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Apr 26th
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A&E

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Northwestern Gothic

Northwestern Gothic

Horse Feathers’ Justin Ringle on how unemployment, gloomy weather and Gothic lit minimized his sound
We all know Portland is overrun with them. You know the crowd I’m talking about: the over-educated, rarely employed, too-cool youth on the cusp of computer culture and an artistic aesthetic. There’s no doubt about it, there are just too many graphic designers in Oregon.

“I came to find out when you move to Portland, Ore., it’s kind of a shocking realization that if there’s any creative field then there is a surplus of unemployed people,” explains Horse Feathers’ frontman Justin Ringle. “There are more graphic designers in Portland than there are musicians, almost, so it was kind of a rough transition. I couldn’t find a job in that field, so, low and behold, I end up touring around in a van most of the year.”

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Inner Fashionista

Inner Fashionista

Local indie fashionista Domini creates custom clothing to embrace your body as well as your beliefs
Your body is fine—it’s the cut that isn’t. These are the words of Domini, a local fashion designer and ergonomic clothing architect who creates custom clothes designed to fit each individual’s body, lifestyle and beliefs.

“People come to me saying, ‘I have to lose five pounds so I can fit in this outfit,’” says Domini. “There’s something wrong with the cut—it’s not you. Body types are different. Manufacturers will cut to a median that everyone tries to fit into. I’m trying to get people into the mindset that if something doesn’t work, they can change it—rather than people thinking they have to change themselves.”

A recent transplant from the San Francisco Bay Area, where she was one of the front-runners of the underground “indie fashionista” movement, Domini currently works out of her design studio in Sand City and is expanding into the Santa Cruz area.

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Going Nuts

Going Nuts

Bob von Elgg’s mural magnifies the little things in life
At first glance, Bob von Elgg’s nearly 18-foot mural is a tad daunting. Titled “Abundance for All: Raining Acorns,” the painting, which now graces the Mission St. facing wall of Safeway on the Westside, looks exactly as it sounds.

Colossal acorns falling from the sky may seem like an awfully random subject for a piece of art, but when the 52-year-old graphic designer and three other members of the city’s mural artist registry were invited to develop proposals on the theme of food and history in Santa Cruz, he could not think of a better muse.

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SCTV

SCTV

New ‘Santa Cruz Live’ puts the spotlight on our flourishing local music scene.
For many people, the name “Austin, Texas” instantly conjures images of a rich, thriving music scene. Its reputation as a music Mecca is not unwarranted: The city boasts the most music venues per capita in the nation. Documenting some of its finest musical moments is Austin City Limits, the nation’s longest-running concert music show in the history of American television. Having first gone into broadcast in 1976, ACL has been named a Rock and Roll Landmark by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and is the only TV program that has ever received the National Medal of Arts.

If local country/Americana vocalist Ginny Mitchell has her way, Santa Cruz will soon be considered a sister city to Austin, and this town’s live music scene will provide just as much a lure for visitors as do the beach, redwoods, Boardwalk and famously pleasant climate. “We’re sitting on a hotbed of music,” the musician states. “Santa Cruz is poised just like Austin, in terms of how many musicians per square foot. And every night there are so many wonderful things, it’s hard to go out and see everything—all kinds of music, no matter what it is.”

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The Poems of Priscilla Becker

The Poems of Priscilla Becker

Editor’s notes: In this week’s Poetry Corner, we feature the work of Priscilla Becker’s second book of poems, “Stories That Listen,” which is newly out from Four Way Books. Her poems have appeared in Fence, Open City, The Paris Review, Boston Review, American Poetry Review, Verse, and The Swallow Anthology of New American Poets, among others. She teaches poetry at Pratt Institute, Columbia University, and in her apartment.

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Crafty Chick

Crafty Chick

In one hell of a funny page-turner, Amy Sedaris unveils ‘crafts for poor people’ and oh, so much more. Plus: She hits Bookshop Santa Cruz—again.
"Hello. Good for you, reading the flap!” Amy Sedaris writes in her savage new crafts book “Simple Times: Crafts For Poor People.” “This suggests you are not an impulsive buyer,” she goes on. “You clearly are the type of person who would like more information about your prospective purchase before you throw down your hard-earned cash. Okay, but guess what? Do you have any clue how much time it will take to move this stack of books if every potential buyer is going to insist on being an annoyingly responsible shopper?!”

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All of a Sudden

All of a Sudden

Local artist-writer Coeleen Kiebert uncovers the mysterious— and not so mysterious—creative process in a powerful new book
he accomplished sculptor Coeleen Kiebert has written a truly original and exceptionally helpful book about a fascinating subject, the subject of creativity.  The book is called “All of a Sudden: The Creative Process.” In her acknowledgements, Kiebert writes: “This book is the outcome of the willingness of many to engage with me in the process of exploring, thinking about, and expressing the creative process.” It is a crowning achievement and a great example of the very creative process that is the subject of her book.

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The Doobie Brothers

The Doobie Brothers

Burning questions for the crown princes of cannabis, Cheech & Chong
On the second day of November, throngs of degenerate California voters will bombard the polling booths with the sickly smells of sweat, sage and amber resin. Their agenda is to decriminalize marijuana, a deadly and addictive substance whose users display an unhealthy tolerance for improvised music, a contemptible inability to untangle earphone cords and a fondness for nonsensical activities such as laughing at piggy banks and writing haiku about custard.

Three days after the polls, Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong—marijuana’s most recognizable poster boys—will perform drug-oriented skits and crude tribal chants at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. If Proposition 19 passes, Cheech & Chong’s Nov. 5 event will be the comedy duo’s first post-prohibition show. How sadly fitting that it should take place in a touchy-feely California hippie haven whose residents unrepentantly embrace yoga, same-sex marriage, sushi, affirmative action, surfing, acupuncture and Zen alarm clocks. From there, it’s just a matter of time until the world devolves into one big Bonnaroo Festival, and the marijuana addicts bury our culture’s last remaining values under a mountain of tortilla chips and depravity.

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Fan-tastic

Fan-tastic

Ackerman monster movie collection preserved in Santa Cruzans' new book
It was a Paradise on earth for monster movie fans. The 18-room house near Griffith Park in Los Angeles was home to some 300,000 items of memorabilia. In addition to posters, lobby cards, stills, props, toys, costumes, masks, and models from 80 years of science-fiction/fantasy/horror movies (inluding Bela Lugosi's cape and signet ring from Dracula and the dinosaur models from the original King Kong), there  were complete print runs of vintage sci-fi pulp mags like “Weird Tales” and “Amazing Stories,” galleries of cover art, and tens of thousands of hardcover and paperback genre books from around the world. It was an astonishing collection amassed over a lifetime by Forrest J. Ackerman, writer, literary agent, venerated editor of “Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine,” and lifelong booster for the cinema of the fantastic.

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Self-knowledge: A Light in Dark Times

Self-knowledge: A Light in Dark Times

Buckle up, because Author Michael Meade wants people to face fate and find destiny
I don’t take orders,” confesses Michael Meade with the hint of a story to follow. In 1964, at the age of 20, Meade was drafted into the United States military and quickly realized that things weren’t going to go very well. He challenged orders, was sent to military prison in Panama and refused to eat for more than 30 days, non-cooperating with the violence of authority.  It became another experience in which he learned a lot about his authentic self. Meade is now a well-established mythologist, storyteller and author and will be in Santa Cruz on Thursday, Oct. 21 for a presentation called “Facing Fate/Finding a Destiny”at First Congregational Church. Good Times recently spoke with Meade about his work with at-risk youth, prisoners and war veterans and his latest book “Fate and Destiny: The Two Agreements of the Soul” (Mosaic, 2010). Meade is founder of the Seattle-based nonprofit Mosaic Multicultural Foundation (mosaicvoices.org).

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We Can Rebuild You

A look back at how downtown Santa Cruz recovered from the 1989 earthquake

 

International Earth Day—Mother Earth Day

Every April 22, humanity celebrates International Mother Earth Day and Earth Day. As more than a billion people participate in Earth Day activities every year, Earth Day has become the world’s largest civic observance. The massive concern to build right relations between humanity and the living being we call Earth is evidence of humanity’s love of the Mother. In 2009, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed April 22 International Mother Earth Day, with a significant resolution affirming “the interdependence existing among human beings, other living species (the kingdoms—mineral, plant, animal and human) and the planet itself, the Earth which we all inhabit.” The Earth is our home. Celebrating Earth Day helps us define new emerging processes (economic, social, political) focused on the well-being of the kingdoms. Through these, humanity seeks to raise the quality of life, foster equality and begin to establish right relations with the Earth. We dedicate ourselves to bringing forth balance and a relationship of harmony with all of nature. Learn about planting a billion trees (the Canopy Project); participate in 1.5 billion acts of green. Disassociation (toward Earth) is no longer viable. We lose our connection to life itself. Participation is viable—an anchor, refuge and service for all of life on Earth. Visit earthday.org; harmonywithnatureun.org; and un.org/en/events/motherearthday for more information. From Farmers Almanac, “On Earth Day, enjoy the tonic of fresh air, contact with the soil, companionship with nature! Go barefooted. Walk through woods, find wildflowers and green moss. Remain outside, no matter the weather!” Nature, Earth’s most balanced kingdom, heals us. The New Group of World Servers is preparing for the May 3 Wesak Buddha Taurus solar festival. We prepare through asking for and offering forgiveness. Forgiveness purifies and like nature, heals.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Mission Critical

How reading Lisa Jensen’s reviews taught me to love film
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Oral Fixations

Blown away by a Tuesday night dinner at Oswald

 

What would you like to see a TED talk about?

Hydrogen-gas cars that are coming this summer. Scott Oliver, Santa Cruz, Professor

 

Sarah’s Vineyard

Sarah’s Vineyard of Gilroy is known for crafting fine wines—and one of my all-time favorites is its Chardonnay. But this time, its Viognier has my vote.

 

Munch

East Coast meets West Coast in new meat lover’s paradise