Vol. 5    No. 9
MAY 6, 2010

The Capital City Hues
(608) 241-2000

Subscription Information:
The Capital City Hues
PO Box 259712
Madison, WI 53725
($45 a year)
Contact Number:
(608) 241-2000
Advertising: Claire G. Mendoza


Jonathan Gramling
Publisher & Editor

Clarita G. Mendoza
Sales Manager

Contributing Writers
Rita Adair, Ike Anyanike, Paul
Barrows, Alfonso Zepeda
Capistran, Theola Carter, Fabu,
Andrew Gramling, Lang Kenneth
Haynes, Eileen Cecille Hocker,
Heidi Pascual, Jessica Pharm,
Laura Salinger, Jessica Strong,
& Martinez White

Heidi @
      As I begin to write my column this morning — the last thing I have to do before I send the last page off to
the printer — I feel like I have a lot on my mind, but nothing to say. I guess that happens after a long night when
you are thinking other people’s thoughts and put your own in some far recess of your brain. But then a few
things started to pop through the veil of fatigue.
      For the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling like I’ve gone through a divorce or a death because of Heidi
Pascual’s departure to The Philippines last month. It has those feelings but it isn’t a divorce because I can
fully appreciate why she left because of the confluence of familial and economic reasons that made a return to
The Philippines the most logical choice. And it isn’t a death for who else has been sending me e-mails
reminding me to take my vitamins and not work too much.
     Yet there is a tremendous sense of loss that is mitigated by the wonders of the Internet. There is that sense
of loneliness that creeps in during those lulls when nothing is going on and I have to face the starkness of my
     And Heidi has made tremendous contributions to my life professionally over the past 11 years. I doubt if I
would have founded The Capital City Hues back in 2006 without her. There was always a sense of adventure
when we were establishing The Capital City Hues and Asian Wisconzine. Each of us worked long,
unpredictable hours that only another journalist could truly understand. She has been a companion like no
other can be.
     Heidi is now ensconced with her grandchildren and children in Quezon City, a suburb of Manila. She has
been busy getting everything straightened out as only a mother — and grandmother — knows how to do. And
she is still busy being the webmaster of The Capital City Hues website as well as publishing the online version
of Asian Wisconzine when she isn’t busy taking care of everyone else.
     I will be eternally grateful for everything that Heidi has done for me. I think her quiet contributions to our
Madison community will be missed as time goes on. In particular, I think the Asian American communities in
the Madison area will begin to fully appreciate the gem of a woman who was in their presence, a gem that they
let slip between their fingers.
     I was at a meeting last night and Jackie Hunt was talking about the Mother’s Day party that she is hosting
at the Lussier Community Education Center to give appreciation to many of the mothers from the neighborhood.
And it made me think about the fact that I am at the age and circumstance where there are no mothers
immediately in my life that would make Mothers Day an important day to celebrate.
     And that made me kind of sad. As I type this column, my own mother looks out at me from the last drivers’
license that she had before she died in September 2005. I keep it laying on my desk for me to remember her
and quite possibly for her to watch over me.
     My mother was quite a woman. She and my dad— but mainly she— raised eight nice children. How she did
that I will never know. After we children left the turbulence and sibling rivalry of childhood behind, we got
together and learned much to our surprise that each of us thought that they were mom’s favorite. Eight children
felt that way.
     My mom was aware of the details of each of our lives and what happened to us. She knew that I loved to
take cold pizza for lunch when I was in grade school. When I went to school at Alcorn State University in
Mississippi, it was my mom who wrote to me each week, placed newspaper clippings in the envelope along
with $5 to treat myself to a snack.
     When we were sick as children, she healed us. As adults, she played cards with us, went camping with us
and went on long-drive trips out West with us. My mom was the nexus of communication in the family who
kept us aware of each other’s lives as we were busy pursuing our own as adults.
     I can’t help but think that I like my siblings as people even today because of the way our parents raised us.
After all, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Happy Mother’s Day Mom Claire! You were the best mother a
son — or daughter could ever have. Thank You!
Reflections/Jonathan Gramling
                        Heidi and Mothers Day