Colby letter reply
In his letter last week, Ed Colby says he wants Garco commissioners to persuade all the businesses that aren’t mask compliant to mend their ways. You see, Ed says John, Tom and Mike already know who the mask scorers are: “the commissioners speak their lingo. They know the secret handshake.” He also thinks, “Non-mask compliant business owners are part of the commissioners’ loyal political base.”
Ed also doesn’t agree with complaint-driven outreach, ie. enforcement based on consumers’ complaints. No, that would be “tattling,” and “tattling is not how we roll” says Ed. (Wow, Ed rolls, but can he rock?).
Since Ed says he’s got friends who don’t enforce mask protocol, I would think he’d be more persuasive than those nasty Republicans he so obviously disdains. With all those assumptions Ed makes, might I remind Mr. Colby that when we “assume,” we make an ASS out of U and Me. Just saying.
Many of us have heard about the sad news that Robin Sutherland, who has been dealing with cancer and the treatments that go with it, has gone on his final concert tour on Friday the 15th. I want to offer a glimpse into who Robin was and what a remarkable role he played in both the CRMS and Carbondale communities.
I was teaching at CRMS where I had gone to from ’63 to ’66, when Robin first gave a concert in the Barn. He had a good student friend who arranged to have him come up and perform The Goldberg Variations on a Sunday night. Watching this 17-year-old kid in hiking boots and jeans play Bach from memory was a truly remarkable experience! Robin kept returning to CRMS to play over the years as his career went from Juilliard to The San Francisco Symphony where he was their principal pianist for around 40 years. He was awarded an honorary diploma making him a student.
Much as Robin embraced the CRMS community, he also fell in love with Carbondale. He was a fixture at the Mountain Fairs starting in the ‘70s and for years to come as part of the all night Peace Patrol and the Information Booth. He and the late musician Ray Adams were quite a pair on patrol. You would never know from looking at this long-haired hippy-type that he had a whole other life or two!
Robin, to me, epitomizes what has made both CRMS and Carbondale such unique places. He continually gave both his talent and time without taking any reward for himself except our love and admiration. I feel blessed that I was fortunate to be at both his first concert here and, regrettably, his last: the benefit that he did for The Sun at The Redstone Castle. This was just one of the many benefits and memorials that he played over the decades.
Many people pass through life and, like a small pebble being tossed into a pond, leave only a few ripples. Robin left behind many ripples that will go on for a long time. He will be missed.
Love thy neighbor
We realize this has been a very frustrating, challenging and trying year for most of us, but for goodness’ sake, please don’t take your frustrations out on our Carbondale Post Office employees.
Yes, the customer lines are long. Yes, some packages are missing. Yes, Amazon and UPS have unloaded a ton of new packages and deliveries to our 81623 post office. Yes, many Carbondale postal workers have “called in sick” or just walked off the job at this busiest time of the year. Yes, they handle various questions and concerns in various languages. Yes, these are all challenges our newest Postmaster has faced coming into her new position. At least she doesn’t hide in the back of the office, won’t return phone calls and could care less about who is out front unlike our previous Postmasters!
Try and remember that these postal employees are also neighbors, parents and friends. It is so saddening to see the rudeness, tirades and verbal abuse that these people encounter every year at this holiday time. And especially this year, just because there is a plastic shield between you and the window employee, does not make anyone immune to unkind words or actions.
And just like that basket of candy on the post office counter is kindness, so is a smile and a “thank you” to these Carbondale postal employees.
Who knows -it might make your day and theirs too.
Janet and Arvid Johnson
I have been asking myself why Great Nature is making viruses like the coronavirus. Recently, while reading The Sun Magazine, I had an epiphany of sorts.
In this month’s issue, I was reading the interview with Eileen Crist, “On the Consequences of Human Plunder,” in which she posits that our human inability to face up to the environmental crisis is terminal, as in “that’s it for the Earth.”
And there I had my answer: if we can’t modify how we occupy and care for the Earth, then Great Nature, way smarter than Pfizer or Moderna, will simply wipe us clean from the Earth. The dinosaurs didn’t work, so Great Nature got rid of them. It took time, but Great Nature has plenty of time.
They say that the coronavirus is very infectious and… very clever. But, just you wait: something even more clever will appear. At some point life appeared — as if by magic. Either we take care of the Earth, or the Earth will take care of us. Until a wiser species appears, the universe is infinitely patient. I am 83 years old, optimistic and looking forward to getting either my Pfizer or my Moderna immunization.
Either we give up eating meat, using oil for heat and transportation and overpopulating the Earth, or we vanish. It’s au revoir or adieu.
YouthZone continues to receive support
In November, Glenwood Springs Ford and Steve Nilsson invited YouthZone to join them in their Community Partnership campaign which resulted in a $3,250 donation. We also earned $18,725 from those of you who graciously supported us on Colorado Gives Day. Later in December, Krista Klees hosted the Lucky Chances Luncheon where donations made to YouthZone were matched by Slifer, Smith and Frampton totaling $9,610.
In the face of such an unprecedented year, you have stepped up to give our community the services it needs to be healthy and supported. YouthZone continues to receive calls, letters, and drop-ins from individuals who still want to give back and help our youth move forward. It is humbling to be a part of a community that has the motivation to give even when there is so much uncertainty in our day-to-day lives.
YouthZone thanks you for your continued kindness and support this year. We will continue to offer life-changing services to the youth of our valley, and your gifts are what will keep us doing just that. We hope to see you -in person- in the coming year to celebrate the amazing community we are building together. Many thanks and warmest regards this holiday season.
Carol S. Wolff
YouthZone Development Director
The influence of social media
Social media has always been a huge part of our lives and will continue to be.
Growing up, I wasn’t exposed to media until around 8th grade, when I got my first phone. I remember being frustrated with my parents’ choice of waiting to get me a phone so late. It made me feel out of place; I wasn’t grouped in with the majority of the public. Everyone around me was snapchatting and talking about things they had seen on Instagram and I felt excluded from that.
Now that I have social media and it has become a part of my everyday life, I have a better understanding and comparison to what social media can do to a person. At that time, however, I was frustrated. Now, reflecting on the direction my parents choose, I am unconditionally grateful.
I took Political Science this semester with CU, which in itself has intrigued and educated me in a variety of ways. Presently, growing up is not only a struggle due to the pandemic, but a challenge because of the influence that social media has on adolescence.
In taking Political Science, we were required to watch “The Social Dilemma,” a documentary about social media and its impact and powerful influence. The documentary was accurate and alarming based on research done behind the scenes for different apps. By the end, I wanted to delete social media, buy a flip phone, and go against the norms of society. But I didn’t, and here’s why.
Being a high school student at RFHS, I believe I have a good understanding of how social media affects my generation. There is a certain need to feel included, to post that one picture you think makes you look good, to show the world how great your life is. In reality, we are just living through our phones, lacking creativity, and obsessed with what the world thinks of us.
We have become so prone to measuring our self worth in the amount of likes or views we get on a post. No matter how much anyone says it doesn’t affect them, it does. We have become so addicted that deleting an app, such as Snapchat, seems like the scariest decision of our lives. We have found comfort in our phones. It may fill that awkward silence, but it’s also heartbreaking that these apps control our lives.
I’m not saying go off the grid. I’m saying find a balance. Leave your phone at home or in your car and direct your full attention to the world and people around you. Take the time to notice little things, have a meaningful conversation and give that person your undivided attention. Those snapchats will still be there when you get back. Although it may be hard, limit yourself.
People have lived hundreds of years without the technology we have today, so find the power in yourself to overcome the temptations and break the norms of society to rediscover the things that really matter.
Choose the longer line
I grab the keys off the kitchen counter, trying to make as little noise as possible to not disrupt my sleeping parents. I walk toward the garage door and slowly open it. A loud creak from the door sends shockwaves through my spine. It is entirely silent. I dash into the garage, softly closing the door behind me, and jump into my car. Promptly starting the ignition, I pull out of the driveway and pick up my friend who is standing on my street corner.
We are heading to our state capital, a four-hour drive, to protest against police brutality and violence against black people. My heart races and my body gushes with adrenaline. I yearn to speak up against the killing of innocent people. I put my foot on the gas and drive away. My head buzzes with thoughts, and I cannot help but wonder, how did I get here?
Growing up, I was very shy and timid. I rarely spoke up during class for fear of going against others’ opinions or being wrong. I continually stayed quiet, rarely sharing my point of view and always concurring, whether I agreed or not.
An example of this was during my sophomore year of high school, where I was chosen as a test subject in a psychology experiment. I was asked to complete a clerical duty for the teacher, as he drew two lines of varying lengths on the whiteboard. Without my knowledge, the rest of the class was instructed to say the shorter line was longer.
When I arrived back, the teacher asked the class to say which line they thought was longer. Everyone claimed it was the shorter line. When it was my turn to answer, I quickly agreed with everyone else’s opinion, even though I knew it was wrong. When I learned that I had been the subject of a psychology experiment on conformity, I was embarrassed. I knew what I wanted to say, yet I continued to remain on the fence, too shy to jump to one side or the other.
It wasn’t until my junior year that I found my confidence in myself and my voice. While completing an English research project, I chose to study the environmental impacts of the meat and dairy industry. I always considered myself an environmentalist. However, I never voiced it as it was perceived as “nerdy” within my social circle. While learning about the disastrous effects of this industry, I became enraged. A fire lit within. I felt compelled to help make a change for the betterment of the environment. I decided I needed to take action, for I could no longer watch the planet and those on it diminish. The following week, I swiftly joined my school’s Energy Club and switched to a vegetarian lifestyle.
Since then, I have become more driven to live by my morals and values. Over time, I have learned that words are empty without action. I now take initiative on issues I believe are paramount. Whether that is protesting against police brutality at my state capital, joining my school’s energy club to help create a more sustainable world, speaking up during class, or presenting ideas in front of the whole school as Student Body President.
I have finally found my voice and I refuse to be a bystander. I will continue to use my passion to voice my beliefs to achieve a sustainable and equitable planet even if there is discord from others.
Do not get me wrong, it is not simple. I still get jittery and nervous before I speak my mind or take action but I no longer let it suppress me. I have stopped standing idly by for fear of contradicting others’ opinions. I no longer conform. I now leap off the fence onto one side or the other and choose the longer line.
We gather, we laugh, we dance and we sing
We each have a present to give to our King
Now, it’s not something you buy in a store
It’s so much more costly ’cause He deserves more
He deserves much more than money can buy
Although He’d be pleased with a shirt and a tie
He deserves all that we ever could give
He paid the price so forever we’d live
With Him forever, for eternity, with Him for always
That’s His plan for us, you see?
So what is this gift that is fit for a King?
What is more precious to Him than anything?
What is this one thing to Him you could give,
that because of your gift many others might live?
With Him forever in eternity,
with Him for always, that’s his plan for you and me
This gift we can give was to us first given
Until we let go really keeps us from livin’
You won’t find it in a window, in a case or on a shelf
This gift lies inside of you, so please give Him yourself