Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, December 1, 2012

MVNews this week:  Page 17



 Mountain Views News Saturday, December 1, 2012 

STUART Tolchin..........On LIFE




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 


Joan Schmidt


LaQuetta Shamblee


Pat Birdsall


Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Stuart Tolchin

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Hail Hamilton 

Rich Johnson

Chris Bertrand

Ron Carter

Rev. James Snyder

Bobby Eldridge

Mary Carney

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Greg Wellborn

Dr. John Talevich

Ben Show

Sean Kayden

Jasmine Kelsey Williams


 The past couple 
of weeks have really 
been confusing for 
me. The only thing 
I clearly remember 
is UCLA beating and 
demeaning USC. 
Last year they beat us 
50-0 and this year we got back at them. 
Almost at the end of the game one of our 
guys caused injury to the beautiful and 
successful USC quarterback, thereby 
completely ruining their season—a 
season which had started out for them 
so positively. On this day the Rose 
Bowl and its hundred thousand seats 
were packed the day was beautiful and 
we happy Bruin fans congratulated each 
other and felt like we really showed ‘em.

 For me this victory was directly 
connected with OUR victory in the 
Presidential election. Everyone knows 
that all UCLA grads are Democrats and 
all USC (University of Spoiled Children) 
grads are Republican Bankers who are 
lucky to have escaped prison. (I know 
this is a completely unfair, inaccurate 
generalization but who cares – it’s only 
football right.) I sort of know that all 
the anger we Bruin fans direct at USC 
is kind of falsely created and all in fun, 
but it doesn’t feel that way. My feelings 
about USC and Republicans are kind 
of similar that way. I really don’t like 

 I really think Bush and Cheney and 
Rumsfeld and Condoleezza Skeeza are 
War Criminal who should be placed on 
trial and publicly forced to defend their 
lies. This past week Republicans have 
vigorously attacked UN Representative 
Susan Rice for appearing on Sunday 
talk shows and describing the attacks 
in Bengasi as being spontaneous 
demonstrations rather than planned 
terrorist attacks. As far as I am 
concerned her statements were not 
only inaccurate but also inadequately 
researched. I do think it is irresponsible 
for high for high level members of the 
administration to mouth statements 
without making a serious attempt to 
determine what is true. Otherwise 
don’t say anything.

 Still, as I hope most of you remember, 
this kind of error pales in comparison 
with the willful misrepresentations 
made by Bush Administration officials 
who knowingly spoke of non-existent 
Iraqi WMDs and pushed the country 
into an unnecessary war resulting in 
unnecessary hundreds of thousand 
deaths. Poor Secretary of State 
Colin Powell was used to manipulate 
the United Nations by presenting 
inaccurate information. It makes me 
sick and probably also made him sick. 
As you should know, this acclaimed 
War Hero and Republican Secretary 
of State endorsed the Democrats in 
the last week of the election campaign, 
perhaps as some attempt at atonement.

 Really there is no possible atonement. 
We are constantly lied to and constantly 
lie to ourselves. I don’t really hate USC, 
I just like to pretend I do and I fool 
myself. Similarly and more importantly, 
I really don’t care that the government 
constantly lies to the public—I just like 
to pretend I care. I keep writing about 
the need for transparency but I am 
willing to forget that the Wiki Leaks 
people, Corporal Bradley Manning 
solitarily confined in prison and 
Julian Assange, are unable to leave the 
Ecuadorian Embassy in London. Their 
underlying alleged crime is an attempt 
to present the truth to the world. There 
is little in the recent news about these 
men, which only emphasizes that 
Wiki Leaks provided more revelatory 
information than the combined efforts 
of all other news media. While these 
men are kept in virtual isolation and are 
forgotten by many of us, others, like me, 
are involved in Turkey Day celebrations 
and are happily distracted while rooting 
for their Home Team. One more 
cheer!. Go Bruins! Beat SC.

 While I have been ruining my health 
feasting on Thanksgiving delicacies and 
visiting old friends, I have completely 
forgotten my concerns about gun 
control. I don’t seem to be the only one 
who has forgotten. Did either candidate 
mention much about gun control? All 
I can remember is non-stop talk about 
the bewildering subject of taxes. This 
talk went on while Americans keep 
killing each other with guns and while 
we supply the rest of the world with 
weapons and ammunition. What is 
the solution? Do I stop caring about 
football or watching sports? What 
about Thanksgiving and Christmas and 
Halloween decorations? What about 
planned vacations. Aren’t those times 

 What about my work? What about 
my health? I’m not getting any younger 
you know, and will I ever be secure 
enough to retire? Hey, what about my 
kids—I still worry about them every 

 You must get my point. Why do I worry 
about gun control and governmental 
transparency and education and 
ecology and immigration and health 
care? Why worry about the future at all? 
Don’t I have enough problems without 
thinking about Israel and Syria and the 
starving infected Africans? You know, 
many people don’t seem to worry about 
the future of the planet or of mankind. 
Many people content themselves with 
becoming involved in Community 
Activities and charities and Holiday 

 If one has community concerns, it 
is possible to do things that are helpful 
in the short run. It is not what I do. I 
watch the news and read the paper and 
write my articles and feel guilty that I 
am not saving the planet—oh, and I 
root for UCLA and local sports teams. 
I get together with my kids all the time 
and my wife and I and our dog are 
generally pretty happy. When I have 
a little extra-time, like during these 
holidays, I see myself in this different 
perspective. Why I have I allowed 
myself to be distracted from the true 
purpose of my life? Or can the purpose 

 Maybe what’s missing is another way 
to keep score?


 And we need people freed to keep 
us aware of the present score and future 
implications---and we need to keep our 
eyes on that scoreboard even on


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A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder


 Let me make it very clear right up front that I am in favor of 
as many “ha ha moments” as possible. I could not get through 
a week without my daily dose. I firmly believe that laughter is 
the appropriate medicine for the soul. Some people, according 
to their demeanor, need a little more laughter than they are 
presently getting.

 That said, let me quickly point out that some things are not funny.

 Of course, most things in my life and about my person are marvelous targets of 
humor. I do not take myself very seriously. I am not sure any wise person would take 
me seriously either. In fact, I would highly suspect a person who took me seriously. 
I can take a joke as well as the next person and I can give it back as well as the next 

 I have had some weeks when, if it were not for a little bit of humor I do not know 
how I would have gotten through. So, if you can’t do anything you can at least laugh. 
I firmly believe that the best laugh is when you can laugh at yourself. You might as 
well laugh at yourself, everybody else is.

 Then, there are those serious moments in life that beg for no laughing. I would 
recommend that warning signs are put around these areas reading, “Positively No 
Laughing Zone.” With this sign should come a severe penalty for those who violate 

 That said; let me explain an area in my life where the sign should be permanently 

 The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and I were having supper with another 
couple. We try to do this at least once a month and keep up with each other’s progress 
or lack thereof.

 We were having a great meal and as we came to the end, I stopped the waitress 
and said, “I would like some ice cream for dessert.” As far as I am concerned, that 
is a rather reasonable request and quite in keeping with the environment I was in.

 “What kind of ice cream,” she queried, “would you like?”

 When it comes to ice cream, ice cream is simply ice cream to me. If there is a flavor 
of ice cream I do not like, it has yet to be invented. I love ice cream. My favorite song 
is, “I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream.” In my date book, there is no 
better ending to a wonderful meal than ice cream.

 I remember my grandfather’s favorite ice cream was vanilla. He would not eat any 
other ice cream; he thought they were polluting it with colors. To him an ice cream 
sundae was as close to blaspheme as he ever would get. “Why ruin,” he objected, 
“the ice cream with all that slop?” He wanted nothing coming between him and the 
purest experience of ice cream he could get.

 Me, I love ice cream regardless of the flavor or color or “slop.”

 I looked at the waitress and simply said, “I don’t care what flavor you bring me. 
Surprise me. As long as it isn’t broccoli.” That was supposed to be a joke. Ha ha ha.

 As the waitress left our table, we resumed our conversation and shortly she 
returned with the ice cream.

 Upon her arrival, I looked at her and then the ice cream she was bringing and 
almost screamed aloud. Of all the blasphemous things to do to a customer, this has 
to take the cake.

 First, she had an ice cream bowl with three scoops of ice cream, vanilla, strawberry 
and chocolate. No problem. However, on the side of the dish in plain view for 
everybody to see, especially me, was a piece of broccoli. Broccoli! The forbidden 
fruit or whatever it is.

 My dining companions thought this was the funniest thing they had ever seen. 
Particularly, the dining companion that was going to come home with me that night.

 Not only did they laugh. The waitress laughed. The table next to us began to laugh. 
The table next to them began to laugh. It was not long before everybody within 173 
miles was laughing at my ice cream/broccoli dessert.

 Actually, not everybody was laughing. I was not laughing. Broccoli, no matter the 
presentation, is no laughing matter in my book.

 If matters could not be worse, my wife, through her hilarity spasms, reached over, 
picked up the broccoli and began eating it in my presence. Talk about adding insult 
to injury, my injury was vastly insulted.

 I may have been smiling on the outside, but I assure you I was more than frowning 
on the inside. Some things are funny; broccoli is not one of those things.

 Driving home amid the muffled chuckles on the other side of the front seat, I 
thought of what the apostle Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (KJV), “Rejoice 
evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God 
in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

 I know that when Paul said, “In every thing,” it included things like broccoli. I 
must say that there are some things in life, like broccoli, where the thanksgiving is a 
matter of faith. I will never learn to love broccoli, but I can muster up enough faith 
to thank God for all things, including broccoli.

Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, PO Box 831313, Ocala, 
FL 34483. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 1-866-
552-2543 or e-mail ( ) . His web 
site is ( ) 


 Time to get back to highlighting years of note. And if you 
are a movie buff, 1939 should be a banner year for you. It’s 
considered the greatest year in the history of Hollywood. This 
is due to the unbelievable number of good, no, extraordinary 
movies that came out. 

Normally, 5 or so movies are nominated for best picture in a 
year, 1939 had 10 movies nominated for best movie. Among 
them include:

 Gone With the Wind The Wizard of Oz

 Wuthering Heights Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

 Stagecoach Goodbye Mr. Chips 

 Ninotchka Of Mice and Men

 Dark Victory Love Affair

Other famous and successful movies of 1939: 

 Jesse James Gullivers Travels 

 The Little Princess The Hunchback of Notre Dame

 Beau Geste Destry Rides Again

 Intermezzo The Man in the Iron Mask

 Stanley & Livingston Babes in Arms

Among the significant events of 1939: 

 Worlds’ Fair opened in New York. The last public execution took place in 
France. And yes, it was with a guillotine. World War II began when Germany 
invaded Poland and Russia invaded Finland. Einstein wrote President Roosevelt 
a letter suggesting we develop an atomic bomb

So, how much did things cost in 1939? 

 $3,800 new house

 $28.00 house rent

 $1,700 wages

 10 cents gallon of gas

 8 cents loaf of bread

 $700 new car

 $16.00 toaster

Famous births: 

 Francis Ford Coppola, George Hamilton, Lily Tomlin, John Cleese, Frankie 
Avalon, Marvin Gaye, Paul Hogan, Ralph Lauren, Lee Majors, Lee Harvey 
Oswald, and the Ayatollah Kamenei. 

Most popular Christmas gifts for kids? 

 Batman Comics and View-Masters. If you could afford it, you could buy the 
first car with air conditioning. The car? A Packard.

The biggest hit songs of 1939:

 Over the Rainbow. Judy Garland

 Moonlight Seranade Glenn Miller

 God Bless America Kate Smith


 I hope you include Jane Fuller’s “The Arctic Express” one woman Christmas 
Show 7:00 pm Sunday night, December 9th, at the Sierra Madre Playhouse. 
Tickets can be purchased by calling (626) 355-4318 or visiting 
$20.00 a ticket and includes her wonderful full length Christmas CD. The show 
is family-friendly but geared more toward the child hiding inside us adults. 
And if Santa Claus looks a little like me, it’s really just coincidence. 

 “A Cinderella Christmas” is being performed the next few Saturdays. 
Showtime is 11:00 am, also at the Sierra Madre Playhouse. Is the show good? 
I’ve seen it 9 times. My eyes tear up several times during the performance 
because the show involves the young kids in the audience creating wonderful 
memories these young’un’s will never forget. Tickets can also be ordered by 
calling (626) 355-4318. The Playhouse is at 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd in Sierra 

RICH Johnson

Mountain Views News

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