The Flywheel

January 23, 2015

NEXT MEETING: January 23, 2015

Giving Back: The Golden State Warriors Community Foundation

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Jose Gordon, Executive Director of the Warriors Community Foundation, will share an overview of his work to establish the Warriors Community Foundation under the new Lacob-Guber ownership group, and will highlight recent community engagement efforts in Richmond. The Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Golden State Warriors.  As Executive Director, Jose is responsible for fundraising and charitable investments, including grants, basketball court refurbishments, and ticket donations. Previously, Jose served as Senior Director of Development Communications for the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health in Palo Alto. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and American Studies from Stanford University.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Stacey Street talked about the inaugural Richmond Rotary Club Winter Party to be held on Saturday, January 31, 2015, at the Bubbaloo Café event center, 1402 Marina Way South in Richmond. Cocktails will start flowing at 6:30pm and dinner will be at 7:30pm, with dancing to follow (same great band as last year). Per-person cost for the evening (including dinner) is $75 with a special price of $37.50 per person for those just interested in dancing and socializing. As always, submit payment to David Brown.
  • Henry Moe reminded everyone about the 8th Annual Richmond Rotary Crab Feed to be held on Saturday, February 7, at Salesian High School (same room as always). Cocktail hour begins at 6pm and dinner at 7pm. Tickets are $40 per person, payable in advance to David Brown.
  • Alan Baer put a flyer on tables announcing the special ribbon cutting and mixer scheduled for the opening of Kamza Sushi Palace in the Pacific East Mall, 3288 Pierce Street in Richmond on Wednesday, January 21, from 4:30pm to 7pm. The Richmond Chamber of Commerce and BARSHEEP Rotary Clubs are participating.
  • Alan Blavins had a reminder about the special Rotary Night at the Masquers Playhouse in Point Richmond on Thursday, January 29. The performance of “There Goes the Bride”, a British Comedy, will begin at 8pm. Tickets are $25 each, with a large part of ticket proceeds going to Albany Rotary as part of their annual theater fund raiser. In order to get that proper “British” look and feel, our own Alan Blavins did the painting of set scenery for the play.
  • Hank Covell reported that Ralph Hill is done with radiation treatment for now and is doing well while resting and recovering at the Senior Care Center in El Sobrante. It was also reported that Sid Chauvin is home and feeling better after dealing with some heart problems and water retention. Calls and messages left for both gents would be welcomed and appreciated.
  • Felix Hunziker announced that there will be upcoming tree-planting opportunities for the hearty and the kibitzers on February 15 and again in mid-March. On February 15, the gathering will start at 8:30am at the corner of 28th Street and Downer Avenue in Richmond’s North & East Neighborhood. Richmond Rotary is partnering with local organizations, Richmond Trees and Groundwork Richmond, as part of the City’s ongoing program to beautify and upgrade local neighborhoods and parks. Sign up with Felix and stay tuned for more information. (Past tree-plantings were enjoyed by all who joined in!)

MEETING OF January 16, 2015

Welcome

President Stoney Stonework called the meeting to order at the Richmond Country Club and Tom Waller led the pledge of allegiance. Stoney asked for a moment of silence for freedom, peace, and justice on earth. Alan Blavins offered this thought for the day: A smile is a curve that can set most things straight.

Visiting Rotarians and Guests

  • Mac Lingo was visiting from the Berkeley Rotary Club and he commented that Richmond Rotary has interesting speaker programs,
  • Josh Genser’s guest was James Richardson, a local CPA and prospective Richmond Rotary Club member.

Special Events

Stoney introduced for the first time from Rotary International headquarters in Evanston a special new pin/button to be presented to an existing member who brings a new member into the Club. The first Richmond Rotary recipient for 2015 is Josh Genser for bringing forward James Richardson for Club membership.

Recognitions and Happy and Sad Dollars

  • Connie Tritt offered some sad dollars for her favored Oregon Ducks, who didn’t fare well in the NCAA Football Championship game with Ohio State University.
  • Erle Brown also offered less than praise for the Ohio State winners.
  • Stoney, an Ohio State alumnus, jumped in with happy dollars and some expected commentary on the football game. He went on at some length about being embarrassed for several years about the Buckeyes’ play. Now, as he put it, there shouldn’t be any doubt about who has the best team in the country. After all, Ohio State beat both of the other top-ranked teams (Alabama and Oregon).
  • Jim Young had some happy dollars for the “all clear” report from his doctor (no signs of cancer returning after the latest surgery). Jim’s looking forward to going on one of the Rotary International project trips in the next six months.
  • Josh Genser was happy about heading out on his first-of-2015 fly-fishing expedition after purchasing some related toys at a recent consumer show. He wasn’t so happy about having to buy Chevron’s Joe Lorenz a nice bottle of single-barrel whiskey for winning the bet in that NCAA Football Championship game.

PROGRAM

Tambourines, Triangles and Trout!

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Stacey Street introduced professional musician, Victor Avdienko, a percussionist who offered us a fun and informative session about tambourines, triangles, and trout. There were lots of “gee-I-didn’t-know-that” moments.

Victor regularly performs with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and has also performed with a variety of well-known artists like Johnny Mathis, Paul Simon, and Sheryl Crow. Besides being active with music-in-schools programs, he also has served for nine years as Music Director for the California Shakespeare Festival.

The tambourine is one of the oldest percussion instruments and is mentioned in the Bible. The triangle (a classic “idiophone”, which creates sound by vibrating without the use of strings or membranes) is believed to have originated with the Turks. Its sound was associated with terror and military activities. Beethoven broke the triangle’s stereotype and introduced it as an instrument to also convey merriment.

With over 30 tambourines and 12 triangles in his personal collection (each of them unique), Victor showed several of his favorites to demonstrate the wide variety of sounds that can be created from different device materials and construction as well as musician technique.

As Victor told us, the diverse sounds enable appropriate rhythms, interpretations, and moods in the “story-telling” of a musical composition, not unlike what a painter does with color variation on a canvas. The tambourine and triangle contribute to and punctuate the often emotional roller-coaster ride of a musical score, helping to take the listener alternatively through waves of highs and lows, from the joyful to the menacing.

It’s interesting to contemplate the sometimes terrifying nature of playing the tambourine or triangle with a symphony. While the violinist during a concert may play thousands of notes that blend with others, the tambourine or triangle percussionist can very much stand out with that one shot to get it right (or not), to “play” the instrument in exactly the right way at exactly the right time.

As for trout, Victor pointed out that “scales” are a common connection between fishing and music. But there’s more to it than that. He long ago developed a strong desire to improve his fly casting skills in order to achieve the magic of catching fish, not unlike his motivation for increasing his skills at playing the right notes in order to achieve the magic of making music. Now that’s a keeper!


Tom Waller, Rotating Scribe