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FRUITCAKE: Do what is Right And Be Content

By Jerry Bernstein

My Friend from Fruitcake, Florida looked sad as he walked into the office. “Is something wrong?” I asked. “You look like you lost your best friend.”
“I was going over some of my files when I was recently in Fruitcake and found this poem written by one Brian Watkins, a member of the Montgomery, Alabama Fire Department. It was written in memory of the firefighters who gave up their lives on the 9-11 attack on the twin towers in their attempt to get people out of the towers.
“I think the entire country not only felt their loss but also for the people who were trapped in the towers as well as the victims in the airplanes that crashed into them. “I said.
You know,” he said, “I sometimes wonder if we Americans take too many things for granted.”
“Like what?” I asked.
“Well for one thing, here in California we expect our leaders in Sacramento to do what is right. For instance, our schools have been downgraded into the bottom third in the country. Most Districts have cut back because the state legislature and the governor refuse to tackle the economic problems facing the state.”
“Wait a minute,” I said, “The governor has a tax increase on the November ballot that will reduce the budget deficit by approximately $9 billion.”
“I know,” my Friend from Fruitcake, said. That leaves a deficit balance of approximately $7 billion. How is that going to be covered? he asked.
I looked at my friend and replied, “I don’t really know.”
“What gives me hope,” he said, “is a little city like Hawaiian Gardens that is giving your local school district $88,500 thousand so their kids can go to summer school. They didn’t have to do that, but the city council takes seriously the city’s motto “Our Youth is our Future.”
“Hawaiian Gardens is a small city, nine-tenth of a square mile, and it has a casino that provides revenue and keeps the city’s budget balanced and puts money into the city reserve.” I said. “Most important the city council believes it’s important that their children attend summer school.”
“That leads me to another subject.” my Friend from Fruitcake said. “What’s going to happen at ABC, now that the court has ruled the “evidence” used against the former Stower’s principal Eileen Blagden, to remove her from her job as principal at Stower’s Elementary School was ruled as being fabricated by the Superior Court?
“I don’t know,” I replied, The District and Mrs. Blageden are meeting July 17 at Mandatory Settlement Conference. Hopefully they’ll reach agreement on a settlement. If not the case will go to trial.”
“My Friend from Fruitcake, Florida asked what happened to the teacher.”
“I understand he had moved to northern California.”
“That’s what we were told,” I replied, “but when we last checked, he was still residing in Long Beach.”
My Friend from Fruitcake, Florida looked at me. This brings me back to the poem I found in my files,” he said.
How’s that? I asked.
The poem is entitled “Giving a Life.” It starts as follows:
“It’s twenty past the hour now
The stations neat and clean.
They’ve had their morning exercise,
Their bodies are tough and lean.
They know their job’s to Serve and Protect.
Sometimes they just can’t wait.
But none of them knew what was near
On that September date.”
He paused and said. Shouldn’t the District staff and superintendent worked with the principal instead of sweeping it under the rug. Where were the firemen to protect the principal, school staff and most of all the school children?
“I don’t know,” I replied.
“I’ll tell you where they were,” he said. They were too busy protecting themselves, lifting the rug so they could swept the problem under the rug.”
The allegory was correct, but I decided not to say anything. After a few minutes, my Friend from Fruitcake, Florida got up from his chair and left.

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2 Responses to FRUITCAKE: Do what is Right And Be Content

  1. Gma Reply

    August 3, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    I am addicted to fruitcake. Enjoy every week!!

  2. Support your local firefighter Reply

    July 15, 2012 at 11:12 pm

    The problem is not a lack of firemen.
    If I recall correctly, Randy Economy began what is now his blog exposing all the BS going on at the district. He was running for the school board at the time. One story I still recall was one of a certain elected official having alcohol on their receipt for reimbursement. Randy exposed other mismanagement as well. Currently, there is an Indian gentleman who speaks out at council meetings exposing city mismanagement. I believe his name is Ram Kkar. These are some of our firemen.

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