Subscribe for 33¢ / day

I have a playlist on my tablet that contains my favorite pieces of music — rock, folk, blues, Irish, Gospel, and country.

I call it “Music that moves me.”

We all want to be moved, intellectually, emotionally or spiritually. The ability to feel something — happiness, sadness, relief, dread, elation, disappointment — allows us to live, not merely exist.

Sports can give us that. So can film, music and great works of art. And family, friends, and faith.

The feelings don’t need to be intense. Happiness can be demonstrated by a kick-your-heels dance or a simple smile. Sadness can be shown by sobbing or just a lowering of the head. Patriotism can be as visible as a flag salute or a nod to a veteran.

Last week, I was moved by three events that left me with a warm feeling of gratitude.

First, I was grateful for my city’s ongoing support for the arts after the Selma Arts Foundation donated $3,000 to young Selma filmmaker Michael Morales to cover his expenses when he travels to show his film at the Cannes Film Festival in France.

The Foundation’s generosity was spurred by arts impresario Vicki Filgas. She also has scheduled a March 3 preview screening of Morales' film, “Guardia de mi Hermano” which was chosen to be presented at Cannes in May.

The March event at the Selma Arts Center will be sponsored by the Arts Foundation. It will include a rescreening of Fresno artist Ernesto Palomino's iconic 1963 film, “My Trip in a '52 Ford,” and a trailer of Jesus Gonzalez' film, “Offside! Fuera de Lugar Al Norte de la Linea.”

The second thing that moved me was gratitude for the support of Selma High sports. Two nights in a row, the high school parking lot was full.

First, for the Bears’ boys basketball game against Dinuba, and Mike Pallesi’s team rewarded its fans with a scintillating performance in beating The Emperors by more than 40 points. The Bears, Central Section champions in Division III last season, were moved up to D-II this year. But after last week’s win over Dinuba, it’s easy to believe they will be strong contenders for another Valley title.

The next night, I was glad I walked to the doubleheader wrestling match because there were no parking spots in the lot. The defending state champion Selma girls defeated Golden Valley from Bakersfield, then state power Bears boys beat Kingsburg.

In the past several year's winter sports have been a pillar of strength for Selma High. As a former sports writer and high school coach, I love to see fans flock to see Bears athletes in action.

Thirdly, I was filled with somber gratitude for the men and women who have fought for our country. When former Selma Fire Chief, David Haugen, was buried in an afternoon ceremony on a sunny, blustery day, it meant another World War II veteran was gone from us. My father Jim Robison, also a World War II vet, passed last year.

Dave Haugen was able to participate in the Central Valley Honor Flight a few years ago. I had the privilege of attending the Honor Flight with my dad in 2014, so I understand what a thrill it was for the veterans.

There will come a time in the near future when no one will be left who fought in the Great War.

World War II veterans are dying by the thousands every day, and the Honor Flights now are filled with Korean War vets. They have been called the Greatest Generation, and I don’t think anyone could argue the importance of what these World War II veterans did for America.

An attitude of gratitude, times three. Thanks, Selma. I needed that emotional boost.

Ken Robison, a longtime resident of Selma, is a retired newspaper reporter, editor, photographer and columnist. Selma Stories runs most Wednesdays in The Enterprise Recorder. He can be reached at

Load comments