Blog Archives

August 9 – 15, 2017

Highlights this week: Dream Inn expansion is definitely in the Coastal Zone!!!…Shocking photos of proposed Downtown Development… Landmark closing S.F. movie Theatre…Mauna Kea telescope protest on Maui brings six arrests… Greensite on Questionable funding for the Wharf Master Plan…Krohn re Meetings and Martin Bernal… Steinbruner and Aptos Fire Chief, Water for Santa Cruz, new city buses…Patton deals with Sempervirens Fund and conflict of interest problem…DeCinzo and What Would Jesus do?…Eagan and Nailing it Down…Jensen links to Lady Macbeth…I critique Inconvenient Truth Sequel, Detroit, Lady Macbeth…Quotes about “Immigrants”

BUILDING THE DREAM INN 1962. This was taken just before we lost the view of sky, Sisters Hospital and a sense of place. Also note the pilings from the long gone railroad wharf that were still in place. I didn’t have time to check the names of the Santa Cruz City Council at this time …and I hope they are/were proud of what they did!!! Just like we should put Mayor Cynthia Chase’s name on the new Hyatt House at Ocean and Broadway.

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection.

Additional information always welcome: email

TRUMP MEETS GILBERT & SULLIVAN. We watched the Trump-Rossini opera production…now catch this one.

DATELINE August 7. 2017

DREAM INN EXPANSION PLOT WITHIN COASTAL ZONE!!! In direct contrast to what folks were told when they went to the Ensemble/Dream Inn sales job/party on Tuesday August 1st…the Coastal Planner/analyst for the California Coastal Commission Ryan Moroney stated that the Dream Inn parking lot site for the proposed high rise IS in the coastal zone and a portion of it is in the appealable zone.

The appealable aspect is very important for a lot of very concerned environmentalists. What’s hard to figure out is whether Miller Maxfield Inc. knew they were lying or were just guessing, or were slightly misinformed by their leaders.   If they were guessing, it’s interesting that they made the same guess… that it’s not in the Coastal Zone! What an introduction and kick-off to this monstrous insult to our community, and our environmental laws.

PHOTOS FROM THE DOWNTOWN RECOVERY PLAN. Hopefully you can pick out the captions or recognize all the corners involved in this wholesale plot to forever change our Downtown…all for big bucks.

TRUMP AND STREISAND DUET. Jimmy Fallon sinks to a low but funny level here…!!!
THE REAL JOHNNY DEPP. This is a nutty interview…and I always like to remind folks that Depp’s brother had a bookstore in Santa Cruz right near where Richelle Noroyan’s parents had a restaurant near where Westside Video is now.

LANDMARK CLOSING SAN FRANCISCO MOVIE HOUSE. Landmark Theatres the folks who bought and operate our Nickelodeon and Del Mar Theatres decided to close their Opera Plaza Cinema on Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco. They still have the Clay and Embarcadero Center Cinemas and about 55 other art-independent film houses around the country. The Chronicle said last week….”Opera Plaza LP, owner of the commercial property at the 13-story condo tower in the Civic Center, has filed a request with the city to convert the ground-floor space from a movie theater to 6,000 square feet of retail sales and service. “Opera Plaza Cinema is no longer economically viable — and has not been for a long period of time,” said Nathan Nishiguchi of Urban Pacific Properties, managing agent for Opera Plaza. “The operator (Landmark Theatres) and the landlord have arrived at the decision that closing the theater is the most appropriate next step.” So far there’s no local angle to this story…let’s hope!!!

I was corrected when I wrote last week that UCSC’s clear-cut on Heller Drive was to be a “dump site” for just a teensy little bit of radioactive waste”. The $20 million building will “process and temporarily hold waste generated by teaching, research, and campus maintenance activities”, as Scott Hernandez-Jason told me. “currently, lab waste is directed to two different interim facilities, one on Science Hill and one at the base of campus”, he said. I wanted to make that perfectly clear. 

MAUNA KEA TELESCOPE PROTEST. Native Hawaiians and supporters have been protesting the building of another telescope on their sacred Mauna Kea. 6 were arrested when they locked and linked arms like our UCSC protestors did last year. The story from Huffpost tells it all…”The $1.4 billion project has received funding from a number of private and public organizations, including the University of California system, the California Institute of Technology and the Association of Canadian Universities for Research in Astronomy. The United States, Japan, India, Canada and China have all contributed as well.   

BBC link… BBC link…
What is puzzling is that we have seen NOTHING in our local (Santa Cruz, San Francisco, San Jose) papers. I haven’t seen any coverage on our TV networks either. It couldn’t be due to the University of California connections could it?

CABRILLO FESTIVAL OF CONTEMPORARY MUSIC NEWS. I always wondered, and especially so this year with their new and very cheery, happy conductor Cristian Macelaru being so new… who and how are the orchestra members chosen ? Who auditions them, etc. Well I learned that all the members of this year’s orchestra were recommended by either Marin Alsop or from Cristi’s own lists. No auditions, they were so well known and so proficient. That’s why they sound so good…and if you read the program you’ll see they come here from almost everywhere!!!

When the tsunami of March 11th 2011 reached Santa Cruz I was watching from the cliffs above Cowell Beach. While the harbor was being hammered with severe damage as the waves compressed into its narrow entrance, surfers and beach goers enjoyed the gentle ins and outs of the surges at Cowell’s. I almost went home for my swimsuit to join in the fun.

It was therefore a surprise to learn that the city of Santa Cruz in 2012 applied for a federal government grant for disaster funding for the municipal wharf, resulting they said, from damage to the wharf from the tsunami. Having witnessed the wharf barely caressed by the tsunami and being a curious person, I requested all documents related to this grant application.

The city stated in its application on Form ED-900, that, “the tsunami damaged the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf’s structural support system of 4,528 pilings and interlocking horizontal structural supports.” It further stated that, “many of these pilings and supports are damaged.” Additional comments included, The Wharf was severely damaged (my emphasis) by the March 2011 tsunami natural disaster. This project mitigates the immediate impacts of this physical damage while envisioning and preparing the Wharf to withstand similar events and be able to rebound quickly from future economic interruptions to a vital tourist and safety infrastructure project.” Based on such statements the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) approved the $850,000 disaster grant with a required local matching fund of $170,000, which was drawn from the city Parks and Recreation budget.

The project, according to the city’s entries on its application to EDA, was to replace and reinforce supports damaged by the impact of the tsunami waves; that construction could begin immediately after the potential grant award and would take place within a twelve-month period.  An Engineering Report to examine all pilings was to follow plus a Wharf Master Plan. A cost breakdown stated: Demolition and removal: $15,000; construction (of new pilings and supports) $485,000; architects and engineering fees $350,000. Then a curious switch happened. A revised Form ED-900 entry stated: “The IRC (Internal Review Committee) of the EDA recommended that the project description be limited to a wharf master plan and engineering report to evaluate the structural integrity of the wharf. Therefore there is not any construction with this project.” I requested more records. None was available. I was told that this revision was a based on verbal exchanges and the city did not attend the meeting of the IRC when such a recommended change was made. There are no receipts or records of any replaced wharf pilings in the year after the tsunami. The distribution of federal and matching local funds was also changed: the full $1.1 million went to ROMA who drafted the Wharf Master Plan and the 2014 Engineering Report from Moffat and Nichol, a subsidiary of ROMA.

The 2014 Engineering Report concluded that: Most piles are in excellent condition. A small percentage are (sic) in need of replacement.” And, “the piles are in good condition, overall. Less than 5% of the 4,450 piles need replacement. Notable exceptions are underneath buildings where replacement is difficult with the building structure in place.” And, “the condition of the structure is good; due to the quality of original construction and continuous maintenance. There are some areas of deterioration, primarily due to water leakage below the deck and vehicle overload in parking areas.” No mention of tsunami or severe damage. The only reference to the tsunami is from ROMA, the authors of the Wharf Master Plan who write in reference to closing the wharf prior to predicted periods of “extreme waves such as occurred with the 2011 tsunami” (my emphasis).

It would appear that the Wharf Master Plan is based on shaky ground. That plus the overwhelming opposition to the proposed changes to the wharf should give council pause for thought before digging the hole any deeper. Shelving this ill conceived and unpopular project would go a long way to restoring trust in local government.

Many thanks to all who requested petitions to gather signatures opposed to the Wharf Master Plan. If you would like to do the same, contact me at

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    Plus she’s an avid ocean swimmer, hiker and lover of all things wild.

By: Chris Krohn    Email Chris at

Meetings! Meetings!
Meetings, it’s what’s for dinner, breakfast and lunch, too. As a member of the Santa Cruz City Council you attend a lot of meetings. You have to have a disciplined regime too in order to avoid overeating the carbs, drinking too much coffee, and keeping a regular exercise routine becomes difficult. Body deterioration is always right around the corner in this job. But you keep going. (Why?) You meet— for-profits, non-profits, neighborhood groups, individuals with “issues,” and city department heads too; you sit–for council meetings, commission meetings, various board meetings; you meet some more–with mountain bikers, golfers, homeless-houseless activists, affordable housing advocates, and market-rate for-profit developers.Then repeat.Don’t know what I would do without meeting spots like Zachary’s, Cafe Bene, and Cafe Pergolesi…I’m getting to where I’m expecting a rent bill in the mail any day now.

So, I will cover a few of those meetings in this week’s column. Sound boring? I hope not, but when you get elected, and real peoples’ lives are involved in almost every decision the council makes, and various parts of $275 million (total city budget) are on the line, well, your attention becomes very focused…I met with the Santa Cruz City Manager (CM), Martín Bernal on July 25th. We talked about the Downtown Recovery Plan “amendments,” in which the developers are looking for the city council’s blessing to build taller buildings along Front Street, Pacific Avenue and the San Lorenzo River. It will be coming to the city council in September or October according to Bernal.

He went to Google Maps and showed me the parcels on his twenty-five-inch computer screen, the ones that have been assembled by market-rate housing developers. There they were, from Soquel to Laurel Street along Front and Pacific avenues. Developers Barry Swenson, Doug Ross and Owen Lawlor representing Devcon, are spearheading this current California gold rush. Will they build many affordable units? This is anyone’s guess, but I am guessing NO, not without an engaged community making their demands, as Frederick Douglas would say, and being present at all the meetings, formal and informal, that are coming up. (Note to self: there is something called the “Downtown Engagement Event” (?) scheduled for only special “stakeholders” to tour these building sites “in supporting the success of downtown,” according to item #8 on the city council’s consent agenda this week. Stay real tuned in on this one!)

We also talked about agendizing upcoming marijuana regulations (he will get back to me, “they keep being delayed,” Bernal said) as new state law kicks in January 1st. (Did you know marijuana is legal in California? But, will it become like Las Vegas where you can only sell it, but using it anywhere seems to be illegal.) There was a pushback email (spam?) about the new police chief. Somebody identifying themselves as the “POA” (Police Officers Association) was very unhappy over the new police chief and surmised that the fix was in before anyone was even interviewed for the job. Bernal assured me that he was in contact with the “real” POA, and the message was not from them, and the POA president was looking into the matter of who sent this errant email to the entire city council.

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HIROSHIMA DAY 2017. “Never Forget”. Taken August 6th at the “COLLATERAL DAMAGE” statue next to Town Clock in downtown Santa Cruz. The Santa Cruz Chapter of the United Nations Association sponsored the event.

We have two new department heads. Andy Mills is our new police chief and Lee Butler is the new planning director. Mills brings a lot of experience from San Diego and Eureka, while Butler has been working in the busy housing boom towns of San Jose, Gilroy, and Santa Clara. While Mills found a place to rent in Capitola, Butler has been living in Santa Cruz for the past 15 years. He currently resides on the Westside. Butler will command a staff of 38 with an $8 million budget. Mills has 94 sworn officers and a $27 million budget. I met with Butler last week for an hour and a half freewheeling, one-on-one discussion about his past and the Santa Cruz present and future. (I hope to sit down with Chief Mills sometime next week.) Butler is all about “transparency” he said. He’s got experience with “traffic demand management” plans, environmental impact reports and the creation of affordable housing. His experience was that in Santa Clara and San Jose they almost always extracted the required number of inclusionary rentals and for-sale units from developers (10% in Santa Clara and 20% in San Jose).

He also mentioned that assessing developers an “impact fee” of $30-$40 per square foot brought in some significant money to the affordable housing fund. Can we do it here? That will be up to the city council. I found it refreshing that Butler had more questions than answers and he readily acknowledged that he was on a sort of listening tour and trying to get up to speed with current city culture. As I bid Lee farewell I mentioned that he’s perhaps going into the community buzz saw of scrutiny and asked if he was a bit nervous. He said he wasn’t, and looked forward to the challenge of working with the council, his own staff and the community.

Bernie Quote of the Week. “ The reality is…. Fraud is the business model of both Wall Street and the pharmaceutical industry. It’s not the exception. It’s the rule. (Aug. 4th. 2017)

~ 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.

By: Becky Steinbruner    Email Becky at

It was amazing to many Aptos residents to see that the new bridge over Trout Creek on Valencia Road remained CLOSED FOR USE over the weekend even though the work was complete last Friday.  Why?  Simply to allow Supervisor Zach Friend to have a glorious publicity event at 11:30am on Monday.  Zach Friend could not be bothered to show up at the bridge last Friday morning when about 20 youngsters were gathered there for some other photo op…The bridge remained closed all weekend.  Construction crews even parked equipment across both access points to block any possible entry, just in case someone got the idea to move the chain link fence sections and drive, bicycle or walk across. 

Stunning, isn’t it? Why does Zach Friend care more about his own publicity stunts than the health and welfare of the nearby 140+ residents of Rolling Green Estates and Aptos School Road?   In addition to having to travel over 5 additional miles to town, they have had increased emergency response times to medical and safety issues in their neighborhood since the road was closed last January.  Well, he does have his own political future to think of, you know…

I think it is interesting that this “temporary bridge”, as part of the project’s $3.8 million repair, took eight months to complete.  Contrast that with an almost identical situation on Nelson Road in Scotts Valley.  That “temporary bridge” was in place within three weeks after the culvert failed and, according to the County Department of Public Works report issued to the Board of Supervisors as Item #47 on the August 8, 2017 Consent Agenda, cost $351,000 and is complete as a FEMA repair.  I think there is more to this picture than meets the eye…

Say “Cheese”, Zach.

I found it shocking that Chief Jon Jones could ask the Aptos / La Selva Fire District Board to extend his contract another two years when he has zero support and trust from the firefighters and chiefs.  Although the Board has remained silent since last month’s meeting, it became known recently that Chief Jones did indeed make his request on July 13, the date of the last Board meeting. 

ATTEND THE THURSDAY, AUGUST 10 APTOS /LA SELVA FIRE DISTRICT  BOARD MEETING IF POSSIBLE.  The Board will vote to decide whether to approve or deny Chief Jones’ request.  Remember that Firefighter Local 3535 voted unanimously “No Confidence” in Chief Jones last April, and the Aptos /La Selva Fire Chiefs Association followed that action in May with a unanimous vote of “No Confidence”.   This is unprecedented action, and truly calls out to the Community for support of those who serve us with dedication

Write to the Board and Ms. New: (you must specifically ask Ms. New to have your comments included in public correspondence in the Board’s agenda packet)

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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.

By: Gary Patton    Email Gary at

FROM GARY A. PATTON  From Gary’s “We Live In A Political World” website… #219 / Save The Trees???

The Sempervirens Fund just sent me a fundraising email (see above for the graphic that accompanied it). Sempervirens is a nonprofit organization that has been saving redwood trees since 1900. I am not exactly a “big donor,” but I have consistently supported the Sempervirens Fund, which is why I am on the organization’s email list.

This latest email from Sempervirens, though, came at a bad time, as far as I am concerned, because I recently heard about a controversy in which I think the Sempervirens Fund did exactly the wrong thing. This wasn’t a good time for the Sempervirens Fund to ask me for money.

I routinely read Bratton Online, a weekly blog covering all things Santa Cruz, and the July 26 – August 1 edition had some distressing news about Sempervirens

Here is the Bratton Online story in its entirety:

Betsy Herbert, longtime forest activist, resigned from the Board of Directors of the Sempervirens Fund. Her environmental and community serving credentials are impressive: A PhD in environmental studies from UCSC, longtime local forest advocate, former watershed manager for San Lorenzo Valley Water District, currently President, Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregional Council and board member, Center for Farmworker Families. Most importantly now is that she served on the Sempervirens Fund board for 15 years until she resigned last week. 

Historically, the Sempervirens Fund has used money from donors to provide permanent protection to the redwood forests of the state. Now, over Betsy’s objection, the Board has put Rich Gordon, former Member of the Assembly, on the Sempervirens Board. What makes this exceptional is that Gordon has just been named as the President and Executive Director of the California Forestry Association, which is the state’s main lobbying group representing the timber industry. The CFA website tries to present itself as working for “sustainable forests.” In fact, the CFA’s main mission in Sacramento is to make it easier to cut down more trees. Here’s the California Forestry Association website

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~There IS such a thing as a bona fide conflict of interest. I know one when I see one. Apparently, the Sempervirens Fund Board doesn’t…or doesn’t mind the conflict, on the theory that the organization is going to get some sort of benefit.

Whatever best describes the reality, the words “non-donor” best describe me, with respect to the Sempervirens Fund. 

I am not giving money to an organization that says it wants to “Save Trees,” while it puts the state’s foremost timber industry lobbyist on its Board of Directors.

I am not giving money to an organization that doesn’t know what a conflict of interest is…..

Or doesn’t care!….

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


CLASSICAL DeCINZO. First there was no room at the inn…now this. See below a scroll or two.

EAGAN’S DEEP COVER. See Eagan’s “Hitting that damned nail” down a few pages. As always, at you will find his most recent  Deep Cover, the latest installment from the archives of Subconscious Comics, and the ever entertaining Eaganblog with his ideas on

Yes and Not No” this week.

LISA JENSEN LINKS. Lisa writes: “It’s not Shakespeare, but expect something wicked indeed in the psychological thriller, Lady Macbeth, this week at Lisa Jensen Online Express ( And speaking of the Bard, find out how Santa Cruz Shakespeare turns an iffy play into a visual delight with The Two Gentlemen of Verona!” Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.  

AN INCONVENIENT SEQUEL:TRUTH TO POWER, We should never forget that there were 22,438 Trump Voters in Santa Cruz County and they should all be allowed in free to see Al Gore’s update on Climate Warming. As you know climate warming is worse than ever. Facts, experts, news clips, common sense and a great documentary team show us just how bad itreally is right now.

LADY MACBETH. A well deserved 89 on RT and it should be more. Florence Pugh plays the Lady, and she only made one other film The Falling in 2015. The book source was written in 1865 and this version is set in a Downton Abbey time. It’s full of sex, great costumes, amazing woman empowerment (that you won’t like!) and a thriller that will hold you to the screen every second. I loved it. 9 Thumbs up.

DETROIT. Will Poulter who plays a Detroit cop is one of the most dislikable actors we’ll ever see onscreen.  You wouldn’t like him even if he played Jesus, Tom Hanks or even Cristi Macelaru. He leads the cops into the Algiers Hotel killings that happened in Detroit in 1967. It’s all about racial hatred and cops killing black people. Way overdone, no depth, no development and far below the work that Kathryn Bigelow and her work directing The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty.  Here’s a link to The Guardian statistics about how many people Police kill in the United States each year….

A GHOST STORY. Excellent, wonderful, brilliant, thoughtful, meaningful…really worth seeing and thinking about. It should be titled : “A Ghost’s Story“. It is a story about a kindly ghost who watches the world after he dies. No blood, no BOOS, no closets, just Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck have lead roles. Casey as the bedsheeted ghost wanders through time and locations’ trying to connect or figure out what life is all about. It is well worth seeing, probably twice!! I’ve seen it twice and it’s even better the second time!! ENDS THURSDAY AUGUST 10….darn!

THE MIDWIFE. Catherine Deneuve has always been magnetic in her films and she still is as an aging and still controlling mother. 86 on RT. Well known French actor Catherine Frot plays the daughter of the man Deneuve cheated with decades ago. It’s a beautiful, excellent film that you’ll remember for years. Go see it. ENDS THURSDAY AUGUST 10..damn!.

THE BIG SICK. Kumail Nanjiani the Pakistani jerk from the “Silicon Valley” tv sit com not only wrote this plot but he and his real wife lived it. The film is a bit long but it’s well worth seeing. It’ll grab you when you least expect it. He’s a standup comic and falls in love with Zoe Kazan, a “white” girl. It’s heart rending, funny and  a tale told of cultural differences between his traditional Pakistani family and her very contemporary Mom  (Holly Hunter) and dad. Go see it…it’ll surprise you.(and I’ll predict some Awards around December-January).

ATOMIC BLONDE. Charlize Theron does a nearly perfect job as the Blonde in this James Bond – Berlin Wall era action movie. Very well done fight scenes, complex spy loyalty plot, John Goodman is getting more and more difficult to believe, and he’s in it too. James McAvoy is there too but he doesn’t matter much. It’ll be the first of many sequels believe me, even though it didn’t do that well on opening weekend. Charlize T. also produced the film, and it’s based on a graphic novel.

DUNKIRK. Acclaimed auteur Christopher Nolan directs this World War II thriller about the evacuation of Allied troops from the French city of Dunkirk before Nazi forces can take hold. co-star, with longtime Nolan collaborator Hans Zimmer providing the score.

Dunkirk is a city in France and during WWII the Nazis drove the allied troops to Dunkirk’s beaches. There were 400, 000 troops stranded there with no ships to take them to safety. Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh and Mark Rylance are in the film briefly and do fine acting jobs. The film is all war and is well made and directed…better than most war films. But with City Of Ghosts playing now that’s the one to see IF you like genuine war films.

MAUDIE.  A 90 on Rotten Tomatoes and Sally Hawkins plus Ethan Hawke play a severly crippled arthritic and her cruel, stubborn husband…and it’s a true story. The film is sad, poignant, heart gripping and maybe even mawkish. Other than some fine acting by all involved I’m not sure why they made this film, or why you might enjoy it. Me? I’m not sure if I did.

LANDLINE. A New York and Jewish themed near comedy that isn’t very funny…or meaningful. John Turturro is the only familiar face in the cast. It’s about a disturbed family and the dozens of lies they try to live with. Everybody cheats on each other. You would come away from this film feeling much better about your family…which must operate much better than this one. ENDS THURSDAY AUGUST 10.

WONDER WOMAN. IF you like comic book heroes or heroines (hope its ok to use that term) Wonder woman is several cuts about the usual no brainer/ violent/monster filled box office smashes we keep seeing. Gal Gadot is a former Miss Israel and we keep hearing about that. She plays W. Woman. Robin Wright, is in it too and she is a long time favorite of mine. She is Sean Penn’s ex. Chris Pine just jumps around looking like the usual Hollywood cutie pie. If you remember that she’s a comic book star and is supposed to battle, fight and pose in tight pants all the time you could enjoy this more than most of that ilk.

WAR ON PLANET OF THE APES. This should really be classified as an animated saga. It’s all digital ape stuff with Woody Harrelson as an evil human. It has a plot that could make you think seriously…if you can take the computer apes seriously. It could eb said to relate to the Democrats versus the Republicans. Republicans (Harrelson) want to build a wall among other plot devices and the more liberal apes just want to have peace.  About 90 % of the film is centered on wars between the two forces and who will rule in the future. Better to go to one of our museums or galleries instead.

SPIDERMAN:HOMECOMING. Michael Keaton completely steals every movie he’s ever made and he sure does playing an evil “Vulture” in this latest version of the web spinner (there have been at least 13 versions of Spidey on TV and the movies!!) Spidey is a high school student with Teresa Tomei as his mom. Robert Downey jr. is back as Iron Man. It doesn’t matter much but Gwyneth Paltrow is in it too. It’s a little better than most of the Marvel Comics hero movies but not much.

VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS. (See above for the NO 3D at the Regal 9). This is an excellent example of a comic book film. Set in the 28th century its silly, preposterous, amazing, and it’s sort of like the first Marlon Brando Superman film.  The cast actually includes Herbie Hancock, Ethan Hawke and Clive Owen…but not very much! It’s full of stolen creatures from Star Wars, Avatar, yep even Jar Jar Binks, and long scenes looking like Blade Runner. Only if you like comic books.



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. Dr. Shawna Riddle (PAMF) guests on August 8th talking about staying healthy in Santa Cruz. She’s followed by John Aird talking about C.L.U.E. (Coalition for Limiting University Expansion) and what they’ve accomplished. On August 15 Julie James releases the news about the new Season of The Jewel Theatre. After Julie, interventional cardiologist and Doctor Neil Sawhney (PAMF) brings us up to date on heart news. Then on August 29 The San Francisco Mime Troupe’s Marilet Martinez tells us about their 9/9, 9/10 performances here. September 5 has Lisa Hadley and Davis Banta previewing their Quality Of Life play. Then therapist Alexandra Kennedy talks about her Awakening to Life In Transition retreat. On October 10 Phyllis Rosenblum discusses the Santa Cruz Chamber Players 2017-18 season. The top winners of the Bookshop Santa Cruz Young Writers contest read their works on November 28. 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

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 here 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.

“We asked for workers. We got people instead”,  Max Frisch
“Immigration is the sincerest form of flattery”,  Jack Paar
“Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists”,  Franklin D. Roosevelt
“The truth is, immigrants tend to be more American than people born here”, Chuck Palahniuk, Choke
“I take issue with many people’s description of people being “Illegal” Immigrants. There aren’t any illegal Human Beings as far as I’m concerned”, Dennis Kucinich

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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Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.

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