Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, November 18, 2023

MVNews this week:  Page 13



 Mountain Views News Saturday, November 18, 2023 







Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Peter Lamendola


Stuart Tolchin 

Harvey Hyde

Audrey Swanson

Meghan Malooley

Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Dinah Chong Watkins

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

LaQuetta ShambleE




 I have always been clear about hating guns. Really 
it is not just connected with my hatred of war. I 
do hate the idea of war. To me it illustrates the simple 
fact that Homo Sapiens, human beings if you will, are 
currently not a very civilized specie. I think things can 
be different and it is required that people have a clearer 
understanding of what are the causes of war and how 
innocent soldiers are coerced into fighting. World War I was labelled 
as the War to end all Wars and we know how that turned out. The war 
originated in Europe in 1914 and lasted until 1918 and it is estimated that 
there were a total of nine million combatant deaths and 13 million civilian 
deaths as a result of the conflict.

 Can you relate to those numbers? Twenty two million deaths! 
Compare that to the thousands killed by the terrorist bombings of 09/11 
and the many more thousands being killed today connected to the Hamas 
bombing of Israel. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu now justifies the 
continuing Israeli bombing of Gaza as necessary to eliminate all remnant 
of Hamas as being absolutely a matter of self-defense. He argues, perhaps 
correctly, that unless all of the military terrorists that compose Hamas are 
eliminated there were always be further attacks. This seems to me to be 
another fanciful construction of the need for War as a way to end wars. 
My understanding of world history, limited as it is, does not agree with 
that position.


 Even going back to our own Revolutionary War I believe that that 
war with the English colonizers was fought for the benefit of the prospering 
American upper class who resented paying taxes to far-away England 
when they themselves could impose taxes on Americans and benefit from 
“the freedom for democracy” which hardly anyone understood then, and 
has become obvious, huge segments of American voters care little about 
now. So the question remains what are we fighting for and how do we 
stop it? It would seem that education would or should clarify the insanity 
of war. Instead in the United States that I have experienced, there 
was always a call for the young men to be good patriots and go into military 
service in order to protect the rest of us. During the days I attended 
College the faraway Viet Nam War raged over issues I never understood. 
My parents were of the World War II generation and encouraged me to 
register for the Draft and if necessary allow myself to be drafted and in 
my mind probably killed. I believed that in many ways, at least at first, 
they were more concerned with what the neighbors might think than they 
were concerned about my own life.

 Within a remarkably short time much of Public Opinion changed 
and my parents, and my friends’ parents’ position changed. During Law 
School, which I had entered mainly to avoid the Draft, I volunteered to 
work with the National Lawyers Guild and assisted a great many potential 
draftees to avoid conscription. I realized only later that these young men 
were all white and that their parents were generally members of the upper 
middle class who had encouraged their sons to seek out lawyers. Meanwhile, 
non-white kids and less privileged white kids were being drafted to 
fight and potentially die or suffer permanent trauma.

 The willingness of America to assist Israel and to continue sending 
military aid to the Ukraine absolutely sickens me. Way back in 2020 
I wrote that Putin’s incursion into the Ukraine was a recognition of his 
own weakness and that he was simply attempting to strengthen his hold 
on Russia by engaging in this conflict. Very few agreed with me and everyone 
talked about the importance of protecting Democracy. I believe 
that the American position benefits weapon-makers who make huge contributions 
to elected officials. Our present system seems to elect those 
who yearn for power and notoriety or something and have little interest 
in anything but avoiding the loss of their elected office. News media 
must not be allowed to present material that is known to be untrue. Freedom 
of speech was never intended to allow the presentation of knowing 
outright lies. There must be established an independent supervising entity 
that has the responsibility to protect the public from knowing deception. 
It is also of the utmost importance to recognize what disputes are 
really about. That would be a good beginning. 

Ahh Thanksgiving week is upon us.


I wonder if the spirit of Thanksgiving has held on all these years because 
it is essentially illegal to ‘diet’ on Thanksgiving. Or possibly many of us 
are thankful on Thanksgiving because that’s the one day in a year family 
members travel hundreds of miles to be with other family members. And 
we are thankful we see those people only once a year. Who can say?


In any event here are some ponderables to consider around the Thanksgiving table.


The older you get, the tougher it is to lose weight. That’s because by then your body and 
your fat have gotten to be really good friends.


The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a replacement.


Did you ever notice the Roman numerals for forty (40) are XL?


If you can smile when things go wrong, it’s because you have someone else in mind to 

The sole purpose of a child’s middle name is so he or she can tell when he or she is really in 
trouble (Richard Otis!!)


Did you notice when you put the two words ‘the’ and ‘IRS’ together it spells ‘theirs”?


When you are dissatisfied and want to go back to your youth, think of algebra.


One of the many realities no one tells you about aging is that it is a nice change from being 
young. Yeah, being young is beautiful. But being old is comfortable.


Back to Thanksgiving here are a few notable quotes on the subject:


“I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.” Erma Bombeck


“On Thanksgiving Day we acknowledge our dependence.” William Jennings Bryant


“Coexistence…what the farmer does with the turkey – until Thanksgiving.” Mike Connoly


How many turkeys are prepared each Thanksgiving? About 46 million…gobble gobble 
gobble. P.S. No turkey at the first Thanksgiving. Venison, swan, duck and goose, but no 
turkey. Oh and don’t forget lobster, oysters, fish and a little eel. Ewww!


Thanksgiving leftovers led to the invention of TV dinners. It’s true. In 1953 a food produc-
tion company (named Swanson) overestimated how much turkey they were going to sell for 
Thanksgiving. Ended up with 260 tons of leftover frozen turkey. Somebody suggested they 
put the frozen turkey in aluminum trays with veggies and mashed potatoes and wal-la…
the first TV tray frozen dinner. I miss those old aluminum trays. Guess microwaves put an 
end to them.


By the way, Black Friday (day after Thanksgiving) is the busiest day of the year for plumbers. 
50% more calls than on a normal Friday. Chop chop!!


And my home state, Minnesota produces the most turkeys in the country. 40+ million. I’m 
in there somewhere!


Please don’t forget the first video game character to be featured as a massive balloon in the 
Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Twas Sonic the Hedgehog in 1993. He went astray and 
crashed. Yep, tis true.


Finally, the Green Bean Casserole turns 68 in 2023. In case you forgot the Green Bean Casserole 
was invented by Dorcas Reilly a home economist with Campbells Soup. Apparently 
Campbell’s needed to sell more Cream of Mushroom soup. It was originally called “Green 
Bean Bake”. Campbells tells us 40% of Cream of Mushroom soup sales go toward making 
the dish.


Where else do you get this caliber of cutting edge information? If you are a regular reader 
of my column, you should know there are support groups out there working hard to keep 
regular readers of my columns sane…or at least functional in society! (I wonder what that’s 


Anyway, I sure appreciate the opportunity to possibly lighten the load in all of our lives.- 
Dorkus Rich

Mountain Views News 
has been adjudicated as 
a newspaper of General 
Circulation for the County 
of Los Angeles in Court 
Case number GS004724: 
for the City of Sierra 
Madre; in Court Case 
GS005940 and for the 
City of Monrovia in Court 
Case No. GS006989 and 
is published every Saturday 
at 80 W. Sierra Madre 
Blvd., No. 327, Sierra 
Madre, California, 91024. 
All contents are copyrighted 
and may not be 
reproduced without the 
express written consent of 
the publisher. All rights 
reserved. All submissions 
to this newspaper become 
the property of the Mountain 
Views News and may 
be published in part or 

Opinions and views expressed 
by the writers 
printed in this paper do 
not necessarily express 
the views and opinions 
of the publisher or staff 
of the Mountain Views 

Mountain Views News is 
wholly owned by Grace 
Lorraine Publications, 
and reserves the right to 
refuse publication of advertisements 
and other 
materials submitted for 

Letters to the editor and 
correspondence should 
be sent to: 

Mountain Views News

80 W. Sierra Madre Bl. 

Sierra Madre, Ca. 

Phone: 626-355-2737

Fax: 626-609-3285


A member of 

California Newspaper 




The thick ziploc bag held an opaque iceberg of meat. Of 
the myriad species of livestock we had packed neatly in 
the freezer, I was almost sure this unmarked bag contained 
beef. Not a roast or a rack of ribs, something long 
and sausage-like. Snake perhaps? I think I chopped that 
up in the chicken noodle soup last week. Then I remembered, 
it was the Wagyu beef we were given (maybe a year - or two ago). 
Never one to look a gift horse in the mouth, the mystery meat flaand the next 
day we woke up still alive, medical intervention unnecessary. 

Food is the luck of the draw. What better example than the traditional familial 
Thanksgiving. The myth we’re taught is the first Thanksgiving was attended 
by a multitude of guests each contributing a dish in gratitude thus 
the making of the origin story of both Thanksgiving and the Potluck, but in 
reality the Pilgrim host was a inept hand at the stove and no one wanted to 
eat her food.

There’s a rigid canon to the Thanksgiving menu every family ascribes to, 
changes however small - no French’s fried onions on the green beans this 
year, Aunt Karen is now a pescatarian, are hotly negotiated between the 
mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, second and thrice removed cousins. 
Caught in the crossfire is the naive fiancé. 

Iconic dishes are passed down from the elders, the techniques are ardently 
adhered to including the cookware; a bent cake pan, a chipped mixing bowl 
and a pasta roller groaning out for retirement (even in his wheelchair, Uncle 
Don can still pump out No.5 fettuccine). 

Turkey is the centerpiece and mainstay of the holiday. Complicated to prepare, 
it involves a lot of math, calculating the number of days to defrost, the 
cook time based on weight, stuffed, unstuffed, sear high or roast slow. Then 
there’s the bravado in-the-driveway DIY deep fry, have the fire department 
on speed dial. 

What’s ironic is the Wild Turkey is one of the most difficult animals to hunt. 
It’s natural perimeter sensors are military grade and the fortunate Pilgrim 
who brought it to the first Thanksgiving (dooming future generations to 
hours of work and last minute prayers) could have easily caught a wild pig 
instead. Pork chops and applesauce would’ve been so much easier, and less 

As America is a melting pot, so too is its Thanksgiving spread. In my family, 
quick hands got the moist, deep Unami bites of dark meat from the thighs 
and drumsticks while the slow-mo got stuck with the the bland, dry as a 
French’s fried onion crisp breast meat. If only an octo-turkey existed, with 
thighs and legs to go around, there would be no sad faces around the table. 
But even the losers found solace in our rice stuffing. Sticky Jasmine rice from 
the green hills of Thailand, mixed with bits of cured sausage, crunchy water 
chestnuts, and oyster sauce. 

Over at my in-laws, homemade ravioli is king. With a red sauce made from 
the ripest tomatoes from Italy, deli-fresh Italian sausage and a loving touch 
overseen from heaven. Grown men slug it out over second helpings and the 
remaining meatballs. I stand at a safe distance with my lone, unadorned ravioli 
reminiscing about my rice stuffing. While we say Thanksgiving is for family 
and friends, we know amongst the drama, there is food and give thanks 
to the hands that brought it.

Days after our mystery meat dinner, while digging through the freezer for 
our next meal I found a ziploc bag marked “Wagyu”. Hey! Snake never tasted 
so good.

Dinah Chong Watkins column appears every 1st and 3rd Saturday of the 

For more Close Encounters Of The Wrong Kind go to


Mission Statement

The traditions of 
community news-
papers and the 
concerns of our readers 
are this newspaper’s 
top priorities. We 
support a prosperous 
community of well-
informed citizens. We 
hold in high regard the 
values of the exceptional 
quality of life in our 
community, including 
the magnificence of 
our natural resources. 
Integrity will be our guide. 

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