Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Dr. Ruth -- In Person

I had the great honor of attending a presentation with Dr. Ruth Westheimer (and Dr. Minkin, an amazing GYN from Yale) and she is so unbelievable -- petite, blunt, warm, funny, and legendary. She was even more amazing in person that you could even imagine, sharing advice and stories on menopause and sexuality. The two doctors were doing a traveling road-show on "Sex Over 50". We were greeting with "Sextinis", a cranberry martini, and served delicious appetizers and mini-desserts. The session started with "menopause" bingo and door prizes before Dr. Minkin shared her wisdom and Dr. Ruth had us captivated.
Her story is one of epic proportions, starting in a Swiss orphanage in 1939, moving to Israel after both parents were killed at Auschwitz, joining the Haganah, moving to Paris, taking her Nazi reparation funds to move to New York and finish college, which led her to an interview on a radio show in 1980 -- the rest is history. We watched her in 1983 on a tv show, co-moderated with Larry Angelo. I asked her why Larry wore such a big watch, and she said she would ask him but had never noticed. I think it was such a petty question to ask someone who was selected by People magazine as one of the most intriguing people of the 20th Century.
When the program ended, we were treated (by Novo-Ortho, the makers of Vagifem) to the most recent book by each speaker, a t-shirt and a personal book-signing. A night to remember, and I am pinching myself that I saw Dr. Ruth in person. She was endearing.