Blog Archives

January 22 – 28, 2014

HOLY CROSS CHURCH AND SANCTUARY.. Circa 1889. Margbater Koch’s book says the Church on the left was dedicated in 1858 and was used until the brick sanctuary on the right was built in 1889.

Additional information always welcome: email

FIRST HILAROUS PARODY OF “HER”. This one is from Spike Jonze, and Peter J. Logan discovered it.

A SECOND TAKEOFF ON “HER” . Susan Gibbs eked out this almost serious re-take of “HER”, the movie..Everybody has thought about it, these folks filmed one !

DATELINE January 20, 2014

THOSE DARNED CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES. The Santa Cruz City Council race that happens this year is getting interesting. Rochelle Naroyan told me she’s running and has announced sooner this time because she believes she started her campaign too late last time. Cynthia Chase is going to wait another 2 years to run. Tim Goncharoff has been loading up all our Facebook Pages for months and I still don’t know who supports him. Then there’s Leonie Sherman, she’s a self defense instructor who’s worked with Women’s Crisis Center. Steve Schnaar is also rumored to be running for council. He’s active with the Hub For Sustainable Living, the homelessand the Sanctuary Camp. Steve Pleich will probably run again and will get just about the same amount of votes. Rachel Goodman’s name is out there floating around. She’s got more than enough campaign experience to be able to make some kind of impact.

THOSE DARNED 3rd DISTRICT SUPERVISOR CANDIDATES. By now most folks know that Ryan Coonerty is running for Dad’s 3 rd District supervisor seat. The only names I could come up with so far as even possible candidates are Bob Lamonica, who has a nearly serious “thing ” about anybody named Coonerty. Jane Yett was thinking about running butno late breaking hints from her camp lately. Greg Caput has some opposition and I’ll get to it asap but as of this writing….nada.

POETRYAND LAUREATES , ANOTHER LOOK. Bill Grant sent this thoughtful protest.

SHAKESPEARE’S “PLAY ON” IN FULL GEAR. That’s great news about Patrick Stewart joining the “Play On” team/movement/campaign/cause to revive Shakespeare Santa Cruz. The large question we should all keep wondering about (until there’s an answer) is why won’t UCSC allow “Play On” to use the huge mailing list of supporters/attendees that they built up over the last 35 years??? That mailing list has always been a source of great money/donations coming in for SSC every year. Now UCSC pulls some excuse like “privacy” and won’t allow the list to be used. It would solve 1000’s of financial problems, and more than likely put Shakespeare back on the boards this summer. Stay tuned to this one…something’s afoot!!

CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS NEED NEW THINKING. This is NOT a reference to Mayor Robinson’s idea of having a folk singer open each City Council session with a folk song. Last Sunday’s Chronicle had a great article titled “Democracy better served in coffee-house atmosphere” by Joe Mathews. He was talking about City Council Chamber almost everywhere. He talked about the raised dais, rows of seats facing them, the quiet that is demanded, the nutty gadflies that attend these meetings, how the real business is done in the hallways outside the Chamber. How even more business is done in “closed sessions”. He says we should re-design the City Council chambers “take out the old fixed benches” and make it more like Starbuck’s!!! We’d have tables, nice couches, a bar to serve coffee and maybe even beer and wine! I’m not so sure about Starbuck’s but it’s worth re-thinking about. Read the details here…

ELERICK’S INPUT. Paul emails to say…

Water Management Issues

Droughts seem to bring on the worst in people. The entire state is facing the same problem, lack of rainfall and we’ll all take a hit on this one. We better get used to it, and yes that means those who have their own wells need to provide some way of monitoring themselves. One sure way to fill the Board of Supervisors meetings is to put private well metering/monitoring on the agenda. What makes private well owners so special?

Santa Cruz needs to keep close watch on the various “task forces” that have come and gone, chartered to come up with a solution to this problem. So far, the only solution I’ve heard that’s being considered is to throw more money at the unfinished de-sal EIR. That whole EIR will probably have to be started over from scratch whenever a community agreed-upon plan to address the water crises is completed.

When will our water agencies explain why they continue to add new hookups while asking existing customers to stop using so much water? Start with justifying adding huge projects like Aptos Village Plan and expansion of Rancho Del Mar Center that Safeway is contemplating.

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

POOL TRICK SHOTS. Ron Clegg found this gem… I can’t embed it, but follow the link – it’s very impressive!

HAWAII’S NORTH SHORE SURF FROM A DRONE. Every soul in our area has seen almost enough surf filmage. But, not like this !!! Simply gorgeous !!!

Pipeline Winter 2013 from Eric Sterman on Vimeo.

PATTON’S PROGRAM. Gary’s topics this week on KUSP are the new Urban Farming law which should help our urban environment. HE talks about The Santa Cruz City Council’s very suspect attempt to stack the Water Supply Advisory Committee. Then he’s all about Water & Wastewater and tours of the Graham Hill Treatment plant. Then he deals with the very real problem of Saltwater Intrusion in Mid-County, and possibly the regulation of private wells. Then there is the Rail Trail Plans and The League of Women Voters meeting happening on February 9th. Read all of above scripts at Gary Patton’s KUSP Land Use site Gary is a former Santa Cruz County Supervisor, and an attorney who represents individuals and community groups on land use and environmental issues. The opinions expressed are Mr.Patton’s. Gary has his own website, “Two Worlds / 365?

CLASSICAL DE CINZO. DeCinzo muses on the lack of riots…scroll below…

EAGANS DEEP COVER. Eagan deals with the bully pulpit, and a few bags of tea !!! See below…

LISA JENSEN LINKS. Lisa was busy writing but catch up at Lisa Jensen Online Express (, She’s working on her American edition of the new book and we’re all boning up on the annual film Critic’s Smackdown at the Nick on Feb.23. Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.

……In order of perfection……

JACK RYAN. Another film and another actor in the Jack Ryan franchise. Chris Pine is very cute as Ryan and he does as good a job as you can expect. The plot isn’t from a Tom Clancy book this time. It’s about Russia destroying our financial system and somehow Kiera Knightly is Jack Ryan’s love partner. She shouldn’t have been because she just doesn’t fit in somehow. You keep thinking gee, that’s Keira Knightly playing that role. Kevin Costner plays Jack’s boss and he’s ok, just ok. BUT the plot is tight and complex enough that it will hold you all the way through. Go if you like spy type thrillers.

(from BEST 2 worst)

HER. “Her” got the Golden Globe award for screenplay, it deserved it and many, many more.

Joaquin Phoenix’s brilliance and Scarlett Johansson as the voice in his computer make an unsettling and endlessly fascinating team. Amy Adams plays exactly the opposite role from her American Hustle babe and is still great. It may unnerve some folks because it hits closer to home than is comfortable…it’s one of the most original films of the decade, go see it.

THE WOLF OF WALL STREET. I have to say that finally, finally, finally Leonardo Di Caprio and Martin Scorsese paired tocreate a superb and excellent film that fully utilizes their talents. Di Caprio proves that his brief moments in earlier films was no accident…he is awesome in this lewd, vulgar, cocaine extravaganza. Based on the book by the films supreme con artist hero, you’ll sit on the edge of your seat for the full three plus hours. It’s what we all believed goes on behind Wall Street’s doors and even more than that.The action never stops and it is as completely breathtaking in every sense of the word. Go see it, unless you have scruples or a vestige of decency or get jealous easily.

THE AMERICAN HUSTLE. Clever, smart, twisted, greatly acted, and even more clever. What more can you ask from a film? Seeing Amy Adams as a very sexy babe is a long ways from her princess role in Enchanted. Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner and even Robert DeNiro keep the level of who’s conning whom at a fever and funny pitch. It’s a circus version of the real ABSCAM scandal that took down a bunch of politicians. I really meant the word clever. See it asap.

12 YEARS A SLAVE. This film has received dozens of nominations for Awards, and well deserved. It’s a hard hitting, brutal, honest, surprising film. It is also beautifully acted, well cast, and a film you won’t forget for a very long time. Chiwetel Ejiofor is a magnificient actor and carries the film. Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, and Paul Giamatti do good jobs but it’s Ejiofor you’ll think about a lot. It’s a true story written by the central character in the pre-civil war days. Just see this film…now.

NEBRASKA. Bruce Dern plays an almost 80 year old geezer who gets suckered by a million dollar Publishers Warehouse type con and goes on this father/son road movie through Nebraska to collect it. It’s funny at times but it’s also mean, ageist, and cruel. Alexander Payne makes films like that. Dern plays a character named Woody Grant, that’s Grant Wood spelled differently. See it but be prepared.

INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS. Llewyn is pronounced “Lou-enn” and is the Coen Brothers newest creation. F. Murray Abraham, John Goodman, Carey Milligan, and Justin Timberlake are part of the cast, the lead is Oscar Isaac and they do magnificient acting jobs. If you know or care about the 1961 New York and Chicago folk music scene and specifically about Dave Van Ronk you’ll love this film. It’s not as crazy or funny as Oh Brother, Where Art Thou. The plot ambles as much as the folk singer guitarist lead character and the plot is as pointless as his life seems to be. You’ll get out of the film exactly as much as you put into it.

PHILOMENA. I saw this beautifully touching film again a few weeks ago just to make sure it was/is that good…it is. Judi Dench is never less than wonderful in her wide ranging roles. How she pulls off this true story of a human, less than brilliant mother looking for her orphaned son is magnificient. In case you wonder…Steve Coogan does NOT turn out to be her son. Go see it asap.

DALLAS BUYERS CLUB. No doubt about it Mathew McConaughey stars in and steals most, but not all of this film. What’s odd is that I ended up thinking more about and reacting to Jared Leto’s superb job inplaying the transvestite role. Jennifer Garner and Steve Zahn are perfect in their roles too. It’s a fine film, but it is such a tour de force , so completely laid out, so perfectly designed that I never “got into” the film. It’s a spectacle, so in your face, no subtlety. And it’s an award winner for sure.

AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY. It’s an over the top version of the stage play and deals with so much nastiness, hatred, jealousy, fear and miserable people that you’ll leave the theatre feeling a lot better about your own life…whatever it is!!! Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts battle it out for Queen of Suffering, and the rest of the cast is perfect. See it only if you like great, melodramatic, films.

LONE SURVIVOR. It’s actually an old time “War Movie” only it’s based on fact and a book all about Navy Seals fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Mark Wahlberg financed it and is the Lone Survivor. I kept thinking of John Wayne in the Sands of Iwo Jima (1949). It’s an excellent war movie, if you like them.

HUNGER GAMES; CATCHING FIRE. Did you ever arrive late for something and then wonder what’s been going on before you got there? That’s how I felt about Hunger Games Catching Fire. I did see Hunger Games, the first one and it was exciting but I didn’t memorize or even remember much of it. So go warned about this sequel. Who are their friends, who will kill you…and more importantly WHY the killing?… are some questions this epic leaves you with. It’s exciting and sci-fi scenic, but I couldn’t get into it…or care much. Yes, Jennifer Lawrence is a fine actress, even in this.

THE HOBBIT: The desolation of Smaug.. Seeing This part 2 of The Hobbit the same weekend I saw The Wizard of OZ in 3D and the Saving Disney film made the Hobbits a very poor comparison to The Oz Munchkins or Snow Whites Seven Dwarves. Those charecters became icons, legends and part of our history. The Hobbits, not so much. elves, dwarves and Hobbits, no comparison. Want to bet that any of The Hobbit films aren’t remembered and revered like Wizard of Oz? Then there’s J.R.R. Tolkien’s story line of a Gold ring, a vast fortune guarded by a dragon, and the music….this film sure owes a lot to Richard Wagner and his 4 Ring Operas. Sure Benedict Cumberbatch is in it, he’s Smaug the nasty dragon, but you won’t recognize him. Don’t expect any charm, trickyness, or inventiveness if you do go. Expect instead lots of blood, rolling ,chopped off heads and lengthy amounts of fights. Dwarves vs. elves vs. Hobbits…why?

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 January 21 the Sentinel’s Street Smarts traffic columnist Ramona Turner tells us backstories about safety, etc. She’s followed by John Malkin and the threat of License Plate scanners that the police want to bring in. January 28 has attorney and activist Bob Taren discussing 2014 predictions on our local issues. Then Linda Burman Hall gives details on the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival’s 2014 season. February 4 we have Dr. Larry de Ghetaldi president of Palo Alto Medical Foundation of Santa Cruz telling us about PAMF and local plans. 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. “Lots of people go mad in January. Not as many as in May, of course. Nor June. But January is your third most common month for madness”, Karen Joy Fowler.
“January, month of empty pockets! let us endure this evil month, anxious as a theatrical producer’s forehead”, Sidonie Gabrielle Colette. “January is the garbage can of movies in America, directly after all the Oscar contenders have been out”, Michael Caine


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Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.

Posted in Weekly Articles | Comments Off on January 22 – 28, 2014

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