Saturday, December 22, 2007

On this day in: 1808 - In Vienna, Ludwig van Beethoven premieres his Fifth Symphony. 1851 - The first freight train is operated. 1937 - The Lincoln Tunnel opens to traffic in New York City. 1956 - Colo is born, the first gorilla to be bred in captivity.

“How many observe Christ’s birth-day! How few, his precepts! O! ’tis easier to keep Holidays than Commandments.” –Benjamin Franklin

My friend Fred Holden has been emailing out a series of documents intended to inspire civic participation. They are very informative and motivational, take a look at them on Fred’s new website that is in the early stages of construction. See

From The Bend Weekly, Bend, Oregon:

Armando Rodriguez’s autobiography, "From the Barrio to Washington," has just been published by the University of New Mexico Press with a cover photo in color of Armando and wife Beatriz being greeted by a beaming President Jimmy Carter.

An adept amateur wrestler, Rodriguez coached a San Diego State University team to the NCAA's championship round. He was voted State's 1949 "alumnus of the year," edging out such worthies as Art Linkletter. Meanwhile, he had become the first Hispanic to attain administrative status as a principal in the San Diego school system, later the second to serve as a college president (East Los Angeles) and first to serve the entire nation as a presidential appointee to commissions charged with overseeing the enforcement of racial and gender equality.

As many successful people have done, Rodriguez conceived something book publishers call a "vanity" publication - memoirs that a person may publish for family and friends. Vanity or not, the University of New Mexico Press bought Rodriguez's story and is publicizing it nationwide. It chronicles how one man beat the odds, refusing to accept society's judgment that his background alone left him unworthy of advancement…The book reads like Horatio Alger on his way to Yale University. A book launch will start January 17 with a talk and signing at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, 1701 4th Street SW, Albuquerque NM 87102. 505-766-6604.

Inspiring reading, Shadow's story reflects the attitude of a person who, despite such disappointments as his rejection for a college fraternity, never seems to have felt sorry for himself.

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