TMC Administration Notes - October/November 2014

Letter from the Chair

Ferguson. ISIS. Ebola. These are the scary and disturbing stories of the moment. But our world never seems short of the kind of news that leaves you wondering about man's inhumanity to man, or just wondering what has happened to the planet. It is easy to become stressed about doom-laden news, and for many men, these worries come on top of more day-to-day worries like: "Will I be able to support my family?" "Can I stay sober?" "Can I live up to my potential?" "Can I live a meaningful and fulfilling life as a man even if I don't conform to society's norm for what it means to be a man?" All of this can feel overwhelming, so my advice for dealing with it might sound a little odd: Take care of yourself.

A friend and TCMC support group facilitator has an analogy for dealing with difficult times that I like. It has to do with the safety speech that flight attendants give before every commercial airline flight. In particular, it's the part that covers what to do in the event of a "loss of cabin pressure." They always tell you to put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting others like children or the elderly. Why? The logic is simple: If someone else depends on you to help them with their mask, you won't do them much good if you've passed out from hypoxia. Much better to take care of yourself first to make sure you are able to then help those who need your help.

If you are concerned about the state of the world, or if you worry about coping with difficult problems, how does the oxygen mask analogy apply to you? Quite simply, being stressed out or paralyzed with worry prevents you from helping others, and it especially prevents you from helping yourself. Putting on your oxygen mask first means taking care of and being kind to yourself before trying to deal with your problems or taking care of others.

Taking care of your self can mean many things. It could mean a short distraction from your worries, or it could mean doing extended work to get healthier, either physically or emotionally. The point is that it's hard to accomplish worthy goals or do much of anything when you are stressed, preoccupied, or just plain unhappy. Taking care of yourself means making sure all of your basic needs are met, including food, health, rest, exercise, and recreation. Taking care of yourself doesn't solve your problems by itself, but it gives you a firm foundation upon which to solve your problems.

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. 

You do not need a password to access this new catalog.  The new catalog is in a white 3 ring binder.  Our entire collection of books is sorted 3 different ways; by Author, Category and Title.

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, Steve Magner
Librarian -- Jim Heaney
Donation Pick-up Volunteers --
See chart in kitchen area

Board Chair -- Joe Szurszewski
Board Vice Chair -- Tom Weaver
Board Secretary -- Norm Petrik
Board Treasurer -- Rick Charlson
Board Member -- Jim Heaney
Board Member -- Ken Knoll
Board Member -- Andy Mickel
Board Member -- Damon Starks
Alternate -- Harry Greenberg
Alternate -- Dan Gorbunow
Alternate -- Malik Holt
Alternate -- Dave Webb

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

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

Wednesday Present Publicity -- Rick Charlson

Finance Committee, Chair -- Rick Charlson
Finance Committee Chair -- Rick Charlson
Fin Comm Grant Writer -- Malik Holt-Shabazz
Fin Comm Memberships -- Andy Mickel

Outreach Committee, Chair -- Rick Charlson
Pride Festival Coord -- Ken Knoll
Media Publicity Coord -- Rick Charlson
Outreach Booth at Shows -- Randy Genrich, Andy Mickel, Malik Holt-Shabazz
Librarian -- Jim Heaney
Web Site/Technology -- Bill Dobbs, Andy Mickel, Ken Knoll, 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 -- Dave Webb
General Men's Issues -- Randy G, Jerry O
Addiction Busters -- Tommy J
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, Tom J
Healthy Sexual Boundaries East -- Bobby S
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.