U3A in London Update – 14 February 2022

This information was published on: February 14, 2022

Breaking News

As we go to press, we have been informed that Naomi, our Chairman for the last seven years, has resigned.  I know we are so appreciative of the leadership and guidance she has given to us – her “family” – during this time, particularly during the last two difficult years.  More next week.

Monday Morning Talks

We look forward to Michael Shaw’s talk about Forgotten Musicals.  As there have been some changes in the programme – an up-to-date list is attached – click here

The latest timetables and Handbook are available on the website.

Last week’s breakdown in the Update’s appearance

On Sunday afternoon, our Internet Providers had an “outage” and this problem prevented you from viewing the update until the next day, when the problem was rectified. The timing could not have been worse!

The situation was quickly rescued to some extent when Herbie was able to send out a copy of the full timetable to all of you.  We have many reasons to be thankful for modern technology but we are at its mercy when it breaks down!

From Hazelanne Lewis (our Company Secretary)

Our AGM will be held on 4 April 2022. One of the duties of the AGM is to elect an Executive Committee. Members of the committee do more that attend meetings. They take on roles to facilitate the smooth running of U3A in London. If you would like to stand for election to the committee you need to be nominated by someone. You cannot nominate yourself. The Nomination Form needs to be signed by both the proposer and you in accepting the nomination.

The completed, signed nomination form needs to be received in the office no later than 12 noon on 3 March 2022.

From Wally Howard

Dear All,

I am sure that this week’s films will probably need no introduction, but I hope that you will enjoy them just the same.

On Monday 14th February I will be showing you the documentary The Life and Times of Frida Kahlo in which “Frida Kahlo finally gets the film for her peculiar and dazzling vision of life.” (Variety).  Frida Kahlo famously said of herself “They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t.  I never painted dreams.  I painted my own reality.”    Viewed through the prism of Kahlo’s life and art, Amy Stechler’s film explores the ancient culture of Mexico; the Mexican Revolution; the wildfire of communism that burned through Latin America in the 1920s and 1930s; the innovators in the arts that congregated in Mexico City; and the revival of interest in popular culture for which Kahlo has become a symbol. (PBS)

Wednesday 16th February finds us in Clairton, Pennsylvania for Michael Cimino’s highly-acclaimed film The Deer Hunter where a trio of Ukranian-American steelworkers lives will shortly be changed forever after fighting in the Vietnam War. The film was entirely shot on location and features Stanley Myers’s haunting Cavatina  played by  John Williams.  Peter Bradshaw in his review in The Guardian describes the film as a bold and brilliant Vietnam war epic”.  “Vietnam was different to Iraq and Afghanistan in one vital respect: the soldiers were drafted.  They had no choice.  The idea of sacrifice permeates everything, along with the cruelty and horror,  This is Cimino’s masterpiece.”  Roger Ebert described it as being “one of the emotionally shattering films ever made”.

Thursday’s film, the 1952 Casque d’Or (Golden Helmetis, according to Kenneth Turan writing in the Los Angeles Times, “one of the true glories of French cinema.  It is the story of Marie (Simone Signoret) a beautiful woman of the demimonde and is a bravura period romance that masterfully interweaves love, violence and fate in turn of the century Paris”.  Acclaimed in Europe and said to be Signoret’s favourite role, in 1986 the French Government issued a stamp dedicated to a centenary of French cinema depicting Jacques Becker’s Casque d’Or. An accolade not many films have received! 

I hope that you will join me in Room 1.22 at 2.00pm next week to see some or all of these films.

Common Room Rota

Please let Amalia know if you are willing to be on a rota to look after the Common Room and tell me which day would suit you. The room should be left clean and tidy at the end of each day and restocked if necessary.

Use of Disabled Toilet

There has been some misunderstanding about the use of the toilet near the U3A office.  It is my interpretation that it is available and suitable for disabled people and they do, of course, have priority.  In some cases, people have medical conditions which are not necessarily visible.

However it can also be can be used by others when it is free.  Please use your discretion.

From Christopher Dean

I can’t give a Zoom talk on Tuesday 15 February at 11.40, so my next History of Europe talk will be on 22 February, as I announced last week.

From Anthony Gooch

Spanish Philology will go back to its old time of 11.40 on Wednesdays but will move to Room 1.30.  The class is fortnightly, so the next meeting will be on 23 February. 

From Michael Goodman

I shall be away in France from 9 February until 6 March. Therefore there will be no Cercle Français on Tuesdays at 11.40 during that time (i.e. on 15 and 22 February and 1 March).  I have let my regulars know.

From Rita Wolfisz

Modern Greek Conversation has moved to 11.40 on Wednesdays.  Still in Room 1.26.

From Pauline Malpas

The coffee chat group has agreed to meet on Tuesdays at 4:30pm alternate weeks commencing 15th February and Fridays at 3:30pm alternate weeks commencing 25th February.  You can contact me.

From Stephen Barry

The Thursday London Miscellany class this week is ‘Croydon Airport in war and peace’.

From Susan Cohen

I’m giving a Zoom talk  for the national U3A on 8 March for International Women’s Day and would be grateful if this information could be circulated to our members  – booking is through Eventbrite. The subject is, ‘Eleanor Rathbone 1872-1946: The woman behind the portrait’.

From Pieta Ruck Keene

Influenced by the study that I am doing at the moment (an MSc in Pain Management) I have been writing scripts for meditations. They focus on themes such as dialling down the pain, creating distance from pain, having control, feeling safe and keeping relaxed.

It is possible that guided meditations may decrease nociceptor sensitivity, they may help boost descending pain inhibition, they may increase feelings of safety, they may alter the meaning of pain. I’m not entirely sure how this stuff works but mediation is free, it’s painless, it takes five to ten minutes a day – and so, it might be worth trying. 

From Stanley Volk

Please note we are back live in room 22.1 on Wednesdays  3.10pm.  Warm welcome for all.  Come and join the fun! 


Progress with Hybrid classes – Zoom Buddies needed!

Zooming In; (a coordinator Zooming from home can be joined by members in a designated room in the Town Hall). It’s not difficult to set up but we need a volunteer in each class to know how to do it.  Please let me know it you would like to be shown how.

Zooming Out: (enabling in-person classes in the Town Hall to be available to Zoom viewers at home}.   So far, rooms 1.33 and 2.21 are set up to enable this.  Managing it does need some skill (and confidence) and you can be shown how to do it. There is going to be an experimental trial this week of Shirley Levy’s Art Appreciation class on Mondays at 14.00. if successful, it will be available on Zoom next week from Room 1.33.

To make you smile, maybe!

TEXTING for the over 70s

ATD – At the Doctor’s
BFF – Best Friend’s Funeral
BTW – Bring the Wheelchair
FWIW – Forgot Where I Was
GGPBL – Gotta Go Pacemaker Battery Low
GHA – Got Heartburn Again
HGBM – Had Good Bowel Movement
IMHO – Is Hearing Aid On ?



Best Wishes from the Team