Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, April 9, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 7

Mountain View News Saturday, April 9, 2022 



[Nyerges is an educator and author of many books including “Extreme Simplicity,” 
“How to Survive Anywhere,” and others. Information on his classes and books is 
available at]. 

Human evolution has many metrics by which you can estimate the level to which one has 
evolved. Social norms, religion, and group dynamics all tell us an insightful picture. Perhaps 
one of the most fundamental of human traits is the determine an allegiance to something we 
will call “universal principles.” Once we set upon these ideals, these universal principles, we 
inevitably get to have our ideas challenged, usually in the form of “us” vs. “them.” It plays out 
in various ways. Gangs and mafia play it out in an inviolable devotion to the gang or group 
or family, against all challenges and challengers, even if one of their own is objectively wrong. 
The mafia and gang mentality is that you never ever say anything against one of your own, 
and you definitely don’t go against one of your clan. 

The question, sometimes asked, but usually not, is whether or not the member of your group 
is actually wrong or has actually committed an offense. Should your greatest commitment be 
to a higher principle, or merely the knee-jerk reaction in defense of your own? 

In some Asian religious traditions, there are ceremonies to the ancestors. In some cases, the 
ceremonies have developed a dichotomy: My ancestors (meaning, the ancestors of my family), 
vs. The Ancestors, meaning, all ancestors. Is one right? Is one wrong? 

In “Next of Kin,” Patrick Swayze plays a small town cop who gets involved in a dispute the 
big city mafia. The armies assemble in a local cemetery, the well-armed mafia on one side 
and the country boys on the other, also well armed. Before the shootout begins, one of the 
mafia leaders considers what has brought them all to this fate. The big shootout is about to 
occur because one of the mafia guys did a bad deed, and everyone was about to be brought 
into the battle because of that. The mafia leader turns and dispatches the bad guy on his own 
side. End of story. Guns are holstered and everyone returns home. Resolution with minimal 

The movie “Next of Kin” was first recommended to me by Linda Sheer, a teacher of mine who 
grew up in rural Kentucky. She would tell me that it’s very important that the various groups 
in our society “police their own” so that there need not be outside influence. Sheer decried 
the knee-jerk reaction of too many to “defend my group” at all costs, rather than looking to 
the rightness of the situation. 

Politics in the world is no different. An elevated society seeks to abide by a higher principle, 
and they place those principles above the allegiance to any individual. That means, regardless 
which “side” you place yourself into, those in an elevated society should always strive to 
emulate the highest standards of conduct, personal interactions, ethicality, honesty, etc., in 
the effort to create a better society. That this does not usually occur is obvious in our society. 

I like the phrase “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.” In terms of laws and 
regulations, especially in a “free” society, we don’t need or want rules and regulations that apply 
to one group but not another. This is, for example, why slavery was a bad thing and had 
to be abolished. And it’s why the Second Amendment has to apply to everyone, or it’s not 

Yet, in our society of increasing discontent and division, it’s hard to determine what is right, 
and therefore, what is right for All. It’s a question worth contemplating and finding some 
resolution. It is, by the way, why I refuse to be a member of either the Democratic or the Republican 
party – both have some great theoretical ideas, yet both contain members who are 
clearly liars, crooks, and defenders of “my group,” at whatever cost. 

These are the questions and concerns that keep me up at night. 

The Chef Knows By Peter Dills 
Reader Carol C. got to me just in time, asking for suggestions for wine to pair with her annual 
Easter baked ham. Dottie tells me that she is a traditionalist and that family has been coming 
to her home for almost thirty years. While everyone one loves her cooking skills, she needed 
suggestions for wine, and possibly beer for her new son-in-law. 

A baked ham that has been glazed with 
brown sugar is a tricky matter, but I have 
a couple of suggestions. First, stay clear of 
bold cabernets; the sugars will collide and 
make the cab too citric. I suggest one of my 
all-time favorite blends, Prisoner. Not only 
will this Napa gem go great with the ham, 
it also will go well with your sides of yams, 
rice pudding, and string beans. Sounds like 
a great menu. What time is the party? This 
wine has a deep ruby red color and aromas 
of black cherry and plum. The first taste is 
powerful, and if you have been following my columns, you know I don’t swirl -- I go for a complete 
taste. There’s no need to let this blend sit; it ‘s ready to enjoy with your Easter brunch 
right after opening. This is an absolute favorite of mine, and one of the best blends that I 
have tasted at any price. It’s available at finer liquor stores and wine departments; sale priced 
around $42. 

For less money and still a phenomenal value is the Maddalena Pinot Grigio. As with the Prisoner, 
the Pinot Grigio is an ideal partner for your entrée. This Central Coast award winner 
is perfect for your guests who want something cool and crisp. Guests who might be the “occasional” 
social drinker will think you spent double the amount. It’s available at Whole Foods 
and Bristol Farms. Wine Enthusiast gives it 90 points, and I agree. 

Last but not least, La Fin Du Monde is a Belgium style beer that I first encountered at Vons in 
Pasadena. It is now one of my favorites. 

Email Peter at and follow me on Twitter @KINGOFCUISINE 


Very much adored cats, 
whose loving owner went 
into assisted liv-ing! We 
desperately need an adoption 
or foster for them, born 

 Bevy: Bevy is the gorgeous, 
all black male. He's shy but 
sweet, as you can tell by 
looking at his sweet, trusting 
expression. He is gentle, 

good with cats, dogs and children. He will adapt to any situation.
Bella: Bella is a beautiful tortoiseshell, also very sweet. She looks very content to just sit and chill. 
She is shy, reactive to change, and needs space and time to acclimate to an environment. Ideally, she 
should be the only animal, unless adopted with Bevy. 
Both cats would benefit from fun and happy play sessions. They are neutered/spayed, vaccinated 
with current vet records. Please consider an adoption or foster. Submit application at lifelineforpets.
org. If you can’t adopt or foster, please share with someone who might. Thank you. 

Pet of the Week

 One-year-old Kiki is very friendly and will meowto get your attention! She loves meeting new peopleand will head butt you to ask for petting. Kiki enjoysplaying with her catnip sock and feather wand toy. 
She becomes extra relaxed when being brushed.

 The adoption fee for cats is $100. All cat adoptionsinclude spay or neuter, microchip, and age-appropriatevaccines.

 New adopters will receive a complimentary healthand-
wellness exam from VCA Animal Hospitals, aswell as a goody bag filled with information about howto care for your pet.

 View photos of adoptable pets and schedule an adoption appointment at pasadenahumane. 
org. Adoptions are by appointment only, and new adoption appointments are available everySunday and Wednesday at 10:00 a.m.

 Pets may not be available for adoption and cannot be held for potential adopters by phonecalls or email. 


John Wilkes Booth (1838-1865) was notable on several accounts. He was a successful and 
wealthy actor, and member 
of a celebrated show business 
family (son of Junius 
Brutus Booth and brother 
to Edwin and Junius Jr.). 
One critic called him “the 
handsomest man in America.” 
Walt Whitman called 
him a genius. But this 
Booth would ultimately become 
known as the assassin 
of President Abraham 

In An Evening with 
John Wilkes Booth, you’ll 
get to meet the man and 
learn what he thought and 
what motivated him: his 
rivalry with his more-celebrated 
brother Edwin (who 
was a Unionist); John’s love 
for the South, and his hated of Lincoln. You’ll hear of the initial failed plot to kidnap Lincoln, 
and of the subsequent plans to not only kill Lincoln but also other political and military 
figures as well. You’ll see what happened when Booth begins his flight from retribution after 
his bloody deed and observe the final outcome for Booth when his pursuers find him. 

Stephen Spiegel portrays Booth. His previous stage credits include The Cause My 
Soul (a prequel to Othello), The Journals of Osborne P. Anderson, Blood in the Cat’s Neck, 
Down in Front, and God help us. Recent film credits include Obsessed, Mountain Man, Out 
of the Blue. You may have seen him in one of his 20 national commercials. He trained at 
American Conservatory Theatre. He is a member of the Fierce Backbone Theatre Company. 

Lloyd J. Schwartz is director and co-writer. A man of all media, he wrote for the TV 
series Love, American Style; Alice; The Munsters Today; The A Team, The Love Boat, Baywatch 
and more. As an ABC network executive, he supervised production on Happy Days, 
Laverne and Shirley, What’s Happening and Three’s Company. With his father, TV legend 
Sherwood Schwartz, he co-created Harper Valley P.T.A. Lloyd also produced numerous 
iterations of the Brady Bunch and Gilligan’s Island franchises (created by Sherwood) for 
feature films, television and stage. With his wife Barbara, Lloyd created the long-running 
Storybook Theatre at Theatre West. He has also had 34 produced plays. 

Clinton Case is the co-writer. Case thoroughly researched the life and career of 
Booth, gaining access to area of Ford’s Theatre in Washington not open to the public, as well 
as literally following Booth’s footsteps in the boardinghouses and swamps where he trod. 
Case was an actor and stand-up comedian. He died in February, 2018. 

This show played in 2017 at the Hollywood Fringe Festival and won the Producers’ 
Award. The play also received a nomination for best solo show. 

“Stephen Spiegel is a sexy, smart actor, engaging and commanding.”---Tony Frankel, 
Stage & Cinema 

“Stephen Spiegel’s performance of Booth…Captures both the charm and the madness 
of the man with magnificent aplomb to easily carry away a gold medal.”---Ernest Kearney, 
The Tvolution 

An Evening with John Wilkes Booth is as close as you’ll come to getting “up close and 
personal” to this significant historical figure. 

An Evening with John Wilkes Booth. A show. Written by Lloyd J. Schwartz and Clinton 
Case. Directed by Lloyd J. Schwartz. Produced for Sierra Madre Playhouse by Gary 
Lamb. Starring Stephen Spiegel. At Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra 
Madre, CA 91024. Saturday, April 23, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. Sunday, April 24 at 2:30 p.m. Admission: 
$40. Seniors (65+) $35. Youth (21 and under) $25. Reservations: (626) 355-4318 or go 

Suitable for general audiences. Covid-19 safety protocols will be observed. As of this writing, 
it means that audience members must be masked and will be asked to show proof of vaccination 
(vax card or digital record). 

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