MARCH BEGINS – and   our 75th LOOMS, March 4th at WVRC.


DICK ROBINSON stepped forward to lead the Pledge, noting that during his 3 ½ years in the service, he regularly saluted the flag, and that was what he planned to do today.

Some joined him – an interesting idea, certainly.  When PP STEVE SCHERER and PP JIM DOWNIE were announced as the song leaders, a disrespectful voice inquired if that was the best we can do – but the facts are that they done good, with Home on the Range.  It should be reported that a number of members were gathered around the keyboard before we actually started the meeting, and our rendition sounded better to YOE than this smaller group.  This undoubtedly proves something, but I’m not sure what.  MARK BLOCK came forward with the Invocation, pointing out that theories were fine – but actually doing something for another human being was both tougher – and more effective - than just thinking good thoughts.  A brief message, but well done, MARK. And before we moved on, I rose to make an important announcement – or perhaps it could be called a discovery.  I reported that I had seen SEAN McMILLAN pouring COFFEE into that famous mug he carries everywhere.  Now, while this doesn’t prove what ELSE may have already been in the mug, it does lessen the mystery somewhat, which I’m sure you all were breathlessly aware of.  (I offer these tidbits of wisdom without expectation of compensation, of course). 


 CHRIS BRADFORD couldn’t come up with any Visiting Rotarians, but there were several guests. AL BELLANCA had a Special Guest, Saul Dresden, a retired Podiatrist.  PDG ANDY ANDERSON reminded us all of who KEN LEVER was – he was one of the motorcyclists going on the Death Valley trip, along with PP RON LYSTER and BILL PIERCE.  SUSAN ALLEN again brought Yoshiko Umezawa, our former Ambassadorial Scholar.  Pres. PETER was accompanied by Shirley, and MICHAEL GINTZ had with him Larry Liebenbaum (Could he be a Special Guest, MICHAEL?).


This being the first meeting of the month, it was Birthday time.  And starting right at the beginning, on March lst, JIM BECHTEL arrived in Philadelphia.  The 3rd was chosen by WALLY FISCHMAN, in St. Louis, and PP MICHAEL NEWMAN, in nearby Santa Monica.  On the 4th (that’s today, so the fine is doubled, remember) was TERRY R. WHITE, with the event occurring in Oceanside.  The next day, the 5th, BRUCE HARRIS honored Chattanooga, TN.  PP CHRIS GAYNOR brought us back to Los Angeles, and his date was March 11th.  URI HERSCHER came along on the 14th, in Tel Aviv, while PP JOHN SINGLETON brought us back to the US, picking Salt Lake City on that same day.

SHARON RHODES-WICKETT arrived on the 20th, in La Grande, Oregon.  The next day, the 21st, PDG ANDY ANDERSON honored Buffalo with his arrival, and last, on the 26th, MYRON TAYLOR, in Goodwill, W. VA.


Pres. PETER then noted some of our recent social events, starting with Ted Ihnen’s Demotion.  This was followed by the Luau at the TSENG’S, and then the picnic at the SISKEL’S.  He tried to slip in his missing Hump Day, but we were alert to its non-appearance, at least up to now. We did agree with his mention of the Sweetheart Brunch at Shanghai Red’s, and he then asked if we enjoyed the slide shows at the meetings.

All this was a lead up to our 75th – which is just THREE WEEKS away!   This will truly be One For The Book – Great entertainment, lots of fellowship, good food and drink –

It will be lots of fun.  BUT we need YOU to sign up.  As of today, my count is that while 46 members have sent in their checks, we haven’t heard from FIFTY SEVEN of you yet!

Several of us will do some phoning this week – but be aware that those who HAVEN’T responded by next week will be publicly shamed. That is to say, the laggard’s names will be announced from the Podium – so GET THOSE CHECKS IN, right away, OK?


It was Hobby Day, chaired by LEE DUNAYER.  He had gathered a number of interesting exhibits in the anteroom, and several members agreed to talk about their hobbies.  SHANE WAARBROEK was first, and his subject was Landscape Photography.  SHANE had some great photos on display, in both color and black and white, and the first thing he said was that you didn’t need to spend a fortune on equipment to produce excellent pictures.  He uses ASA 50 film, which is quite slow, but he feels that it provides the best color and depth of field. This film requires a tripod, since the slightest movement will blur the image, and this in turn means he takes time to set up every picture. SHANE started shooting pictures when he was nine or ten years old, benefiting from the fact that his grandmother drove he and his brother over most of the United States over the next fifteen years.  And of course, covering his subject by car allowed complete freedom – they could stop whenever anyone wished, and there was no rush to maintain a schedule.  As his skill increased, he began to do his own processing on B&W – and again, this isn’t something that can be rushed.  While he has the camera store develop his color, they then scan it onto a CD, and he takes that and does his own prints.  He was asked why he preferred film to digital, and he feels that the quality of film is superior.  In answer to another question, while in Barcelona, he shot a lot of the Gaudi structures.  He feels that B&W is a lot more difficult than color, but the results are worth the extra effort. SHANE, your interest and skill come through as you talk – thanks.


MICHAEL GINTZ brought his cello, and his friend, Larry, accompanied him on the piano.  MICHAEL began playing in the second grade – and the cello was NOT his first choice.  However, his Mother liked the cello, so THAT was settled…After tuning up, he and Larry gave us Scherzo, by Carl Webster, an American composer.  It was delightful – varied in tempo, with the piano an ideal accompaniment, and our only regret was that they claimed they didn’t have an encore prepared, which everyone wanted.  Afterward, MICHAEL asked me if I had recorded the music, and I confessed that I had not, since I didn’t think it would help me write up the performance.  He wanted to play it back for his daughter – and MICHAEL, when next you play, I’ll have it on tape!


SLOSS VIAU provided a dual topic, Roses and Travel.  SLOSS was born in the San Joaquin Valley, and he learned to prune roses at an early age.  He advised that roses need lots of sun, and then listed some of the fifty plants he currently cares for.  We learned that Elizabeth Taylor was thorny (there were some soto voce comments at this point), and he reminded us that steer manure is the best fertilizer, while bone meal is the first layer used in transplanting.  PDG BILL GOODWIN couldn’t resist asking if SLOSS had a Rotary Rose – and alas, he does not!  BOB THOM wanted to know if he had a Tom Rose, which apparently is yellow – and since that isn’t Marge’s favorite color, he had to say no again…On that subject, he advised that listening to your wife is good for marriage longevity – and their sixty one years together seems to bear that out! 


SLOSS switched to his other love, travel (and flying).  He was in Advertising with Western Airlines, which eventually was bought by Delta.  He and Marge began their travels by flying to Hawaii fifty one years ago.  They stayed at the Outrigger Club, and SLOSS developed the Bird of Paradise as their symbol.  They had a miniature volcano (fueled by dry ice) on the food cart, which spewed smoke periodically.  Western was America’s oldest airline name, and they made a film which played on this history.  He and Marge like Bora Bora for snorkeling, while New Zealand has the most varied sightseeing.  They discovered Peace and Plenty Island, and began comparing islands they had visited with a pilot from British Air.  Truly, the VIAU’S are perfect examples of the joys of travel.


PP RON LYSTER was about to take off on a motorcycling jaunt to Death Valley and environs.  He, BILL PIERCE and KEN LEVER will meet up with eleven other cyclists along the way, and they will stay at Lone Pine, the Burro Inn, and take in the Amargosa Opera at Death Valley Junction enroute.  PP RON’S new cycle has been well broken in – last Saturday he put 400 miles on it, just as an introduction.  We wish them well, and they will owe us a full report next week, OK?


DAN PRICE was up last – and unfortunately, ran out of time to show his clip of Wunderbar, made in 1934. It starred Dick Powell, Al Jolson, and Fifi D’Orsay and was choreographed by Busby Berkley.  I noted that they sure had a bunch of blondes as dancers – and I love those 30’s hairdos. Another time, we really need enough time to show the whole scene, if possible.  Anyway, DAN, thanks for trying.