The Flywheel

Next Meeting: Friday, July 8th  Club Dark on July 1

Tackling hunger in our midst

Rotarian Larry Sly, Executive Director of the Food Bank and President of Concord Rotary visits Richmond Rotary to discuss programs that address hunger in Contra Costa County.


Meeting of Friday, June 24th

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

Alan Baer rang the bell and called the meeting to order for the last time as Club President. After a short delay to locate an American flag and bring it into the room, John Nicol led the pledge of allegiance. Stoney asked for a moment of silence for freedom, peace, and justice on earth.

Rotarians with Guests

  • Connie Tritt introduced her guest, fellow attorney Richard MacBride.
  • Jim Young introduced his good friend since childhood, Doug Clark, who’s visiting from Utah.
  • Rafael Madrigal introduced his guest, Michelle Itagaki, Executive Director of the Richmond Convention and Visitors Bureau.
  • Glenn Daggs introduced his friend and former police colleague, Danny Harris.


Because of the July 4th holiday weekend, there will be no Richmond Rotary Club lunch meeting on Friday, July 1.

Special Events

Erle Brown made his last announcement as the Club’s Rotary Foundation Chair. He introduced Joan Davis as incoming Foundation Chair and announced his own Paul Harris plus six. Thanks, Erle, for all your great work with the Rotary Foundation!


Jim Beaver handled recognitions.

  • Dan Sanders recently celebrated his third wedding anniversary. John Nicol added that Dan’s wife, Sarah, will always be known to some as “Kitty”, a last-minute name substitute used on a past Reno Train Trip when a roster had to be hurriedly compiled without all names available from an original list.
  • Richard Alexander self-recognized for his birthday last Sunday.

Happy and Sad Dollars

  • Stoney was happy about his grandson’s recent graduation from high school.
  • Joe Bagley was happy to be back at Rotary, explaining that, because Rita’s mother is living with them now, he’s spending a lot of time in the shop taking care of business … not because he doesn’t enjoy being with his mother-in-law but because Rita’s busy taking care of her … or something like that.
  • Joan Davis had happy dollars for having completed her second year at the Richmond Community Foundation, for her granddaughter’s graduation from Berkeley High School, and for her oldest son’s newly born child (a grand-baby that she’ll be visiting soon in Milwaukee).
  • John Nicol offered some happy dollars and this thought for those who talk about “getting old”: maybe you’ve arrived when both your children are senior citizens (which both of John’s are).
  • George Egan had some happy dollars about his recent visit to Scotland and his joke (with mixed reviews) about scotch and urine.
  • Herb Cole offered happy dollars for some teasing of Bob Dabney and for welcoming “visiting Rotarian”, Jon Lawlis, who rejoined us after a brief hiatus.

Norm's Nonsense

A new widow was at the funeral parlor making final arrangements with the undertaker when she decided to take a look in the casket and was horrified to see her husband was wearing a brown suit. She called the undertaker over and said, "I told you a blue suit. All his relatives, friends and associates have always known him in a blue suit. You have to change that right now."

Undertaker: "But there's not much time left before the service."
Widow: "I don't care, we can wait a little but get it done."

The service proceeded with only a short wait and afterwards the widow was congratulating the undertaker on the nice service and also wondered how the undertaker had accomplished the blue suit so fast.

Undertaker: "Well, I remembered we are having a funeral later today for a gentleman in a blue suit. If we had tried to undress and dress the two gentlemen it would have meant a lengthy delay of your service, so I just switched heads."


Skewered and roasted

In keeping with longstanding Rotary tradition, outgoing Club President, Alan Baer, was put on the skewer for a little roasting.

Being ever the investigator, Glenn Daggs cleverly and playfully led the research into Alan’s entrepreneurial beginnings and confirmed the old adage that “Life Changes Everything”.

At a very early age in the crib, Alan developed an obsession for stuffed bunnies (aka hares, which rhymes with hairs, which Alan seemed to have plenty of back then). Hares would figure into later business start-ups.

While in college, Alan tried a summer job with Verizon while spending hours on the phone answering “yes” to the relentless questioning about being able to hear them now. He then started a “Hare (Hair?) Club for Men” with shiny-top Sid Chauvin as one of the early investors and an even younger Bill Koziol being one of the early beneficiaries of Alan’s magic potion.

There were other business escapades along the way, from “Baer Car Wash, Inc”, with rather unique roles for female and male employees, to “Baer’s Bunny/Hare Wear”, which suffered from Hugh Hefner’s already well-established market position.

During his investigation, Glenn found that Alan often came up short in more ways than just business success. In family photo after photo, one stunning fact consistently stood out. It’s something that even his wife hasn’t been able to change. Alan really likes short-sleeved shirts!

As the program moved into the gifts and awards phase, Glenn presented Alan with a handsome pair of slip-on long sleeves complete with attractive Rotary cuff links. Alan was also given a Rotary appreciation plaque with gavel and his Past President’s Pin.

With the roasting fun over, there was a standing round of applause as Alan was honored not only for his hard work and dedication over the past year as Rotary Club President but also for his successful business operation (Armor Locksmith Services) and selfless community service. Thanks, Alan, for giving so freely and good-naturedly of yourself for others!

Since incoming Club President, EJ Shalaby, was not able to be at this meeting, we will welcome him at the next Club gathering on July 8.

- Tom Waller, Rotating Scribe