American Mensa is the high IQ society I founded in 1960. When the editor of the Mensa Bulletin asked for contributions, I got busy and sent him some. You may find some of interest.
#1. Why Mensa?
There's little benefit in having a better than average brain if you don't use it. Alas, little we get on TV causes much brain strain. After all, TV fare is aimed at the lowest common denominator, and that's really low. How much more exciting to get together with others for some actual brain exercise!
Millions of books have been published, of which maybe 0.01% will give you information that's going to be useful. Hey, what's the benefit of having all that computing power if you don't have data to work with? Reliable data. So one benefit a Mensa group can provide is a discussion of the best books the members have discovered. Also, these should be reviewed in the group's newsletter.
When I became the New Hampshire Local Secretary, I made sure that we had outstanding speakers at our monthly dinner meetings, plus I published OzyMandius, a monthly Mensa literary journal. We usually had thirty to forty members at the meetings, not bad for forty years ago. And the after dinner discussions often went past midnight. Some restaurants gave us the keys to lock up after the staff all went home.
How many of you have read the books by Chris Bird, Rupert Sheldrake, and Dean Radin? These are enormously important authors which you're not going to hear about on Oprah. Are you familiar with the work of Drs. Lorraine Day, Bruno Comby, and Henry Bieler? How about Weston Price and Melvin Page? These giants can change your life, once you get acquainted with their books.
Mensa groups often organize outings. I'll never forget one where we rented canoes and paddled down the Contoocook river all day, stopping off at an island for a picnic lunch and a swim. At the end of the day the canoe company picked us and our canoes up with a van and took us back to our cars. It was a day that no one who experienced it will ever forget.
And having memorable experiences is an important part of living. For me it was so important that I'm publishing a magazine on the fun things we have to do in New Hampshire…and there are enough to fill a magazine twelve issues a year and then some.
Another event I organized was a brainstorming session of our New Hampshire Mensa group, and it worked out fantastically. What's the benefit of getting a bunch of brains together if you don't use them to help solve problems? So I got Senator Humphrey to join the group and pose a problem.
He explained that every government department or agency has a yearly budget, and that during the last few weeks of the fiscal year they made sure their budget was totally spent. This made it so they could legitimately ask for a bigger budget for the next year, making it so government agencies would continue to grow and cost more money.
I knew from personal experience how valid this was. At one time I started a chain of computer stores. It grew and grew, ending with a chain of 58 stores all around the country. But my Beltway store did more business in the two weeks before the end of the government's fiscal year than in the rest of the year combined.
If you've read C. Northcote Parkinson's Parkinson's Law you know how well he documented this phenomenon. Like the British department that dealt with the Boer War victims which started with a couple dozen employees handling several thousand war victims. When Parkinson investigated they had thousands of employees handling a couple dozen surviving victims.
I'm reminded of the book because I found a copy at the Hancock town dump a few days ago.
New Hampshire Mensa did a group-think and came up with a great solution for the Senator. They proposed that each department or agency, at the end of the fiscal year, would split anything left over in their budget among the employees. Any dollars wasted would thus come out of the pockets of the employees, so you can bet that any leaving or expendable employees wouldn't be replaced and expenses would be cut to the bone.
The next year's budget would be the amount actually spent the year before. Thus the department would gradually slim down…and become more efficient. The Senator estimated that it would take about three years to pare any department in half, saving hundreds of billions of dollars.
I was going to say saving taxpayers money, but knowing how Congress works, any additional money would be quickly thrown into funding new departments or into pork projects.
Hmm, could the same idea be used on Congress? If they could split any money not spent over last year's budget among themselves they'd get enormously rich, and it would be the best bargain we ever made.
I'd like to see Mensa groups get together to brainstorm strategies for businesses and government. We've got the brains, so let's put them to good use? Make sense?
If any group is interested in some books worth reviewing, check out my Secret Guide to Wisdom., which is a review of about a hundred books you're crazy if you don't read. I talk about them on talk radio and in my published essays (over 10,000 essays published so far). You can find out more about me and my stuff at www.waynegreen.com.
Check out your local Mensa group for interesting meetings, intellectual companionship, and group activities. Your mind is a use it or lose it proposition, so give it lots of exercise. I'm 87 and still going strong, whipping through a couple crossword puzzles a day. Tough ones. I'm busy on talk radio, writing books, and publishing magazines.
#2. The Secret to Health
Hippocrates, 2500 years ago, gave us the secret to health. He said, “Food is your best medicine.” Well, yes, but if he were around today he'd be appalled at the junk we're eating…and not be one bit surprised at the way it's making us sick. Our Department of Health has estimated that 1.5% of us are really healthy.
I don't have to trot out the statistics on how many Americans are fat, and how many are grossly obese. You can see that for yourself. It's pathetic!
So what's the answer? Actually it's both very simple, and difficult to adopt. We're creatures of habit and our ruts run deep.
My awakening started when I read Maximize Immunity by Dr. Bruno Comby of Comby Institute in Paris. He noticed that in every research project with dogs and cats, when they were fed cooked food instead of raw meat they only lived half to two-thirds as long and got human ailments. Not being overly stupid, Dr. Comby started putting his patients on raw food diets and the results were miraculous! They were quickly curing themselves of cancer, AIDS, and any other illnesses they had.
It didn't hurt when I heard Dr. Lorraine Day, a well-known San Francisco trauma surgeon, on talk radio telling about her experience. She got a breast cancer and, being a doctor, she knew that the usual chemotherapy or radiation treatment hadn't been extending lives one day. Her tumor grew as big as a grapefruit and the cancer spread all through her body, She was given days to live when she adopted a raw food diet, with juicing and twenty glasses of pure water a day. She totally cured herself in a few weeks. You can get her Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Any More video from 800-574-2437. Say hello from Wayne. Check out www.drday.com.
Dr. Day was the Chief of Orthopedic Surgery at San Francisco General Hospital and is recognized world-wide as and AIDS expert. As a result of her work with a raw food diet she now says, “There are no incurable illnesses.”
How does all this curing come about? How's it work? It's fairly simple. You see, our bodies are enormously complex mechanisms, with all sorts of things that can go wrong. But, we have an amazing repair system built in: our immune system. When allowed to do its work it can repair almost anything. It can kill off invading microbes, viruses, parasites, fungi, and yeast infections. It can repair damaged skin and broken bones.
I said it can do this when allowed to. Unfortunately, we dump all kinds of poisons into our bodies and these keep the immune system so busy it's unable to do the more routine chores. Like get rid of cancers.
Our cells are busy replicating themselves and every now and then a mistake is made and a wild cell gets loose. It's the immune system's job to find these errors and trash them before they cause trouble. But, if our immune system is busy fighting a steady deluge of poisons, we get a cancer of something. And, the way things are going, half of us are going to get some kind of cancer unless we wise up.
Okay, so what are the poisons? Well, there's a bunch, but the worst offender is cooked food. Yep, that's right, cooked food. There was a great series of articles in Nexus magazine on the subject. It seems that when we heat food it kills the vitamins and the enzymes our bodies need to digest the food. So, when we eat it, the immune system sees it as poison and rushes out the white cells to fight it. And down goes the immune system for a while. Three meals of cooked food a day (or more) and your immune system is kept busy 24/7/365 just dealing with this barrage of poison. And gee, half of us get cancer. We also get colds, flu, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and so on.
The other common poisons are refined sugar, pasteurized milk, most beef, caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, mercury, fluoride, chlorine, drugs, vaccinations, and so on. We're sure doing a job on ourselves.
Every other mammal lives between ten and seventeen times their age at puberty. We should be living 120 to 200 years, and I'll bet we could if we'd kearn to stop poisoning ourselves.
I've researched each of these common poisons and put the whole works into my Secret Guide to Health, along with the back-up references. I got a call from Dr. Day saying she'd read my book and it was “right on the money.”
For instance, mercury is a very destructive poison. We get some from eating fish, but the really large doses come from dental amalgam and vaccinations. It's causing a huge rise in Alzheimer's disease.
Until we're able to get our commercial farms to remineralize their soils, mainly using rock dust, we're going to have to take mineral supplements. Plants grown in remineralized soil are healthier and don't attract pests. They're scavengers and are only attracted to sick plants. So it's much easier to grow organic produce when the plants are healthy. Plus they taste better and last longer after being picked.
Well, there's a lot more to this story. My main message is simple…if you'd like to reverse any illness you have and never get sick again, change to a raw food diet. I have, And yes, that includes meat! And I'll bet I can out ski any of you this winter, even though I'm 87 and a WWII veteran.
If you've read much of American history, other than the history-lite you get in school, you have an understanding of how thoroughly the oil interests are in control of the Administration and Congress. Money talks, and we're talking trillions here.
So, what's an alternative? We've been hearing about some new and cheaper solar cells. Then there are barrages of huge windmills being set up offshore in Ireland and a few other places. We're reading about hydrogen-powered cars. We have some scientists talking about zero-point energy. There's also cold fusion.
As Schopenhauer pointed out, each new truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. And third, it is accepted as self-evident.
Three years after the Wright Brothers started flying, the Scientific American said it was all a hoax. Edison's light bulb got the same treatment. Ditto Semmelwise's pleas to get surgeons to wash their hands. The AMA threatened to take away the license of any surgeon that did this.
So, what about cold fusion? Has it any potential? If it didn't we wouldn't see it being fought so vigorously. It started out, as usual, being ridiculed. Then, when researchers proved it was real, Congress forced the Patent Office to stop considering any cold fusion patent applications. One man got several through by accident. The Patent Office has a separate path for applications from old people who might not live long enough for the usual procedure. Jim Patterson, a Sarasota FL inventor, being my age, qualified as old and is the only man to get cold fusion patents.
Jim formed Clean Energy Technology, Inc., and soon started demonstrating working cold fusion cells. He put one on display at an energy conference, with one watt of electricity going into the cell and 1000 watts of heat coming out. He demonstrated a cell on Good Morning America that was generating plenty of excess heat, plus it was operating using radioactive fuel and decontaminating it as it generated heat.
Here's a way to decontaminate all that radioactive waste from our nuclear plants without burying it in Nevada's Yucca Mountain. It's a fuel the government will pay us to use!
In addition to the patent problem, which is enough to stop most researchers, the government notified all colleges and universities that if any cold fusion experimenting was done, even by undergraduates, the school would no longer be eligible for any government research funds…for anything.
Cold fusion has the potential to provide us with unlimited non-polluting energy at less than a fiftieth the cost of oil, gas, or coal. A simple unit about the size of a refrigerator could heat and provide electricity for any home or business.
The fuel would probably be nickel and plain water.
So, how does it work? If you've had any chemistry in school you'll understand it easily.
We take nickel and either coat tiny plastic spheres with it or powder it. This provides a maximum surface area. We put it in water and pass an electric current through the water. This splits the hydrogen and oxygen. The nickel, being like a sponge, sucks up the hydrogen atoms. The oxygen atoms, being much larger, can't get into the nickel, so they're passed off into the air. Once the nickel lattice gets 82% filled with hydrogen, some of the atoms start interacting. Nickel, which has an atomic weight of 58.7, picks up five nucleons from the hydrogen, bringing it up to 63.7. Copper has a weight of 63.5, so we have 0.2 left over, which are turned into heat. The nickel slowly is turned into copper.
By the time we apply that to Einstein's E= mc2, the 0.2 mass is multiplied by the speed of light squared, so the resulting energy that's released is enormous for every tiny bit of matter converted. Alchemy! Or, in today's terms, solid-state physics.
I saw the potential for this new technology, so I've published all of the patents issued so far, plus the scientific papers on the subject. Twenty-eight volumes of them.
We have the oil and electric power interests all doing their best to stop any progress in the field. Some day we'll all have simple heating/power units and no further need for power companies or transmissions lines. No more gas stations or cities with smog. No more nuclear power plants or oil refineries.
How seriously is cold fusion being fought? When science writer Eugene Mallove started trying to organize a Congressional hearing on the subject he was murdered and no murderer has been (or will be) found.
It would only take a few million dollars to develop a practical home cold fusion prototype. This would generate trillions of dollars and change the world. The oil companies won't be able to stop this forever.
You know, it seems really unfair to me for a few generations of us to drain the entire world of oil, coal and natural gas, leaving it bare for future generations. Bummer.
It doesn't have to cost thousands of dollars to travel, despite what those travel agency ads promote. You don't have to go Queen Mary II style. I'm a thrifty traveler. In fact I've published two volumes on my travels as guides on el cheapo travel.
Since I've visited 146 countries so far, I think I qualify as an expert. How about a trip my wife and I made to Europe. We flew first class to Munich, where we rented an Audi and drove to Vienna for some of the famous Linzer torte (and sightseeing), then on to Krakow in Poland with a visit to the salt mines. From there to Prague and then back to Munich. We stayed in first class hotels and ate at good restaurants. And how much did the whole trip cost? Under a thousand dollars!
How'd we do it that cheaply? The flights cost nothing. We just used our Continental Airlines credit card miles.
We also take advantage of the bargain fares to London over the Thanksgiving weekend. Like $500 for the round trip flight, plus a first class hotel, free breakfasts, and two London shows. We leave Wednesday evening, get there Thursday morning, rest most of the day, with a show that evening. Then all day Friday and Saturday to sightsee. Like we took a bus tour to Bath and Stonehenge on our last trip. On another we took a train up to Kirton and a walk through nearby Sherwood Forest. They once had a special deal on Lordships so, as the Lord of Kirton, I wanted to visit my town.
Then another show Saturday night and a flight home Sunday morning. We've been to London for three days and I haven't missed a day of work!
Then I read an article in Forbes about lighter-than-air. They said that the Zeppelin Company still had tourist flights over Germany. Well, I'd never been up in a Zeppelin, so we flew over to Frankfort, drove down to Stuttgart, and had a great flight all around the city, with me hanging out the gondola windows snapping pictures.
What a thrill to pass right over the Solitude Castle. In 1958, when I was the President of the Porsche Club of America, I escorted 180 people over to pick up their new Porsches at the factory. The company had the new cars all lined up in front of the castle for us to pick up. We spent the next day at the Solitude race track that went by the Castle, with instruction from Porsche's top racing drivers. What a kick racing our new Porsches around the track, which was a winding country road about ten miles long and closed off to other traffic for the day. It was a ball drifting through the turns at over 100 mph.
If Europe or Asia is too far for you, there's plenty to see and do in your state. There's so much to do in New Hampshire that I publish a magazine on it. NH ToDo. We've got county fairs, balloon festivals, one of the greatest fireworks displays in the world, a bunch of mountains to climb (46 over 4,000 feet), steam train rides, caves to explore, fabulous skiing, and the wildest autumn leaf displays this side of Northern China.
We've got lakes and white water to kayak or canoe. The Cog Railway up Mt. Washington. It's endless. Golf, skiing, snowmobile trails, the Cannon Mountain Tramway. If you're within driving distance, spend some weekends here. It won't be long before you'll be looking for at least a cabin…or maybe a permanent move. These days, more and more, we can work from home. NH ToDo has no offices. Everyone works from home. No commuting.
But there are some places that you really should plan to see. Like the Taj Mahal. Like climbing the Great Wall in China and visiting the terra cotta army in Xian. There's the lost city of Petra in Jordan. I've been there twice!
You say you can't afford to travel? How come? If you had your own business, and I don't mean a mom and pop store or a restaurant, you'd have the money and the freedom to travel. I have a book on the subject, my Secret Guide to Wealth.
Like most everyone else I worked for others for a few years before I wised up and started my own business. I borrowed $1,000 on my car and started making hi-fi speaker enclosures. Within a couple of years I had seven factories under contract and was doing the usual…a Porsche, an airplane, an Arab horse, and a small yacht. Stuff like that. I got all that out of my system. Done that. But I also started traveling. To Europe. Then around the world. Then a hunting safari in Kenya and another trip around the world. I never could have done all that if I hadn't had my own businesses. Oh, what a biography I'll write one of these days!
My message is to get out there and have fun. See the world. Balloon over the South African veldt. Enjoy a music or film festival at Cannes. Ski the Alps as well as Aspen, Vail and Alta. Though I've skied all the Aspen areas, my favorite is Buttermilk. Zooom! Horseback ride the Santa Barbara beach and the mountains around Phoenix. We made a great trip in January to Argentina and Uruguay. And I think Sherry has a trip somewhere else planned. I forget where. I'll put some pictures on my web site when we get back.
#5. Alternative Medicine
As Mensans, we're supposed to have a better ability to think than 98% of the public. So, let's put that extra thinking power into action with a short trip outside the box. I'm presuming that once you recognize you've been living in a box you'll consider cracking open the lid to take a peek.
The subject today is alternative medicine. The box is what you've been conditioned to believe about main stream medicine…about the miracles of modern allopathic medicine.
My great grandfather was the town doctor in my home town. My grandfather was the town druggist, so my interest in medicine may to some extent be inherited. And since my great grandfather was a homeopathic physician, my interest in getting outside the allopathic box may also have been genetically influenced.
Okay, let's start by looking at the box. From the outside.
We're barraged with a seductive lie by the medical industry when they call their work “health care.” Hey, guys, it's not health that gets you to go to a doctor or a hospital, it's a shortage of it…which used to be known as sickness.
This sickness exploitation industry is enormously profitable and not to be messed with. So, naturally, I can't help myself but to mess with it. Must be some sort of death wish, like my talking up cold fusion in an oil drenched world and precipitating an educational revolution in a NEA-controlled world. Or my preaching to a choirless church that college is a ghastly waste of time and money. More about that shtik sometime, if I don't get hit.
Doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, the pharmaceutical industry and the living of thousands of mal-practice lawyers all depend on your getting sick and staying that way. None of them get the slightest benefit from your getting well, or from you learning why it is you've gotten sick.
And what do they say? “Follow the money.”
Now let's, for a moment, hypothesize that a simple, drugless, cure for cancer is found. Who would benefit from that? Only the people who've managed to give themselves this dreaded and deadly disease. The industry would lose an average of $345,000 per patient from this disease which will be affecting 50% of us. That's half, for the arithmetically challenged. That's either you or the guy next to you.
When Dr. Richard Eby, a well-known physician, asked the AMA why they had never investigated any of the civilizations where cancer is unknown in a search of a cure, the AMA's chief counsel explained that the purpose of the AMA, if he would read the by-laws, was to protect the income of doctors. And since cancer was their major source of income, if a cure for cancer was ever found it could seriously affect this revenue source. Therefore, if ever a cure for cancer was found the AMA would make sure that such a cure would never be known to the public. Period.
Well, the fact is that not only is there a simple, no-drug cure for cancer, this cure will also work for any other disease. I said any!
The cure has to do with something that doctors aren't taught in medical school. That's why we get sick. Once that's understood, it's a simple second step to reversing any illness we've foisted on ourselves through not knowing any better. Make sense? I'm not talking rocket science.
Okay, so how are we all making ourselves sick? As I mentioned earlier, it's the poisons we've been putting into our bodies…mainly the food. Once we stop incessantly poisoning our bodies, our immune system can get busy and start repairing the damage we've done.
I love it when I get a call from someone who's read my Secret Guide to Health and tells me that three months ago he could hardly get up and down stairs due to his emphysema…and now he's running up stairs and out shoveling snow. Or the mother with a child suffering from leukemia who calls to say he's completely cured.
Dr. Schweitzer, over in Africa, said that he'd never seen a single case of cancer until the European diet was introduced. Dr. Weston Price, in his Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, visited primitive societies in the early 20th century. He found they were living to well over 100 years in good health, had no doctors and no crime. A few years later, after civilization had reached them, he found their lives shortened, their teeth in terrible shape, and both doctors and police were now needed.
We're poisoning our bodies with cooked food, sugar, pasteurized milk, most meat and fish, caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, mercury, vaccinations, drugs (legal and illegal), stress, fluorides, chlorine, and a bunch more that stem from our modern way of life. Once you wise up you'll never use any bug spray on your skin, most underarm deodorants, live near a power line, and so on. In the meanwhile, until our food supply is made more healthy so you don't keep making yourself sick, you'll be adding mineral supplements, flaxseed oil, code liver oil, silver colloid, and cayenne pepper to your body repair regimen. Oh, and at least a half hour of good music for stress reduction and a couple miles of fast walking out in the Sun with no glasses on so the UVs can get into your eyes.
I go into the details and the back-up references in my book.
It's your choice. You can opt for cancer, heart disease with by-pass operations every year or so until a heart attack takes you out, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, diabetes, or dying from something you got or was done to you in a hospital. Those places are dangerous…they're full of sick people. And if the germs don't get you the food will.
Sitting there watching millionaires playing with various size balls is not a hobby. A hobby should help you build skills and knowledge. I've had a bunch, so I qualify as an expert.
My inventor grandfather, who died a year earlier, came back as an angel and got me interested in electronics when I was 13. And that's been a driving force in my life ever since. It's also, curiously enough, helped bring the world two major technological revolutions.
The first came about when I found several amateur radio clubs putting automatic relay stations on top of mountains and tall buildings to extend the range of their mobile units and handy-talkies. Hey, this is fun! So I put my own on nearby Pack Monadnock Mountain. It allowed any amateur driving around new England to talk with any other, from Connecticut to Maine. Wow!
So I started publishing articles on how to do this and started a Repeater Journal to push the development of the technology. There was no standardization of frequencies, so I organized repeater conferences around the country to get the clubs to standardize…which they did. The FCC regulations were ridiculously complex, so I organized a special hearing which resulted in the biggest change in amateur radio regulations in history. It also helped repeaters grow, from under a hundred to over 8,000 in just a few years…all over the world.
Imagine my delight, when flying from Johannesburg to Mbabane, while talking with the amateurs in South Africa, to suddenly hear the Swaziland repeater and start talking with the Swaziland amateurs! Holy moly!
My editorials explaining that I was able to ski the New Hampshire, Vermont and Aspen mountains, handy-talkie in hand, and make phone calls anywhere in the world through the repeater automatic phone-patches as I skied was something everyone in the world would want to be able to do.
Art Housholder, at Motorola, took my editorials to the top brass and that started the cell phone industry. There are now over three billion people happily burning out their brain cells with cell phones. I started an industry.
In 1975, when the first computer kit came out for hobbyists, I built one…and saw the future. I said “I think I can do it again.” A few weeks later I started Byte, the first personal computer magazine. Then 80-Micro for the Radio Shack computer, InCider for the Apple, RUN for the Commodore, and so on. There was no software for these personal computers, so I started providing it, producing over 250 programs for business, education and fun.
All of the early computers had different standards, so I organized an industry conference in Kansas City to set up standards, as I had with repeaters. I picked that city because it was equally far for all of the participants to travel. The result was the Kansas City Standard protocol, which made it so all of the computers could communicate.
When I started Byte I predicted computers would become one of the largest industries in the world. I sure got ridiculed for that. I have a tape of a talk I gave in early 1976 describing the laptop computer of the future.
See what a hobby can get you into? You never know…particularly if you're open to new ideas.
When I got interested in sports car rallies it didn't take me long to outfit check points with radios tuned to the National Bureau of Standards time signals so they'd be accurate in their timing. I discovered some little mechanical calculators made in Liechtenstein that were ideal for rallying, so I went over and made a deal with the Prince to import them. The Scientific American had an article recently on the Curta Calculator.
We needed accurate stop-watches, so I went to Schwennigen in Germany and got Hanhardt to make them for me.
Hobbies can be loads of fun and profitable too, if you have any entrepreneurial blood in your veins.
Is scuba diving a hobby or a sport? It's both and I love it. I've dived all around the world, from just about everywhere in the Caribbean to the Red Sea, and many of the Pacific Islands. It's a great hobby and wonderful exercise.
The same with skiing and horseback riding. I could write a book on each. Please don't miss out on the fun you can have when you learn these sports.
Photography is another hobby. When I get time I'll start putting pictures on my web site. I spent a lot of my high school time in the camera club dark room developing and enlarging pictures. In the Navy during WWII I was the one with a camera, so I took pictures of everyone in my submarine crew and got them all copies for their scrap books. Those still around still have those pictures, sixty-five years later.
Chess is a great hobby, particularly for kids, It teaches them that success lies in being persistent and aggressive.
Crossword puzzles is another wonderful hobby. It sure keeps the mind active. I love 'em and whip through a couple N.Y. Times puzzles almost every day, plus a cryptogram. Last night I did the easy puzzle in 10 minutes and the harder one in 19. The cryptogram took only four minutes.
I guess writing is a hobby too. I spend a lot of time doing it and it's fun. It also helps keep my mind sharp. So I whip out essays on anything I think people ought to know about, but probably don't. Like hobbies. I've published some collections of my essays. They're listed on my web site (www.waynegreen.com). I've had over 10,000 essays published over the years. Is that a great hobby?
When I was twelve I collected stamps, it wasn't long before I started a stamp company and was selling 'em by mail order.
If you've got hobbies for your mind and take care of your body, you'll never grow old.
It's important to exercise both your mind and your body. I do the mind by reading several magazines a day and a couple books a week. Plus I write essays about what I've learned if I think others will benefit by knowing about it…satisfying my need to share anything I find interesting or fun. I also do two or three crossword puzzles a day.
I love to exercise but, you know, I've never been to a gym. I don't enjoy exercise for the sake of exercising. I want to be doing things. So I ski in the winter and scuba dive where it's warm…like the Caribbean. On a daily basis I'm out there walking. I'm able to combine my hobby of counting the various kinds of wild flowers growing in my pasture while I walk. It got up to over 60 last summer. The pasture was like a huge flower garden, with walking paths mowed through it.
There are a bunch of physical things to do here in New Hampshire. We've got 46 peaks over 4,000 feet to climb, and Mt. Washington at 6,288. That's a climb you'll never forget the rest of your life. And you can take the Cog Railway back down if you're tired. You will be.
Since I enjoy skiing so much, toward fall I do as much of my walking in a Groucho Marx squatting position as I can to build up my leg muscles. You ski with your legs bent and this calls for muscles you don't normally use, even with fast walking. So, squat down a bit and sail along. You'll soon see what muscles are involved. They'll let you know.
While I'm fast walking I pick up a couple good-sized stones and use them to exercise my arms and hands. Plus I look up as high as I can and then down, exercising my neck and eyes. Ditto right and left. Since I spend so much time at my computer and reading, I need all the neck twisting and eye rolling exercise I can remember to do, so everything won't get frozen looking straight ahead.
I used to jog, but the books explained that this is hard on the knees and fast walking is better. It's almost as fast as jogging.
When I'm on trips I get out early every morning and fast walk around the cities. I've covered wide areas of London, Paris, Tokyo, Rome, Berlin, Osaka, Seoul, Taipei, Hong Kong, Madrid, and a bunch of other cities this way…zipping along, camera in hand, in case a good picture presents itself, and seeing everything and the people up close.
By the way, expose as much skin as you can to the Sun during the summer. Don't burn it, just gradually tan your skin. And none of this dark glasses baloney. I try to get at least an hour of Sun every good weather day as I walk around my pastures counting all the different kinds of wild flowers. If you're in the area, drop by and see for yourself. Bring a camera.
Here are some ideas on how Mensa groups can get more members to come to the meetings. Yes, I'm an expert on this.
For some reason, when I join a club it isn't long before I'm elected president. And one of the prime responsibilities of a club president is to grow the membership. It's easy, once you get the hang of it.
The secret? Make the meetings more interesting. And that means you're not just the chairman of a group, you're an impresario in show business.
1. Business meetings are not fun, even if arguments get heated. So, what can you do about that? That's easy, appoint an executive committee and relegate the business to that group. Then all they have to do is give a brief report on what they've done at the next club meeting.
2. It's fun to learn things. And this is particularly appropriate for a Mensa group, where the members need things they can use their mighty brains to think about. This aspect can be satisfied by inviting interesting speakers for each meeting. Make the speaker the main attraction of the meeting.
Having given talks to hundreds of clubs, I'm on familiar ground here. The rule is simple: keep the meeting as short as possible so the speaker can start speaking. I've watched meetings drone on, with arguments of the color the club house should be painted, and then a coffee-doughnut break. By the time I'm introduced most of the members are dozing off, the sugar load overwhelming the caffeine jolt.
Look for controversial speakers. You want to get the members thinking. I have a long list of controversial subjects I enjoy talking about that I offer clubs to pick from. Like how anyone can cure any illness with no drugs. Or proof that the Moon landings were all faked. Or that college is a huge waste of time and money for any kid that would like to make any real money. Stuff like that.
3. Another live spot in the meeting can be a review of a book that a club member hopes to get everyone to read. Have 'em bring the book and give about a five-minute review. There are millions of books out there, of which a few hundred are really great reading. The trick is to find those. I've tried to help with my Secret Guide to Wisdom book, which is a review of about a hundred books that will challenge almost everyone's beliefs.
4. Organize a welcoming committee to greet members and prospective members as they arrive. Have lapel stickers and a marking pen for names.
5. Give members a good strong hint on what's coming up at the next meeting that they won't want to miss. This can be via a newsletter or, these days, via email. And it doesn't hurt to have a club Web site. You could even record the speakers and offer their talks for download.
6. How about organizing club trips? To a TV station, a newspaper or major printing plant, a mail order company, or an observatory. The members will come up with ideas. Bring a camera and put pictures on the Web site or in the club newsletter.
When I was elected president of the Peterborough NH Chamber of Commerce the membership had dropped to less than a dozen. Well, all they had were business meetings. Yawn. So I set up an executive council for that and brought in speakers. I had the governor, presidents of a couple colleges, the heads of three local banks at the same meeting, to explain why we should be doing business with their bank. That was a meeting no one will ever forget. I had computer demos on using personal computers for their businesses.
The first-in-the-nation New Hampshire primaries flooded us with politicians, so I had my choice of those as speakers. I had a bunch of good questions for them, too.
These days I'd bring in a couple local farmers who are producing organic crops, raw milk, meat and eggs.
A year later the membership had grown to over 200 and the meetings were packed.
7, To help build membership I'd make sure that the club marketing committee gets as much newspaper and local radio exposure as possible. Invite potential members to the meetings. Get them to your test sessions. It's easy to get newspaper space, once you know the ropes. I've produced a video on how to generate an extra $1 million in sales just by using PR. Well, the same approach will work for attracting new members. Check www.waynegreen.com for more information.
If you have any really interesting members, help them to get interviewed on local radio and TV shows. And don't forget community TV. For five years I did a weekly community TV show in Manchester NH. It won the Alliance for Community Media prize for the best science program. I'm kept busy giving talks to Chambers of Commerce, Rotary, Lions, Elks, veterans groups, and so on.
Clubs that are creative will grow and prosper. You just have to make meetings so much fun that no one will want to miss one.
#9. How American Mensa Got Started
An article on British Mensa in the Village Voice got me to submit an application to join. This brought an IQ test, which I did and sent back, along with dues. I'd always done well on IQ tests, though the schools and the Navy that had me do them hadn't given me any scores, so I hadn't thought much about it.
As a “C” student, just barely getting through, I didn't have any reason to think I was out of the ordinary.
I did get a hint in high school when aptitude tests were given to help us seniors decide what kind of college might fit best with us. As a radio amateur and having spent several years at the workbench, I wan't surprised when they told me that I had one of the highest mechanical aptitudes they'd ever measured, and I really should consider going to an engineering university instead of Dartmouth for law.
Well, okay. I wasn't enthusiastic about law, it just seemed logical to go to a New Hampshire college since I was born in Littleton, New Hampshire.
So I applied to MIT. They took one look at my grade transcript and passed. Okay, how about Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, in Troy, New York. I guess they were a lot less picky than MIT, because they accepted me as an Electrical Engineering freshman. Oh, modified rapture.
The courses were a bore. Fortunately my ingenuity at crib note making, honed to perfection in high school, got me through the boring courses. Barely. “C” grades again. But I did have fun with my ham radio station in my dorm room and my activity in the Glee Club, and The RPI Players (I was the sound man).
I joined a fraternity and moved my ham station from the dorm to the fraternity house.
Then, on December 7, 1941, the world changed. I was 19 and prime trench bait for the Army. Worse, my grades were still stinko, which helped move my draft classification up several notches.
I spent the summer vacation of 1942 testing transmitters being made for the Army by G.E. in Schenectady. I tried to join the Army Air Force, but when I admitted that I had hay fever they rejected me.
I ended up joining the Navy a couple of days before the Troy draft board had me scheduled to appear for induction. Whew! How I got into the Navy is a story which could add several pages to this account, but it's not relevant to this story.
I signed on as a Radio Technician 3rd Class and started my schooling in radio and electronics. The first three months were on basics, at the Bliss Electrical School in Tacoma Park, Maryland. Then, off to Treasure Island in San Francisco for six more months on transmitters, receivers, sonar, radar and test equipment repairs.
At Bliss, where I loved every minute of the courses, I graduated at the top of my class. I did the same at the Radio Materiel School on Treasure Island.
Then, instead of taking a slot at the Naval research lab in Anacostia, Virginia, across from Washington, I volunteered for submarine duty. And that's a story in itself. I've written a book about my submarine adventures. We came tha-a-a-at close to being sunk a few times, and we ended up being a top scoring boat. The USS Drum is on display in Mobile, Alabama.
After the war I went back to RPI at the government's expense. But by this time I'd almost begun to think. I didn't see electonics as having as much of a future for me as management. That's where the money and power are. I wanted to change my major.
So I went to the school administration and explained that I'd selected EE as a result of the high school aptitude tests. Did that mean that I shouldn't change to management? The psychology department gave me aptitude and IQ tests. The final report was that I had an IQ in the top 1/100th percentile, somewhere over 200, beyond where they could measure with any accuracy, and I could take any damned course I wanted.
Aha, so that's why I was so different from most of my friends, fraternity brothers, and classmates! That's why I somehow became the leader in any group I joined.
So when the Mensa IQ test came along I had no problem with it.
It was the summer of 1960. Lordy, that's 50 years ago! I'd read the article about Mensa and sent for an application. Mensa responded with an IQ test. Well, what the hell, so I did the test and sent it to London. A few weeks later I found myself member #15 in the US. Wow, that and a token got me a ride on the subway. Yeah, I was living in New York City at the time, and had been on and off for about 30 years. Brooklyn, actually.
A few weeks later I got a phone call from Peter Sturgeon, the brother of a well-known writer, asking if I'd be interested in forming an American Mensa organization. Sure, why not? After all, I had plenty of time on my hands. I'd been fired from one of the best jobs in the world a few months earlier and had sold everything I could to get enough money together to put out the first issue of a new amateur radio magazine. I'd been the editor of one of the two amateur radio magazines, but when it got where the publisher owed me over a year's back pay he fired me, promising to make it right. No, I never got a dime.
I was also the president of the Porsche Club of America and active in running the club and putting on car rallies and gymkhanas. Those who participated in my rallies will never forget them. Then there was the Hudson Division Amateur Radio Convention, where I was in charge of organizing and selling the booth space to the commercial exhibitors.
So Peter and I got together in his Brooklyn apartment for the first American Mensa meeting. Since I had duplicating and addressing equipment which I was using for my new magazine, I was appointed secretary. I sent out meeting notices and a little newsletter to all known Mensans and we got together for the next few meetings at my home in Brooklyn. I served cider and doughnuts. After that the meetings were moved to Manhattan, in various member's apartments.
With my new amateur radio magazine growing rapidly in circulation I felt it was time to move from New York to some rural location. I ended up moving in June 1962 to Peterborough, New Hampshire, into a 260-year old 40-room house, which is an interesting story in itself. The house was free! All I had to do was maintain it and pay the taxes! Well, I didn't have any money, so that's all I could afford.
For the next few years I was the Local Secretary for Mensa in New Hampshire. We held monthly dinners, always with interesting guest speakers, and New Hampshire Mensa grew. I published a newsletter, OzyMandius, which was more of a literary magazine than a newsletter. I was glad to get away from the New York Mensans who were so impressed by being officers that the internal fighting was awful.
I felt that Mensa had the potential to be more than small groups of self-congratulatory people, smug with proof of their high intelligence, but I never was able to sell the idea.
Peter moved to Switzerland, and I heard from him occasionally before he died. We'd both dropped our membership in Mensa, there not being any perceived benefits from it. New Hampshire Mensa no longer has monthly meetings with interesting speakers. My wife, Sherry, has a lifetime membership, so I'm able to re-affirm my decision to drop out.
I see Mensa as an incredibly valuable untapped resource of brains, of which far too few are in positions of authority.
Mensa Fun Test