Front Street Weekly; 318
The following program is a rebroadcast of Front Street Weekly which aired earlier this year. Oregon Public Broadcasting presents Front Street weekly, a television magazine featuring news and arts coverage from an Oregon perspective. With Gwyneth Gamble and Jim Swinson. [theme] Good evening. I'm Gwyneth Gamble. Welcome to Front Street Weekly.
I'm Jim Swenson, and here's a preview of some of tonight's stories. For many years, Tourette's syndromeİ an organic disorder of the central nervous system, has been unidentified and mis- diagnosed. Tonight we'll investigate what's being done to correctly diagnose and treat this little known disorder. And tonight we'll talk with Senator Bob Packwood about political issues essential to the northwest. If you want to keep condominiums off the Washington side across Multnomah falls, if you want to keep development outside of the incorporated cities at a minimum so that our children and grandchildren can enjoy that gorge. My bill is important. The Russian Old Believers, a unique religion and way of life. We'll travel to Woodburne and visit this community to discover the problems this endangered culture is facing. Meet Quarterflash. One of the hottest musical bands to come out of Oregon. [music] The private school will examine its growth in Oregon and find out why more parents are sending their
children into this alternative form of education. And finally scrimshaw, an old art form that is flourishing on the Oregon coast. Meet nationally recognized scrimshander Bonnie Schulte. She explains how this intricate art is made. An estimated three and a half million people in the United States have a rare disorder called Tourette's syndrome. As Field Producer Kaja Zaloudek found out, it's not the syndrome that's so rare, it's the diagnosis. Well. First it began with tics with the head and then I would do things with my hand and fly up in the air and I would bark like a dog and I'd do little skips and it'd go from one thing to another and then suddenly they all combined together. I'd just skip, make a noise, and shake my head. Two years ago, fifteen year old Clarie Schelm was told that she had a rare disorder called
Tourette's Syndrome. The symptoms of this puzzling disorder usually begin between the ages of 2 and 16. Initial symptoms include uncontrollable muscular jerking of the face or upper body. These movements are soon joined by verbal tics such as grunting, throat clearing, hissing, or barking sounds. The movements and sounds may come and go over a period of time and may be more or less severe but the symptoms don't go away completely. This is what distinguishes Tourette's from common childhood tics, those which children will outgrow. While Tourette's Syndrome is not life threatening, its effects can last a lifetime. Even though Tourette's Syndrome was originally identified in 1889 by a Frenchman named George Gilles de la Tourette the cause is still not known. The symptoms were then possibly the result of a psychological problem and were treated with psychotherapy and relaxation. But today Tourette's syndrome is recognized as a neurological ailment and is generally treated with medication. The
biggest problem with Tourette's is that it's often either overlooked completely or confused as hyper activity or some other common motion disorder. That's what happened in Clarice's case. She went nearly three years before being diagnosed. (Mother) "She never really had any problems until she began school. Then there was a disruptive problem and the teachers complained that she was so disruptive in the classroom and couldn't concentrate and stay on task and remain and they felt she was hyper." Male host "Doctors said Clarice was not hyperactive, But nobody seemed to know exactly what was wrong with her. Clarissa's parents weren't getting any answers at least not until they saw this public service announcement narrated by honorary national chairman Dick Cavett." Dick Cavett "Symptoms include involuntary movements like fast eye blinking or head or shoulder jerking and uncontrollable noises - grunting, barking, throat clearing." Male host "The symptoms that Cavett described were much like those Clarice was experiencing. When the Shelem's realized that Tourette's was a neurological problem. They took Clarice to see
Child Neurologist Dr. James Schimschock. (Mother) "At that time I took Clarice- shortly after I took her up to see a Child Neurologist, and I told him I thought that she might possibly be showing early symptoms of Tourette's. And he said "absolutely not." Dr. Schimschock sent the results of Clarice's exam to her pediatrician, stating that her symptoms did not strongly indicate the presence of Tourette's Syndrome. We spoke to the doctor about the problem of misdiagnosis. Because of confidentiality laws, he was unable to comment on specific cases, but did acknowledge that the diagnosis of Tourette's Syndrome is a challenge. (Dr. Schimschock) "Usually it's a matter of what the individual looks like on the day I see him, and what the history sounds like. There is no laboratory test that's black and white. It's not a Hard diagnosis to make Shimshack was only one of many doctors who
didn't recognize that Clarice had Tourette's. Months passed and she wasn't getting any better. In fact, the existing symptoms were getting worse, and new ones were now appearing. The physical tics had been joined by vocal outbursts: fits of barking and swearing. (Mother) "I really felt I had a child that was almost crazy in some ways, or possessed. Also I would say-I mean I don't believe in it- but at the same time her symptoms led me to believe that was a possibility." But Clarice wasn't crazy, and she wasn't possessed. Unknown to the ?Shellums? at the time, these vocalizations were another significant symptom of Tourette's. Nearly half of all Tourette's patients have these swearing spells, known as coprolalia. Shortly after Clarice's swearing began. She was easily diagnosed. The variety of symptoms shown by another Tourette's victim, 13-year-old Aaron Baker, led to a string of incorrect diagnoses as well.
(Woman) "The head was just twitching constantly. The body was moving. Vocalizations. Strange noises and squeals. Leg movements. Arm movements. And this was all diagnosed as behavioral. He was originally diagnosed as autistic. It was the first. in a long line of diagnoses." The diagnosis of Aaron as being autistic was then followed by one of being hyperkinetic and emotionally disturbed. In Aaron's case, the correct diagnosis of Tourette's Syndrome didn't come along for almost nine years. Although doctors have learned a little more about Tourette's since its discovery in 1885, they still don't know much about its origin. They do have some theories however about why the tics occur based on studies involving the reaction of the patients to symptoms of various drugs. If the drug reduces the tic, doctors find they understand more about the cause.
(Male Doctor) "We have some theories based on how we think medicines for Tourette's Syndrome, where these medicines primarily work by blocking certain types of receptors and specific areas of the brain. And because these medicines are known to function in this way, we work backwards and then conclude that Tourette's Syndrome must involve the disorder of this special neurochemical system in the brain." All of us have a chemical in the brain called dopamine, which is released in the form of an electrical signal. This chemical is transmitted from neuron to neuron, permitting normal speech and movement. In Tourette's patients, symptoms such as the uncontrollable tics are the result of a lack of inhibition. This is because dopamine is not regulated effectively by their system. Drugs which can block the signal of dopamine neurological receptors look promising. (Male Doctor) "The most effective medicines involve those drugs which can block
dopamine receptors in the brain, and the drug most studied for Tourette's Syndrome is called Haldol." Haldol is being used, and used effectively for almost 40 percent of the Tourette's patients. Haldol is not a cure for Tourette's Syndrome. However, it does suppress the symptoms. But there are some patients who can't use the medication because Haldol can cause unpleasant side effects. These include frightening muscle contractions, restlessness, and depression. Both Clarice and Aaron began their treatment using Haldol, but soon the side effects became worse than the original symptoms. Clarice's mother remembers a frightening experience with the Haldol. (Mother) "Clarice was only on four and a half milligrams when she had muscle spasms, and all her muscles locked up and her neck was locked backwards, and she looked like a cripple. And I took her down to emergency at the hospital. They of course had to give a kind of an antidote to...
to you know help her muscles all relax, and her become normal." Clarice and Aaron are now taking alternative drugs to control their symptoms. Clarice is taking Stelazine and Aaron's using Clonidine. Each is a major tranquilizer. In some cases, these optional drugs have side effects but ones that the patient can more easily tolerate. Although progress has been made toward the control of Tourette's Syndrome through the use of drugs, many patients begin treatment with more than a physical problem because of months and years spent in an undiagnosed condition. Many of these patients and their families have suffered emotional pain as well. (Male) The tics if they're severe enough,they certainly can interfere with the child's day to day activities and they also- The major problem in my experience has been that the tics are a cause of the child being subject to ridicule by his cool chums and playmates and what have you." (Aaron) "It would have been nice not to get made fun of so much, would've made a difference for other kids. There were other people and other people that had the same thing I would have,
they would have known earlier." It is clear to many doctors that help is needed to keep Tourette's patients mentally stable. One way to do this is to relieve some of the pressure often through counseling or psychotherapy. A controversial method which copes with stress is biofeedback. This is something that Clarice uses along with her medication, while getting feedback from her tics. She finds she's able to control her actions. (Male/Doctor) "It's okay for now just relax. Breathe gently and easily." (Clarice) "They hook you-you up to a monitor and they put these little things on your hand, and then sometimes they put them on your forehead. and It's like a little number, digit number in when I have an outburst or tic or something- you know any kind of a symptom of Tourette's, it goes up. And what I try to do is I I just sit back and I relax and try to hold that down andmake the numbers go lower and lower and lower."
(Male/doctor) "Concentrate on something that is very pleasant, an experience maybe [inaudible] this weekend that you really enjoy." While biofeedback is working for Clarice, most doctors still are hesitant to recommend it as treatment for all Tourette's patients. (Woman) Tourette's Syndrome it's a neurological disorder. And the reason that I'm presenting this to you, to the psychology classes, is that-". Tourette's syndrome is still a mystery to the medical profession, victims and their families. Early diagnosis, further research, and drugs may help a great deal, but a major obstacle still remains: the public attitude toward Tourette's patients. (Male/doctor) "If I was given a choice every year going out and educating the general public about Tourette's Syndrome or covering up the symptoms, I think it would be much easier to cover up symptoms." (Woman) "Why is that?" (Male doctor) "Cause I'm trying to change people's health patterns and health thinking is extremely difficult. I'm not terribly optimistic that that will happen." I think if the public understood Tourette's, then Clarice has no problem. Because if people look at her and say "Oh she has Tourette's," then she's free to do anything she wants. But
until that time comes, it's going to be real difficult." (Aaron's mother) "I'm hoping that he can develop a sense of himself, try and gain back some of the lost esteem, find that he's OK. That he's a neat kid. Hopefully that he will be independent and be able to support himself. You know I wish for my son the same thing any mother does." Remember Tourette's Syndrome is not a life-threatening disorder, so the debate continues over whether these victims actually need strong drugs to mask their symptoms. Often young people, people like Clarice and Aaron, are excluded from school and a normal life because of ignorance about their disorder. That sad fact is not likely to change until information about the disease spreads through society, including the medical profession. (Gwyneth) Recently Oregon Senator Bob Packwood was in Oregon while the Senate was in recess. We caught up
with him for a brief conversation. "Senator Packwood, Oregon is still suffering from the effects of the recession and we are very concerned about the President's budget, and what it means in terms of our economy. What can you do as a senator?" (Senator Packwood) "Well it isn't a question of what I can do just as a senator. This is gonna have to be worked out between the House the Senate and the President, and I tell you we're going to do it. It's gonna require some give on everybody's part. The President's gonna have to give on his defense budget." (Woman) "Will he?" (Senator Packwood) "Yes. Well let's put it this way. As part of a package, he will give. He'll have to give a bit on the defense budget. Congress is gonna have to give up some of its favorite programs that we like. We're going to have to adopt part of the so-called Grace Commission Report and, The Great Commission has some good recommendations in it. And there's gonna have to be some revenue increases. And it's a package that everyone will have to share in. We cannot have 200 billion 200 billion two hundred billion two hundred billion back-to-back-to-back-to-back for the next years, without the interest rates going back up
to 16- 18- 19- 20 percent, and I don't need to tell you what that does to Oregon." (Woman) "Well what about this dichotomy between Voelcker Faustin, the President and of course then you get Donald Reagan, who says [inaudible] must go." (Senator Packwood) "Well Donald Reagan basically at the moment as the secretary of the Treasury is parroting the President's position, which is no significant revenue increases. We're going to ride out this deficit. Now interestingly in his budget even the president has said that without some kind of revenue increases, that the deficits aren't going to go away. I think the President's going to change. I think he's gonna come around. He did in California, when he was Governor down there. But I emphasize again, it must be as part of a package in which Congress is going to have to give also. (Woman) "You have been on the other side of several issues of President Reagan, one is abortion, again he is firmly against abortion. Prayer in the schools. Has this caused a conflict between you
and the White House?" (Senator Packwood) "No, not serious. Clearly we are at opposite ends on the subject of abortion. I think a woman ought to have a right to make a choice if she wants. He doesn't. For three years though on that issue, he has not been a great problem. He says he's opposed to it and that's the end of it. What has bothered me is three times in a week, including the State of the Union message, he has highlighted that issue as if he's saying 'I'm going to put this on the front burner. I'm going to push it.' If that's the case, then there's gonna be, I think, quite a showdown between Congress and the President over that issue. (Woman) "I was wondering specifically for example, there seems to be quite a difference in opinion between Mr. Weaver and say-Mr. Smith that is- on the ?Woops? issue. What is your feeling about ?Woops? we're not going to [inaudible]?". (Senator Packwood) "We're not going to bail ?woops? out. There's not gonna be any federal bailout of money. Trying to interest the rest of the country in ?woops? is like trying to get somebody in Oregon to bail out TVA. They'd you know, you'd be laughed out of the state if you said 'let's put up several billion dollars to help the Tennessee Valley Authority bail itself out."
(Woman) It has been said that there is a general malaise on the part of the American voter, that we don't have a good track record in getting people registered to vote. Would you comment on that and how you feel about the Oregon voter?" (Senator Packwood) "Well one, we have a higher turnout in Oregon than you do in the nation. If there's a malaise, I don't find it in Oregon. I go around every place in the state including about half my time just to cover Eastern Oregon, and it doesn't matter if I'm in Portland or Pilot Rock. I get some very sharp questioning about the budget. I get 'em about wilderness. I get them about the Columbia Gorge. If there is a malaise, I don't find it, at least in this state." (Woman) "Would you say then that the Oregon voter is better informed perhaps?" (Senator Packwood) "We are on the average a better educated state than others." (Woman) You mentioned a minute ago the Columbia Gorge. And I know that you have proposed a bill about the Gorge. This is certainly of interest to people here in Oregon and to our viewers in Southwest Washington. Why, Senator, is your Columbia Gorge Bill important to this region?" (Senator Packwood) "It's important if you want to preserve the Gorge, as you know, and several million other Oregonians and Washingtonians have known it. If you want to keep condominiums
off the Washington side across Multnomah Falls. If you want to keep development outside of the incorporated cities at a minimum so that our children and grandchildren can enjoy that Gorge, my bill is important." (woman) "Senator, timber contracts have been very much in the news recently. What is your feeling about those contracts and what it has done again to Oregon's economy?" (Senator Packwood) "Well, I hope we can pass a bill. We almost had one last year, almost. Everybody in this world is entitled to finality, and these people in the timber business are entitled. They don't know whether they're going to get or not. If not, that's one thing. If they are, that's another. But to dangle it and dangle it it and never quite do anything about it. It's not fair to Oregon; it's not fair to them." (Woman) "Is Bob Packwood running for office? It has been said that you are running for the Presidency." (Senator Packwood) "I'm running for re-election in '86, and barring unforeseen circumstances, it's gonna be the last race. I think I'll run once more and retire. But I have no plans of running for the Presidency." (Jim Swenson) "I find that difficult to believe that he is going to retire. Does that seem surprising to you?"
(Gwyneth) "It does. The man is 51 years-old and he also told me in that interview, Jim, that there is no job he can imagine that's as much fun and rewarding as being a United States Senator. So, we'll have to see how he assesses that at the end of that term, if indeed he wins. I can't believe he would not run also." (Jim) "I find it surprising." [Find Another Fool-Quarterflash plays] [Music continues)] (Jim) "Almost everyone has certain traditions. But for one group in Oregon, tradition means something more than what parents or grandparents always did on holidays. It's a way of life, a way of life that is very private and makes many reluctant to have their pictures taken. Front Street producer Rhonda Barton narrates this report. (Rhonda) The United States has always been known as a melting pot of many nationalities. Today millions of people still immigrate to this country with one thought: to get a piece of the
American dream. But that's not true of one ethnic group that settled here in Oregon: The Russian Old Believers. In the last 20 years, nearly 4000 Old Believers have moved into the Woodburn area about 50 miles south of Portland. They came in search of a place where they could practice their religion freely and keep their traditions intact. Ironically the freedom they found here now poses a threat to the continuation of their strong community and their centuries-old way of life. (Woman) "our Grandparents didn't have all these things like these temptations. Whereas right now, our kids-I mean-I mean everything's right there and it's just, it's harder. It's a lot harder for us to bring them up the way our grandparents were brought up." (Rhonda) Her grandparents and her grandparents' ancestors were brought up believing in a strict interpretation of the Bible. Their religion touched almost every aspect of their daily life,
and it still does today. In Woodburn, Old Believer men still wear high- collared embroidered shirts. A sash around the waist symbolizes their obedience to God. The women also dress modestly in peasant dresses and headscarves. Tradition dictates that unmarried women must wear their hair in a single braid and married women wear two braids. The men keep their hair short, but must never cut their beards. Diet is also strictly regulated. The Old Believers don't eat meat or dairy products on certain days of the week. More recent religious restrictions include no television, no radio, and no movies. Those are hard rules to follow for some younger members of the community who want to be more like their American neighbors, and people who work with the Old Believers say they're seeing an easing of the restrictions. (Woman) In the beginning when I just start working, I would say they were more strict about certain things, like diet and holidays and even
games and singing and all that. But now it's more linear, I would say." (Rhonda) You only have to look at a couple like Ken and Irene Gotkuss to see that changes are taking place. (Irene) "I guess from seeing like American people the way they live, it's more comfortable like that and you don't have to support all these kids you know. There's just, I mean I don't know how my father does it." (Rhonda) The Gotkuss's plan to have only three children instead of the more typical ten or 12. Irene wears makeup and works as a teacher's aide. The couple has a TV and they want their daughter to go to college. In contrast, the Mulody family keeps more to the traditional ways, ways that the Old Believers brought with them when they fled Bolshevik Russia and settled in far flung places. [Male speaking in Russian] (Woman) "At first we went to Hong Kong and from Hong Kong we went to Argentina and after a few years in Argentina, we came to the United States."
[Woman speaking in Russian] "When we left China the reason was why we left China because of the Communism regime." [Woman speaking in Russian] "And we left Argentina because there was only so many people and we needed more." The Mullody's joined the Woodburn community 12 years ago and like many others here became berry farmers. They expect most of their 12 children to follow in their footsteps and they view public education as a threat to that goal. [Male speaking in Russian] "We think as long as a child knows how to read, write, and do the, you know, main things in English, it's enough, because if he'll go further, go to high school maybe college so he would probably leave our religion." (Rhonda) Because of that fear, most Old Believer families do not encourage their children to remain in school past the compulsory age limits set by the state. Girls rarely stay past the eighth
grade. Many are married by the age of 16. Boys usually don't go further than the tenth grade. As one youngster told field producer Elizabeth Allen. Other things are more important.' (Woman) Do you want to stay in school or do you want to graduate? (Boy) "Well not really, that's too long for me. I'll just plan to go this year and probably next year or so." (Woman) And then what do you want to do? (Boy) "Just get a job and start working." Whitburn schools have been working to change that, and they've had some success. Three Old Believers graduated from high school last year and a few girls are now attending ninth grade. Still, Woodburn officials recognize how touchy the education issue is, and they're treading lightly. (Male) "We put no pressure whatsoever on the Russian community. We cooperate with them and their beliefs. We meet with their elders, and we discuss educational philosophy: what we would like to see, what they would like to see,
and we come to a meeting of an agreement between the Russian elders and the school officials. (Rhonda) The Woodburn school district which is more than 30 percent Russian, employs several Russian-speaking aides and interpreters for parent- teacher meetings. But schools do not offer instruction in Russian, not even as a foreign language at the high school level. That's unlike the small school in nearby Parkerville. ?Sandi? ?Tymoshenko? teaches Old Believer children there to read and write Russian as well as English. She says that if the youngsters lose their language. They will probably lose their traditions as well. (Teacher) "They speak English all the time. Like if you talk to young kids now, they speak better English than Russian. And of course, their kids will speak even better English than their parents, you know, so they might lose it. That's why I guess this is one of the reasons they are trying to stick together just to group their society and keep the tradition because language
is a part of the tradition. If there will be no Russian language, there will be no traditions, no religion. (Rhonda) Worried that their children will become Americanized and forget their Old Believer ways, Some community members have left Oregon. They've moved to their own village in Alaska away from the temptations of the modern world. (woman) Trying to keep their religion, their tradition alive. And they think if they were more way away from civilization, from American influence, they could keep it longer. So, this is one of the reasons they move." (Rhonda) Those that remain here will go on teaching their children the old ways, tempered by the knowledge that it's impossible to avoid the modern ways. (Irene) "I think we would tell them about it, but I don't think I'd want to be as strict as my grandparents were to our parents. I mean that's just too hard. You know, the poor kids not gonna know what's happening here." (Jim) Although many of the younger members of the community do seem to want to be more modern, when asked they say that they wouldn't
think of ever leaving the church or marrying outside the community. (Gwyneth) Interesting dilemma Jim. If you visited the local clubs in the late 70s, you probably remember a band called Seafood Mama. And if you listened to a radio since then, you know that Seafood Mama has become Quarterflash. Well, Quarterflash is quickly becoming an international success story. Eileen Pincus Walker has been following the band's success and has this report. (Eileen) Quarterflash has been called the hottest thing to come out of the Northwest musically since Jeanette McDonald and Nelson Eddy. (Man) "It's just good for Portland, like to hear Portland- based band make it big." (Eileen) And make it big they have. Quarterflash signed a major recording contract before they had a single nationwide hit, and their first album turned gold with over a half-million sold in just eight weeks. (Woman) "I like her voice and her range is pretty high and I like the soprano. She sounds really good. Not much more. They're good music. They got a good beat." [cheering & clapping]
(Eileen) It was just over five years ago that Marv and Rindy Ross quit their teaching jobs in Bend, Oregon, gathered up their savings, and agreed to give themselves a year and a half to make it in music. (Male) "You gonna come tonight? Alright!" (Eileen) It looks like the Deschutes County School District has lost two of its schoolteachers for good. (Craig) "Hi [inaudible]. This is Craig Walker. Good morning. I remember these people singing this song when they were still Seafood Mama, and only those of us who live around here know them as that. Elsewhere in the country, they are Quarterflash. Ms. Ross and company, here's Harden My Heart at 62 KGW. [singing] [singing] [singing] (Eileen) Harden My Heart, the song that started it all, was recorded on a basement tape recorder and Quarterflash
manager Jay Isaac used it to achieve the near-impossible: convincing KOIN TV in Portland to feature the band on prime-time local television. (Rindy) "One day he came and sat down. I think I can get you an hour long TV concert here in Portland. We said, 'right Jay, you do that'. It was just like, it was 'this guy is in the ozone.' And he came back a week later and says, 'Well I did it. It's set for this day,' and we just all panicked. [Harden My Heart plays] (Eileen) The group didn't even have a record to push. So. seven hundred copies of Harden My Heart were quickly pressed and distributed to record stores. The song eventually convinced Geffen Records in Los Angeles to do something it had never done: sign an unknown band, and one without a national hit. At the same time, Seafood Mama broke up when arguments over the band's direction came to a head.
Rindy and Marv signed up four new members of another Portland band, Pilot, and dropped any last remnants of a country folk sound. Jeff Charles plays lead guitar and composes. Rick DiGiallonardo plays keyboard. Brian David Willis is on drums, and Rick Gooch is on bass. (Male) "You know I think initially there was some skepticism on, just in the industry's part, that a band could break from a town like this." (Rindy) "Well I think what I felt was 'oh look at these cute kids from Oregon. It was more of a 'aren't they refreshing,' which has its' own disgusting qualities, I think." (Eileen) Despite hard driving rock 'n' roll concerts, Quarterflash is described by promoters as wholesome, all-American sounding, not an image rock groups usually cultivate. [music] (Rindy) "Yeah I could- I could easily get rid of some of that,
because I'm not exactly sure. I mean, We're nice people but I'm not really sure completely where that came from, because we're not that nice." [laughs] (Eileen) But they are careful about the Quarterflash image. They recently turned down an offer to do a soda pop commercial, because they felt the product contained too much caffein. And they've also refused to do beer commercials. (Male) "Quarterflash. I can go to an adult contemporary station; I can go to an album rock station, or I can go to a top 40 station and still be received with open arms, and they'll be there waiting for the record. Whereas other types of groups, you really can't as far as their sound. It's a contemporary rock sound. It's the kind of sound where a mother of 30 or 40 would like Quarterflash and her daughter will also like Quarterflash." (Rindy) "Pop to me means accessible,
And. I want I do think that our music has, for the most part, been fairly accessible music and you can you can hum it. I'm comfortable with being a commercial band, because I do believe that you can be artistic and commercial at the same time." (Eileen) And at the core of that successful sound are the soulful lyrics and simple melodies written mostly by husband Marv Ross. But then there's also that saxophone. [music] (Rindy) "Vocally I'm really not a screamer, but I can make my sax scream and So it's a it's a great extension of my voice, and I think that I can play the sax kind of passionately." [saxophone music]
(Eileen) And the passion sells. Six to eight months of the year are now spent on tours, and the group is recognizable enough to headline around the U.S., as well as open for rock superstars like Elton John and Linda Ronstadt. When they are back home, the pace doesn't let up. Since manager Jay Isaacs suggested Rindy move to the forefront, she has handled nearly all the interviews and appearances, and if she tires of the questions, particularly the ones about what happens if the next album fails, she doesn't show it. (Reporter) "What if it doesn't do real well? Is that [inaudible] Quarterflash?" (Rindy) "No, no, make another one. (laughs) (Reporter) "It just keep going?" (Rindy) "That's right." I do realize that that we are in- the business that we are in-is To quote Joni Mitchell The Star making machine. That's what it's all about.
And I would be deluding myself to say that that is not. How we are being groomed. (Reporter) Just neat and everything you thought it would be? What are the surprises?" (Eileen)The promotions and interviews and concerts continue. But for how long? According to Warner Brothers Greg Lee, probably as long as there are rock 'n' roll fans. (Greg) "The people that bought the Frankie Avalon records, or the Chuck Berry records, I think technically those people still like to rock no matter how old they are." (Woman) "Please welcome Rindy Ross." (Eileen) And Greg Lee also says that Quarterflash has put Portland on the map in the music industry. In fact, Geffen Records has signed another Portland band by the name of Black and Blue. While Quarter flash meanwhile is at work on their third album. Since the publication of the controversial president's report on excellence in the schools
education has been the focus of many debates nationwide. Parents concerned with their children's education are increasingly turning to alternative schools to find what they think is lacking in public education today. Elizabeth Allen has this report on some of the alternative schools here in Oregon. Public schools have been on the budgetary chopping block in the last few years. Cutbacks have caused school closures and overcrowding. Standard Test scores have shown a steady decline since 1963. And many parents are dissatisfied with the education their children are getting in the public school system. Nationally and in Oregon people are looking to private or independent education to fill the academic gap. The public schools have left but are these schools in Oregon filling the gap. It's a backlash kind of feeling and people wanting to have their children have a more personalized education which means smaller classrooms, teachers who are going to put out an extra bit whether they pay for it or not. And that seems to happen
in independent schools. More people are opting for independent schools in this country than earlier and that is related of course to the fact that there has been over the years some disenchantment with the offerings of public education in this country. And part of the problem we've gone through is expecting too little of both the students. And the teachers administration and ourselves as parents. But I think if you have those expectations, that implies a commitment to provide the resources to meet those expectations and I think that the difference in the expectations and the willingness to provide the resources to meet those expectations is where the disenchantment occurs. So it's Al Davidson's belief that people want better public education but aren't willing to pay for it. Oregon's public schools rate high in the nation in
almost all areas of education. Yet private schools flourish here as well. Most independent schools in Oregon have a religious affiliation but there are several elementary and high schools that are not church related. What role do you think private education plays in Oregon? I don't think it plays a role contrary to- to what the public school does but maybe complimentary to what the school- the public school does. And it is some kids that are not going to be served well by as large a system as the public schools have. The largest group of non-church related schools in the state are the Montessori schools. As a grade school they give a child more freedom of choice and a broader curriculum than the public schools. Almost any child can appear gifted provided they are given a stimulating and exciting environment in which every day is a learning experience for them. Every day there's so much more to take in. Most educators agree that children in private schools do better academically than those in the public system. Not that the teachers are better but classes at a private school
average about 10 students. But the public schools usually have classes of over 20. Parents and students feel that more individualized attention is a major plus to an education. The ratio of child to teacher was something that you could never never get in a public school. It's one to ten. And that plus the devotion of the teachers down here in the really family commitment to everything. Both my children attended here and it was really nice to send them both to the same school, have them come and share some of the same experiences. But they weren't in- one wasn't in a classroom down the hall and they never ever saw each other. They were'nt separated. What made you decide to come here. I kind of felt like a number public school I. Was so large that I didn't feel I was getting a lot of individual attention that I needed. I think when I compare public schools and private. When it thinks about private school is that you have 10 people in a class and you. You have a chance to be with a teacher who is also like a friend.
Private schools also have a broader curriculum, including foreign languages for primary children. Students at an independent school are rarely exposed to children who dislike school or are bored and many private schools have stricter academic requirements. They also have a more select student body. Several independent schools have entrance requirements. Even so, schools like Catlin Gable and Oregon Episcopal School have long waiting lists of students who want to attend. Because of their high standards, select student body and cost, independent schools have long had the reputation of being elitist. Most independent administrators say it isn't true. They say it may cost a lot to go to a private school but rarely is the school itself rich. We're elitist in the sense that I think we're trying to represent a certain kind of learning. And asking for real thinking and real grapple with material. But I don't see what's the matter with that. There's nothing elitist about this school. It's just that the people who take bother. To take
the trouble and it is a trouble to send a child to a school like this, have to have a commitment. And so the only- all agreed to which were in a sense favored by the- by the enthusiasm and the commitment of those parents. Parents who choose independent schools say it is because they want the best education for their children. And educators say that parental involvement is the key to a good education. This is one of over 300 private schools registered in Oregon. Most are preschools but the children here range from ages 4 through 12. It's very unusual to find a private school in such a rural setting but because of strong teacher and parent involvement, this schools managed to operate for the last 10 years. Parents say they like independent education because they have more control over their child's schooling. They can shop around for the type of learning environment they want and have a say over that environment because they pay for it. I think you have more of a say in what's going on because when you're- when you're doling out
the cash in hand to the school they listen. And when it's being diluted down through a system, I don't feel that that you have much of a say- you still have a say but not nearly the say that you do in a private system. According to Al Davidson many parents don't realize they're paying for the public system too. I think that they probably exercise more say in a private school if you're paying somewhere between 500 and 1500 dollars a year for your child to go to school, you're going to approach it in a little different manner. A lot of parents don't realize they're paying the same kind of fees in the public school but they're not exercising as much of their parental authority and their parental rights. Most educators agree it is possible for children to get as good an education in public schools as they do in private schools. Public school officials claim that if faced with only the need to school children they would do extremely well. But public schools
by law must fulfill many non-academic functions. Something that independent schools needn't worry about. And some parents feel that academically the public schools are lacking. When you're educating a large number of children, 430,000 students in our schools. And you have a responsibility to educate everyone. It's- it's a little difficult sometimes to make sure that every single child gets what he or she deserves. although That's our goal. That goal may be further hindered by tuition tax breaks in question again this year. Tax credits for many would be a strong incentive to chose Independent Education. Independent administrators have a divided opinion though. Some feel a little competition wouldn't hurt the public system and tax credits would help the parents of independent school children. Others don't want the government intervention that would go with it. Public administrators claim the loss of revenue would be near fatal right now with the schools already in financial troubles.
Also at issue in Oregon is the regulation of private schools. Oregon has one of the loosest systems of standards for private schools in the nation. Independent schools in Oregon aren't even required to register with the State Board of Education. Administrators say Oregon should have some form of regulation for teacher certification and curriculum but agree that it is a difficult issue to deal with. Obviously any time you start talking about regulating private schools you get into a church state question. How much regulation is too much and is state interference with religion particularly as it relates to parochial schools. Yet on the other hand the situation in Oregon is that there can be a private school with no oversight. No accountability to anyone. And in fact could be out there just ripping off the public. Private administrators disagree. They say the essence of independent education is being free as an alternative to public
education. Setting standards would infringe on that freedom. It so happens that more than half of our faculty here in ?lower? school has Oregon certification but that's irrelevant. What is relevant is quality teaching and quality people who meet with kids. That is what truly matters not the license or certificate that one has from a state. I think schools stand or fall on their own merits. If a school is irresponsible, lackadaisical or incompetent people aren't going to pay tuition to send their children there. You could have parents sending their children to a school with all the best intentions on the part of the parents. And in fact the children are not being taught what the school says they're being taught. And of course once you find out it's going to be too late and it's the kids that are going to have to put up with that for the rest of their life. Just as public education isn't right for every child, private schools aren't always the best
choice. While independent schools usually have higher standards and better academic results, it is the commitment of parents and the quality of the teaching that makes education better public or private. Nascoan Valley School has recently expanded to include seventh and eighth grades now has a full course of French. In the future, they hope to offer summer sessions in French and many other languages for older students. [music] Wherever there is ivory the art of scrimshaw can be found here. And here in the Northwest close to
Alaska's supply of fossilized ivory scrimshaw is flourishing. In the 19th century men at sea made scrimshaw using subjects they knew best. That was of course from the nautical world. Well today scrimshanders are producing a greater variety and higher quality than ever before. [music] Scrimshaw is carving. or engraving. into the ivory filling up the grooves that are engraved. With. Paint. Ink. oil On the sailing ships the whalers used the dirt. on their hands To fill up those. But basically, it's filling up the grooves and- and in so doing an image appears on the surface of the ivory. Artist Bonnie Schulte
uses a sixteenth inch drill bit sharpened to a fine point to draw curved lines into the tusk. She uses an Exacto knife for stippling. That becomes the shading in her designs. It's such an exacting tiny miniature art form that the slightest change in the way that these things are used can either make the scrimshaw look, let's see, rough or clean. I wear thick magnification glasses that were prescribed by an optometrist so it's a very intense experience to make scrimshaw. Schulte as a fine arts graduate of Willamette University. She began to screamshander in 1976. She's lived in Newport on the Oregon coast for 10 years, where the environment inspires her work. Often Schulte explores the Yaquina Bay with her friend Dan studying the many forms of
wildlife that can be found there. In our boat experiences, I'm constantly excited by. All the different kinds of. Animals. and it's funny because it does take me into wildlife scrimshaw. I have always loved realism. I find it to be a challenge to say something meaningful or even powerful on a tiny surface on a very tiny object. And I feel that since I was a painter before I started scrimshaw I- naturally my scrimshaw looks like little paintings. It forces me to design in my purest form. There can be no confusion in it or it's lost. [sounds] Currently Schulte is working on a series of knife handles for the Gutmann Cutlery Company
based in Mount Vernon New York. The commission calls for 84 sets of knives with four knives in each set. Each of the four depicts a different animal on the endangered species list. The sets will retail for twenty six hundred dollars each and the project will last for 18 months. It's a reproduction kind of thing that I'm doing even though each knife is hand carved. All exactly the same to the minutest detail. No ivory is used in these knife handles. A synthetic substance, micarta, provides a good working surface for the pieces. Micarta is- is material that is manmade. It's paper that has been pressed or impregnated with resin and it- the combination of those two materials produces a substance very much like ivory only its
consistency for scrimshaw is perfect. For many years scrimshaw was done on tusks taken from living animals. But today legislation governs the use of fresh ivory and it is increasingly hard to obtain. So that she does not create a demand for fresh ivory Schulte uses only micarta or fossilized tusk from extinct animals. We work on the fossilized ivories and even those we consider to be a very precious material and to not be squandered. But to create something on a fresh ivory such as fresh walrus, fresh elephant ivory, whale's teeth; any of those are absolutely taboo in my studio. The ancient Ivory's that Schulte uses are either mammoth or mastodon. These large mammals were common in North America during the latest glacial age, 20,000 years ago. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the use of fossilized ivory for billiard balls,
piano keys, and other articles, before the advent of plastics, decreased the ancient ivory supply. Today it is still available but always increasing in value. I happened to be at the right place and the right time when scrimshaw was just getting started. Eileen Shattuck is not an artist, but a Portland dealer in ivory carvings from many parts of the Northwest. What started out as a hobby grew into a full time job for her. She points out that each finished piece of scrimshaw has employed several people along the way in its production. A cutter for lapidary work, the scrimshander to decorate the ivory and often another artist to set a piece in gold or silver. Bonnie Schulte is only one of nearly 20 artists whose work she markets in Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii. I do a lot of work with Bonnie through the mail and every time I get her work in it's like Christmas. It's just fun to look at it. Each year since 1977 Schulte has done a piece on the theme of the lady and the
tiger. Shattuck keeps these in her personal collection. In Newport Bonnie Schulte's work can be found at the Wood Gallery. Store owner, Kelly Barker, has carries scrimshaw since the shop opened in 1979. I'd say there's a real good demand for it. It's just coming of age as an art form. It has changed from a craft and into an art really over the last decade. When I think of the scrimshanters I think of about. Three people that are. Taught Bonnie is one of them. Stan Gillis owner of the Real Mother Goose, a fine crafts gallery, also admires her work. She was a painter at one time and that comes across into her work. The intricacy of her work, the shadowing and everything that she does and I think probably more than anything is just the coloration in her work. Probably the finest work that's available anywhere in the country is available in the Northwest. Because she is well known, the future may bring more commissions and new artistic challenges
for Bonnie Schulte and she will continue to make her home work at the Oregon coast. There's a kind of the power or a passion that goes on living so near the end of the continent. Right next to such a powerful force as the ocean. As a place to become inspired or just to find solitude, its very rich and very enduring. [music] That's beautiful stuff. And you know I was- I was happy to learn that- that we don't hunt down the mammals that bare ivory in order to obtain ivory for doing scrimshaw. Animals alive today. Actually the Marine Mammal Act and the Endangered Species Act passed in the '70s severely limit they use or sale of fresh ivory. And as you can see from this story scrimshanders are careful
about the kind of ivory they use. They are, Jim, extremely sensitive to this issue. For that matter we are extremely sensitive to the fact that our hour is up. Until next week for Front Street Weekly. Good night. Good night [music] [music] [music] [music] [music]
- Front Street Weekly
- Episode Number
- Contributing Organization
- Oregon Public Broadcasting (Portland, Oregon)
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- AAPB Contributor Holdings
Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB)
Identifier: 113060.0 (Unique ID)
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- Chicago: “Front Street Weekly; 318,” 1984-02-22, Oregon Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed November 28, 2023, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-153-07gqnmcc.
- MLA: “Front Street Weekly; 318.” 1984-02-22. Oregon Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. November 28, 2023. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-153-07gqnmcc>.
- APA: Front Street Weekly; 318. Boston, MA: Oregon Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-153-07gqnmcc