Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, March 6, 2021

MVNews this week:  Page 14

OPINIONMountain View News Saturday, March 6, 2021 14 OPINIONMountain View News Saturday, March 6, 2021 14 




Susan Henderson 


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello 


John Aveny 



Stuart Tolchin 
Audrey SwansonMary 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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Lately, in connection with the letter I am intending 

to write to my one and a half year old granddaughter 

which I hope she will read in about twenty years, I have 

given considerable thought to my own values. I have 

asked for suggestions from long kept and valued friends 

and have gone so far as to actually borrow a book from 

another friend. The book is one that he just had lying 

around entitled “Philosophy of Mind.” I struggled through 

the book and am now certain that I understand very little 

about this vast subject which includes discussions about 

what is the nature of consciousness? Does all knowledge 

come through the senses? Or are some ideas innate? Am 

I the same person I was as a baby leading to the question 

of whether my granddaughter will be the same wonderful person at the age twenty 
years that she is now at the age of twenty months. Are we free to choose how we act 
or are actions pre-determined by physical, neural, and sociological causes. If it is all 
predetermined should we be held formally responsible for what we do? Fair or not, 
the answer is Yes! 

Yesterday, after thinking about this stuff I identified certain principles which I 
believed appropriate to convey to my granddaughter. First I believe it is important to 
develop good friendships and cherish these people. I believe it is important to freely 
tell stories to one another and to relish stories about one another childhoods, parents, 
and grandparents. It is important to be curious and creative and of equal importance 
to everything is to sleep on a good mattress and get enough sleep. I admit that I am 
not a good sleeper and spend a great deal of time awake in bed when it would be 
preferable for my health and disposition to be asleep. 

Of late, I have found a fairly acceptable solution to my undesired late night 
wakefulness. I have regularly applied myself, soon after midnight, to a continual 
attempt to reach the Genius level of the New York Times Spelling Bee. Last night, 
feeling myself a failure l I actually fell asleep until almost 3:00 A.M. Perhaps you can 
guess what happened as it is really not that unusual. I awoke with an unfamiliar word 
in my head; for the record, the word was “flagella”. Never heard of it, right? Me either! 
Anyway, hooray, I was a “Genius “again. I was elated, relaxed, and spread my arms 
and realized there was someone or something in bed with me. 

No it wasn’t my wife. In my late seventies it has become preferable to maintain 
separate bedrooms. Anyway, this other occupant was tiny and furry and I realized 
that for the moment I had forgotten that earlier in the day connected to thoughts 
about what was important, my son and I had gone to the Priceless Pet Orphanage and, 
on our own had adopted a dog contrary to the wishes of my wife who emphasized 
that she would have nothing to do with the dog and his maintenance would be totally 
my responsibility. I brought the dog home, who immediately seemed to prefer my 
wife, but pursuant to our agreement brought the dog upstairs with a comfortable 
blanket so he could sleep on the floor of my room or on the recliner. When I realized 
he was there cuddled against me at 3:00 A.M. I told him to get down and to sit 
and he immediately followed instructions. I told myself the story that based on 
his understanding of human command he was obviously a trained dog, someone’s 
precious pet who had been abandoned and then rescued. I told myself the story that 
he had belonged to some older person who had been hospitalized by the Covid virus 
and probably perished leaving the dog abandoned. I became completely depressed 
and remained so for hours. 

I called the adoption rescue shelter this morning hoping to learn a little of the 
dog’s history and they knew little. Meanwhile, of course, my wife and the dog have 
bonded. I think the point of this whole article about thinking is that no matter what 
we think will happen something else always occurs and we all do our best just to 
attempt to understand. 

At least that’s what I think l think. 



Get this: A study by McGill University has found that more money 
does not necessarily make people in low-income countries 

I like more money as much as the next guy, but that does not 
surprise me. 

People in developing countries like Bangladesh may not have 
high incomes and own lots of nice mate-rial things, but they do 

have an abundance of two key sources of happiness: More contact with family and 

McGill’s study backs me up. 

Sara Minarro, the lead author, says in that the people interviewed reported 
that what was responsible for making them happy was the greater proportion of time 
they spent with their families and in contact with nature (many of the people interviewed 
were fisherman). 

As Chris Barrington-Leigh, a professor in McGill’s Bieler School of the Environment, 
explained, “When people are comfortable, safe, and free to enjoy life within a strong 
community, they are happy – re-gardless of whether or not they are making any money.” 

A number of recent studies have come to a very similar conclusion. 

A 2017 study by the University of British Columbia found that spending money to buy 
free time, such as paying others to cook or clean for you, does improve happiness, leave 
you feeling less stressed and generally more satisfied with life. 

Beyond that, however, money does not necessarily make us happier. 

According to Time magazine, Dan Gilbert, a Harvard University psychology professor 
and the author of “Stumbling on Happiness,” believes that having money has some 
obvious benefits but also limitations. 

“Once you get basic human needs met,” Gilbert says, “a lot more money doesn’t make 
a lot more happiness.” 

Research shows, reports Time, that “going from earning less than $20,000 a year to 
making more than $50,000 makes you twice as likely to be happy, yet the payoff for 
then surpassing $90,000 is slight.” 

In other words, once you have enough money to pay your bills and enjoy going out 
to dinner now and then, additional increases in wealth do not necessarily correspond 
with greater happiness – or, as one of the academic studies called it, “greater life 

I remember talking with elderly family members, no longer with us, at a family gathering 
a few years ago. 

They told me stories about growing up in Pittsburgh during the Great Depression. 
They had no money at all – but had no idea they were poor. 

Their neighborhood was rich with humanity – kindly old characters, people watching 
out for them and lots of friends to play with. 

They said it took forever to walk to the store and back because so many people stopped 
them to say hello. 

They told me they felt sorry for kids today who have so much material wealth but will 
never know the deep connections they had with so many neighbors and friends when 
they were growing up. But we know all this. 

We all know that the happiest moments in our own lives involve friends and family. 

These are the people who affect the deeper part of our nature, our spirits and souls, 
where true hap-piness resides. 

These are the people who can make us laugh so hard our guts hurt – or who are there 
to help us when we’re down and out and in need of advice or just someone to talk to. 

Yet too many of us today spend most of our waking hours not nurturing our friends 
and families but chasing success and money and a bigger house. 

Sadly, we don’t experience the “life satisfaction” that people in some of the poorest 
countries on Earth enjoy every day – as the true happiness that is right under our noses 
eludes us. 

Tom Purcell, author of “Misadventures of a 1970’s Childhood,” a humorous memoir available at ama-zon. 
com, is a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review humor columnist 




The basketball game ended. Then, something happened 
that I haven’t seen. 

Every member of the winning team stood and cheered the 
players they had just defeated; six mem-bers of the Asbury 
University women’s basketball team. There were only six 
Asbury players in uniform to laud. The rest of the team was 
in COVID quarantine. 

The standing ovation was an acknowledgement by the winners, 
from West Virginia Tech, that they had just witnessed 
something unusual, something heroic. This was more than 
a ceremonial handshake or fist bump. This was a tribute to 
the extraordinary. 

Tech took the last shot in a 72-72 game, a desperate three-pointer as the buzzer blared. It 
was perfect. The Tech players mobbed the shooter at midcourt. But as the defeated As-
bury players left the floor, most of them in tears, the winning team and the crowd stood 
as one, in appreciation for six young women who had given every bit of themselves for 
each other and for those who weren’t here. 

This is a good story and one that needs telling because you probably haven’t heard about 
it. Nor will you. It isn’t big enough. Small-college basketball. It wasn’t on TV and no one 
will be discussing it on sports talk radio tomorrow. But it happened. 

The sports-as-a-metaphor-for-life theme is overused. But if there’s a better example of 
what a hand-ful of young people are capable of when their greatest attributes are faith 
and commitment, I haven’t seen it, at least not in person. 

On a rainy Saturday afternoon in Wilmore, KY, on Asbury’s campus, the Lady Eagles 
basketball took the floor in a River States Conference semifinal against a powerful West 
Virginia Tech team. The Eagles consisted of one senior starter and five freshmen. The remaining 
starters and leading scorers weren’t in the building. The purple and gray jerseys 
of those not here were draped over their seats on the bench. 

With the same six players in uniform, the Eagles had already stunned a good Oakland 
City University (Indiana) team two days earlier, winning by 10 in the conference quarterfinal. 
It was the story of the year, at least so far. The conference had asked the Eagles if 
they even wanted to play the game. 

“Not playing never entered our minds,” Eagles head coach Chad Mayes said. 

But Tech would be a much taller order. A better team with its full roster of players against 
an Eagles team which would, once again, start four true freshmen, two of whom saw 
very little playing time dur-ing the season. It seemed only a matter of time before the 
upstarts would run out of gas and hit a wall. Truth is, it would have surprised no one had 
the Eagles lost by 25 – no one except the Eagles players themselves, who were unfazed 
by their circumstances. 

Every time it looked as if Tech was ready to take control, the Eagles found a reserve, even 
taking an eight-point lead in the second half. This was Miracle, Hoosiers and Karate Kid 
in the making before our eyes. 

Back and forth they went, as the lead changed hands multiple times in 40 minutes. With 
53 seconds remaining, that game was tied at 72. 

The Eagles had a chance to take the lead but barely missed a driving layup attempt that 
rolled around the rim and out. Tech would hold for one last shot. 

With time running out and nowhere to go, a Tech player launched a three-pointer that 
seemed to rest, temporarily, on a shelf in midair. And down it went. 

As the Tech players piled on one another at midcourt, there stood Asbury’s six – freshmen 
Kayla Har-low, Spencer Harvey, Trinity Shearer, Paige Taylor, Emma Strunk and 
senior Kelsey Johnson – drained, staring in disbelief at the scoreboard. 

No, this wasn’t Hoosiers. Rocky, maybe, but not Hoosiers. And then it became something 
even better. 

As the Tech players stood and applauded the six Eagles as they left the floor, I couldn’t 
help but think of what those who weren’t here, in this central Kentucky gym on Saturday, 
were missing. 

It was perseverance in purple and gray. No excuses, no hesitation. It was mutual respect 
between ri-vals; a deep appreciation for one another, even those on the other side. It was 
selflessness embodied and a willingness to sacrifice, body and soul, for teammates. 

A good story indeed. The heroes just happened to be basketball players. 

Rich Manieri is a Philadelphia-born journalist and author. He is currently a professor of 
journalism at Asbury University in Kentucky. 

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