The Flywheel

Next Meeting: August 27th

Peacable Kingdom by Edward Hicks
The Peacable Kingdom, Edward Hicks

Harlan Kerr, Director of Curriculum for the West Contra Costa Unified School District, reports on the effects ofthe Peace Rug program in kindergarten and first grade classrooms, which the Richmond Rotary funded last year.

Mr. Kerr will broaden his discussion to address the value of character education in elementary schools.

Last Meeting: August 20th

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

John Nicol led us in the pledge and Herb Cole invoked a moment of silence for peace and freedom for all.  Our thoughts duly elevated by pledges and lofty suggestions, we sat back down.

Rotarians with Guests

  • Jim Macmillan, a past city council member, was the guest of Don Lau
  • Marsha Tomassi, a long time friend of the club, also came to lunch today representing John Z as his campaign manager.  


  • Richmond Rotary had a booth at the Chamber business Expo in Pinole in the town center.  
  • Richmond Rotary will be serving dinner at Grip on 10/27, 11/24, & 12/15.  We need 4-7 people each evening to volunteer.
  • Erle Brown reminded the usual suspects that contractor’s lunch coming up – he said you know who you are.

New Member

Heather Kulp was inducted into the club today and was given the traditional red badge.  We look forward to her Who Am I presentation.

Happy and Sad Dollars & Recognitions

  • Dan Sanders donated some undisclosed amount of money to celebrate the undisclosed numbers of years since his birth.
  • From the Truth is Stranger than Fiction file: Ted Abrieu and his daughter for her 29th birthday both got tattoos.  And we got to see Ted’s ornamented skin. Wow! 
  • Marku informed us that in a competition to find the place on earth closest to Paradise, Finland was the winner. (Is that because Paradise is in the up direction from the globe? Then why not the North Pole?)
  • Bill Watnabe told us about the second wedding of his daughter and hopes it will be cheaper than the first wedding.
  • Alan announced that Santa, his wife, was in the Plunge picture that appeared in the West County Times. He donated some money to recognize the recognition.

Norm's Nonsense

Ponderisms ...

 -Why is bra singular and panties plural?

 -Health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.

 -If quizzes are quizzical, what are tests?

 -You go the ballet and see girls dancing on their toes. Why don't they just get taller girls?


Mayoral Candidate John Ziesenhenne

John Ziesenhenne

John Ziesenhenne, aka Z, the fiancé of last week’s most lovely speaker, told us today why he would be a better mayor for Richmond than any other candidate, especially the current mayor.

John is not new to the city.  He served on the council after graduation from Cal as the youngest City of Richmond Councilmen ever, from the mid 80’s to the mid 90’s.   He often says “I Love the City of Richmond” -- that alone qualifies him to be mayor.

His agenda if he is elected is (note the order):

  1. Jobs
  2. Jobs
  3. Jobs
  • We have 18% unemployment in this city and getting people employed will improve the quality of life in the city and make is safer” he said.
  • He says the city has positive financial momentum with the bulk car importing operation now generating revenue after a very expensive $38,000,000 port upgrade.
  • Z is a law and order man and plans to keep the police force at 195 officers.
  • He thinks that the 5% sales tax on marijuana dispensaries is too low and should have been 10%.  In general his position on the marijuana issue is closely aligned with Butt’s position – If we have to tolerate it lets tax and regulate the hell out of it!
  • Z tells us his special talent is communication.  He says he will regularly meet with all constituents in the city – a situation that he says does not exist now.
  • Z is worried that organized labor has hobbled the city with excessive wages packages and the city is using the one time Chevron money to plug the hole.  He thinks that the Point Molate could fill the hole in the budget and provide jobs.
  • Z will be proud to work and communicate fully with the men and women of our public safety unions, who strive 24/7 to keep us safe [This statement is a correction of what had been posted earlier in the Program notes. That earlier statement did not reflect Z's presentation but instead our scribe's own opinion about these workers.]
  • If you support this agenda make you checks out to “Friends of John Z” and get them to Marsha Tomassi.