Blog Archives

PACIFIC AVENUE. December 1946 at 2:01 p.m. All those Christmas Decorations and that Chain Store in the lower right. I just now read that Optometrist Dr. Ray. G. Newcomer had his office right next to The Artistic Beauty Salon. That looks like Zoccoli’s was open way back then…in the same location…anybody know about that??

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection, click for bigger version.

Additional information always welcome: email

OCCUPY SANTA CRUZ COULD BE FAMOUS!! Every day we see, and the media seems too eager, to print how CITIES are resorting to violence by unleashing their cops to stop, harass, beat up, end & destroy OCCUPY sites. Our little seaside town talks a big talk about being progressive, kind, weird, intelligent and forward thinking. This is the time when our City Council can make real, genuine waves by creating a new and innovative way to work with and accept OCCUPY Santa Cruz. We could set new standards and methods of communication with OCCUPY. The world could look at us and respect, and even repeat the thoughtful, helpful way our city cooperates with OCCUPY. Our City Council has a great opportunity right now to make a difference, urge them to think ahead.

OCCUPY MONTEREY. Some well stated ideas from the other side of the bay.

BRUCE MCPHERSON FOR WHAT!!! SOME KIND OF JOKE??? After losing two state elections, after being Arnold Schwarzenegger’s appointee, after supporting Sam Blakeslee by trashing John Laird and becoming one of our local 1% Bank owners Can Bruce McPherson hope to get elected to anything in Santa Cruz…wow!!! After never voting for any pro-gay legislation in his career can he seriously believe we’ve forgotten his Republican past life? We need a contest…send in your best reason for NOT supporting Bruce McPherson for Supervisor, even if you live in Scotts Valley!!! Or even in his own neighborhood Pasatiempo!!! Yes, we’ll accept his Santa Cruz Sentinel editorials when he owned the paper…the ones that made you so angry.


LOL-LAFCOOUT LOUD.The Nov.Dec. issue of The Rural Bonny Doon Association newsletter (The Highlander) has a great article that spells out what’s going on with the UCSC planning to grow, the lawsuit from CWC and The City of Santa Cruz. It’s too long to re-print here but it says things like…”The City of Santa Cruz (City) and UCSC are taking some of the last steps in gaining permission to develop the north (or upper) campus. There are a couple of lawsuits pending (see the July/August Highlander) but currently at stake are the water rights needed for the new development”.

. It tells about the problems neighbors such as Bonny Doon will have, past deals between UCSC and the City, and more. It says..
• The inclusion of an unnecessary section of campus reserve land in the most northern part of the proposed SOI. Presumably this is to allow UCSC to “give up” something for compromise or it signals their intention to develop this area at a later date.
• A new fairly straight (aka, fast) major road through the development area linking the east and west campus. • A major access road linking the new development road to Empire Grade near Waldorf School. This will be a third entrance to UCSC and there is no reason to think that it won’t be heavily used when the West entrance gets backed up during busy times of day.

Regardless of the outcome of the Dec. 7 LAFCO hearing, the growth issue is far from resolved. CWC may seek redress from the court system if the LAFCO approval goes through and UCSC could simply proceed with the development as planned while ignoring its impact on the City if the application is denied.
It is important to show up in force at the meeting, partly to show UCSC the level of opposition is great and partly to show the City that they made a mistake. Take Action! There are a number of actions individuals and groups can take if you would like to oppose the expansion and water giveaway, ranging from simple to involved:

Come to the LAFCO hearing Dec. 7.

THING WALKS THE STREETS. This was not on Pacific Avenue!!!

Speak up at the LAFCO hearing. Read the staff report on Nov. 15 and address any relevant issues”. Read the article, and stay vigilant, both the City and UCSC are more “vigilant” than you can believe.

ARANA GULCH’S NEW ROADS, STEEL SPAN BRIDGES & PETITION. Kit Birskovich writes to tell us…”I’m writing to you about a place that is very dear to my heart: Arana Gulch. In December the City of Santa Cruz will be seeking approval of their Arana Gulch Master Plan from the Coastal Commission. Included in this plan is a wide paved road to serve as a short-cut for bicycles through the greenbelt with two steel span bridges on each end, one longer than a football field. Think bulldozers, pavement, and endangered and threatened species’ habitat destruction. The coastal terrace prairie of Arana Gulch is a fraction of the remaining 1% of California’s original unique coastal prairie ecosystem. The Arana Gulch greenbelt, saved from development by a vote of the people in 1979 and again in 1994, is home for many sensitive species, including the Santa Cruz Tarplant (Holocarpha macradenia). It is a rare natural place in an urban setting, with two existing accesses serving City and County residents, who enjoy and appreciate its uniqueness daily.

The City’s draft Master Plan EIR states that there will be “significant and unavoidable” impacts to the endangered Santa Cruz Tarplant “which cannot be fully mitigated” if the Broadway Brommer project within the Arana Gulch Master Plan is approved, and the US Fish & Wildlife Service and CA Dept. of Fish & Game agree with the City’s determination. This non-resource dependent, City Public Works component of the Arana Gulch Master Plan is inconsistent with the Coastal Act.

So I signed a petition to California Coastal Commission, which says: “We ask that Coastal Commissioners vote to approve the Arana Gulch Master Plan ONLY if the proposed paved City-County connector bicycle project (called Broadway Brommer) through ESHA and “critical habitat” of an endangered species is REMOVED from the AG Master Plan.”
Will you sign this petition? Click here. Thanks! Warm regards,- Kit Birskovich.

ELERICK’S INPUT. Paul’s back from “boot camp” (see below) and writes,
“County Planning Department messing around
with General Plan/Local Coastal Plan.
One of the most aggravating actions taken on lately by County Staff is to start whacking away at General Plans and Local Coastal Plans relative to provisions of the California Coastal Commission. Readers should take a few minutes to read Item 49 on the Board Of Supervisors (BOS) November 8th agenda. It contains recommendations submitted to the Board by County Planning Director Kathy M. Previsich.

There are some alarming staff proposals regarding land use issues in it. Almost every important paragraph recommends changing a very clear statement like “shall be protected by adding “where feasible” and “unless present and foreseeable future demand for public or commercial recreational activities that could be accommodated on the property is already provided for in the area.” Big question; who makes these decisions? Past requests to rezone the Poor Clares property in Seacliff and other property that is presently protected by the California Coastal Commission come to mind right away. My recommendation? This proposal should be deep-sixed. These are proposed changes that would allow developers to get around the protection of existing Coastal Act regulations with new language in the County’s General Plan and Local Coastal Plan by just changing these documents enough to allow local agencies to interpret them any way they wish. With County resources running as thin as they, why are we spending time and effort on “fixing” something that is working just fine? So what action was taken on this issue on Nov. 8th? None. Item 49 didn’t come up for discussion until after the Board’s lunch break when Supervisor Pirie moved that it be continued until the next meeting. This was agreed upon by all the supervisors with no comment; it now appears as Item 45 on the November 15th Board Of Supervisors (BOS) agenda.

Personal P.S. I’m eight weeks into a process to repair a “left hind foot and ankle osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease”. Graduated last week to a walking “cast” and getting around a lot better than with the “scooter” thingy. Looking forward to getting out and about more and started last week by attending neighbor Don Young’s book review and talk at Capitola Book Café. Great crowd, lots of friends. I sure hope somebody taped Don’s presentation of his WWII experiences.

(Paul Elerick is the chair of the Campaign for Sensible Transportation, , chair of the Transportation Committee of the Santa Cruz Group Sierra Club. and is a member of Nisene 2 Sea, a group of open space advocates).

PATTON’S PROGRAM. Gary talks about Monterey County Supes and permits, he talks about Medical Marijuana locally and federally, he mentions Ponzi Schemes, Regional Transportation and more on General Plans and changes that developers will love. READ IT HERE.

(Gary Patton is “Of Counsel” to the Santa Cruz law firm of Wittwer & Parkin, which specializes in land use and environmental law. The opinions expressed are Mr. Patton’s. Gary has his own website, “Two Worlds / 365”

The weather may dictate the day-to-day, but life in the long term conforms to Company Policy at our Antarctica stations. Although all property and materials belong to the National Science Foundation (NSF) as funded by Congress, our paychecks are not signed by Uncle Sam. The National Science Foundation (NSF) contracts out the non-science aspects of station life in ten year cycles, and the company they choose then subcontracts out sectors of the labor.

Right now I work for Raytheon Polar Services Company (RPSC), a subsidiary of everyone’s favorite weapons developer, Raytheon Technical Services. But not for much longer. The NSF will announce the next contract winner later this week, ending three years of contract extensions caused by the economic crisis.

This whole process is part of the general U.S. government trend towards using contract workers employed by corporations rather than creating government positions even in war zones like Iraq and Afghanistan. Antarctica has followed this model since the US Navy turned over operations to civilian control. Whoever gets the contract has tremendous influence on our quality of lives, naturally.

I know that people quit coming down after a decade or more of work in the Antarctic because they hated RPSC’s policies, and rumor says that some plan to reapply the moment the contract change becomes official. I don’t see how life under RPSC could differ too much from other multinationals. Same pros, same cons.

(Micaela Neus works for Raytheon Polar Services Company as a utilities technician and is currently living at Palmer Station, Antarctica until April 2012.

ENGAGING ANNOUNCEMENT.News just leaked out this week that Susan Hillhouse (curator at MAH) is now officially engaged to Sam Leask (he of Department Store, S.F. Opera and Dominican Hospital note). You can tell they’re happy by the way they light up Cooper Street. Congrats are definitely in order.

POGONIP WATCH’S NEW LOOKING WEBSITE. Peter Scott says, “We’ve just updated our website, so please have a look at it and send me any reports of glitches, suggestions for improvements, contributions—whatever. The home page has a new look, and there is now a “who we are” page and a page with a few photos.

VINTAGE de STEVEN DE CINZO. His last trick….see below

EAGANS DEEP COVER. Eagan reveals Cain’s universal appeal…see below.

LANDAU’S PROGRES. Saul writes, « OCCUPY WALL STREET Challenges legitimacy of the system” He states ,” Occupy America? Damn right! It’s ours – the 99%, not theirs (the 1%) – and our new communities cooperate for the common good. OWS has emerged not as a movement, nor a political tendency. These groups of citizens have declared the government, the economy and the political system as ILLEGITIMATE”. Read it all here.

(Saul Landau is an Institute for Policy Studies fellow whose films are on DVD from )

LISA JENSEN LINKS This week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (, we get ready for the 2nd Annual Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Reading, and prepare for a sneak peek at the new Morton Marcus Archive at the revamped McHenry Library up at UCSC.(Lisa Jensen has been writing film reviews and a column for Good Times since 1975.

WEEKEND. An absolutely fine film. Think about those tender sensitive romance films with Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Greer Garson and Ronald Colman. The ones where they meet, fall in love, then are forced to split. Same old story here in WEEKEND except that it’s two men. Stupendous and Oscar worthy acting by 2 unknowns, and not a fake or phony note in it….go see it, quick. Because if you don’t go immediately then they’ll have to let it go, and trust me, you won’t find this film widely distributed.

THE SKIN I LIVE IN. It’s a rare treat nowadays to see a film that still has an identifiable Directors touch…and Almodovar’s films still have his stamp all over them. You might not like the creepy taxidermy-Frankenstein plot but it’s an excellently told story, not one of the all too often corporate driven plots.

LOVE CRIME. Kristin Scott Thomas’ film are almost always guaranteed wonderful and so is this back stabbing French femme vs. femme. It’s a French Wall Street murder plot…and exciting, and well made. Hurry, go see this one too.

IMMORTALS. “Power-hungry King Hyperion (Mickey Rourke) and his ruthless army march across Greece, leaving burned-out villages and the corpses of the innocent in their wake. Hyperion’s goal is to find the long-lost Bow of Epirus; with this invincible weapon, he…” that’s an official quote from some website. If you can’t believe that Mickey Rourke’ s face couldn’t hold any more scabs and scars you should see this piece of crap film. Of course it was #1 at the box-office. It was one of the worst I’ve ever walked out of, even after trying my best to take a nap.

NODDY NOTE.This just in from Bubble Meister Tom Noddy…”I’m flying out to Abu Dhabi in the morning. They are opening a new science center there and I’ll demonstrate Bubble Magic and discuss the physics and mathematics of soap bubbles and soap films. 32 shows in 10 days …in the spring I’m invited to be a part of a magic convention in Kuala Lumpur. Abu Dhabi, Kuala Lumpur … maybe I’ll only go to places with cool sounding names from now on…oh hey … and I got an email from an astronaut who will go up to the international Space Station on December 21. He wants advice about soap bubbles ….honest. Tom Noddy.

FREE RADIO STATION CHANGE. Earth Firster Uncle Dennis Davie tells us…Free Radio Santa Cruz has changed its frequency to 101.3 MHz to better serve our listeners. Please tell everyone who is interested in better radio for Santa Cruz. Uncle Dennis FRSC EF! Radio.

SATYAGRAHA OPERA & GANDHI & PHILIP GLASS ON SATURDAY. Philip Glass has played Santa Cruz many times. Palookaville, Temple Beth El, Cabrilho and some I’ve forgotten and now’s a rare chance to see his opera about Mohandas K. Gandhi, Tolstoy, Tagore, Einstein , Martin Luther King and Akhnaten. (Satyagraha means Passive Resistance). The broadcast of Philip Glass’s Satyagraha will be presented live for only one day on Saturday, November 19, 2011 at 9:55 AM in Cinema 9 on Pacific Avenue.” The Met’s visually extravagant production is back for an encore engagement. Richard Croft once again is Gandhi in Philip Glass’s unforgettable opera, which the Washington Post calls “a profound and beautiful work of theater.” Plus, it’s sung in Sanskrit and there are not a lot of Sanskrit operas around nowadays.

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 sometimes old programs are archived…(see next paragraph) and go to WWW.KZSC.ORG. On November 15th the winners of Bookshop Santa Cruz’s Youth Writing contest will read their entries. Ralph Abraham will talk about 2 of his new books on November 22 followed by Gary Patton and UCSC Environmental Studies Interns. November 29 has Jim Mosher talking about his teens and alcohol program. Judge Paul Burdick returns to talk about justice on December 13th. Next year Claudia Sternbach guests on January 3 to talk about her new book, “Reading Lips”. Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening.

UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVES.In case you missed some of the great people I’ve interviewed in the last 5 years here’s a chronological list of just this year’s podcasts. Click here then tap on “listen here” to hear any or all of them… all over again. The Great Morgani on Street performing, 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 Conpany. Plus 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. Hear them all!!!

QUOTES. “Some people are like a Slinky… not much good for anything, but, still, you can’t help but smile when you push them down the stairs”, Nivedita Phoenix.

“Ah me! love can not be cured by herbs“, Ovid. “We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness – and call it love – true love”, Robert Fulghum.


Deep Cover by tim eagan.

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