August 10, 2000



 Well, more or less as promised, here we are again - this time for the meeting of August 10th.  For now, we'll dispense with Prologue, Potpourri and Program - but, less this cause great consternation, these subtitles are subject to possible reappearance.  No doubt YOE will be bombarded with suggestions - I await your pleasure.

 Following the several national, regional and local themes, the Pledge was led by BOB YOUNKER.  PP JIM DOWNIE was busy at his keyboard before the meeting, and then was joined by JACK HARRIS in a rather good rendition of Home on the Range, complete with a flourish or two at the end - well done, and fun for all.  DAVID MATSON, just returned from attending a church onference in Australia, first provided seven reasons  for not worrying about Noah's Ark, ending with the statement that the Ark was built by amateurs, while the Titanic was the product of professionals!  He then asked that our supreme being provide a faith strong enough, deep enough and wide enough to shelter us all. 

ANN ELKIN was poised and ready to introduce the visitors, but there weren't none. Our only visiting Rotarian was our speaker, Dan Martin, President of LA

Sunrise, who was the GSE Leader to Bavaria this past spring.  GEORGE REED  was welcomed back from a long bout with illness, but he looks good and will be feeling better as time goes by.  PP TOM LENEHEN  next conducted an interview with Pres. STEVE, eliciting the information that STEVE was born in the Bronx, where both his parents also were born..  His Mother was anattorney, and his Dad a CPA, these careers resulting from both graduating from NYU. PP TOM inquired as to the existence of some form of schooling in the Bronx, and Prez STEVE allowed as how he matriculated from PS 53 to Taft High School.  This led to some interim time at both The Citadel in South Carolina, and Fordham, which is also located in the Bronx.  (Editorial note - Fordham is famed in football - which they no longer play - for producing the Seven Blocks of Granite, one of whom was later a coach named Vince Lombardi  - but it is soon to be better known for its' graduate school enrolling Joy's daughter, Jennifer , who will be pursuing a PhD in Psychology). 

But back to Prez STEVE - he settled on, and graduated from Farleigh Dickinson University, which is relatively just across the river in New Jersey.  STEVE claims that he earns his keep by negotiating licenses for intellectual property rights. 

There were a few announcements - all of which were so far ahead of today that you'll have to check the front page to find them, OK?  

Our speaker, as noted earlier, was Dan Martin, who was introduced by Ted Ihnen. Dan is with Citibank, and they graciously gave him the time off to spend the required four weeks as leader of this year's GSE team.  He reminded us that the team members themselves have to be between 25 and 40, and cannot be Rotarians. (If they were, it would jeopardize our standing as a non-profit organization, since they would be receiving a benefit from their membership).  

His group was composed of three men and two women, and they soon found that living with local people on this trip was a bit like being a member of their families - mostly good, but you are never 'free' of your hosts except when you fall into bed at night. 

Dan passed out a list of possible subjects, and we were asked to note on the sheets what he should talk about.  As YOE gathered these sheets, it turned out that almost every subject was of interest to someone at WVRC.  We learned

about Fugaris, which some of us had never heard of before.  This is a society founded by a wealthy family, whose purpose is to provide assistance for those who have fallen on hard times.  It is run by Princess Fugari from her

residence in Fugari Castle.  She is a pretty commanding figure, and she runs a tight ship, but a number of locals are materially helped by her Society. 

He found the Rotary Clubs that they visited were relatively informal, and all met in the evening.  Mainly their members were doctors and lawyers - but he found only one club that had one woman member, so he emphasized that his own club was almost half female members. His GSE team developed some good songs, which were well received, and one of their members was an excellent guitarist.  They have an eight-week asparagus season, called spargel, and it is served at ALL meals, or so it seemed. 

 They visited BMW and Audi factories, and later a tractor factory, which was quite different from the automation at the two auto factories.  He strongly feels that the GSE program is most worthwhile, and should certainly be continued.  I saw him afterward and mentioned that Joy and Jennifer had already met Georg Eschenlohr in Munich - I hosted him as the leader of the Bavarian GSE team, and Georg and his wife spent some time with them on their just-completed visit to Germany.  We are indeed an international organization. 

Dan, thanks for all your information and sharing your thoughts. We would certainly agree that it is a most worthwhile program.  We should all consider hosting one of the members of the next GSE team - it is rewarding. 

PP STEVE DAY briefly noted that he is still seeking responses for the Rotary Foundation dinner set for October - and if he doesn't hear from you, you will hear from him! 

Thought for the day - Be kind.  Remember, everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.


                            YOE, Ernie Wolfe.