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July 2023  

FGCU Academy

Greetings, Below is an interesting read I came across and thought I would share it with all
of you. Originally published in SLATE by David Plotz, July 27, 2001, titled – August –
Let’s get rid of it. August is the Mississippi of the calendar. It’s beastly hot and muggy.
It has a dismal history. Nothing good ever happens in it. And the United States would be
better off without it.  

August is when the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, when Anne Frank
was arrested, when the first income tax was collected, when Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe
died. Wings and Jefferson Airplane were formed in August. The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour
debuted in August. (No August, no Sonny and Cher!)  

August is the time when thugs and dictators think they can get away with it. World War I
started in August 1914. The Nazis and Soviets signed their nonaggression pact in August 1939.
Iraq invaded Kuwait Aug. 2, 1990. August is a popular month for coups and violent crime.
Why August? Perhaps the villains assume we’ll be too distracted by vacations or humidity to

August is the vast sandy wasteland of American culture. Publishers stop releasing books. Movie
theaters are clogged with the egregious action movies that studios wouldn’t dare release in June.
Television is all reruns (or worse—new episodes of Sex and the City). The sports pages wither
into nothingness. Pre-pennant-race baseball—if that can even be called a sport—is all that
remains. We have to feign interest in NFL training camps. Newspapers are thin in August, but
not thin enough. They still print ghastly vacation columns: David Broder musing on world peace
from his summer home on Lake Michigan? Even Martha Stewart (born Aug. 3) can’t think of
anything to do in August. Her Martha Stewart Living calendar, usually so sprightly, overflows
with ennui. Aug. 14: “If it rains, organize basement.” Aug. 16: “Reseed bare patches in lawn.”
Aug. 27: “Change batteries in smoke and heat detectors.”  

You can’t get a day off from August, because it is the only month without a real holiday. Instead,
the other months have shunted onto this weak sister all the lame celebrations they didn’t want.
Air Conditioning Appreciation Week, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist Week, National
Religious Software Week, Carpenter Ant Awareness Week: All these grand American celebrations
belong to August. Is it any accident that National Lazy Day, Relaxation Day, Deadwood Day, and
Failures Day are commemorated in August?  

August is the month of vagueness. October is the 10th month, March is the third month. What’s
August—bet you can’t remember. Does it have 30 days or 31? You have to recite the rhyme to
figure that one out. The great writers of history forget August: It rates three mentions in Bartlett’s
Quotations, compared with a dozen for December and two dozen for March.  

The people with August birthdays are a sorry bunch. Sure, Lyndon Johnson, Barack Obama, and
Bill Clinton * were born in August, but the other presidential Augustans are Herbert Hoover and
Benjamin Harrison. Film is represented by Robert Redford and Robert De Niro—but also by John
Holmes and Harry Reems. Third-raters populate August: George Hamilton, Danny Bonaduce,
Rick Springfield, and Frank and Kathie Lee Gifford were born then. August gave us Fidel Castro
and Yasser Arafat. In art, August offers Leni Riefenstahl, Michael Jackson, and Danielle Steele.
(To be sure, not everything that happens in August is so terrible. Raoul Wallenberg, Alfred
Hitchcock, Herman Melville, and Mae West were born in August. Richard
Nixon resigned in August. MTV launched in August. And Jerry Garcia died in August.)  

August can’t even master the things it is supposed to do well. Despite its slothful reputation, it is
not the top vacation month; July is. Nor is August the hottest month (on the East Coast, at least).
That crown, too, is July’s. August is when the garden starts to wither, and when the long summer
days cruelly vanish.  

We should rage, rage against the dying of the light. The United States desperately needs August
Reform. Purists will insist that we shouldn’t tinker with the months, that August should be left
alone because it has done workmanlike service for 2,000 years. That’s nonsense. Calendars are
always fluxing. August itself was a whimsical invention. In 46 B.C., as part of a broad calendar
change, Julius Caesar added two days to Sextilis, an old 29-day month. In the reign of his
successor, Augustus Caesar, the Senate voted to change Sextilis’ name to “Augustus” (as the
Senate under Julius Caesar had renamed the month before, “Quintilis,” “Julius”).  

August was created by politics, and it can be undone by politics. For too long, bureaucrats in
Washington have been telling you how you must divide up your calendar. But these are your
months, and you should be able to do with them what you like. Genuine August Reform will
be hard. It will require tough compromises to protect the special interests of September and
July. (And who better to sponsor this revolution, incidentally, than Sen. John McCain—
birthday Aug. 29?)  

Here is a framework for compromise. Cede the first 10 days of August back to July, thus
extending holiday revelry for more than a week. September would claim the last 10 days of
August, mollifying the folks who can’t wait to get back to serious work. Labor Day would come
10 days earlier, the school year would run longer, and the rush of fall activity could get jump-
started. August itself will keep 10 days. That is just enough: Every summer we’ll be able to toot
happily, “Gosh, August went by so quickly this year!”  

And as for the 31st day, it will be designated a holiday independent from any month. It will fall
after the 10th and last day of August, and it will celebrate the end of that most useless month.  

Everyone is invited and welcome to take classes at ANY of our locations. Make sure to register
early as space can be limited.  

For assistance with registration – call our office (239) 434-4737, and we will be more than happy
to assist you.


View July Daily Calendar  

View August Daily Calendar  

Register Online      

We are available to assist with registration – 239.434.4737  


A Different Look at Florida
@ Moorings Park Grey Oaks July 25 | 2:30 – 4 pm
@ Commons Club at The Brooks July 28 | 1:30 – 3 pm  

Florida is a world unto itself. Join us as we go from the glamour and excitement of Miami Beach
through the primitive Everglades and follow the beautiful beaches of the Gulf Coast all the way
north and west to the Panhandle. We then head inland, where most visitors, and many locals never
venture, to visit the many unique agricultural sites that make Florida famous such as sugar
plantations, orange groves, orchid greenhouses and many other remarkably interesting places.

iPhone/iPad: Tips, Tricks & Secrets All Users Should Know in iOS 16
@ Moorings Park Original Campus July 26 | 10 – 11:30 am   Join this lecture-style presentation
to learn all of the new features, upgrades and enhancements of Apple’s newest operating system for
iPhone and iPad, iOS 16. We explore tips, tricks and secrets that make using your device easier, more
powerful and efficient.

The California Gold Rush
@ The Commons Club at The Brooks July 31 | 1:30 – 3 pm  

On a remote sawmill in the remote territory of California, James Marshall was surprised to find gold
nuggets in the sand. The story of the gold spread faster than bad news through the small towns of
Sacramento and San Francisco. These towns would not be humble for long, as a regional gold rush
turned national and international. Between 1848 and 1853, a most unusual civilization and culture
sprang up in the gold field areas. Join Dr. Franz as he shares this ‘boom or bust’ story.    


See a sample of what is coming over the next week
click on any title below for more information    

Monday July 24
The War of the Worlds Broadcast, 1938
Lincoln’s America: Development of the Transcontinental Railroad
The Germans Are Coming! A German King Takes the English Throne  

Thursday July 27
Venona – Soviet Spies in America  

Friday July 28
Early Islamic Art & Architecture
A Stunning Race: The Kennedy-Nixon Presidential Campaign 1960  

Monday July 31
Queen Elizabeth I – Gloriana  

Tuesday August 1
Women in Western Music  

Wednesday August 2
iPhone/iPad Photos App: Photo Management, Editing, Sharing and More
The Galapagos Islands, Ecuador & The Center of the World    

Coming in August  

Register NOW!  

Supervised Mah Jongg Play (4-part series) begins August 3
Beginner or Advanced
Get yourself ready for season

A course designed for those of you that want to “practice” your game with other players but
ALSO have assistance from someone who knows the game well and is right there to help you
make a good choice.  

New Sessions – August  
Great Discussions Group (2-part series) begins August 3  

Writer’s Collaborative Workshop (4-part series) begins August 8  

Yoga Nidra Meditation (2-part series) begins August 8  

Balance University (3-part series) begins August 11  

Summer Movie Series
International Film and Documentary Discussion Series (4 films)

Sundays at Naples Center – 2:00 pm  

Baby Teeth – August 20 (Australia, 2019, Comedy/Drama, 118 minutes, Rated MA-17)

Retrograde – September 17 (2022, Documentary, 94 minutes, Rated R)  

Bring FGCU Academy to Your Community    

If you would like to have FGCU Academy provide programs at your community, click below
and send us an email with your information: who the contact person is, their email and phone
number along with name of your community. We will be happy to reach out and discuss the
possibilities with them.  

Schedule a Private Education Session for Your Community!    

Travel The World With FGCU Academy
Travel is not reward for working, it’s education for living
View our Pre-Recorded Travel Open House Presentation Now  

LEGENDARY TURKEYView Full Itinerary/Travel Brochure
September 1 – 15, 2023 | 15 days
Exotic sights, scents, and sounds reign in this fascinating land where Europe and Asia meet.
From Istanbul, magnificent “Empress of the World,” to ancient ruins, stunning landscapes,
and the dramatic – and legendary – Turquoise Coast, Turkey engages and beguiles, offering
us an unparalleled small group experience.

ACROSS SPAIN & PORTUGALView Full Itinerary/Travel Brochure
September 10 – 26, 2023 | 17 days
Fortified cities and tiny fishing villages, rugged Atlantic coastline and commanding Pyrenees
peaks, iconic shrines to both religion and fine art, and intimate lodgings in historic paradores
and pousadas – it all awaits on this singular small group journey from Lisbon across the north
of Spain, ending in vibrant Barcelona.

SICILY IN DEPTHView Full Itinerary/Travel Brochure
September 28 – October 9, 2023 | 12 days
Crossroads of the Mediterranean … the “toe” in Italy’s boot … “God’s Kitchen” … Sicily is all
this, and much more, as we see on our stellar small group journey around this Italian island. It’s
lively cities and ancient ruins, temples of man – and of nature, hospitable people and delectable
cuisine … a feast for all the senses.

FGCU Academy Travel 2024 
Call for More Info – 239-434-4838 
Travel Brochures will be available Summer 2023

Moroccan Discovery, May 12-27, 2024    
This land of dramatic contrasts invites us to encounter its ancient ruins and sacred mosques,
endless desert and storied mountains, imposing kasbahs and spirited souks. As we travel from
the imperial cities of Rabat, Fez, and Marrakech to the High Atlas and vast Sahara, we open
our eyes, and hearts, to a truly foreign land, an age-old culture, and genuinely hospitable people.

Classic Safari: Kenya & Tanzania, August 13-28, 2024   
“On safari” … it’s one of the most alluring phrases in all of travel. And Kenya and Tanzania
count among the most alluring places to be “on safari.” As our small group travels from
grasslands to highlands, to reserves and national parks, we enjoy intimate game drives, see
stupendous landscapes, stay in excellent accommodations, and meet gracious local people.

Exploring Iceland, August 15-25, 2024    
It’s a surprising, even astonishing land; one of massive glaciers and rumbling volcanoes, bubbling
mud holes and powerful waterfalls; hugely abundant bird life and just 340,000 people; and where
the sun never sets for six splendid weeks. It’s also perfect for exploring in a small group, as we
discover traveling the breadth of the country and getting an up-close view of this natural “wonderland.”

Southern Italy & Sicily, September 4-18, 2024    
Delight in a special exploration of Italy’s southern climes, from striking Sicily and the breathtaking
Amalfi Coast to unheralded Apulia, the alluring “boot heel” where a vivid history, unique architecture,
and bountiful plains join the sun and sea in creating a prized (and crowd-free) region. Add Italian
hospitality, outstanding cuisine, and notable lodgings for la dolce vita, small-group style.

Scotland: Highlands & Islands, September 9-20, 2024    
“My heart’s in the Highlands,” said Robert Burns – as will you, as we travel from city to country,
mainland to island, on this sweet journey. From loch to loch and glen to glen, we encounter stunning
natural beauty and welcoming clans, while city life serves up the colorful past – and cosmopolitan present.

Provincial French Countryside, September 27-October 11, 2024   
Experience the beauty, allure, and hospi­tality of provincial France, at an easy pace and in a unique
style. Anchored by stays in vibrant Toulouse and enchanting Paris, the journey ­features diverse
Languedoc, the remote Dordogne, the lovely Loire Valley, and historic Normandy as we stay in
charming rural inns and small country hotels. It’s a small group tour de force!

New Zealand Adventure, October 10-25, 2024    
It’s a tale of two islands as our small group journeys from New Zealand’s North to its South, through
lively cities and pristine fiords, past lush farmland and enchanted forests in a land where the outdoors
is the national shrine. Add engaging “Kiwis” and intriguing indigenous cultures – it’s a pure New Zealand

Southeast Asia Odysseys, October 31-November 18, 2024   
Engaging, diverse, intriguing … This just begins to describe Southeast Asia and our small group odyssey.
We cruise the Mekong through Laos; explore the spectacular – Angkor Wat – and the sublime – Ha Long
Bay; and engage with local farmers and hill tribespeople on this comprehensive, well-paced adventure    


FGCU Academy Needs Your Support Today to Ensure that Our Critical Mission of Senior Education
and Enrichment Continues!  

FGCU Academy is ready to serve the SWFL community for the 2023 Season—Learning, Growing,
Sharing, Socializing. I am excited to welcome you this year to the new FGCU Naples Center, which
is located at 704 Goodlette Frank Rd N, Suite 330 in Naples. Also, we have two new locations in Lee
County, Pelican Landing in Bonita Springs and the FGCU Kleist Center on main campus. As always,
both locations are open to all our students.  

Our passion keeps us moving forward and your donations will do the same. Please take a few minutes
to consider donating to ensure our continued success. All amounts make a difference in strengthening
the work we do in the community.  

Your gift will allow the Academy to offer more than 1,500 diverse and fascinating programs at more
than fifteen locations throughout SWFL. Please visit our website to review the rich and varied
programmatic offerings that are available this year. Through our mission we promise to enrich the lives,
minds and social well-being of more than 10,000 SWFL adults and seniors during our 2023 season.  

Donate online at  

I am grateful for your consideration to support this vital community outreach program this year.  

I look forward to seeing you at a FGCU Academy program soon. Please contact me directly at 
[email protected] or 239-434-4838 with questions or to learn more.  

In gratitude, John J. Guerra Director of FGCU Academy            

FGCU Academy Collier / Lee / Charlotte
704 Goodlette-Frank Rd N Suite 330
Naples, FL 34102  

239-434-4737   [email protected]
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