March 15 – 21, 2017

OUR ORIGINAL SANTA CRUZ PUBLIC LIBRARY. With funds donated by Andrew Carnegie this great structure went up in 1908 and being Santa Cruz, it was destroyed in 1966.Obviously it was replaced by what we have now.                                                

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection.

Additional information always welcome: email bratton@cruzio.com

DATELINE March 13, 2017

DALI & DISNEY. Talk about your odd couple…yet these two guys had some dreams in common..

ROBIN WILLIAMS MEETS GORILLA

MAGIC . Tons of slight of hand on You Tube but this one really got to me…

FIRST THE BEACH FLATS, NOW THE POST OFFICE. I’m guessing many of us are wondering about the chain link fence that was put up last week around the U.S. Post Office, Santa cruz branch. Is this another Trump government /police tactic against the homeless like last month’s raid on Beach Flats against immigrants? Did our Santa Cruz Police put up the fence…which branch of what government is responsible. The post office is Federal property, and just exactly what laws were the homeless breaking when they slept and hung out there? It’s been days and still I haven’t seen a word in the Santa Cruz Sentinel…am I missing something here? By the way now that the Santa Cruz police have admitted to having a permanent Homeland Security office and official in their building and since they said they would be “evicting” him soon…just when will that be?

MORE POST OFFICE FENCE NEWS.

The NAACP Santa Cruz County Branch, and the Santa Cruz chapter of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom invite you to take part in a community reading of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech. It’s where he connected militarism, capitalism, and racism – an electrifying speech. We will read it from 1 – 3 pm on April 2nd – close to the 50th anniversary of the speech (April 4th) – on the steps of the downtown Post Office.  There are many more questions and opposition to that fence. The Post Office Building is a designated Historic building and to alter or deface or erect new additions is illegal. Who’s in charge of all this, who’s behind it?

RUNNING FOR CITY COUNCIL? Just like Bruce McPherson gave up the Republican Party just in time, and Ryan Coonerty and Mike Rotkin ditching de-sal in split seconds we are seeing our local Santa Cruz City Council future being re-shaped. First J.M Brown who lost his first City Council campaign, now attending The People’s Democratic Club (PDC) meeting trying to score new left – progressive votes!!! Then we have Mike Rotkin almost a guaranteed council candidate, actually agreeing and having his name associated with Rick Longinotti’s in The Sentinel. Another topic worth mumbling about is whether or not Cynthia Mathews would run again. She’s lost big popularity according to the last election results and insiders say she’s also lost some of her usual force and drive. WRITE THIS DOWNCynthia Chase and Richelle Noroyan are up for re-election, and David Terrazas is out after 8 years.

WELLS FARGO & SANTA CRUZ CITY MONEY? Our city apparently has millions invested in Wells Fargo Bank for various purposes and tasks as well as in other financial institutions. How can we citizens (voters) get the city to stop Wells Fargo… and their crooked business deals and screwing their customers? Plus the no less serious investing and supporting the Dakota Access Pipeline project? Both Seattle and Davis, California pulled their accounts with Wells Fargo. If we are really, really going to be a world class city we need to join them.

SANTA CRUZ …. A “WORLD CLASS CITY”?

As the U.S. Edition of The Guardian stated….”While housing shortages and homeless epidemics have afflicted communities up and down the west coast, a major crisis has emerged in Santa Cruz, the liberal seaside city 80 miles south of San Francisco, known internationally for its surfing and laid-back boardwalk attractions. With a swelling presence of Airbnb short-term rentals and university students, Santa Cruz has increasingly become unaffordable and inhospitable to many longtime low-income workers and middle-class families, and experts say the tech boom and housing crunch in nearby Silicon Valley is exacerbating the displacement”.

The Guardian continues… ‘Least affordable’ housing in the US. Santa Cruz, which was originally controlled by Mexico, was incorporated as a California town in 1866. The city is constrained by mountains and the ocean but has steadily grown since the gold rush, attracting agriculture and commercial fishing along with a vibrant resort community and tourism industry. Housing development has not kept pace with the growth of the population, which is now 62,000 in the city and 270,000 total in Santa Cruz County. The county has added roughly one housing unit for every 10 new residents in recent years, according to county housing manager Julie Conway”. AND in spite of this we are hearing and seeing the usual Business suspects like the Chamber of Commerce and developers up the gazoo clamoring to bring in more big business, build more high rises and so on. They use the same old numb & dumb slogan ” Growth will bring in the taxes which support our civil services’ which has been disproven eons ago. Stop the growth, stop the development. It’s never too late. Look at San Jose por ejemplo.

CABRILLO MUSIC FEST’S BIG NEW SEASON. The new music director Cristian Macelaru has lined up some guaranteed big attractions for this years Cabrillo Music Festival. When you have names like Lou Harrison, John Adams, Evelyn Glennie and Jake Heggie you know some serious planning has been done. This season’s highlights include seven world premieres, one US premiere, three West Coast premieres, plus 11 composers in residence. They are… Karim Al-Zand, Clarice Assad, Gerald Barry, Michael Gandolfi, Aaron Jay Kernis, David T. Little, Cindy McTee, Christopher Rountree, Gabriella Smith and James Stephenson. Special guest artists include Dame Evelyn Glennie (percussion), Jennifer Frautschi (violin), Gemma New (conductor), Clarice Assad (piano/vocals), Keita Ogawa (percussion), Jason Hardink (piano), and Jonathan Lemalu (bass-baritone). Go here for more details and figure ways to get your tickets early. http://cabrillomusic.org/2017-season-announcement . Also IF you have an extra room or space and want to partake in the extra fun of the Festival, share a space/ bedroom with a Festival musician…especially if you live near the Civic auditorium. Then too you could volunteer to be an usher or donate $$ or help out at the street Fair. Remember, no more concerts at San Juan Bautista Mission!

LOSING THE SANTA CRUZ IDENTITY.

I urge you to take a walk to the new construction site at 555 Pacific Avenue to view the future of Santa Cruz if development interests are left unchecked. It is just around the corner from the first roundabout. You can’t miss it. It towers over and dwarfs every other familiar landmark. Its bulk and scale transform the area into an unrecognizable urban wind tunnel. Soon, its 99 rental units will be occupied, with maybe 4 to a unit, and this formerly quiet stretch of the town will lose its identity. If it were the only example there might be less concern. However, such developments are on track for approval (or have already been approved) across Santa Cruz, particularly for downtown and the eastside although the far westside has its share of dense new ugly.

This transformation of Santa Cruz has its supporters. Of course those who stand to make money from the growth are first in line. City planners seem to like it, either because it brings in money to hire more planners or they don’t live in town. Otherwise one would expect the staff reports to temper such growth and require developers to keep to height and zoning ordinances rather than continuously requesting variances, which the council majority approves. Newcomers who have no feel for what gives this town its character don’t seem to mind the growth and urbanization so long as they can get their new downhill mountain bike trails pushed into Pogonip and De Laveaga. Some progressives see this as “smart growth” and as long as folks get out of their cars and onto their bikes, see no problem with density and loss of identity. Tethered to smart phones and whatever new technology is around the corner, more and more people are losing connection to and seeing value in the human landscape from the past.

Local historian Ross Gibson as quoted in the Sentinel of 2/28/17 said it best: “Santa Cruz is constantly renewing itself and always pretending that there was never anybody there before them. They’re taking over a neighborhood without any identity as far as they’re concerned. We have a tough time in Santa Cruz on the historic end, trying to pass down from one generation to the next, the things that are of value to us and an identity that made the community what a wonderful place it is today.”

Examples of such local loss are legion. La Bahia was a big one. Curious how deliberate neglect on the part of the Seaside Company and some peeling paint sent many into the “tear down and transform” camp. There is little we can do about such losses now. But there is much that remains that is worth fighting for. The Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf is a big one. There are many who see that effort as worthwhile as evidenced by the 2500 people who signed the “Don’t Morph the Wharf” petition, both locals and visitors alike. Another is the Downtown Recovery Plan, the transformation of downtown with up to 85 feet high buildings, especially along Front Street adjacent to the San Lorenzo River. This Plan is currently wending its way through the approval process and comments on the Initial Study are due Friday March 17th. You can find it here

Proponents of this new urbanization like to label those of us who oppose it as “out of touch” or “nostalgic”. “Get over it”, they say. Or that growth is inevitable and this is the best way to accommodate it. Nothing is inevitable about human action. It’s a struggle; its political; its difficult but nothing is pre-determined. Far from being nostalgic, we see the human value in what is left of the unique character of Santa Cruz in a rapidly homogenizing, urbanizing world. We also see the finite nature of natural resources that cannot accommodate the bottomless pit of demand on the part of the wealthy to live in Santa Cruz, nor the town’s ability to cater to the unfettered growth of UCSC. The future of Santa Cruz is at a tipping point. Money, power and influence heavily weight one side. Ordinary folks speaking out can as always tip the scales.

~Gillian Greensite is a long time local activist, a member of Save Our Big Trees and the Santa Cruz chapter of IDA, International Dark Sky Association http://darksky.org  Plus she’s an avid ocean swimmer, hiker and lover of all things wild).

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majority report #8                                         March 13, 2017

“PSYCHO-S**T, TEAM-BUILDING AND TAKING BACK THE POWER”

First, some good stuff that happened at the city council.

A two-way bike path on Pacific Avenue from Church to Cathcart Street was recently approved by the city council. This measure has been a long time in coming and…might this action be the preface for what residents have been crying out for ever since I arrived in 1980: a car-free Pacific Avenue?! This undertaking by the council should be a boon for cyclists wanting to go toward the beach through downtown. In addition, the council also voted to look for a vendor to run a “Bike-Share” program. Think Portland or Minneapolis or NYC where bike-share programs are enormously popular and really work. I have my fingers crossed that it will be successful. It will begin with a modest fifty bikes and five stations.

The council also passed a “Declaration of the City of Santa Cruz as a Sanctuary for all its Residents.” We are a real, affirmative, legislatively-approved “sanctuary city” now. Which by the way, does mean something, despite what mainstream media pundits might say. It means that we welcome immigrants here to Surf City, and we will go out of our way to offer you protection and no one should make no mistake about that! (Gawd, I love double negatives.)

All these decisions were unanimous.

Also, once again it was reiterated by certain city authorities that it’s just a vicious rumor, spread by “certain people,” that public parking will actually be taken off of the Soquel and Water Street corridors anytime soon. That is good news too for many Eastsiders. No ordinance yet to preserve the parking, but we’re working toward that!

Now, the psycho-S*** and navel-gazing part of council life (it’s important though)

click here to continue (link expands, click again to collapse)

~(Chris Krohn is a father, writer, activist, former Santa Cruz City Councilmember (1998-2002) and Mayor (2001-2002). He’s been running the Environmental Studies Internship program at UC Santa Cruz for the past 12 years. He was elected last November to another 4-year term on the Santa Cruz City Council).

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THE BOARD ROOM WAS FULL AND OVERFLOWING…
Last Tuesday’s (3/7) Soquel Creek Water District Board meeting drew another standing-room-only crowd from the neighborhoods near the District offices. The District has been seriously considering the installation of a sewage treatment plant in that location, immediately adjacent to a quiet residential neigborhood. Those people feel the District staff has not been forthright in the information presented and are paying little attention to the neighborhood concerns. They are not happy. Here is a link to the neighborhood online petition.

The Board started off by discrediting nearly all of the Water for Santa Cruz information. I had already been publicly accused by Ron Duncan at the previous meeting of speaking false information, but without any substantiation. He never responded to my message asking for clarification on exactly what I said that was false. The Board then made all the people wait for the item on the agenda relative to the Carollo Engineer presentation on contaminants. I had seen this presentation before at the Secondary Supply Subcommittee meeting, and I noticed that this time, there were no charts or information about what contaminants persist through various stages of treatment process. I was still outside in the hallway at that point but tried to look in to see the presentation screens. He also addressed the issue of high energy demand that is inherent with the reverse osmosis process. He quickly said that it takes less than desal, so it is a good choice.

By the time the Board finally let people speak, many had left.  Many talked about the lack of clear and honest communication that the District has had with the community. Many are worried about their property values. I raised the issue of the later item on the agenda where the Board would consider a draft agreement with Santa Cruz City for wastewater. The Board insisted it is not a draft contract, just a memorandum of understanding. I also talked about NDMA and the fact that it makes it through the reverse osmosis process about 50% of the time. The presenter insisted that it is all removed by UV, but that is not what the presentation showed at the Subcommittee meeting… NDMA was there, but below State health levels. There were 17 other contaminants that made it through R/O, but were shown to be removed by UV disinfection.

The Board then took a break, at which nearly all of the audience left. There was then, albeit out of order for the agenda listing, a very interesting presentation by Mr. Vind from Denmark, representing a company that has sponsored him to live in Los Gatos for three years to promote the use of Electro-Resistivity Technology (ERT) to map salinity in groundwater supplies, including areas UNDER the Bay. He mentioned Dr. Knight from Stanford, who has recently published her work using this technology to assess the sea water intrusion along the beaches from Seaside to Capitola. It is the same technology, but Mr. Vind insists that his company can use it to get information about the aquifer areas that are beneath the seawater interface. Director Bruce Daniels pointed out that Dr. Knight has said the technology does not work reliably for that situation.

click here to continue (link expands, click again to collapse)

~WRITE ONE LETTER. MAKE ONE CALL. MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE.

BUT DO SOMETHING.

Cheers, Becky Steinbruner (Becky Steinbruner is a 30+ year resident of Aptos. She has fought for water, fire, emergency preparedness, and for road repair. She ran for Second District County Supervisor in 2016 on a shoestring and got nearly 20% of the votes).

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Sunday, March 12, 2017 #71 / Article II

“WE THE PEOPLE”

The Constitution of the United States is organized into seven different “Articles.” The first three Articles outline the duties of the three branches of government that the Consitution establishes:

Article I – Legislative
Article II – Executive
Article III – Judicial

This is pretty basic, and most of us understand the concept pretty well. Each branch of the government has its own assignment, or assignments, and to the degree that the government is going to be able to act at all, the three branches have to “agree,” or at least not “disagree.” The fact that each branch can (and is supposed to) act as a “check and balance” on the other branches is one of the ways we make sure that our democratic government doesn’t turn into despotism. 

Speaking about despotism, I sense some concern about the potentially despotic tendencies of our current president. Some are calling him “erratic” (raise your hand if you agree), but despotic or erratic tendencies shouldn’t cause any terminal hysteria among the public, if our governmental system is, in fact, operating as it’s supposed to. To have any chance of enduring over time, a governmental system must be robust enough to survive an “erratic” period, once in awhile.

click here to continue (link expands, click again to collapse)

~Gary is a former Santa Cruz County Supervisor (20 years) and an attorney for indivuduals and community groups on land use and environmental issues. The opinions expressed are Mr. Patton’s. You can read his blog at www.gapatton.net

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CLASSICAL DeCINZO. DeCinzo depicts Danged UCSC students facing reality…or Santa Cruz!!! Scroll below just a bit…

EAGAN’S DEEP COVER. See Tim Eagan’s “The President Who Cried Wolf” down a few pages. As always, at TimEagan.com you will find his most recent  Deep Cover, the latest installment from the archives of Subconscious Comics, and the ever entertaining Eaganblog.

LISA JENSEN LINKS. Lisa writes: “Childhood is not for sissies. But marginalized kids on the fringes of the social norm get their story told with humor an compassion in the charming animated featutre, My Life As a Zucchini, this week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (http://ljo-express.blogspot.com).” Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.

MUNCHING WITH MOZART. Every third Thursday Carol Panofsky presents… “MUNCHING WITH MOZART & FRIENDS” it’s this Thursday, March 16th, 12:10 – 12:50 at the Santa Cruz Public Library Downtown Branch – in the upstairs Meeting Room. It’ll feature Mozart and Chopin played by Carol Panofsky and Ben Dorfan, solo pianists. Carol will be playing Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)  Sonata in A Major, K. 331 and Ben will play Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849) Ballade in G Minor, op. 23. Get there early, the good- but few seats fill fast.

JEWEL THEATRE’S “The Dance of Death” a play by August Strindberg plays March 16-April 9 at the Colligan Theatre over in the Tannery Arts Center. Wikipedia says it has black humor. It’s about a soured marriage and reviews have almost always said it has overtones of George and Martha in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”. Tickets and more information here.

PATRICE VECCHIONE’S ONE—WOMAN SHOW. Author, artist, teacher, poet and performer Patrice Vecchione has created and will perform her newest one –woman show “Words Dressed & Undressed:Women, Aging & Identity” Friday March 17 and Saturday March 18 at the Center Stage Theatre 1001 Center Street. With humor, fashion and flair she’s put together a performance that reveals much of her most surprising personal history. Get tickets at Brown Paper Tickets online.

LAND OF MINE. Denmark’s entry for best foreign film 2017. Subtitled and deeply magnificient. Pefrectly acted, 100% engrossing, and for me it was a deep as any Greek tragedy. It’s 1945, the Germans lost the war and Denmark has forced 1000’s of young Deutsche POW’s to defuse and de-activate the millions of land mines that they buried along the miles of Denmark’s beaches. Human, realistic, painful, If you like films that make you think AND re-consider what you hold deeply, go see this one… as quick as possible.

KONG:SKULL ISLAND. Kong is back and after his appearance about 45 minutes into the film I figured why Kong is always mad. Unlike all gorillas, Kong has hair all over his butt and he has no penis! He does have his usual minute or two with a beautiful blonde…that’s Brie Larson (playing Faye Wray). Samuel. L. Jackson is a very bad guy, Tom Hiddleston is the big hero John Goodman gets killed before you expect it and John C. Reilly saves the movie from being just another numb & dumb box office smash. It beat Logan at the ticket office so that proves it. Truthfully though, it isn’t all bad IF you like monster gorilla movies.

LOGAN. Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart lower themselves considerably by playing the lead roles in this last of the Wolverine series. I’ve tried hard and failed to stop thinking that this is exactly the kind of film I’ll bet that Donald Trump likes. Even though the Wolverine (Jackman) is a comic book character and the special effects are just about 90% of the picture, the cruelty, killing, blood, evil, are all so typical of today’s biggest boxoffice hits, it’s too over the top for me. No plot, no emotions, no humanity…just more blood and more killing. Even the ending when Wolverine is in a stone covered grave I kept worrying and watching to see if some of the stones didn’t start shaking, meaning we’ll be tortured by an even worse Wolverine # 10. Yes Jackman has played the part nine times!!! Go if you like Donald Trump type movies.

MOONLIGHT. Best Oscar film 2017!!! For starters, Moonlight has a 98 % on Rotten Tomatoes, so it’s not just me who really not only enjoyed this tale of drugs, gangs, and love, but people who like deep, serious films loved it too. Set in Miami, this sharp, delicate, brilliant story of a Black man’s life is told in three parts. It’s best not to read too much about the plot and just watch with wonder as it unfolds. You’ve never seen a film like this one. Yes, It’s back again…many nominations and winning an Oscar did it!!

I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO. James Baldwin began writing a book in 1979 and this documentary uses the 30 pages his finished as continutity between the 6 chapters in the film. The links are stories of Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and Medgar Evans. It’s Baldwin working for unity and equality and we all need to see this film. It’s a lesson in humanity, and probably no Republicans or any of the 22, 438 Santa Cruz Trump voters will see this important film. It’s narrated by Samuel L. Jackson and got a 98 % on Rotten Tomatoes. Please see it!!!

A UNITED KINGDOM. “Based on a ture story” has almost become a law for movies lately…but this one really is. And It’s an excellent film. There’s a bunch of Black & White themed films out there now and that’s a good thing. This “historical” film about the King of Botswana land falling in love with and marrying a white Brit. woman is still deeper and more meaningful than most of the rest. (“Loving”, etc.) Recent award winner David Oyelowo and the brilliant Rosamund Pike star of Gone Girl (one of my favorite actors) grab hold of every scene and make you believe it. More than that you (we) become completely involved with the story. Somehow you’ll begin to wonder just how far you’d go in this “mixed marriage” thing. Rotten Tomatoes gives it an 85%.

GET OUT. Rotten Tomatoes gives this one an amazing 99%. Plus, it’s a huge box office hit !!! That’s surprising to everybody because it’s a low budget semi horror-comedy, black and white theme film. Probably released in February because that’s when they release films that aren’t expected o make much money. Catherine Keener is about the only actor whose name any of us might know. It’s a white girl brings home a black boyfriend topic. Only it goes into zones and situations that will amaze and get you laughing!! Wild, inventive, new, fine acting, twisted…you’ll love it.

LION. A true story of a little 5 year old boy getting lost in India. At last we get to see Dev Patel portray somebody serious and he does an excellent job. It’s a very cornball plot that you can guess every turn and twist, but still just because it’s India you do stay tuned in all the way through. Rooney Mara is his girlfriend for part of the plot and Nicole Kidman is the Australian wife who adopts him. It’s 100% feelgood and there are much better films out and around now, but it does have a certain charm.

HIDDEN FIGURES. A syrupy, Hollywoody much- altered story of three Black American women who did spectacular mathematical and technical work at NASA while fighting against a lot of racial and female prejudice. All to launch John Glenn into orbit. It’s both a cute and painful story at the same time. It’s a contender and still lacks something that could have made it a classic. It almost outdrew Star Wars on opening weekend!

LA LA LAND. It all depends on how much you remember the glorious and very bright and brilliant days of the Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Betty Grable, even Barbara Striesand, Judy Garland, and especially Ginger Rogers musicals. La La Land works very hard to convince us that the world hasn’t changed since those days and tries earnestly to recreate the innocence, and obvious genius of those performers. Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone make La La Land fun and happy to a degree, but it’s not the same. The music and songs aren’t anywhere near as good and the photography of today’s LA doesn’t add much either, besides that Stone and Gosling are not professional dancers or singers like all of above. It’s like having Eddie Redmayne play Tarzan.   

JOHN WICK Chapter 2. Keanu Reeves is back as the star of this sequel. That should be warning enough. One of the most splatteringly bloodiest films I’ve seen in years. Seems like all American made big studio films are violent nowadays, but this one is more than that. They justify the plot by adding sworn Mafia type family oaths , scenes in Rome, and just blood and more blood and as I said, most of it gets splattered on walls… a lot. However. I’m more than willing to entertain the possibility that it’s a generational thing. Most of my younger friends love it…and Rotten Tomatoes gives it 90%!! It’s in “THE SAME VEIN” as Logan and Jack Reacher movies.

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UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE. Each and every Tuesday from 7:00-8:00 p.m. I host Universal Grapevine on KZSC 88.1 fm. or on your computer, (live only or archived for two weeks… (See next paragraph) and go to WWW.KZSC.ORG. Patrice Vecchione returns March 14 to talk about her one-woman show “Dressed and Undressed” happening March 17 & 18, then Bruce Van Allen from the Affordable Housing Now and S.C. Tenant’s Organizing Committee will talk about short term vacation rentals.  Espressivo conductor and artistic director Michel Singher talks about their March 30 concert on March 21 followed by Chip from The Downtown Association of Santa Cruz. Roy Malan discusses the Hidden Valley String Orchestra concert happening April 9. John Aird follows with an overview of UCSC growth, water, and our tourist driven wharf plans. On April 4 Linda Burman-Hall returns to talk about The Santa Cruz Baroque Festival’s spring concerts. After Linda, Ben Leeds Carson details the April In Santa Cruz concerts. Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening. Email me always and only at bratton@cruzio.com

I absolutely love bellydancing, and this girl is great! Check her out.

NEW UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVE FEATURE. Stuff changes at KZSC a lot. If you missed either of the last two weeks of Universal Grapevine broadcasts go herehttp://www.radiofreeamerica.com/dj/bruce-bratton You have to listen to about 4 minutes of that week’s KPFA news first, then Grapevine happens.

UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVES. In case you missed some of the great people I’ve interviewed in the last 9 years here’s a chronological list of some past broadcasts.  Such a wide range of folks such as Nikki Silva, Michael Warren, Tom Noddy, UCSC Chancellor George Blumenthal, Anita Monga, Mark Wainer, Judy Johnson, Wendy Mayer-Lochtefeld, Rachel Goodman, George Newell, Tubten Pende, Gina Marie Hayes, Rebecca Ronay-Hazleton, Miriam Ellis, Deb Mc Arthur, The Great Morgani on Street performing, and Paul Whitworth on Krapps Last Tape. Jodi McGraw on Sandhills, Bruce Daniels on area water problems. Mike Pappas on the Olive Connection, Sandy Lydon on County History. Paul Johnston on political organizing, Rick Longinotti on De-Sal. Dan Haifley on Monterey Bay Sanctuary, Dan Harder on Santa Cruz City Museum. Sara Wilbourne on Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre. Brian Spencer on SEE Theatre Co. Paula Kenyon and Karen Massaro on MAH and Big Creek Pottery. Carolyn Burke on Edith Piaf. Peggy Dolgenos on Cruzio. Julie James on Jewel Theatre Company. Then there’s Pat Matejcek on environment, Nancy Abrams and Joel Primack on the Universe plus Nina Simon from MAH, Rob Slawinski, Gary Bascou, Judge Paul Burdick, John Brown Childs, Ellen Kimmel, Don Williams, Kinan Valdez, Ellen Murtha, John Leopold, Karen Kefauver, Chip Lord, Judy Bouley, Rob Sean Wilson, Ann Simonton, Lori Rivera, Sayaka Yabuki, Chris Kinney, Celia and Peter Scott, Chris Krohn, David Swanger, Chelsea Juarez…and that’s just since January 2011.

QUOTES. “WALLS”

“Men build too many walls and not enough bridges.” Joseph Fort Newton

“If there is a hard, high wall and an egg that breaks against it, no matter how right the wall or how wrong the egg, I will stand on the side of the egg. Why? Because each of us is an egg, a unique soul enclosed in a fragile egg. Each of us is confronting a high wall. The high wall is the system which forces us to do the things we would not ordinarily see fit to do as individuals . . . We are all human beings, individuals, fragile eggs. We have no hope against the wall: it’s too high, too dark, too cold. To fight the wall, we must join our souls together for warmth, strength. We must not let the system control us — create who we are. It is we who created the system. (Jerusalem Prize acceptance speech, JERUSALEM POST, Feb. 15, 2009)” Haruki Murakami

“Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance”. Robert Kennedy

“There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect”. Ronald Reagan

COLUMN COMMUNICATIONS. Subscriptions: Click and enter the box in the upper right hand corner of each Column. You’ll get a weekly email notice the instant the column goes online. (Anywhere from Monday afternoon through Thursday or sometimes as late as Friday!) Always free and confidential. Even I don’t know who subscribes!!

Snail Mail: Bratton Online
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Direct email: Bratton@Cruzio.com
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BEST OF VINTAGE STEVEN DeCINZO.

Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.

March 7 – 13, 2017

PRE DEPOT PARK 1905. The Santa Cruz Union Station was built in 1892  for the South Pacific Coast Rail Road. Note the Santa Cruz electric open car on the far right. Now there’s mostly an artificial turf  soccer field taking up all that space.

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection.

Additional information always welcome: email bratton@cruzio.com

DATELINE March 6, 2017

K’LONGPUT ARTIST!!
VIETNAMESE “ZITHER

WHARF TO WHARF COMPARISON. The editorial in Sunday”s Santa cruz Sentinel (03/05) had a great bit of statistics that hopefully convince locals of the need to preserve our Municipal Wharf instead of developing it into a non descript shopping mall. To quote the Sentinel…

“For Monterey, a recent Herald report found that city’s Fisherman’s Wharf was the second most visited attraction in the area in 2016 (Cannery Row was number 1 and the Aquarium was number 3.)”. It clearly shows that visitors go first to the historic and preserved sites (Cannery Row) then second they go to the more modernized Monterey Wharf. Lastly they go to the Aquarium. Adult admision to the Aquarium is now $49.95!!!

22, 438 TRUMP SUPPORTERS IN SANTA CRUZ COUNTY. One way or the other I’m going to repeat this voting statistic often. We must remember that even in this heavenly liberal bubble we somehow keep thinking we live in..that the reality is that 22,438 neighbors voted for Trump! (lest we forget)

THE COTONI-COAST NATIONAL MONUMENT NEWS. Everyone one who cares about the environment, climate change, tourism, and politics waited with bated breath to see if President Obama would declare this space a national minument just before leaving office….and he did it.What’s been happening since? How do the neighbors who live near the “monument” feel about it? What’s the future hold for the development? The Latest issue of The Rural Bonny Doon Association newspaper The Highlander has thai article in it…it’s four or more pages long and if you want to understand more about what monument status means…go for it.

Cotoni-Coast Dairies National Monument:

LOTS OF QUESTIONS, FEW ANSWERS.

As most of us expected, on Jan. 12 then- President Obama, under the auspices of the National Antiquities Act, proclaimed Coast Dairies a national monument, and added to it the name of the Cotoni (pronounced Cha-tone-ee) band of Amah Matsun people who used to inhabit the area.

Along with other local groups like Friends of the North Coast and the Davenport/North Coast Association, the RBDA Board feared the designation would attract many more visitors to the 5,800 acre property that stretches from Highway One up into Bonny Doon, surrounds Bonny Doon Road, and reaches up the coast into Swanton, than if it were simply maintained as a protected area managed by the federal Bureau of Land Management, a division of the Interior Dept.

The problem is that national monument designation gears up a global barrage of publicity, while guaranteeing only a pittance of additional funding for management and stewardship.

Cotoni-Coast Dairies faces the same dilemma as most other protected lands. They are managed for two conflicting purposes: public recreation, and environmental and habitat preservation. But Cotoni-Coast Dairies is different from most other large protected lands: it is just two hours or less away from a population of 8 million people, many of whom are enthusiastic hikers and bikers. It isn’t hard to foresee that when a visitor center and trails are established, 500,000 or more people a year may be enjoying the property. [State Parks estimates that that many visitors—obviously, many of them locals who use it frequently—tramp or ride about on Wilder Ranch State Park each year. We think that estimate is high.] Since being named a monument, Ft. Ord’s visitation has zoomed to over 400,000.

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KZSC’S NEW NEWS. The Monterey Bay Area News coverage scene has changed. UCSC students at KZSC have been creating and broadcasting weekly news every Thursday morning from 8:00-8:10 am. They work hard and wisely on gathering and checking sources…and the enthusiasm is unbeatable. Tune in Thursdays 8 am to KZSC 88.1 fm or online at KZSC.org.

More Views from Australia

Public transportation in and around Sydney is a delight. This is no indictment of Santa Cruz, whose small town size, relative isolation and funding sources make public transportation a challenge. In Australia, public transportation, similar to education, is state, not locally funded. This ensures that trains serve all towns and counties and school districts receive essentially the same state funds, whether they are affluent or working class. Public transportation is widely used and user friendly. All ages and social classes travel by bus and train, both of which are spotless, comfortable and clearly marked. If you are over 60, retired and a resident, your senior card allows you to travel up to distances of 100 miles in all directions for a maximum of $2.50 and all school buses are free.

I travelled by train from Central Station in Sydney to the Blue Mountains at Katoomba to visit my sister. These are not bullet trains but fast enough. The trip of two hours passed by the many small, historic train stations, each immaculately maintained and punctuated with lovingly tended islands of landscaping. Apparently the stations vie with each other to present the best landscaping. As a non-resident, my fare was $6 each way.   

Despite the wide availability of excellent public transportation and gas at over $6 a gallon, car traffic is a nightmare in and around Sydney. My hunch is that this will hold true for the future of Santa Cruz, irrespective of the push for non-car forms of transportation. The assumption on the part of Santa Cruz city planners, city council and transportation activists that providing bike lanes, sidewalks, the rail trail and eradicating on street parking as well as reduced required parking for new dense developments will result in people getting out of and getting rid of their cars is in my view a pipe dream or a sop to development interests.

One last reflection: on a 10K hike along the headlands of the many northern Sydney beaches from Collaroy to Manly, I was struck by the huge swaths of open public land punctuated by perhaps a small children’s playground. One or two people even on a Sunday. Space to throw a ball or spread out a blanket and have a picnic. This within a metropolitan area of 5 million people. I could hear echos of Santa Cruz park planners intoning that the space is “under-utilized” and should be “activated.” I was also struck by the respect for pedestrians.  On reaching our destination and heading for the bus to catch home I observed the clear signs alerting bike riders to dismount and walk in pedestrian crossings and signs that prohibited bikes on frequently used promenades. The signs were respected.

Gillian Greensite is a long time local activist, a member of Save Our Big Trees and the Santa Cruz chapter of IDA, International Dark Sky Association  http://darksky.org    Plus she’s an avid ocean swimmer, hiker and lover of all things wild).

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March 5,2015

Oh, What a Night, late February Back in ’17!

The bomb blast you may have felt last week came during the ninth hour (10:20pm) of the Santa Cruz City Council meeting of February 24th. 2017 During a lengthy discussion about whether Santa Cruz should have both a sanctuary city resolution and an ordinance provision, several community members asserted at the public podium that Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) has a desk inside the Santa Cruz Police Department. When the conversation came back to the council, Vice-mayor David Terazzas said people should be careful in making accusations about the police. Councilmember Sandy Brown chimed in that she had an email from Santa Cruz County Supervisor  John Leopold corroborating the existence of HSI’s physical presence within one of our city’s public safety facilities. With that, Police Chief Kevin Vogel spoke up. Yes, in fact “an agent (from HSI-ICE) has had a desk at SCPD” since 2009, he said. Vogel followed up that comment with, “my intention is to serve the DHS (Department of Homeland Security, HSI’s parent organization) agent with an eviction.”

Move him out of the facility in other words?

It is a question that still looms over an otherwise productive and sensitive discussion—over 250 showed up—that placed the protecting of our local immigrant community at the top of the city council’s evening agenda. It is important to state here that both the resolution and a toothier ordinance fashioned on the city of Santa Ana’s law were both passed by the council. (see the New York Times editorial on the Santa Ana ordinance here)       

When asked if our ordinance is as strong as it could be, city attorney Tony Condotti said, “I don’t’ think this is the strongest policy statement from among the ones I’ve seen…it’s a measured policy statement in my view.”

Other questions that remain:

How could SCPD not know earlier about the entire scope of the DHS-HSI-ICE operation that was carried out in the early morning hours of February 13th? Why has Department Of Homeland Security (DHS) not yet provided SCPD with a list of immigrants who were detained that day? And that’s after being prodded several times by our Deputy-chief of Police, Dan Flippo? “It is upsetting that HSI has not been forthcoming,” Flippo stated. And of course, a question that does not go away: How is it that Santa Cruz County Sherriff, Jim Hart opted NOT to provide county resources to DHS after his officers attended an initial pre-planning meeting for this operation?

What also needs to be pointed out here is that it is rare, and somewhat heartening, to see a local police chief, and deputy chief, so sincerely take professional responsibility for a federal operation gone wrong. Vogel and Flippo, while acting as a Santa Cruz David, stridently and forcefully went after Goliath, the Department of Homeland Security. The Washington Post reported on February 23rd   that Chief Vogel said, “We cannot cooperate with a law enforcement agency we cannot trust.”

SCPD’s verbal pushback, and the police hierarchy’s stated concern in carrying out our city’s sanctuary resolution and ordinance, remain as a positive outcome to an otherwise sordid affair. There is much more to this story and I hope our local media will be reporting it. I urge readers of BrattonOnline to check out UCSC’s City on a Hill last week. Their coverage is exemplary and the newspaper’s cover picture incorporates Spanish and English over a picture taken inside the city council chambers during the sanctuary discussion. The picture deserves a journalism award!

Snapshots and Take-Aways

Wells Fargo bank holds over $20 million of Santa Cruz City money at any given time. It handles our city’s payroll. Wells is helping finance the “Dakota Access Pipeline” (DAPL). Cities from Seattle to Santa Monica are divesting from Wells Fargo. Should Santa Cruz also pull out? How difficult would it be for us to divest? Are there other banking services available, local ones to be specific? Let the city council know how you feel: citycouncil@cityofsantacruz.com mailto:citycouncil@cityofsantacruz.com

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~Bernie Quote of the Week:
“I am going to do my best to try to create a country in which children are not living in poverty, in which kids can go to college, which old people have healthcare. Will I succeed? I can’t guarantee you that, but I can tell you that from a human point of view it is better to show up than give up.”

(Chris Krohn is a father, writer, activist, former Santa Cruz City Councilmember (1998-2002) and Mayor (2001-2002). He’s been running the Environmental Studies Internship program at UC Santa Cruz for the past 12 years. He was elected last November to another 4-year term on the Santa Cruz City Council).

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WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT TO BE INFORMED ABOUT…LOCAL GOVERNMENT PROCEEDINGS?
Last week seemed to be full of various County government meetings.  Citizens who are concerned about what is going on and want to become educated have to work very hard to get information.  While the standard answer from government staff is “you can look that up on our website”, I have found that I learn much more by attending meetings and hear what gets said but not necessarily reported in minutes.  

I appreciate that Community Television records and broadcasts the County Board of Supervisor meetings and many others, but many Commission (e.g., Water Advisory, Housing Advisory, Historic Resources Advisory) meetings are not recorded.  It would be good for the public if they were.  Ask your local elected officials to do so, in the name of government transparency.

Here is the link to the Community TV schedule of current government broadcasts.

Take advantage of this good resource…maybe someday the County Board of Supervisors and the Regional Transportation Commission will accommodate the working class and students who cannot currently attend their 9am weekday meetings.

A LONG DAY ON THE FIFTH FLOOR AT 701 OCEAN STREET
The February 28 County Board of Supervisor meeting was a long one.  Why were two critical matters placed on the agenda for the same day?  The Cannabis Cultivation and Licensing Environmental Impact Report Noticing brought a room full of people with many good questions and ideas.  Cannabis Enforcement Officer Mr. Dan Peterson also presented a great deal of information.

Unfortunately, it seems the District 2 ban on outdoor growing on less than 5 acre parcels is still on the books….all because County Administrative Officer Ms. Susan Mauriello doesn’t like the smell in her backyard.  Doesn’t that place residents in District 2 at an unfair economic disadvantage by forcing them to pay higher electric bills for lighting and ventillation to grow their medicine?  I think so, not to mention the fire hazard from over-loaded electrical circuits.  My neighborhood had to evacuate in the middle of the night three years ago due to a fire for that very reason.  

Maybe Ms. Mariello will have that same pleasure and see the errors of her ways…..

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~WRITE ONE LETTER.  MAKE ONE CALL.  MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE.

Cheers, Becky Steinbruner  (Becky Steinbruner is a 30+ year resident of Aptos. She has fought for water, fire, emergency preparedness, and for road repair. She ran for Second District County Supervisor in 2016 on a shoestring and got nearly 20% of the votes).

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2/28/17 #59 / Time And Space

Albert Einstein is quoted as saying that time is an illusion. Apparently, though, Einstein did believe in a more conventional understanding of “space.” That is the way I construe his reluctance to accept what he called “spooky action at a distance.” This phenomenon, predicted by quantum physics, and largely proven, is defined by the fact that two particles, widely separated in space, can be shown to affect each other, instantaneously, despite the distance separating them, and despite the limits on communication supposedly imposed by the speed of light. 

If I am correctly understanding the implications of that “spooky action at a distance” thing, it would seem largely to negate our common sense understanding of what “space” must be, since geographic separation (the “space” between us) would not interrupt an immediate exchange of information between two widely-separated particles, or “things.”

According to Scientific American, recent experiments seem to be eliminating any reason to think that the “spooky action at a distance” phenomenon is not an accurate description of how physical reality is actually organized. Doesn’t this mean that “space,” too, is an “illusion,” just as Einstein said that “time” is? As I said a week or so ago, I am a “sucker for physics,” with that confession going along with an acknowledgment that I don’t understand it. What I draw from all these things that I don’t understand, though, is that what we think of as “reality,” based in material existence, may not be our actual “reality” at all. 

My friend Mr. Dylan puts it this way: “Something is happening here, but [we] don’t know what it is.”  We are all playing the role of a materialist “Mr. Jones,” as we find out more about the World of Nature. What we are finding out is that we actually live in a world that is a something quite different from what we have assumed to be the case”.

Gary is a former Santa Cruz County Supervisor (20 years) and an attorney for indivuduals and community groups on land use and environmental issues. The opinions expressed are Mr. Patton’s. You can read his blog at www.gapatton.net

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CLASSICAL DeCINZO. Check out DeCinzo’s idea of our housing problem a page or two below.

EAGAN’S DEEP COVER. See Eagan’s ” What Smell “down a few pages. As always, at TimEagan.com you will find his most recent  Deep Cover, the latest installment from the archives of Subconscious Comics, and the ever entertaining Eaganblog.

RUSSIAN SYNCHCHRONIZED SKATING. I’m not a big ice skating fan but this teamwork is beautiful.

JEWEL THEATRE’S “The Dance of Death” a play by August Strindberg plays March 16-April 9 at the Colligan Theatre over in the Tannery Arts Center. Wikipedia says it has black humor. It’s about a soured marriage and reviews have almost always said it has overtones of George and Martha in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”. Tickets and more information here!

SANTA CRUZ CHAMBER PLAYERS. “The Greatest Music You’ve Never Heard” is the title of their next concert happening Saturday March 11th at 7:30 pm; and Sunday March 12th at 3:00 pm. That means Rarely Performed Chamber Works by Jaun Crisóstomo Arriaga, Aaron Copland, William Grant Still, and others. The concert will be performed by Ivan Rosenblum, Concert director and piano; James Pytko, clarinet; Shannon Delaney and Rachel Magnus Hartman, violins; Arlyn Knapic, viola; Aude Castagna, cello. Their press release says, “Rarely performed?”  We know what you’re thinking: surely there are good reasons for that!  Our program judiciously avoids those unworthies in favor of first-rate, seldom-performed pieces that deserve wider exposure.  We explore why even excellent music is sometimes under- programmed and under-appreciated. For example, Arriaga, the “Spanish Mozart,” who died at age 20, didn’t have time to amass enough compositions to insure a lasting reputation. Even though Aaron Copland is well-known, his Sextet is not, because it’s written in a less popular style than Appalachian Spring. Some composers, for sociological or historical reasons, never received their full due.  Such was the fate of Afro-American composer William Grant Still, whose lively dance Dance Suite will be performed. By exploring the twists and turns of “rarely performed” repertoire, we discovered the intriguing Zemlinsky Trio and opera composer Gian Carlo Menotti’s instrumental Trio. With its 18th-20th century varied repertoire and diverse instrumentation, this concert is not to be missed.  You might not get another opportunity to hear these pieces for quite some time! Once again…it’s Saturday March 11th at 7:30 pm; Sunday March 12th at 3:00 pm at Christ Lutheran Church in Aptos off Freedom Blvd. near the old run down CHP headquarters.  

LISA JENSEN LINKS. Lisa writes: “Find out if Hugh Jackman’s last Wolverine movie  LOGAN is a worthy send-off, and join the countdown to publication day for my next book,    this week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (http://ljo-express.blogspot.com). Also, fasten your seatbelts for the Return of the Oscar Barbies — 2017 edition!”  Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.

LOGAN. Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart lower themselves considerably by playing the lead roles in this last of the Wolverine series. I’ve tried hard and failed to stop thinking that this is exactly the kind of film I’ll bet that Donald Trump likes. Even though the Wolverine (Jackman) is a comic book character and the special effects are just about 90% of the picture, the cruelty, killing, blood, evil, are all so typical of today’s biggest boxoffice hits, it’s too over the top for me. No plot, no emotions, no humanity…just more blood and more killing. Even the ending when Wolverine is in a stone covered grave I kept worrying  and watching to see if some of the stones didn’t start shaking, meaning we’ll be tortured by an even worse Wolverine # 10. Yes Jackman has played the part nine times!!!  Go if you like Donald Trump type movies.

MANCHESTER BY THE SEA. Casey Affleck single handidly sustains this deep, emotional film. It’s on the way to several awards and should win them all. It’s an intelligent, beautifically acted in depth portrait of people going through trauma and relationships. Along with Affleck there’s Michelle Williams, Gretchen Mol, even Mathew Broderick in a bit part and especially the 16 year old Lucas Hedges. It’s a cold and unrelenting film that demands your attention.

THE SALESMAN. This great film won the OSCAR for best Foreign language film. It’s from Iran …and it’s a winner anyway. Subtle, subtitled, human, complex…it’s a story about a young couple who are acting in a staged version of Death Of A Salesman.  A secret tragedy  happens and the plot handles the truth about it very slowly and very beautifully. You could call it searing, emotionally draining, and a lot more. Go see it quickly.

MOONLIGHT. Best Oscar film 2017!!! For starters, Moonlight  has a 98 % on Rotten Tomatoes, so it’s not just me who really not only enjoyed this tale of drugs, gangs, and love, but people who like deep, serious films loved it too. Set in Miami, this sharp, delicate, brilliant story of a Black man’s life is told in three parts. It’s best not to read too much about the plot and just watch with wonder as it unfolds. You’ve never seen a film like this one. Yes, It’s back again…many nominations and Sunday’s winning an Oscar did it!!

I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO. James Baldwin began writing a book in 1979 and this documentary uses the 30 pages his finished as continutity between the 6 chapters in the film. The links are stories of Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and Medgar Evans. It’s Baldwin working for unity and equality and we all need to see this film. It’s a lesson in humanity, and probably no Republicans or any of the 22, 438 Santa Cruz Trump voters will see this important film. It’s narrated by Samuel L. Jackson and got a 98 % on Rotten Tomatoes. Please see it!!!

A UNITED KINGDOM. “Based on a ture story” has almost become a law for movies lately…but this one really is. And It’s an excellent film. There’s a bunch of Black & White themed films out there now and that’s a good thing. This “historical” film about the King of Botswana land falling in love with and marrying a white Brit. woman is still deeper and more meaningful than most of the rest. (“Loving”, etc.) Recent award winner David Oyelowo and the brilliant Rosamund Pike star of Gone Girl (one of my favorite actors) grab hold of every scene and make you believe it. More than that you (we) become completely involved with the story. Somehow you’ll begin to wonder just how far you’d go in this “mixed marriage” thing. Rotten Tomatoes gives it an 85%.

GET OUT. Rotten Tomatoes gives this one an amazing 99%. Plus, it’s a huge box office hit !!! That’s surprising to everybody because it’s a low budget semi horror-comedy, black and white theme film. Probably released in February because that’s when they release films that aren’t expected o make much money. Catherine Keener is about the only actor whose name any of us might know. It’s a white girl brings home a black boyfriend topic. Only it goes into zones and situations that will amaze and get you laughing!! Wild, inventive, new, fine acting, twisted…you’ll love it.

LION. A true story of a little 5 year old boy getting lost in India. At last we get to see Dev Patel portray somebody serious and he does an excellent job.  It’s a very cornball plot that you can guess every turn and twist, but still just because it’s India you do stay tuned in all the way through. Rooney Mara is his girlfriend for part of the plot and Nicole Kidman is the Australian wife who adopts him. It’s 100% feelgood and there are much better films out and around now, but it does have a certain charm.

HIDDEN FIGURES. A syrupy, Hollywoody much- altered story of three Black American women who did spectacular mathematical and technical work at NASA while fighting against a lot of racial and female prejudice. All to launch John Glenn into orbit. It’s both a cute and painful story at the same time. It’s a contender and still lacks something that could have made it a classic. It almost outdrew Star Wars on opening weekend!

LA LA LAND. It all depends on how much you remember the glorious and very bright and brilliant days of the Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Betty Grable, even Barbara Striesand, Judy Garland, and especially Ginger Rogers musicals. La La Land works very hard to convince us that the world hasn’t changed since those days and tries earnestly to recreate the innocence, and obvious genius of those performers. Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone make La La Land fun and happy to a degree, but it’s not the same. The music and songs aren’t anywhere near as good and the photography of today’s LA doesn’t add much either, besides that Stone and Gosling are not professional dancers or singers like all of above.  It’s like having Eddie Redmayne play Tarzan.

SPLIT.  M. Night Shyamalan makes some pretty weird and frequently awful movies. But Split has James McAvoy playing a very disturbed guy with 23 distinct and split personalities (and most of them are very crazy). He’s lured and locked up 3 teen aged girls and it’s scary and more or less predictable after that, but you’ll stay glued to the screen and your seat…go for it …if you like scary stuff. Not anywhere near as a good as Hitchcock, but he tries. (Shyamalan even makes a secret cameo appearance like Hitch always did).

OSCAR SHORTS. LIVE ACTION. There s five of them. 100 % on R. Tomatoes.They range from really, really soapy cornball love story to a really, really, soapy, cornball car attendents secret  dancing between parking cars. One is very heavy and serious about a guy being questioned about his loyalty, and you’ll question yours too after seeing it. All in all nit my favorite year for Live action shorts. All foreign, all subtitled.

OSCAR SHORTS, ANIMATION. There’s five of these animated shorts too. They range from a sickingly slick, cutesy Pixar baby sandpiper confection to an adults only “Pear Cider and Cigarettes” 35 minute graphic saga that is brilliant. Don’t take the kids to any of these shorts they simply aren’t worth it. But see Pear Cider if you can.  

THE GREAT WALL. Matt Damon heads this almost all Chinese cast in a huge special effects battle against thousands of 20 foot man killing, organized, queen – led Iguanas during the 12 century. Damon’s accent goes from Ireland to Massachusetts (his birthplace). Damon can and has done some fine acting in the past but he’s lost in this computer generated, darkly filmed big, big box office success (in China). 36 on Rotten Tomatoes.  

JOHN WICK Chapter 2. Keanu Reeves is back as the star of this sequel. That should be warning enough. One of the most splatteringly bloodiest films I’ve seen in years. Seems like all American made big studio films are violent nowadays, but this one is more than that. They justify the plot by adding sworn Mafia type family oaths , scenes in Rome,  and just blood and more blood and as I said, most of it gets splattered on walls… a lot. However. I’m more than willing to entertain the possibility that it’s a generational thing. Most of my younger friends love it…and Rotten Tomatoes gives it 90%!! It’s in “THE SAME VEIN” as Logan and Jack Reacher movies.

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UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE. Each and every Tuesday from 7:00-8:00 p.m. I host Universal Grapevine on KZSC 88.1 fm. or on your computer, (live only or archived for two weeks… (See next paragraph) and go to WWW.KZSC.ORG. On March 7 Newton and Helen Harrison talk about their book, “The Time of The Force Majeure”. Tony Russomano follows talking about the structure of the Democratic Party in California. Patrice Vecchione returns March 14 to talk about her one-woman show “Dressed and Undressed” happening March 17 & 18, then somebody from the Sanctuary Santa Cruz group will give us new details.  Espressivo conductor and artistic director Michel Singher talks about their March 30 concert on March 21 followed by Chip from The Downtown Association of Santa Cruz. Roy Malan discusses the Hidden Valley String Orchestra concert happening April 9. John Aird follows with an overview of UCSC growth, water, and our tourist driven wharf plans. On April 4 Linda Burman-Hall returns to talk about The Santa Cruz Baroque Festival’s spring concerts.  Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening. Email me always and only at bratton@cruzio.com

There are no words, this is pure joy :)

NEW UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVE FEATURE. Stuff changes at KZSC a lot. If you missed either of the last two weeks of Universal Grapevine broadcasts go herehttp://www.radiofreeamerica.com/dj/bruce-bratton You have to listen to about 4 minutes of that week’s KPFA news first, then Grapevine happens.

UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVES. In case you missed some of the great people I’ve interviewed in the last 9 years here’s a chronological list of some past broadcasts.  Such a wide range of folks such as  Nikki Silva, Michael Warren, Tom Noddy, UCSC Chancellor George Blumenthal, Anita Monga, Mark Wainer, Judy Johnson, Wendy Mayer-Lochtefeld, Rachel Goodman, George Newell, Tubten Pende, Gina Marie Hayes, Rebecca Ronay-Hazleton, Miriam Ellis, Deb Mc Arthur, The Great Morgani on Street performing, and Paul Whitworth on Krapps Last Tape. Jodi McGraw on Sandhills, Bruce Daniels on area water problems. Mike Pappas on the Olive Connection, Sandy Lydon on County History. Paul Johnston on political organizing, Rick Longinotti on De-Sal. Dan Haifley on Monterey Bay Sanctuary, Dan Harder on Santa Cruz City Museum. Sara Wilbourne on Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre. Brian Spencer on SEE Theatre Co. Paula Kenyon and Karen Massaro on MAH and Big Creek Pottery. Carolyn Burke on Edith Piaf. Peggy Dolgenos on Cruzio. Julie James on Jewel Theatre Company. Then there’s Pat Matejcek on environment, Nancy Abrams and Joel Primack on the Universe plus Nina Simon from MAH, Rob Slawinski, Gary Bascou, Judge Paul Burdick, John Brown Childs, Ellen Kimmel, Don Williams, Kinan Valdez, Ellen Murtha, John Leopold, Karen Kefauver, Chip Lord, Judy Bouley, Rob Sean Wilson, Ann Simonton, Lori Rivera, Sayaka Yabuki, Chris Kinney, Celia and Peter Scott, Chris Krohn, David Swanger, Chelsea Juarez…and that’s just since January 2011.

QUOTES. “MARCH”

“It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade”, Charles Dickens

“Indoors or out, no one relaxes
In March, that month of wind and taxes,
The wind will presently disappear,
The taxes last us all the year”. ~Ogden Nash

“March brings breezes loud and shrill,
Stirs the dancing daffodil”. ~Sara Coleridge

“Don’t ever become a pessimist… a pessimist is correct oftener than an optimist, but an optimist has more fun, and neither can stop the march of events”.  ~Robert A. Heinlein

“By March, the worst of the winter would be over. The snow would thaw, the rivers begin to run and the world would wake into itself again. Not that year. Winter hung in there, like an invalid refusing to die. Day after grey day the ice stayed hard; the world remained unfriendly and cold.”    ~Neil Gaiman

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BEST OF VINTAGE STEVEN DeCINZO.

Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.