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January 16, 2021

Worthy to Print Column: Count Your Blessings

By George Worthy, Gonzales Columnist

How are you doing? Still staying in the house? It’s getting a little old, don’t you think? I guess we just have to remember something that was told to me when I was elected to the council. We were in Sacramento for some classes on what we were expected to do now that we had been elected. I’ll never forget what this instructor said, “Government is very slow to get things done, because everyone has to see what you are planning and have input as to whether it will work or not.” I think that was a teaching point for me. Now I knew why nothing seemed to be getting done.

I’m not a scientific guy, I don’t even play one on TV. But it seems to me this new vaccine better work or there will be some pretty upset citizens. This is a really slow way to get things done, but at least we have a vaccine. I watched a documentary the other day where they were talking about how Jonas Salk came up with the vaccine that has just about erased polio all over the world. Of course, he had more time. It was a terrible disease that infected thousands of children, and luckily by the time the vaccine was ready, he had almost everyone ready to try it.

He started in 1930 and didn’t do his trials until 1954. Even then it was problematic. He allowed the vaccine to be used on 200,000 children. They allowed children to be the first because it was such a terrible affliction. In spite of the rigorous research, they weren’t positive it would work, and of those in the trial, thousands contracted polio and 200 died.

Things moved a little slower back then, but eventually he was cleared. It was a defective vaccine made by a laboratory in Berkley. Eventually he invented an oral dose so all the kids that were afraid of needles got to take it by mouth. I think it was in a sugar cube. I really don’t remember, but I still have the little scar on my shoulder that the initial vaccination made.

Are you ready to take this vaccine? I have heard of terrible reactions, but I’m sure the government is working on the problem. The biggest problem I have had with this Covid-19 is that we have to stay away from each other so we don’t have any more infections. I won’t even get into asking where the governor came up with the power to restrict us to our own homes. To me, that is scarier than the infection.

This is the season to come together and offer our presents to other members of our family, except you can’t have family come together. There is about 10 members of my family that live close enough to get together for any reason, but Christmas, even more than Thanksgiving, is my favorite time. You get presents!

This was a very poignant Christmas because Eric, my son in law, would have been able to make it if I had been able to invite him. He is almost never home on a holiday. He travels all over the United States in his business of pest control and is on the road a lot. It isn’t often that he is free to come to a gathering.

I remember when my daughter met him in Arizona. She told us he was a winner! She kept telling us how cool he was, but we held our own council on that. Of course, this includes her two brothers. This guy is the kind of man that you want your daughter to bring home to meet the parents. He is a rock. His dad was a soldier who fought in South Korea.

There is a photo of his dad on their wall where his dad was clowning around wearing two pistols and looking as if he was going to draw one. They look so much alike, I thought the photo was of Eric. His pop is very proud of his military service and Eric is very proud of his dad. He favors hiring of veterans in his company and he just promoted one of his managers.

Anyone who favors vets is pretty high up in my esteem. I wish you could meet him. If you know my daughter, you know that she needs a little extra attention. I have told you about my daughter and my sons and their adventures of becoming grown. I just thought, just because this guy is such a fine example, that you should hear of him. I have had long conversations with him and I know he is taking care of his family.

He will be here the next time we have a chance to gather together and thank God for all the blessings He has showered upon my family. Eric is one of those blessings. I love him as I love my own children. He completes the family gathering, so I hope we have one soon.

Let’s pray that it is soon. I hate this mask and having to converse with all my favorite friends by computer. I know it has to be done and I am happy to see the citizens of Gonzales living by that rule. We may not like it, but we understand because we are Gonzales. We lead this valley in so many ways, let’s be the first to not have any more infections.

God Bless.

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