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Odds and Ends from this week's SN&R

Cover of the 9/30/10 SN&R
Three items in the current Sacramento News & Review got my attention.

One is a Letter to the Editor from Thomas E. Nicolette of Sacramento, writing about homelessness, that says something that is painfully true, but not so certainly and absolutely true as comes off in the way he expresses it.

Nicolette writes,
I live out here in Arden Arcade, and I give to the homeless out here near Howe and El Camino [avenues]. These guys, in their 40s and 50s, will never work again. There is not enough work for even able-bodied 20-year-old kids anymore in the casual labor market.

Let’s be honest here. Nobody wants to hire these guys, period. They are worse off than the Hindu “untouchable” caste. Therefore, since they have been tossed unto the trash heap of humanity, let us not pretend and continue to hold the long-since proven invalid supposition that they could go out and get a job if they wanted to.
Take out the harshness in what Nicolette writes, the universal certainty and the tang of invective, and you have to acknowledge the man is on to something.

By all accounts, we are in for a decade of high unemployment. We homeless guys who are nearer to our deaths than to our births are suffering the worst of the recession now, and we are going to continue to have a doozie of a hard time finding any job, much less good ones.

Because the job market is changing ever faster and ever more radically, younger employees, trained for the culture and equipment of the current employment scene will be increasingly valued, while we will be looked at as has-beens, past our expiration date.
The second item of interest is news that the Jade Buddha for Universal Peace will be visiting Sacramento for two weeks beginning on October 3.

So, if y'all have nothing to do for the nine straight days when Fiendship Park is going to be closed, come refresh your spirit in the presense of the 11-foot-tall Jade Buddha, skillfully carved from a single piece of gem-quality jade.

The Buddha will be on display at the Kim Quang Temple at 3119 Alta Arden Expressway. [map] [link to Jade Buddha tour website] [A press release from the Vietnamese Buddhist Community in Northern California relating to the Sacramento arrival of the Buddha statue.]


And lastly but not leastly, the final article in the weekly is an interview with Fiber Girl, Bronwyn Schweigerdt, a Sacramento teacher, author and speaker who preaches the good news of healthful eating.

Her 2002 book The Undiet was a big seller, teaching people how to eat well and make their body physically healthier as a result.  Free to Eat: The Proven Recipe for Permanent Weight Loss is her new book, which, as the title indicates, focuses on weight loss.

Boy, would I like for Ms. Schweigerdt to visit Homeless World Sacramento and do some super-heroine stuff for us, many of whom have been fattened and undernourished by the unhealthful diet of the homeless, which is fully Dickensian.

Oliver, tremblingly comes forward, tray in hand, and makes his famous request: "Please, Sister, I want a veggie."
Here, one Q&A from the interview:

Q. Why did you go to school for nutrition?
A.  Well, I believe I started studying nutrition because I wanted to save the world. I saw so many people getting diseases like heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes at such young ages, and knowing that it’s absolutely preventable—and absolutely reversible, even—it just really motivated me to study nutrition and to help people.
Hooray, you, Bronwyn!


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