TMC Administration Notes - February / March 2016

Letter from the Chair

As I write this, the nation is gripped with Powerball fever. $1.5 billion is up for grabs and anyone who's bought a ticket (or 20) will tell you about the extravagant purchases they plan to make if they wind up holding a winning ticket. Why? The subtext of this dreaming always seems to be that buying an elaborate mansion or a fleet of Italian super cars will make the winner truly happy.

Leaving aside the fact that you are more likely to win an Olympic Gold Medal, be elected President of the United States, or be canonized as a saint in the Catholic Church, there are a couple of problems with believing that winning the lottery will make you happy. First, happiness is not a state of enhanced being that is simply bestowed upon the lucky or the deserving. It is more like the period of semi-euphoric relaxation that comes after an intense workout. This isn't to say that happiness requires hard work, but it does require intentionality - you have to at least want to be happy and willing to do something to achieve it. I think this is something a lot of us have trouble with. We are often subtly taught that happiness is a reward for being a good person or for living our lives in a certain way, whereas I believe happiness is simply a choice that we make. If we want to be happy we can be if we do something to get there. Ultimately, I think this boils down to the difference between people who feel like life happens to them and people who actively shape their life into what they want it to be.

The second problem with the lottery-happiness theory is that it supposes that happiness is externally based. Aside from the fact that this model means you give up control of your own happiness, this just doesn't make sense. Your happiness is a state of being that originates inside of you. External things and events are input of course, but the fabric of your happiness is woven entirely inside your head. Given this, if you're not happy doesn't it make sense that the first place to look for a solution is inside yourself?

Of course saying all of this is one thing and being able to put it into action is another, so that is where I'd like to suggest that TCMC can help. If you are a man who is unhappy with some aspect of your life, our classes and support groups can help you to help yourself. You will receive support and encouragement to grow and make changes that will help you move toward the life and happiness you want.

By all means buy a lottery ticket the next time you want to indulge in a little fantasy. But please don't imagine that winning means you would be transported to a magical land of perpetual happiness for the rest of your life. True happiness is achieved, not won.

Joe Szurszewski
Board Chair


Library Corner

–– Jim Heaney, Librarian

We have a unique and extensive collection of books on men's and general topics which can be checked out by members of the Men's Center. Our periodicals include:

  • Fathering Today
  • Men's Health
  • Men's Journal
  • Lavender
  • Transitions
  • Voice Male.

The books in the Men’s Center Library are sectioned off into 14 categories.  These categories are: Fathers, Children & Families, Fiction, Gay & Lesbian, Health & Therapy, Humor, Men’s Movement & Masculinity, Men’s Stories & Poetry, Miscellaneous, Relationships & Friendships, Reference, Relationships & Friendships, Sexuality, Spirituality, Valued Elders, Women. 

The Men's Center is proud to have a signed copy of Timothy Young's recently published To the Palace of Kings. Timothy is very active in the men's movement. This is the book which was referenced in Men Talk.

The Men's Center Staff and Key Volunteers

Office Manager -- Randy Genrich
Office Assistant Mgr-- Bryon Wistrom
Anger Mgmt Director-- John Hesch
Office Volunteers -- Rick Charlson, Jim Heaney, Dick Madigan
Librarian -- Jim Heaney
Bakery Donation Pick-up --
See chart in kitchen area

Board Chair -- Joe Szurszewski
Board Vice Chair -- Tom Weaver
Board Secretary -- Norm Petrik
Board Treasurer -- Rick Charlson
Board Member -- Harry Greenberg
Board Member -- Andy Mickel
Board Member -- Damon Starks
Board Member -- Open
Alternate -- Dan Gorgonow

Alternate -- Malik Holt
Alternate -- Jim Heaney
Alternate -- Jamie Wellik

MenTalk Editor -- Bill Dobbs
MenTalk Production -- Bill Dobbs
MenTalk Here/There -- Andy Mickel
MenTalk Advertising -- Bill Dobbs
MenTalk Coord/Database -- Scott Benson
MenTalk Mailing -- Scott Benson, Jerry O,

Program Committee, Chair -- Norm Petrik
Wednesday Present Coord --Randy Genrich

Wednesday Present Publicity -- Rick Charlson

Finance Committee, Chair -- Rick Charlson
Finance Committee Chair -- Rick Charlson
Fin Comm Grant Writer -- Damon Starks
Fin Comm Memberships -- Andy Mickel

Outreach Committee, Chair -- Jim Heaney
Pride Festival Coord -- Damon Starks and Tom Weaver
Media Publicity Coord -- Rick Charlson
Outreach Booth at Locations -- Jim Heaney, Malik Holt
Librarian -- Jim Heaney
Web Site/Technology -- Bill Dobbs, Andy Mickel, Joe Szurszewski
E-mail Responders -- Scott Benson, Rick Charlson, Bill Dobbs, John Hesch, Andy Mickel, Joe Szurszewski

Anger Mgmt Director -- John Hesch
Anger Mgmt Grant Writer -- Bob Anderson
Anger Mgmt Publicity -- John Hesch
Anger Mgmt Steer Commit -- Bob Lundberg, John Hersch, David Giancristforo
Anger Mgmt Facilitators -- Tom M, Michael K, Jim K, John H, Art H, Bryce K, Pat G, Dean G, David E, Hoske R, Cory C, Michael I, John C, Lee C, Norm P, Bob L, Bob A, Harry G, Howard B, Tom F

Support Group Coord -- Norm Petrik
Support Group Database -- Open
General Men's Issues -- Randy G, Jerry O
Gay Issues -- Pat K, Bruce K, Ranslow Z
Transitions --Scott, Richard S.
Divorce/Uncouplng -- John M, Greg D, Gerry W
Sexual Trauma & Abuse Survivors -- Jerry B, Kathleen M
Bi-Men & Gay Issues -- Leo P, David W, Damon S.
Healthy Sexual Boundaries -- Bobby S, Tommy J
Healthy Sexual Boundaries East -- Bobby S
Healthy Sexual Boundaries Tues -- Rich P, Bobby S, Tommy J
Mankind Project Open Circle -- Tim K
Retirement -- Norm P

Call our Office Manager at 612-822-5892 and ask how you can help.
We have been a vital part of the Twin Cities community for decades,
and almost all of our services have been provided by volunteers like you.