April 17th Meeting Featuring Dave Kragen of KaveDragenInk LLC

17 April 2009, 7:30-8:00: 22 people show up for networking, coffee and waffles. Meeting begins precisely at 8:00 AM with Carolyn Olberg at the Gong

Tim Longley, BBC Chair  – MCs and introduces Dave Kragen – “A challenge: after Dave tells his story, does someone want to practice their 90 second elevator speech?”

Kevin Dwyer, Executive Director, Chamber of Commerce  – “Quick announcement!” Gives upcoming events at the Chamber Of Commerce. Reminds everyone that Carolyn O is maintaining our business card file and contact list. Yesterday’s workshop at the library went great. Next: investing in turbulent times, next Thursday, 5:30-7:00, Real Foods.

Tim Longley – “Person-to-person relationships, that’s what we’re about. Now, here’s Dave .”

8:05-8:20: Dave Kragen’s Speech:

“I like this group. We have great folks here. Like Carolyn Olberg, artist at designing personal financial portfolios: “What we’re doing here is to introduce one another as individuals-beyond the elevator speech.” And Shelly Blain Reimer: “Stop making excuses, take responsibility for your own success, help as many others as you can and you will reach your goals. It is not about you, it is about being grateful and giving, helping others to see the angel inside of them and helping them make positive changes in their own lives.” Christine Grams: “Connect with friends. If you can have quality there, you can better have it out in the workplace or marketplace.” Barbara Reininger who tells how she started “My Kids’ Cookies”: “I used to bake cookies to get my kids to do their homework; now I’m baking cookies to pay for their college.” Dave Beck, who practices the art of hospitality: “Think collaboratively; this is the key.” Tim Longley, “I love rock and roll!” And our COC master at arms, Kevin Dwyer: “I’m from Syracuse, New York. My neighbor keeled over dead while shoveling snow.” All real stuff, positive stuff, encouraging each other in hard times.

“I know. I’m supposed to talk about myself, tell my story. Ok. I’m not from Minnesota. I am a third generation San Franciscan (only country in the US that had its own Emperor). Great grandfather Samuel settled there in 1863, having fled pogroms in Krakow at the age of nine to be a ‘journeyman’; landed in New York, 1857, but didn’t want to settle in another Jewish ghetto. I am a bomb baby. Duck-and-cover years were the first I recall. 1956, the Cold War covered the world in its icy fingers while a kid in kindergarten waited for the end of the world, incineration in the atomic fires of nuclear holocaust.

“No, really, this is going to be cheery, give me a minute. Maybe that’s partly why, entering fourth grade, I still couldn’t read. PTSD. 1971, draft number came up (#82). U.S.C.G. had an opening-pretty much out of Nam by ’72-so I did four years of search-and-rescue and aids-to-navigation as a deck sailor in Alaska and Northern Spain, Galicia. Graduated from Syracuse with degrees in philosophy, linguistics, philosophy of art. Finished my first short story, “The Chairs” in 1984. First novel, “Creatures Of The Heart” in 1991. First published novel, KillWare (http://www.killware.com) in 2004, Plagueman in 2005 (http://www.plagueman.com) [Dave holds up book…Tim makes joke about the ending].

“I started KaveDragenInk LLC (http://www.kavedragenink.com ) last July to freelance my copy-editing skills. My wife of 33 years, Jan’s a school teacher, national lecturer in history, language arts, the gifted-and-talented child at risk, and a writer. She has been my sponsor since the beginning or our life together. My daughter, Colleen, and her family presently live in Bellingham (grandson Dante is 7½).

“Take-away thought:

Do art!

Nurture your aestheticness. We’re all artists of one sort or another: baking, painting, making music, telling stories, creating eloquent financial strategies, writing poetry, caring for the elderly, performance art such as public speaking, teaching. In some ways it’s easier being an artist who is also a theist. I can see the story something like this: The first thing The God does is create a universe. Then The God creates us to be creators ourselves (The God creates out of nothing, we create out of the stuff The God creates). The first thing The God asks us to do, care for the Garden. Gardening! What my wife calls four-dimensional art-three spatial dimensions which change over the fourth dimension of time through the seasons. So the first profession wasn’t prostitution, it was gardening.”

Be artful! We homo-sapiens are all, by nature, artists and creators.”

8:20-8:30: 90 Seconds speeches – John Brubeck: “I’m not from Minnesota. I work for Fairbanks Construction. They’re best known for custom houses and commercial projects such as Island Church and St. Cecilia’s. However, we also do remodeling jobs; jobs of any size, bathroom repairs, kitchen remodels. Thanks, Kevin, for inviting me here. I am a COC board member now.” (http://www.fairbankconstruction.com)

Gordon Hewes: Juice Plus Healthy Drink is better than diet drinks. There’s a kids-for-free program, and a program for young athletes. “If you don’t take care of your body, where else are you going to go?” (http://www.healthprojuiceplus.com)

Tamara Sellman: “I used to live in Minnesota. My background is in journalism. I am director of ‘Writer’s Rainbow Literary Services, LLC’. I also work for Field’s End writer’s community here on the island (http://www.fieldsend.org/). Thank you.”  (http://www.writersrainbow.wordpress.com)

Tim Longley – “That brings our meeting to a close…Carolyn…Caro-”