My very first job was working at a home for physically and developmentally disabled children. I started out in the laundry room, then worked my way to the kitchen and, finally, became a certified nurse's aide.
There was a moment that stood out during my 10-year high school reunion last weekend. It happened after people had some food and a few drinks, and the banquet hall was overwhelmed with loud chatter and pop-fueled '90s music. I was standing next to a friend and said the first thing that came to mind.
Ten years ago, I was nervously sitting in the back row of my high school graduating class. I had to, since my last name put me there. Why was I nervous? Was it because I was scared about the life I was going to lead in the coming years? No. I was nervous because I didn't want to trip and fall after I was handed my fake diploma in front of so many faces I'd gotten used to in the previous four years.
Of the only man ever elected four times to the White House, the historian James MacGregor Burns wrote: "If other leaders bent under the burdens of power, Roosevelt shouldered his with zest and gaiety. He loved being president. ... The variegated facets of the presidential job called for a multitude of different roles, and Roosevelt moved from part to part with ease and confidence." FDR's optimism was contagious. Americans, the most optimistic of people, have historically been attracted to optimistic leaders. Three years into Ronald Reagan's presidency - following major economic dislocations and international tensions - the Gallup Poll found that ...
The Gulf oil spill has shown us just one of the downsides of petroleum. That makes the mind of even a geologist like me turn to several questions about the future. Could we Americans grow more of our own fuel – enough to run a number of our cars, trucks and airplanes? And, quite importantly, could we do so without displacing food crops like corn?
Good news. The folks in charge of such things announced this week that the recession is over. Actually, it's been over for some time. It officially ended in June 2009, according to the Business-Cycle Dating Committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research, which is responsible for making such determinations. As of then, our national output stopped declining and started increasing, along with a number of other key indicators.
A decade ago I retreated to a mountain cabin with a group of professional women. One thing led to another and soon we were having a bonding experience that I'll never forget - absent the "Kumbaya" song and campfire.
After three years, California State University, Stanislaus' 50th anniversary celebration is finally coming to an end.
In an effort to bring Cunningham Elementary's dismal tests scores up, the Turlock Unified School District administration decided to use the turnaround model at the school voluntarily - before test scores dropped so much it became state mandated.
Jerry Brown has a secret plan to balance the California state budget. When the state attorney general and Democratic gubernatorial nominee recently visited the San Francisco Chronicle's editorial board, he brought with him a large three-ring binder with his ideas on how to bring state spending back into the black. But he wouldn't tell us what was in the book.
On Thursday afternoon I let my fingers do the walking - but not through the Yellow Pages. Instead I spent some time reading the "Guinness World Book of Records."
Here's a really bad idea: Burn the Koran to send a message.
As a Midwest transplant, one thing I have found to be true with most Californians is their love of travel. Many of my neighbors and co-workers spend their weekends sightseeing, attending festivals and enjoying the great outdoors all around the state.
I'm going to let the cat out of the bag…my given name is Pina. Pennie is my nickname. I was named after Grandpa Pino and my maiden name is Skittone. Have you guessed that I'm Italian? I'm proud of my family heritage and yes, Skittone Road in Modesto was named after my Great Uncle Johnny.
The disaster in the Gulf has been plenty grim. I don't envy paymaster Kenneth Feinberg who has now taken over BP's $20 billion compensation fund. Feinberg is no stranger to trying to compensate those who have lost much, including the families affected by Sept. 11, 2001, and a somewhat lower-profile project to compensate victims of the shootings at Virginia Tech.
A good friend of mine, Phil Alfano, Superintendent of Patterson Schools, has created an exceptional collaborative model between education, business, economic development and government to prepare young people for jobs in the growing logistics industry in Patterson. This past week a group of educators and businesspeople traveled with Phil to Southern California to check out the Norco Logistics Center, a similar collaborative in Riverside County. On the way back to Stanislaus County, Alfano spoke to a group in Kern County to share his experiences building the coalition in Patterson. Imitation is the greatest form of flattery. Phil is working directly ...
Water. Wheat. Railroad. Prosperity. These are the words at the feet of the Central Park statue that honors one of Turlock's earliest farmers and our city's founder, John Mitchell.
Berkeley doesn't want you to smoke.
There is a fine line between being cautious and paranoia.
Get ready. The drought just became real for millions of our fellow Californians. They're going to start asking more questions about water use. For our part, farmers need to be ready to address those questions, honestly and forthrightly.
Once upon a time in a quaint little place called California a young person between 16 and 17 years of age could get an entry level job with ease.
It's easy to take a sports story, give it the Disney treatment and get an entire theater full of people clapping at the end.
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