Letters to the Editor

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Editor: We, at the Alameda Boys & Girls Club, want to give a huge thank you to our many wonderful Corks, Forks, Rhythm & Brews sponsors, donors, vendors, volunteers and attendees!

With your support, the Club was able to host more than 50 food and drink exhibitors from the Bay Area, Northern and Central California, as well as a food, beverage and lifestyle themed online auction. This raises a significant amount of money to help fund programs and services that change the lives of our youth and teen members.

These programs assist in developing skills that these members need to achieve academic and professional success, and become healthy, responsible and contributing members of our community.

We are very excited for next year’s event and hope you will consider joining us again to make it even more successful.

— Jeff Miller CEO

Editor: The value of your gold teeth may have doubled.

Like all Thanksgivings, we should pause to appreciate our conspicuous blessings, particularly those of us who lack the will to depart from California.

Yes, inflation anxiety has driven gold futures up through the class ceiling but remember: those gold fillings you paid less than $900 an ounce for during Reagan Volcker years are now trading at $1,866 per ounce; you are now walking around with a mouthful of capital gains and if you keep your mouth shut, California will not tax you on them.

I think my car has one of those expandible, safari gas tanks. A year ago, I could barely squeeze $30 worth of fossil fuels into the tank; now that same tank holds $50 worth of driving pleasure. While the range has not changed, I am grateful that the recall on the governor was unsuccessful. Additionally, people will think twice before backing the family car out of the garage.

Those of you living in the less temperate zones, as predicted by the US Energy Information Administration (which thank fully tells us how much we are paying for fossil things) your home heating bill will go from $574 to $746.

Two things to keep in mind: when you crank the thermostat down be mindful of your house plants — many varieties cannot tolerate ambient temperatures below 40 degrees Farenheit. But also, be thankful we have an energy czar in the white house instead of some insensitive Republican who doesn’t give a hoot about the welfare of the American People.

The centerpiece of Thanksgiving is the turkey, and those critters are commanding a 22% wage increase over last year. Perhaps this will finally be the year that you listen to the woeful, self-righteous cry of the woke vegans in your family and opt for the tofu turkey over the avian variety. Be grateful for the gentle nudge toward animal rights that the marketplace has provided.

While government spending is up to the fiscal empyrean — soon no one will have to set an alarm clock — it does not look like we are paying for it because the cost is either zero or invisible — take your pick. Let us give thanks for what Milton Friedman called the hidden tax of inflation and be grateful for the new profligacy and the higher debt ceiling.

Hopefully, your appetite will not be curbed by any of the developments or trajectories; be glad you are not living in Denmark, the highest tax nation, and you are safely one notch below that. Bone Appetite.

— Jeffrey R. Smith Retired Lieutenant Commander USN Math teacher at Encinal High School.

The Alameda Sun received a copy of this letter addressed to Mastick Senior Center.

Editor: Over the years, we have seen numerous issues with Mastick Senior Center’s exercise class. This is a pattern that continues today. Given that the Social Hall, by Alameda Fire Department criteria, can accommodate 100 or more people, and in the past fitness classes had more than 75 exercising seniors, why can’t this facility accommodate more than 30 exercising masked seniors?

Seniors need to exercise. I have seen the demise of many seniors during the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. I do not believe that their demise was due to COVID-19. I think that it was the lack of exercise, and the lack of social contact may have also contributed. Both of these issues are solved by attending Mastick’s exercise classes and the Senior Center should not have a wait list. It should be doing everything in its power to allow every senior the opportunity to exercise and have a little social interaction.

The popularity of the exercise class is uncontestable. Seniors have waited patiently for the end of the pandemic to resume their lives. This class figured very prominently in their lives. They were caught by surprise that the enrollment cap of 30 seniors would be reached in such short time. Suddenly, there was no space for them.

At the re-opening of the Senior Center in September, I voiced a concern about the limited number of seniors being allowed in the fall class. Apparently my concern was not taken to heart.

I do not wish to bring negative attention to my senior center. But I am frustrated at knowing I will be fielding calls from disappointed seniors who were unable to pay for the exercise class some have been taking for 10 years, and now cannot join due to the low number of seniors being allowed to register for the exercise class.

We just went thru the fall class with no issues. Things have gotten better. Yet the numbers and attitude for the winter class does not reflect our progress from the fall classes.

The Center’s refusal to allow seniors into a class some require for their health, longevity, and quality of life, is beyond comprehension. There is a fine line between enjoying your authority and exercising responsibility.

— M. M. Manown