greenville, SC 29607. Rooms are $74.00 + Tax per night
for 1-4 occupants, with rates guaranteed until November 5, 2010. To book
your room, phone 864-288-4401 or Book it Fast at www.druryhotels.com.
Use the name Mensa and code 2094243. For information or to register for
the LDW send an e-mail to email@example.com or go to
LDW Registration is FREE, but required as space is limited.
E-mail ___________________________________ Phone______________
Present Office (if any)___________________________________________
Mail to Bob Cox, 509 Bethel Dr., Mauldin, SC 29662 or
send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 14 - Memphis Mensa Newsletter
Mensa Test “Day” October +16 +
This year, October has FIVE week-ends – which gives it “elbow room”
to accommodate the 5 weekends (plus 20 included weekdays) that com-
prise the designated 30-day Mensa Test Day (MTD) period.
This is very important to American Mensa, and even more important to
Memphis Mensa because we can take advantage of the national MTD ad-
vertising and promotion. Also, this year we have a new opportunity – a
share of $500 from National for LOCAL MTD promotion.
Testing is our primary source of new Memphis Mensans, as well as a
significant source of revenue for our group. And our Proctors are the horses
that pull that wagon. Most of us have been proctors for several years, and
have administered more tests than we can count. But we have at least one
Proctor In Training, who intends to go through the short “apprenticeship” that
provides the training and practice to join the ranks of certified proctors.
Memphis Mensa has more proctors for our group size than any other
group I know of, and this is on purpose. Each proctor must test annually to
remain certified under normal circumstances, so the more proctors we have,
the more tests will be offered to our candidates – and as well, the more op-
portunities will be available for new proctor training!
But we could schedule a test every single day and NEVER achieve our
objectives UNLESS we have candidates to test – and that is where YOU –
every Memphis Mensan – can give us the help we need. If you are reading
these words, you have persevered through almost 5 paragraphs of “inside
baseball” discussion – and clearly, you are the kind of member who cares
about the group and how it functions. We need to grow, and in particular, we
need to bring younger members on board.
So if you know some smart folks (besides your Mensa friends) who
would enjoy getting together with other smart folks, PLEASE invite them to
check us out. Google Mensa, and do the same for Memphis Mensa. Please
invite them to join us at ANY Friday evening TGIF gaggle – The location and
time are always posted on our online calendar. And by the way, you are wel-
come, as well!
And if you think some promotional materials might help pique their in-
terest, just let any ExComm member know. We will be happy to obtain items
such as business-size cards, pencils, bookmarks, sample Bulletins and MM
newsletters, and other stuff. I will bring some
samples to the next meeting, so you can see what
Mensa has to offer.
Dave Shiffman, M.M. Proctor Coordinator
September 2010 - 15 -
Letters FROM the Editor….
This September newsletter is different, because I have received a gift of
leisure from Brent Milton, who kindly offered to edit this newsletter after I did
the postal sort and delivery last month, when Brent and family vacationed. I
tend to obsess about things like this newsletter – and I must say, it still
happened to an extent – but I forced myself to stay out of the way other than
part of this column and the “Mensa Test Day” article that follows from an-
other task of mine.
But in addition to thanking Brent for pinch-hitting for me here, I do want
to plead with all of you to start NOW finding Mensa candidates to take our
tests in October. I hope you will read the MTD article on page 14 for a better
picture of what our proctors do, but if not, I still URGE you to start NOW to
help us build our membership.
And I have one more request for you. Turn back to page 12, about our
Wordsmith contest. At this time I have only 3 entries, and I K N O W that
we have 270 people out there with the verbal skills to enter this contest.
Mensans know words, so you have NO excuse. And the deadline is Tues-
day evening, 09/14, at the regular monthly meeting. Don't forget – TWO $25
Dave Shiffman, Editor
September, summers end and a new school year, has always seemed
to me to be a time for a “fresh” start.
Is it just me or did you like to get back to school, too? Back to the friends
and back to the books and back to the days when you felt that you could do
anything if you just worked a little harder. Every school year had a reward all
of its own. A new friend, a new teacher, or best of all a new idea.
Here's a new idea, make a fresh start with Mensa this month. We could
use your help and you really do belong. Come to a meeting, or a book club,
or volunteer to help with the newsletter, or the scholarship committee. Come
to a party.
Mensa has given me more than I can ever repay. Many of us feel that
way, and we enjoy the company. Come and join us.
Administrivia Memphis Mensa PERIODICALS
c/o 1229 Corporate Drive West PAID
The Memphis Mensa Newsletter (ISSN #0745- Arlington, TX 76006-6103 MEMPHIS, TN
3426) is published monthly by Memphis PERMIT NO.
Mensa, 3144 Keats Road, Memphis, TN 686870
38134. Annual subscription to members of
Memphis Mensa is included with the annual
dues; the cost is $8.00 to nonmembers.
Memphis Mensa is local group #380 of
American Mensa, Ltd. Copyright © 2010 by
Memphis Mensa and the individual authors. ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED
Any Mensa publication may reprint our material
provided appropriate credit is given to the ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED
Memphis Mensa Newsletter and the specific
authors. The decision to print material and the
editing of the material is at the sole discretion
of the Memphis Mensa Newsletter editor.
Opinions expressed herein are those of the
individual contributors, not those of the editor,
Memphis Mensa, nor American Mensa, Ltd.,
unless so indicated. Mensa, as an
organization, has no opinions.
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to
Memphis Mensa, c/o American Mensa, Ltd.,
1229 Corporate Drive West, Arlington, TX