Activities September-November  2012


Wed. September 12  Regular Meeting at the Inn at Newtown

Wed. September 19  Board  of Directors Meeting

Wed. September 26  Regular Meeting

Sat.  September 39  Newtown Health Day

Sat. October  6  Orchard Hill Cleanup

Wed. October 10 Regular Meeting

Wed. October 17 Board Meeting

Wed. October 24 Regular Meeting

Wed. November 7  Regular Meeting

Wed. November 14     Board of Directors Meeting

Friday November 16 Brookfield Lions Breakfast


September 2012 Presidentís letter


        Welcome everyone to our 2012-13 Lions year. Iím excited about our upcoming year and I hope that you are as well. Every new year brings new challenges, new experiences and new faces to our club.


        Our Lions have been busy this summer. We took a cruise around the Thimble Islands and enjoyed dinner at the Chowder Pot III in July. We have planted, watered and harvested produce from our row in the Victory Garden for our town food pantries. We have taken our Mustang to many events and our ticket sales are running neck and neck with our best year. Letís hope that the weather continues to cooperate. Lastly, we marched and collected used eyeglasses in the Newtown Labor Day Parade and made a good accounting of ourselves as usual.


          I am most excited about our new meeting location; The Inn at Newtown. Itís great to be back in Newtown for our meetings. We are undoubtedly closer to where most of our members live and thatís a plus. The Inn has put together a very nice package for us and are very happy to have our business. Thanks to all who participated in our search process for our new location. I think that we did well.


         I am looking forward to seeing as many of you as possible for our first meeting of the year on Wednesday September 12th. The first meeting of the year is always a great time to catch up with our friends and fellow Lions since we adjourned in June.


   See you there!



Why We Must Always Use Good Grammar 


On his seventy-fifth  birthday, a man got a gift certificate from his wife. The certificate paid for a visit to a medicine man living on a nearby reservation who was rumored to have a wonderful cure for erectile dysfunction. After being persuaded, he drove to the reservation, handed his ticket to the medicine man and wondered what he was in for.

The old man handed a potion to him, and with a grip on his shoulder warned, ďThis is a powerful medicine. You take only a teaspoonful, and then say '1-2-3.'
When you do, you will become more manly than you have ever been in your life, and
 you can perform as long as you want."

The man was encouraged. As he walked away, he turned and asked, "How do I stop the medicine from working?" "Your partner must say '1-2-3-4,'" he responded, "but when she does, the medicine will not work again until the next full moon."

He was very eager to see if it worked so he went home, showered, shaved, took a spoonful of the medicine, and then invited his wife to join him in the bedroom. When she came in, he took off his clothes and said, "1-2-3!" Immediately, he was the manliest of men. His wife was excited and began throwing off her clothes, and then she asked, "What was the 1-2-3 for?"

And that, boys and girls, is why we should never end our sentences with a preposition, because we could end up with a
dangling participle.

.                                                           Doings of the Pride


             Ed Miklesewski had an exciting bike ride  early this summer when he took part in the New York City Bike Tour on May 12.  Riding his ďcomfortĒ bike where you sit up straight rather that stooping over the handle bars, he traversed all five boroughs, up and down hills and across bridges. The Verrazano Bridge to Staten Island he said was particularly a killer. The tour was forty-two miles in all.  When he looked around he saw that about 95% of the participants were younger than he, most of them considerably so.  Though tired at the end, Ed was most glad he had done it. . . . Also since the last newsletter Gary Storms had a great father-son adventure.  He and all three sons rafted  through the Grand Canyon in Arizona. There were three or four rafts in the group each with about four people and a guide.  The guides rotated.  Gary reports that the scenery was terrific and the ride very pleasant but not as full of rapids as he had expected. Each night they set up a tent and ate the food supplied by the company.  A great father-son experience, I am sure. . . . There is a group of Lions  from the Methodist Church who go out to breakfast after each service.  This year Lions Christensen, Kovacs and Stakel and  spouses  and two other couples took it a step further and went to-Ireland..  Jon reports that they had a wonderful guide for the whole week who took them around in a van.  He was very informative on the history of Ireland.  He also pointed out not only was Ireland very green visually but they prided themselves on their green movement; for example there are no plastic bottles in Ireland.  One night they actually stayed in an Irish castle which they enjoyed very much.    They saw part of the Ring of Kerry, the cliffs of Mohr,  Kilkenny, Cork, Kilarney and Dingle.  They enjoyed visiting Irish pubs, especially the ones where Irishmen sang. . . .    Our president and wife spent a fun filled week in Charleston, Rhode Island with three grandchildren.  I bet they came home more tired than when they left! . . .


 Jerry and Sheila Cole also spent a week at the beach.  They were celebrating their daughterís wedding.  Liz and her new husband work in Woodís Hole, Massachusetts so the festivities were centered around that area.  After the wedding party left, the Coles stayed on for a few more relaxing days. . . Jim and Barbara Manville also journeyed northward.  They spent a week in Bar Harbor, Maine.  They also spent quite a bit of time bicycling in Arcadia National Park.  Especially the first day, the up hill ride was daunting and Jim admitted to having to do some walking.  Later days proved easier and, all in all, it was an enjoyable activity. . . ..Jon Christensen has had some bad news.  For some time he has had problems with floaters in his eye.  For some time he ignored the symptoms figuring that he was just over tired.  However, he was finally checked out and it was found that he had fluid under the retina.  With medicine this may heal naturally but, if not, there will have to be surgery with a complicated recovery procedure. Keep him in your thoughts and prayers. . .


History Lesson - Use of the Middle Finger

Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers. Without the middle finger it would be impossible to draw the renowned English longbow and therefore they would be incapable of fighting in the future.

This famous English longbow was made of the native English yew tree, and the act of drawing the longbow was known as 'plucking the yew' (or 'pluck yew').

Much to the bewilderment of the French, the English won a major upset and began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated French, saying, See, we can still pluck yew!

Since 'pluck yew' is rather difficult to say, the difficult consonant cluster at the beginning has gradually changed to an easier letter to say, the letter  ĎF', and thus the words often used in conjunction with the one-finger-salute!

It is also because of the pheasant feathers on the arrows used with the longbow that the symbolic gesture is known as 'giving the bird.'

Arenít history lessons terrific!


.                                               Focus on Our Wives


With friendly, cheerful Donna DíAllesandro the Lions have had a double whammy!  She was the good wife of Frank Ploski for a number of years and was glad when he joined the Lions.  Unfortunately, Frank died and Donna was left a widow.  However, through her career as a mental health and substance abuse councilor, she met August DíAllesandro, a fellow councilor, and after a while she became a smiling bride again.  Not only that but because she thought the Lions to be such a good group, she urged Augie to join and he did.  So Donna has given the Lions a double whammy.  Thanks Donna! 


Originally from Poland, Donna first sojourned to America in 1974 but soon returned to Poland.   In 1976, she came back to the U.S. and married Frank.  Always working to improve herself,  she soon enrolled in Fairfield University  earning a second masterís degree and greatly improving her English. An enthusiastic American, about ten years ago she became a citizen. Just recently she and Augie had the pleasure of going back to Poland to celebrate her 53rd high school reunion.  It was great fun she reports and also commented with pride that Augie was a good sport, even though he  didnít understand a lot of what was being said.  


Since she retired Donna has been   involved in a number of activities.    For a time she sang with the Sweet Adelines.  A person who likes books, she has been a member of a local book club. She has also been active for a long time with the International Club, a group she especially enjoys.  And what a good cook she is! Those of us who have been fortunate enough to have part of the Progressive Dinner at her home certainly will attest to that.


We hope you get a chance to become acquainted with friendly Donna DíAllesandro, our Lionsí Double Whammy!


Book Review: Exile by Richard North Patterson

                                    By Lion George Arfaras


Exile is a crime novel. It involves the American court system. In addition it involves the Palestinian and Israeli difficulties. The main characters are American David Wolfe, a Jewish attorney whose future appears to be headed towards a political career, the Israeli Prime Minister who is in the United States seeking to broker a peace plan between the Israeli and Palestinians and Hana Arif, a Palestinian woman and her husband who are also visiting the U.S. to counter the Prime Ministerís peace plan.


After making a speech to Israeli supporters in San Francisco, the Prime Minister  is assassinated by two suicide bombers. Davidís future plans for marriage and his entering into politics go south when he agrees to represent the Palestinian couple, Hanna Arif and her militant Palestinian husband, who become people of interest in the assassination of the Israeli Prime Minister.


Hana had been David Wolfeís lover, and his true love, while both attended Harvard law school. However, her parents had made arrangements for her to marry another, per their custom,  so she disappeared from Davidís life and he hadnít seen her for many years.  Nevertheless, he takes the case and as David maneuvers through the many twists and turns the reader is exposed to facts regarding the difficulties that the Israeliís face within their own government as well as the many problems the Palestinian encounter plus the many Arab factions attempting to infiltrate and influence them.


Richard North Patterson knows how to tell not only a great story but also to offer much present day information regarding geopolitics. He explains in great detail the turmoil that involves all the characters and subjects in his books.   In my own case, I hadnít been aware of the various Arab groups, including the Iranians, which are wary of each other. It certainly was an education.


Patterson is superb at placing complicated political and social issues within the context of fiction. He is one of my favorite writers and I believe you will adopt him as such if you were to read any one of his many books.