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Feb 28th
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Cover Stories

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Full Stream Ahead

Full Stream Ahead

It was launched in Scotts Valley, went nuclear and is now one of the most successful companies in America. The Netflix story.

At a glance, it doesn’t look like much. It’s red, square and fits neatly between your bills in the mailbox. But for Netflix founder and Santa Cruz resident Reed Hastings, his now-famous red envelope represents something more: A revolution in the way America watches movies.

What began as a small business in Scotts Valley 13 years ago has become the world’s largest subscription service streaming movies and television shows on the Internet and mailing DVDs. According to its website, Netflix members add 2 million movies to their Queues every day. With more than 15 million members as of June 2010, paying $8.99 a month to instantly watch movies online or have them delivered to their homes, the company has rapidly become a force to be reckoned with.

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Fall Home & Garden

Fall Home & Garden

Get growing! Our annual Fall Home & Garden issue tills the creative soil of locals—on the farm, in the garden, in the living room, and beyond.
Inside:
Love Them Apples 
TerraGnoma Time
Madison Interiors
Get Baked: Solar Ovens
Feng Shui It
Taking Gardening to New Heights
You, Your Garden, Your Food
Seven Tips for Your Fall Garden
Greenspacing
Seven Household Tips for Fall

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esalen

esalen

Esalen Institute in Big Sur is a portal of progressive thought, education, healing, and more. A look inside the haven that attracted some of history’s most adventurous thinkers.

Commas, apostrophes and periods.  I couldn’t stop thinking about them. They sat there, a haunting trinity of punctuation, lounging on a wicked conveyor belt in my mind. A conveyor belt that seemed only to be increasing in speed.

Commas, apostrophes and periods.

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Everything’s ZEN

Everything’s ZEN

Long before Umi was a Zen master in the Santa Cruz Mountains, he was a seafaring rock radio pioneer who riled the establishment and ushered in the British Invasion. In this spirited interview, he shares tales of his colorful journey and sheds light on the nature of Zen.
As I approach the end of the long driveway on Empire Grade that leads to Stillpoint Zen Community, Pink Floyd’s “One of These Days” is blaring from the nearest building. With its relentless, menacing bass line and its maniacal, howling pedal steel guitar, it’s a far cry from the soft sound of bells and wind chimes you might expect to hear at a spiritual center in the Santa Cruz Mountains. But taken in context, it’s not an unfitting welcome: From 1964 to 1968, Stillpoint’s focal figure, now known to the members of his community as Enlightened Master Umi, served as DJ and program director for Britain’s first offshore pirate radio station, Radio Caroline. During those years, the station’s crew sailed the English Coast, defying the establishment by broadcasting the rock & roll music of the day. In so doing, they played a key role in sparking the British Invasion and bringing color and life force to a staid, button-down society. Their exploits are echoed—albeit in highly sensationalized form—in the film Pirate Radio, currently on the New Releases shelves of video stores.

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Journeys with Geneen

Journeys with GeneenSpiritual Feast

Former Cruzan and best-selling author Geneen Roth opens up about food, life, God and the legion of emotions that can illuminate our deepest held beliefs


When you take your pulse, you know you’re alive. But are you really “living?” If Geneen Roth were asking that question, she’d no doubt add: How are you really living?

 

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I Gotta Feeling

I Gotta Feeling

I Can't Get It Out of My Head.
When your internal DJ won’t stop playing an infuriatingly catchy song, you’ve got yourself an earworm. Our intrepid reporter dissects the tunes that drive us insane—in the membrane.
You know what's a shitty song? “Animal” by Neon Trees. This tune sucks like it’s trying to inhale a balloon through a straw. It sucks with the wild, furious abandon of a desperate addict trying to use a flashlight as a crack pipe. So why has some sick, self-persecuting part of my psyche been playing it over and over since the moment I woke up this morning?

What we have here is an earworm: a piece of music that burrows into the mind and refuses to leave. An earworm might take the form of a hit song of the present day, or it could be some piece of pop culture gunk that got lodged in the folds of your brain 20 years ago. TV commercials are among the worst offenders: Online forum users show great disgust for a tribal chant addressed to an anonymous figure in possession of a Kit-Kat bar, and a musical testimony to the deliciousness of the baby back ribs at Chili’s seems to be the object of almost universal contempt.

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Garbage Patch Kids

Garbage    Patch  Kids

Santa Cruz nonprofit The Clean Oceans Project has big hopes for cleaning up trash from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

The world’s largest landfill is an accidental one.

Dubbed The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, it stretches across the Northern Pacific Ocean about half way between Hawaii and the San Francisco Bay Area. Depending on whom you ask, its estimated bulk ranges from the size of Texas to bigger than the continental United States, and can reach depths of 100 feet.

 

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It Takes A Tribe: STS9

It Takes A Tribe: STS9From instrumental music to activism, STS9 makes big things happen. A look back at the band’s decade in Santa Cruz and its latest surprising feats.
When members of STS9 (Sound Tribe Sector 9) shared a condemned house in Watsonville at the start of the millennium, the idea of raising money to build a home for anyone else was pretty unfathomable. “It was literally people living in sheds and shacks around this one house,” keyboardist David Phipps laughs. “Those were the last of our glory days living hand to mouth.” Since then, the band’s incandescent mesh of electronica-meets-jam band dexterity (self-described as “post-rock dance music”) has spread like a virus on the Internet and across international stages.

But there’s a whole lotta musicians out there who find success for sounding good. It’s whether or not they have anything to say that is another story.
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Fall Fashion Trends

Fall Fashion Trends

The Season’s New Looks Are Brought To Santa Cruz

Fashion Editor’s note: This year’s Fashion Issue takes a close look at the trends and personal interpretations of what fall fashion can do for you. Locals weigh in on the verdict of what’s in and out, and how to maintain a stylish wardrobe as the fall weather creeps in on us. Following this article is a photo spread by local designer-stylist-photographer Alexis Meschi. The multi-talented Meschi blew us away with her powerful images that capture fall fashion in all of its glory. Enjoy.  —Christa Martin

Fashion comes in all shapes and sizes, trends and classics, and oftentimes it’s here to stay, whether you like it or not—think skinny jeans. GT caught up with some of the local people involved in fashion to discover how the fall runway looks will (or won’t) translate to the fashionable residents here in Santa Cruz. What we’ve discovered is encouraging, and, most importantly, we found that the fashionistas amongst us are doing what Santa Cruzans always do—they push the envelope and make a statement that’s unique to them. Incorporating fall fashion into one’s own “look” only furthers the creative expression found by way of what you wear.

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Meet the Bouncers

Meet the Bouncers

Words of wisdom and tales of the trade from the guys who keep  the Bars in Santa Cruz safe
Wherever there’s a crowd of people drinking, there’s bound to be a jackass or two. Much as we might wish we could just hit the “Eject” button and send the rabble-rousers flying, it takes a living, breathing human to get rid of that unwanted guest who’s had one too many. Which, of course, is where bouncers come in. The doorman is a figure who appears throughout history and throughout nature: The Old Testament makes mention of “gatekeepers” whose duty was to keep things copasetic at the Levitical Temple, and even certain species of ants have their own peacekeepers whose duty is to chuck out unwelcome parties. Clearly, this is an essential service, but few people have the stones for it, let alone the physical power.

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Green Swell

Local surfboard company greens up the industry with an eco-conscious business model

 

Two Fish Bound by a Golden Cord

Until March 20, (Spring Equinox), Earth and her kingdoms (mineral, plant, animal, human) experience the influence of Pisces, sign of the World Savior. Whereas the task of Aquarius is as world server, the Pisces task is saving the world—tasks given to the two fishes. Pisces never really enters matter, and as the last sign of the zodiac includes all the signs. During Pisces, having gathered all the gifts of the previous 11 signs, it is a good time to prepare for new initiating plans when Aries (sign of beginnings) begins. No wonder Pisces, like Scorpio, is so difficult (both are ruled by Pluto, planet of death, new life, regeneration, transformations). Both signs (with Scorpio drowning in dark and deep waters) find life on Earth a hardship, disorienting (from the spiritual perspective), at times feeling betrayed. Life is a paradox, especially for Pisces. Each zodiacal sign represents and distributes a different phase and facet (12) of the Soul’s diamond light, Pisces is the “Light of Life itself, ending forever the darkness of matter.” It takes two fish to complete this work (creating eventually an extraordinary human being). One fish turned toward the material world (in order to understand matter), the other fish toward the heavenly world. Around the two fish is a silvery cord binding them together. The two fish are forever bound until all of humanity is redeemed (lifted up into the Light). This is the dedication of all world saviors (Buddha, Christ, the NGWS). Thus the sacrifice and suffering experienced by Pisces. Knowing these things about Pisces, let us help them all we can. Sometimes all of humanity is Pisces.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Seal Change

Celtic selkie lore comes alive in dazzling ‘Song of the Sea’
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Teresa’s Gourmet Foods

New owners for Santa Cruz’s leading local salsa company

 

What defines a good dive bar?

It’s slightly dirty, and they serve cheap drinks. Stella Celeste, Santa Cruz, Barrista

 

Picchetti Winery

After enjoying its contents, I couldn’t throw away the empty bottle of Picchetti Winery’s Red Table Wine.

 

Happy Birthday, Manny

Manuel’s turns 50, farmers market steel head pairs with Pinot, and a Birichino Malvasia