Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, October 23, 2021

MVNews this week:  Page 11



Mountain View News Saturday, October 23, 2021 




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Peter Lamendola


Stuart Tolchin 

Audrey Swanson

Meghan Malooley

Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright

Hail Hamilton

Joan Schmidt




 Up until a few years ago we Sierra Madre 
Canyon dwellers put our trash out on Wednesday 
night, the night before the scheduled Thursday early-
morning trash pick-up. By putting the trash out on 
Wednesday night we avoided the need to get up early 
on Thursday morning in order to have the barrels out 
there before 7: a.m. or whatever time the trash pick-
up would take place. Now this civilized procedure is 
no longer possible because bears roam the streets of 
Sierra Madre in the dark of Wednesday night spreading 
trash all over the street. (Did knowing the proper 
time to hibernate also spill over to knowing what night the trash barrels would 
be out there?) Obviously this unpleasant possibility led to the early Thursday 
morning rush pushing our barrels to their temporary specified position. This 
morning I dutifully pushed the barrels to the street and expected to hear and 
see other neighbors performing similarly. I saw no other neighbors, saw no 
other barrels, and heard no other garage door opening. Fear overcame me. 
Was this not Thursday? Had I forgotten some Federal or Municipal Holiday 
which would have moved the trash pick-up day to Friday? Right now the tension 
is so great that I am going to rush down to the street and see if the trash 
has been picked up, or at least see, if other barrels are visible.

 Whew! We can relax. I am a 77 1/2 year old retiree with actually few 
responsibilities and sadly, I realize that I do not perform these few very well. I 
am now unsure of the day of the week or the date, have trouble remembering 
directions and constantly misplace or lose everything. Starting at the top of 
my now aged body, I have lost my hair, require hearings aids that are either 
misplaced or without batteries, cannot find the right glasses, and generally fail 
to properly clean and attach my denture. Enough already! My advanced age 
has carried with it other problems and my driving ability has become such that 
my wife and daughter have required that I not be allowed to drive when our 
granddaughter is a passenger.

 Like many I have been a hard working person with significant responsibilities 
for at least the last sixty five years. Unfortunately I never had the 
time to develop other interests like gardening, cooking, playing musical instruments, 
painting or the millions of other activities with which others happily 
occupy themselves. My only diversions were reading (which I did for 
hours every day) and watching television. My work as a kind of public-service 
attorney kept me very busy just trying to be of help to people and doing the 
best I could to raise my kids amidst all kinds of emotional turmoil. Well that 
was then and this is now. Now I have few responsibilities and because of eye 
problems and hearing problems I have difficulty reading, watching television 
or having conversations (formerly my favorite pastime.)

 Perhaps this explains my concern that I was confused as to the day and 
that I was wrongly doing one more thing. What this article has helped me to 
understand is why I enjoy this opportunity to not only create an article and 
share it with the world out there. The possibility that this article might be read 
and found not to be a waste of reader’s time is greatly satisfying. As a matter of 
fact so is the realization that today is Thursday and that I have timely submitted 
the article.

 Saturday I will pick up the paper on the newsstand and see my article, 
name, and picture in the paper. After that I will read the article and probably 
wish that I had done a better job. As far as I can tell this combination of satisfaction 
and regret is a pretty common feeling of old folk like me—amazed at 
what we have done and wishing we had done more.

 Think about this on Halloween— perhaps that is the scary question 
that may live in all of us old folk. We’re still around, but for how long, and what 
is fair to expect of ourselves?

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A member of 





It’s very easy these days to say that social media is toxic. 
People act in ways they’d never do in real life, because it 
isn’t real life. They act like feral wolves, because they can. 
The Twitter police don’t carry guns, and their badges are 

In fact, social media is one big imaginary world, and we’re all way too wrapped 
up in things that don’t matter – the opinions expressed by strangers in public.

Last week, Jon Gruden’s life exploded because of some private email exchanges 
that he had between 2011 and 2018 with a colleague. The emails included comments 
that were objectively racist, sexist and homophobic, and it’s hard to figure 
out how to defend them. You really can’t. Gruden doesn’t.

But they were private conversations between two men, and they became public 
because of a wholly separate investigation into another individual suspected 
of wrongdoing. Gruden, who was not the target of that investigation, became 
the victim of what we’ve all seen over the past few years, something I call the 
Twitch Hunt. When the private comments became public, Gruden was essentially 
turned into a non-person. Matt Taibbi had a great column where he 
described Gruden as becoming increasingly invisible, like a ghost evaporating 
into the fetid air. Gone, done, cancelled. He wrote:

“Throwing the door open, I could still see him for a second in outline, like 
Wonder Woman’s Superfriends plane, crouching in my shirt-rack. Then, in a 
flash, he was gone. The shirts fell back into place. All that was left was a voice.

“Is this forever?”

“I’d put your over-under at nine years.”


I have friends who were canceled because someone believed that they’d overstepped 
some social boundaries, boundaries that are now delineated by the 
tech gods and their acolytes. It’s not that Twitter and Facebook make all of 
the rules, but they empower those with animus and hostility toward “this” or 
“that” to crush the inconvenient and non-conforming. Social media creates, 
and it destroys, because it has such immense power to influence the way we see 
the world. In doing so, it effectively changes that world.

You can no longer use certain words, because the Twitter armies will hunt you 
down and take your soul hostage if you do. You can’t express certain dissonant 
views about vaccines and masks, or the Facebook Stasi will sniff you out and 
tag your posts with disclaimers, the social media equivalent of being placed in 
the public stocks.

And if you dared to use racist, sexist or homophobic language with a friend 
in the privacy of your email (which of course was never private) you will be 
sentenced by the Star Chamber years after you transgressed. The sentence will 
be social oblivion.

I was canceled by a newspaper because the Twitter mobs forced the powers 
that be to silence me. So be it, I found another place, another bully pulpit, 
another microphone where more than one voice is permitted to speak. But 
others are not so fortunate. And many, many others who don’t have the money 
and the resources of a guy like Jon Gruden have not only been disappeared like 
a victim of some South American junta. They have been destroyed.

It’s all so ephemeral, and yet deadly. A person who we will never meet, and 
who made some bad comments to someone else we will never meet, is neutralized. 
None of it touches us, but we’re supposed to care.

Meanwhile, real life is happening, and we’re too busy looking at our phones to 
notice. But at least we can mark ourselves “Safe from Jon Gruden.”


Christine Flowers is an attorney and a columnist for the Delaware County 
Daily Times, and can be reached at





Well, the Dodgers are giving their best effort to win 
another World Series. And yet, it has come to my 
attention there are many, many folks who still don’t 
really understand America’s favorite pastime.


This is a game played by two teams, one out, the 
other in. The one that’s in sends players out one at 
a time to see if they can get in before they get out. If 
they get out before they get in, they come in, but it doesn’t count. If they 
get in before they get out, it does count. (with me so far?)


When the ones out get three outs from the ones in, they get in without 
being out, the team that’s out comes in and the team in goes out to get 
those going in out before they get in without being out.


When both teams have been in and out nine times, the game is over. The 
team with the most in without being out before coming in wins unless 
the ones in are equal. In which case, the last ones in go out to get the 
ones in out before they get in without being out.


The game will end when each team has the same number of ins out, but 
one team has more ins without being out before coming in.

There, that should clear baseball up for those of you a bit in the fog regarding 
America’s favorite pastime.


Speaking of fog, how many of you know about Zeno’s paradoxes? Zeno 
of Elea, Greek philosopher living from 490 – 430 BC. Time, space, ink 
and paper considerations preclude us from a thorough comprehensive 
discussion. You are more than welcome to continue the investigation 
and the answer on your own.


Talking about the “arrow in flight” Zeno argued for an arrow aimed and 
fired at a target, to arrive at that target would have to pass the half-way 
point. Sounds reasonable. Where the paradox comes in, is at the half 
way point, another half way point pops up for the remaining distance. 


The argument is the arrow should never be able to arrive at the Bulls Eye 
because the arrow has to pass an infinite number of “half way points”. 
Therefore, for example, Saint Sebastian, a 3rd Century Christian saint, 
martyred by being shot with arrows, must have died of fright.


Don’t spend too much time on this article or pondering Zeno’s paradoxes. 
From Aristotle to Thomas Aquinas, to Bertrand Russell, smart 
people have been wrestling with the puzzle for well over two thousand 

The really smart people are the ones who ignore Zeno. Interestingly, I 
could find no comments on the paradoxes by women. Proof positive 
who is smarter.


I hope this upcoming week finds the Dodgers advancing to the next 
level in the hunt for World Series glory!-Rich

Mountain Views News

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