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– Have questions or trouble With Zoom? Click here to email the OLLI Zoom help desk.
– The next issue of OLLI E-News will be published Friday, July 17; regular deadline for submission of items is Tuesday, July 14, at 6:00.
The Computer Club (OLLI Personal Computer User Group, or OPCUG) will meet with its partner, the Potomac Area Technology and Computer Society (PATACS), on Saturday, July 18 via Zoom. Program activities begin at 1:00.
Password Managers: A Quick Tour and Why You Should Be Using One, presented by Ray Parker. Due to the constant pressure from security breaches and the growing need for us to transact business online, the awareness of password manager products has changed from “What’s a password manager?” to “Which password manager do you use?” However, even with that attention, there are still many questions to ask and answer regarding why you should be using one, and which one to use.
This session offers a quick tour through a short list of some popular password managers (individual products as well as browsers) to give you an idea of their relative strengths and explain how best to navigate the changing world of authentication. It also reviews related tools that can help you in your daily practice: modern (2020) password standards, and two-factor authentication (2FA).
Ray Parker has been engaged on the front lines with computers for 40 years and believes that information takes on greater value when shared with others.
Learn in 30: Customizing Your Smart Phone Voicemail Greeting Message, presented by John Krout. This presentation is a follow-up to last month’s presentation on configuring your smart phone to avoid robocalls. Your smart phone, just like your 1980s era landline answering machine, lets you record a greeting message; the phone system plays that message whenever an incoming call goes to voicemail. This presentation shows you how to create a custom smart phone greeting message including sound effects.
Attend via Zoom’s cloud meeting service, beginning at 12:45. Please click the following link to join the webinar: https://zoom.us/j/93730244342 or enter this Webinar ID from ‘Join’ in the Zoom app: 937 3024 4342.
OLLI Program Planning Group: Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) By Camille Hodges, HSS Program Plannnig Group Co-Chair
Yes, the Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) Program Planning Group covers a lot of topics! To be clear, the humanities are those academic disciplines that study human culture, like music, art, and literature. Social science disciplines are subjects like sociology, political science, human geography, law, and politics. We strive to offer programs that are relevant to present-day concerns.
You will find that some courses under HSS may seem to overlap with other planning groups’ courses. When this is the case, they are cross-referenced under another group and noted in the catalog as such.
Many of our classes include:
criminal justice systems and their effects on specific populations;
literature and its effect on society and culture.
We at OLLI are fortunate to have sources of academic expertise which include Mason and Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC) professors, community leaders, and members of OLLI. This includes YOU! If you are interested in presenting a topic to our OLLI members through the HSS committee, we would love to hear from you. Please contact either of the following people to share your single or multi-session course ideas:
In the event that you have already created a course suitable for OLLI, please follow the link below to the course proposal form and follow the instructions: course proposal form. Remember that OLLI courses will continue to use the Zoom format until further notice.
By Norma Jean Reck, Theater Lovers’ Group Coordinator
Although the coronavirus pandemic turned off the lights and shuttered theaters everywhere, it did not stop the creative instincts intrinsic to those who make theater possible. Take, for example, the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, Virginia. They have just announced their ‘Summer 2020 SafeStart Season’ that features both online and live performances.
Truly intrepid, they will be performing Twelfth Night and Othello in repertory during July and August for live audiences both under the chandeliers in The Blackfriars Playhouse and under the stars at the Blackburn Inn. Of course, face masks, social distancing, contactless tickets, and a few other adjustments have been made to accommodate our COVID-19 environment. Nonetheless, the shows do go on.
You get to choose your seat in the Playhouse, either first or second level for $33 to $60. At the Blackburn Inn, you can choose either a blanket space or a chair space for $40. For more information, times and dates of performances, and to purchase tickets, please go to www.americanshakespearecenter.com. You will also find other information on lodging, parking, restaurants, and places of interest. Staunton is a charming walking town not that far from the D.C. area with a lot to see, including a president’s library.
People are raving about the filmed version of Hamilton, which started streaming on Disney+ July 3. You can have the best seat in the house—your sofa—from which to watch it at your convenience as many times as you want. Go to www.disneyplus.com for information and to sign up. It costs $6.99 to join Disney+ for one month, and $69.99 for 12 months, if you are so inclined. The Hamilton film features Lin-Manuel Miranda and all the original stars in their principal roles.
In London, the National Theatre is preparing to offer its final set of shows free for streaming, beginning on a Thursday at 7:00 British Standard Time and streaming for one week. The Deep Blue Sea with Helen McCrory begins on July 9; Amadeus with Lucian Msamati as Antonio Salieri begins on July 16. Although the shows are free, they do ask for donations as resources are scarce during this lockdown. For information on the National Theatre and more, go to www.whatsonstage.com.
Feel free to share these theater tips with family, friends, neighbors who are not OLLI members, and others who do not live in our area.
Don’t forget to catch some of the CATFUNMUTED sessions on six new plays at the Contemporary American Theater Festival in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, on the next three Saturdays, July 11, 18, and 25 at 12:00 noon and 5:00. For more information and to register, go to www.catf.org or phone the box office at 304-876-3473.
Dear Editor,I hope that you had a great 4th of July. I wanted to point out that two of the “fun facts” in the July 3rd issue were incorrect, or at least badly misleading:
1. As the students in my recent OLLI class on the American flag can tell you, we have no idea how the stars were arranged on the first flag. It’s not even clear that there was a “first” flag as such. However, we do know that the stars-in-a-circle design was not typical during the Revolutionary War. Just about all contemporary images show the stars in rows or scattered randomly in the canton. The stars-in-a-circle is a trope that was mostly created by 19th-century artists.
2. The story about Benjamin Franklin favoring the turkey over the eagle is also mostly mythology. Neither Franklin nor Adams nor Jefferson had anything to do with selecting the eagle as part of the US Great Seal. Franklin’s supposed preference for the turkey is based on a letter that Ben wrote to his sister a year and a half after the seal was adopted. The wording of the letter itself makes it pretty clear that he was joking, which he was wont to do. Also, Franklin did not really have much admiration for turkeys—he deliberately electrocuted some as part of his physics experiments!
Note from the Editor: Thanks for your corrections! Sometimes myths seem to become realities.
Although Mason’s campus is shut down, online entertainment continues for us to access and enjoy. Dr. Linda Apple Monson produces a periodic “Notes from the Director.” This email is full of interesting online performances by the students and faculty of the School of Music. If you would like to receive these bulletins, just send an email to Brianna Schoen at email@example.com. Also, the Center for the Arts has a website Mason Arts at Home which has a calendar of on-line events.
Please note: Physical meetings for clubs and activities are canceled until further notice in accordance with Mason’s guidelines. OLLI is conducting its classes and activities online. Refer to the university’s coronavirus website for official university updates and check the OLLI Calendar for revised information.
The following list covering the next two weeks is extracted for your convenience from the master online calendar maintained by the office, with direct web links added when available. The list is accurate as of mid-week but for the most up-to-date information, please view the latest forecast of coming events on our website (News/OLLI Calendar). Note: All OLLI members are welcome at, and encouraged to attend (online), meetings of the Board of Directors, committees and resource groups, kick-off coffees, etc. (bolded below).
OLLI E-News was created by Rod Zumbro, who served as its editor from 2005 to 2013.
Chief Editor: Paul Van Hemel
Associate Editor: David Gundry
Weekly Editor Team: David Gundry, John Nash, Sheri Siesseger, Leslie Vandivere,
Paul Van Hemel Proofreaders: Rebecca Jann, Susan Van Hemel, Linda Randall, Tom Appich, Roz Stark,
Backup Chief Editor: Alice Slayton Clark
Submissions: Members are encouraged to submit letters to the editor, letters to Ms. Ollie Ettakit (on etiquette matters), OLLI-related news items, articles, and photos. Submit material to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline: Tuesday, 6:00, for that week’s issue (Monday, 6:00, for letters to the editor); early submissions are greatly appreciated. Please limit articles to about 250 words. Note: You can view past issues of OLLI E-News on the DocStore. To search the content of issues, use Search Our Site or put your search term in Google followed by “site:olli.gmu.edu/” without the quotes.