Thursday, April 17, 2003
In addition, U.S. foreign policy must somehow begin to rectify the untold damage to our reputation it has caused among the rest of the world--the rest of the entire world. Whitewashed, myopic media coverage of the events leading up to and during this "war" have excluded all objective reporting, leading to a partially educated American populace. Embedded reporters have naturally become ride-along cheerleaders for the outfits they are covering. There has not been any footage of the true horrors of all armed conflict outside of exploding buildings and smoldering tanks.
The next few months will be critical if America is once again going to shine as the beacon of freedom for frightened and oppressed people everywhere. Only the most careful and determined handling of the Iraq situation and its aftermath will begin to purify our country''s deservedly lofty reputation.
FEEDING THE HUNGRY...One organization with a deservedly lofty reputation is the Food Bank of Monterey County. As an organization dedicated "to lead community efforts in the awareness and elimination of hunger in Monterey County," it has been instrumental in providing food for thousands of needy folks. In fiscal year 2002 it delivered 6 million pounds of life-sustaining food to 10,807 different clients. Of those clients, 65.6 percent struggle with monthly household incomes of less than a thousand dollars, so it is obvious just how important the Food Bank is.
Please take a few minutes to log onto the official website www.food4hungry.org to find out about this wonderful organization and see how you can help by donating food or time or money or ideas. While our eyes are focused on the world outside our shores, it is important to remember that our own neighbors here in Monterey County also need relief from hunger and fear.
For those of you electronically impaired: Food Bank for Monterey County, 815 West Market Street #5, Salinas, CA 93901. Phone, from Salinas; 758-1523. From Monterey Peninsula; 372-7843. Toll-free in Monterey County; 1-800 367-3663.
One way to donate food to the Food Bank is with the U.S. Postal Service. On Saturday, May 10 there will be a one-day food drive. Any non-perishable food items left at your mailbox will be picked up by your mail carrier and delivered to the Food Bank. If that ain''t easy enough I don''t know what is. Thanks to all the postal workers for hauling the goods.
Also thanks to ConAgra Foods for donating a van to the Food Bank to help with delivery and distribution to the more rural areas of the county. If you would like to help out, the Food Bank needs part-time drivers. Call Bob Stickles, 758-1523.
FRIENDLY FISHWIFE...Along the lines of organizations with solid moral and ethical foundations, the always-praiseworthy dynamic duo Julio and Marie Perucca-Ramirez was presented with the award for Business of the Year by the Seaside/Sand City Chamber of Commerce. Their wonderful Fishwife Seafood Cafe was honored by the Chamber for the role it plays in the communities of Sand City and Seaside by providing jobs, offering scholarships to local high school students, supporting local charities, creating a standard of excellence and quality in the restaurant business and being committed to the economic future of the area. I couldn''t have put it any better myself. Right on Julio and Marie and all the hardworking folks at Fishwife.
PARAISO PICNIC...Paraiso Vineyards, that jewel of a winery down in the Paraiso Springs section of Monterey County, has created a great events facility where groups of up to 190 people can meet, greet, eat, dance their happy feet and party or lecture the day and night away. The setting is beautiful, overlooking the Salinas Valley and surrounded by magnificent vineyards and the rustic charm of that region. There is a gourmet kitchen on hand so scrumptious eats can be prepared on premises to serve with the fabulous Paraiso Vineyards wines. Sounds like a good spot for Sweet Thing and myself to get hitched. Only, where would we find that many people to invite? Call Jennifer Murphy-Smith at 678-0300 or email her at email@example.com. See ya.
--usher in spring at firstname.lastname@example.org.