Crowd at gala was mad for the movies

SCENE & HEARD

May 13, 2007|By SLOANE BROWN

At the Maryland Film Festival opening night party, the lobby of the Brown Center at the Maryland Institute College of Art was so crowded that it was tough to reach out and grab an hors d'oeuvre as a waiter squeezed by. However, that only heightened the feeling of excitement that many of these film lovers had about the three days ahead that would be jam-packed with movies.

"It sort of amplifies the energy. I think it's great to be among so many intriguing and creative people. And all in this great contemporary space," noted Baltimore Museum of Art director Doreen Bolger.

Guests happily jostled against one another. Louis and Maureen Van Dyke, Susan Garabedian, Heidi Slacum, Ellen Small, local filmmakers Kim Moir and Steve Yeager, Sascha Wohlhandler, Steve Suser, Steve and Lorrie Walker, and Michael Styer compared notes about the program of short films they had just seen in the festival opener. They discussed which films they planned to see over the weekend - some trying to get advice from festival director Jed Dietz or programming manager Skizz Cyzyk.

Guests had the chance to talk with the subject of one of the evening's films - Baltimore resident and world-class pianist Leon Fleisher, who is featured in the 2007 Oscar-nominated documentary, Two Hands. Fleisher, meanwhile, was in awe of the filmmakers present.

"I mean this profoundly. There were extraordinary films tonight. I'm really honored to be among them," he said.

A Drink With Bob Caret

Secrets of success: energy, young mental state

He may have grown up in Maine, but Bob Caret, 57, has spent more of his life in Towson than anywhere else. He first came to Towson University in 1974 as an organic chemistry instructor. Over the next two decades, Caret became a full professor, then dean of sciences, and finally TU provost. In 1995, Caret departed to take the job of president of California's San Jose State University, returning to TU as its president in June 2003. He is married to Liz Zoltan, a vice president at 1st Mariner Bank. They have four children: Colin, 27; Kate, 25; Kat, 22; and Kelly, 20. Caret and Zoltan live in Guilford with their 8 1/2 -pound Maltese, Malita Muffin.

"We call her Muffy. The kids named her. We didn't!"

Are you surprised by the length of time you've spent at Towson University?

Liz and I were reminiscing the other night, and the fact that I've been on this campus [on and off for] 32 years is amazing. Seems like only yesterday. When I arrived, I was 26. You really don't feel that much older ... but every day you're reminded that you are.

Do you find yourself confronted with your age a lot?

No. I've always had a young mental state. And a lot of energy. I think I live a young life. I'm fairly extroverted, in terms of physicalness. I jog and exercise a reasonable amount. ... For about 26 years, I've averaged exercising five to six days a week. ... When I was younger, I was very, very heavy. When I was a first-year professor here, I weighed about 270. For health reasons, I got into losing the weight. I dropped almost 100 pounds, and I've been able to keep about 70 of that off. ... I used to run about 1,600 miles a year. I don't do that anymore because my body can't do it. My feet. My legs. Today, I NordicTrack. I jog. I spin.

What are some other passions of yours?

One of them is to effect change. I'm a doer. ... In personality profiles, there are the decision-makers, the data people and the feeling people; 90 percent of us at the executive level, we're decision-makers. I like to say I'm a decision-maker, but I like to have a couple of data people and a couple of feeling people around me. Effecting change, that's my major passion. ... The other part of me is sort of a dichotomy. Most people see me as a triple-A-type extrovert and in most of my daily life, I am. But, the other side of me -- the yin and the yang -- I can become the ultimate introvert. Liz and I disappearing for a weekend with the dog and not seeing anyone for two to three to four days is something we do. ... We go to our house on the Eastern Shore where we're not the president and first lady, we're Bob and Liz. ... It gives us a chance to regroup mentally and emotionally. We try to do it a couple of times a month.

Are there words you live by?

What I say to a lot of people is: "Do 5 percent more than anybody else and you can be a leader." And that's a truism.

Social Calendar

FRIDAY

2007 BICENTENNIAL GALA

Benefits University of Maryland School of Medicine

Black-tie

Where:

Convention Center, 1 W. Pratt St.

When:

6:30 p.m.

Tickets:

$250

Information:

410-706-3901

FRIDAY

8TH ANNUAL BLAST!

Benefits USS Constellation Museum

Casual

Where:

Pier 1, 301 W. Pratt St.

When:

8 p.m.

Tickets:

$50; $100 including 6:30 p.m. Officer's Dinner aboard ship

Information:

410-539-1797 or constellation.org

SATURDAY

THE WATER BALL

Benefits the Contemporary Museum

Cocktail attire

Where:

Tide Point, 1050 Hull St.

When:

6:30 p.m.

Tickets:

$250, $200 members

Information:

410-783-5720

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