Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, May 14, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 14

14 Mountain Views-News Saturday, May 14, 2022 OPINION 14 Mountain Views-News Saturday, May 14, 2022 OPINION 




Susan Henderson 


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello 


John Aveny 


Peter Lamendola 


Stuart Tolchin 
Audrey SwansonMeghan MalooleyMary Lou CaldwellKevin McGuire 
Chris Leclerc 
Bob Eklund 
Howard HaysPaul CarpenterKim Clymer-KelleyChristopher NyergesPeter Dills 
Rich Johnson 
Lori Ann Harris 
Rev. James SnyderKatie HopkinsDeanne Davis 
Despina ArouzmanJeff Brown 
Marc Garlett 
Keely TotenDan Golden 
Rebecca WrightHail Hamilton 
Joan Schmidt 
LaQuetta Shamblee 

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About the first television show I can remember seeing 

was called Life Begins at 80. There were only three stations 

then in the early 1950’s and the program seemed to be on all 

of them On the show there were these old time ancient people 

talking about playing tennis and square dancing and having all 
sorts of fun, at least that’s what I remember but, for all I know, they were all lying. Nevertheless, 
I hope some of what they were saying has stood the test of time and is still true 
today. As of my recent birthday last month I am now 78 and frankly am not having a 
great time. 

You probably are not interested in listening to me complain and that’s part of the 
problem. Nobody is very interested in listening to anyone else, especially me. We have 
lost the habit of give and take conversations or dialogues. It is so much easier to text or 
email where you only say what you want to say and don’t have to listen to anyone else. 
Even when I have telephone conversations the person on the other side will tell me to 
shut up so that they can make their point. Realistically this is hard for me because my 
hearing loss is pretty great and I can’t seem to use my hearing aids effectively. In fact they 
often tend to make things worse. 

Another problem is that with the hearing aids the sound seems to cut on and off 
and I never know if I am being heard or if the other person’s phone speaker is turned 
on so it’s very possible that the private conversation is being overheard by persons who 
you don’t want to hear it. Worse yet I never know how much attention the other person 
is paying to our conversation. Often I hear their television on in the background 
and of course my TV is still on so often I cannot understand anything. I have omitted 
talking about another fairly common personal problem. Older men frequently experience 
an urgent need to urinate which cannot be delayed. I admit that I have continued 
conversations while holding the phone in one hand and attempting to direct the flow of 
urine with the other. There are other possible solutions such as sitting upon the toilet 
as I urinate but for reasons unclear to me I am loathe to do this. I fear that my insecure 
need to protect my weakened masculinity by sitting makes this solution unwelcome. I 
wonder if other men face similar problems. Furthermore, I wonder if other men refrain 
from flushing while continuing the conversation for fear that the other person will be 

Perhaps I have already given you too much information. The benefits of this 
communication by e-mail is that I cannot see your facial expression or body language as 
a way of judging your interest—perhaps this is fortunate. I do really miss the opportunity 
to talk face to face with people and to join with them in laughter or the recognition 
that we joined in experiencing something important. For example, today, my wife noticed 
that a dove had built a nest at the corner of our house and she directed me to look 
closely at the bird sitting in the nest. Wordlessly, she directed me to look closely into the 
nest and following her direction I saw an infant bird within the nest. I shared the joy of 
seeing that miniature bird with my wife and as he we held hands and turned toward the 
house we saw a small egg that had shattered on the ground. By being together we could 
share wordlessly our emotions upon seeing the broken egg. You have to be there and our 
present resistance to actually personally share our feelings in the presence of another has 
I believe led to a kind of lost intimacy and loneliness and depression. Maybe we should 
all make omelets together. (Is anyone laughing?) 

Of course, another problem with being 78 is that so many friends have recently 
passed away or are undergoing treatments resulting from falls or cancers or vision and 
hearing loss. Perhaps some are encountering significant cognitive loss but I can’t remember 
and neither can they. Dear reader, even if you are only imagined and perhaps 
non-existent, I really appreciate your presence. Maybe when and if I turn eighty life 
will open up and there will be a new beginning. Right now I am so happy to know that 
I could share the experience of the discovery of the broken egg with you and appreciate 
your attention, imagined or not. There’s plenty of other things not to think about. 


We can’t imagine anyone forgetting to celebrate 
Mother’s Day. To those who may have lost consciousness 
last Sunday, my mentor, “Famous,” in

structed me to provide alternative May celebration 
ideas covering the rest of the month. 

May 14 “ National Dance Like a Chicken Day.” I dare you to shake a tail feather 
May 15 “ National Chocolate Chip Day.” Am I the only one that eats 'em straight 
out of the bag? 

May 16 “National Check Your Wipers Day.” I suspect Pepboys is behind this one. 
May 17 “National Pack Rat Day.” And who travels with a pack of rats? 

May 18 “National Cheese Souffle Day.” It ain't easy being cheesy. Oh wait, that's 
a different food. 

May 19 Celebrates “National Devil’s Food Cake Day.” By the way, Prince Harry 
married Meghan Markle on this date in 2017. Then, like Oprah, 
they've been absorbed by Santa Barbara. 

May 20 Observes “International Red Sneakers Day.” The Red Hat Society is oh 
so envious. 

May 21 May be the most important celebration in our universe…“National 
Waitstaff Day.” Dine out this year, leave a GENEROUS tip, encourage 
your server, and be kind and courteous. 

May 22 “International Being You Day.” So…BE YOU! Be curious...
Be adventurous...Be brave. And be alert…cause America needs more 

May 23 “World Turtle Day.” Traditionally a really slow day. 
May 24 “Brothers Day.” Oh brother! It’s also National Escargot Day 
May 25 “National Tap Dance Day.” Star Wars opened on this date in 1977. 

May 26 “National Paper Airplane Day.” In 2012, Guinness World Record was 
set by flying a John Collins designed paper airplane 226 feet, 10 inches 

May 27 National Cellophane Tape Day.” I would have thought cellophane tape 
day would be in December. 

May 28 “National Hamburger Day.” Not to be confused with National 
Cheeseburger day on September 18. 

May 29 “National Paperclip Day.” Perfection since 1889 invention. 
May 30 “National Hole in My Bucket Day” (Hey, we just report this stuff). 
May 31 “World Parrot Day.” Sierra Madre should have a parade for this one. 

(Editor's Note: And of course do not forget Memorial Day which this year will be celebrated 
on the original holiday, May 30th!) 

Finally, there is a guy named Len Mendoza, who, armed with a guitar, and a great voice, 
performs most every Friday and Saturday night at Corfu Restaurant on Sierra Madre 
Blvd. coincidentally in Sierra Madre. 

He is really good (as is the food at Corfu). What is so amazing is he performs without a 
3-ring binder filled with the lyrics and the chords to the songs he sings and plays. It’s like 
performing a trapeze act without a net. 

Len is really good. He usually plays outside on the patio. So, go enjoy a wonderful meal 
at Corfu and Len’s cavalcade of acoustic songs from the 1960’s and 1970’s. 


The Mater Dolorosa Retreat Center is already the stuff of local 
controversy. The notion that 42 McMansions might accrue 
some sort of religious significance from being built upon land 
sold by the Monastery has been a source of much humor. That 
the Monastery has special development rights beyond those actually 
paying taxes in town? Less amusing. 

You might believe that the conflagration over priestly sexual 
abuse of children had ended. It is not so. There remain thousands 
of victims who have yet to surface. In recognition Sacramento 
signed into law a bill called the California Child Victims 
Act in 2019. This extended the statute of limitations for these 
specific crimes by three years. It sunsets in December. 

In order to encourage those remaining persons to come forward, 
a law firm, Jeff Anderson and Associates, launched an 
extensive social media outreach campaign. For this the firm has 
produced a series of short videos identifying offending priests 
and their associations with Los Angeles area Catholic institutions. 
Three deal specifically with accused Passionists affiliated 
with Mater Dolorosa. 

Here are brief descriptions of the 3 Passionist videos, plus YouTube 
URLs you can use to view them. Those doing so will see 
very familiar Sierra Madre sights. 

Accused priest Joseph Stadtfeld: Two young girls accused Fr. 
Stadtfeld of sexual abuse occurring at the Mater Dolorosa Retreat 
Center. Lawsuits were settled in 2007. (

Accused priest John Baptist Ormechea: Also accused of molesting 
minors. As of 2017 Fr. Ormechea was thought to be 
working for the Vatican in Rome. ( 

Accused priest Henry Xavier Vetter: Four survivors came 
forward alleging child sex abuse from 1953 to 1973. He later 
fled to Mexico and vanished. ( 

The purpose of these videos is not to revisit horrors from the 
past. Rather it is to encourage those who were so preyed upon to 
find justice before all opportunities are gone. People now likely 
well into middle age, and might have decided they need to live 
with a terrible secret forever. 

John Crawford 

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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