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Sep 01st
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Cover Stories

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Wicked Waters

Wicked Waters

Filmdom’s titan of the unconventional is ready to expose himself to Santa Cruz audiences. We tell you why


A few weeks ago I was a John Waters virgin—pure, untouched, unscathed by the 59-year-old filmmaker. But then we met one day. In one hand I gripped a thin pencil, its eraser head erect, its lead point ready to be unleashed. In the other hand I held firmly on to a giant cup of green tea. I was nervous. I was about to be deflowered by John Waters.

I’d never imagined that sex with John Waters would be like this: Two people thrashing around on a bed, blood spewing, with a chicken between them as they—to use a Johnny vernacular—“fucked.”

Thankfully, my only interaction here was as a voyeur, a bystander watching bestiality on screen—just one sexual moment of many, featured in Waters’ controversial, groundbreaking if not highly praised and criticized 1972 film, Pink Flamingos. I figured I’d get the full service experience with Waters right off the bat. I’d start with his hardest ride.

 

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Miracle Workers

Miracle Workers

Giving is the new receiving ... again. Our four spotlighted Community Fund nonprofits, and how they make Santa Cruz County a better place with your help.

 

 

 

 

 


The illusion tells you: ‘times are tough.’ But the reality is, without local contributions to the area’s nonprofits, the ‘times’ could be worse.

 

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Green Machines

Green Machines

Local production company revs up the green movement

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Bertha is sexy. She’s got voluptuous curves, smooth skin, and trust me, the guys gawk when she takes to the streets. And that’s the point. Big Bertha and her “son,” the Green Machine (also interchangeably called the Green Monster) aren’t what you’d expect—literally. Bertha is a purple hot rod made from a fire engine. Her creative offspring  is a hot rod created from a 1952 Peterbilt semi-truck tractor. The two vehicles were created from and run on green materials, making them not only leaders in the green industry, but just plain titillating to look at and drive around in.

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Election Guide 2008

Election Guide 2008

The most important and interesting presidential race of our time, dozens of local candidates and issues ... but don't forget those propositions! Good Times gives you a clear look at the 12 choices facing all California voters on this enormous ballot.

Vote No on Proposition 8

Thirty years ago, The Briggs Initiative (California Prop 6) hit the state ballot, creating a ripple effect in the human rights movement. The proposition, spearheaded by conservative state legislator John Briggs, who was based in Orange County, would have banned gays and lesbians from working in the state school

 

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New Blood

New Blood

Santa Cruz Next is on a roll. But can it lure in enough young people to become more prominent in local civic life?

On a warm Tuesday night in Santa Cruz, as the season turns to autumn, dozens of Santa Cruzans are gathered at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center to watch Barack Obama and John McCain bicker with each other and interrupt moderator Tom Brokaw in the second televised presidential debate.

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Scene Stealer

Scene Stealer

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lanford Wilson ignites the UCSC summer stage with ‘Burn This’.  Plus: We raise the curtain and look inside Shakespeare Santa Cruz’s boldest season yet.

Sometimes, it’s the story behind the story that’s just as interesting as the story—maybe even more.

It’s hard not to think that that is the case after walking away from a conversation with Lanford Wilson. The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright is in the spotlight locally this summer, thanks to Shakespeare Santa Cruz. Wilson’s soul-stirring play, “Burn This,” is one of the two contemporary works unfolding in this year’s festival—the other is “Bach at Leipzig” by Itamar Moses. Presented in repertory with William Shakespeare’s “Romeo & Juliet” and “All’s Well That Ends Well,” “Burn This” not only offers audiences an opportunity to connect with a brilliant work, but also to the living playwright responsible for creating it.

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The Online Identity Crisis

The Online Identity Crisis

One man’s cyber trip into the land of Facebook spawns a slew of existential questions

I HATE YOU, FACEBOOK. I CAN’T QUIT— a female student who e-mailed Facebook

I think that understanding that there might not be any difference between what people are doing online and offline is something really important— Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook

In the past few months I seem to have either lost or gained a digital identity. Like puberty and its ensuing formative years, I now find myself wondering who I am—digitally, and, of course, punctuated by a tad bit of confusion about being-ness. The question of “who am I?” is not so easily explained on a couch, or even the well-touted History of Consciousness program at UC Santa Cruz, much less helped along by what has been variously called Social Networking Websites.

 

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The Film Issue 08, SoWat TV

The Film Issue 08, SoWat TV

Chip & Jeff Dinnell/SoWat TV

Who needs SNL when we have two local guys with a serious manbrows poking fun at Santa Cruz politics—and more—under the guise of hosting a show about the arts in Santa Cruz County? When it first debuted on Community Television back in 2004, the bi-monthly talk show—and, really some would just call it, plain ol’ bi—known as “SoWat” spotlighted locals making a difference in the arts community. It still does that, but in the course of three years, the popular show has added a number of curious elements. It’s now morphed into a modern day “Late Night with David Letterman” by way of a more youthful—or is it euphemized?—“John Stewart.” Hosts Jeff Dinnell (a local actor with delicious wit) and Chip (an über supporter of local arts) work off each other with such a graceful splash of inventiveness, you can’t but be taken in by their

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LOVE (the new sex)

LOVE (the new sex)

Annie Sprinkle and Elizabeth Stephens head to the altar for the fourth time in one unforgettable—and eco-tinged—performance art wedding

Annie Sprinkle hands me a plate of farm-fresh eggs and sits down at the kitchen table in the rustic Boulder Creek home she shares with her life and art partner Elizabeth Stephens. Sprinkle bites into a piece of whole wheat toast, chews it a few times, looks over at me with calm eyes and says. “Love is the new ‘sex.’”

It’s not your typical breakfast condiment but I take in the verbal seasoning, use my fork to break open the egg yoke on my plate and silently recite the Sprinkle-ism back to myself, each time placing emphases on a different word: Love is the new sex. Love is the new sex. Love is the new sex.

Love is the new … sex.

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The Film Issue 08

The Film Issue 08

Santa Cruzan Robin Janiszeufski Hesson of the documentary Surfin’ Thru, leads the way in our annual film issue, in which we salute the season’s most memorable celluloid players.

Editor's note: GT's annual film issue is loaded with plenty of cinematic fodder to keep you busy for quite some time. Here, we spotlight some of the locals that have been making a difference in the film world at home, beginning with ... Robin Janiszeufski Hesson, The Rising Star. (Read more film stories here.)

We don’t come into the world with a movie script that tells us what we’re supposed to do or how we’re supposed to act. But, the more conscious we become, the deeper we look within ourselves for answers, we do realize we have the extreme pleasure of casting anybody we want to be the main star in the moving picture known as our life. We can take on the lead role, but sometimes, try as we might, our “co-stars” still want to steal the show.

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Mercury Enters Libra

It’s the week of Burning Man, the temporary, intentional, alternative, art-filled community on the playas of Nevada. Mercury, messenger of the Sun, enters Libra this week. Libra is the equalizer, a sign of balance and right human relations. Sometimes with Libra, we can be indecisive and confused while learning how to make balanced and right choices. Sometimes to keep the peace we communicate only what others want to hear. Eventually, we learn how to speak from the heart.

 

Final Cut

Cedar Street Video to close after 10 years at downtown location

 

Banter and Spark

Engaging actors, wry script distinguish lightweight rom-com ‘What If’

 

Back to Silicon Beach

With a new wave of startups, the future of Santa Cruz tech looks more promising than ever
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Himalayan Kitchen

Chef Purna Regmi on the secrets of Nepalese cooking

 

What’s the nicest thing you’ve done for someone this week?

Germany  |  Beekeeper

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

A Cab To Be Coveted

I first tasted Villa del Monte’s 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon at a Fourth of July party, where the hosts had bought a case of it because they love it and didn’t want to run out. It’s one of those wines that will grab you—in the best way—with its full body and rich fruit characteristics.