Blog Archives

September 10 – 16, 2013

MISS CALIFORNIA CONTESTANTS ATOP PALOMAR HOTEL. That’s Miss Tulare on the left and Miss Azusa on the right. Obviously it’s 6:14 p.m. and not so obviously it’s June 1963. Newcomers shopuld note that this was the original location of our Town Clock. Also note the two way traffic PLUS curbside parking spaces!!! (Copy date Sept. 9)

photo credit: Covello & Covello Historical photo collection.

Additional information always welcome: email

REPUBLICANS TAKING OVER THE STATE AND SANTA CRUZ!!! The omni-present Don Webber sent this scary article from the September 3 issue of the LA Times. The title is “California Republicans thrive at the local level”. It begins with,”GOP members hold close to half the 2,500 mayoral and City Council seats in the state. It’s at the state level that the party is largely irrelevant”. When you think how Santa Cruz elected Pamela Comstock to our City Council and Bruce McPherson to our County Board of Supervisors, it should cause some kind of concern.

When you read the entire article, and you really should, you’ll see how our Santa Cruz County follows this dangerous path…(from the article) “In the last two statewide election cycles, when Californians voted true to partisan form — bucking the national GOP wave in 2010, siding strongly with Obama in 2012 — Republicans won more local contests than did Democrats, and not just in rural or such traditionally conservative-leaning areas as the Central Valley. More than 75 cities in California have a majority of Democratic voters but Republican-run city councils; the GOP has toeholds in such otherwise blue bastions as Alameda, Los Angeles and SANTA CRUZ counties”. I didn’t have time to check party registrations in the other cities in our County. Anyone have details on those places?? Read it all here…

NEW SANTA CRUZ POLICE CAMERAS. The Santa Cruz Downtown Association’s Chip told me yesterday (Sept. 5th) that the Santa Cruz Police Department now has special license plate cameras. We both agreed that maybe, just maybe, they could photograph the damned loud motorcycle maniacs who remove the mufflers from their bikes and make Pacific Avenue such hell…especially on weekends.

S.S PALO ALTO AERIAL VIDEO BY ARCHER KOCH. Archer Koch used one of little drone quadcopters with cameras and gives us footage of the Concrete Ship. Just beautiful. WE know of course that it’s a reinforced concrete ship that was built in Oakland in 1919…but why is it named The SS Palo Alto? Why Palo Alto?

LOCAL HOTEL NEWS. Gary Patton in his KUSP broadcasts this week announces…There are a couple of significant hotel proposals coming up in Santa Cruz County. First, there is a new proposal for the so-called La Bahia Hotel, in the City of Santa Cruz. The proposal is to demolish the existing 44-unit La Bahia apartment complex and to build a new 165-room hotel. If you want to comment on the Notice of Preparation for the Environmental Impact Report, the comment period ends on September 20th. Second, in the City of Capitola, a Monarch Cove Hotel Project is being proposed. Again, historic structures would be demolished and 32 hotel rooms would replace them on the site. The comment period on the Notice of Preparation for the EIR on this project ends on September 26th“.

SHAKESPEARE SANTA CRUZ…MORE!!! It’ll be years before Santa Cruz gets over the loss of Shakespeare Santa Cruz. But to add to the absolutely odd relationship between the University and SSC…the reason there were no performances inside on UCSC’s Centerstage is because the University was charging SSC too much money to rent the space. Go figure.

SHAKESPEARE SANTA CRUZ…EVEN MORE. Some informative opinions and feedback on UCSC’s David Yager killing of SSC. Feedback from ACT’s artistic director Carey Perloff and a switch in Marco Barricelli’s contract.

ZACH “WHOSE FRIEND IS HE?” FRIEND. Mr. Kess Kaathoven sent this enlightening view of our first opportunity to see which way Supervisor Zach Friend is going to vote on development issues.

“On August 27, the Board of Supervisors approved a proposal that weakens the County’s regulations for the Coastal Zone, that sacred area of the County in the California Coastal Commission’s jurisdiction. The amendments weaken coastal protections, and make it easier to develop without a coastal permit, and those amendments reduce protections for Seacliff Village. Zach Friend, who represents Aptos, made the motion to weaken the regulations despite the fact that his constituents care deeply about their coastline.

In fact, when three of the Supervisors (Leopold, Caput and McPherson) voted the correct way to eliminate one of the provisions that exempted all residential additions no matter the size from coastal regulation, Friend voted “no.” This is the first foray of Mr. Friend into a real land use decision. Not only did he vote the wrong way on coastal protection (including protections for Seacliff Village, a part of his district), but he made the motion to weaken coastal protections. He stated at the hearing that since staff made the recommendation, he trusts that staff has done its job. This means that whatever staff wants they can have. He won’t think for himself or carefully review +whether staff is actually making a sound recommendation. So look out Aptos residents. If this is any indication on the Rancho Del Mar mega-Safeway store, he will defer to staff and will not be a lead for his constituents to broker a deal the community can support. One can only hope there are not many more pressing land use and environmental issues during his tenure. But, the Planning Department has a number of zoning code “reform” initiatives moving forward. Friend may well be Aptos’ enemy, not its champion”. Kess Kaathoven.


SAVE APTOS. Aptos Local Economies (A.L.E.) is a growing organization of Aptos Citizens working hard to convince Zach Friend and the community, of the dangers in allowing Safeway to build their Mega-store at Rancho Del Mar. Read this link and see their many concerns.

ELERICK’S INPUT. More on Rancho Del Mar from Paul Elerick

Aptos History emerges from a garage cleaning project

Buried deep in my garage “stuff”, I uncovered a January 1974 copy of the Santa Cruz Times, the weekly back in the day. Appropriate to today’s Aptos, it featured the headline, “Aptos Action & the land war”. Along with providing an excellent history of Aptos and how it looked in 1974, the big issue of the day was GROWTH! In this case it was a chain store: Monte Mart, a Monterey – based food and discount store. They began the push into Aptos by soliciting support of various improvement organizations as early as 1972. This managed to incite those of us who didn’t want a regional shopping center in place of Rancho Del Mar that would cater to shoppers driving up and down Highway 1 and push out local businesses.

Monte Mart people based their pushiness on a projection by the County that Aptos would have 15,000 residents by 1984. (The county was way off; Aptos population was recorded at 6,220 in 2010. Somebody should reprint the entire article from the 1974 issue of the Santa Cruz Times; it is a fantastic look into our past. The article could also include updates on what really happened to Monte Mart (it went away) and how Rancho Del Mar was developed into community based businesses.

One could replace the name “Monte Mart” with “Safeway”, the company has set their sights on turning Rancho Del Mar into a regional shopping center. Could history possible repeat itself by sending Safeway packing the same way Aptos residents did with Monte Mart back in the 1970’s? We should be able to learn something after 40 years, i.e., that we don’t have to give in to something we don’t’ want. (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).

PATTON’S PROGRAM. Gary talks about fracking and our board of Supervisors banning it. He adds news too on Aptos High School’s soccer field and the lack of permits. The Coastal Commission’s webcast facilities and this week’s meeting in Eureka deals with affordable housing. He explains L.U.L.U. (Locally Undesirable Land Use). A garbage dump is a LULU, and he carries on from there. Read all of above at Gary’s KUSP Land Use scripts (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”

VINTAGE DE CINZO. DeCinzo resurects «the Holy See» scroll down a page or three.

EAGANS DEEP COVER.See below for Doctor Eagan’s diagnoses of our real health problems…

LISA JENSEN LINKS. “This week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (, get smart with Jewel Theatre Company’s ambitious new production of Tom Stoppard’s witty, literate Arcadia, and get engrossed by Audrey Tatou as a desperate housewife of the 1920s in Thèrése. “Lisa has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975. Lisa Jensen has been writing film reviews and a column for Good Times since 1975.


ADORE. Watch the trailer. Some critics are calling it trash. What do they know??

ADORE. If you liked Sophocles “Oedipus” you’ll love Adore twice as much. A more “fun” title would have been “The Motherfuckers” but it wouldn’t go over too well in some areas. Naomi Watts and Robin Wright are now and always have been, superb actors, and whoever it is that play their two sons are almost as good, but you won’t remember their names either. I wasn’t fooling about Oedipus. You’re forced to at least think about it for most of this film. Not as many laughs as Blue Jasmine but deeper and better.

PASSION. Brian DePalma has Rachel McAdams and Noomi Rapace playing two cuthroat women in international corporate business. It’s neither too serious nor quite funny enough…so you can’t ever get the gist of it. It’s mostly Hollywood type acting set in Berlin and elsewhere. Don’t bother going.

RIDDICK. Vin Diesel is back whether you like it or not. He’s created his own, what you might call “acting style’. And like the earlier two Riddick films it’s got cheap special effects, miserable monsters BUT it’s exactly what Riddick fans want. Only see it IF you liked the first two Riddick jobs.

AUSTENLAND. I like Jane Austen books, and I’ve liked most of the films made from her books, and I walked out after the first ten minutes of this cheap and ignorant comedy. There is not one second of British humor in it, it’s gross, poorly directed and a complete waste of everybody’s time. It’s about an American Austen fan who saves her money, goes to England and visits the hokey schlocky Austenland. Don’t even rent it.


SPECTACULAR NOW.Remember Shailene Woodley? Well, not by name- nobody does, but she was George Clooney’s fantastic teen age daughter in The Descendents. She’s back as anolder teenager in this serious, beautifully directed, thoughtful movie. There’s a bunch of teen- age- angst movies lately and I like them, mostly. We’ve all been there and done that, and this movie will touch all of your rough memories.

CLOSED CIRCUIT. This movie is almost like part of PBS’s “Silk” series, and that’s good. Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall act as two London lawyers and there’s a lot about British law problems. The main deal is a terrorist action and who’s secretly involved. You really don’t need to see this one…there are plot holes, and doesn’t it seem like many movies have plot holes recently?? Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 44. R. Tomatoes gave Getaway a 2!!!

GRANDMASTER. I took about three years of film classes in Asian film from Earl Jackson at UCSC. He taught us a lot about Asian Film. Then he moved to Korea to teach Koreans about film!! He taught us how and why Wong Kar Wai the director of Grandmaster, is a great and exciting film maker. Wong Kar Wai directed Chungking Express, In The Mood For Love, Ashes of Time, and more masterpieces. Grandmaster is a dramatic bio-pic of Ip Man, an iconic martial arts teacher. It’s historical, perfectly photographed, grandly acted, confusing, and disapointing…unless you like any and all of Wong Kar Wai’s films, and I do.

THE WORLDS END. This is part of a genre-parody- comedy- trilogy (which I didn’t know or remember) Shaun of the Dead, and Hot Fuzz being the other two movies. These guys (Simon Pegg is one of them) attempt to drink one beer at each of a bunch of pubs. The World’s End is the name of the last pub. Shaun of The Dead parodyied zombie films and this one parodys another genre. It’s as if you were watching Mary Poppins and all of a sudden Bruce Willis comes in and shoots everybody. I sure wouldn’t see it twice.

GETAWAY.This Ethan Hawke action car chase movie is and was a complete waste of time for everybody involved in making it….so don’t you waste your time in seeing it. The acting is literally non-existent. The car chase (about 95% of the movie) is poorly filmed, the plot is impossible and you’ll hate yourself if you do go..

BLUE JASMINE. Don’t expect to see much of San Francisco in this one, even though Woody loves “The City”, he didn’t show us much of it onscreen. Cate Blanchett goes beyond acting…she digs deeper into her character than we’ve ever seen onscreen. She is simply brilliant. Alec Baldwin is perfect as a sleek, snaky “Mr. Smarmy” type. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry. You’ll fall all over in your praise of Mr. W. Allen and his “on again-off again” directing technique. See this movie just as soon as you posspbly can.

ELYSIUM. Matt Damon , through some Hollywood miracle is becoming a much better actor than anyone thought possible. Jodi Foster is always a magnetic screen attraction except that her “accent” in this sci-fi film gets way out of her control. It’s about the year 2159 and how all the rich and perfect people live on a “2001” type wheel circling in outer space. The poor people who live on a savaged and depleted earth suffer a lot just like Bladerunner stuff. Earthman Matt Damon works hard to save the earth people. IF (that big word again) IF you like sci-fi films this is a fairly good one. An overused plot but effective…but only on a big screen.

THE BUTLER. A very odd film. At moments it’s moving, deep, and influential. But Oprah Winfrey will always be Oprah, and you won’t forget that it’s Oprah being Mrs. Butler. Forest Whitaker has never been my favorite actor and he’s worse in this feel-almost-good flick. Robin Williams playing Eisenhower? John Cusack as Nixon? Alan Rickman as Ronnie Reagan? But Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan is terrific!!And nope, you never get to see who would have played Obama. Wait a couple of weeks and rent it.

THERESE & AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS. This is just an advance suggestion to plan on seeing both of these fine films. We got to see them ahead of time. Audrey Tautou stars in Therese and has grown way past her “Amelie” cutesy muck. More later.

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. September 10 has Tina Brown and Rose Sellery giving details on their Fashion Art Extravaganza 9/28, followed by Jeff Sanford talking about his Cartoon Jazz Orchestra’s newest release. Thom Zajac discusses the 29 years of Comic News on Sept. 17. Patricia Matejcek returns that same night to talk about South Couny issues. Author, poet, retired Cabrilho College professor Don Young also returns on September 24 to talk about his two new collections. Linda Hoeger- Thompson talks about Companion for Life programs and services after Don Young. On October 1st Peggy Dolgenos co-owner/director of Cruzio will tell us what’s new in the internet world. Cathy Pickerrell from the Santa Cruz Chamber Players opens the program on October 8.Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening. Email me always at with program ideas.

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, 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. 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. “I want to say something so embarrassing about September that even the leaves start blushing and turning red”, Jarod Kintz. “I’ll be damned if I’ll love just to love—there’s got to be more to it than that”, Humphrey Bogart. “Standing on a Street corner waiting for no one is Power”, Gregory Corso.


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Deep Cover by Tim Eagan.

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