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Gwen Woods remembers Mario in touching short doc

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Gwen Woods vows to speak for her late son in a new short documentary presented by KQED’s “Truly CA” series. (Courtesy photo)

In honor of what would have been Mario Woods’ 29th birthday on Sunday, KQED is sharing a touching short film by Bay Area filmmaker Mohammad Gorjestani.

In the seven-and-a-half minute short “Happy Birthday, Mario Woods,” the young man’s mother Gwen Woods remembers her child — who was fatally shot by San Francisco police in 2016, causing community outrage — and is seen dealing with her grief. She’s shown at his grave, sharing memories of him at his funeral and with the public, and, finally, celebrating his birthday, with a cake and candles, in a room of loved ones.

Commenting that “he got a raw, raw, raw deal,” she says, “My job is to let everyone know he was loved” and adds, “I’ll be your voice, Mario.”

The movie is part of KQED’s Truly CA Happy Birthday Project, a series of portraits of the mothers, family and close friends of victims of recent police killings in America. To watch, visit http://bit.ly/2Nl8nmN.

NEED INSPIRATION?

Folks looking for a pick-me-up might want to check out the website “What Would You Tell Your Teenage Self?” which serves up sage advice from some of the world’s most successful people.

For example: Michelle Obama said, “Walk away from friendships that make you feel small and insecure” and Arianna Huffington said, “Stop worrying. There is so much unnecessary worry. So many unnecessary self-judgments. So many negative fantasies about the future.”

From Maya Angelou: “Find some beautiful art, and admire it, and realize that that was created by human beings just like you, no more human, no less” and from JK Rowling: “Be yourself. Be easier on yourself. Become yourself, as fully as possible.”

The site came in the wake of a Reddit session in which Bill Gates was asked the question. He answered: “Smartness is not single dimensional and not quite as important as I thought it was back then.”

For the full list, visit https://adview.online/c/what-would-you-tell-your-teenage-self/

SCENIC DRIVE

Flight Network, a website dedicated to world traveling, asked more than 500 travel journalists, agencies, bloggers and editors to name their World’s Best Journeys for 2018. Coming at No. 5 on the list of top 10 was California’s scenic Pacific Coast Highway drive, starting in San Francisco and ending in San Diego. No.1 was an expedition to Antarctica. For details, visit www.flightnetwork.com.

STAMP THIS!

The U.S. Postal Service announced that San Francisco photographer Gary Crabbe’s nature images (of Death Valley National Park, Grasslands Wildlife Management Area, Yosemite, Crater Lake, Orinda, Edna Valley and Livermore) are among 20 in a new stamp series called O Beautiful Forever released this month.

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