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In case of inclement weather, the Academy will follow school closing procedures for Talbot County. Listen for information on radio stations such as WCEI 96.7 FM, WSCL FM 89.5, or WTK 107.1 FM, TV stations such as WMAR, WBAL, WJZ, and WBOC, or contact the public schools website at Come to class only when it is safe for you to come and return. The Academy will endeavor to make up any class canceled due to inclement weather.

Winter 2015

President’s Letter

You are holding a passport to fun, adventure, history, art, poetry, life experiences, fiction and fascination. Our courses for the Winter session run the gamut: Living in the U.K. during WWII; hunting on Chesapeake Bay; American spirit reflected in American poetry; Lawrence of Arabia; digital photography; Scheherazade; learning Canasta; writing your memoirs; U.S. national security; Southwestern art; landscaping without lawns; book club; newspaper coverage of the War of 1812; dealing with ADHD; Delmarva railroads; and three presentations by acclaimed authors on their latest published works. So, take a moment to carefully read our Winter offerings, and participate in learning, sharing and enjoying these wonderful opportunities.
(You might even consider giving a future course in an area you love!)

Bob Lonergan

Multi-Session Courses

Is There An American Poetic Tradition?
With John Ford and John Miller
4 Sessions: Wednesdays, February 25, March 4, 11, 18 | 1:30-3:00pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

These are the Gardens of the Desert, these
The unborn fields, boundless and beautiful,
For which the speech of England has no name –
The Prairies, I behold them for the first,
And my heart swells, while the dilated sight
Takes in the encircling vastness.
William Cullen Bryant, “The Prairies,” (1833)

Alexis de Tocqueville suggested that the poetry of the new American democratic state, free from the staggering weight of centuries of European aristocracy and tradition, would focus “on man alone… his passions, his doubts, his rare prosperities and inconceivable wretchedness.” This course will focus on the many different traditions that make up “the expansive collage” of American poetry – from the 17th century poet Anne Bradstreet to the Transcendentalists, to the Imagists, the poets of the Harlem Renaissance, and many others.

In the first stanza of his poem “The Pasture,”
Robert Frost writes:
I’m going out to clean the pasture spring;
I’ll only stop to rake the leaves away
(And wait to watch the water clear, I may):
I sha’n’t be gone long. – You come too.

We “sha’n’t be gone long” on our exploration of the American poetic tradition. – You come too!
TEXT: The Columbia Anthology of American Poetry, edited by Jay Parini, Columbia University Press, ISBN# 0-231-08122-7 (available at
Note: Ford and Miller used the Parini anthology several years ago, so some of the participants in the class may still have it. While we will read some of the same poems (they are worth re-reading!), we will focus on those works we didn’t discuss.
Cost: $30

Hunting on the Bay with Phillip Hesser
4 Sessions: Tuesdays, March 3, 10, 17, 24 | 1:00-2:30pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

From well before the first contacts between the Indians and Europeans, the people of Chesapeake Bay have depended on hunting for subsistence and livelihood.
This course will look at the role of hunting on the Bay with a focus on how it has shaped life and livelihood and how hunting has contributed to the character of life on the Bay, influencing the wildlife, ownership, and use of the Chesapeake shores.
Topics include:
• Fowl & Fur – Hunting for Survival and Trade
• Gunners, Gadabouts & Groups – Hunting and its Role in Restaurants, Writing, & Resource Management
• Clubs, Cannon & Conservation – Hunting, Social Capital, & Government Acquisition
• (Internal) Combustion & Camps – Hunting in the Age of the Motor Vehicle and Metropolis
Cost: $30

Traditional Arts in the Southwest
With Rob Forloney
3 Sessions: Thursdays, February 19, 26, and March 5 | 10:30-Noon
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

The Southwest is widely recognized for its rich and unique art forms. A convergence of cultures, the indigenous peoples of the region developed traditions reflecting their beliefs centuries prior to the arrival of Spanish missionaries and settlers.
Kachinas (spirits or personifications of elemental powers) come to life during celebratory dances and in the carved cottonwood figures given to young girls. Fetishes designed with a variety of special materials were crafted for ceremonial purposes depicting important animals and icons. Perhaps best known is the wide variety of pottery motifs, each Pueblo using local materials to create its own distinctive style.
In the 16th and 17th centuries the areas that were to become Mexico and the American Southwest were part of an expanding Spanish empire. Long established practices in Europe served as the germination for vibrant and innovative forms of traditional folk expression. Though based on practices hundreds of years old, these art forms were transformed in to a unique aesthetic after arriving in the Americas. Located on the periphery of a new world, trained professionals were replaced by self-taught artists. We will also explore their work: ex votos – offerings left by the faithful on pilgrimages, retablos and bultos – devotional paintings and sculptures of patron saints, milagros – charms used for healing, as well as missions, Los Hermanos Penitentes and more.
We will examine both the historic origins of these works as well as their contemporary manifestations. Numerous images and examples from Rob’s personal collection will serve as the catalysts for our conversation.
Cost: $30

Everyone Has a Story Worth Telling
With Glory Aiken
6 Sessions: Mondays, January 26, February 2, 9, 23, March 2, 9 (No class February 16)
Location: Dorchester House, CBMM Campus
Enrollment Limited to 10; Sign Up Early!

This course will provide the memoir writer with the opportunity to begin, continue and ultimately complete their unique memoir. The bulk of class time will be devoted to reading the participant’s 1-2 page submission each week.
Whether you have lived an unconventional life or a relatively ordinary one, there’s bound to be something interesting to write about. A memoir may be your story, your family’s story or even just a story about a day, an event or a celebration. It may include and focus on research into your family’s history or it may be a collection of photographs that tell your story. Perhaps letters or journals will provide the basis for your story-telling.
Our goal will be the completion of your memoir in book form. A discussion of the many independent publishing opportunities now available to writers will also be included.
Cost: $30

National Security in the 21st Century
With Rich Wagner
5 Sessions: Mondays, March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 | 10:30-Noon
Location: Oxford Community Center, 200 Oxford Road, Oxford, MD

This course will address a broad range of topics related to the national security of the United States in the coming decades. Among the topics and questions addressed will be:
• Lessons learned from the challenges of the past century and differences between that era and the coming one. What is the relationship between U.S. security and the “world order”? Are there analytic ways of thinking about the future that can help us to deal with it more effectively?
• What is “strategy”? Does the U.S. have a national security strategy?
• The structure and workings of the U.S. national security enterprise, and how it relates to approaches to furthering
our national interest, such as energy security and the use of “soft power.”
• How the nature of warfare has changed over the past decades and may change in the future.
• The roles of science and technology in national security, and the relation between defense research and development and R&D in the civil/private sector.
• Nuclear weapons: How do they relate to national security, what have been approaches in the past to dealing with the dangers and benefits they pose, and what are prospects for the future?
• Is abolishing nuclear weapons possible or even desirable?
• Chemical, biological, and other WMDs (weapons of mass destruction).
Cost: $30

The Intrusives: Lawrence of Arabia, Gertrude Bell and the Arab Revolt of World War I
With Lynn Leonhardt Mielke
3 Sessions: Mondays, February 2, 9, and 16 | 1:30-2:30pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

For centuries, the Ottoman Empire controlled much of what we now call the Middle East. Known as the “sick man” of Europe, the Ottoman Empire was collapsing even before it joined the Central Powers (Germany and Austro-Hungary) in World War I.
In November, 1914, the Ottoman Empire attempted to incite an Arab revolt against the Entente powers (Britain, France, and Russia). The effort failed and Feisal, son of the Sharif of Mecca, began a nascent Arab revolt against the Ottomans in 1916.
T.E. Lawrence, a crusader castles scholar and archeologist, joined the British Army in 1914 and, stationed with the Arab Bureau in Cairo, devised and executed a guerilla movement, ultimately liberating the Arabs from the control of the Ottoman Empire.
Gertrude Bell, an archeologist in the desert area who met Lawrence in 1909, worked with the Arab Bureau in Cairo, Basra, and Baghdad as a “political officer.” While Lawrence master-minded the Arab Revolt, Bell blazed a route to nationhood for Mesopotamia (now Iraq).
In 1919, Lawrence, Feisal, and Bell battled against the Sykes-Picot Treaty which created French Syria and British Iraq and the Balfour Declaration which created a Jewish state in British-controlled Palestine, instead seeking self-determination for the Arabs.
Henry the Camel may make a guest appearance at one of
our sessions.
Cost: $30

Introductory Digital Photography
With Kate Mann
3 Sessions: Saturdays, January 17, 24, and February 14
(No classes on January 31 and February 7) | 10:30-Noon
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

Photographs are much more than just snapshots. When taken the right way, they become dramatic personal statements with the power to last forever. They can transport you to distant landscapes, capture fleeting emotions, recall cherished memories and reveal the beauty of life.
“Creating” images, rather than “taking” pictures is a form of personal expression and is more than simply pointing our cameras and clicking – it requires us to see what we are doing, being aware of light, our backgrounds, angles, made all much easier with today’s digital cameras where we can get instant feedback on the success of our efforts.
This 3-session introduction to digital photography will introduce participants to the fundamentals of shutter speed, ISO, aperture and depth of field to improve your ability to create beautiful images. We will discuss backgrounds and basic elements of composition, as well as some simple means to improve images after the picture is taken. Most of the emphasis will be on how to create the image “right out of the (camera) box.”
Participants should bring their digital camera, its instruction manual, and have a means to download their images via any simple program such as iphoto [Mac] or Picassa, programs that come with your camera, or more sophisticated programs like Lightroom.
We will be taking pictures, sometimes during class, sometimes between class sessions, reviewing standard pictures, the instructor’s images, each other’s images, with a focus on objects, landscapes, and people.
Cost: $30

Keeping Calm and Carrying On: Growing up in the United Kingdom during and after World War II
With Dorothy Parker
2 Sessions: Thursdays, February 12, 19 | 1:30-2:45pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

Childhood in he U.K. in the late 1930s and throughout the 1940s had its strange, dangerous, tragic, but sometimes hilarious moments. This program will provide a glimpse of what it was like for a young English girl dealing with the many ramifications of being at war and enduring its after-effects and with what it took to follow Churchill’s exhortation to “Keep calm and carry on.”
Cost: $20

The 1002,nd 1003,rd and Following Tales of Scheherazade
With Ron Lesher
3 Sessions: Tuesdays, February 10, 17, 24 | 2:00-3:00pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

WARNING: Logical thinking will be required in this course.
The story of Scheherazade is one of the great tales of world literature. We will begin with a discussion of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Thousand and Second Tale of Scheherazade (available for free on Google Books), an alternative ending to the classic tale. From there we will segue to the 1003rd Night and some logical puzzles originally posed by Raymond Smullyan.
The second and third sessions of this course will consist of presentations of logical puzzles, which each participant will be asked to solve in class (NO HOMEWORK!). After each puzzle, solutions will be presented (by you the participant). We will conclude with Smullyan’s alternative ending of the Tale of Scheherazade.
Cost: $30

Canasta Revisited
With Cynthia Pyron
4 Sessions: Wednesdays, March 4, 11, 18, 25 | 12:30-3:00pm
Location: The Church of the Holy Trinity, Parish Hall, 502
S. Morris St., Oxford
Enrollment Limited to 16; Sign Up Early!

Classic Canasta, popular in the 50s is making a huge comeback. Clubs all over are holding Canasta games. Many played this game as children and found it not only fun but a game for all ages and great for family groups. Class is open to those with or without experience. Class will cover the main objectives of the game and basic strategies, with time for practice games.
Participants are required to bring two identical decks of Canasta cards. Shufflers, card trays, and cards will be available for purchase at the first class meeting.
Cost: $30

Book Club
With Margot Miller
3 Sessions: Tuesdays, January 20, 27, February 3 | 1:00-3:00pm
Location: Talbot Senior Center Conference Room, 400 Brookletts Avenue, Easton, MD
Enrollment Limited to 20; Sign Up Early!

This term we will read Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being.
The first session (January 20) will be a review of Muriel Barbery’s The Elegance of the Hedgehog, because I think there is much to compare in this novel with Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being. It serves in a way as a context, or perhaps only as evidence that similar ideas are in the air around the globe at the same time.
The second and third sessions (January 27 and February 3) will be devoted to Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being, which was the first runner up for the Mann Booker prize in 2013.
Cost: FREE

Meet the Author
The Sheldon Goldgeier Lecture Series
In this A.L.L. program, authors from our community highlight their work and answer questions.
Bill Peak
Monday, February 23 | 1:00-2:30pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus
“The Oblate’s Confession”, the result of 20 years of effort, is Bill’s first published novel. England, the 7th century. Petty Anglo-Saxon kingdoms make war upon one another and their Celtic neighbors. Christianity is a new force in the land and power shifts uneasily between two forms of the new faith: a mystical Celtic Catholicism and a newer, more disciplined form of Catholicism emanating from Rome.
An Anglo-Saxon warrior donates his youngest child to the monastery of Redestone. This child, (an oblate) grows up in the abbey knowing little of his family.
To whom does he owe his allegiance? His natural father or his bishop who is his spiritual father? What decisions will he make when he is called upon to ally himself with one and destroy the other?
Known by many in Talbot County as “the Library Guy,” Bill’s articles from and about the Talbot County Free Public Library and its holdings have been a staple of the Easton Star Democrat for many years.

Ron Lesher (co-author)
Wednesday, February 4 | 10:30-Noon
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus
Stamps Tell Stories is a new publication of Smithsonian Scholarly Press (2014) and tells the story of the new Gross Gallery in the National Postal Museum (a part of the Smithsonian). Ron Lesher is one of the co-authors. Ron’s presentation will explore the changing character of U.S. postage stamp subjects from their origins in 1847 to the present.
Ron’s particular passion is for tax stamps, which cannot be used to mail a letter but which can be used to make contributions to the Internal Revenue Service. He has collected stamps since January 17, 1956, the 250th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin. Ron tells us that Franklin’s likeness does not appear on any current U.S. postage stamp, but it should!
Sue Ellen Thompson
Tuesday, March 17 | 10:30-Noon
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus
Sue Ellen Thompson’s fifth book of poetry, THEY, was published in September 2014.
Her work has been included in the Best American Poetry series and read on National Public Radio by Garrison Keillor. She has been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
Sue Ellen taught at Wesleyan University, Middlebury College, Binghamton University, and Central Connecticut State University before moving to the Eastern Shore of Maryland in 2006. She now mentors adult poets and teaches workshops at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda and Annapolis. Sue Ellen was awarded the 2010 Maryland Author Prize from the Maryland Library Association.
Cost: FREE

Single-Session Presentations

Lawn Gone: How to Create Attractive, Sustainable Landscaping for Your Property
With Julie Lowe
Tuesday, February 3 | 2:00-3:30pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

There are many ways to cover ground… from plants to mulch to stone.
We will explore ways to effectively and beautifully fill your open space with low-maintenance alternatives to turf grasses, thereby protecting our rivers and creeks and benefitting the next generation. We will also examine rain gardens and storm water management and, as always, we will pay attention to participants’ questions about gardening.
Cost: $10

How U.S. Newspapers Covered the War of 1812: A Retrospective View of the Second War of American Independence
With Steven Goldman
Thursday, January 22 | 10:30-Noon
Location: Oxford Community Center, 200 Oxford Road, Oxford, MD

The War of 1812 has a special significance to the Chesapeake Bay region of Maryland. The British Navy ravaged the entire Chesapeake and brought the war “home” to Maryland and Virginia between 1812 and 1815.
Early American conflicts such as the Colonial Wars, the French and Indian War, the Revolutionary War, and the undeclared Naval War with France for the most part lacked newspaper coverage and graphic images. That changed with the onset of the War of 1812 which many Americans thought of as the “Second War of Independence.”
This presentation will use images of rare early American newspapers to follow the radical changes in newspaper appearance and coverage during the War of 1812. It will document the emergence of early “headlines” and graphics by American newspapers and allow participants to see just how the technical, political, and economic changes during this time affected how newspapers looked before, during, and after the war.
Cost: $10

What Grandparents Need to Know about ADHD and Executive Functioning
With Jodi Sleeper-Triplett
Monday, March 2 | 1:30-3:30pm
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

Being a grandparent is supposed to be fun. You have the opportunity to enjoy your grandchildren without being in the “parental” role. When your grandchildren have ADHD and executive dysfunction, your fun times can turn sour, leading to frustration, anger and confusion for you and the entire family. This presentation will provide insight into ADHD and executive functioning and arm you with tools to help manage those challenging times of grandparenting.
Jodi Sleeper-Triplett, MCC, SCAC, BCC is the foremost expert on ADHD youth coaching. She is a trainer, coach, mentor, speaker, researcher and author of Empowering Youth With ADHD. Her company, JST Coaching, provides youth coach training programs worldwide. She resides in Alexandria, VA.
Cost: $10

The Railroads of Delmarva: A Retrospective
With Steve Spielman
Thursday, March 26 } 10:30-Noon
Location: Van Lennep Auditorium, CBMM Campus

The Delmarva peninsula is not normally an area that comes to mind when the subject is railroading. On closer study, however, the region has a surprisingly rich history of that mode of transportation.
From the east-west railroads that carried vacationers to the ocean resorts to the railcar float operations between Cape Charles and Norfolk, the Delmarva rail lines were a fascinating mix of heavy duty mainlines and bucolic branch lines. The equipment used was no less fascinating and the region often served as an isolated outpost for the oddball and antique.
This presentation will survey the topic with a lecture covering a brief history with an emphasis on the operations and types of equipment used. During the A.L.L. Spring Term, a field trip to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania and the Strasburg Railroad is tentatively planned to provide the opportunity to observe some preserved – and operating – examples of some of the equipment used.
Cost: $10


Glory Aiken worked in the pharmaceutical/biotech industry selling pediatric and adult vaccines. She retired from Pfizer as an account manager in Michigan after an eighteen year career. She discovered her love and enthusiasm for memoir writing in retirement and has self-published the rich and varied histories of her Italian, German and Irish extended family spanning a period of 145 years. This is her second course offering for A.L.L.
John Ford majored in Literature in college and is currently Facilities Manager at CBMM. John is President of the Easton Town Council. John has taught literature courses for CBMM-ALL for more years than he cares to remember.
Robert Forloney is an experienced educator and museum professional who has taught at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, American Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of Modern Art among others. He holds a BFA from Parsons School of Design, teaching certification from Bank Street College of Education, and a Masters in Humanities and Social Thought from New York University. Whether in an art institution or a history museum, he makes objects and images accessible through facilitating conversations as well as utilizing experiential learning techniques.
Dr. Stephen A. Goldman has, for the last 45 years, been a serious collector of historical newspapers, news broadsides, and newsbooks dated between 1559 and 2014. Steve’s private collection forms the basis of the News History Gallery at the Washington, D.C. Newseum, the largest museum of news and journalism history in the world. He is the author of three books utilizing historical newspaper front pages to develop historical themes.
Phillip Hesser, Ph.D., has taught in the U.S. and Africa and served with the UNHCR and AED. He can be found teaching at Salisbury University and Wor-Wic Community College; running the marshes with his retriever and hound; or working on What a River Says: Exploring the Blackwater River and Refuge, and Sitting in Limbo: Life and Livelihood on the Tumps of Chesapeake Bay.
Ron Lesher is a long-time fan of recreational mathematics, Edgar Allen Poe, Raymond Smullyan, and Hector Berlioz. What does Poe have to do with mathematics? Probably nothing, but he grafted another tale on the classic tale of Scheherazade, providing the frame for this course. What does Hector Berlioz have to do with mathematics? Nothing.
Julie Low, managing member of Sun Wild Gardens LLC, has 30 years of professional gardening experience on the Eastern Shore. Her background includes estate management; retail garden center management; and designing, installing, and maintaining residential and commercial gardens. Julie’s passion lies in garden design employing native plant material in combination with proven non-native ornamentals to create beautifully balanced, low-maintenance gardens with year-round interest.
Lynn Leonhart Mielke was born and raised on Long Island. She ventured to the Eastern Shore in 1968 to attend Washington College, graduating with a B.A. in American Studies. Lynn obtained a J.D. degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law and has practiced law in Easton for 35 years.
John Miller, Ph.D., is former adjunct professor of English at Carnegie-Mellon University and lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Pittsburgh. John received his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh and his B.A. from Yale University. Recently, John taught literature at Washington College, American University, and the Semester-at-Sea program. John is a long-time course leader for A.L.L.
Margot Miller holds a Ph.D. in French literature. She writes fiction as well as academic articles on contemporary women authors who write in French. And she paints. Her artwork can be seen at Occasional Art and at the Cottage Studio & Gallery in Easton.

Dorothy Parker grew up in England and after studying at the University of Liverpool and Strasbourg University, received an Honours Degree in French Language and Literature with a minor in Social Work. Immigrating to the U.S. in 1954, she has lived in Texas, Virginia, and Annapolis, MD. In 1997 Dorothy retired from the Anne Arundel Department of Aging where she worked as the Long Term Care Ombudsman, moving to the Eastern Shore with her husband.

William (Bill) Peak is communications manager at the Talbot County Free Library, and a member of the board of the Talbot County Arts Council. He received his baccalaureate degree from Washington & Lee University and his master’s from the writing program at Hollins University. His fiction and poetry have been published in The Delmarva Review and the Tidewater Times. Peak lives with his wife Melissa McLoud, a professional historian, in Easton and writes a library column for the local newspaper, The Star Democrat. Thanks to that column, he is better known around Talbot County as “the library guy.”
Cynthia Pyron played Canasta as a child with her brothers and currently teaches Canasta at Holy Trinity Church in Oxford. During her first career she won recognition for her innovative teaching techniques and conducted in-service training programs for several school districts in Texas. Later, as a Certified Property Manager (CPM), she managed high rise office buildings and strip shopping centers. She was the first woman to win the Manager of the Year Award in 1985 and in 1991 she organized the first “Light Up Ballston” in North Virginia as a community marketing plan. A few years later she lit up Rosslyn, VA. Sailboat cruising is her passion. She sailed “Wind Flirt” on the Chesapeake and to Martha’s Vineyard and back.
Steve Spielman has been a resident of Delmarva from the age of eight. Steve grew up in a neighborhood adjacent to the railroad branch that once served Easton. A rail fan from his earliest memories, he has collected information on the local railroad scene from published sources, observation and folklore. A graduate of the University of Maryland, he resides in Easton with his wife Melissa and daughter Emme.
Jodi Sleeper-Triplett, MCC, SCAC, BCC is the foremost expert on ADHD youth coaching. She is a trainer, coach, mentor, speaker, researcher and author of Empowering Youth With ADHD. Her company, JST Coaching, provides youth coach training programs worldwide. She resides in Alexandria, VA.
Dr. Rich Wagner is a physicist whose work has been in science, technology, and strategy related to nuclear weapons, missile defense, non-proliferation, countering nuclear terrorism, and information technology for defense and intelligence applications. He served as the Lawrence Livermore National Deputy Director and at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Between 1981 and 1986 he was Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Atomic Energy with responsibility for oversight of all Department of Defense activities related to nuclear weapons and chemical and biological defense programs. He has served on, or chaired, several senior advisory committees to the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security, the Intelligence Community, and NATO. In 1992 he was made Commandeur de l’Ordre National de Mèrite by the government of France, and is the 2012 recipient of the Eugene Fubini Award for career contributions in providing advice and guidance to the Department of Defense.