Happening in Kansas City
Trending around OUTvoices
The holidays are behind us, and we are into 2016! It is time to set some goals for the year.
This month, I interviewed Elizabeth Andersen. While preparing for the interview, I looked through her Facebook pictures and was inspired by her involvement in the Kansas City community. The woman is out there doing things, from arranging Tuesday Movie Nights at LIKEME Lighthouse to hosting the Sandra Moran Alphabet Soup Book Club-TTV on KKFI-FM (90.1) to getting out and exercising with the LGBT Frontrunners and Walkers group. Elizabeth has influenced me to jazz up my year!
1. You lived all over before you settled in Kansas City – Texas City, Texas; Fawley, England; Norman, Oklahoma; Wilbraham, Massachusetts; Western Pennsylvania; and Columbia, Mo., to name a few! How did you end up in Kansas City?
In 1980, my then-husband and I were teaching biology and English composition, respectively, at a university in Lawton, Oklahoma. We decided to move to Kansas City and teach there. He taught at Rockhurst for 32 years, and I was a lecturer, grants coordinator, and then director of the tutoring center. By the time our sons graduated from Rockhurst in 2007 and 2010, I was a longtime resident. I had planned on moving to the Pacific Northwest, but obviously never made it.
2. Now you live in Roeland Park. Passing the LGBT-inclusive ordinance was a struggle in Roeland Park. What do you think other communities can learn from that struggle when working to pass inclusive legislation?
The support of so many groups and people was key: Equality Kansas, PFLAG-KC, ACLU, several councilpeople, as well as Roeland Park business owners and residents. As a 22-year homeowner, I spoke in front of the council, as did my sons. Even though the opponents were organized and used scare tactics such as transgender “toilet terror,” they were met with logic and facts. Equality Kansas chair Sandra Meade was especially effective at refuting them, and Michael Poppa of Equality Kansas has since been elected to the council.
3. You are the host of the Sandra Moran Alphabet Soup Radio Book Club-TTV on KKFI, 90.1 FM, which is in memory of your friend Sandra Moran, who passed away in November. Could you tell me how that came about?
When Sandra asked me to host, I agreed and realized the book club was one of the greatest gifts I have ever received. We had talked often about literature and about our belief that well-written LGBTQ books should be showcased and discussed. Because she left a template through next June, I have a good sense of the kinds of books she wanted to feature. Sandra said all she ever wanted was to be kind and good and to make a difference. She was, she did, and she left us a literary legacy to preserve.
4. What will be the next book discussed on the program?
We’ll talk about Jam on the Vine by LaShonda Barnett in honor of Black History Month. The panelists will be poet Annette Billings; Stuart Hinds, curator of the Gay & Lesbian Archive of Mid-America; and Mercedes Lewis, board member of the Golden Crown Literary Society.
5. How did you become involved with LIKEME Lighthouse?
In January 2011 at a PFLAG meeting, a woman spoke of her niece who had come out and written a book. When Char Daniels said the name, I was astonished because I’d been following Chely [Wright>’s story. I attended the first meeting that May and became more active over time. For the past three years, I served on the board and hosted weekly films. I’ll continue to help with social media and special events. One favorite memory was from the Chili Cook-off a year ago. Two twentysomethings decided to have an impromptu drag dance-off in the lobby and asked several of us to judge (it was a tie). The LIKEME Lighthouse has provided a lot of laughter and meaning in my life.
6. How else are you involved?
I’ve screened films for the production team of our LGBT film festival for 15 years. Working with Jamie Rich, I am convinced that he can solve any problem, no matter how bizarre or serious. We have had so many laughs, watched so many great (and bad) films, and collected so many memories that I can’t imagine a June without the festival.
7. I understand that you are really interested in Women’s Music Festivals. Could you tell me about that?
I’ve been a stage house manager since 2010 at the National Women’s Music Festival in Madison, Wisconsin. Linda Wilson, the president of the board and producer, talked me into it, thank goodness. And my Big Bad Gina friends let me house-manage at the Amazon Women’s Music Festival in Fayetteville, Ark. Impromptu jam sessions, chats with brilliant singer-songwriters, laughs with comedians – what’s not to love? Between films, music, and books, I stay busy.
8. As if you’re not busy enough, you’re involved in the LGBT Frontrunners and Walkers group. This looks like a great group for those of us who would like to get out and be active in the new year. Is this a competitive running group, or are they a group that likes to get out and exercise together?
Some members run competitively, but for the most part, it’s an exercise group of friends, almost all gay men (who are all about the brunch or supper afterward). I have attended intermittently since 1996 because they are so welcoming. When I walk up, inevitably I see a young man thinking “she’s obviously lost.” And then one or more of the guys will greet me like a long-lost relative. What amuses me is at the beginning when we discuss upcoming activities for gay men. “Elizabeth?” Because of radio and the Lighthouse, I often know.
9. You also have two sons. What is your favorite activity to do with them?
Odd as it sounds, we have the most fun in the car riffing on ideas and doing voices and songs. We’ve had cross-country road trips, one of which was very like National Lampoon’s Vacation. It ended with a moose almost killing us, $3,800 worth of car repairs, and then our Les-baru Forester being totaled in Saskatchewan and a 50-hour bus ride home. They also volunteer with me in the LGBT community whenever I ask.
10. I like to end with something fun. If you could be a character in a book, who would you be?
Thanks for stumping me on the last one. I have favorite authors such as Virginia Woolf and Dorothy Allison, but wouldn’t want to be Mrs. Dalloway or Bone. I understand to some degree the skepticism of the central character in Sandra Moran’s Nudge. Sandra and I met to discuss working together at the Lighthouse, on radio, and informally in literature. She initially confounded me because I hadn’t met a lesbian like her. Fourteen years ago I was a senior editor at a publishing company (on the newspaper syndicate side), and working with Sandra brought that previous life back to me. So in that one respect – of experiencing my brain recalibrating – I identify with Sarah Sheppard. But the person most like that character in terms of being The Nudge was and is Sandra."
After the last 2 years of dealing with the pandemic and packing on those COVID pounds here are some motivational quotes that can be the spark plugs to our wellness engines. You can have a full tank of gas, a clean carburetor, all the fluids topped off, and 300 horsepower of Detroit’s finest under the hood, but you’re going nowhere without that initial spark. In your quest for well-being, you need a catalyst to move you from idle to ideal. Here are some motivational jolts to inspire you to get your health and fitness vehicle moving.
Make time for exercise each dayPhoto by Victor Freitas on Unsplash
Thomas Paine said, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” You will have conflicts with making time for exercise each day. The treadmill will conflict with your enjoyment of the living-room couch and its fluffy pillows. Your body will engage in conflict with dumbbells and exercise balls as it seeks better health. Embrace these conflicts with excitement, and walk through the smoke and fire. Triumph is waiting on the other side.
Marathon runnersPhoto by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash
John F. Kennedy said, “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” The firefighter’s 55-pound weight loss did not just happen one day on a call. The computer programmer’s success in the Chicago Marathon did not just happen on a Sunday in October. The 4th grade teacher’s significant drop in cholesterol level did not just happen the day before spring break. These people made things happen…and it took time.
Ralph Marston of The Daily Motivator website, wrote, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” Let today be the first day in 28 years without a cigarette. Stay an extra five minutes on the recumbent bike at the gym today. Start training today for the three-day breast cancer walk that is scheduled for the fall. Tomorrow is always waiting to see what you put in your piggy bank today. Invest wisely and watch the dividends grow.
Full MoonPhoto by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
Jill McLemore once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land amongst the stars.” Set that goal to trim 75 pounds from your body. Only losing 42 pounds puts you way out there with the North Star. Aim to run 750 miles this year. Coming up 68 miles short will still put you past that former planet Pluto and on your way to the Orion constellation. Dropping eight waist sizes by Christmas instead of the projected 10 will let you glow with the luminescence of several brilliant wonders in the sky. By the way, I think there’s a full moon tonight!
Zig Ziglar stated, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Tom Cruise was another aspiring pretty face in Hollywood about 30 years ago before starting to audition for parts in TV shows. Jared Fogle was a morbidly obese college student at Indiana University in the 1990s before beginning his Subway diet. Mark Zuckerberg was just another starry-eyed Ivy Leaguer until he began to implement a social network idea. They all have that common bond: They started something.
These motivational quotes should help get your wellness engine running and once your car is started there’s no telling where your health and fitness can go. Don't forget to end me a postcard when you get there!
This health and fitness article is brought to you by that guy who’s sneaky like a black hole and bright like a nebula. My name is Ron Blake and I can be found playing with my telescope at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Curative has announced that it is currently providing COVID-19 no-cost testing in your area at Metropolitan Community College.
Stay safe and get tested!
You can schedule COVID-19 Test at curative.com, and receive results in 24-48 hours.
Curative is the leading provider of COVID-19 testing in the United States. Curative’s mission is to end the COVID-19 pandemic by providing simple-to-use and painless testing at scale to produce reliable data for patients and health officials. We know that broad access to testing, robust contact tracing, and a vaccine are necessary to end the pandemic.
Is there any cost?
Regarding the tests, there is no out of pocket cost to the individual. Through the CARES act, all individuals with health insurance will be covered for a COVID-19 test. No one is ever charged a copay or deductible.
For uninsured individuals, they are covered under the HRSA fund under the CARES act. Curative will never send a bill to any individual getting a COVID-19 test through any of our testing sites.
How soon do I get the results?
Curative provides results within 24 hours of arrival at our lab (if not sooner). We pride ourselves on our ability to distribute tests rapidly, test patients easily, and send them their results quickly. Other highlights include:
· Non-invasive cheek swab (video) that is more accurate (~90%) than a nasopharyngeal test (~80%)
· Can be self-collected under supervision by lightly-trained individuals (so no onsite medical professional required)
· Results within 24 hours of receipt at our lab
· Lab capacity to process tens of thousands of additional tests
· Manufacturing capacity to meet any order size
· Minimal PPE requirement due to the test’s self-collected method
Please visit curative.com to schedule your no-cost appointment TODAY at a site nearest to you. Together we can end this pandemic!
Curative believes that communal well-being is fundamental to individual health.
Curative is building infrastructure to make essential health services easier to access for everyone. Their infrastructure is designed to change as the world does—offering nearby access, affordable services, and science-based guidance.
Their efforts are supported by the optimism and ambition we share with communities across the US, and together we’re imagining new ways to help more people stay safe, healthy, and informed wherever they are.
“I wish I could work out, too, but I just don’t have the motivation!”
Give me a dollar for every time I’ve heard that and I’d be in Cabo San Lucas with an umbrella drink right now. Let’s identify a few of your motivations to get you on the right path. They are there … you just need to realize them so you can make it a great 2022.
How about getting healthy so you can be at that Christmas celebration in 30 years with all the family gathered around and exchanging presents? There will be nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, children and maybe some grandchildren, all enjoying the sounds and sights of the season. That would be amazing!
How about being healthy so you can watch the first man land on Mars in 2030? You hear all the talk about preparing for a mission to Mars, but it will be a long time in coming. Just think if you were alive and well to see it happen!
How about being healthy so you can attend that 60-year class reunion? It might even be nice to walk into the function with a spring in your step and a glow of health about you! Many of your classmates will have walked past St. Peter and those pearly gates by that time, but you can give yourself a chance to stay here with some proactive measures.
How about being healthy so you can spend more time being relaxed and retired? It would be awesome to just not have to do anything you didn’t want to do! Get up every day and use that watch they gave you as a fashion accessory only. With a healthy body, you can spend ample time in the lap of leisure well into your 90s.
How about being healthy so you can walk your dog with your grandkids or great-nephews after that Thanksgiving meal many years down the road? It will be so cool to have that turkey dinner with all the relatives, but it’ll be even more fun to be able to move around without having to catch your breath between steps.
How about being healthy so you can continue to enjoy vibrant sunsets, thrilling football games, colorful leaves in the fall, summer barbecues, or birthday cards in the mail?
Everyone can find the motivation to work out! You just have to identify which motivation will get you to your starting line each day and which will help you get to your daily finish line.
There are plenty of great things to enjoy in life. Find your motivation and start earning your frequent flyer miles for your healthy life. Then soar into the future with excitement about what will be!
This article of motivation is brought to you by a guy who knows a good thing when he sees it. That guy of good vision is Ron Blake, and he can be spotted on that bright horizon at email@example.com.