Wednesday, July 29, 2009

About tonight's MINDSHARE

Getting to the MINDSHARE was relatively easy by local bus service--basically, you get to the stop when it's due to arrive--but it sure was a pain having to wait for half an hour (probably longer) to catch the #4 home, and I was definitely on the verge of just calling a cab. But the bus finally showed, and I felt this super-endurance bravado, which when I get it, I have an automatic urge to splurge. Like on a call liquor beverage at the Chatroom. But I resisted, and walked straight home, once I disembarked from the bus. And had an ice cold bottled Shock Top in front of the computer. But I do digress...

The MINDSHARE is what I want to tell about. I got there right on time for the scheduled 30 minutes of chewing and chatting, and there was a sizeable finger food spread set up--which was nice. Fruit, tiny sandwiches, tea, and veggies for me. I greeted a few women I recognized in the friendly crowd, including Lucy from La Panorama, Marcy Paul from the YWCA's Racial Justice program, and of course, Hispanic Women's Network of Texas - Fort Worth chapter prez, Christina Elbitar (who also co-owns Chadra's Mezza Grill). The panel discussion got started right on time, with an effusive introduction by Pat Alva-Green, followed by a brief recitation of the "rules" of the session--time limits for panel speakers, dismissal of formal titles in favor of just using the women's first names "since we're like a family."

And then the women got down. The testimonials and commentaries were frank, but still socially appropriate--no mean name-calling or slurring in this setting. The HWNT ladies are too gracious for that. But it did seem that the mostly-female audience counted on ex-mayor pro tem (but still on the FW Council) Kathleen Hicks to bring out the edge in the dialogue, and she did. Thank god for that. Otherwise, it might have been a long, dull presentation. It just takes the presence of one surefire truthteller to up the ante for the others at the table, because that's just what happened. Inspirational and advocacy-oriented, but never adversarial or prissy trite, this first-time MINDSHARE allowed women in power suits to speak their powerful minds--forthrightly and sisterly.


From Kathleeen Hicks (who announced that she will be joining the Board of Trustees for Texas Wesleyan U later this year):

"Sometimes it seems that leaders [in Fort Worth] think there are twenty men who run it all."
"The bathrooms in the pre-council chambers are just for men."

From Mary Lou Martinez, the first Hispanic appointee to the Castleberry ISD Board of Trustees:

"Fort Worth is still very much a 'good ole boy' town."

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