Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, January 26, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page B:2




Mountain Views-News Saturday, January 26. 2019 

Jeff’s Book Pics By Jeff Brown


Grateful American: A Journey from 
Self to Service by Gary Sinise , Marcus 

The moving, entertaining, never-before-
told story of how one man found his calling.” 
The book is called Grateful American, and 
I promise you after you read it you will be 
grateful for what Gary has accomplished 
and contributed to our country.” -- Clint 
Eastwood. As a kid in suburban Chicago, 
Gary Sinise was more interested in sports 
and rock ‘n’ roll than reading or schoolwork. 
But when he impulsively auditioned for 
a school production of West Side Story, 
he found his purpose--or so it seemed. 
Within a few years Gary and a handful of 
friends created what became one of the 
most exciting and important new theater 
companies in America. From its humble 
beginnings in a suburban Chicago church 
basement and eventual move into the city, 
the Steppenwolf Theatre Company launched 
a series of groundbreaking productions, 
igniting Gary’s career along with those of 
John Malkovich, Joan Allen, Gary Cole, 
and others. Television and film came calling 
soon after, and Gary starred in Of Mice and 
Men (which he also directed) and The Stand 
before taking the role that would change 
his life in unforeseeable ways: Lieutenant 
Dan in the Academy Award–winning 
Forrest Gump. The military community’s 
embrace of the character of the disabled 
veteran was matched only by the depth of 
Gary’s realization that America’s defenders 
had not received all the honor, respect, 
and gratitude their sacrifices deserve. In 
the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, 
this became Gary’s mission. While starring 
in hits like Apollo 13, Ransom, Truman, 
George Wallace, CSI:NY, and Criminal 
Minds: Beyond Borders, Gary has worked 
tirelessly on behalf of those who serve 
this country, entertaining more than a half million 
troops around the world playing bass guitar with his 
Lt. Dan Band, raising funds on behalf of veterans, and 
eventually founding the Gary Sinise Foundation with 
a mission to serve and honor America’s defenders, 
veterans, first responders, their families, and those in 
need. Grateful American is the moving, entertaining, 
profoundly gripping story of how one man found his 
calling: to see that those who defend this country and 
its freedoms are never forgotten.

Still Life: A Chief Inspector Gamache 
Novel by Louise Penny 

Winner of the New Blood Dagger Award. Chief 
Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surêté 
du Québec and his team of investigators are 
called in to the scene of a suspicious death in 
a rural village south of Montreal. Jane Neal, a 
local fixture in the tiny hamlet of Three Pines, 
just north of the U.S. border, has been found 
dead in the woods. The locals are certain it’s 
a tragic hunting accident and nothing more, 
but Gamache smells something foul in these 
remote woods, and is soon certain that Jane 
Neal died at the hands of someone much more 
sinister than a careless bowhunter. Still Life 
introduces not only an engaging series hero 
in Inspector Gamache, who commands his 
forces---and this series---with integrity and 
quiet courage, but also a winning and talented 
new writer of traditional mysteries in the 
person of Louise Penny.

Eight Dates: Essential Conversations 
for a Lifetime of Love by John Gottman 
Ph.D. , Julie Schwartz Gottman Ph.D., 
Doug Abrams

Strengthen and deepen your love with a fun, 
ingenious program of eight life-changing 
conversations—on essential topics such 
as money, sex, and trust—from two of the 
world’s leading marriage researchers and 
clinicians. Navigating the challenges of long-
term commitment takes effort—and it just got 
simpler, with this empowering, step-by-step 
guide to communicating about the things that 
matter most to you and your partner. Drawing 
on forty years of research from their world-
famous Love Lab, Dr. John Gottman and Dr. 
Julie Schwartz Gottman invite couples on eight 
fun, easy, and profoundly rewarding dates, 
each one focused on a make-or-break issue: 
trust, conflict, sex, money, family, adventure, 
spirituality, and dreams. Interactive activities 
and prompts provide motivation to stay open, stay curious, 
and, most of all, stay talking to each other. And the range—
from the four skills you need for intimate conversation 
(including Put Into Words What You Are Feeling) to tips on 
being honest about your needs, while also validating your 
partner’s own emotions—will resonate, whether you’re 
newly together or a longtime couple looking to fortify your 
bond. You will discover (or rediscover) your partner like 
never before—and be able to realize your hopes and dreams 
for the love you desire and deserve.


In the first part of this series, I discussed the first 
two estate planning tools all unmarried couples 
should have in place. Here, we’ll look at the final 
two must-have planning tools. 

 Most people tend to view estate planning as 
something only married couples need to worry 
about. However, estate planning can be even 
more critical for those in committed relationships 
who are unmarried.

 Last week, I discussed wills, trusts, and durable 
power of attorney. Here, we’ll look at two more 
must-have estate planning tools, both of which 
are designed to protect your choices about the 
type of medical treatment you’d want if tragedy 
should strike.

3. Medical power of attorney

In addition to naming someone to manage 
your finances in the event of your incapacity, 
you also need to name someone who can make 
health-care decisions for you. If you want your 
partner to have any say in how your health care 
is handled during your incapacity, you should 
name your partner as medical power of attorney. 
This gives your partner the ability to 
make health-care decisions for you if you’re 
incapacitated and unable to make them for 
yourself. This is particularly important if you’re 
unmarried, seeing that your family could 
leave your partner totally out of the medical 
decision-making process, and even deny him 
or her the right to visit you in the hospital. 
Don’t forget to provide your partner with a 
HIPAA authorization, too, so he or she will have 
access to your medical records to make educated 
decisions about your care. 

4. Living will

 While medical power of attorney names who 
can make health-care decisions in the event of 
your incapacity, a living will explains how your 
care should be handled, particularly at the end 
of life. If you want your partner to have control 
over how your end-of-life care is managed, you 
should name them as your agent in a living will. 
A living will explains how you’d like important 
medical decisions made, including if and when 
you want life support removed, whether you 
would want hydration and nutrition, and even 
what kind of food you want and who can visit 

 Without a valid living will, doctors will most 
likely rely entirely on the decisions of your family or 
the named medical power of attorney holder when 
determining what course of treatment to pursue. 
Without a living will, those choices may not be 
the choices you—or your partner—would want.
We can help

 If you’re involved in a committed 
relationship—married or not—or you just 
want to make sure that the people you choose 
are making your most important life-and-
death decisions, we can support you in getting 
these essential estate planning tools in place. 
Dedicated to empowering your family, building 
your wealth and defining your legacy,

A local attorney and father, Marc Garlett is on 
a mission to help parents protect what they 
love most. His office is located at 55 Auburn 
Avenue, 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.

All Things By Jeff Brown



New research suggests that much of the material that 
made life possible on Earth arrived after a cataclysmic 
collision between our planet and a Mars-sized object 
billions of years ago, scientists from Rice University 
say. For life to emerge on an otherwise dead planet, an 
assortment of chemical compounds, or volatile elements, 
are required, including carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur. 
Conventional thinking has it that Earth’s volatile elements 
arrived through the steady bombardment of ancient 
meteorites. New research published today in Science 
Advances proposes an alternative delivery mechanism: 
a catastrophic collision between Earth and a Mars-sized 
object, sometimes referred to as Theia, some 4.4 billion 
years ago. This hypothetical collision, which would have 
happened while our planet was still forming, seeded our 
baby planet with the volatile elements required for life.
For many astronomers, geologists, and astrobiologists, 
the notion that Earth’s volatiles arrived on the back of 
primitive meteorites has never been completely satisfying. 
Our planet, along with other rocky planets in the inner 
Solar System, is naturally bereft of volatiles. It just so 
happens that the isotopic signature of Earth’s volatiles 
match those seen in carbonaceous chondrites, the class 
of meteorites typically cited as being the deliverers of 
volatiles to Earth. Problem is, the volatile element ratios, 
such as carbon to nitrogen and water to carbon, in Earth’s 
silicate, mantle, crust, ocean, and atmosphere are out of 
whack with what’s observed in chondrites, leading to the 
so-called “isotope crisis” and doubts about the meteorite-
seeding theory. The new study is interesting in that it 
offers a solution to this problem—but instead of invoking 
a plethora of small meteorite strikes, the authors proposed 
a single, gigantic collision between the Earth and an 
ancient planet.

The next selection in the Off The Page series 
of free staged play readings at Sierra Madre 
Playhouse will be Father of the Bride. 

 Mr. Banks learns that one of the young men 
he has seen occasionally about the house is about 
to become his son-in-law. The young couple don’t 
want a “big” wedding—just a simple affair with a 
few friends! We soon learn, however, that the “few” 
friends idea is out. Then trouble really begins… 
You’ve seen the Spencer Tracy & Elizabeth 
Taylor classic and the Steve Martin remake, now 
hear it live on stage!

 Adapted by Caroline Francke. Based on the 
novel by Edward Streeter. Directed by Roxanne 
Barker, who coordinates the Off The Page series 
with Artistic Director Christian Lebano.

 Caroline Francke’s other plays include The 
49th Cousin, The Fighting Littles and Exceeding 
Small. She also wrote for the screen: Bombshell, 
starring Jean Harlow; The Wiser Sex; The 
Misleading Lady. Additionally, she wrote many 
episodes of the Henry Aldrich radio series. She 
died in 1960.

 Father of the Bride will be performed as a 
staged reading on Monday, January 28, 2019 
at 7:00 p.m. at Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. 
Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre, CA 91024. 
This is just east of Pasadena. There is ample free 
parking behind the Playhouse. Admission is free. 
Donations are gratefully accepted. Website: www. Phone: (626) 355-4318.



The benefits of meditation are 
immense and indisputable. 
It has many fruits many of 
which include emotional 
balance, improved physical 
health and a strong spiritual 
connection. There are studies 
out that connect meditation 
to positive changes in brain 

 It’s never too late to start a meditation practice or 
begin again or re-up your current practice. Things 
get in the way and life happens. What’s important is 
that we go back to the practice. New or not new, don’t 
make it complicated. As Yogarupa Rod Stryker says, 10 
minutes a day is better than 1 hour once a week. It’s the 
consistency that’s going to pay off and help us in our 
daily life each day. Remember, a meditation practice is 
going to provide a place for further development and 
spiritual connection. 

 Always make sure to find a comfortable seat for 
meditation. There’s nothing like having your leg fall 
asleep or having an uncomfortable hip bothering 
you while you’re trying to be still. The seated postion 
should allow the spine to be tall with the natural 
curve in the lower back. If seated on the floor is 
uncomfortable, sit in a chair or against a wall. Set 
aside enough time to sit for meditation and make sure 
you have a space where you won’t fear interruption or 
distraction. Meditation is usually best in the morning 
just after waking up. If you can avoid looking at your 
phone or other electronic device before meditating, 
please do (or don’t). It’s best to have all of your focus 
and awareness moving toward an internal point of 
view. Once there, begin to breathe and relax the body. 
If you use a guided meditation to begin, that’s ok for a 
while. Eventually, you’ll want to move into just sitting 
on your own while maintaining breath, internal 
awareness and visualization.

 Happy Meditating! Again, don’t make it complex, 
even if your head is busy, you are still meditating. 
Learning to focus is part of the process. 

 As you get on the road to beauty and bliss, seek out 
teachers whom you respect and the style of meditation 
that calls to you. Contact me to learn more about starting 
a meditation practice,

Namaste friends, 

Keely Totten, Yoga 

& Meditation Teacher


Real Life Tips from LIfe's Instruction Manual


You have to have a 
thick skin if you have 
ever been friends with 
a defense attorney. The 
same is true for personal 
coaches. Why? We are 
always looking for the 
silver lining. We can 
always see a different 
way to look at things, we look for a different point of 
view, and that is not always a welcome quality when 
all you want to do is rant and vent. Many folks are 
looking for blanket support, a ride or die, a friend. 
Picture this: Your spouse has returned from a hard 
day at work. They are complaining about some 
injustice from the supervisor. As they describe the 
event to you, your response is, "well maybe he didn't 
mean it that way, or have you considered this?" Your 
poor spouse could feel further dejected and alone like 
they are in a true help the bear moment.

"Help the Bear. That means if you see me and a bear 
fighting and you can't come with something good and 
supportive, then help the bear, cause you ain't no help 
to me." "Checkmates", Ron Milner, 1987

The truth is that there is always another way to look at 
things and we can all benefit from a willingness to see 
things from the opposite side. Pretty much nothing 
is black and white. Two people in any situation may, 
honestly, perceive a circumstance differently. In 
your personal relationships, it with serve you well 
to consider another perspective. Do you want to be 
right or do you want to have a relationship? If you 
are prepared to fight every disagreement or opposing 
point of view, you and your relationships will suffer.

Conversely, if you are willing to not make assumptions 
and not take things personally those two qualities will 
help you to foster loving and enriching relationships. 
Be willing to consider you might be wrong or there 
may be another way to look at things. Further, ask 
yourself, "is this disagreement worth damaging my 
relationship? Do I need to be right?" In the words of 
the Disney Princess Elsa, "Let it go." Give people the 
benefit of the doubt. Ask yourself, "Is there a positive 
way to characterize my beloved's behavior?"

Perception is one of our six mental faculties. If we 
would change our point of view of ourselves, if we 
would look at ourselves a different

way, our whole world will begin to change. When 
we are willing to monitor our perceptions we open 
ourselves to an entirely new, elevated level of being.

We have more power than we realize, let's use it wisely.

Lori A. Harris is a lawyer and coach. She help's mid-
career professionals get more love, creativity, and fun out 
of life. Learn more at 

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