Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, April 11, 2015

MVNews this week:  Page 11



Mountain Views-News Saturday, April 11, 2015 

Jeff’s Book Picks By Jeff Brown



Fifty-two inspiring and insightful profiles of 
history’s brightest female scientists. 
In 2013, the New York Times 
published an obituary for Yvonne 
Brill. It began: “She made a mean 
beef stroganoff, followed her 
husband from job to job, and took 
eight years off from work to raise 
three children.” It wasn’t until the 
second paragraph that readers 
discovered why the Times had 
devoted several hundred words to 
her life: Brill was a brilliant rocket 
scientist who invented a propulsion 
system to keep communications 
satellites in orbit, and had recently 
been awarded the National Medal 
of Technology and Innovation. 
Among the questions the obituary—
and consequent outcry—prompted were, Who are 
the role models for today’s female scientists, and 
where can we find the stories that cast them in their 
true light? Headstrong delivers a powerful, global, 
and engaging response. Covering Nobel Prize 
winners and major innovators, as 
well as lesser-known but hugely 
significant scientists who influence 
our every day, Rachel Swaby’s 
vibrant profiles span centuries of 
courageous thinkers and illustrate 
how each one’s ideas developed, 
from their first moment of scientific 
engagement through the research 
and discovery for which they’re 
best known. This fascinating 
tour reveals these 52 women at 
their best—while encouraging 
and inspiring a new generation 
of girls to put on their lab coats

 by Marc Peyser & Timothy Dwyer 
A lively and provocative double biography 
of first cousins Eleanor Roosevelt and Alice 
Roosevelt Longworth, two extraordinary 
women whose tangled lives provide a sweeping 
look at the twentieth century. When Theodore 
Roosevelt became president in 1901, his beautiful 
and flamboyant daughter was 
transformed into “Princess Alice,” 
arguably the century’s first global 
celebrity. Thirty-two years later, her 
first cousin Eleanor moved into the 
White House as First Lady. Born 
eight months and twenty blocks 
apart from each other in New York 
City, Eleanor and Alice spent a large 
part of their childhoods together 
and were far more alike than 
most historians acknowledge. But 
their politics and temperaments 
couldn’t have been more distinct. 
Do-gooder Eleanor was committed 
to social justice but hated the 
limelight; acid-tongued Alice, who 
became the wife of philandering 
Republican congressman Nicholas Longworth, 
was an opponent of big government who gained 
notoriety for her cutting remarks (she famously 
quipped that dour President Coolidge “looked 
like he was weaned on a pickle”). While Eleanor 
revolutionized the role of First 
Lady with her outspoken passion 
for human rights, Alice made the 
most of her insider connections to 
influence politics, including doing 
as much to defeat the League of 
Nations as anyone in elective office.
The cousins themselves liked to play 
up their oil-and-water relationship. 
“When I think of Frank and Eleanor 
in the White House I could grind 
my teeth to powder and blow them 
out my nose,” Alice once said. In 
the 1930s they even wrote opposing 
syndicated newspaper columns 
and embarked on competing 
nationwide speaking tours. Blood 
may be thicker than water, but 
when the family business is politics, 
winning trumps everything.Vivid, intimate, and 
stylishly written, Hissing Cousins finally sets this 
relationship center stage, revealing the contentious 
bond between two political trailblazers who short-
circuited the rules of gender and power, each in her 
own way.

By Sean Kayden

Crude Folk is a 14-song 
collection coming from 
Sierra Madre native Joe 
Normal. It’s his fifth LP to 
date, but with this endeavor 
the folk rock musician 
explores lo-fi over high-end studio productions. He 
drifts away from the standard way to produce a record 
and it works wonders. The results for the DIY artist 
are grand as he seeps into his own true artistry. Joe 
digs deep from personal stories and tales to find the 
inspiration for Crude Folk. The themes of alcohol, hope, 
love and loss are apparent, but it’s 
the more heartrending topics of 
parenting a special needs child and 
the humbleness as a genuine artist 
that shine throughout the course 
of the album. Taking comparisons 
from Paul Westerberg to Paul 
McCartney, Joe Normal exceeds 
similarities by proving his 
signature sound is both original 
and distinctive. The acoustic 
guitars, the laidback feel, and the 
potent lyrics come together for 
one cohesive sound of pure folk 
bliss. With weathered vocals, Joe 
Normal is a veteran with many 
anecdotes to share, all of which 
consume deep meaning hidden beneath.

 “Mockingbirds (We’re a Couple Of), “Ain’t This A 
Wonderful Life,” and “Valentine” completely gleam 
as the standout tracks on Crude Folk. The folk/pop-
rock sensibilities are present, but the cuts are much 
deeper than typical affair in the genre. There are two 
versions of Valentine – both the acoustic and electric 
rendition. Both are potent in their own earnest ways, 
but the acoustic one tugs on the strings of one’s heart 
just a little bit more. The stripped down take on the 
song definitely feels honest and heartfelt. “One of 
These Days” occupies a sound from classic Beatles 
sound. From the way Joe sings like Lennon to the 
arrangements showcased here, you would think he was 
covering a rare Beatles tune. For all accounts, it works 
tremendously well with a worn-in style that feels like 
something from a bygone era. “I Wish She Would Call 
Me Tonight” is a lovely ballad evoking the 70s singer/
songwriter era. Normal plays a simple tune with a 
profusion of passion and soulful tendencies. “Be Bop A 
Lula” takes you for a spin, rooted 
more in rockabilly. It’s the time 
of song you may hear at a old 
dive bar in Middle America. 
The authentic Americana feel to 
it displays Normal’s penchant 
for psychobilly, a theme he has 
explored with various side-
projects from previous times. 

 Another gem off Crude Folk 
is “Something Starting New.” 
It blends the likes of a 90s 
alternative singer/songwriter 
rock but takes elements from 
previous generations before it. 
It’s a reflective tune that will take 
the listener back to another time 
and place of serenity. Crude Folk ends with “Bookends 
Theme,” a cover of the 1968 classic from Simon & 
Garfunkel. The song is a glimpse of life through youth 
and age. And perhaps, Crude Folk is a byproduct of 
another era where youth had a different meaning than 
what it has now. For what it’s all worth, Joe Normal 
has crafted a record that can speak to generations of 
yesterday and today with sounds sprawling from 60s, 
70s, and 90s folk, pop, and rock. The combination 
of eras and genres merge into a distinct vibe from 
a veteran musician looking back at not only the 
past, but also what the future may have in store. 
Check out for more 
information on this local artist. 

Joe Normal’s – Crude Folk

Artist: Joe Normal

Album: Crude Folk

Label: Rank Outsider Records

Release Date: March 11th, 2015



Many of you remember Fess Parker as the actor who played Davy Crocket “King of the Wild Frontier” 
and Daniel Boone of the TV series in the 60’s. In fact, Walt Disney personally signed Fess Parker to a 
contract in 1954. His fame and fortune set up his second career as a real estate developer. Fess Parker 
died in 2010, but he left his mark in the hospitality arena in Santa Barbara. 

Parker built his first resort hotel in Santa Barbara in 1986 - Fess Parker’s Double Tree Resort. I’ve 
stayed there a few times; it has the perfect view of the Pacific Ocean.

In 1987, Parker purchased a 714-acre ranch thirty-five miles north of Santa Barbara, in the Santa 
Ynez Valley, where he set up Fess Parker’s Winery 
& Vineyard. Still operated by family members 
to this day, the winery produces many award 
winning wines many that have received 90+ 
ratings - a true American success story, you bet! Many of you know that I have a radio show that airs 
live from Santa Barbara every Thursday, and I have been introduced to many wines from the Santa 
Barbara area, and I can say that the 2014 Fess Parker Chardonnay is a true representation of the 
emerging wine industry. The chardonnay is crisp, with aromas of citrus and a touch of honey, and 
for you “oak fans”, you’ll love the fact that is 
has been 100% barrel aged and fermented 
in new French and Hungarian oak. On 
the palate it has great texture with subtle 
tannins, and a refreshing acidity, creating 
a true balance, which makes chardonnay a 
great food friendly wine. The price is right 
at less then $15. I paired it recently with 
my signature home made crab cakes, and 
it made for a great combination.

Dills Score

Each week I will give you my Dills Score. 
Starting with a base of 50 points, I have 
added 8 points for color, 9 points for 
aroma or “nose”, 8 points for taste, 8 points 
for finish, and 9 points for my overall impression, which includes my value rating.

Save the Date: Taste of South Pasadena is on Wednesday April 22nd from 5 PM to 9 PM. Starts on 
Fair Oaks

Total Score 90

Listen to Dining with Dills this Sunday at 6 PM on KLAA AM 830 and watch the TV version 
Saturday and Sundays at 7 PM on Charter Channel 188 



TABLE FOR TWO by Peter Dills



Estate planning is NOT a “set it once and forget 
it” type of process. Your plan will likely need to be 
rejuvenated and renewed several times throughout 
your life. As such, it should be reviewed with a 
qualified estate planning attorney at least every few 
years to ensure the documents have not become 
outdated due to recent changes in the law and that 
they still support your overall planning goals.

 When reviewing your estate plan, keep these ten 
important points in mind:

1. Your estate plan only works if your assets are 
owned properly. If you have acquired new assets 
or sold assets you had at the time you made your 
plan, you will need to update your family wealth 
inventory spreadsheet (and you absolutely should 
have a family wealth inventory spreadsheet which 
lists all your assets) and retitle the newly acquired 

2. Be sure your named fiduciaries are still the right 
people for the job. Your fiduciaries include the 
agents for your financial and healthcare powers of 
attorney as well as the executors or trustees of your 
estate. In addition, confirm all your fiduciaries 
know what to do if called upon and have access 
to the documents they would need if something 
happens to you (we take care of this by sending 
letters to all of our clients’ fiduciaries to introduce 
them to their roles and responsibilities and provide 
them with instructions).

3. Determine if the terms of your estate plan still 
meet your objectives, and that the beneficiaries and 
your bequests are still up to date and relevant. Be 
sure to look at whether you are leaving assets to 
your beneficiaries in a lifetime asset protection trust 
that ensures what you pass on is protected from a 
future divorce, creditors or lawsuits.

4. If you have minor children be sure you have a 
Kids Protection Plan in place naming short- and 
long-term guardians, providing instructions and 
guidelines for those guardians and including 
executed medical powers of attorney that allow you 
to dictate medical care for your minor children in 
case they are injured when you are not with them.

5. Confirm all beneficiary designations for 
retirement plans, insurance policies and financial 
accounts are correct. Never name a minor child as 
the beneficiary (or even contingent beneficiary) of 
an insurance policy or retirement account.

6. Be sure your healthcare and end of life decisions 
are still the right choices for you and that all the 
proper documents, including HIPAA waivers, have 
been executed to allow your agent to make health 
care decisions for you in case of incapacitation. 
Also, consider adding provisions to your health 
care directive that provide for HOW you want to 
be cared for, not just who you want making your 

7. If you plan to make gifts to individuals, see if you 
are taking full advantage of the maximum annual 
exclusion, which is $14,000 in 2015.

8. If you make large gifts to charity, you may want to 
consider making split-interest gifts that provide an 
income tax deduction while preserving an interest 
in property to heirs.

9. If you have already used a majority of your federal 
gift tax exemption, you may want to consider other 
strategies to move taxable assets out of your estate.

10. Talk to your estate planning attorney about 
other estate planning strategies to take advantage of 
your generation-skipping transfer tax or remaining 
federal gift tax exemptions.

 We review existing estate plans to ensure they 
meet these 10 criteria. We also perform a 50-point 
checkup on existing trusts. If you haven’t had a 
review of your existing estate plan within the last 
several years, you’re past due. Give us a call so we 
can help.

 To you family’s health, wealth, and happiness,


 A local attorney, father, and CASA volunteer 
(Court Appointed Special Advocate for Children), 
Marc Garlett is on a mission to help parents protect 
what they love most. His office is located at 49 S. 
Baldwin Ave., Ste. G, Sierra Madre, CA 91024. 
Schedule an appointment to sit down and talk about 
ensuring a legacy of love and financial security for 
your family by calling 626.355.4000 or visit www. for more information.

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: