By Janet Clark
Who? Oh, that guy. Yes, I know him. No, no, he’s not Chinese, he’s from Vietnam. I don’t know when he immigrated, but you can see he’s not very old. Late thirties, maybe? You’re right. He’s not a big man, but what a hard worker. He’s been delivering newspapers in Poet’s Corner for about five years. Since he took over the route there’s never been a single day the papers weren’t delivered. Maybe a little late once or twice. If I’m awake I hear a comforting “thwack” as the paper hits the driveway around 4.30 a.m.
By the way – that guy happens to be one of the kindest people I know. For years I subscribed to the San Francisco Chronicle Thursdays through Sundays. Then, one day the Chron raised prices to the point I could no longer afford delivery. I sent a note to that guy letting him know my reason for quitting the paper and thanking him for his reliable service. The morning I was to receive no Chronicle there was a newspaper on my driveway. Attached to it was a crudely penciled note.
“Good morning, thank you for the Christmas card you sent me. I always have extra Contra Costa Times papers. I’ll throw one every day and if you need me to stop, call this number. Dien Lam.”
For a year and a half he has faithfully left a Times on my driveway. From time to time I put a ten dollar bill in an envelope and mailed it to him.
Recently the San Francisco Chronicle ran a special “We miss you. Ninety dollars for the entire year!”
I signed up.
Now I get two papers every morning – carefully rubber-banded together so I only have to stoop over once. You know that’s getting harder to do early in the morning these days? Stooping.
Oh yeah, that guy is just the greatest!
By Treva Perkins
Oh that guy! There was no way that I was going to give him the satisfaction of even looking at him! And those girls hanging all over him as they all walked the hallways ooogaling and cooing. There were at least four or five of them at all times sauntering down the hall with him arm in arm. It was disgusting. Didn’t they know how ridiculous they looked? And the guy had a big smile that said it all; he loved it! I couldn’t stand it. All of this frenzy took place toward the end my ninth grade year at George Jacobs Junior High, in Eureka, CA. This tall, slender Elvis look alike with his dark hair and creamy white skin had shown up at our school and was making quite a stir with the girls. He and I didn’t have any classes together so the only time I saw him was passing in the hallways always accompanied by a bevy of silly girls. No, I was not going to be part of the harem.
Probably the reason that I caught his attention was because I ignored him, thoroughly. Certainly I didn’t mean to bring this interest to myself because not only was I terribly shy, but I didn’t want to be pulled in to being part of the troupe. It wasn’t too many days before one of the girls approached me and said that Doug wanted to call me. After all of these years, details are few and far between but I did talk to Doug for at least an hour on the phone after dinner for several nights. He didn’t live anywhere near me so popping over for a visit was not to be. Doug asked me to the prom. Considering all of the girls who had been dying to date him, I couldn’t believe that he picked me. On the evening of the prom his aunt, who he was living with at the time, drove us to the school for the gala event. This was my first real date and on the way home in the back seat with his aunt driving up front, I had my first real kiss.
With the end of the school year, Doug seemed to disappear as fast as he had swooped into town. I can only imagine that my parents might have sighed a breath of relief when this whirlwind liaison ended.
By Nahide Craig
Over the last 12 years reading and hearing about his policies I knew in my heart he was no good for the country. He was a master mind of manipulating the poor and the uneducated into religious promises and gifts just to get their votes while he and his family benefitting millions of dollars from bribery and nepotism. Last summer I saw myself the changes he brought to the country and I was appalled. Was all the new construction, roads, bridges, tunnels and roads considered progress? Was bringing extreme conservatism through pushing religiousness and extreme measures to a country with constitution requires secularism considered a progress? Was there a secret motive behind all of these for his own political future?
Hearing his speeches I can see that he can be convincing, sympathetic and even emotionally close to people. This was his only gift. Even his lies sounded true and sincere as if they are coming from his heart and for the benefit of the country. Of course the biggest beneficiary was himself and his closest family so far.
Then he became more autocratic and wanting to change the constitution to his liking and jailing the journalist, closing TV stations and newspapers. When he became paranoid and started to fire the judges, and sending high ranking military commanders to jail. And finally some financial scandals related to his cabinet members and then to his son became public. Thanks to the foreign press to make these issues open in public through the news and the media, because news in local media came to paralyzing halt with most prominent authors being in the jail.
When reading this one can guess at least half a dozen government heads. I guess I will not reveal it for amusement and for guessing game.