Introducing J.J. Velarde to Upbeat Times

be a contributor. I intend on reporting local stories about joy and resilience during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Being Up- beat is probably one of the best immune system boosters around!

Sebastopol, CA. ~ I am a single mother to a rambunctious little girl, working odd jobs, and a writer at heart. I was recently laid off


my new data entry job in Waste Management due to that virus that shall not be named. One day I left my keys in the car while doing errands, and I picked up a re- cent edition of Upbeat Times. Therein was the announcement that Up- beat needed a delivery driver to help Paul out with the route.

During these times

of dire uncertainty and massive suffering each one of us has the abil- ity to evolve and share with others the light that comes from within. Everyday we are bom- barded with terrible news from around the world featuring images and ideas that fire warn- ing signals in our brain releasing cortisol, or the stress hormone, which weakens our immune systems. Upbeat con- sciously streams away from the psychic pollu- tion and sensationalism of mainstream and so- cial media. I decided to call Paul not only to help deliver the Times, but to

First Contribution

The Howlers on Gravenstein

On April Fools, 2020, my daughter and I moved into the Gravenstein Highway area in Sebas- topol, Ca. One evening, I was cooking a rice-and- bean dinner when we heard our roommates out on the back porch. In the purple agate of dusk they holwed! I turned off the stove, grabbed my daughter, and hopped to the patio exclaiming, “what is this?” “Yeah! We’ve been howling now for some time since this quarantine thing started.”

The mysticism of the phenomenon got me digging. What does it mean? When did it start, and by whom? The tone seemed legendary. It evokes a primal

canine behavior. The Grey Wolf, ancestor to all modern dogs, howls in call and response to share location or to warn. Like a traditional nu- clear family, they live in packs comprised of 4-6 wolves. As North Amer- ican natives, they are perfect totems for con- necting folks throughout


Thank you! We Couldn’t Have Done it Without You!

707-494-1767 Love is anterior to life, posterior to death, initial of creation, and the exponent of breath. ~ Emily Dickinson UPBEAT TIMES, INC. • MAY 2020 • Pg 21

J.J. Velarde ~ the country.

It seems

that the howling may be symbolic of connection and perseverance dur- ing the COVID-19 pan- demic. The howlers come out

at 8 p.m. on the North American coast s with some states in between like Georgia and Wy- omi ng. Some trace it to the

#Solidartityat8 social media trend and tie it to the spread of other COVID-19 rituals around

UPBEAT TIMES, INC. • MAY 2020 • Pg 21 Fun Facts & Trivia #4

the world. Globally, most aim to express gratitude for healthcare workers. Nationally, however, it appears that howling iso- lation brought on by shel- ter-in-place unearths a communal need for com - muni - cation and pride. While social dis - tancing contin- ues, the howl - ers’

song brings neighbors the opportunity to hear others, and be heard.

IT’S ALL IN THE HOWL Perhaps the most well known characteristic of the grey wolf is its penetrating, hauntingly beautiful howl. This is a primary commu- nication tool, both between lone wolves and their pack, as well as between packs. When it comes to territory, inter-pack howling will determine the size and strength of different pack, often determining weather or not to attack or retreat. ~

Wolves develop close relationships and strong social bonds. They often demonstrate deep affection for their family and may even sacrifice themselves to protect the family unit.

We Hope we Bring a Bit of Sunshine to Your Life!

Celebrating 22 Years!

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