Blog Archives

August 28 – September 2, 2014

DOWNTOWN SANTA CRUZ. Circa 1875. Those are the horsecar tracks going right down the middle of a very wide Pacific Avenue. The publicly owned horsecars would take folks
down to the beach…of course that idea had to be stopped – by some other city council I’ll bet.

Yes, that’s a fire on the left and I can’t find an exact date or location when it happened.

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection.
Additional information always welcome: email

Dateline August 25, 2014

SANTA CRUZ CITY COUNCIL…BACKGROUND. Once upon a time our City Council listened to the citizens. There were all colors and stripes of people’s action groups and the City and County responded in kind. Then people like Scott Kennedy, Mike Rotkin and Cynthia Mathews took over the City Council. These folks and people like Neal Coonerty, Ryan Coonerty and others followed. They all claimed and claim they knew what’s best for us. They claimed they had more facts and information and we citizens couldn’t possibly understand all the issues that they would decide for us. Issues back a few years like expanding The Dream Inn, and lately The De-Sal Water problem were part of their “TRUST US” attitude. They cater and bow down before any developers…like hoping that Starbucks will build a 3 story building on our most visible corner. Do we see the Council reaching out to any other locally owned coffee business and giving them huge tax and fee breaks? There’s no helping Verve, Lulu’s, The Coffee Roasting Company or any others build a truly great looking structure. Another Starbucks…why? Nowadays we have Lynn Robinson’s City Council (with Cynthia Mathews in the control seat) working hard to stop the San Francisco Mime Troupe from performing here, we have The Great Morgani playing all over California and creating super new outfits and still he waits to hear from the city Council if he can play on our Pacific Avenue…it’s been months. And as any tourist or local will be happy to tell you, that same City Council somehow can’t stop motorcycles from roaring and ruining our downtown experience. ONE MORE TIME…we need new and better and more intelligent thinking on our city council.

THE GREAT MORGANI. Mike Ross aka Mormuzzi made some extra fine clips of The Great Morgani….watch this one…it’ll remind you just how talented and creative Morgani was…and is…and will be… IF the City of Santa Cruz’s City Council allows him back on Pacific Avenue.

BOARDWALK & WATER USAGE & INJURIES??? Wouldn’t it be great to get official assurance that the boardwalk with its many water based rides has been certified by some City Official and can tell us that they are genuinely cutting back on their wild and crazy water wastage, or at least turning off the water rides during the drought??? Remember too, how we used to read about all the Boardwalk injuries that required treatment at Dominican? If you have any Doctor or nurse friends who work in Emergency rooms around the area, ask them about how the injuries never quite make it into the Sentinel anymore!!!

SUNDAY MORNING’S EARTHQUAKE. It was nothing compared to our 1989 biggie…but this was all I could find online by Monday.

KATHY BISBEE TO LEAVE THE AREA!!! Kathy Bisbee made a long and important number of changes to Santa Cruz…and now she’s moving. Once upon a time she worked for John Robbins the ice cream heir, then she was with CALPIRG. I met her when she was directing SCAN (Santa Cruz Action Network) We worked together when she was Cruzio’s marketing director. Then she went with both Santa Cruz Community Television and Community Media Access Partnership (CMAP) in Gilroy.She recently accepted a job in Brookline/Boston as executive director at a community media center there She’s going to be around Santa Cruz and Gilroy until October and then we can start missing her fulltime.

SANDY BROWN TO RETURN TO AREA!!! Sandy’s a co-owner of Swanton Berry Farm and was an assistant professor of Public Affairs at the University of San Francisco. She’s a farm labor consultant and was heavily involved in all our local politics. Back in the day. She’s returning….you’ll hear more.

DOWNTOWN ALBANY, NEW YORK. Be very careful and do NOT think about our County Building when you watch this.

JON SAGEN. Jon Sagen died last week, he was Melody Sharp’s husband among other things. He was one of my rare links to my life before Santa Cruz. Jon worked for Frank Werber. Werber was the guy behind the Kingston Trio, and worked at the Hungry I , helping out such stars as Mort Sahl and Tom Lehrer. My “Goodtime Washboard 3” recorded some stuff in Werber’s studios. I was the voice behind Papa Cribari wines and recorded there and Jon Sagen and I became good friends. He was a master at organizing, communicating and making friends everywhere. We’ll miss him.

LEONIE SHERMAN FUNDRAISERS. This Thursday (Aug. 28) 6 p.m. at the Tannery ArtBar. Tom Noddy will make bubble magic and the hot street band Eight Dice Cloth will play. Then on Saturday, Sept. 6th. Leonie will be at Staff of Life at 4 p.m. The Coffee Zombie Collective will play and there’ll be delicious food and another chance to ask and tell Leonie important things.

ELERICKS INPUT. Mr Paul Elerick of Aptos writes…
To the Take Back Aptos people who have written to say they are different than Take Back Santa Cruz, (TBSC) this is why I respectfully disagree with them. As mentioned in an earlier Bratton Online, I have been blocked on Facebook by Take Back Aptos (TBA) and TBSC. I can view them from any number of friends on Face Book. Without going into all the same names I found on both TBA and TBSC, a short review showed that one of TBSC’s admin persons is on TBA and several Santa Cruz TBSC members frequently post on both TBA and TBSC. And for those of you who are already on both TBA and TBSC, why are you insisting you are not the same? To both groups, if you really are interested in what happens in both Aptos and Santa Cruz, how do you justify blocking people when you claim to “love our diverse community and everyone is welcome here. ” I was blocked, said nothing at all, never one post. I didn’t make it 24 hours. Hmmm. What are you afraid of?

(Paul Elerick is co-chair with Peter Scott of the Campaign for Sensible Transportation, , and he’s a member of Nisene 2 Sea, a group of open space advocates).

ABOUT RECYCLING. Great use of a flash Mob!!

PATTON’S PROGRAM. Gary talks more about how and when to get involved with land use issues, and about a new “private road” policy in Monterey County. The Soquel Creek Water District has a special meeting Tuesday 8/26 to talk about having their own De-Sal water plant.He speaks about the “Community Advisory Group” and widening Highway 156. He refers to the problem of Fracking” and groundwater. Capitola’s General Plan is going to be amended, and that affects all kinds of development. Read the complete scripts of the above at Gary Patton’s KUSP Land Use site . Gary is a former Santa Cruz County Supervisor (20 years) and an attorney who represents individuals and community groups on land use and environmental issues. The opinons expressed are Mr. Patton’s \. Gary has his own website, Two Worlds/365” –

SANDY LYDON’S SECRETS. Historian and author Sandy Lydon creates great newsletters. This Summer-Fall 2014 issue of Central Coast Secrets contains surprising coverage of our earlier great droughts. Like the Drought of Lynchings, The Drought of Screaming Horses, PLUS he talks about celebrating the anniversary of our local great quake of 1989. (just a bit before our latest Napa shaker and which is now named When The Barrels Lost their Bungs). Go here to join Sandy and friends and their coastal adventures.

ANNIE STEINHARDT’S NEWEST BOOK. Fiddler, teacher, author Annie Steinhardt has written another book. She calls it, “Midlife Monkey Madness”. Way back when, she wrote Thunder La Boom about her days as a dancer in San Jose. Then she wrote Pele Voo Doo Live all about her years with the Pele Juju band. “MM Madness” is described as a socio-biological romance and is available at BookShop Santa Cruz. (better hurry, the Bookshop was down to two copies on Saturday when I was there browsing).

CLASSICAL DeCINZO. It’s true, De Cinzo does take vacations…see below.

EAGAN’S DEEP COVER. Tim takes arms against a sea of our troubles. Check down below.

LISA JENSEN LINKS. “This week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (, find out what’s new in the Alias Hook universe, learn why a book’s pithy opening lines may be the very last thing an author writes, and take a journey to redemption with the mighty Brendan Gleeson in the new Irish drama, Calvary.” Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.


WHAT IF. Daniel Radcliffe is rapidly proving he’s more of an actor than the Hobbits role allowed. Zoe Kazan and Adam Driver add a tremendous amount of skill to this film. It’s cute, feel-good , not brilliant, but it’ll keep you involved throughout. Daniel and Zoe do have a great magnetism between them.

SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR. Most importantly The Sin City Movies aren’t like regular films. They are half drawn/graphic novel/ black and white, comic book, pulp fiction style movies. Mickey Rourke, Josh Brolin, and Jessica Alba are in it, but you might have a tough time recognizing them. Joseph Gordon-Levitt has the best short story role. I never could find Jeremy Piven in it. But Bruce Willis, Stacy Keech, and Ray Liotta all do well. Just go warned…it’s violent, beyond bloody, and uniquely styled.

IF I STAY. If you liked The Fault in Our Stars (and I did) you might like If I Stay. A young cellist is almost killed in a car crash and she has to decide if she wants to come back to this life. Yes, it’s a weeper, feel depressed, after-life kind of film. Joshua Leonard who plays the girls’ once hip father is the son of Bob and Joann Leonard of Watsonville. Joshua was also in the original Blair Witch Project…and has scarier stories about the off screen Blair Witch happenings than we saw onscreen. Go only if you enjoy those flowing tears.


WHEN THE GAME STANDS TALL. Remember James Caviezel ??? He played christ in “The Passion of The Christ“. From what I gathered, he plays the same christ-type football coach in this Hallmark Greeting Card saga. We’ve seen it before. Way too many times. And I’ve been reading that half the stories in the film aren’t true.

EXPENDABLES 3 . What some movie stars won’t do for several million dollars. You take

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dolph Lundgren , Mel Gibson, Slyvester Stallone, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas, Kelsey Grammer, Wesley Snipes, Jason Stratham and even Harrison Ford…what kind of a movie can that cast produce??? If you do go, let me know if there’s any reason anybody else should go.

LET’S BE COPS. This numb nutz movie earned a 10 on Rotten Tomatoes. Damon Wayans, Jr and Jake Johnson are in it and so is Andy Garcia (for some reason, like $$$). Don’t encourage these people to make more movies…don’t go. Read any critic’s review first…they all agree.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. I must confess and proclaim I did not see this movie. Any film that has a talking raccoon named “Rocket” as a major character is more than I could stand. Your guess on this movie is every bit as good as mine. Actually if anyone sees this film and likes it, let me know. Especially if you can think of a reason for anyone else to see it.

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES IN 3 D. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a miserable 19. I’m giving it a complete pass…and need a nap much more.

STEP UP ALL IN. One of the innumerable mutant versions of the original Step Up film that starred Channing Tatum. Just look at the trailer online…you’ll agree I’m, sure.


THE CALVARY. Brendan Gleeson is the Roman Catholic priest in a small town in Ireland. The acting is perfect, the photography makes you want to visit Ireland next week. The tension, ethics, morals, God, and murder all combine to make this an award winner. Gleeson should be handed this years Oscar now. Better go tonight before it becomes another six day wonder and leaves town.

MAGIC IN THE MOONLIGHT. There was a sizable audience at the Nick’s very first Santa Cruz screening of Woody’s latest saga. Ah ha I thought, even with the really terrible reviews of M.I.M. we all still like Woody’s worst films better than most of the rest. I was wrong. This is one of the worst W. Allen films I’ve seen. Colin Firth as sort of a Harry Houdini anti-psychic magician is bitter, mean, and completely unforgivable all the way through the film. Emma Stone is no match for Mia Farrow, Scarlett Johansson, Diane Keaton, Cate Blanchett, or any of the brilliant feminine attractions Woody has directed in the past. Probably his 2015 film will be better…it has to be.

LUCY. Scarlett Johansson struts, slinks and shoots her way to the top in this science fiction thriller. Morgan Freeman loses a few acting points as he pretends he’s some kind of a professor. Amazingly, Lucy topped Hercules in box office money on opening weekend. That definitely proves something. Honestly, it’s a fun story and you’ll stay attached to the screen all the way through. The story is ridiculous, the plot has huge mistakes, there’s not one ounce of logic to it, it’s just fun to watch.

A MOST WANTED MAN. This is almost Philip Seymour Hoffman’s last film. It got a 90 on Rotten Tomatoes. Rachel McAdams, Willem Dafoe and Robin Wright play various roles as secret agents from The USA, Germany, Islamic territories, Russia and elsewhere. It’s a slow moving and very confusing story from John le Carre’s book. I couldn’t follow the connections and lost interest after the first 20 minutes.

100 FOOT JOURNEY. A more memorable title would be “Slumdog Chef“, or “The Grand Budapest Restaurant” or “Monsoon Wedding Eats Out“. Even Helen Mirren doesn’t save this latest in the “aren’t East Indians cute and funny” type film. It’s degrading to all concerned. But I must confess, I went home and made my first omelette in months.

BOYHOOD. This film made some sort of cinema history because the director took 12 years to film the same cast in the same roles as they aged. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 99 but I think the acting is so terrible it shouldn’t have been made…or released. Any sensitivity, reality, sincerity, or emotions are spoiled by the amateurish acting. Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke play the parents, and they aren’t very good either. Wait and rent it.

THE GIVER. This is one of those teen-age book series made into a big time film. The teenagers in the audience loved this sci-fi “1984” future world attempt. Jeff Bridges does an excellent job with his gruffy codger professor role, but Meryl Streep loses points and credibility for suffering through this way overwritten, poorly filmed pointless simplistic plot. Don’t even rent it.

GET ON UP. This is the bio-pic of James Brown the self titled King of Soul. All his songs are dubbed, the acting isn’t bad but Brown (according to the film) was one mess of a human. It seems like he had no friends, no family, and was simply unlikable. A genuine downer of a film.

KZSC 88.1 FM or live online at

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 August 26 Mary Altier and Carol Trengove talk about the Pajaro Valley Arts Council’s newest exhibit, then Land Use Attorney and activist Gary Patton takes the second half hour. Sept. 2 we have Julie James and Susan Myer Silton from The Jewel Theatre Company talking about G.B. Shaw’s play “Saint Joan” opening 9/04. Then therapist Alexandra Kennedy talks about her new book “Honoring Grief“. Rose Sellery and Tina Brown discuss this years Fashion Art Show on September 16. Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening. Email me always at

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 update includes Nikki Silva, Michael Warren, Tom Noddy, Anita Monga, Mark Wainer, Judy Johnson-Darrow, 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. Hear them all!!!

QUOTES.“Philosophy is to the real world as masturbation is to sex”, Karl Marx. “I feel like a million tonight—but one at a time”, Mae West. “It was a man’s world—then Eve arrived”, Richard Armour.


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Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.

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