MARCH BEGINS – and our 75th
LOOMS, March 4th at WVRC.
DICK ROBINSON stepped forward to
lead the Pledge, noting that during his 3 ½ years in the service, he
regularly saluted the flag, and that was what he planned to do today.
Some joined him – an interesting
idea, certainly. When PP STEVE SCHERER and PP JIM DOWNIE were announced
as the song leaders, a disrespectful voice inquired if that was the best
we can do – but the facts are that they done good, with Home on the
Range. It should be reported that a number of members were gathered
around the keyboard before we actually started the meeting, and our
rendition sounded better to YOE than this smaller group. This
undoubtedly proves something, but I’m not sure what. MARK BLOCK came
forward with the Invocation, pointing out that theories were fine – but
actually doing something for another human being was both tougher – and
more effective - than just thinking good thoughts. A brief message, but
well done, MARK. And before we moved on, I rose to make an important
announcement – or perhaps it could be called a discovery. I reported
that I had seen SEAN McMILLAN pouring COFFEE into that famous mug he
carries everywhere. Now, while this doesn’t prove what ELSE may have
already been in the mug, it does lessen the mystery somewhat, which I’m
sure you all were breathlessly aware of. (I offer these tidbits of
wisdom without expectation of compensation, of course).
CHRIS BRADFORD couldn’t come up
with any Visiting Rotarians, but there were several guests. AL BELLANCA
had a Special Guest, Saul Dresden, a retired Podiatrist. PDG ANDY
ANDERSON reminded us all of who KEN LEVER was – he was one of the
motorcyclists going on the Death Valley trip, along with PP RON LYSTER
and BILL PIERCE. SUSAN ALLEN again brought Yoshiko Umezawa, our former
Ambassadorial Scholar. Pres. PETER was accompanied by Shirley, and
MICHAEL GINTZ had with him Larry Liebenbaum (Could he be a Special
This being the first meeting of
the month, it was Birthday time. And starting right at the beginning,
on March lst, JIM BECHTEL arrived in Philadelphia. The 3rd
was chosen by WALLY FISCHMAN, in St. Louis, and PP MICHAEL NEWMAN, in
nearby Santa Monica. On the 4th (that’s today, so the fine
is doubled, remember) was TERRY R. WHITE, with the event occurring in
Oceanside. The next day, the 5th, BRUCE HARRIS honored
Chattanooga, TN. PP CHRIS GAYNOR brought us back to Los Angeles, and
his date was March 11th. URI HERSCHER came along on the 14th,
in Tel Aviv, while PP JOHN SINGLETON brought us back to the US, picking
Salt Lake City on that same day.
SHARON RHODES-WICKETT arrived on
the 20th, in La Grande, Oregon. The next day, the 21st,
PDG ANDY ANDERSON honored Buffalo with his arrival, and last, on the 26th,
MYRON TAYLOR, in Goodwill, W. VA.
Pres. PETER then noted some of our
recent social events, starting with Ted Ihnen’s Demotion. This was
followed by the Luau at the TSENG’S, and then the picnic at the SISKEL’S.
He tried to slip in his missing Hump Day, but we were alert to its
non-appearance, at least up to now. We did agree with his mention of the
Sweetheart Brunch at Shanghai Red’s, and he then asked if we enjoyed the
slide shows at the meetings.
All this was a lead up to our 75th
– which is just THREE WEEKS away! This will truly be One For The Book
– Great entertainment, lots of fellowship, good food and drink –
It will be lots of fun. BUT we
need YOU to sign up. As of today, my count is that while 46 members
have sent in their checks, we haven’t heard from FIFTY SEVEN of you yet!
Several of us will do some phoning
this week – but be aware that those who HAVEN’T responded by next week
will be publicly shamed. That is to say, the laggard’s names will be
announced from the Podium – so GET THOSE CHECKS IN, right away, OK?
It was Hobby Day, chaired by LEE
DUNAYER. He had gathered a number of interesting exhibits in the
anteroom, and several members agreed to talk about their hobbies. SHANE
WAARBROEK was first, and his subject was Landscape Photography. SHANE
had some great photos on display, in both color and black and white, and
the first thing he said was that you didn’t need to spend a fortune on
equipment to produce excellent pictures. He uses ASA 50 film, which is
quite slow, but he feels that it provides the best color and depth of
field. This film requires a tripod, since the slightest movement will
blur the image, and this in turn means he takes time to set up every
picture. SHANE started shooting pictures when he was nine or ten years
old, benefiting from the fact that his grandmother drove he and his
brother over most of the United States over the next fifteen years. And
of course, covering his subject by car allowed complete freedom – they
could stop whenever anyone wished, and there was no rush to maintain a
schedule. As his skill increased, he began to do his own processing on
B&W – and again, this isn’t something that can be rushed. While he has
the camera store develop his color, they then scan it onto a CD, and he
takes that and does his own prints. He was asked why he preferred film
to digital, and he feels that the quality of film is superior. In
answer to another question, while in Barcelona, he shot a lot of the
Gaudi structures. He feels that B&W is a lot more difficult than color,
but the results are worth the extra effort. SHANE, your interest and
skill come through as you talk – thanks.
MICHAEL GINTZ brought his cello,
and his friend, Larry, accompanied him on the piano. MICHAEL began
playing in the second grade – and the cello was NOT his first choice.
However, his Mother liked the cello, so THAT was settled…After tuning
up, he and Larry gave us Scherzo, by Carl Webster, an American
composer. It was delightful – varied in tempo, with the piano an ideal
accompaniment, and our only regret was that they claimed they didn’t
have an encore prepared, which everyone wanted. Afterward, MICHAEL
asked me if I had recorded the music, and I confessed that I had not,
since I didn’t think it would help me write up the performance. He
wanted to play it back for his daughter – and MICHAEL, when next you
play, I’ll have it on tape!
SLOSS VIAU provided a dual topic,
Roses and Travel. SLOSS was born in the San Joaquin Valley, and he
learned to prune roses at an early age. He advised that roses need lots
of sun, and then listed some of the fifty plants he currently cares
for. We learned that Elizabeth Taylor was thorny (there were some soto
voce comments at this point), and he reminded us that steer manure is
the best fertilizer, while bone meal is the first layer used in
transplanting. PDG BILL GOODWIN couldn’t resist asking if SLOSS had a
Rotary Rose – and alas, he does not! BOB THOM wanted to know if he had
a Tom Rose, which apparently is yellow – and since that isn’t Marge’s
favorite color, he had to say no again…On that subject, he advised that
listening to your wife is good for marriage longevity – and their sixty
one years together seems to bear that out!
SLOSS switched to his other love,
travel (and flying). He was in Advertising with Western Airlines, which
eventually was bought by Delta. He and Marge began their travels by
flying to Hawaii fifty one years ago. They stayed at the Outrigger
Club, and SLOSS developed the Bird of Paradise as their symbol. They
had a miniature volcano (fueled by dry ice) on the food cart, which
spewed smoke periodically. Western was America’s oldest airline name,
and they made a film which played on this history. He and Marge like
Bora Bora for snorkeling, while New Zealand has the most varied
sightseeing. They discovered Peace and Plenty Island, and began
comparing islands they had visited with a pilot from British Air.
Truly, the VIAU’S are perfect examples of the joys of travel.
PP RON LYSTER was about to take
off on a motorcycling jaunt to Death Valley and environs. He, BILL
PIERCE and KEN LEVER will meet up with eleven other cyclists along the
way, and they will stay at Lone Pine, the Burro Inn, and take in the
Amargosa Opera at Death Valley Junction enroute. PP RON’S new cycle has
been well broken in – last Saturday he put 400 miles on it, just as an
introduction. We wish them well, and they will owe us a full report
next week, OK?
DAN PRICE was up last – and
unfortunately, ran out of time to show his clip of Wunderbar, made in
1934. It starred Dick Powell, Al Jolson, and Fifi D’Orsay and was
choreographed by Busby Berkley. I noted that they sure had a bunch of
blondes as dancers – and I love those 30’s hairdos. Another time, we
really need enough time to show the whole scene, if possible. Anyway,
DAN, thanks for trying.