As I write this latest version of "As Lakewood Rotary Turns," I have just returned from another rousing game of T-ball, where I am coach for a group of 4 and 5 year olds. Two of my team members chose to run to the pitcher's mound after hitting the ball instead of first base.  All three times they hit. Little Cole was so kind as to actually pick up his own hit ball and hand it to the pitcher. Politeness counts for something. Tom Hanks is famous for uttering, "There's no crying in baseball!" He was wrong. And thru all of that one solid hour of barely controlled chaos, everything ended up exceedingly well: snacks awaited each and every participant, and they were happy.
Now, I'm not sure why this description of controlled chaos comes to mind as I write about another Lakewood Rotary meeting. After all, no one cried at Lakewood Rotary on Friday. Maybe it was the happy faces after snack time. At any rate, Rose rang the meeting to order right on time, with Bob Peterson delivering the invocation, and Mo Sarram leading the pledge to the flag, while Rose followed up with news about Rotary Action Groups. These are specialists working together to help Rotary clubs with projects. They could be specialists in dementia, endangered species, addiction prevention, or many other areas of expertise. Rose plans on volunteering, and she also plans on volunteering Chris Kimball. Not sure where he stands on it. If you're interested, talk to Rose!
But before all that, it should be noted that it really would have been chaos without the setup by Rob Erb and Duncan Cook. Superb job, as usual! Phil Eng was taking photographs that clearly show a great talent, while Leon Titus strong-armed folks for a remarkable $1359 in Paul Harris donations. Mark "Birthday Boy" Edgecomb sold raffle tickets, and Tom Crabill was the able passer of the microphone and money collector. Rob Erb declared definitively the absence of any visiting Rotarians, but there were two regular-type visitors, both named Selden: Sharon, wife of Rick, and Jeff, son of Rick (and later corrected to be son of Sharon as well). And Jeff is also the brother of Gayle, which is presumably not a surprise to anyone. John Forkenbrock said "No Sunshine!" even though the sun was out. A clear case of denial.
And speaking of Chris Kimball, the great Casey Stengel explained long ago why Chris was doomed to never be a successful professional baseball player:
"They say some of my stars drink whiskey, but I have found that ones who drink milkshakes don't win many ball games."
And then the business of Rotary really kicked into gear:
:TedWier announced the planned cleanup of the playground equipment at Ft. Steilacoom for Tuesday, May 16, commencing at 9 a.m.  Two teams of three will work on shingle repair, and two teams of two will work on pressure washing. Please email or call Ted so he can properly organize his troops.
:Eric Quinn needs bulletin writers and photographers. It's fun! You can say anything you want, fake news or real, nobody checks! Same with the photography. Who do you want to embarrass today? Your call!
:Steve Enquist announced but two weeks until the Million Dollar Paul Harris Gala. Semi-formal, tuxedo optional, and evening attire for the ladies. Call Steve immediately if you want to be included, before the tickets go outside the club. And there's more: we need nominations for the Bernie Ootkin Award (non-Rotarians demonstrating Service Above Self). Contact Mick Johnson.
:Gayle Selden sent out a big "Thank-you!" to her committee on the Auction. The auction that produced a record $146,262.50 in gross revenue, $24,000 more than last year's superb total. Raise the Paddle for the amphitheater tiles raised $17,950 (usually $11,000 or so for Raise the Paddle). Please provide feedback to the auction committee. Way to go, everyone!!
:President Rose announced that the Board had accepted the resignation of President-elect Andrew Neiditz from next year's presidency. His work situation has gone bonkers, to use the technical term, and with great upset Andrew felt that he could not do a proper job as president in 2017-18. As per the club's by-laws, the Board-elect voted Don Daniels to move up one year to be president in 2017-18, instead of 2018-19. And Rose also announced that the Russians are coming, the Russians are coming. Still need about 4 host families, to provide a bed and breakfast for a week or a portion thereof, along with transport in the morning to a local site for bus pickup. May 23-30
From legendary play by play broadcaster, Jerry Coleman:
“Winfield goes back to the wall, he hits his head on the wall and it rolls off! It’s rolling all the way back to second base. This is a terrible thing for the Padres.”
 Mark Edgecomb's birthday was this very day! 55! And he missed the recognition recently of his 29th wedding anniversary to the stupendous Nicola, so he gave $85 toward his Paul Harris.
Gordon Quick gave $20 as a thank-you to the Bulletin Committee, who selflessly keep the old people informed. (But we also try and inform the young people, too. Which Gordy is not.) Gordy noted that he'd give more, but that was his last twenty dollar bill, to which the peanut gallery responded, "That's the 300th time he's given his last twenty dollar bill!!"
Jim Bisceglia returned from Palm Desert, which meant $50 for the club.
Peter Marsh was in Rancho Mirage, which he said was not as nice as Palm Desert, and so he gave $15.
Sharon Selden was called upon to celebrate the visit of son Jeff, but Rick rushed to her rescue with an appropriate amount of $40.
Tom Crabill has a grandson who received two scholarships to Pepperdine. He remitted $20.
Mary Marlin won Heads or Tails at the auction (a $500 price, less the $10 entry), and gave $10.
Eric Quinn bought the Tahiti trip (many thanks Bob Hammar and committee!) for his honeymoon, and paid only $20: he noted that he might be dragged off the airplane, so will pay more if he actually gets there.
“I walk into the clubhouse today and it’s like walking into the Mayo Clinic. We have four doctors, three therapists and five trainers. Back when I broke in, we had one trainer who carried a bottle of rubbing alcohol, and by the 7th inning he’d already drunk it.”—Tommy Lasorda
Sally Porter Smith introduced Lakewood's Mama Lion, Dee Ann Bennett, president of Lakewood First Lions club (Lakewood's first service club, 1954). In 1996, the McChord Gate area (later called Springbrook) was described as a place to "get high, get laid, or get drunk." A 9-year old girl was murdered there that year, which was one giant outrage too much. Larry Saunders and others said "no more," and began the long journey to make things better. Lakewood Rotary's project in 1999 was $50,000 to help make the park in Springbrook, along with lots of "sweat equity." The Lions and Rotary have been working hard ever since. The latest project, spearheaded by Dee Ann and Sally, involves $4,000 from Lions and $7,000 from us ($3500 plus a $3500 District Matching Grant). This goes toward a three day per week summer camp for about 100 kids, June 26 to August 18. The goal: create summer memories.  So much is being done there, but so much remains to be done. Onward and upward!
Above, from the left: Presenter, Dee Ann Bennett; Sally Smith; and President Rose Stevens
And the drawing was won by Denise Yochum with #9232120. But alas, only a white chip emerged after her valiant thrust into the purple bag. $5.00.
And my favorite, from the great Casey Stengel:
"The key to being a good manager is keeping the 5 guys who hate me away from the 4 who are still undecided."
So Let's Play Ball!
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And remember also: If you read this bulletin, and you missed this meeting, email Secretary Greg with notification of this, and you'll receive a makeup credit! Easy! And you stay informed without even attending the meeting.