Posted by Sherry Ennis on Feb 09, 2019

Dear Members,

As winter has closed in around us, I’ve had thoughts, among others, on role models and invisibility. What, you say? I believe these thoughts have been brought about by my surprise at being the age I have become. Some days this is quite depressing, but then, I look around and am heartened.

On the subject of role models, grandmothers and mothers often come to mind; mine certainly do. My grandmother, unknowingly set me on the path toward what I would study in college and, ultimately my career; sadly, she never knew how she had shaped me. As for my mother, I am often amazed at how different we are (she’s the feisty one, and I’m the wimp), yet how crazy I am about her. I’ve always admired her energy, her outspokenness, how she as my father said on the occasion of their 50th anniversary, “lights up the room”. She’s the one who instead of just complaining about our small town school board, ran for a position and won. She’s the one that said that if she was going to fly in that small plane with Dad she better learn to fly in case he had a heart attack (why is it always a heart attack?). She’s the one who after they moved back to Spokane, made a career for herself at fifty. She’s the one who at 93, still always looks better than any of the rest of us. She’s always been busy, still lives in her home, plays bridge several times a week, goes to the investment club that she started, has season tickets to the Symphony and renewed her passport last week so she can go see the dinosaur exhibit at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Canada. Even though I was embarrassed by her every move when I was growing up, and still am occasionally, she’s a darn good role model because she has always had such a positive attitude, and she just did stuff.

Invisibility has been a big topic among women writers of late, and I’m assuming that is because the Baby Boomers have come, shall we say, of age. Men get off easy because, as I keep reading, they become more attractive as they age. I’m not sure who’s telling me this because I’m not necessarily seeing it, but that’s the way of it. Women, on the other hand, become “invisible” at around fifty. I heard a joke that women over fifty can shoplift and get away with it because they are invisible; so there’s a new career for some of us. A popular 50-year-old French author recently said publicly that he doesn’t see women over fifty, that they are invisible to him. He has rued that statement as the French women have gone after him tooth and nail. He says he wishes women would quit sending him those photos of their perfect over-50 “bottoms and breasts”! Women of fifty are starting to look like mere teenagers to me, so why shouldn’t they have great looking bottoms and breasts?

By now, you are probably wondering where I am going with this. Actually so am I, but I’ve spent some time on it so I guess it’s time to get to the point. Where I am going is this - everyday I see women who are amazing role models for me. Many of them are over fifty, and they are NOT invisible. Sandpoint is filled with them. CAL is filled with them. CAL is a veritable hotbed of extremely visible role models of every age. I look at women younger than I and am impressed by their talents; I look at those older than I and am awed by their wisdom, energy and love of life. When I look at all those women, I am heartened. We are visible. We are strong. We are valuable. As you stay tucked up and cozy in your homes today, spend a moment or two thinking about all the many ways in which you are wonderful and know that there’s a very good chance that you are someone’s role model.

P.S. I think a couple of my role models would have told me that I could NOT drive my Subaru through that drift at the end of my driveway! The digging out took care of my exercise for the day.

The CAL Board met on Wednesday, and there were a number of concerns aired around the table about Bizarre Bazaar. Our volunteers are what keep this very successful enterprise going, and each and every one of you is highly valued. However, let’s all be respectful of each other by making sure the store is tidy at the end of each shift. Please please, take out the trash, clean up the work stations, empty the coffee pot and clear the table in the clubhouse of food, crumbs, half empty water bottles, coffee cups, etc. I know that sometimes at 4 p.m., we just want to head out, so slow down and just take that one last look around.

Recently a number of items carrying tags marked NOT FOR SALE have been sold. They are marked that way for a reason; they are display items NOT sale items. In some cases, they have been purchased or contributed by department heads to use for display.

Please, everyone, let Diane and Cherie know what a wonderful job they are doing of managing our store! Let us not forget that they are volunteers, too!

Sherry Ennis