Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

From the Willamette Athletic Director;

Congratulations on your selection to the Willamette University Athletic Hall of Fame! The Bearcats have an impressive history of accomplishments by our teams and student-athletes and our committee felt as though yours were at the top of that list. We are hopeful that you can join us for the induction ceremony on Friday, October 12th, and stay for some of the other exciting activities that are happening on campus as part of Family Weekend. Here are some additional details with more to come later this week. The ceremony will take place in the Cat Cavern on the second floor of the Putnam University Center on Friday, October 12th. There will be a cocktail reception starting at 6:30 pm with dinner and the program to start at approximately 7:00 pm. We hope to introduce all inductees during halftime of the football game on Saturday, October 13th. The game kicks off at 1:30 pm. All inductees and their families will be invited to a pre-game tailgate inside the stadium.

His job
Foster was director of behavioral health at the Rosebud Indian Health Service Hospital, a 38-bed hospital on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in Rosebud, S.D., an area marked by high unemployment, poverty, and substance abuse. “We are a beautiful place in terms of the hills, trees, grass, rivers, animals, people and culture, but we are a very difficult place in socioeconomic terms,” says Foster. With no psychiatrists on the reservation, Foster and the reservation’s other four psychologists — including his wife, Becky — earned master’s degrees in psychopharmacology to help improve care. By both working and living on the reservation, Foster sees firsthand how his interventions improve people’s quality of life. “I find that very gratifying,” he says.

A welcoming spirit

After the Fosters’ first four children grew up, the couple adopted seven special-needs children. Their oldest son is 40, while their youngest children are 6-year-old twin girls. Balancing work and child-rearing often require Daniel Foster to remind himself to breathe throughout the day. “I feel like a one-legged man at a kickboxing tournament a good deal of the time,” he says.

A handball prodigy

Foster competed as a member of the U.S. National Handball Team, including in the Pan Am and Olympic Games, from 1971 to 1982. Foster, who had played football and basketball in college, for which he is being honored next month, came to handball as a fluke while he was in the Army in the early 1970s: Members of a handball team spied Foster working out one day and invited him to join them. He was a natural. “The coach ended up inviting me to compete in the nationals with the team in New York and we won the national championship,” he says. He has earned several National Gold Medals in handball since, the latest in 2002.

Giving back

Foster decided to become a psychologist when he witnessed how many fellow soldiers suffered psychological wounds much like those American Indians bore from oppression. To contribute to the profession on the national level, Foster is a member of APA’s Committee on Ethnic Minority Affairs and attends the annual meeting of the Society of Indian Psychologists — with all of his young children. Psychology, he believes, is the career he was born for. “I have truly enjoyed listening to and being a part of people’s life narrative,” he says.

Dan Foster is a lifelong friend and an example to me of what we should all aspire to be like. We met in the 8th grade in Council Idaho, a small logging and ranching community. He was the preacher’s kid and I was the new kid with no parents, so we formed a don’t mess with us society and became best friends. Dan, being of kind heart, probably does not remember it that way, but being large for my age, the tough guy of the class and I were having it out, so I needed friends. To be fair, I and this tough guy later became very good friends! I never won any of our fights, but I never gave up and he respected that, so finally decided we should be buddies, way easier that way!

Dan was always more concerned with others than himself, he is someone with whom friendship is an honor! He did not give me permission to post this, as he would have most likely, knowing him, said no! So I just went the hell ahead because some of his classmates might not know about some of his accomplishments. I got most of the information other than the hall of fame info from this website: http://www.apa.org/monitor/2014/06/random.aspx

Let me give you a little history of the two men whose pictures I will post and trip I will be writing about in this article. Also a little bit about me, the author.

10631253_925746124105470_1648637398352103942_o.jpg

860326_593506170678439_290722024_o.jpg

These two pics are of  Jim Mahon, a 17-year-old Marine shipped out to Vietnam in the late 60’s. Yes, I said 17! Not old enough to drink or vote, but old enough to risk dying for his country. I don’t have exact dates, and Jim does not like to talk about it much, but I also joined the Marine Corps May 5, 1969, not long after he did and spent my first leave visiting him in the hospital in Bremerton Washington. He did not look good. He had been blown up by a booby trap, a high explosive device near Danang in the bush! He died twice in the field, but due to a Corpsman’s superhuman efforts was delivered alive ta a hospital and his life was saved. He looked like the victim of multiple shark attacks when I first saw him. Scared me half to death! He eventually, as many other wounds were attempting to heal, lost a right leg that just could not be saved even though valiant efforts were made to do so over many years! I myself served four years in the Corps, did two tours, parts of both were in Danang. However I was an avionics tech working on computer warfare birds, so never left the safety of the airbase at Danang. It was, however, not called Rocket City during that time for no reason! I was inaugurated within my first half hour in the country! I was a Sgt and NCOIC of crews running missions out of Danang and repairing aircraft in Cubi Point in the Philippines. I practically lived on a C-130 Hercules. But I digress.

After a period of adjustment, my lifelong friend Jim, we met freshman year of high school gearing up for football, basically became a professional student after he recovered from his injuries! He has multiple degrees, can teach, owns his own gym, worked with PTSD vets for the VA, and is my hero! He is in Nam looking into teaching English classes as I am writing this. While in college he met Sonny Dee Dam in the early 1980’s, a man born and raised in Vietnam.  He and Jim became close friends and roommates, both going to Boise State in Idaho. During that period of time Jim, always curious about the place he had fought and been wounded but knew so little about wanted to go back and start exploring! Sonny could not go at that time but told Jim his family would sponsor him so off he went.  So here is Jim, still suffering and torn up from wounds received fighting in Nam, going through all kinds of red tape trying to get into a country we did not then officially recognize! Vietnam had no U.S. Embassy back then, so he had to go through our Embassy in Thailand. He was successful after years of work and several trips! He was able to to get Sonny’s sister and children to the States, which was one of the tasks he intended to accomplish when he started his first trips back to Vietnam. He subsequently married the sister, who shall remain nameless for now. They subsequently divorced years later as Jim’s wanderlust and desire to travel was not a desire she shared. I believe they are still friends! During the time he was sharing a domicile with Sonny, his friend was a single parent, and Jim also single with twin boys to support. They shared good times, hard times, but this only strengthened their friendship. Sonny around 1990 moved to California to pursue his career and Jim had a new marriage and instant family, a new language to grasp, so they did not visit or talk much for a few years! After Jim became single again they reconnected. He now lives in Council Idaho with Jim when in the states and he and Jim are not in Vietnam.

This is a recent picture I took of Jim in my front yard. Just before we set off on our motorcycle trip through the Northwest. Jim and I have also shared some adventures over the years. We consider ourselves family and call each other brother! I am only one of many friends, but I consider him to be my best friend! As I said, my hero for many reasons. One of the most determined men I know!

IMG_1267.jpg

Not long before this picture was taken Jim took another trip to Vietnam and the Danang area to see if he could visit places he had been, battles he fought in, bush he had traversed! Of course, it had changed so much over the years that nothing was recognizable, but still a cathartic adventure for him, in my opinion, anyway. One bridge he remembered as a one-lane wooden structure was now a four-lane concrete behemoth as one example! One of the things he mentioned stayed with me. When the people there found out his wounds were received fighting during the conflict, they treated him very well. He met no one holding a grudge, regardless of what side they were on. He had to get used to how things got done there, a kind of barter system with local authorities, but he navigated the whole thing with skill and good humor.

Drinking Coffee.jpg

This is a picture of the 2017 trip last year taken with Sonny and Jim drinking coffee and relaxing in Ho Chi Minh City! [Saigon] Sonny has relatives there, and now that he is retired he spends part of every year in Vietnam, and Jim usually travels with him! The next several pictures are from that same trip, they have not given me the pics from the current trip, but I am told they are forthcoming! I am told if the teaching job in Nam comes through for Jim, they will spend six months there and six months in Council. Sonny says they started talking about these trips 30 years ago! The subjects in the following pictures are Jim Mahon, Sonny Dam, and Lan Thanh. At present Jim and Sonny are checking into the teaching gig and a permanent residence.

The trio.jpgSightseeing.jpgRestuarant.jpg

A little sightseeing with Lan, Jim, and Sonny. Lan Thanh is Sonny’s girlfriend of several years. You will see her in most pics with Sonny and Jim.

Cake time.jpgRestuarant.jpgJim and Lan Thanh.jpg

They all love to eat. These are all from the last trip in 2017.

 

 

This is a video of Jim cycling in Nam, I assume the video was taken by Sonny. this was a 23-mile ride on a hot day. And I complain about my daily treadmill walks! This is current, the video was sent on March 4, 2018. You can see why motorcycles and scooters are so popular. I should be getting more pics of Jim and Sonny’s current trip and will add them and post as soon as they send them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Biblical scholars at the University of Texas, Austin have discovered an oldest known copy of a heretical Christian writing that describes Jesus’ secret teachings to his brother James. The biblical texts, which relate to the First Apocalypse of James, contain information about the heavenly realm and future events, including James’ inevitable death, according to news…

via Researchers Discover Forbidden Texts Of Jesus’ Secret Revelations To His Brother James — Sparkonit

This is in response to a post about how Democrats were originally for slavery and were opposed to civil rights! Well I had to respond, actually a friend asked for my opinion, and she got a little more than she bargained for, I am sure! So here goes! 

If you look at history and the platforms of both parties they have completely switched ideologies since the days of Lincoln. So what used to be the democrats is actually represented by republicans, and vice-versa. It of course is not as simple as just switching names, but the Democratic Party of old does not exist as such anymore, has not probably in our lifetime! So what is claimed is accurate, just not accurate to ascribe those attributes to the current party. The democrats have lots of problems which they need to solve, but if you look at what Republicans are trying to do right now, for example getting rid of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, trying to completely shut down the education and environmental agencies in total, trying to open up open pit mining in the heart of the last remaining natural Salmon fishery, closing down or vastly reducing our park systems and opening them up to mining and oil interests, I cannot see this as in our interest. The premise of the Republican Party is a solid one, but Republicans now in power are not abiding by or even resembling such a premise. I used to be a staunch Republican, but when they became bought and paid for, I had to leave. Not saying there are not bought and paid for Democrats, but way less in my opinion. If you dig into social security, it is income deduction based, does not affect the debt, and would be solvent if left alone and not the Fed piggy bank. But employers, especially large ones, have to match the Soc. Sec. contribution. Now they figure all that in when deciding how much salary to pay an individual, along with 401k matching, health care, vacation time, etc. But that is the driving force to the GOP hatred of this particular program, and in other forms of imagined attacks on their bottom line tend to foment hatred for all healthcare programs! Why after seven or eight years did the Republicans not build their own healthcare bill instead of trying to shove a hastily thrown together bill down our throats in secret to try and fool us into thinking they had our interest at heart! Because they never intended to offer a healthcare plan. They thought we would let them  get rid of the ACA and then they would just ignore cries for a new program until it faded away!  Big business, pharmaceuticals, petroleum companies, and others, all make billions, even trillions in profit, and they need to keep increasing profit or their stockholders get nasty! So that is what is being legislated, not our needs or wants or desires. Politicians get their money for re-election from these sources so you and I do not figure into their machinations in congress anymore. We have always been a socialist democracy. Otherwise there would be no fire, police, emergency response teams, paramedics, interstate highways, and the list goes on. So you have to decide if backing a person who acts like a bully in a grade school sandbox, who lies every single day, tells you exactly what you want to hear but has no intention of actually doing any of it, who changes horses midstream on policy weekly, and who cannot let any slight go no matter how insignificant it is! So he undermines his own secretary, his cabinet members flee in disgust, almost all of his appointments are still empty, he has no takers, despite his blaming democrats or Obama for everything. Tillerson almost left this summer! The buck stops at the Presidents desk, but he does not know that! Sorry for going postal here, but I have a lot of pent up rage at what is going on. I spend long hours reading bills, studying history, and looking at foreign news, even Russian outlets along with British, Irish, etc., to try and get the real picture of our world and our place in it. We are not the jewel of the earth anymore, we are more like a cancer! Education and science are scoffed at right now, and we are going to be sorry for letting those two slip our grasp. We need to start paying attention to science and education again or we are going to fail as a country! Our esteem in the world by our peers has diminished by leaps and bounds. This is not my opinion, it is a fact! You cannot replace a scientist with multiple degrees with a used car salesmen in an agency based on science and expect him to make the right choices for our well being. I am talking about the Environmental Protection Agency, oh and NASA as well! Anyway, I will shut up now, but I was asked!

 

I look at things differently than most folks. But here is my quarter cuz 2 cents won’t do it! The world is overpopulated, people are just not going to give up sex, just is not gonna happen! Our resources are already strained and our planet being too crowded causes most of our pollution. So, what do you do to lower the world’s population? You make birth control and sex education available everywhere to everyone. Now certain religions harp on you to have a dozen or so kids. This was their effort to make more Catholic babies, or Protestant babies, Muslim, Hindu; you see where I am going here! They wanted a majority, so they mandated large families within their respective religious communities. Going to have to get over that! I am not talking abortion, to hot to handle! If you are going to start talking birth control is a killer, well you are a problem that has to be dealt with. I personally do not believe I have any right to tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her own body, so I will leave it at that! We are scheduled to double our population in just a few decades, and your children’s children will be living in chaos! Now some white folks are saying that only white people will hold back on large families and babies of color will overrun us, and eventually we will be a minority! So what! I am already a minority in California and it has not hurt me one bit! I say everyone marry outside your race, so in a few generations everyone has a nice light tan and the race issue goes away! If you notice, mixed race marriages make some really beautiful and bright children! It is like Mother Nature said wow, you have finally quit marrying into the same gene pool, and look at me cook now! I would have said to also marry outside your religion, but I did not want to start another war! However, after a few generations, everyone would have a totally different attitude about religion. I mean, how do you wage war on your spouse or your own grandchildren. I guess waging war on a spouse is not unheard of, but you get my drift!

 

Christmas Letter 2016

Posted: December 14, 2016 in Christmas, Life

 

img_1702

I am sitting at my desk, it is a little after 2am, thinking about a myriad of stray ideas and thoughts. Probably why I am still up. I did go to bed around nine last night, woke up around midnight unable to fall back asleep. I am thinking about going back for my third cup of Joe, so this might be a long night. It is one advantage of retirement. I can make use of the time as I see fit, however my wife does not like it when I nap during the day, which is her time to hang with me!

I was going to say tomorrow is haircut day, but actually it is today! I also ordered some new Wranglers, a new Bullhide belt, have a new grocery order in and accepted which will be delivered sometime after 7 am, so it isn’t like I have not accomplished anything. Oh I also have my daughters present purchased and on the way. As I may include this in my blog I cannot divulge what it is, but it is something substantial I know for a fact she wants! The wife, well as usual I do not have a clue, and no purchase as of yet for her, but It will come, it always does! She always says she does not need anything, never gives me a wish list, even when I tell her that giving presents is what it is all about for me! It is where my joy is, watching someone get a present I got them when I managed to get it right and bring them joy! I am pretty sure I am getting at least a shirt or two, as she started in on me when she noticed I was looking at them myself. She never bitches, so it has to be because she has shirts on order already!

I actually have a lot to be thankful for this year. I myself feel fine, even though I do have a few challenges, as I am 68 now. But I still can walk as far as I want, still ride my motorcycle, I just can’t run very far, and I am carrying too much weight, which I am working on. It will not be part of a new years resolution however, just an attitude adjustment.

Vivian had some challenges this year, she got a little brittle, tripped and fell breaking her arm. Then while still rehabbing the arm, she fell coming down the stairs at the movie theater and broke her hip. The arm just required healing and rehab, but the hip had to be pinned, and she had to spend some time in a rehab hospital to get mobile again before she could come home! However she is moving around well, no walker, still a little stiff at times, but she healed up in record time! So now I need to get her out walking with me. She is too skinny, and I am too fat, so we need to find the middle of the road this year!

I was planning one more motorcycle trip up and down the western coast, then wherever the roads of the northwestern states would take me. However my wife will not share the motorcycle experience with me, so next year we should both be able to take a trip in the SUV and do basically the same thing! I have always wanted to show her all the places I lived in the Riggins and Lucille area, maybe some back roads up through Burgdorf and McCall areas. I will find some shorter motorcycle journeys to fill my need for the wind in my face and the roar of horsepower! I tried a club, but their trips are too regimented for me.

So the daughter was promoted to Principal this year. She is a little younger than most principals, but this school had need of her specialized skills!, she was  an English teacher who also was trained in reading and comprehension difficulties. She is also bi-lingual. She taught college for a short time, but when the school year ended she elected to take a job back with her younger students. It turns out college age students who are having comprehension problems and difficulty making it at that level are not so much suffering any malady, they are just plain lazy! She loves her kids, but thinks she needs to get them at least by junior high level to do the most good! She has been a very successful teacher, and now a Principal. She was an assistant last year, and then she also did the summer session this year as temp Principal. The school then requested her where she had been an assistant the year before as their new Principal.

She just sold her condo and moved into a much larger house with a huge yard. It even has covered RV parking. She has two pitbull mixes she dearly loves, one a rescue from the local pound. They are the most loving dogs I have ever seen, not a mean bone in their bodies. They do bark a lot if you come up to the fence or front door, but I have seen them both hide behind my daughter when people they did not know came in. It takes them about thirty seconds to make friends however, then they will not leave you alone, begging for attention and play time!   My daughter basically bought the house for them!

So Christmas will be a good one this year, I hope that it finds all of my friends in good cheer as well! My thoughts are always with you, and look, no politics!

Merry Christmas

John and Vivian Love

 

A Reblog of A note from Abroad, my favorite travelers. I mainly did this reblog on this trip because I know a lot of teachers and thought they would like it.

 

Sunday, October 30th ~ Floreana Island, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador Day 5 ~ This was our last full day on the ship. Although I enjoyed Floreana, it was my least favorite of the islands we visited on our itinerary. Still a few fun memories, but not the WOW factor we experienced earlier.

via Galapagos Islands ~ Post Office Bay, Champion Islet, Cormorant Point (Floreana Island) — A Note From Abroad