NEXT MEETING: February 8, 2013
Tales from the South Pole
Back by popular demand, Scott Shackleton, Assistant Dean for the College of Engineering at U.C. Berkeley, will unravel the mysteries of the real discoveries at the South Pole.
MEETING OF February 1, 2013
Club President Jim Young called the meeting to order with a litany of adjectives beginning with the letter R. Let it be noted that it is not true that Jim has accepted an offer to work as a writer for Sesame Street.
And while on the subject of fanciful writing, let us also note that the scribe for this meeting, Josh Surowitz, came down with the flu a few days later. Webmaster Nick Despota is, therefore, filling in for Josh by deciphering Josh’s chicken-scratch notes and plying his own fanciful memory of the meeting’s proceedings. So here goes.
Stoney Stonework asked for a moment of silence for “freedom, peace, and justice on earth”, and Henry Kelman, observed that the Dow Jones has hit a record high.
Jim then handed the floor over to Jordan Simmons, director of the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts. Jordan described the work now underway at the Center, leading up to the launch of Richmond Tales, the play that spotlights the experiences of two children growing up in the Iron Triangle. Jordan announced that the Center needs our help on many fronts. As you know by now, the Richmond Rotary is the major financial partner for the production. But in addition to our monetary support, the success of the production will also depend on volunteer support, including transportation for young people, getting the word out, organizing food for the reception, and more. Stay tuned.
Mister Phillips, the president of the Pinole Rotary; and Paul Bonnar, president of the Pleasant Hill Rotary, visited us on this day.
Rotarians with Guests
Jim Young introduced Linda, his wife, and Jordan Simmons, executive director of the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts. Jon Lawlis introduced Darlene, by now a familiar face. Joan Davis also introduced her guest, but we apologize for not noting his name.
- The grand opening of the Rotacare Free Medical Clinic will take place on February 21st, between 4 PM and 7:30 PM. The celebration occurs at 2 venues: presentations at the Bermuda Room of the Richmond Auditorium, at Civic Center Plaza; and tours of the clinic at Brighter Beginnings, 2727 Macdonald Ave. Please RSVPfor the event. The Clinic is getting some great press. Check it out in this San Jose Mercury news article.
A number of Richmond Rotarians have volunteered to support the Rotacare Clinic by providing food for the staff one day a week for a month, on an alternating cycle with other District Clubs. If you’re one of those big-hearted souls, do you best to attend the Grand Opening.
- Last month the pace of life for Bill Koziol and his wife Kirsten recently bumped up several notches. The bumper: a healthy baby girl, Eve Elizabeth, born on January 15th. Both mom and baby are healthy; Bill is busy. Congratulations.
- The Crab Feed (February 2nd) at Salesian High School was sold out, with 134 people tickets purchased. Yeah! Kudos to the event organizers; sympathies to the crabs.
Happy and Sad Dollars
- Henry Moe was delighted that Salesian High School students, about whose athletic prowess he’s frequently reported, could now boast academic achievements: two students earned college scholarships.
- Josh Genser was happy to inform members about a carnival at Beth El Temple, and has tickets available for those wishing to attend.
- Joan Davis scored big. She attended the black-tie dinner at the Obama Inaugural Dinner, where she enjoyed hob-nobbing with the party’s elite. Earlier in the day she watching Beyonce lip synch the National Anthem. (But Joan, she did actually sing it, just not at that time.)
- John Wilson was happy the month of January was behind him, and with it, all this “medical crap!”
- Erle Brown wasn’t just happy. He was downright giddy. Leveling his sites at Josh Genser, Erle crowed that the UC Berkeley rugby team had trounced, creamed and annihilated the Stanford team. Score 176 – 0. That’s not a typo: 3-figures to zip.
- Jim Young was also feeling good. His eye surgery went well. Quoting a former president, “It’s that vision thing.” Extremely important. Congratulations, Jim.
- Joe Bagley, stepped outside of his M.C. role to recall what happened 32 years ago on this day. On that unusually cold one in Chicago, Rita woke him at 1:30 in the morning: “It’s time, Joe.” And so the couple made their way to the hospital, where a few hours later their daughter Lana was born. Happiness indeed.
The defendant knew he didn’t have a prayer of beating the murder rap, so he bribed one of the jurors to find him guilty of manslaughter. The jury was out for days before they finally returned a verdict of manslaughter.
Afterward the defendant asked, “How come it took you so long?”
The juror said, “All the others wanted to acquit.”
Dad's Acending Rare Elevations
The line separating pleasure from pain can be incredibly thin, a thought triggered by this week’s guest speaker. Decked out in colorful GoreTex, climbing boots, goggles, and carrying an ice pick, Alamo Rotarian Jim Brandt recounted the adventures of a group of Rotarians—they call themselves D.A.R.E.—who scale some of the world’s highest peaks: Mt. Elbrus, Mt. Rainier, Mt. Kilimanjaro and others. (D.A.R.E. stands for Dads Ascending Rare Elevations.) A few years ago our own adventurer, Jon Lawlis, joined a high-altitude group of daredevils on the Kilimanjaro assault.
Assault? As Jim spoke it seemed that this was less a matter of man against mountain than man against self, as in self-inflicted torture. One-hundred pound packs, terrorist threats, icy terrain negotiated in pre-dawn hours, precipitous drops, high altitude sickness, powerful winds and temperatures hovering around 30 degrees below zero. Are we having fun yet?
As it happened, dessert for the meeting was vanilla ice cream. Frozen, creamy white and entirely safe. Yeah, we’re having fun.
Nick Despota, pinch-hitting scribe