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    VALERIE SCHULTZ: Supporting each other in our suffering

    By VALERIE SCHULTZ, For The Californian
    Friday, Oct 24 2014 11:14 AM

    As the blues musician David Bromberg sings, "You've got to suffer if you wanna sing the blues." But really, you've got to suffer if you are a human being. Even the most seemingly charmed life endures its times of suffering, be they great or trifling, spiritual or physical, brief or extended, temporary or final.

    Let's face it: We avoid suffering. Who wants to suffer? We'd rather not. We want life to be pretty and rosy. We shy away from pain or disappointment or disillusionment. We seek escape in alcohol or drugs, material gain or food. We chase the elusive concept of personal happiness, which we are certain is just over the next rise.

    We also avoid other people who are suffering. We keep them at a distance, as though they are...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    FOODIE: Another privately owned restaurant has opened downtown, this one a cozy bistro that features soft leather couches, a comfortable, homey interior, a wide selection of drinks, and light salads and sandwiches. It's called CraSh Lounge...

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    CAMILLE GAVIN: Turning 50? Let's put on a show!

    Some folks are reluctant to admit they've reached the half-century mark; Bruce Saathoff is the smiling exception. "I'm turning 50 on the 28th of October and people kept asking me, 'What do you want to do for your 50th?'" said the Stars...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    POLITICS: Is anyone else sick of the political attack ads that have flooded the airways? You'd think there would be weightier issues than how many times Pedro Rios voted while serving on the Delano City Council or if Andy Vidak had...

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    HERB BENHAM: Urban adventure a heavy burden for uninitiated

    Recently I bought a pair of walking shoes and borrowed a backpack from a friend. We had a trip planned and rather than break both in on foreign soil, it made sense to test-drive them in order to diminish the chance of foot and back...

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    VALERIE SCHULTZ: Society's rules can stop us from being true selves

    Oh, the joy of a bookworm working in a library: I am surrounded every day by more books than I could read in my lifetime. I also stumble upon books that I wouldn't otherwise choose for myself, like a book I've been reading called "Real...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    CANCER:October is breast cancer awareness month, and a brief look at the statistics are humbling. For example, about 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12 percent) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. In 2014, an...

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    VALERIE SCHULTZ: Coming Out Day may make road a little smoother

    Today is National Coming Out Day, the day each year that your son, daughter, father, mother, brother, sister, cousin, friend, neighbor or co-worker may feel enough confidence in your understanding and acceptance to say to you: I am...

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    HERB BENHAM: Last meal? Just be sure to eat dessert first

    On a recent bike ride, we talked about what our last meal might be. The conversation began with my friend Bob asking whether I thought it was bad form to eat two doughnuts at Houchin Blood Bank after giving blood. I didn't think so, but...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    VIA ARTE: Make sure you remember that Via Arte is set for this weekend over at The Marketplace in the Southwest. This is always an amazing experience as chalk artists line up to show off their talents in the parking lot. The event is free,...

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    HERB BENHAM: Steve Garvey a hit with Bakersfield

    Steve Garvey speaks like he used to hit -- expertly. I heard the former Dodger first baseman at the Second Annual Heart Never Forgets benefit for the Alzheimer's Disease Association of Kern County at Wes and Tracey Bradford's home. I...

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    CAMILLE GAVIN: Young actors find the Spotlight

    Professional photographer Melissa Brazeal has embarked on a new venture called the Acting Out Theatre Company, which is geared toward instruction for young people and performances of traditional as well as more hard-hitting plays. Her...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED A blog about life, media, politics & people

    DEATH: The law firm representing the family of Nancy Joyce Garrett, the 72-year-old woman killed in an early morning crash with a Kern County sheriff's deputy, is waiting for a Highway Patrol investigation before deciding whether to file...

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