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 DIRE C TOR Y 

Index...

FEATURE ARTICLES

PUBLISHER David Tingen

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Victoria A Schmidt

EDITOR EMERITUS Alejandro Grattan-Dominguez Tel: (01376) 765 3676, 765 2877 Fax: (01376) 765 3528 Graphic Design Roberto C. Rojas Reyes Diana Parra Morales Special Events Editor Carol D. Bradley Proofreader Sally Asante Theater Critic Michael Warren Book Review Panel Margaret Van Every Margaret Porter Clare Gearhart Roving Correspondent Dr. Lorin Swinehart

Sales Manager Bruce Fraser Carmene Berner ADVERTISING OFFICE Av. Hidalgo # 223, Chapala Mon. thru Fri. 9 am - 5 pm Sat. 9 am - 1 pm Tel. 01 (376) 765 2877, 765 3676 Fax 01 (376) 765 3528 Send all correspondence, subscriptions or advertising to: El Ojo del Lago www.chapala.com elojodellago@gmail.com ojodellago@prodigy.net.mx Ave. Hidalgo 223 (or Apartado 279), 45900 Chapala, Jalisco Tels.: 376 765 3676, Fax 376 765 3528

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COVER STORY

Carol Bowman shares the tranquility of growing up at her family’s Christmas tree farm. But that is shattered when a discovery one morning changes that in “Tranquility in the Pines, Terror in the Birch.” 18 Dr. Lorin Swinehart shares his experiences in “The Healing Power of the Wilderness.” 20 Christina Bennett has fun with her character Anne attempting to see “Beyond the Gate.” 22 “Finding Your Roots: The Life of Pi and I” Humorist Neil McKinnon walks us through a mathematical maze.

Cover by Jeff Dieterich

COLUMNS THIS MONTH

40 “Truthiness In Advertising” by Tom Nussbaum

6 10 12 14 16 32 42 48

44 Catrina Cumpleaños. By M.L. Reed

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24 Susan Greenburg explores “The Beauty of the End.” 26 Bob Drynan shares the story of “Dick Sutton (Unjust Justice)” 36 Chapala Sunrise Rotary Emergency Food Relief Program by Nicci Beninger 37 “A Battle For Survival” by Libby Colterjohn 38 “Giving Thanks in the Middle of the Night, A Memoir” by Don Beaudreau

46 “Word Salad, Part 2” by Sally Assante 50 “When Did Water Become a Department” Daria Hilton 54 “Any House Will Do” Margie Keane share another one of her adventures. 56 “A Ballet Dancer in Russia 1986” by Gabrielle Blair

PRINTING: El Debate El Ojo del Lago aparece los primeros cinco días de cada mes. (Distributed over the first five days of each month) Certificado de Licitud de Título 3693 Certificado de Licitud de Contenido 3117. Reserva al Título de Derechos de Autor 04-2011-103110024300-102 Control 14301. Permisos otorgados por la Secretaría de Gobernación (EXP. 1/432 “88”/5651 de 2 de junio de 1993) y SEP (Reserva 171.94 control 14301) del 15 de enero de 1994. Distribución: Hidalgo 223 Chapala, Jalisco, México. All contents are fully protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without the written consent of El Ojo del Lago. Opinions expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the views of the Publisher or the Editor, nor are we responsible for the claims made by our advertisers. We welcome letters, which should include name, address and telephone number.

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COVER STORY

VOLUME 37 NUMBER 3

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

Editor’s Page Ramblings at the Ranch Bridge at the Lake Vexations and Conundrums Mirror to the Universe The Good Life Lakeside Living Mexican Grace Profiling Tepehua

POETRY AND PROSE 53 Hello by Margie Keane 51 Replaced by Katrina Pontikes


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COLUMNIST

Editor’s Page By Victoria A. Schmidt

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s I write this editorial, the United States is wrapping up an election unlike any in our history. By the time this magazine hits the street, the voting will be over. Thankfully. I remember a time when I looked forward to election results. But I believe there are many readers out there who are sick of talking about, hearing about, and reading about this election. As am I. This election has exposed the dark side of American politics. Yes, there has always been some degree of mud-slinging, but previously unacceptable behavior now seems to have become the norm, the line between fair and foul obliterated. While I used to look forward to browsing through my e-mail, now there isn’t a day that goes by that I’m not inundated with requests for donations—for candidates running for office in states I’ve never even lived in! How, I wonder, did some of these people get my e-mail address? It has reached the point that I’ve begun to click on my e-mail icon with a sense of dread. Although I love the country I was born into, I dislike what it has become. And I point my finger at no one, believing that, much like the coronavirus, an unknown and uncharted strangeness has blanketed

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El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

all of us. Now, it is almost impossible to find out if the information I am reading is correct. Is it true? Is it false? Is it an intentional lie? A conspiracy? Is it dark web? And what about alternative facts? Faux news? Fake news? I read a lot, but my latest reading has been “How to identify fake video, and the difference between fake video and deep fake video. False information and how to spot it.” I want simply to read; I don’t want to have to do an analysis of everything I read. That is the job of journalism’s fourth estate. What has happened is that when it comes to government, no one knows who or what to believe anymore. This is from ALL sides of the political spectrum. Not only have today’s tactics led to confusion, they have also led to the breakdown of trust on so many different levels. People don’t know what to think, what to believe. Even people who are trained critical thinkers shake their heads in frustration. In my mind, there is a big difference between politics and being elected. No matter who “wins” this election, we all lose. Because on the first post-election morning, all the politicians who didn’t win—and even those who did—start running for the next term. No real work of governing is being completed because doing the work they were elected to do always takes a back seat to the next


campaign. Mexico and Canada have a set amount of time candidates can run their campaigns, and that’s it. If I’m not mistaken, it’s 90 days. To me, that is perfect. Also, no work on election day and bars being closed sound like good ideas to me. In my political world, there would be no advertisements in commercial media. And why not put a cap on campaign spending? There’s too much need in our country to throw millions of dollars at a solitary and self-promoting event. Each party could have their own network with 24-hour programming, educating the public on the party policies and proposals. Citizens could watch these channels to help them make informed voting decisions. And candidates could have their websites, too, where there would be no mention of the other candidates other than comparing and contrasting policies. Their children, their spouses, etc., should never be discussed. Only the issues. And finally, popular vote rules. In this day and age there is no reason for voting to be difficult, restricted, or interfered with. Voting should be mandatory. After all, our government is supposed to represent the will of the people. It is supposed to meet the needs of the people, to see that

they can find jobs and support their families, ensuring all Americans live in peace and harmony. Our greatest responsibility is to vote. I am a citizen, but to me the USA is lost. And it is not just that I left it, but I feel as though it has left me. I keep asking the same question over and over again:  What has happened to my country? The people, our citizens, are basically good people. But to see, experience, and watch, I wonder where humanity has gone? I wonder where the spirit of inclusion and welcoming has gone?  If only we and our elected leaders could leave all this acrimony behind and return to the sentiments expressed in the inscription on the Statue of Liberty which once defined us as a country and filled our hearts simultaneously with pride and humility and, not infrequently, our eyes with tears: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempesttossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” Victoria Schmidt

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Tranquility in the Pines, Terror in the Birch By Carol L. Bowman

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he horrific scene, hidden within the grove of River Birch, burned through my twelve-year-old eyes. I couldn’t break the gaze. Transfixed by curiosity, haunted by the image and frozen by fear, I didn’t know what to do. I had to tell someone, but running into a neighbor would never happen because there were none for miles and it would take me a half hour to reach our house on foot. I had been roaming around our 20-acre Christmas tree farm, and made the gruesome discovery at the farthest edge of the property. I searched for a landscape marker so that I could return to this exact spot when help arrived. The first stone arch of

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the Peacock Railroad Bridge that crossed high above the Schuylkill River, lay in a straight line about 50 feet ahead\; a perfect reference point, I thought. I forced my legs to move through the obsolete Schuylkill Union Canal that had been carved out along the river a century ago. My heart throbbed at a pace faster than my sprint, my breath gasped in spurts, and a blistery dry throat made me gag, but the panic pushed me along. Trying to calm the palpitations and make the terror fade, I focused on the images of the childish antics of my two sisters and me hours earlier. Our mid-summer chore had been to pick ripe tomatoes from the endless rows

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planted in the dense clay loam of the canal bed and to polish them free of rain splash and dirt. Bushel baskets of the gleaming red fruit waited to be sold to local restaurants. My father told us, “I want to be able to see the reflection of your pretty faces in their shine. I want them to sparkle.” We had to work the land throughout the year. Christmas tree sales replenished the coffers for only two months. A huge weeping willow had crashed down upon the plants, uprooted in a flash during last night’s violent thunderstorm. The fallen tree with its wispy, delicate branches reaching out from an aged, rugged trunk gave way to a magical playground. We gathered the squashed rounds under the branches, climbed among the weeping limbs and started throwing these soft red balls at one another, splattering our clothes with seeds and red juice. Mom would not be happy. The image of an innocent fruit fight between sisters seemed to soothe the fright. I felt my cheeks burn with every stride and the utter isolation of where we lived shouted at me. Our family had moved to this remote, historic property in 1950. Early on, while exploring every square meter of the acreage, my father taught my older sister and I how to read the terrain to get back to the house. As I ran, breathless, these important lessons became clear. In the distance I could see our farmhouse, with knotted boards, painted a robin’s egg blue. My racing mind darted to the sanctuary of the White Pine forest where I had been just 20 minutes ago. The scent of sweet pungent sap that oozed from breaks in the trees’ straight shafts still lingered on my hands. I recalled playing with the three-inch long dropped needles that carpeted the forest floor, their touch still as silky-soft as lanolin dipped wool and making funny stick figures with the elongated, supple pine cones, smooth scales curling at their tips. I sat where the white-tailed deer had nestled during the night, where a flattened and pressed area

revealed the imprint of their mattress. Light winds whispered through the tree tops making the only sound that penetrated the silence. I tried to recapture that tranquility, but the shattered innocence of my finding reclaimed my thoughts. Reliving the moment, I retraced every detail. I had emerged from the forest onto the canal’s dry channel and looked across the divide into the stand of River Birch, each tree revealing a salmon color beneath its cinnamon curling bark that peeled off in thin sheets like paper. I loved traipsing through these graceful trees, with drooping limbs and double-toothed, triangular-shaped leaves. There was always a crunch beneath my feet. As I scaled the bank into this deciduous forest, an unnatural shadow of a figure moved in the distance. I slowly approached the silhouette and then took not another step, too petrified to move. From one of the River Birch, its upright branch bending from the weight, a man hung. A braided rope pinched his neck tightly, his feet dangled about a foot off the ground, his body swayed eerily in the breeze. I called to him, but only dead silence responded. His flannel plaid shirt drooped loosely from his rigid torso and tattered, Dickey work pants, like my father wore around the farm, rattled around his legs. A gray, felt brimmed hat lay on the ground among twigs and shreds of paper bark. At only 12, I had witnessed the fatal result of a successful suicide. Now the house loomed closer. I picked up my speed, propelled by these resurfaced images. As I sprinted across the yard, I saw my mom, leaning against the door frame for support, speaking to a police officer. A man dressed in a white uniform, like a hospital worker or an ambulance driver lingered off to the side. I raced to tell them my story, but they already knew. The engineer of a freight train that had recently chugged across the Peacock Railroad Bridge had spotted a person hanging in the grove of trees and had reported his sighting to the authorities. I told them what I saw. I thought my part in this was over. I wanted to flee back to my peaceful place among the pines, but one more task lie ahead. The policeman asked me if I could help them, if I could show them the location, if I could endure seeing it again. The officer, my mom and I got into the patrol car. The ambulance followed as we maneuvered the rutted, bumpy canal bed, inching toward the terror in the Birch. Carol L. Bowman


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COLUMNIST

RAMBLINGS FROM THE RANCH By Christina Bennett Give Me the Unadoptables

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he main thing I do as a foster is give the dogs lots of love and teach them to not be afraid of humans. I give each dog a little piece of my heart and they give me a big piece of their hearts in return. The best reward for me as a foster is to see them loaded for their trip to the airport, knowing they will have humans of their own and live wonderful lives.”—Alice Alice volunteers to walk dogs at The Ranch, but she felt like she wasn’t impacting the lives of the dogs. One day Alice wondered, How can I really change a dog’s life? She asked The Ranch to give her dogs that were

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considered unadoptable—too fearful or too feral. Her first was Luda, a wild child who always made a bad impression on potential adopters. That soon changed after Alice’s loving care. Next came Robin. He was so shy that you couldn’t touch him and he wouldn’t even go into Alice’s house. Robin soon became another success story under

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Alice’s kind and caring fostering. Alice’s love and patience has paid off. She helped these dogs bond with people and learn to trust. And, with tears, she watched them leave for their new lives. Crazy Luda is now happy in the Seattle area where she runs on the beach with her new family. Robin went to a veterinary school in Oregon. A student worked with him and Robin now has a family with three children to call his own. Without Alice, these dogs would likely still be living at The Ranch. “Puppy breath is the best.” — Cheryl While Alice has helped hopeless dogs become adoptable, Cheryl is the puppy whisperer. Over the course of a few years, she has fostered well over 100 puppies! The Ranch receives many litters of abandoned puppies every year. Often, they are abandoned without their moms and are too small to enter a shelter environment. Too young to receive their vaccines and too tiny to survive the chilly nights, they would literally die without first having a stay in a warm, loving foster home. Cheryl, a former neonatal nurse, has had up to eight puppies at a time, including some she has had to bottlefeed every three hours (yes, that means at night, too). The pups often arrive malnourished and full of worms, having been rescued from a ditch or from

under an old car. She nurses the sick and skinny ones with food, medicine, warmth, and love. Cheryl would love to see what her puppies look like when they grow up in their forever homes, but alas, once they leave her nest, she rarely hears from them. But you know those sweet dogs remember sleeping on her warm neck or being fed and comforted at 2:00 in the morning. Can you help The Ranch by fostering? Here’s what your time means to all those dogs: A day or two of your time could be the difference between life and death for a puppy who is needing a little TLC A week or two could afford a dog who recently had surgery the opportunity to recover in a warm, quiet environment where he could receive his meds throughout the day. Or a month? It could give a mother of newborn pups an opportunity to raise her family to a point where it’s safe to bring the pups into a shelter environment. The tough part can be letting them go, but the rewards are even greater. Please visit our new website www. theranchchapala.com for more information or email us at adoptaranchdog@outlook.com


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COLUMNIST

BRIDGE BY THE LAKE By Ken Masson

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any duplicate bridge players have adopted Roman Key Card Blackwood (RKCB) as their weapon of choice when investigating slams, and with good reason: it is a vast improvement on the gadget created by Easley Blackwood many decades ago. The original Blackwood convention

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used a bid of 4 no trump to ask for aces and, if the partnership held all four, 5 no trump to ask for kings. This was certainly a help in preventing a pair from bidding a small slam off 2 cashing aces, but was found wanting in locating other cards which could be equally important to actually making a high-level contract. Thus was born RKCB, which adds

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the king of the agreed trump suit to the 4 aces to make 5 “key cards.” It also allows the partnership to investigate if they also hold the queen of trumps and, in some cases, specific kings. It would take up too much space to describe the entire convention here, but if you would like to add this great tool to your arsenal, I would suggest that you visit http://www.bridgebum.com/ roman_key_card_blackwood.php and learn why it has become so popular around the world. We favor the “1430” version. The diagrammed hand was played at the Lake Chapala Duplicate Bridge Club where one pair used RKCB to the max in arriving at an unbeatable grand slam. North dealt and opened 1 diamond to which South responded 1 heart. Although South held 21 high card points she did not feel the need to make a jump shift bid as a new suit by responder at the lowest level is 100 percent forcing by an unpassed hand and there was no need to crowd the bidding. However, when North’s rebid was 2 hearts, South knew that at least a small slam was highly likely so she launched into 4 no trump right away. North’s response of 5 clubs showed one or four keycards, and since South herself held four it wasn’t rocket science to figure out that North held the

diamond ace. But there was still work to do. South’s next bid of 5 diamonds was an extension of RKCB that all users may not be aware of: it asked specifically if North held the queen of the agreed trump suit, hearts. North’s next bid carried two crucial messages: 6 clubs not only confirmed he held her majesty, but also the king of clubs (and by inference, likely shortness in spades). This was all the information South needed to land in the excellent contract of 7 hearts. There was very little to the play. Declarer won the opening lead in dummy with the club king, drew trumps in three rounds, played ace, king of spades and ruffed one spade in dummy and pitched a spade on the diamond king. This was the only pair of 13 who played that hand to bid and make 7 hearts that day. Once again it was shown that high card points alone do not guarantee success in the game of bridge. A good fit between the two hands was the essential feature in ensuring a triumph here. The judicious use of RKCB certainly helped this pair to a great score. Questions or comments: email: masson. ken@gmail.com Ken Masson


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Unmasked

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ife will surprise you, no matter how carefully you try to orchestrate the trajectory of your future. 2020 has morphed from a year in which I was going to have a relaxed, travel-filled experience, to the year I have spent conjuring ways to outrun the COVID-19 plague. After watching what seems like thousands of hours of news shows featuring bespectacled virus and vaccine experts sharing everything

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they have learned in decades of specialization, what I have determined is that we all need to wear masks. We need to wear said masks more than we like to imagine. Some specialists go so far as to wear their masks when outdoors walking or visiting with a friend. Cut to what I witness in my everyday life. I still see too many mouths. However, most people have finally started to receive the mask message and don their face coverings when

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going out. Something caught the public’s attention, because, according to the Pew Research Center, the percentage of people masking in the U.S. went from 65 percent in June to 85 percent in August. Why did people take so long to decide to cover their noses and mouths? Early in the pandemic, the masking messages were mixed. That didn’t help. But finally, masking became a generally accepted message from the medical and scientific communities. I’ve heard, “I don’t like the way they feel, they’re hot.” This excuse insinuates that everyone else loves the way it feels to inhale your own hot breath or have your lip balm spread to your chin. I wish I didn’t have to wear them either. (Oh, red lipstick, how I miss thee!) Some people have claimed mask mandates infringe on their personal freedom. I wonder to myself if they mean their freedom to kill me with coronavirus germs. In our condominium, the battle with the non-maskers has become an issue. The building management decided something had to be done to persuade all tenants to follow the rules. A rather hefty fine was levied against offenders for each day they were spotted with uncovered faces. I heard someone was so adamant not to have the rule, she just paid the fine. I think we need to raise the fine until we hit a financially intolerable threshold, where the act of rebellion comes with a pinch. In a society on pins and needles from pandemic stresses, tempers are on edge. Should a cashier ask a customer to mask up, there is a chance for potential mayhem to ensue. Videos of such encounters are all over social media, one with a “Karen” throwing everything from her shopping basket across the room, one item at a time. I witnessed one situation where a patron was told to leave a store until

he could mask. The person responded, at the checkout, “But I haven’t paid for my things!” The clerk replied, “That won’t be necessary. Leave your basket.” The shopper left, but without an entire basket of goods which had to have taken an hour to accumulate. I have decided that masks are here to stay for a long time. I bought lots of ugly, surgical-looking masks. Then it occurred to me that masking could be a fashion statement. I started searching the Internet for pretty printed masks. I have a mask station in my living room where I can grab the prettiest or most practical mask for the moment. Going to dump trash? Grab that white paper number. Heading to the lobby to check mail? The flowered pink mask says my resilience is doing fine, thank you, to any neighbor I may pass along the way. Meanwhile, my first temptation is to try puritanical shunning of those who refuse to comply with the minimum step to saving lives. If I encounter persons without masks, I could dramatically jump out of their way, to signal my desire to avoid them. Or I could pull my mask down and laugh loudly at them, and they would wonder if they had been infected. Then I heard an excellent interview between two doctors on Facebook, one an expert in infectious disease. The behaviors above would be considered mean and ineffective. I want to be neither of those. I learned that I should be kind and do my part to educate others that data supports masking to reduce illness and fatalities. I will continue to wear my mask. Underneath it, I’ll be clenching my teeth if I encounter an unmasked individual, knowing their behavior may keep this pandemic with us Katina Pontikes a lot longer.


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COLUMNIST

Mirror To The Universe —The Good Life By Rob Mohr “The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge.” —Bertrand Russell

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nowledge and wisdom are acquired through what we learn each time we fail, or, are thrown off course by unexpected events or encounters. Fortunately, wisdom, once acquired, prepares us to see more clearly and anticipate what we will inevitably encounter in the future. Anticipation, seeing optional paths to navigate what lies ahead, is an essential quality in the good life. Fortunately, here at Lakeside, we have time enough so that friends become family that we love and cherish. And where, if we remain alert, we share a rich environment for the accumulation of knowledge. Here, a good life is possible, but only if we have the wisdom to enjoy it.

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A key to the good life was encapsulated in the Delphic motto “know yourself.” When I assess my own life, two basics emerge: I approach everything creatively, while anticipating the future, aware of multiple paths, one of which will enable a quality life. Creativity is essential for life to thrive and develop, and is the catalyst for the evolution of human culture and society.     Think about one of your children, grandchildren, or someone young whom you mentor. What would you like for their future? The same way of life you have, or more? We could start with their being free from fear that reduces flourishing. Free from violence, of no or inadequate health care, of a destroyed

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environment, of no income, no home, no hope. Assurance of a full education, pleasure found in harmony with nature, complete security, and virtue as a psychological habit, would be good starting points. To be treated justly, have a spiritual grounding and enjoy the spiritual dimensions of life, understand the value of friends and family, enjoy the benefits of technology and artificial intelligence, and to live in a world without violence or hate for others. All or most of these possible futures are things we struggle to gain. We fear the loss of income, health care, and our environment. Today, our security is tenuous at best. War and violence are inevitable, economic uncertainty, pandemics without health care are more and more likely. Currently we struggle for virtually all of the benefits that we hope the youth of the world will have. But there is a possible future, one where AI, robotics, and technology will free us for more creative lives, while producing an income adequate to support secure lives for humans. A future where everything that can be automated will be automated. Supercomputers and those who program them will enable profound economic, social, and political

changes that benefit humanity. People will be liberated from hard manual work, or servitude providing comfort for others, will experience a drastic increase of leisure and creative time for all of the arts. Travel will be possible for everyone. Improved full access to health care will increase life expectancy and comfort. Is all of this and more possible? In Denmark, residents no longer fear the future; all of the essentials for a good life are provided equally to everyone. But such a future will require a different, more creative mindset, a vision for a better, healthful, and progressive life. Life is a valuable and wonderfilled gift we all receive. And a good life no longer defined by one’s job title, but rather by creativity, harmony, and freedom from fear has finally become a realistic goal. We should rejoice, but will we? A wise Danish philosopher, Soren Kierkegaard, anticipated the choice we face today when he wrote, “Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.” Might we willingly ensure a good life for generations to come? Rob Mohr


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The Healing Power Of Wilderness Dr. Lorin Swinehart

“Why, who makes much of a miracle? As to me, I know of nothing but miracles.” —Walt Whitman

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nce upon a time, according to the Ojibwe and others who dwelled along the shores of the northern Great Lakes, a fierce forest fire reeked and smoked across the region we now know as Wisconsin. A mother bear, fearing for the safety of her twin cubs, ushered them into the waters of Lake Michigan to begin the 65-mile swim across to safety on the opposite shore. Before they could reach land, the cubs surrendered to exhaustion and sank to the sandy bottom. The mother bear, unaware of their plight, scaled a hill from which she could watch for her two children. After a time, the mother bear became

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the Great Sleeping Bear Dune, and offshore two islands, North Manitou and South Manitou, mark the resting places of the bear cubs. Today, the dune and the two islands are part of the Great Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore, administered by the National Park Service. Some years ago, along with two friends, I toted my 65-pound backpack six miles across North Manitou Island, a wilderness area completely without conveniences. It had been a particularly challenging spring and summer, and I hungered for spiritual healing. David Brower once said that without wilderness the world is a cage. I had been caged for too long, not a physi-

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cal cage but one composed of the expectations and presumptions of others as well as my own all-too-often misdirected idealism. My return to the wilderness was to crack the door open to subsequent adventures in the mountain West, the north woods of Minnesota, the misty Blue Ridge, and other Edens. Wilderness backpacking has never failed to provide a powerful balm for a wounded soul. Lugging a ponderous pack containing all that is necessary for the sustenance of life over a rough trail causes one to live in the moment. Having cast off ahead of time the superfluous, the unnecessary, the burdensome, and reduced one’s possessions to absolute necessities, the backpacker finds himself yearning only for the campsite at the end of the long day’s trek. Backpacking removes a person from his comfort zone and is a liberating experience, given that one’s comfort zone is all too often one’s dead zone. To enter wilderness is to open oneself to the miraculous, and the miraculous will heal the wounded spirit. The first miracle I was to encounter that summer on North Manitou Island was the singing sands. Rubbing your palm over the surface of the sand on a Manitou beach produces a humming sound that is easily heard. It cannot be just any sand. It has to be the singing sands of Manitou. If you were to gaze at the magical sands of Manitou through the lens of a microscope, you would find that they are more rounded in shape than regular sand, lacking sharp, jagged edges. Rubbing one’s hand over the surface causes the sand to shift in planes and vibrate loud enough to be heard. Miracle solved. A reasonable scientific explanation. And yet, a miracle nevertheless. Perhaps even more spectacular was the evening when I first experienced the fabled green flash in the sunset. At the very moment when the sun began to sink beneath the watery rim of the world, a brilliant green flash

illuminated the edge of creation. The flash lasted for less than a second but left me speechless. It is said among the islands of the Caribbean that once you have seen the green flash, good fortune will follow you all the days of your life. As with the singing sands, there is a scientific explanation for the green flash. The atmosphere acts as a huge prism, and I was sitting on that wilderness beach inside that prism. At sunset, the rays of light emanating from the sun hits the atmosphere at an oblique angle and are bent downward. As the sun dips below the horizon, its disc of light is broken down into a series of different colored layers. Dust and water particles and pollutants hinder the light waves streaming toward us, and they go bouncing off. The smaller the wavelength of light. The smaller the particles able to disperse it. So the next available color after the blaze of the sun is green. On that evening, the air itself acted like a giant magnifying glass and gave onlookers the gift of the green flash. And yet no scientific explanation can erase the sense of the miraculous. Submerging oneself in the wilderness opens one’s senses to the beauty and the majesty that always surrounds us. Sleeping out beneath the star-spangled heavens with only the earth for one’s bed, far removed from the curse of manmade light pollution, fosters a sense of awe and oneness unlike any other experience. I wandered down to the wave-tossed beach alone one night and stood in silent wonder as the planet Jupiter cast rays of light across the watery wastes, competing with the moon and the stars. We went to sleep with the sunset and arose at sunrise. When a fierce equinoctial storm came thundering across the waters, we sought shelter, finding joy in the music of the hail stones thumping against our tent flaps. The miraculous is wherever you find it, when you meet a lumbering, pulchritudinous bear on a mountain trail, when you thrill to the howls of a pack of wolves, the drumming of a pileated woodpecker, the songs emanating from a pond teeming with spring peepers, even the rumblings of a summer thunderstorm. I returned from my sojourn with my soul refreshed, prepared to confront new challenges and vowing to seek refuge in wilderness whenever it called to me. Lorin Swinehart


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Behind the Gate By Christina Bennett

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ed kept his gate well tended. Whenever the paint got a little sad looking, he was out there putting on a new coat. If it was dirty, he had the hose at the ready and a bucket of soapy water. And the plants outside the gate? They were always lovely. They were in a cluster of marine-blue pots of various sizes and shapes, short, tall, square, round. He had some well-chosen perennials in them, such as lavender and bee balm, but he supplemented them seasonally with other things. There were noche buena plants at Christmas time and pink impatiens in the spring. Ted was a fixture in the neigh-

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borhood, out tending his plants or washing his gate, his big brown mutt, Buddy, usually lying on the sidewalk watching him. The neighbors never saw Ted’s wife, though. If asked, they would say, “Ted lives in the house with the yellow gate and all the nice plants. With his alleged wife.” They always said “alleged wife” as if it had quotes around it, or sometimes they said “imaginary wife.” Ted talked about his wife occasionally but always in a vague sense. People asked him how she was, knowing he was married. And he’d say, “Pretty good” or “Fine, thanks for asking.”

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

Anne accepted it as her mission to find out about Ted’s wife. And to meet her. She had lived in the house across the street for 17 years, much longer than Ted. At first, she tried inviting them to neighborhood potlucks or happy hours at her house. She liked to entertain on her spacious flagstone patio, guests clinking wineglasses around the central fountain and admiring her roses. Ted would sometimes come to the party, bringing cheese and crackers if it was a potluck and a bottle of chilled Pinot Grigio. He’d happily talk to folks, mostly about gardening or art galleries or tips for newbies about where to shop and who sold the best papayas. When asked about his wife, he’d simply say that she wasn’t able to come this time. When repeated invitations failed, Anne tried another tactic. Unlike most of the gringos on her block, Anne spoke decent Spanish. She decided to talk to Ted’s cleaning lady, who she saw go in and out once a week. She started by just saying hello, introducing herself, asking the lady her name and how she was. The cleaning lady was named Ana, which pleased Anne and prompted her to say “tocaya,” pointing out they had the same name. That was always a way to make an instant friend. Finally, Anne asked after Ted and his wife. They were bien, Ana said. When Anne tried more questions about the wife, Ana clammed up, feigning that she couldn’t understand Anne’s Spanish, shaking her head, and excusing herself. This presented a problem, as Anne prided herself on knowing all of her neighbors. And, more importantly, knowing all of the local gossip. She, Karen, and Virginia had been speculating about Ted’s wife ever since the couple moved in. They saw her on moving day, helping Ted and two other men carry cartons. But as far as Anne knew, that was the last time anyone on the street had seen her. It just wasn’t fair that the woman remain a mystery. Was she an invalid? Ago-

raphobic? A gringa who was afraid that drug cartels lurked around every corner? Or had Ted killed her and disposed of the body? After a time, Anne decided on the direct approach. “I’d really love to meet your wife, Ted. We have a ladies group she might like to join.” “Thanks, but Cindy isn’t much of a joiner,” he said. “Kind of a homebody.” Ted turned back to his plants, Buddy looking up at Anne with curious eyes, thumping his tail. Anne smiled. Cindy! Now she knew the alleged wife’s name. This was progress. “Well,” Anne said. “Maybe Cindy could come for a coffee some morning. I’ve just learned to make brioche and it’s really turning out well.” “Sure, I’ll ask her,” he replied, but he didn’t turn back from his plants. “Though the brioche is a no-go. Cindy’s gluten-free.” Her name AND her food allergies. Anne was getting somewhere. She made her tone extra perky and said, “I do a great gluten -ree almond cake, too. So moist.” “Yes, yes,” Ted muttered, and she could tell she’d overstayed her welcome there at his gate. Using her cane, she picked her way across the cobblestone lane and opened her own gate, dirty and in need of some touch-up paint. She would bake the almond cake and bring it over. They’d have to invite her in then. She’d get in that gate one way or another and find out about this alleged wife Cindy, the glutenfree homebody. Ann enacted her plan the following Saturday, a day that Ted could reliably be found tending his plants. As soon as she spied him and Buddy that morning, she ventured across the street carrying her gluten-free offering on a cheerful red platter. “Ted,” she called out as she was walking across, carefully watching her feet and her cane. “I’ve brought my almond cake for Cindy.” Ted turned, hose in hand. The water splashed at her feet, startling her. As she stumbled and tried to catch herself, the platter with the cake fell onto the cobblestones. Anne braced herself with the cane, but the cake was a total loss. Buddy leapt up to devour it. Ted quickly shut off the hose and shouted, “Oh no! Are you okay?” Just then, the gate opened a bit and a woman in a brightly colored caftan peered out. “Ted, what happened? I heard a crash.” A huge smile came to Anne’s face as she walked toward the gate, her hand outstretched. “Hi, I’m Anne,” she said. “I was just bringing you a cake.”


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FINDING YOUR ROOTS: The Life of pi and i By Neil McKinnon

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uentin Quo Vadis was an elderly squirrel. He wasn’t just an ordinary elderly squirrel. He was an elderly squirrel who was very good at math. At least he used to be good at math. Nowadays, he could barely remember his own name. Usually, he knew that it started with Q but that was as far as he could go. Forgetting didn’t bother him, though, for often his neighbor Melissa, a large sea cucumber who loved to shop, would hail him from her kitchen window as he left his house, “Quo Vadis,” Melissa would call in her tubular voice, “Where are you going?” Then she would laugh at some private joke and slam her window without waiting for an answer. Occasionally, she would test his math skills and ask a second question, “What’s pi to two decimal places?” Quentin knew that Melissa was trying to embarrass him because his memory was failing... and he knew just how to answer without having to remember. “Is that hair-deprived husband of yours around?” he asked. “Why yes. Lester’s taking a bath.” Quentin smiled. Lester was always taking a bath. He was a large, round, bald jellyfish who stayed in the bathtub and liked to croon Croatian Bricklaying Ballads. His voice was not that good so his main talent was making himself larger or smaller by ingesting or expelling wa-

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ter—an activity that Quentin felt was mildly gross. “Tell him to adjust himself until he’s exactly one metre in diameter,” Quentin said. “Then put a tape around him. The distance around Lester will be pi.” “But I want decimal points,” Melissa said. “May I have a small container of donkey sweat?” Quentin replied. Melissa looked puzzled. “What’s that got to do with pi?” “Just count the letters in each word,” Quentin said mysteriously and walked away. Melissa and her questions were the least of his problems. Some days he couldn’t even remember if the square root of 1 was 1 or -1. Occasionally, he couldn’t remember that √1 meant the square root of 1. One day he confided all this to his best friend, Henry, a confused giraffe. On even days Henry wondered if he was actually a tall tree who just thought he was a giraffe. On odd days he wondered if he was really a giraffe who sometimes thought he was a tall tree. On top of this, Henry worried that maybe he was just a thought in another mind—someone else’s idea of a tall tree or a giraffe. Then he wondered in whose mind he might be a thought. All this wondering made Henry even more confused, so he sometimes relaxed by humming Hungar-

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

ian Birdwatching Ballads. But Henry did know about square roots. “You don’t have to remember,” he told Quentin in a lofty voice. “Just multiply them out. 1 x 1 = 1 and -1 x -1 = 1. Therefore they are both the √1. The same is true for the square root of any number—like 2 x 2 = 4 and -2 x -2 = 4, so the √4 = 2 or -2. You don’t have to remember anything. Just be careful with fake numbers.” Quentin flicked his tail—more of a slow wave really—and gave a sigh. He knew there was no such thing as fake numbers. Henry probably meant imaginary numbers. Well, he certainly knew the difference between real and imaginary numbers. A real number is any number that can be found on a number line like 2 or zero or -6. An imaginary number is . . . uh-oh, he couldn’t remember. Now he was in a quandary. (Note to reader: a quandary is not a foundry built in a quarry). What should he do? Then he had an idea. He’d go and talk to his former student Heidi. She never forgot anything. Heidi was a middle-aged mosquito who spent all her spare time playing tennis. She was often disqualified for riding across court on the ball and puncturing her opponent just as he was about to return her serve... or for leaving the tennis court and sucking all the blood out of some spectator who had made the mistake of cheering for her rival. When not playing tennis she liked to go to karaoke bars where she sometimes yodeled a medley of Moroccan Bartending Ballads. Heidi was only too glad to take time out. “Thank God you came,” she said bitingly. “I can’t ride the ball anywhere near him or I’ll die from the smell.” Quentin recognized her opponent, a very fat rabbit with stinky feet known around town as T. Rex. No one knew what the T stood for but the rumor was that it was short for Toxic. T. Rex often supplemented his foot odor and punctuated his on court hops with loud gaseous explosions. He was known as the town’s most odoriferous citizen. To disguise his explosions he sometimes sang

Samoan Barrel Racing Ballads. T. Rex threw down his racket. “If you stop, I win by default,” he said flatulently. “Do you remember what an imaginary number is?” Quentin asked Heidi. “Sure do. An imaginary number is small i.” “I know you’re small,” said Quentin. “And I also know that you’re not an imaginary number.” “No, no, not me,” said Heidi. “You know how a normal square root works, right? Like the √9 = 3. Well, you can take the square root of any positive number or zero, but what happens when you try to take the square root of a negative number? A bunch of alarms will go off in your head, and you say, ‘Hey, I can’t take the square root of a negative number! That doesn’t make sense!’ Well, you’d be sort of right... because when you square any positive or negative number, you get a positive number, so thinking backwards you can’t take the square root of a negative. “But some weird math guys decided they wanted to take the square roots of negative numbers anyway. They made up a new number and called it i. Then they said that √-1 = i. Therefore, i x i = -1. Now, with this new number, you can take the square root of a negative number. For instance, the √-4 is √4 times the √-1, or 2 times i.” “Thank you,” said Quentin. “You’re just about the smartest mosquito I know. Your smelly friend has hopped off, but I think I see trouble coming.” Heidi looked up to see a tiny rat heading straight for them. But this wasn’t any tiny rat. This was a tiny rat named Bernie who used to think and act like a police officer. Now he was a police officer who acted like a rat. Between arrests he liked to belt out Bolivian Butt Scratching Ballads. “I could run you in for practicing bad math,” he told Quentin in a wharfish voice. “Everybody knows you can’t take the square root of -1. “And you,” he turned to Heidi, “I’ve got a desk full of complaints from tennis players with itchy bites.” Quentin explained that small i was the square root of -1. “You just made that up,” Bernie said. “No, I didn’t. It was invented by a bunch of weird math guys.” “Then they made it up.” Quentin nodded. “Maybe they didn’t invent the square root of -1, maybe it was there and they discovered it—but that’s another question.” Quentin walked away, feeling very good, knowing that small i would exist whether he remembered it or not... OR WOULD IT? The End Neil McKinnon


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The Beauty of the End By Susana Greenberg

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t’s like reaching your destination and reliving the adventure and then putting it in your memory bank to be pulled out any time you want. Laughing and smiling at that memory—or wondering how you made it out alive from that adventure. The beauty of hindsight. To have the courage to walk the adventure of the unknown. To walk the path of the end. Conscious dying is not for the faint of heart. It is hard work. It is sad, it is funny, it is a time to live in the moment, to really understand the present. To review your life— the good, bad, ugly, and the pretty. The last adventure of this life: the

beauty of the end. All the social rules are thrown out. You can have cocktails at 9:00 a.m. You can have ice cream whenever you want, even for breakfast. You can stay up all night watching old movies and sleep during the day. You can wear your tiara 24/7 in your pajamas. You can have heart-to-heart talks with people . . . only if you want to. You can call up long-lost friends to say thank you, I love you, or I’m sorry . . . only if you want to. You can get to the polling booth in a wheelchair, if you want to. You can have parties going around you, even if you are sleeping most of the time. You can have your favorite heavy metal music blaring, if you want to. And you can lie quietly holding hands with people and speaking with your touch and eyes. If you want to. You can plan your funeral. You can write your obituary You can, you can, you can. If you want to, if you want to, if you want to. Which to me, is the Beauty of the End. Bio. Susana Greenberg is a retired geriatric nurse practitioner specializing in hospice and palliative care. She escaped the 2017 Sonoma County fires to San Antonio and enjoys riding her motorcycle throughout Mexico. This piece was written spontaneously using the title as a prompt.

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Dick Sutton (Unjust Justice) By Bob Drynan

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n recent years I have made efforts to re-establish contact with the men with whom I served in the Army between 1957 and 1960. In that, with the help of many others, I have been successful. But one lost connection has completely eluded me. For over forty years I have lived with a sense of dereliction about Dick Sutton. Life has many injustices. I believe that Dick Sutton’s story is one that would not occur in the Army today. It is encouraging that we have come so far in racial justice in the past sixty years, and it is only fair to state that the United States Army has led the way in effecting those changes. My connection with Dick began and ended in Germany, in the 318th ASA Battalion, based in Herzogenaurach, Germany. ASA stands for “Army Security Agency,” part of the Army Signal Corps and a military appendage of the NSA. Without describing in detail our mission, the group to which I was assigned was composed of German linguists. Our mission was intelligence related. Most of us were university graduates, or we had completed some advanced education and taken time out to fulfill our obligatory military service. We had two separate chains of command in the 318th, our operational commanders in the intelligence mission and a structure that provided all non-intelligence-related support. The cadre of the latter was not cleared for access to what we did in operations, but still had direct control over us when we were not engaged in operational activities, a strange and not very effective arrangement. Hopefully it has since been rectified. The support elements provided cooks, clerks, police, maintenance and motor pool services, among others. Dick was a private in the motor pool. He was Black. After all these years, I have difficulty recalling exactly how he looked, but impressions remain. About medium height, he was a handsome man. He had a medium build, athletic

physique . . . maybe like a tennis player might look. My most powerful impression of him was his bright wit and his intelligence. On the base we had a Service Club, an arrangement where we could go to play cards or get a snack. It arranged excursions and provided a venue for a German-American Club where we could meet with Germans and make friends. They held bridge and chess tournaments, and Dick learned to play bridge and chess at the club. He was the battalion chess champion and one of our best bridge players. He made friends with a group of us from the German Language Section and we went into town together occasionally. I remember one occasion when a group of us went on a Lakeside picnic, somewhere near Nürnberg. We played bridge on a blanket and drank beer until it was too dark to see the cards. Remember the late 1950s? The integration of the schools in Little Rock had occurred and James Meredith had been matriculated into the University of Mississippi by military force. The Black community in the United States was just beginning to assert its demands for equality of opportunity . . . for desegregation and acceptance. Being from rural Oregon, I had almost no contact with Black people until my first years of college, and then later in the Army. I accepted them pretty much on their own terms with very few preconceived ideas. We had Blacks on the University of Oregon track team where I competed. In the world of athletics, the criteria of acceptance were not based on equality, but on a hierarchy established by performance. The U.S. Army in many ways is a Southern institution. A few years in the Army, and most of us came out with a slight Southern accent that could not be associated with any specific region of the country, but had been acquired as part of military culture. A large share of our NCOs and officers hailed from Southern states. In other words, there was still a so-called redneck culture in the Army at that time. I don’t profess to know how Army culture worked in

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From page 26 the infantry and other line units. Nevertheless, I suspect by that time, that performance was becoming the measure of the man, not color. However, in ASA field units we believed that our support command was composed of officers and NCOs who were primarily rejected by line units. Apparently, such an NCO ran the maintenance section of the motor pool where Dick was assigned. Dick complained that he was always assigned the dirtiest, most unpleasant tasks. Whether this was fact or not, I don’t know. But Dick felt that he was being subjected to deliberate humiliation. The Army is a hierarchical institution. It imposes a segregation (by rank) that is sometimes very demeaning. Most of us who were enlisted and accustomed to being treated with respect (we were college kids!) felt demeaned in the Army. All soldiers gripe. Among ourselves we discussed our resentment, particularly at being ordered about by those we thought of as our intellectual inferiors. Oh, the arrogance of youth! Common enlisted men, NCOs, and officers all used separate mess halls and bathrooms, gathered at separate clubs and lived carefully segregated lives. The reasons are obvious, but the

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segregation to Dick must have seemed doubly offensive to a bright young Black man. He knew he was bright and resented being treated as an inferior by those whom he regarded as beneath his intelligence. With us, Dick had no such problems, because those of us with whom he associated had no strongly preconceived attitudes towards Blacks and treated him as an equal. We respected his intelligence and most importantly, he knew he was our equal! We liked him. Nevertheless, Dick lived in a separate world from ours. On Herzo Base we were the elite. On the base there were linguists in virtually every language associated with Soviet Bloc countries, much more challenging languages to learn than German, but we were the ones who could speak the local language, were employed occasionally as translators for the base command, and, of course, were thought to have better access to the fräuleins . . . a constant obsession with all young soldiers far from home. Dick lived most of his life among the support troops, the guys who did the dirty work. One day as he went through the chow line in the enlisted men’s mess hall, Dick became embroiled in an altercation with one of the cooks. The dispute was taken out onto the parade

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

ground where the matter was in the process of being settled in a manner usually reserved for differences that can’t be resolved by anything other than testosterone. The local base police showed up. They were not trained MPs, but men assigned to the security of the base. Their actions were probably inappropriate, since they arrested Dick and released the mess cook, a white man. Dick was taken to the guardhouse and there he went berserk. He decked the Sergeantof-the-Guard and took a swing at the Officer-of-the-Day before he was subdued. Now he was in deep trouble. And he knew it. As the story circulated, he attempted to take his own life while he was in the detention room. It was said that he attempted to hang himself with his belt, but was pulled down before he succeeded and was stripped to his underwear and again left alone. He made a second attempt with his T-shirt, and was again subdued, this time with a sedative. The word was soon out that Dick was to be tried by General Court Martial. A General Court is empowered to impose the maximum levels of punishment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. I had occasion shortly before the court martial was to take place to run into our company commander in Herzogenaurach under unusual circumstances. We were alone and both were drinking cognac and coffee, and an informal conversation developed. In the forms reserved for military justice, the captain was convening officer for Dick’s court martial. He was the person who would draft the charges for which Dick would be tried. Trying to broach the subject of Dick’s circumstances, I asked him a related question about the UCMJ. His immediate response was that he could arrange a pass from duty to attend Sutton’s trial so I could see how it worked for myself. He stated that he was going to “throw the book at that nigger!” His attempted suicide was not to be taken into account, according to the captain. I thought that was a matter for his defense officer, but decided not to make any comment. I excused myself soon after and left. I did not attend the court martial. The company commander was old Army, World War II and Korea. He had previously been an enlisted man and had obtained a commission along the way. He was about to retire and return to his home state of Georgia. The officer’s corps also had its share of rednecks. Dick was convicted and condemned to six months in the stockade, and given a Bad Conduct Discharge. It might have been worse, but a BCD was the kiss of death (or unemployment) in the civilian world in those days.

When I next saw Dick, it was after he had served his term in the stockade. He had been returned to Herzo Base for shipment to the United States. As it happened, I was also returning home at the same time. I was the senior enlisted man to be transported by train from Nürnberg to Bremerhaven, where we would board a troop ship. I was placed in charge of Dick and the others. Dick was manacled to my wrist, and later to his seat on the train. I was given a pistol to wear. It was unloaded; maybe I was supposed to drop it on his toe if he got out of line. We talked all the way to Bremerhaven, and he described his experience in the stockade. I can’t remember the details of his experience, except for one sexual one that I will not describe. The experience was debasing and brutalizing, but as I look back on it, I have the impression that he somehow had come out of it intact. The sexual experience that he related was laced with humor. It was Black humor, but it was humor. When we arrived in Bremerhaven, I delivered Dick to a naval officer and I never saw or heard from him again. Dick was from Chicago. Every time I have read or heard something about military prisons I have been reminded of Dick. Many times I think of him when I reflect on my years in the military service. In those days, we had what was known as “universal military service.” Our country existed in a hostile world that demanded that all U.S. male citizens should be prepared to serve in war. Unfortunately, there was no provision to deal with those of us who were psychologically unsuited for military service, save military prisons, BCDs, and Dishonorable Discharges. In civilian life, I believe that Dick Sutton had the potential to become a valuable member of society and lead a successful and fruitful life. His conviction and incarceration in the Army, and his subsequent BCD may have destroyed that potential. I pray not. I have always wondered if Dick was able to pull himself together and lead a productive and happy life. He was so bright. He could have accomplished almost anything. Was he able to shed the bitterness of the experience? Did he have a family? Is he alive today? I feel a sense of guilt. We were friends; not really pals, but we had served together. I didn’t get his home address, and I made no effort to establish a basis for future contact. I turned him over to that naval officer, and forgot him . . . No, I didn’t forget him. Bob Drynan


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The Resilience of Our Mexican Friends

By Leah Jewall

From the Ojo Archives

[Ed. Note: With all the natural disasters occurring worldwide, and especially in Canada the USA and Mexico, I thought it to be appropriate to revisit this story.]

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riends from San Ignacio had stopped by for tea. Fifteen minutes later the torrential downpour started, and now two hours later I’m writing this with my bare feet in a puddle of water, listening to the sounds of drumming and chanting floating in my window from my neighbors across the street. My friends had left hurriedly, as I did my best to sop up the water blowing in through the windows and trickling steadily down the walls. When the downpour had subsided, I heard activity and happy, carefree singing in the street; those who had been forced to seek shelter were now making their way home. For many Mexicans the events of the last couple weeks have not been disastrous or life changing; rather they view these natural occurrences as nothing more than an inconvenience. The Mexican people accept natural disasters as a normal part of life, and adjust to the change in rhythm as needed. I asked a friend who lives near a stream in San Ignacio if she had had a problem with flooding. No, she replied calmly, “but the hillside came down on our house.” The damage was significant and she’s talking about it in the same tone of voice she’d use to

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talk about the price of rice in the local market. A neighbor told me he couldn’t find his dog, but he heard he had been seen in San Ignacio. There was no bus service, there were landslides, people were staying off the roads, and so he walked there in the rain. He found his dog, then walked all the way back, joyful that he had located his pet, full of gratitude and without one word of complaint. Now you take the Taquería Cheos. This has to be a prime example of never giving in and never giving up. A good part of the kitchen remains intact, so they moved a few of their red tables across the street outside the car rental business next to a computer place, and they go back and forth to the kitchen, serving their customers. Open for business, no problem. I observed people crossing the bridge in the first few days when the river was still raging just a few feet beneath the broken cement. Young women carrying infants of a few weeks crossed two thin boards to get across without missing a beat. Small children played near the edge, their bikes teetering precariously. Emily Carr, the Canadian artist and writer who spent so much time with the indigenous people of the Pacific west coast, comments on this noncombative harmony with nature in contrast to her own frustration in her book, Klee Wyck, published in 1941. “I’ve learned to defy the element’s meanness towards my canopy, materials, temperament. Indian people and the elements give and take like brothers, accommodating themselves to each others’ ways without complaint. Indians are comfortable everywhere.” When I asked a Mexican friend why he had waded across the river that day when the water was waist high and the current still so strong as it roared to the ocean, he replied, “Because I was in a hurry to get to the other side. You do what you have to do.”


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Carol D. Bradley

Email: cdbradleymex@gmail.com Phone: 33-2506-7525 “The Artist is no other than he who unlearns what he has learned, in order to know himself.” e.e. cummings   Lakeside Living has been weathering the storm of life under COVID-19.  We are learning  to know ourselves and  how our lives have changed and will continue to evolve in what is becoming our new normal; social distancing, mask  wearing,  temperature checks,  hand washing,  or,  should  those  of us who continue to isolate and learn to live our lives on-line, stay home and stay safe.   These remain difficult times for our local venues—restaurants, theaters, musicians, artists—continuing to deal with limited seating and the uncertainty of the steady rise in confirmed cases of COVID-19 bringing on another lockdown.  Charitable  organizations, after an initial outpouring of support, are  now  losing  their fight with the growing need to help vulnerable families. They need your support wherever you can help.  If you can, and using the safety protocols, go out and support venues and restaurants of your choice, your chosen charity, follow your favorite musicians. Leave your positive reviews. They need you. Many will not survive without you.  CDB   The Lake Chapala Society hosts Open Circle every Sunday at 10AM, a popular community gathering in Ajijic, to enjoy a diverse range of presentations.  For more information see their website: opencircleajijic.org.  OPEN CIRCLE NOVEMBER-DECEMBER 6, 2020:  Care will be given to protect the health of all attendees through limited seating distanced  six  feet apart, obligatory use of masks, temperature checks on entry, and hand sanitizers. Because seating will be limited to around 100, a reservation system may be necessary. Chairs will be socially distanced on the LCS south lawn. A raised stage is set up for the speaker.  November 1. A World with Alzheimer’s  Presented by Kassandra King, BA, NHA, RCFE  Kassandra’s presentation will bring new perspective to Alzheimer’s based on observations of how “losing touch” with “agreed-upon reality” can, at times, be a relief for the person experiencing cognitive change. Kassandra’s interest in the geriatric population began as a volunteer at a young age. She enjoys the wisdom of elders and uses her natural abilities to connect with persons who have cognitive impairment. With a BA (University of North Texas) and post-graduate certification in long-term care administration (Texas State University), Kassandra worked as a Kassandra King licensed nursing home administrator at multiple care facilities. As Public Policy and Education Director, Kassandra served at two chapters of the Alzheimer’s Association. The term “new normal” is present throughout the guidance from her published book Getting REAL About Alzheimer’s – Rementia through Engagement, Assistance, and Love (Plainview Press, 2014).  November 8. Your Life Is a Battlefield. Your Weapons: Power, Control, and Domination  Presented by Daniel Acuff  Dr. Acuff will explore how you and the important others in your life use power, control, and domination to win, get ahead, and avoid losing in the game of life. He will analyze each of the weapons that you and others utilize in this battle, and  will show how you also apply your physical body along with intellectual, emotional, social, and ethical powers to gain control. You’ll be surprised to discover how these forces play out consciously and subconsciously in your everyday life.  Dr. Acuff’s Ph.D. is in philosophy, sociology,  and education. He has been a seminar leader, radio talk show host,  and marketing consultant for more than 40 major corporations. He is author of fifteen books including three Daniel Acoff

philosophical/spiritual works of fiction: God Lied–What’s Really Going on Here, The Mysteries of Quan, and Golf and the Zen Master.    November 15. Soldaderas: The Women Warriors of the Mexican Revolution  Presented by Jim Cook  Women played a crucial role in the Mexican Revolution. Although they are often portrayed merely as camp followers of the various armies, they also served as frontline combat troops. As their roles evolved, women proved they could be as fierce in battle as any man. Some even rose to command male regiments. Jim’s presentation will describe this evolution in roles and discuss some of the Revolution’s most famous soldaderas.  Jim Cook received his  bachelor’s  degree in  history and  political  science and his  master’s in  public  administration. After retirement in 2007, he and his wife Carole moved full-time to Mexico. During the following fourteen Jim Cook years, they have traveled throughout the country, photographing people and places while studying Mexico’s complex history. Jim has written extensively about the Mexican Revolution in his photo-journal blog, “Jim and Carole’s Mexico Adventure.”  November 22.  Ayurveda and Aging   Presented by Peter Steven Malakoff  Ayurveda is the oldest medical science in the world, at the root of Tibetan, Chinese, Persian, and Western medicine. According to Ayurveda, “Old age is a disease born of Time.” Our lives reside in the body of Time and our body, like everything that grows, eventually decays and dies.  Buddha said: “Suffering is inevitable,” and he also said, “All suffering is not necessary.” In this way, the disease of  aging is inevitable, but it may be manifested in a timely or untimely,  comfortable or uncomfortable, disease-free or disease-filled manner. Herein lies the Ayurvedic approach to aging... it does not prevent death but prolongs life and health, offering understanding and practical wisdom on how to live our elder years in the best possible way.  Peter Malakoff is a  religious  Studies scholar who Peter Malakoff lived in India for nearly ten years. In 2004 he received his Ayurvedic Sadhana Padavika Diploma from Kalidas Sanskrit University in Nagpur, India.  November 29. Fascinating Stories Behind Mexican Street Names  Presented by David Ellison  David Ellison has long had a debt to pay to Los Niños Heroes, the martyred young cadets who defended Chapultepec Castle in 1847 during the U.S. invasion. A gifted raconteur, Ellison will explain his debt and how he will pay it with his forthcoming book that introduces expats to Mexican history. He will regale the audience with captivating stories from that book-in-progress about some of Mexico’s inspiring heroes and colorful scoundrels, including the “rest of the story” that never makes the textbooks. This is history and her story like you’ve never heard it before.   David Ellison recently retired after 36 years in education.  He was a teacher (history his favorite subject), mentor teacher, David Ellison school administrator, education columnist, and community activist. He was honored as the New Haven Unified and the American Council of School Administrators Region VI Teacher of the Year in 1996.  December 6. Change Your Mind to Change Your Brain  Presented by Richard Clarke  Brain research shows you can grow and change your brain, using its natural plasticity to improve your life. You can slow down aging, rejuvenate your immune system, and be happier, more energetic and fulfilled. Richard will discuss recent research findings, including how areas of the brain grow and change with meditation, including improving the immune system and slowing the aging of Richard Clarke

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the brain, body, and skin. He will also recommend simple ways to start today to slow the effects of aging. Richard Clarke was a Silicon Valley guy who worked for IBM, National Semiconductor, and Teledyne Semiconductor, and founded Western Switching Power and Silicon Valley CRM.  A long-time meditator, he holds meditation training courses and Ramana Maharshi satsangs. He co-leads the LCUUF course “From Age-ing to Sage-ing,” and presented weekly “HOT Science” at LCS. He has published about 20 books and pamphlets, available on his free book download site richard@infinitepie.net   Lake Chapala Duplicate Bridge Club  The Bridge Club recently ran a charity game in honor of Don Ross, who was a long-time Lake Chapala bridge player. Don passed away from complications of dengue fever, and his baritone voice and infectious laugh will be missed by us all. His wife, Janet, asked that we have a charity game for our local Red Cross. We raised 10,750 pesos which was critically needed to help our community.  Below is a photo of Bridge Club  President Louise Morel,  Vice  President Donnie Van  Rooy,  and Member at Large John Betz, presenting the check to Sub Administrator Victor Javier Benitez Puebla. A staff of Red Cross paramedics were also on hand and we applaud them for their dedication and selflessness. They often are the dividing line between life and death. They have saved countless lives but can only do it with the support of people like the  members of the Chapala Bridge Club. Yoly Martinez,  president of the Chapala Red Cross, expressed appreciation and thanks to all of us for our involvement and commitment to the community. 

Tickets: $150 Reservations: barestagetheatre2018@gmail.com  Showtime: 4 p.m.  Box office: opens at 3 p.m. Seats are held till 3:50 p.m.  Located: #261 on the mountain side of the carretera in Riberas del Pilar  across from the Catholic Church.  We will be following all the state’s health guidelines: use of masks,  Sanitizers, and chairs socially distanced. All audience members are required  to wear a mask. Reserve early, seating is limited.  Please Like, Follow and share our Facebook Page:  www.facebook.com/barestagetheatre2018/  Little Lakeside Theatre presents: 

By Norm Foster Directed by Georgette Richmond  Show Dates: November 13-15, 20-22  Cast: Darlene Sherwood as Iris  Tina Dawn Leon as Natalie  Brian Fuqua as Charlie   LLT’s third ART (Ajijic  Reader’s Theatre) show:  Lunenburg   A philosophical comedy about healing and coming to understand oneself. There are lots of laughs, but not through humor that shocks. Rather, it’s subtle comedy that envelops you in its warmth.  Lunenburg has all the laughs of Foster’s best, served up with an extra helping of character and heart.  Play Description – options:   American widow Iris Oulette has inherited a home in Nova Scotia from her recentlydeceased husband. Surprisingly, it is a home Iris knew nothing about. So, she and her best friend Natalie travel up to Lunenburg to see the home and to find out as much as she can about her husband’s mysterious dealings in the lovely coastal village. What follows is a series of twists and turns, love and laughter... and a winsome neighbor named Charlie.  Reviews:  Foster’s writing is smart and funny, his characters engaging, and the laughs are guaranteed. His plays are perennial crowd-pleasers. - (OrilliaMatters.com) 

For more information on this event and all things Bridge at Lakeside:  https://www.bridgewebs.com/lakechapala/ or like their Facebook page: Lake Chapala Duplicate Bridge Club.  Bare Stage Theatre presents . . .  Here on the Flight Path by Norm Foster  Dates: Fri. 27th, Sat. 28th and Sun. 29th  Director: Roseann Wilshere  Set on adjoining balconies in a big city apartment building under a flight path, the play follows John Cummings as he interacts with three women, Fay, Angel, and Gwen, who become his neighbors over a three-and-a-half-year period. Hilarious and, at times, touching.    “The measure of Foster’s  genius, his ability to suck us in with laughter then calmly turn the knife, gives the best of his comic plays a wildly beating heart.”  

L to R - Darlene Sherwood, Brian Fuqua, Tina Dawn Leonard COVID-19 precautions will be in place for all performances with open-air seating in Angel Terrace at LLT; seating for approximately 40 individuals while maintaining a minimum of 6 feet social distancing.    Tickets will be 150 pesos; available by email at tickets@lakesidelittletheatre.com.  Box office sale dates can be found at the LLT Web site –www.lakesidelittletheatre. com.

Cast: L to R, Emily Crocker, Roxanne Rosenblatt, Ed Tasca & Kathleen Morris

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Chapala Sunrise Rotary Emergency Food Relief Program By Nicci Beniger

Rotary members packing despensas at Bravo Theatre.

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ith the onset of COVID-19, it soon became evident that many residents of Lakeside were unable to work and, therefore, unable to provide food for their families. Many organizations set about trying to alleviate this problem, and Chapala Sunrise Rotary was one of them. On April 20, we began with 48 despensas going mainly to the towns along the lake east of Chapala. We were funded at that point by $150,000 pesos from club funds and donations from Canada. We began contacting other supporters north of the border and within a week we had commitments of $500,000 pesos from seven

Rotary Clubs, 17 club members, and 30 other individuals. We now needed to decide who to serve, how to expand, and how to recruit other volunteers to help us. There was the logistics of food purchase, storage, and delivery. What should we put in each despensa? How could we create a safe environment for volunteers who were packing the despensas and those who were delivering them? Each week we purchased and repackaged 65 pounds each of rice, beans, oats, sugar, and cereal, as well as cartons of powdered milk, tomato paste, cooking oil, soap, and fresh vegetables. A big thank-you goes to Bravo Theater which allowed us to store our

goods and use their spacious facility to package our despensas in a safe way. We distributed despensas weekly to needy families in Chapala and nearby villages. However, it was clear that an enormous need for food was growing. Thankfully, so were our donations. We now had $762,000 pesos! However, we did not have the manpower or storage space to expand our own capacity. So we began to look for local partners who were engaged, or wanted to be engaged, in emergency food relief. With that in mind, we partnered with several organizations, including: 1. Tepehua Centro Comunitario – to provide maternal health and nutrition, adding extra vegetables and fruits to the diets of expectant mothers. 2. Love in Action and Hope House – to orphanages that had lost some funding and required help to meet the needs of their children. 3. Mescalo Centro de Adicciones – Lakeside Presbyterian Church had the manpower to deliver the food

Becca Pohl distributing despensas in the villages east of Chapala

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so we provided the funds to feed this center. 4. Poco a Poco – funds to add food to their deliveries lakeside. There were also several small groups that were discovered as we expanded. Our program wrapped up at the end of September, when we have provided just over five months of food relief. We estimate that the funds we raised distributed 380 despensas a week, feeding about 1,900 people weekly. Our club contributed about 1,500 hours of volunteer time during that period. Our efforts could not have been successful without the leadership of Alan and Becca Pohl who drove to Guadalajara weekly to purchase the goods as cheaply as possible and then did the bulk of our distribution to the villages. They worked with individual villagers to assess needs and make sure that food was reaching the most needy. When they found more families, we increased our despensas. Their tireless efforts and skills led to the enormous success of this program. We faced many challenges during this time, not the least of which was receiving money from north of the border and efficiently transferring it through the Mexican banking system. But in the end everything was received. How do we evaluate our successes? We built new relationships and strengthened old ones with many groups and individuals in the community. We built trust with many local villages. We made a massive difference to hundreds of people during an intense time of need. As Rotarians would say, we built goodwill and better friendships. Chapala Sunrise Rotary meets regularly on Thursday mornings at 10 a.m. at Restaurante Palapa Don Juan Acapulquito, in Chapala. Please join us or contact John Gonzales @ johnag1023@ aol.com if you are interested in finding out more about Rotary.


A Battle For Survival By Libby Colterjohn

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he sail up Sturgeon Lake was wonderful. With the wind behind us, we did a steady five to six knots and reached our destination in just over an hour, without ever starting the motor. It was just one long, glorious flight to freedom with only the sounds of the sails and the swish of the water beneath us. It was a Friday evening in late June and the Southern Ontario air was warm and gentle. After a long and stressful week for both of us, nothing was more relaxing than sleeping on board our 25-foot Bayfield, the Jeanie Warren, swaying gently at anchor off O’Connell Island. We had a weekend of family to look forward to, but, for just a few stolen hours, we were on our own. We loved them all dearly but eight grandchildren under the age of seven, and sometimes four or five large dogs, could be a challenge after a busy week! As we anchored in the lee of the island, the sun was slowly sinking towards the horizon, with a promise of a beautiful sunset, and the breeze was dropping. Our timing was perfect. We lay back on the cushions in the cockpit, with a nightcap in hand, and listened to the birds settling for the night and the long, mournful calls of the loons. Suddenly, there was a great splash. About 25 feet from the boat, an osprey dived deeply into the lake. His powerful wings slowly beat the water as he surfaced and then he disappeared below again. We had seen this magnificent sight many times before, but this seemed to be different and we had never been so close. With much splashing the osprey rose little by little until we could see that he had caught a huge old carp in his claws. The fish was so big it was obvious this could be an even fight. The struggle went on as the sun slipped down behind the trees and the sky lit up with a thousand colors. Shadows lengthened over the lake, but we were still able to watch clearly

as this beautiful bird rose again and again, gripping the struggling fish. Occasionally he reached as high as ten or even 15 feet, with tremendous effort in his huge wings, but then collapsed back into the water. We knew he could not release the fish without settling onto something solid, so when he tried to skim across the surface of the lake with the fish still submerged, we realized he was attempting to reach a rock or the beach on the island. We could see that the bird was tiring, and the fish was fighting as hard as ever, twisting around and thrashing its tail. The boat rocked gently with the ripples from the turbulence as we watched, mesmerized. Finally, they both sank below the surface of the water, still entwined in a mutual death. The turmoil continued for a few more moments and then all was still. The colors in the fiery sky faded and night closed in. We sat there without talking, each thinking about what we had seen and mourning the loss of such a beautiful bird. Perhaps, somewhere close by, there were chicks waiting to be fed, as it was June. If only the osprey had chosen a smaller fish; if only, if only . . . This is a true story. Libby Colterjohn

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Giving Thanks In The Middle Of The Night A Memoir

By Don Beaudreau wbeaudreau@ol.com

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elieving my father’s wisdom when he defined “home” as “the place they have to take you in, whether or not they like it” I plopped myself upon the mercies of my paterfamilias and his newly extended family. My mother had died shortly before. In addition to my father and me, the new household consisted of an 89-year-old matriarch, her unmarried 60-something daughter, the daughter’s some-kind-of-a boyfriend who came to visit one night 25 years before and never left, a mute (thank God!) Myna bird, various genetically mutated canines named Leo, Bo Bo, Brownie, and Zsa Zsa, and a bald-headed robin. Granny,

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the daughter, and the boyfriend all lived on the main floor. My father and I lived in the basement. The animals lived anywhere in the house they wanted to, as did an extended family of roaches! And it seemed to me that during my nine-month stay anything breathing in that domicile had her or his own television, almost like everyone living with an extra body part. Certainly, the cacophony of the household was apparent to anyone passing on the street. To say the least, for me the experience was a learning one. For one thing, I learned that I don’t like to live with lots of breathing things, although I might very well like these same things when I see them at the mall, in church, or (as in

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the case of the muted myna and baldheaded robin) on the wing and out-ofdoors! It had been difficult enough for me to have two parents and one brother. In fact, to this day I compare my relationship with my sibling to the one stated by the title of Jean Kerr’s book: My Brother Was an Only Child. So there I was with an extended family that I would not have chosen. But having no money, or any immediate way to make any, I joined the menagerie thankfully, although not particularly joyfully. My space was less rambling than that allowed the animals or insects. Because Granny slept in the bedroom that had been mine when I was a kid, I was relegated to the basement storeroom, although at that point, the entire house was a storeroom. Even the bugs had extra baggage. My new “bedroom” included a dozen or so 1930’s suits which my father hadn’t the heart to part with. They hung here and there from the rafters, like the ghosts of Chicago gangsters. There was an infinity of other articles of used clothing stuffed in whatever space was available – all moldering in the dankness of this subterranean closet I called my “sleeping quarters.” Boxes and barrels of unknown items were precariously stacked up to the ceiling. Because my dad was a self-employed salesman, he stored sundry merchandise here – all waiting to be sold, some of it having waited for years in this cave of miscellany: toy bears now graying from the ageless dust of this prison house, inflatable Santas waiting for the next Christmas, fake jewelry sporting inflated price tags. There was one tiny, stuck window at ground level that I could never open. Plunged into its various cracks were old socks to keep out the winter, although there was just enough visibility for me to see Leo, Bo Bo, Brownie, and Zsa Zsa relieving themselves on those rare occasions when they left their TV soap operas. My bed was an old mattress on top

of one half of an even older Ping-Pong table. I had to climb onto a metal trunk in order to get into bed. Once there, I had to be careful not to hit the pipe directly over me. A deep sleeper (once I’m asleep), neither pipe nor rockets’ red glare can disturb me, so I thought nothing of having a pipe connecting to Granny’s personal toilet just a few inches away from my head. Until one memorable night. It was 3:00 a.m. when people, dogs, birds, roaches and even thieves are asleep – but not Granny. That’s because Granny just had to “go” – if you know what I mean. Maybe Granny had “gone” before at this bewitching hour, but I never had heard her. But this time: whoosh! went the toilet, causing me to bolt upright a la jack-in-the-box whose time had come to spring. Hitting my head on Granny’s metal underbelly (so to speak), I simultaneously collapsed the Ping-Pong table, causing me to cascade into a multitude of inflatable Santas. My yelp woke the dogs who began to yap, thereby doing their duty in warning the neighborhood of an approaching apocalypse. Human noises followed: grunts and “oh-my-Gods” and here and there a “shut up you mutts” coming from a somewhat- relieved Granny. Even the robin screeched her anger at being awakened at a most deadly hour. Still, no word was uttered from Mr. Myna. It was at this point that I realized the only thing I could do was laugh. And I did so uproariously – sitting there in the pitch-blackness, amidst the plastic St. Nicks, with the ghost of Al Capone joining in the merriment. I laughed at how wonderful it was to have any roof over my head where people I did not always understand, but loved nevertheless, shared the same roof. Where we could experience a moment together, a ludicrous piece of eternity in a world which often forgets to be appreciative. I realized in the darkness what it meant to be part of a family. To sometimes be uncomfortable: to hear flushing toilets and barking dogs; to bicker and bellow. To sometimes be quite invigorated: to laugh your way to the stars and share deep moments; to have people around who are trustworthy and respectful of you. Now they all have gone the way of princes and paupers – even the Myna has flown to a distant shore, but that family still lives with me, deep inside and they come alive again whenever I remember them. Family – whatever it means to you – may you and your family serve each other well. Life is too fleeting not to accept family wherever you can find them, even in the middle of the night.


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Truthiness In Advertising By Tom Nussbaum

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onrad Pitzer kicked a puppy! And he wants to represent you in Congress?” a campaign ad claims. A sadeyed cocker spaniel stares from the television screen, begging the viewer to ask, “How horrible is that man?” But I don’t because I realize this is an “attack ad” and I know the truth. On the campaign trail, Pitzer regularly tells the tale of kicking his stuffed doggie, Bow-Wow, in a “terrible twos” temper tantrum. As a result, his parents never let him have a stuffed animal again. “That experience taught me to remain calm and avoid making rash decisions,” he finishes the story. “That is why I would make a fair con-

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gressman.” That ad and that scenario are not real. But it could be real because it is representative of the low-level political campaign ads have reached. There are few Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations regarding content of campaign ads. There may have been negative attack ads when I was young, but they were rare. An understood code of “truth in advertising” existed. Since the 1980s, however, attack ads, disregarding honesty and the humanity of the opponent, have become the norm. “Will a cheater like Landis Derringer be an honest mayor?” poses

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another ad. The woman facing the camera continues. “I had an English Literature class with Derringer in college. And I remember him telling me he hadn’t read all of Thomas Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge and had to rely on CliffsNotes to discuss the novel in class.” An investigation, however, would show that the class syllabus did not include the Hardy novel and the woman accusing Derringer of cheating used CliffsNotes herself for George Orwell’s 1984.” The use of attack ads increased in 2010 with the advent, acceptance, and legalization of independent expenditure committees, Super PACs, and groups like Citizens United. Because these groups are not officially part of candidates’ campaign committees or national parties, they answer to no one. “I have never lied to you. I never will,” states incumbent Blythe Leigh Tannenbaum. “But my opponent continues to deny that one of his campaign workers, a Pablo Gonzales, immigrated illegally from Central America.” Tannenbaum shakes her head. Records show, however, Gonzales, a third-generation U.S. citizen, moved from Kansas—that’s central USA, not Central America—to work on the campaign while his wife completed her PhD at a nearby university. Rather than focusing on a campaign’s own candidate’s strengths, views, plans, and values, attack ads, whether generated by the candidate’s committee or a supportive independent group, target the opposition, highlighting out-of-context quotes, exaggerations, misinformation, and lies about the opponent. Rarely do these ads include party affiliation, counting on a confused, gullible public’s emotional response rather than critically evaluating the ad’s claims or source. The purpose, of course, is to discredit the opposition, dehumanize him or her, and instill fear and distrust into the electorate. Gone are the days when, as “Dragnet’s” Sgt. Joe Friday

said, “Just the facts, ma’am.” By smearing opposing candidates in political ads, campaigns have let the electorate off the hook. Voters shouldn’t need to rely on ads for their information. They could get it by simply following the news, relying on a variety of fair, respected sources, analyzing what they have learned, and remembering. That is the voter’s responsibility. Were the electorate to do this, they would leave campaign admen the simple job of reminding them of their clients’ strengths, values, and ideas. Instead, the public has allowed these conmen to take campaign advertising on a downward spiral. We have reached the point that anything goes in campaign advertisements, that any statement or claim made about the political foe is acceptable, even if it is caked with layered absurdity, like my sense of humor. “My opponent hates policemen and wants them to starve to death,” asserts Bucky Dunbar while scenes from a decades-old, out-of-control Chilean riot flash on the screen. His challenger, Wendell Heffelfinger, whose parents are a policeman and prosecuting attorney, merely wants to reduce police funding by 20 percent, targeting unnecessary highpowered military equipment. On the other hand, Heffelfinger’s ads claim “Dunbar wants the tongues of all protesters cut out and their fingers lopped off,” when all the latter said was, “Looters and destroyers of public property should be arrested.” Dunbar and Heffelfinger might have a point there. Perhaps, political admen, who might be considered looters and destroyers of our public airways, should be arrested. And have their tongues cut out and fingers Tom Nussbaum lopped off.


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COLUMNIST

Mexican Grace This is a regular feature column inspired by the September 15, 2019 Open Circle presentation of stories that manifest “Mexican Grace.” El Ojo is looking for more anecdotes that relate the many encounters, initiated by expats or locals, that exemplify the special forms of mutual giving and receiving that define the Mexican Grace that brought us to this unique paradise--and that keep us here. Please email articles of up to 900 words with a Title and your name at the top to both victoriaAschmidt@gmail.com and loretta.downs@gmail.com. Photos are welcome.

AN OPEN HEART By M. L. Reed

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efore we came to Mexico, my husband and I spoke with an expat who had lived here for a while. We asked her what she liked most about living Lakeside. “The heart of the people!” she re-

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plied, without hesitation. We had been struggling after some challenging setbacks, and ended up moving across the States housesitting for a couple of years. We were at odds about coming down here; he, strongly

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

in favor; my objections weren’t to Mexico, but rather that I was drawn to return to the East Coast, to family and old friends. Figuring I wouldn’t have any peace until I at least tried it, I finally made a decision to check out Mexico. When I did, I told him I was willing to put our struggles about it behind us, and would embrace the adventure with an open heart. Our first night in Mexico, too tired after driving all day to eat in the hotel dining room, we ordered take-out to bring upstairs. It took exceedingly long, even for Mexico, considering we were the only customers. My weary impatience turned to instant delight when I found out why the delay. The chef surprised me by writing Happy Birthday in chocolate icing on a plate with one of the best pieces of chocolate cake I’ve ever had. He made a tiring travel day feel like a real birthday! Then we met Hector, a Yaqui Indian who helped us get a flat tire fixed our second day on the road. I noticed children’s Halloween-themed art on the door of his shop and told him Halloween was my birthday. He pulled out more artwork made by the creator of the crayoned jack-o’lantern. With great pride he showed

me a small cardboard cemetery memorial his grandson made for a school competition for Día de Los Muertos. He entertained me as his worker fixed our tire, for fewer pesos than we expected, and had us on the road with less than an hour delay. Hector said his people had belonged to the land of Sonora for centuries, making a sweeping hand gesture to indicate the area around us. He did not say the land belonged to his people. He said his people belonged to this land; a subtle, yet profound, distinction. Later on we passed a towering statue of a powerful Yaqui Warrior. I understood the heart-swell of Yaqui pride a little more because of Hector’s Grace, and the statue brought a tear to my eye as we drove by. Then there was the four-yearold boy who walked away from his mother in a store to hand me an orange paper heart; we’d only been here two weeks. Did he sense that I needed a little cheer, being so far from my own loved ones? I met his mother’s eyes and we nodded to each other and smiled. More heart connection. That paper heart lifts my spirits still and is a reminder of my pledge to keep my own heart open. My heart was touched again when my husband returned from errands one day with a yellow rose, from one of my favorite merchants. She found out I was grieving a friend’s passing. Her gesture went a long way in lightening my heavy heart. She said it was a “rose for remembrance.” I will never forget her kindness. Perhaps anywhere we travel with our own hearts open, we will find other open hearts, but the Mexican people make it easy. “El Corazón de Los Mexicanos es Muy Hermoso.” The heart of the Mexican people is very beautiful. M. L. Reed


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Catrina Cumpleaños By M.L. Reed

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ust one more “hurrah” before..., I thought; before what, I didn’t know, only that something would shift to make this little hurrah not possible for my next Halloween birthday. I didn’t know it would be a pandemic, but COVID-19 makes the memory of last year’s celebration all the more precious. My plan was inspired by a colorful caftan I’d found in a Riberas thrift store. I discovered later it was a vintage collectible dress by Josefa, said to be the Mother of Mexican Fashion Design. I decided to do something for charity with it, but wanted some photos of myself in it before I let it go. My simple birthday wish was to have my face painted in Day of The Dead makeup, have lunch in Ajijic, then wander aimlessly with my husband getting photos along the way. I had no idea that the heart and soul of the Mexican people would infuse my day with such revelry and joy. The salon where I had my Catrina makeup done was already in a festive mood: everyone in Halloween costumes, a table laden with refreshments, wine at 10 am (not for me, gracias!). The costumed staff surprised me with birthday roses and a chorus of “Feliz Cumpleaños!” My special day was off to a magical start. We headed to a lunch spot two blocks away, but were stopped three times on the way by folks who wanted a photo of “Catrina” in my colorful caftan, face paint, and floral crown. After we ordered our meal, I headed to the baño. As I passed the open-air kitchen, several Mexican workers paused to smile and give me a thumbs-up. The señora who owned the place asked for a photo. I obliged, then told her about Josefa Ibarra, and that besides celebrating my Halloween

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birthday, I was honoring her memory by wearing her creation. She seemed to delight in my attempt to capture the spirit of their Dia de Los Muertos festivities. Mexicans, both locals and tourists, had the same reaction everywhere we went. Driving through the streets, a family sitting on their doorstep greeted me with smiles and waves. I posed for my husband with Scott, a fluffy white dog who was fond of wearing sunglasses. A small crowd gathered, asking if they could get photos, too. Scott and I modeled for the cellphone paparazzi like movie stars. When we passed a construction site, a worker asked why I was already in a Day of the Dead costume, a day early. I explained that Halloween was mi cumpleaños. He and his crew ran away, out of sight, as I yelled, “It’s okay! I’m a White Witch! Bruja Blanca! Bruja Buena!” I thought they were scared off, but instead they poured out of the building to line up on the street with me to wish me feliz and take selfies. Everywhere we went, my Catrina was welcomed with joyful appreciation, including the elder señora dancing in the plaza, who grabbed me from my chair to join her for a few vigorous turns on the dance floor. I was exhausted by then, but when a Mexican abuela insists that you dance with her, you don’t explain that you have paralyzing arthritis; you find a way and just pay the price later and are grateful for every ache, knowing it was earned in a state of playful bliss. These were just a few of many such moments. My simple birthday wish turned into a day full of happy, heartfelt moments, made all the more enchanted by the grace and generosity of our Mexican hosts. Thanks for the memories! ¡Gracias por los recuerdos!


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Word Salad By Sally Asante

World “History” part 2

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he second part of Richard Lederer’s neverbefore-known facts of World History as explained by eighth grade to college level students: The greatest writer of the Renaissance was William Shakespeare. Shakespeare never made much money and is famous only because of his plays. He lived at Windsor with his merry wives, writing tragedies, comedies, and errors. In one of Shakespeare’s famous plays, Hamlet rations out his situation by relieving himself in a long soliloquy. In another, Lady Macbeth tries to convince Macbeth to kill the king by attacking his manhood. Romeo and Juliet are an example of a heroic couplet. In Julius Caesar, the toothslayer warned Caesar to beware the March of Dimes. Writing at the same time as Shakespeare was Miguel Cervantes. He wrote Donkey Hote. the next great author was John Milton. Milton wrote Paradise Lost. Then his wife died, and he wrote Paradise Regained. During the Renaissance America began. Christopher Columbus was a great navigator who discovered America while cursing about the Atlantic on the Nina, the Pintacolada, and the Santa Fe. One of the causes of the Revolutionary War was the English put tacks on their tea. Also, the colonists would send their parcels through the post without stamps. Finally, the colonists won the war and no longer had to pay for taxis. The United States was founded by four fathers. Delegates from the original thirteen states formed the Contented Congress. Thomas Jefferson, a Virgin, and Benjamin Franklin were two singers of the Declaration of Independence. Franklin had gone to Boston carrying all his clothes in his pocket and a loaf of bread under each arm. He invented electricity by rubbing cats backwards and declared, “A horse divided against itself cannot stand.” Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead. George Washington married

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Martha Curtis and in due time became the Father of Our Country. Then the Constitution of the United States was adopted to secure domestic hostility. Under the Constitution the people enjoyed the right to keep bare arms. Abraham Lincoln became America’s greatest precedent. Lincoln’s mother died in infancy, and he was born in a log cabin which he built with his very own hands. When Lincoln was president, he wore only a tall silk hat. He said, “In onion there is strength.” President Lincoln wrote the Emasculation Proclamation and kept our country in one peace. He wrote the Gettysburg Address while traveling from Washington to Gettysburg on the back of an envelope. On the night of April 14, 1865, Lincoln went to the theater and got shot in his seat by one of the actors in the moving picture show. The believed assinator was John Wilkes Booth, a supposingly insane actor. This ruined Booth’s career. Meanwhile in Europe, the Enlightenment was a reasonable time. Voltaire invented electricity and also wrote a book called Candy. Gravity was invented by Isaac Walton. It is chiefly noticeable in the autumn, when the apples are falling off the trees. Johann Sebastian Bach wrote a lot of music and had a great many children. He kept an old spinster up in his attic on which he practiced every day. Bach was the most famous composer in the world, and so was Handel. Handel was half-German, half-Italian, and halfEnglish. He was very large. Bach died from 1750 to the present. Ludwig van Beethoven wrote music even though he was deaf. He was so deaf he wrote loud music. He took long walks in the forest even when everyone was calling for him. Beethoven expired in 1827 and later died for this. France was in a very serious state. The French Revolution was accomplished before it happened. The Marseillaise was the theme song of the French Revolution, and it catapulted into Napoleon. During the Napoleonic


Wars, the crowned heads of Europe were trembling in their shoes. Then the Spanish gorillas came down from the hills and nipped at Napoleon’s flanks. Napoleon became ill with bladder problems and was very tense and unrestrained. He wanted an heir to inherit his power, but since Josephine was a baroness, she couldn’t bear children. The sun never set on the British Empire because the British Empire is in the East and the sun sets in the West. Queen Victoria was the longest queen. She sat on a thorn for 63 years. Her reclining years and finally the end of her life were exemplatory of a great personality. Her death was the final event which ended her reign. The nineteenth century was a time of many great inventions and thoughts. The invention of the steamboat caused a network of rivers to spring up. Samuel Morse invented a code of telepathy. Louis Pasteur discovered a cure for rabbis. Charles Darwin was a naturalist who wrote the Organ of the Species, Madman Curie discovered radio, and Karl Marx became one of the Marx Brothers. The First World War was caused by the assignation of the Arch-Duck by an anahist. Wilt Chamberlain practiced appeasement in Europe before the

Second World War thinking that it would stop Hitler and the Nazis. In the Second World War Franklin Roosevelt put a stop to Hitler, who committed suicide in his bunk. Martin Luther had a dream. He went to Washington and recited his Sermon on the Monument. Later, he nailed 96 Protestants in the Watergate Scandal, which ushered in a new error in the anals of human history. (Reprinted with permission.) Sally Asante

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COLUMNIST

PROFILING TEPEHUA By Moonyeen King President of the Board for Tepehua

moonie1935@yahoo.com

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his column visits the Rabbit Hole again briefly to try to understand why all addictions are so hard to break; how the initial problem forcing one to find escape is lost in the struggle to survive not only the problem, but also the addiction. A survivor of every drug, except that which needs to be delivered by a needle, a young man explains it is never over. The cost for him having been two marriages and watching the childhood of two sons slip away...one child now knows his Dad, the other still bitter, hurt and estranged. A huge price to pay. His only vice now is a cigarette, and that is a needed crutch when that little pain starts again for a fulfillment promised that he now knows can never happen. The first euphorias are so great, the memory of it hurts for the repeat pleasure, which can never happen again, not even if you double up on amount. It can only take the user down into the rabbit hole of no relief. All desires are removed like the natural pleasures of good food, sex, sunshine and relationships, laughter and love. One overriding need takes the world away.   Once clean, when natural desires return, it gives a false sense of security as the sun does return to view and you think just one little snort won’t hurt because you have proved you can quit, but it is an immediate slide back down the rabbit hole. Another survivor confessed to falling off the wagon numerous times until he finally got it right, with the love of his wife and children threatening to leave a home in poverty because supplying his habits cost too much. He was killing the love of his family and they resented their struggle because of his dubious pleasure. He changed all his friends and habits and stayed away from places where he knew the temptation was present.

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Another addict, clean for two years now, is woefully sliding and looking half the man as his health is giving up to the beast. He’s in despair now as all his family have left him, again. Addiction is a lonely fight. Women are addicts too but not in the same numbers. They get addicted faster and their trip to hell is complete as they suffer indignities a man never can. At Lakeside we have facilities for addiction for men, but not for women. They are jailed and go through the same abuse there as they do on the streets. Some of us are fully aware we have an addictive personality and can limit and control our addictions, or we think we can. And some of us can afford our pleasures regardless of whether it is passive suicide or not. For those in poverty to begin with, like the people of the barrios, once hooked, there is very little help for them as their problems and despair grow bigger. Although it’s not a pleasant subject, and we would prefer to read about puppy breath and butterflies, it is a public health subject like hunger and lack of clean water around the world.  It is a problem in the poor districts of the world and needs to be addressed.  Especially for women.  For ex-pats there are meetings for Addiction or Alcoholics Anonymous...don’t ever be nervous about reaching out. There are the same for Mexicans in organizations like DIF, and other local government agencies to help the people, but it doesn’t reach to the barrios where it is needed the most.  It again boils down to fixing what´s broken in the first place - get people above the poverty line by giving them the tools of education. Then if they choose to visit the rabbit hole, it is through choice and not desperation.


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When Did Water Become a Department? By Daria Hilton

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orrigan must have seen the phrase “water department” close to half of a million times in her ten years as a meter reader for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. She never thought much about it. Without provocation, the question bubbled up one night as she and her bar mate Tommy sucked down pints of Guinness and watched the Hamms classic beer sign go from river to campsite to waterfall and back to river over and over. “Hey Tommy, when do you think water became a department?” “Water became a department at the same time a line became straight and narrow,” he answered with confident authority, “when white people took over the world.” They drank to that, and to lost dog flyers, forklift drivers, found art and a bunch of other things lost to the haze of alcohol and alcohol-fueled sex. As a month, and then two, went by, most of the memories of that night filed themselves comfortably into a heart-shaped box labeled mangosweet distractions. But the question continued to surface. When did water become a department? Morrigan blamed her unprecedented, and unwelcome, two-month stint of abstinence for her inability to let the question go. That combined with the city’s equally unwelcome fiscal decision to

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replace the old cast iron meter covers, which had featured a replica of the Golden Gate Bridge, with gray, lifeless cement rounds, barely distinguishable from the gray, lifeless sidewalks. The new covers left little room for fanciful meanderings. The unadorned phrase, “water department,” accosted her over and over each day, making her inexplicably less and less comfortable. She eventually became uncomfortable enough to seek an answer. She went to her fallback, trusted source of unbiased information: the public library. It turned out that Tommy had been right all along. Water basically did become a department not long after white people took over. San Francisco is on a peninsula, surrounded on three sides by salt water. There is and was fresh water there to be sure, enough even to supply the intense demand created by the population explosion that the gold rush spurred. Among the many demands the 1849ers made upon the peninsula, the demand for water was paramount. Private water vendors, The Spring Valley Company first among these, used their paid-for political power to condemn and seize whole watersheds. They made more money than the fiendishly opportunistic pick and shovel vendors. Water became and remained a for-profit department. Walking out of the library into the

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noonday sun and the tie-died beehive that turned out to be the tenth annual San Francisco Hemp Festival, Morrigan realized her small kernel of newfound knowledge gave her no comfort. Lord knows why she thought Medical Mary’s Miracle Brownies might, but she wolfed a couple down and tried to enjoy the scene. The music got to her first. Some seemingly earnest and well-rehearsed band cranking out blues standards for the pot-sauced, booty-shaking masses, twirling about in their thrift store layers. Her friend Shanice would have called it cocaine blues, intense and empty.  The uncomfortable intensity of the music increased as it violently ricocheted off the government buildings that contained the plaza and hammered her brain unmercifully. Mustang Sally, Ride, Sally, Ride… With the usual pathways her thoughts steadfastly trekked obliterated by the brownie, the music hijacked Morrigan’s mind and took her for a ride with Sally that went something like: Astronaut, Sally Ride, the first American woman in space, the countless newspapers headlines, Ride, Sally, Ride. Space, NASA, fragments of a documentary about high-G training and g-induced Loss Of Consciousness (G-LOC), Ride, Sally, Ride. That first county fair and the dreadful spinning ride, The Round Up, that spun the puke out of her, Ride, Sally, Ride. In the briefest moment of clarity, Morrigan realized (again) that eating weed was much more intense than smoking it, Ride, Sally, Ride. She tried to sit it out, but the slow blues thump of the song pounded on. All you want to do is ride around Sally, ride, Sally, ride. All you want to do is ride around Sally, ride, Sally, ride. All you want to do is ride around Sally, ride, Sally, ride. She stood up and steadied herself, pushing her hand against one of the well-manicured trees. Electricity washed up her arm, across her body and into her battered brain. The horrible noise, by now the protesting screech of a sharply turned steering column low on fluid, vanished. She felt the pulse of the tree. Slow. Slower than rocks cooling in the comparative cool of a hot evening after a scorching day, slower than moss growing. Slow. Taken out of time and place, she could sense the roots of the tree gently spreading three asphalt inches below her feet, drinking calmly. And the breathing too. She could feel it. Not the clumsy in and out of lungs, but an electric exchange of molecules. Tiny trades that, repeated almost infinitely, created the solid, majestic presence before her out of thin air.  She was afraid to hold on, or let go.

“Dude! What’s up?!” exclaimed some suddenly present voice, followed by an exuberant embrace, both of which turned out to come from her friend J.J.. “Woman, are you high, or what?!” Morrigan could only manage a uneven smile, relieved that she wasn’t being accosted by some love-hungry, hippy stranger. “I’ll take that as a yes.” There may have been a conversation on her way to J.J.’s North Beach studio, but her memories were jumbled, snatches of bright color seen through a steamy, glass, dryer door. She did remember the sex. Tongues employed in every manner imaginable not pertaining to speech. The music, Bach’s solo cello suites, gripping them almost as palpably as their entangled arms and legs. And the smell, more salty than sweet, the way the air smells on an isolated, hot, rocky beach. Much later, when cogent thought returned, J.J. stated, rather matter-offactly, “The Hemp Festival doesn’t really seem like your style.” Even J.J.’s most outlandish opinions were stated as facts, a habit Morrigan adored him for. “I was at the library doing research.” “Don’t tell me. You’re still pursuing your alien/wheat conspiracy theory.” “It’s not only my theory, and, no, I wasn’t, but I’m more and more convinced that I’m on to something with that alien/wheat connection.” “You are a complete lunatic. How can you say that with a straight face?” A day and half later, and an hour and a half late for work, Morrigan hustled herself and a steaming cup of muddy nirvana from Graffeo’s Coffee Shop onto the 30 Stockton. Content at first to revel in the soothing dark goodness of her coffee, the worms inside her brain began to edge away at the familiar coziness she felt after a tryst. They brought up the question. “I answered that damn question,” she scolded the worms. “The next obvious question is why did water become a department,” the worms countered. Morrigan knew they were right. There was always a next question and why questions often required answers you couldn’t find in a library. The meaning she had never looked for wanted to be found. She sighed and sipped her coffee, accepting and appreciating the simple pleasure it afforded but knowing also that her life had been irrevocably altered. The bus rumbled out of North Beach toward a future as murky, stimulating and gloriously satisfying as the brew she brought to her lips and swallowed. Daria Hilton


Replaced By Katina Pontikes

She received antique roses weekly, heavily scented, red and perfect. Long romantic lunches were on Fridays; Wednesday nights were theirs alone. They had a special relationship, forged in mutual need and satisfaction. Both were passionate and content, wanted this to last forever. He only rarely referred to his wife and her constant criticisms and demands. She listened attentively, anticipating what he needed to offset his current concerns. There were no noisy children to distract them or cause life stresses. A perfect arrangement for several years, no glitches, no bumps. On the tenth lonely Christmas Eve something wakened in her. She no longer felt as valued, as special, and she knew she was aging. She decided to pursue a different goal, gently, to change the situation. They had “the talk� the day after Christmas, after their gift exchange. He listened sadly, a weight suddenly on his shoulders, a change in his life. His marriage had become one of convenience, his wife managing daily affairs. The romance with his mistress was what motivated him, kept him virile. Divorce became the only way to maintain that feeling of control, of manliness. The marriage to his mistress followed quickly, and they were happy. At first. Then, after a couple of years, routines started to exert themselves into their daily bliss. Someone had to run the household, do the mundane chores. Changes happened slowly, until they had extinguished all the heat and fire. Now, she sits alone on Wednesday nights, afraid to ask where he is going.

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Skin Deep By Bert Slocomb

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ith so much divisiveness and national animosity saturating the airwaves, press and political arenas of the United States over the issue of ‘Race’ that it would be well to discuss what we mean by the word ‘race’. First, science has proved through world-wide DNA genetic tracking through the ‘female’ line that there is no scientific or genetic basis for ‘race’. What we do find is largely made up label used by all of us both unconsciously and consciously on some form or another to define and separate ‘US’ from ‘THEM’. Over the past decades genetic research has revealed two deep truths about people. The first is that all peoples are closely related, even though there are many more humans around today. Everyone on the planet has the same collection of genes,

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but with the exception of identical twins, everyone has slightly different versions of some of them. The second deep truth is very hard for some of us white Caucasians to swallow. In fact, it is probably the most shocking revelation most of us will ever have to face and that is that ALL people alive today have their ‘origins; from Africa. Our species, Homo Sapiens evolved from Africa. Our original primeval genetic mother could have very easily have been a bright ebony skin-colored beauty. No one is exactly sure of the exact time or place but our primeval mother could have been our primeval ancestor from one of todays several ancient tribes of Africa like the Hadza hunter-gatherers of Tanzania, the Khe San of South Africa or the Pygmies who spent tens of thousands of years separated from one

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another even before human emigrated out of Africa. DNA is often thought of as a ‘text’ with these 4 letters standing for chemical bases: A for adenine, C for Cystocine, G for Guanine, and T for Thymine. Over the 300,000 years or so we humans have been around there have been numerous small teaks to our DNA which have made us who we are, including the impact of both the environment and culture. Genetic research has shown that our Genome consists of 3 billion base pairs - page after page of ‘A’s,’ C’s, ‘G’s and ‘T’’s which are roughly divided into 20,000 genes. What genetics has shown is that ‘mixture’ and ‘displacement’ has happened again and again over  thousands of years and that our human ‘mythical’ pictures of ‘racial’ structures  are almost always wrong - myths that have accumulated over generations from faulty thinking resulting in the present increasingly dangerous paradigm of ‘US and ‘THEM’. In the first half of the 20th Century, a prominent scientist from Philadelphia named Morton spent his whole life collecting human skulls. From his studies on skulls, Morton divided the people on the planet into groups based on the configuration of their skulls. Morton called his science ‘Craniometry’ He determined that ‘whites’ or ‘Caucasians’

were the most intelligent of the races. Today, Morton is known as the father of ‘Scientific Racism’. When he died in 1851 the Charleston Medical Journal in South Carolina praised him for “giving to the negro his true position as ‘inferior’ race”. So many of the horrors of the past two centuries can be traced to the idea that one race is inferior to another. To an unforgettable degree, we still live today with Morton’s legacy. Racial distinctions continue to shape our politics, our neighborhoods, and even our sense of self. The ceremony at the White House in 2000 celebrated the unraveling of the Human Genome evoked this statement from Craig Ventnor, a pioneer of DNS sequencing,....”The concept of ‘race’ has no genetic or scientific basis.” With the present incumbent of the White House and many of his selected cabinet members showing increasing disturbing and dangerous signs and symptoms of ‘mythical’ racial profiling one can only hope and pray that in the best interests of the United States and the world at large they will remove their racial blind spots and learn quickly what the sciences have been teaching for decades, that the word ‘race’ is decadent in the lexicon of life and is only a dangerous expression of our own mental ‘myths’ and selfish fantasies of ‘THEM’.


Hello

By Margie Kean Here I am, back again And thoughts of you start flooding in, I like reliving that special day When, exhausted from the pounding waves We stretched out on our blanket, warm sun poring over us We drank it in Salt water drip-dried on our skin Leaving a fine silvery sheen That I tasted on your neck, your lips, You kissed it off my fingertips While together we watched the surf run in. Lace edged foam caressed the sand, Stroked our feet, would touch, recede, We felt the ocean’s stirring begin, Swelling, diminishing, swelling again, Building a wave that grew higher, high Seeming to block out sun and sky Until reaching its crest it hung there frozen For one exquisite moment then Crashed down, and with breath taking force In frenzied abandon rushed to shore Spritzers of foam, pushed ahead by the roller Spent at last, ran slow slower Fragmented sun sparkles bounced off the spray, Danced on our eye lids that sweet summer day! Together we watched the surf, then laughing, running, Feet spanking sand We threw ourselves on the breaking waves Bathed in the drowning sun’s final rays, Promising we’d come back again Was the end beginning then? I still come back How many years? I lose track But mingled ashes, sand and sea I feel you washing over me And when the surf runs in And nibbles my toes I know it’s you,   Hello

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The Ojo Crossword

Any House Will Do By Margie Keane

O

ACROSS

DOWN

1 4 9 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 22 24 25 27 31 32 33 34 36 38 40 42 43 44 45 47 51 53 54 55 57 59 62 65 66 67 68 69 70 71

1 Substitute 2 Common bird 3 Worried 4 The alphabet 5 Orderly 6 Harden 7 Long-term memory 8 Change into bone 9 Prefix ten 10 Iranian’s neighbor 11 Ex-serviceman 12 Parody 13 Pigpen 21 Synthetic 23 Tyrannosaurus ____ 25 Barrow 26 Alternative (abbr.) 28 Mix 29 In __ of (instead of) 30 Flightless bird 32 Food container 35 Brand of dispensable candy 36 Request 37 Work out the details 38 Mr. Donahue 39 Fats 40 Electron, for example 41 American College of Physicians (abbr.) 42 Unhappiness 43 Brassiere 45 South by west 46 Outlines 48 Man’s title 49 Laud 50 Cut a piece 52 Bedspread feather 56 Not yours 57 Ill __ 58 Merely 59 Owns 60 Pixy 61 BB association 63 Hatchet 64 Sorbet

Hertz __ Saxon Female lead singers Wallop Root vegetables Construct Stage of life Lulls Spiteful Most recent Asian nation Movie __ Restaurant Island Ceases Sepals of a flower Dickens’Tiny __ Separate Adios Strong National capital Speed by Male deer (pl.) Lubricate Sharpen a razor Pixies Otherwise Cereal ingredient Female Midwestern state Japanese tree Eastern religion Hiker’s trail marker Twitch Brownish yellow Exceed Vane direction Poles Run down Scarlet

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n one of our trips from Connecticut to California we happened to drive by Henryetta, Oklahoma and I saw a sign that said “Welcome to the Birth place of Troy Aikman. ‘Stop and pay a visit to his Homestead’ For those of you who don’t follow football, Troy Aikman was a famous quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. I am a big Cowboy fan as is my son in law, Bruce and I thought it would be fun to find some Aikman trivia for him.  We stopped at a gas station and I asked the woman in charge if she could tell us how to get to Troy Aikman’s homestead but she had no idea who he was or where he lived. Not to be denied, I suggested we go to a liquor store that I spotted down the road, surely there would be some good old boys hanging out who could help us, but instead we met two women – one was the owner, a hefty woman about sixty with bleached blond hair done up in a bee hive. She gave me a disdainful look through her cat’s eye glasses and uttered a “HUMPH.” The other woman, younger and skinny jumped up and started telling us how we could “jest  foller this road two blocks, then make a turn on New Lake Road ‘and keep a follerin’ for a ways more and then I forget the name of the road you turn on but you’ll probably find it.” I said “We’re not from around here, we’re from California and I’m not sure the roads or landmarks that are familiar to you will help us, but we thank you any way.” Mizz cat’s eyes drew herself up to a full huff and announced, “Well if ya’all are from California, yall should to know all about Troy, he was born in California, came here when he was just a baby.”

“Gee, I didn’t know that,” I said, trying to ingratiate myself. Do you know him?” “Know him! I guess I do! Troy was just another kid to me, used to cut his hair for him all the time.” I got the feeling that either she didn’t like him or was unimpressed by his fame. About then a big burly man in farmer overalls came in and the skinny woman jumped up and ran over to him. “Hey, Leroy, you live up by the old Aikman place, can ya tell these folks how to get there? “Not really,” he replied, I don’t pay no attention to road signs, I just drive ’til I get to my home.” “Well, couldn’t they foller you home?” she asked. “Well, sure”, the big man said” “Great”, says the skinny woman. “But I ain’t goin” right home,” says the burly fella “How long you folks gonna be in town? I could drive ya there in the mornin’, offered the skinny woman. Tom, who had remained quiet through all of this, started pushing me toward the car and said, “we’re leaving at four in the morning but thank you for your effort. It’s been swell talking with you.” We jumped in our car and sped off.  A little way down the road Tom pulled up in front of an old farm house and said, “Give me the camera.”  He stepped out of the car, took a picture of the old home, then turned to me and said, “You can send this to Bruce, This is now Troy Aikman’s homestead!”   I didn’t send Bruce the picture – I sent him this story and a picture I took of Miss Cat’s Eye and the skinny woman. Margie Keane


A Poet By Juan Sacelli

a poet cannot be a christian a muslim, buddhist, Jew for those are old I’s in which everything seen is obscene a poet cannot be a capitalist marxist, theorist, socialist for those are old I’s in which every scene which is foreseen is still unseen a poet is neither theist nor atheist but classless and massless a poet writes no fiction and no facts but shuns both fact-shuns and fic-shuns both found and profound until the facts are fitted with a deference into a difference a poet ends her poem not before he has ended but before you have ended and before we have begun

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A Ballet Dancer In Russia 1986 By Gabrielle Blair

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y dream has been to visit Russia, now the Soviet Union, to see the best dancers in the world. It’s 1986 and I’m with a party of Canadian ballet students and teachers on a two-week tour of Leningrad, Minsk, and Moscow. I am no longer a performer, but I’m eager to see the famous Vaganova method of training firsthand, the system that produced Rudolph Nureyev, Natalia Makarova, and Michel Baryshnikov, dancers we’ve seen in the West because they defected. We know of others: Anna Pavlova, Vatslav Nijinsky, Galina Ulanova, long-departed spirits that we’ve wished to emulate. It is February with daily temper-

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atures seldom above minus 21 degrees Fahrenheit. We’re visiting Catherine the Great’s palace where I photograph the magnificent grounds and remove my mitts to handle the dials on my old camera, resulting in a close call with frostbite. Our Intourist guides keep us busy from morning to night, sightseeing and theater going. We soon learn that we must be flexible. Our first disappointment is in Leningrad where we’re told that we won’t see the Kirov Ballet as the company is on tour. My Russian mother-in-law, Nora, who is head pianist of a Toronto university dance department and who has arranged the tour, spends hours on the phone

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

trying to get tickets for Moscow’s Bolshoi Ballet. The theater is sold out, but somehow she procures seats at the side, in boxes three tiers up, where we see only half the stage by standing the entire performance. Frustrated, I leave with a less-than-satisfactory opinion of their new version of Romeo and Juliet. Nadeshda Pavlova, dancing “Juliet” is very good, if a trifle plump; “Mercutio” and “Tybalt” are virtuosos, but “Romeo” is weak. There are no set changes and I miss the expected opulence. The highlight of my trip is a visit to the Leningrad Choreographic School, which later will revert to its original name, the Maryinsky. This will be during Perestroika, still a few years away, when the city of Leningrad reverts to St. Petersburg. I am with Nora, and it’s late one night after we’ve seen an hilarious operetta called Dorothea by Sheridan at the Maly theater, with an unforgettable burlesque number danced by 36 black-clad, singing nuns. We are visiting Serge Sorokin, a well-known ballet historian and archivist who knows everyone who is, or ever has been, someone in the ballet world. When he learns that none of our party has been allowed into the school, he immediately phones Anatoly Nesnevitch, a former principal dancer with the Kirov Ballet, now a teacher at the school, and who was once a partner to Makarova. It is midnight. Nesnevitch sounds uncertain, but he says Nora and I should meet him at the school next morning at 8:50 sharp and he will try to sneak us in for his nine o’clock class. It means foregoing the scheduled visit to the Hermitage Museum, but we could hardly miss this opportunity. We’re on time. Comrade Nesnevitch tells the formidable woman sitting at her table guarding the place—there’s one of these on every floor of most buildings—that we’re VIPs, and we enter the hallowed halls of the Maryinsky School to watch him teach a class of eight 16-year-old boys in their sixth year. They train for eight years. The building is ancient and freezing cold. Some years later they will move to a new building with spacious, modern studios, but now Nora and I sit huddled together for warmth. Our coats are three flights downstairs in the cloakroom and when we suggest we go back and get them, Nesnevitch says this isn’t advisable because we may never get past security and back up again. So we suffer. But that isn’t all we suffer. The students are taught in the old method, meaning with constant verbal abuse and no praise at all. Nora translates in whispered undertones: “My friends!” he begins. “Why are you wasting my time? Why are you wasting your time? Don’t you want to learn

anything? Have you not been listening to anything I’ve been telling you all year?” And so it goes from one gruelling exercise to another. His tone drips sarcasm, while his superb students, the future generation of male stars, drip sweat in spite of the cold. Occasionally a student wets the splintery studio floor with a watering can. There is no rosin, something a dancer needs to coat the bottom of his ballet slippers to prevent slipping, so water will have to do. Twice a little boy from an adjoining studio comes to borrow “our” watering can as there aren’t enough to go around. After watching the boys’ class, Nesnevitch asks if we would like to stay and see a girls’ class taught by Natalia Dudinskaya. The famous Dudinskaya! I’ve seen her in my ballet books, now in her seventies, a legend who’s trained numerous greats. She’s half an hour late, not unusual we are told. One of the 13 16-year-old girls instructs the pianist and they begin their barre. Dudinskaya arrives and Nesnevitch introduces us: “Gabrielle is a former ballerina with the London Festival Ballet,” he says. She smiles sweetly and replies in her bit of English: “I knew Beryl Grey very well,” (a Royal Ballet prima ballerina, who’d become artistic director of Festival Ballet after I left to return to South Africa). We sit through another gruelling and fascinating hour and a half where these beautiful, budding ballerinas are subjected to the same kind of verbal abuse. I can’t believe what I’m hearing. In the West our students would have dissolved in tears and probably given up dancing forever. So this is how the Russians produce the best dancers in the world. Maybe the system works because the whole country, it seems to me, is run along authoritarian lines. We certainly use a much gentler approach, but our technique doesn’t match theirs. In these two weeks, having seen many performances including the Bolshoi’s Romeo and Juliet and a poor children’s ballet called Chippolina, based on an Italian fairy-tale, performed by the Minsk State Ballet, I comprehend why some Soviet dancers want to leave and come to the West. There is something musty and stale about their choreography, and their attempt at Modern Dance is dated. I will return to Canada with a better understanding of how ballet is evolving and thanks to the inspiration from the Russian dancers who have defected, our bar is now being raised to surpass theirs. Gabrielle Blair


Saw you in the Ojo 57


Service - EL OJO DEL LAGO Tel. 376 765-3676

* ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS Pag: 48

* ANIMAL CLINICS/PET SHOP - BIO MAXCOTA Tel: 376 762-1486, Cell: 332-115-0076 Pag: 18 - CLINICA VETERINARIA SAN ANTONIO Pag: 06 Tel: 376 766-0808 - LAKESIDE FRIENDS OF THE ANIMALS AC Pag: 15 Tel: 376 765-5544 - MASKOTA’S LAKE Pag: 38 Tel: 376 766-0287, 33-3448-2507 - PET PLACE Pag: 40 Cell: 333-1964-150

* ANTIQUES & FURNITURE - GALERIA ALFREDO Tel: 376 766-2980

Pag: 12

* ART GALLERIES/HANDCRAFTS - AJIJIC SOCIETY OF THE ARTS - DIANE PEARL COLECCIONES Tel: 376 766-5683 - GALERIA ALFREDO Tel: 376 766-2980 - LA BELLA VIDA Tel: 376 766-5131

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* AUTOMOTIVE

* BAKERY Pag: 42

Pag: 07 Pag: 11

* BEAUTY - CHRISTINE’S Tel: 376 106-0864, 376 766-6140 - EDITH’S SALON Cell: 33-1310-9372 - GLORIOSA Tel: 376 766-3372 - NEW LOOK STUDIO Tel: 376 766-6000, 33-3950-9990

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* BED & BREAKFAST - CASA TRES LEONES Cell: 331-350-6764

Pag: 11

* BEER & LIQUOR STORES - BETO’S WINE & LIQUOR Cell: 333-507-3024

Pag: 45

* BIKES - RIDERS OF THE SIERRA MADRE

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- DR. LOWELL BIRCH, Chiropractor Cell: 331-319-1799, Tel: 376 688-1244 Pag: 9, 30, 51

* CLEANING SERVICES Pag: 41

* COMMUNICATIONS

Pag: 43

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* ELECTRONICS/ TECHNOLOGY

Pag: 49

- FUMIGA Tel: 376 688-2826, Cell: 331-464-6705 - MOSQUITO CONTROL

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Pag: 24

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- NAPOLEON Tel: 376 766-6153

Pag: 13

- CASA INARQ Tel: 376 766-5397 Pag: 47 - FERRETERIA Y TLAPALERIA GALVEZ Tel: 376 766-0880, Fax: 376 766-2440 Pag: 62

- HEALTH INSURANCE Pag: 15 Tel: 376 766-0395, 1-888-449-7799 - LAKESIDE INSURANCE - EDGAR CEDEÑO Cell: 33-3106-6982, Tel: 33-1594-7897 Pag: 08 - PARKER INSURANCE SERVICES Pag: 13 Tel: 376 765-5287, 376 765-4070 - PROTEXPLAN U.S. Toll Free 1-800-608-5743 Mexico Toll Free 01-800-681-6730 Pag: 24 - TIOCORP Pag: 14 Tel: 376 766-4828, 376 766-3978 - HECHT INSURANCE Pag: 55

* INVESTMENT Pag: 48

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* MEAT / POULTRY Pag: 24

- PURITAN PUOLTRY Tel: 376 765-4399

* MEDICAL SERVICES Pag: 49

- ALTA RETINA - Dr. Rigoberto Rios León

Pag: 18 Pag: 03 Pag: 13

* MUSIC / THEATRE / EVENTS - D.J. HOWARD Tel: 376 766-3044

Pag: 42

- RAINBOW NOTARY & NUPTIALS Tel: 904-333-7311

Pag: 43

- MAQUINARIA Y HERRAMIENTAS PROFESIONALES Tel: 387-763-1232, Cell: 33-1892-2142

Pag: 42

* PAINT - QUIROZ-Impermeabilizantes Tel: 376 766-2311 - QUIROZ-Pinturas Tel: 376 766-2311

Pag: 51 Pag: 22

* PHARMACIES - FARMACIA MASKARAS Tel: 376 766-3539 - FARMEX Tel: 376 765-5004

Pag: 40 Pag: 35

- JOSÉ MARTÍNEZ RUBALCAVA Tel: 376 688-2683, Cell: 332-255-2040

Pag: 12

* REAL ESTATE

* LIGHTING

- CENTRO LAGUNA Tel: 376 766-5514

- BEST MEXICO MOVERS US/CANADA: (915) 235-1951 US Cell: (520) 940-0481 - LAKE CHAPALA MOVING Tel: 376 766-5008 - STROM-WHITE MOVERS Tel: 376 766-6153

* PUBLIC ACCOUNTANT

* LEGAL SERVICES

- L&D CENTER Tel: 376 766-1064

* MOVERS

* OUTDOOR EQUIPMENT

* INSURANCE

- SOLBES & SOLBES Tel: 331-520-5529, Cell: 333-676-6245

Ophthalmic Surgeon Pag: 16 Tel: 376 688-1122, 376 688-1343 - DERMIKA Pag: 13 Tel: 376 766-2500 - DR. BEN - CERTIFIED PLASTIC SURGEON Pag: 10 Tel: 376 766-4871, Cell: 333-105-0402 - DR. GABRIEL HERNANDEZ NUÑO - Plastic Surgery Tel: 376-766-5513, 376-766-0866 Pag: 33 - DR. FRANCISCO J. REYES ESQUIVEL PhD Surgical Oncologist 376-766-2500, Cell: 331-110-7351 Pag: 20 - DR. HECTOR G. MIRAMONTES - SPECIALIST IN COSMETIC SURGERY Tel: (332) 203-6398 Pag: 12 - DRA. CLAUDIA LILIA CAMACHO CHOZAOphthalmologist Tel: 33-3403-3857 Pag: 27 - PLASTICA LIFT Pag: 39 Tel: 376 108-0595, 376 688-1820

* NOTARY SERVICES

* HEARING AIDS

* MALL / OUTLET Pag: 27

* FISH MARKET - COSTALEGRE Tel: 376 108-1087, 33-1173-6144

- ATLAS COUNTRY CLUB Tel: 33-3689-2620

- INVESTMENT Tel: 387 763-0782

DENTISTS

- STEREN Tels. 376 766-0599, 376 766-0630

Pag: 30

- M.D. CARLOS ALONSO FLORES VALDOVINOS Tel: 376 766-5126, 376 766-4435 Pag: 11

- COMFORT SOLUTIONS Pag: 30 Tel: 33-1228-5377 - GENERAL HOME SERVICES - Amancio Ramos Jr. Cell: 331-520-3054 Pag: 08 - PISOS Y AZULEJOS DE LA RIBERA Pag: 47 Cell: 331-250-6486 - ROBERTO MILLAN - ARCHITECT Tel: 376-766-3771, Cell: 331-340-3758 Pag: 41 - SIKA Pag: 43 Tel: 376 766-5959 - WARWICK CONSTRUCTION Pag: 42 Tel: 376 108-8754, Cell. 331-135-0763

- C.D. SANDRA ANAYA MORA Cell: 331-218-6241 - DRA. ANGELICA ALDANA LEMA DDS Tel. 376 765-5364, Cell: 33-1351-7797 - CHAPALA DENTAL CARE Tel: 376 765-5584, 376 766-3847 - MOJO DENTAL - Dra. Cristina Barreto Tel: 376 688-2731

- GARDEN CENTER Tel: 376 765-5973 - RAINFOREST Cell: 331-241-9773, Tel: 376 766-4534

* HARDWARE STORES Pag: 03

* COMPUTERS

- TEPEHUA TREASURES Tel: 376 763-5126

- AUTOMATIC GARAGE DOOR OPENERS Pag: 24 Tel: 376 766-4973, Cell: 332-213-8933

* GRILLS

- TRANSITIONAL DIRECTIONS - Life Coaching Tel: 766-2928, +52 331-435-7080 Pag: 13

- LAKESIDE - CompuShop + Repair Tel: 33-2340-7501 / 376 668-1354

Pag: 37

* GOLF

* COACHING

- ISHOPNMAIL Tel: 376 766-1933

- UOU Tel: 33-3149-4536, 376-106-1618

* GARDENING

* CHIROPRACTOR

- STEAM CLEAN Tel: 33-2385-0410

Pag: 33

* GARAGE DOORS OPENERS

* CANOPIES - LONAS MEXICO Tel: 376 766-0045, Cell: 33-3956-4852

Cell: 331-498-7699

* FURNITURE Pag: 25

* FUMIGATION

* BODY SHOP - BODY SHOP AJIJIC Tel: 376 766-5246

- LA BELLA VIDA Tel: 376 766-5131 - SO CHIC BOUTIQUE Tel: 331-762-7838

* CONSTRUCTION

* BANK INVESTMENT - INTERCAM Tel: 376 766-5978 - MULTIVA Tel: 376 766-2499

DIRECTORY

* CONSIGNMENT SHOP

- MULTISERVICIO AUTOMOTRIZ ESCALERA Tel: 376 765-4424, 333-440-2412 Pag: 50

- COLIBRI GARDEN Tel: 376-765-4412, Cell: 333-156-9382

directory.chapala.com

* BOUTIQUE / CUSTOM SEWING

* ADVERTISING / DIRECTORY

- ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS Tel: 376 766-5961

EMERGENCY NUMBERS EMERGENCY HOTLINE 911 CRUZ ROJA 376 765-2308, 376 765-2553 FIRE DEPARTMENT 376 766-3615 POLICE Ajijic 376 766-1760 Chapala 376 765-4444 La Floresta 376 766-5555

Pag: 43

- AJIJIC HOME INSPECTIONS Tel: 33-3904-9573 Pag: 53 - AJIJIC REAL ESTATE Tel: 37 6766-2077 Pag: 17 - ARELLANO CORPORATION GROUP Pag: 49 - BAUERHOUSE PROPERTIES Tel: 33-3038-1803 Pag: 31 - BETTINA BERING Cell. 33-1210-7723 Pag: 23 - BEV COFELL Cell: 33-1193-1673 Pag: 38 - CIELOVISTA Tel: 33-2002-2400 Pag: 05 - COLDWELL BANKER CHAPALA REALTY Tel: 376 765-3676, 376 765-2877 Fax: 765-3528 Pag: 64 Tel: 376 766-1152, 376 766-3369


- CONTINENTAL REALTY Tel: 376 766-1994 Pag: 35 - CUMBRES Tel: 33-2002-2400 Pag: 05 - DAMYN YOUNG Tel: 331-603-7501 Pag: 41 - ESTHER WHITSELL Cell: 333-181-5717 Pag: 47 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Tel: +1 720-984-2721, +52 33-1395-9062 Pag: 55 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Pag: 52 Cell: 33-1433-3599 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Pag: 50 Cell: 33-3822-8718 - JUDIT RAJHATHY Cell: 331-395-9849 Pag: 19 - LAKE CHAPALA REAL ESTATE Tel: 376 766-4530/40 Pag: 63 - LORELI NUÑO Cell: 333-830-3023 Pag: 42 - LORI FIELSTED REALTY Tel: 331-365-0558 Pag: 27 - MARGARITA AVILA Cell: 331-268-3927 Pag: 46 - MI CASA Tel: 376 688-2626, Cell: 331-539-1601 Pag: 39, 40 - PIEDRA VIVA Tel: 33-2801-8468 Pag: 29 - RADISSON BLU Ajijic Resort, Spa & Residences

Tel: 376 766-4525, Cell: 332-255-5972 Pag: 33 - RAUL GONZALEZ Cell: 33-1437-0925 Pag: 03, 43 - SANTANA RENTALS AND REAL ESTATE Tel: 315-351-5167, 315-108-3425 Pag: 53 - VISTA ALEGRE Tel: 33-2002-2400 Pag: 05

* RENTALS/PROPERTY MANAGEMENT - AJIJIC HOMES 4 RENT – Property Management Tel: 33-1520-1980 Pag: 45 - COLDWELLBANKER CHAPALA REALTY Pag: 56 Tel: 376 766-1152, Cell: 331-386-7597 - EAGER REALTY Tel: 333-137-8447, 376 766-1917 Pag: 20 - FOR RENT Pag: 55 Cell: 333-667-6554 - FOR RENT Pag: 48 Cell: 33-1115-6584 - ROMA Pag: 44 Cell: 33-1075-7768 - SANTANA RENTALS AND REAL ESTATE Tel: 315-351-5167, 315-108-3425 Pag: 45 - VILLAS DEL SOL Pag: 51 Tel: 376 766-1152

* RESTAURANTS / CAFES /BAR - AJIJIC TANGO Tel: 376 766-2458 - GO BISTRO Cell: 33-3502-6555 - LA TAVERNA Tel: 376-766-2848 - MANIX Tel: 376-766-0061, Cell: 331-065-0725 - MOM’S DELI & RESTAURANT Tel: 376 765-5719 - THE HOT DOG SHOP Tel: 376 766-3807, Cell: 333-662-9990 - YVES Tel: 376 766-3565 - ZARANDEADO PERO FELIZ

* RETIREMENT/REST/NURSING HOMES - ALICIA’S CONVALESCENT Tel: 376 766-1194, 376 766-2999 - CASA LA VIDA REAL Tel: 376-108-2506, Cell: 33-2804-3892 - CASA ANASTASIA - Care Home Tel: 376 765-5680 - CASA NOSTRA-Nursing Home Tel: 376 765-3824 - LA PUEBLITA Tel: (376) 688-1705, 33-2728-5534 - NURSING HOME LAKE CHAPALA S.C. Tel: 376 766-0404 - VIDA BELLA SEÑIOR RESIDENCE Tel: 376-765-4000

- AJIJIC ELECTRONICS S.A. DE C.V. Tel: 376 766-1117, 376 766-3371 - SHAW SATELLITE SERVICES Tel: 33-1402-4223

- LOS NIÑOS DE CHAPALA Y AJIJIC Tel: 376 765-7032

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* SOLAR ENERGY - SUN QUEST ENERGY Tel: 376 766-6156, Cell: 333-117-9126

Pag: 25

* SPA / MASSAGE - GANESHA SPA Tel: 376 766-5653, Cell: 331-385-9839 - TOTAL BODY CARE Tel: 376 766-3379

Pag: 45 Pag: 20

* STAINED GLASS - AIMAR-Stained Glass Cell: 33-1741-3515

Pag: 30

* TAXI / TRANSPORTATION - DANIEL’S PERSONAL DRIVER Cell: 33-3662-9990 - OMAR MEDINA Cell: 33-1281-2818 - TAXI-Arturo Fernandez Cell: 333-954-3813

Pag: 37 Pag: 46 Pag: 53

* TOURS - CHARTER CLUB TOURS Tel: 376-766-1777

Pag: 06

- CHAPALA TREE SERVICE Tel: 376 762-0602, Cell: 33-1411-0242

Pag: 03

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* SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS

* TREE SERVICE

Pag: 51

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* SATELLITES/ T.V.

Pag: 62

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* WATER - TECNO AQUA Tel: 376 766-3731, 376 688-1038

Pag: 49

* WRITING SERVICES

Pag: 08 Pag: 53

- PROFESSIONAL WRITING SERVICES Tel: 33-2303-2619, Cell: 33-2389-0302

Pag: 26

Pag: 51

Saw you in the Ojo 59


CARS FOR SALE: 2005 Nissan Platina Excellent condition, new brakes and rotors, new motor mounts, new ac electronics, new alarm system, new rh mirror, new water pump, all new belts. 58,000 pesos. Cell: 332 821 3531 in Chula Vista. FOR SALE: custom golf carts. Email ryan@sccarts.ca  WANTED: SUV Wanted. Want to buy a clean, solid car for a working Mom who travels with two babies in car seats.  We’d prefer a small SUV, but any really good car would do.  PLEASE, no lemons!  This hard-working woman drives every day from Guadalajara. The vehicle she has broke down on the Chapala Highway near the El Salto exit....and we absolutely don’t want that danger to happen ever again! Please call my cell if you have a vehicle for sale:   331-722-3408  WANTED: Mexican plated Travel Trailer or RV. Used with a good price. Well worn is ok if price is ok. I can not see the reply. Email: LanaCoffman@ yahoo.com WANTED: US Plated 4 wheel drive SUV or Pick Up. I have a family member who’d like to buy an American plated used 4 wheel drive SUV or pick up (for use in the US).  I’m aware it needs to go to the US for the purchase to be made there, but this can be handled.  Anyone have a good used SUV (or pick up) they’d like to sell?  Budget is up to $5,000 USD. FOR SALE: Custom 1992 VW

Bug, Green and yellow VW with rear of car customized. Removable for rear included. Good condition and reliable. Easy to get around in and find parking places. Green Bay Packers or Oregon Ducks color scheme. $55,000.00 pesos. Jalisco plated current. More info and photos available just email me.  WANTED: Looking for late model Toyota Camry 4p LE L4/2.5. Under 50,000km.

COMPUTERS FOR SALE: Logitech X-230 Multimedia computer speakers with gaming subwoofer. Excellent condition. 1500 pesos or best offer. contact Dan 376766-2722, leave message. FOR SALE: BROTHER LASER PRINTER, MODEL: DCP L2540DW. This is a great LASER printer, so many features, I can’t even start to list them all. This gets 5 ***** in reviews. It’s a B/W printer, however if you must have a color copy, you can scan in color and then take that to a stationary store and have it printed in color. Check the price online, and you will find it’s going for a few pesos less than $4,000. https://www.google.com/sea rch?channel=crow2&client=firefox-bd&q=DCP+L2540+DW I will give you a new, unopened toner cartridge. You can get hundreds of pages from a cartridge, depending on your coverage. I will take $2,200.00. If it’s so great, why am I selling it? In Mexico, I learned it’s always good to have a back up, but I don’t need it now. You pick it up in

The Ojo Crossword

60

El Ojo del Lago / November 2020

Chapala Haciendas 2. I have the printed manual and you can D/L the drivers online. You can use it USB or Wireless (Hide it in a closet, out of the way). 1988jeopardychampion@gmail.com

PETS & SUPPLIES

WANTED: I need 2 soft sides , airline approved, pet carriers if anyone has one of two to sell.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE FOR SALE: Twin bed mattress topper. still in the factory wrapping. never used. Purchase locally $145.00. for sale $100.00. Cell. 332 821 3531 FOR SALE: SLIK-800G Camera Tripod. Lightweight aluminum, compact, adjustable, 3 way panning head, 3 section legs, centre column radial brace.  Very good condition, $15 USD. Email: rjmc444@gmail.com FOR SALE: New “Lifetime” double composter brand; deluxe, new, still in the box. 10,000 pesos. Please contact Ed at 376-765-3147 if interested. WANTED: Want to buy used hard side, lightweight suitcase. Looking for about carry on size of a bit larger. 331 857 0798.  TIA FOR SALE: Bosch stackable washer/dryer only $8,500p. Call John 331 575-6663 FOR SALE: Selling 125 Italika scooter 2 years old with only 695km $11,500p or BO! Call John 331 5756663 FOR SALE: King headboard 86 in wide and 57 in tall  $800 pesos  Now $700    Please PM. 2 two drawer nightstands. 23in wide 15in deep and 25in high. $700 pesos each Now $600 each! FOR SALE: 2 lamps for sale with no shades. $400 pesos each Now $300 each. Please PM if interested.  FOR SALE: A 20in Vizio TV $400 pesos and 19in Sylvania TV $300 pesos(not smart) No remotes. Model VX20L HDTV, Model LC195SLX. Please PM for viewing. FOR SALE: 7 Drawer Dresser for sale. 63in high, 24in wide and 21in deep. REDUCED! From $1500 to $1000 pesos Please PM to view. FOR SALE: FAT TIRE BIKE - 26” Mongoose Argus mountain and beach bike. As you know, fat tire bikes are the safest for cobblestone streets. A friend of a friend was injured when her bike tire got caught in between a cobblestone. Some of the water runoff grates are a hazard as well. I bought this bike used for $600 USD ($1100 new) and spent another $150 fixing it up. I added a mirror, gel seat cover, 2 bike locks,

a removable basket, a rear blinker, a massive chain and an air pump. Price is 10000 pesos FIRM. Mongoose MTB aluminum frame and fork, Tektro hydraulic 290 disc brakes and levers. Shimano drivetrain with Shimano M670 rear derailleur and sl-m610 Trigger Shifters, the FSA comet fat tire 100mm wide 24/38 double crank set, FSA bottom bracket and KMC chain make riding and shifting simple and efficient. The 100 mm wide rims with cut Outs alloy disc hubs, stainless steel spokes and Vee rubber mission folding 26 x 4.0 mountain tire round out the wheel set. FOR SALE: Instant On Water Heater, German made instant on water heater. Ready to install. $2000 pesos. Paco WANTED: Mens bicycle, Looking for a mans bicycle large enough for a 6’ 200 lb male. WANTED: Does anyone have a Bike Rack that is sitting around that they are willing to part with? Mike-331-330-1050 WANTED: Home gym, free weights, benches or any weight lifting equipment wanted. Please send private email or call 3334615442. FOR SALE: I have a small, lightly used, Cress sample kiln for sale in Chapala. The inside dimensions are 8 x 8 x 8 inches. It has been used for making beads and small pieces. There is also some utility shelves that come with it and various supplies like cones, shelves, kiln cleaner, etc. Please call or send me an email if you would like to see pictures. Cobra 331.993.8523 krugerrentals@gmail.com WANTED: Mexican family looking for walking machine electric and want to stay safe away from crowds. Call 331 065 0725 WANTED: Looking for a Nokia Lumia 1020 cel phone in good condition and reasonable price. Call Norm at 331 431 7264, email ntihor@hotmail. com. FOR SALE: $8,000 pesos King size bed never been used - includes mattress, box spring and head board. Mexico cell 999-103-7532 or Home phone 376-766-4999 Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico Email: stephenrdavis@hotmail.com WANTED: I am in need of a set of Adjustable Dumbbells. Contact at jmm46@gmx.com FOR SALE: Guitar amplifiers. Trace Elliot Trident custom shop and Guytron GT100FV Randal switch master 150Up for sale to continue to fund my classic car restoration are 2 rare tube amplifiers. The first is a beautiful


trace Elliot custom shop trident H100 head. Finished in blue Python print and white silk it is one of a kind and one of very few 3 channel tube amps ever made. $2000 USD firm cost over $2700 in 1995 dollars for a stand factory green head plus shipping from the UK. The second amp is a Guytron GT100 FV with a pair of matching 1/4 stack cabs. Sold as a set for $3700 USD (over $5000 USD new plus Tax and shipping) This is the modem FV version of this amp which is one of the most unique circut designs ever made, using a class A preamp section with a class A/B power section it allows you to get everything from a fender blackface to a mashall in one amp at any value level! The Third amp is a Randal switch master 150 a 200W combo solid state amplifier with a very clean channel and a single 12” speaker. A very unique sold state with excellent tones. $500 USD. Contact me at 387761-0570 Erik. FOR SALE: Nice old hutch with 2 drawers. Measures 73.5 inches H x 43 W x 12 D. Asking 2500 pesos. Email:  allysoncizekova@gmail.com

FOR SALE: Moving: Frigidaire top of the line. Gas dryer. Like new – white, 18,000 p each, email for pics. Please call 333-966-5657 FOR SALE: Nikon CoolPix L24 digital camera - $2,200 pesos OBO, 14.0 Megapixels for superb image quality, 3.6x Optical Zoom-NIKKOR Glass Lens for sharp clear pictures, Big, Bright 3.0-inch LCD for easy viewing and sharing, Easy Auto Mode simply point and shoot, Vibration Reduction,  Soft Carrying Case – Black, Including extra 16 GB SanDisk Ultra Plus memory card. (Color not as shown) Email:  bfoster100@hotmail. com FOR SALE: Wii Charge Station, Nyoko Charging dock and 2 rechargeable batteries for the Wii remote in original package (does NOT include the Wii remotes). Includes 2 NiMH rechargeable batteries, 6 foot AC power cord and 2 rubberized battery covers. $600mxn. 332-617-3588 or 376-7655085. FOR SALE: Beautiful travertine dining room table for sale. Size: 42”x96”x2” Similar to marble, with matt

black base also beautifully crafted. Sits 10. Wooden chairs optional. Asking 22,000 pesos for table and base only. Please contact Norm at ntihor@ hotmail.com, Cell 331 431 72 64. FOR SALE: Integra DTR 40.2 AVR and Aircom S7 fan, I have an Integra DTR 40.2 for sale. The unit was factory refurbished when I purchased it a little over two years ago. I also have an Aircom cooling fan if the unit is placed in a cabinet. Price is $4,000 pesos. WANTED: Anybody have Wii Fit system for sale? Looking for complete system including balance board. 376765-5046 FOR SALE: Used, heavy duty Makita portable drill, New battery, works perfectly, several speeds and I think, a hammer-drill setting. Has charger that works fine and carrying case. This is a commercial grade drill. $1,200.00 pick up at Chapala Haciendas, #2 1988jeopardychampion@ gmail.com WANTED: Looking for set of men’s dumbbells. jmm46@gmx.com WANTED: I am looking for an AIR BIKE like the Schwin Aerdyne or Assu-

alt BIke or something similar. michael jmm46@gmx.com WANTED: Do to increased traffic during the covid crisis, we have space for large antiques and furniture etc for consignment, protect yourself, we will sell it for you and give you the cash you need. We have the traffic, good lighting, the 17 charities we support are in crisis. Please if you need cash, anything over $150 pesos can be put on consignment. Donations accepted. All items are put under quarantine for 3 days before putting up for sale. If you know some who just recently bought a house, they can sell the furniture they do not want on consignment at Todo Bueno resale and consignment shop next to S and S auto in Riberas. Cell: 331 016 1619 FOR SALE: Original Prada Shoes, size 24.5 Mexican, Only 1 time was used, price $3,000 pesos. Call to Alma 331-005-3109 FOR SALE: Individual Brass Headboard, Price $2,200.00 pesos. Call to Alma 331-005-3109.

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El Ojo del Lago - November 2020  

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