WVRC on April 11th - our new
KEVIN KOMATSU led the Pledge, and again, he allowed everyone to get set -
it works much better that way. I was approached by JACK HARRIS to
help with the singing, and JACK suggested that I come over to the piano so
he could give us the sometimes-confused key. I went over, he struck
the key - several times - and wouldn't you know it, before I could get
back to assume my rightful place as Conductor " America" was
taken up by the audience. Actually, we sounded pretty good, although
I suppose you could opine that this is a self-serving comment. (but bottom
line - we had fun). PP MIKE NEWMAN allowed us to sit down, and first
told a story about a somewhat inebriated young man who got on the NY
subway. A priest who was aboard was put off by his appearance, but
the new passenger ignored him, picked up a newspaper and began to read.
Shortly, he asked the priest, "Father, what causes arthritis?
The priest quickly told him it was the result of loose living - just the
kind of behavior the young man was engaging in. The young man then
countered, "It says here that the Pope has arthritis". MIKE'S
invocation began by his reading an old e-mail he received from a priest
right after 9/11. The e-mail began by pointing out to the terrorists that
while they had knocked down some buildings, they had missed America.
What they missed was an understanding of what is really America.
This is a land of opportunity, free speech, and a place where no one
has to agree with what you say. America lives in its people. He
then gave a short prayer, thanking our Maker for all the men and women who
have served in our armed forces, from WWII to the Gulf War, and today, in
Afghanistan. YOE was watching the audience - they paid close
SUSAN ALLEN was willing to introduce our Visiting Rotarians, but there
didn't seem to be any. But Lo and Behold, one popped up - Barr
McClellan, in investments, from the Gulfport, Miss. Club, and SUSAN passed
the baton to KACY ROZELLE, who did the honors. KACY pointed out that Barr
has two sons: Mark is the youngest member, ever, of the President's
Council of Economic Advisors, while his brother, Scott, is a Special
Assistant to President Bush and is a Deputy Press Secretary. Scott
and KACY were roommates in college. BRUCE ROLF was accompanied by
Marie, and SLOSS VIAU introduced his older son Skip, who is visiting from
Seattle. RUDY ALVAREZ came forward to talk about our District
Conference - we now have over twenty members who will be there, and we are
all excited about the excellent speakers and program. I have invited
our former member, PAUL WINEMAN, to hear what the son of the Shah has to
say - PAUL knew the family. We were reminded that PP JOHN SINGLETON has
opened his home in Carlsbad on Thursday afternoon - please stop by to say
KATHY MARIE REZOS next gave her craft talk, which was originally scheduled
for last week. Sponsored by RUDY ALVAREZ, Cathy has literally lived
all over the U.S + Mexico, where she was helping her Mother with Nursing
Duties. She is an experienced
Pilot and is active in Angel Flight. This is a group of volunteer
pilots who carry medicine and/or patients where they need to go on an
emergency basis. She is working on a program to bring Rotary into
the action, and this is certainly a win/win situation for all concerned.
CATHY began by pointing out that she would NOT mention a slight mix-up in
her being identified as a stripper - the word should have been Candy
Striper! She related a conversation she overheard when she was in
the 2nd grade, staying with her grandmother.
Her grandmother kept saying, yes, yes, and finally, well, I'm sure that is
true. CATHY waited with baited breath to find out what the
conversation was about. Seems that her teacher had asked her
students to write an autobiography - and while everyone else wrote perhaps
a half page, CATHY turned in eight or nine PAGES! She has had
an extensive religious history, first as a Catholic, then a Baptist, next
an Episcopalian and was even baptized by a Coptic Priest in Egypt. Shortly
afterward, she learned that she was Jewish!
She became a Registered Nurse, specializing in infant care, and has twenty
years of experience in secondary education. She loves schools -
attending or teaching.
She is a management consultant, helping small businesses with their
problems. Her experience in this field is wide, and her results have
been very good. CATHY likes to be involved - we'll be seeing
more of her as she learns the ropes of WVRC. In answer to a
question, she outlined her experience as a pilot. When she was 39,
she had a dream that she WAS a pilot, and so it all began. In 1991
she opened an aviation school at Van Nuys airport - at that time, the
busiest general aviation airport in the world! She hired the best
instructors, graduated the most students, and it was a big success. Many
of her students were from Japan - instruction there is quite expensive.
She wrote the Manual for all Air Combat Schools, in answer to a
challenge. Don't tell her it can't be done - it's just a matter of
finding a way. CATHY pointed out that we are losing an airport a
week, over the United States - and that's not a good trend. Thank
you, CATHY MARIE REZOS, for sharing your life with us - and Welcome Aboard
April birthdays were noted, with KEN LEVER as the MC. First up was
ELLIOTT TURNER, born on the 1st (and no comments here about aptly named
dates, please) - he hails from Jacksonville, FL. BILL MICHAEL came
along on the 4th, in Dallas, and SHERRY DEWANE was the next day, in
Manitowoc (that's Wisconsin). CLARK MCQUAY, from Alhambra on the
7th. was followed by DICK ROBINSON - the 8th, in Altus - and I'm sure you
all know that's in Oklahoma. Our craft talker today, CATHY MARIE
REZOS was born on the tenth in Longview, TX. PP ERIC LOBERG slipped in
from Utica NY on the 18th. Bruning, Nebraska claims credit for DON PARK,
on the 28th, with CHIN ONG closing the month on the 30th, in
Singapore. KEN closed the presentation with a poem, saying these
Rotarians have all earned an A (can't remember how it rhymed - sorry).
And the birthdayer's were each presented with a psychedelic bouncing
ball, which of course they all began to enjoy. Program chairs for the
quarter, MARK BLOCK and BILL EDWARDS, were thanked for another excellent
group of programs this quarter.
MYRON TAYLOR was our Speaker, and his talks about the Four Way Test have
always been a highlight. Myron was born in Goodwill, W.Va. and his
father refused to allow him to work in the coal mines. He farmed, to
work his way through college, and has been a Minister for SIXTY years.
He's a preacher, it shows, and there is none better.
MYRON has given one or another of his seven versions of this talk on over
occasions, and these talks have now been gathered into a book, along with
forty of the prayers that he used when giving the talks. The book
will be available at the San Diego District Conference - first editions!
Abraham Lincoln gave us his immortal Gettysburg Address in just 272 words.
Perhaps this inspired Herbert J. Taylor, who was a businessman in
Chicago. He had worked for Sinclair Oil and Jewel Tea Co., and in
1932 - the depth of the Depression - he was asked to take over the Club
Aluminum Company. What he inherited was a company that was $400K in
debt, with only a $6,100 bank loan to refloat the business. He had
earlier devised a statement of about 100 words to live by, but felt that
was too long. He refined that to just seven statements - but it was
still too long. So he ended up with just four questions.
He ran these by his four top assistants -a Presbyterian, a Roman
Catholic, a Christian Scientist and an Orthodox Jew - and all agreed that
it "worked for them". Thus the test was born. They
further agreed that they would abide by all its tenets in their jobs - and
that wasn't always easy to do. But they held on, and Club Aluminum
came back - by 1937 they had paid off their debt, distributed over one
million in dividends to shareholders, and totally proved that these twenty
four words could indeed be the basis for business (and personal) success.
Incidentally, those of you who knew DON PARSON, our former member,
may remember that he knew and worked with Herb Taylor. It was a great
source of pride to DON that he actually designed the first desktop
displays for the Test.
So The Four Way Test has been put to the test - and it passed with flying
Myron couldn't resist giving us a bit of history - Herb Taylor was Rotary
International President in 1954-55, Rotary is now in 162 countries, with
l.4 million members. Japan, for one, uses the Test in its high schools.
An example - the Tokyo subway lines offered the use of umbrellas to
their clients, if needed. Once they printed the Four Way Test inside
the umbrellas, they never lost another! He related the story of the
building of the Great Wall of China - 1600 miles long, sometimes 30 feet
high - and the only man-made structure in the world that is visible from
space. Built before the time of Christ, it was finally breached - but how?
The invaders simply bribed the gate guards - thus, the integrity of
the whole massive system depended upon the character of the gate guards!
What actually collapsed was their character.
A quote from John W. Gardner, former Cabinet Member - "The society
which scorns excellence in plumbing because it is a humble activity, and
tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity, will
have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy. Neither its pipes
nor its theories will hold water." The Test is eloquent
in its simplicity, and offers a way to light a candle rather than cursing
Thank you, Myron, once again.
And now, a terrible admission has to be made. Yes, I have made a
SECOND error (and all this time I thought ONE would be my quota) But I
digress. In reporting on Amanda Miller's excellent report last week
about her year abroad in Chile, I managed to completely use the wrong word
in describing the Chilean economy. Her statement was, "for the last
ten years, the Chilean economy has been the most VIBRANT in South
America". Somehow, instead of Vibrant, the word I used was
feeble - they don't sound much alike, and even I questioned why the
economy would be described as feeble. But there - I've said it, and
I'm sorry, Amanda.
YOE, Ernie Wolfe