Tag Archives: west sacramento news

Shouldn’t have saved my college papers

BY DARYL FISHER, News-Ledger Features Editor

BY DARYL FISHER, News-Ledger Features Editor

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 15, 2013 —

COLUMN BY DARYL FISHER —

The other night my youngest son was helping me clean out an extra bedroom where I store lots of old stuff when he came across a box with the word “College” scribbled on the outside of it.

“What’s this?” he asked me as he opened the box and began thumbing through the discolored papers inside it.

“I think it’s just a bunch of old homework assignments I did way back when I was in college,” I answered.

“Boy, Dad, I only see one `A’ in here. The rest are mostly ‘C’s.”

“I was never much of a student,” I admitted. “Which paper did I get the `A’ on?”

“It looks like it was a report or something on one of Thoreau’s books. Were you into Thoreau when you were young?”

“Everyone was into Thoreau back in the late ‘60s when I was going to college. We all wanted to move to Walden Pond and build ourselves a cabin and live the simple life.”

“Why?”

“Who knows? It was a long time ago. If I remember right, we were going to change the world.”

“Well, since it looks like it was your only `A’ paper, do you want me to read some of it to you? It’s not very long.”

“Sure.”

“Henry David Thoreau’s Walden contains  one important insight after another,” began my son,  “and what immediately draws the reader’s attention is the fact that the man responsible for those insights was considered an undistinguished loafer by those who thought they knew him best, a man who died a failure by contemporary standards of success.  So maybe Walden’s first important insight is that important insights are often hiding out in places where one would least expect to find them.

“Thoreau, a sometimes teacher, pencil maker, surveyor and handyman, explains with clarity and simplicity that there is much more to life than the mind-dulling repetition of factory life.  So the second important insight I find in Walden is that any life directed towards money and endless toil is a life directed towards death.

“The third important insight I can think of comes from Thoreau’s belief that one can resist the debilitating effects of the industrial revolution by reducing his or her needs to the barest essentials of life, and by establishing an intimate, spiritual relationship with nature.  One needs only to consider turning back the clock to a more simple, agrarian way of living.  Thoreau tells us that our only real needs are clothing, food, shelter, and fuel.

“Number four comes from the way Thoreau looked at work.  He considered all work honorable and worked hard at those tasks he gave himself, but he also believed that we all need to reduce the time necessary to support ourselves.  I think he would have agreed with the way Camus once put it: `It is normal to give part of your life so as not to lose it entirely.  Six or eight hours a day so as not to die of hunger. And then everything is profit to those who know how to profit from it.’

“Fifth, in Chapter One, Thoreau reminds us that a major hindrance to personal growth and happiness is `The blind acceptance of traditional, conventional ways of living as handed down by previous generations.  Too many individuals unquestioningly accept what their parents and grandparents believed to be the meaning of life.’  What a great insight that is — that each new generation needs to reinvent the world all over again.

“Sixth, that we can know God through nature, and that `each man, through the potential power of his intellect, has the ability to become god-like.’
“Seventh, that we often allow life to be `frittered away by detail.’ In Chapter Two, the narrator cries out, `Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!  I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand.’

“Eighth, that `Books are the treasured wealth of the world and the fit inheritance of generations and nations.’  In other words, good books can set us free.  He also warns that we shouldn’t waste our time reading worthless, repetitive gossip and that shabby literature can create only shabby minds.  Like the old Pete Seeger song says, we should try to avoid filling our heads with `garbage, garbage, garbage.’

“Ninth, in Chapter Four, I liked the way the narrator thinks of railroads and trains as the enemy and says, `I will not have my eyes put out and my ears spoiled by its smoke and steam and hissing.’  The American Indian, who looked upon life and the earth much as Thoreau did, also understood early on that locomotives were bringing death to their world.

“Tenth, in Chapter Five, Thoreau hints that `in the gentle, benevolent, revitalizing company of nature, loneliness is an irrelevant concern.’  Since we’re all born and die alone, locked inside our own heads, that is an interesting and hopeful insight indeed.

“Eleventh, that `wherever a man goes, men will pursue him and paw him with their dirty institutions.’

“Twelfth, that we are all capable of surviving our own `spiritual winters.’

“And finally, that `If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.  Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.’

“Jeez, Dad,” said my son with a smile after he had finished reading and returned my ancient book report back into the box where he found it, “even way back in your college days you were pretty much full of s___, weren’t you?”

“Yeah, pretty much.”

 

  Do you like what you see here?

  You can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

 

Library: you can check out a toy

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER —

Check out a toy from the library!

The toy library is available with safe, educational and fun toys, at the library, 1212 Merkley Avenue, West Sacramento. Hours are Tuesdays noon-2 p.m., Wednesdays 4-6 p.m. and Saturdays noon-2 at 1212 Merkley Avenue. You can be a member for $15/year.

Sponsored by Child Care Services.

 Copyright News-Ledger 2013

Food giveaway today in West Sac

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 15, 2013 —

The Yolo County Food Bank will distribute free food in West Sacramento and Clarksburg on May 21, according to the following schedule: 9-10 a.m. at the county building, 500 Jefferson Blvd.; 10:30-11:15 a.m. at Trinity Presbyterian Church, 1500 Park Blvd.; 11-noon at the Yolo Housing Authority, 685 Lighthouse Drive; and noon-1 p.m. at the Clarksburg Firehouse.

Please bring a bag and attend only one site. For information: (530) 668-0690.

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

Yolo jail inmate dies in custody

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE  — MAY 20, 2013 —

The Yolo County Sheriff’s Department reported today that an inmate died on Saturday while in custody at the county jail in Woodland.

The man, 29-year old Todd Alexander Phillips, was in custody since April 12 “for various felony and misdemeanor offenses,” said a statement from Lieutenant Dale Johnson of the sheriff’s office.

A correctional officer noticed Phillips was “agitated and upset” at about 12:49 p.m. that afternoon.

“Phillips was lying on the side of his bed having labored breathing,” according to Johnson. “He was placed in restraints for safety reasons. Medical staff inside the facility was notified and responded and they immediately notified emergency medical personnel from outside the facility. Phillips was transported to the Woodland Memorial Hospital. Ultimately, efforts to revive Phillips failed, and he was pronounced dead at the hospital.”

The sheriff’s office will further investigate, reported Johnson.

  You can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

Port: major lease, strategy change

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 15 —

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

The Port of West Sacramento is set to make a fundamental change in its operating model today, as its governing board considers a proposal to lease its North Terminal maritime facilities to a private company on May 16.  The proposed lease to SSA Pacific, Inc., would be a major step towards making the government-run facility into a “landlord” port.

With years of years of annual deficits and diminishing options to cover the port’s losses (averaging 33-43 percent of gross during recent years), the port commission in March voted to adopt the “landlord” strategy. The switch is meant to replace the vagaries of shipping income with a steady rent check from a private master leaser.

Annual rent in the proposed five-year deal is set at $650,000, increasing at a one percent annually. After five years, SSA would have the option to extend the deal another five years, and after that, the lease could be extended still further for up to 10 years if both parties agree.

The deal also would forgive $850,000 in port debt to SSA, which is already a marine operator at the port. The proposed lease promises additional revenue for the port if certain shipping income targets are hit.

The lease would allow the Port of West Sacramento to cut overhead such as administrative costs.

The Port of West Sacramento has had trouble both diversifying its cargo – rice remains a mainstay – and pursuing successful real estate projects.

“We’re at a point where if we don’t have an option that will work for sure, we are facing the option of closing,” said West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon, a member of the port commission, at the commission’s March 13 meeting.

That was the meeting at which the commission opted to make a number of dramatic changes and move towards becoming a landlord operation.

On Monday, the News-Ledger asked him if the new master lease achieves what the port hoped for when the port solicited interested firms for the job.

“Yes,” he said. “At the minimum, we will have a viable entity for the near term,” answered Cabaldon.

The lease will “get the port out of the red,”  he added.

  EDITOR’S NOTE: you can find an earlier article explaining the port’s decision to change its business model here.

 

  Do you like what you see here?

  You can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

 

Firefighters put out trailer fire, take part in simulated West Sacramento flood

This trailer being used as a residence on Walnut Street was described as a 'total loss' after a May 5 fire. (courtesy of the West Sacramento Fire Department.)

This trailer being used as a residence on Walnut Street was described as a ‘total loss’ after a May 5 fire. (courtesy of the West Sacramento Fire Department.)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 15, 2013 —

West Sacramento’s firefighters responded to a burning travel trailer (above) on May 5. The trailer at 744 Walnut Street was being used as a residence.

They controlled the fire in about 10 minutes, but the trailer and its contents were determined to be “a total loss,” reports the department.

___________________________________

In other action, the fire department joined the city department of public works, city hall personnel, the Yolo County Emergency Services director, state Department of Water Resources and other personnel from April 22-25 for “Operation Noah’s Ark.”

The operation used computers and field exercises to simulate the crisis of a “slow-rise” flood in West Sacramento produced by “the convergence of storm runoff, controlled dam releases, high tidal influence and sloughage of the levee at the Bryte Bend.”

Participants practiced their resource deployment and public information strategies.

 

  Do you like what you see here?

  You can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

 

Help plan Veterans Day Parade

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 15, 2013 —

The Bryte & Broderick Community Action Network will hold an organizational meeting for this year’s West Sacramento Veterans Day Parade at 6 p.m. on May 20 in the local library, 1212 Merkley Avenue.

Any person, business or other organization interested in supporting or assisting the parade plan is invited. For information, contact Alicia Cruz, (916) 640-3677.

 

  Do you like what you see here?

  You can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2013