Professor John Roth

Attending a presentation by Professor John Roth was like taking a mini-course in Philosophy.  I envy those students who get a whole semester/quarter with him.   It was a thoughtful and inspirational evening.   I didn’t take notes, but here is what I recollect.  As you can see, he definitely found his leverage.

Questions are valuable, they open doorways for thought:
Sometimes questions offer more than answers. Their value lies in possibilities.
Here are some age old questions to ponder and to ask young people in your life:

What is important?

  1. What is better?
  2. What is right?
  3. What is truth?

Current American Society
From a historical perspective, how will we be remembered?

  1. Admiration
  2. Judgment
  3. As a time where a great deal of attention was paid to Human Rights

On Personal Responsibility and Civic Duty
What are you doing?
Are you doing enough?
– and / or –
What did we do?
Could we have done more?
Could it have been better?

On today’s atrocities, like Darfur
We must find where we have leverage.  In Johns case, he has the classroom.  A captive audience to encourage thoughts, responsibility and actions.  Where is your leverage?  Do your part.Perspective
Life will always be with troubles.  We are living in good times. There are people in the world who would like to take away our values.
Never take anything good for granted.

Where is there hope?
Look for the golden strands in history
Look for the power and influence of those who have passed away (Dominion of the Dead)
Look for inspiration in people

  •    Help others
  •    Others help you
  •    It’s human nature
  •    It’s reciprocal

Books Mentioned/Recommended
Methow River Poems by William Stafford  (the Methow river is in Washington State!)
The Dominion of the Dead by Robert Pogue Harrison
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson

Dining in Huntington Beach

Outdoor Alternatives

If you have a couple hours on your hands, treat yourself to lunch in the Barefoot Bar at Duke’s on the Pier.  Settle into a nice table on the outside patio and start by ordering a glass of chilled tropical Matua Chardonnay.  Drink in hand, request the delicious mixed green Crispy Wonton Salad from the Dining Room Menu and give an emphatic “yes” to Blue Cheese crumbles. Compliment the salad with fried Crab Macnut Wontons plated atop of mustard plum sauce and the ever so satisfying Hawaiian style Poke Rolls. This last dish, consisting of seared Ahi Tuna wrapped in rice paper and sautéed in Maui onions, is absolute h-e-a-v-e-n. Allow the cool ocean breeze and relaxing music factor into this excellent, quintessential Huntington Beach dining experience.  Duke’s, 317 Pacific Coast Hwy, Huntington Beach, CA 92648, 714.374.6446

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Many downtown restaurants offer patio seating, but if your looking for ambiance, look no further than Spark Woodfire Grill.  Located on the 2nd floor near the movie theaters, this stylish restaurant attracts a sophisticated dinner crowd.  Request outdoor seating, if there’s a wait, order a refreshing cocktail from the small, but sleek bar near the entrance.  If it is not too crowded, sneak out to the fire pit on the terrace and take in the ocean view.  The plates here are rich and satisfying and compliment the atmosphere.  Begin you dining experience with the excellent Chopped Green salad, and then further satisfy your taste buds with the classic herb-crusted halibut served with roasted garlic butter sauce, hazelnut green beans and rice pilaf.   Complete your romantic evening with coffee and Chocolate XXX Cake. Spark Woodfire Grill 300 Pacific Coast Hwy, Suite 202, Huntington Beach 92648, 714.960.0996

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A Family Affair

Traveling with hungry children, but tired of hamburgers and fries?  Try Wahoo’s Fish Taco on Main Street. You can easily recognize this establishment as the windows are covered with surf and pop culture stickers. Don’t let its name intimidate the kids, there are plenty of non-seafood options, but for those willing to take an ocean plunge, try the tasty blackened Fish Tacos.  Here you can spread out, be loud and enjoy a healthy and affordable meal. Wahoo’s is also convenient if you are dining alone and don’t have a lot of time.  Wahoo’s Fish Taco, 120 Main Street, Huntington Beach, 92648, 714.536.2050

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Local hotspot Chronic Tacos, located in downtown Huntington Beach, is just six short blocks from Main Street.   You can drive, bike or walk – just head north on Main Street (away from the beach) and turn left on Orange.  Take a gander and the interesting houses while you travel west, to 11th street.  It is here, on the corner of Orange and 11th, that you will discover Chronic Tacos and their mouthwatering Mexican food. Most likely there will be a line out the door as Chronic is addicting to the natives.  Fortunately, they have a large menu posted on the wall and a fairly fast assembly line.  Customizing your order is expected, be prepared to answer a series of questions based on your taste preferences. Try the Carne Asada Fatty Tacos, with onions and cilantro, and then wash it down with a cold beer.  The atmosphere is extremely casual, but this taco stand has a good family vibe. Chronic Taco, 328 11th Street, Huntington Beach, 714.960.0339

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