New Orleans Mensa

La Plume de NOM for August, 2012

The Magazine of New Orleans Mensa Information and Entertainment

From the Editor

Peter Salomon

August 5: Hall of Fame Game...Saints v. Cardinals

Brees is signed, training camp has begun...itís almost football season! Which, of course, means itís also Hurricane Season, so be prepared!

Also, one more month until the release of my novel, HENRY FRANKS! Itís Young Adult Horror, in time for Halloween...

So The Story Goes Like This

Bart Geraci

I was working in a large company out in West Texas and I ended up being in charge of several divisions. One day, my boss came up to me and told me that I needed to do something about some of the employees in the shipping division.

He explained that there were two people in the shipping division that seemed to be doing things much slower that normal. I checked the logs and sure enough, both Mary and Rose were working at a speed about twice as slow as the other employees. After a few more minutes, I was able to pull up their records and to my amazement found out two things. One, Mary and Rose were sisters. Two, Mary was the owners mother.

My boss then understood that they wouldn't be fired, but asked me to help them to work faster. I tried to contact their supervisor, but he was gone for the day.

So I made a note on my to-do list... parcel sage about Rose, Mary, and time.


Roger Durham

Iím having to write this quickly, as the deadline has come and gone and Iím still trying to catch up after nearly a week in Nevada. The Annual Gathering in Reno was surprisingly well-attended, with nearly 2,000 members and guests registered, and a good time was generally had by all, although the venue this year left something to be desired. The two hotels somehow couldnít find enough meeting space to accommodate us, so Hospitality was relegated to a free-standing building in the next block. Not the next block from the hotel, mind you, but the next block from the casino. Our hotel rooms were at least another block away, and two blocks for some of us.

At the meeting of the American Mensa Committee, we heard an update on our new marketing program, which includes a number of exciting developments, which youíll hear more about in the coming months. Several task forces were appointed to work on revisions of our national by-laws to address various perceived shortcomings in our organizational structure, and a new pricing methodology was adopted for Life Member dues, which will make Life Membership slightly less expensive for younger people, but slightly more costly for older folks. Notice was given that a general dues increase will be on the agenda at our September meeting.

The only other matter of substance that came up in the AMC meeting was the approval of a bid to hold the 2016 AG in San Diego. That will follow Fort Worth next year, Boston in 2014, and Louisville in 2015. Other than that, the AMC meeting dealt mostly with appointments. Bob Bevard of South Texas Mensa, our Development Officer, was reappointed, as was Greg Timmers, our Director of Science and Education, and Brian Reeves our Communications Officer. Rob Salkin was replaced as Membership Officer by Beth Anne Demeter. Jeff Dommenge of Lone Star Mensa was reappointed as Assistant RVC for our region. Several motions had been submitted for consideration at the Annual Business Meeting, but were withdrawn when their sponsor was unable to attend.

On a personal note, I have submitted my application to the national Nominating Committee to seek reelection as your Regional Vice Chairman, and your continued support will be much appreciated. I have also agreed to serve as Hospitality Chair for next yearís AG in Fort Worth, as the original Chair was forced to step down for personal reasons.

Thatís all for now. Donít forget Lone Star Mensaís upcoming RG in Round Rock, just north of Austin, over the Labor Day weekend, the North Texas RG in Dallas over Thanksgiving weekend, and the New Orleans RG the weekend after that.

Roger Durham


Bart Geraci

Well, I enjoyed a week in Reno at the Mensa Annual Gathering. The weather turned out to be bearable during the day, due to the low humidity, and quiet cool and refreshing at night. During that weekend, the area outside the hotel became the location of a Barbecue festival and a host of tribute bands. Anyway, many thanks to the people involved with putting on the AG.

This month, the monthly meeting will be held at Anne & Richard Garrett's house. It will also be a games night. While they have some games, they are encouraging people to bring games that they would like to play as well.

Some Mensa chapters do have a monthly games night. If enough people are interested and can share the hosting duties, we may do one as well.

Last month, we had the monthly meeting at Patti Armatis's house. She had hosted the April NOM Night, which was also the NOM annual book sale, for many years. It was nice to be able to use the house one last time and have one last book sale. I donated a big box of books, and I returned with 5 books. All in all, we raised $21.50 for the NOM treasury. Everyone there had a great time.

At the AG, it was announced that our CultureQuest team, ďBrains on BourbonĒ finished in 12th place earning $90 for our treasury. Our neighboring area, Baton Rouge Mensa, had a team that finished in 6th place. Congratulations to my teammates: Kevin Chestnut, Phil Wilking, Mack Spencer, and Anne Stringer.

If you wish to hold the monthly meeting at your house, then let me know. All hosts get $60 for providing food and beverages.

The Smart Set lunch group has ended, since Jennifer Bechet has moved out of the area. I enjoyed having lunch downtown (where I work) and I got to try a few new restaurants in the area. If you also work downtown, and want to continue the Smart Set lunch group, contact me and we'll see what we can do. Again, many thanks to Jennifer for holding this event.

Locally, August means several things:

Clearly, there's never a dull moment in this city.

Who dat!

Input From Young Mensans Needed

Our Gifted Childrenís Coordinator, Gerry Ward, wants to hear from young Mensans for some activities that they would be interested in. You can email her at

Help Us With NORGY 2012

For NORGY 2012, we are looking for many of our members to help. We are looking for someone to lead the hospitality committee and someone to be the Registrar. In addition, we welcome people to help us staff the hospitality room during the gathering. We are also looking for items that we can use to fill goodie bags with.


By Bart J Geraci on hiatus this month. Now is your chance to write an article for publication in La Plume de NOM!! Just email your article to the Editor at!

"Henry Franks" novel cover

By Peter Salomon

Henry Franks cover

Yes, that is the cover to my novel, now available for pre-order online. Just thought Iíd share in order to fill up the space.

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Last edited: 03-Aug-2012 . Webmaster Bart J. Geraci can be reached at