Author: Judd, Brooks

Ten Items or less

1. The Spring camp out began casually with folks filtering in on Monday and by Wednesday things began to really start cooking. By Friday, the camp grounds were full and alive with the sounds of bluegrass music resonating throughout the campgrounds. It appears that Turlock has been a good choice for the spring camp out. Congratulations to all the volunteers who worked so hard putting this together.

2. Chef Mike: Chef Mike e-mailed to meet him at the fairgrounds because he had something to give me. CBA members know that every year Chef Mike prepares a tasty Sicilian spaghetti dinner for the hungry CBA campers at the spring camp out endearing Chef Mike to the hungry hordes that feast on his succulent spaghetti. This act alone makes him a CBA hero. Chef Mike plays a mean gut bucket bass providing many jams with a dead on beat that keeps the music flowing. I also know that Chef Mike makes the best chicken tacos I have ever eaten. Now what could Chef Mike have for me, a fellow Giants fan?

Chef Mike had acquired a beautiful black and white photo (in a beautiful frame) capturing a rather ugly incident in SF Giants-LA Dodger history. The graphic picture was of the Juan Marichal-John Roseboro incident during a game in 1965. Juan Marichal was forever labeled a “thug” and it almost cost him a well earned and well deserved entry into the Hall of Fame. The fact that the two became close friends after the incident and Juan was even invited to speak at John’s funeral (by his wife) many years’ later attests to the strength of friendship, sportsmanship, and forgiveness. This is a gift I will cherish. Thank you Chef Mike.

3. Edward M. Alston: A couple of weeks ago my good friend and financial advisor for the CBA Edward M. Alston was in Turlock for a week- end of non- musical activity. Ed had been “scouted” by some soft ball “head-hunters” and had been asked to play for a team in the “geezer” slow pitch league. Ed agreed.

Saturday morning at the crack of dawn, six teams began playing on the three carefully manicured, soft ball diamonds at Pedretti Park. Ed’s team consisted of men 65 years or older and their first game pitted them against a team of men who were 70 or older. You may have images of men in walkers and canes running around the bases, unable to bend down to pick up a ground ball let alone throw out a runner at first base. Not so. These guys were in shape and they were running, (fast) fielding grounders, (cleanly) catching fly balls and even sliding into a base if needed. Cheers and kudos to Mr. Alston and his fellow players. I hope when I get to be “that age “many, many years from now, I can be half as agile and full of energy as these men. It was a treat to watch them and I want to thank Ed for inviting me. (Ed’s team won all five games and Ed batted a bit over .400.)
Footnote: Ed was a dashing figure staking out third base like a determined General Patton at the Battle of the Bulge. I did have a difficult time recognizing him. Ed had grown to perfection and waxed beautifully a full 1890’s dyed black handle-bar mustache that complimented a set of striking bushy salt and pepper mutton chop side burns. Had Ed not been wearing his Blue Meanie soft ball jersey that had the words, “Lasorda for President” written in blue and white I would not have known it was our CBA Financial advisor.
4. My grandson: My grandson was talking to my daughter Jessica and she told him they were going to the park on Tuesday. He looked at her quizzically and asked, “What are we going to do on One Day?”

5. Judd family tree: My sister, Maria, and niece Megan Lynch are on a discovery trip in Texas, Tennessee, and Kentucky tracing the lineage of the Judd family roots. Maria has been sending me pictures of birth and marriage certificates that go back 5 generations. It looks like we have another Alex Haley in the works. Good work Maria.
6. Father’s Day Festival 2011: Looks like this will be another outstanding year. It is a shame that gas prices will probably be inching toward the $5.00 a gallon level. Every dark cloud has a silver lining. The stock market is inching up to 13000 so someone somewhere must be clapping their hands.

7. The Comics: I used to laugh at my mother because she always read the comics in the newspaper. She explained to me that a lot of the comics were geared for serious minded adults and they weren’t all for children. In fact she said it was a sign of intelligence to read the comics. Who was I to argue with my mother? I began reading the comics in the Oakland Tribune, SF Chronicle and the Hayward Daily Review. My favorites were Peanuts, B.C., The Wizard of Id, and Doonesbury. Now when I told my friends that I read the comics and they would scoff at me I knew better.

As I got older the comics lost their appeal and I focused more on the sad state affairs of the country, economy, wars, etc. A few weeks ago I began reading Peanuts again, then B.C., Bizarro, and became a big fan of Tundra. Things in the paper still disturb me, but at least I get a bit of wisdom or a deep chuckle from my friends in the comics.

8. Sheila Judd: (If I may brag): In June, Sheila, my wife of 40 years will receive her tenure at school as a special education teacher. About thirteen years ago Sheila went back to school part time. For ten years Sheila fulfilled her duties as a special education aide during the day and attended college courses in the late afternoons, evenings, many week-ends, and summer school. She received her AA Degree at Modesto JC, graduated with honors with a B.A. Degree at Cal State Stanislaus, a year later received her teaching credential and two years later earned her Special Education Teaching Credential. She did all of this while working, taking care of me during many illnesses and being a nurse to her mother and father.

9. Down the road I will write a column and share some of the obstacles Sheila had to overcome during these past 13 years while going to school. To say I am lucky and fortunate would be an understatement. Good work Sheila, congratulations, what a job. I love you!
Until next time, read a book, hug a child, pet a dog, stroke a cat, smile, and dance like no one is watching.
Posted:  5/6/2011

Copyright © 2002 California Bluegrass Association. All rights reserved.
Comments? Questions? Please email