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Mar 31st
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A&E

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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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Kathy Griffin: Three Ways She Can Save Santa Cruz!

Kathy Griffin: Three Ways She Can Save Santa Cruz!Let’s face it, Santa Cruz could use a few laughs. (Several hundred thousand, actually.) Unemployment is up, jobs seem scarce and those million-dollar homes by the Bay don’t seem to be selling. (Sucks to be rich.) All this should make for great fodder when La Griffin (That’s Kathy for those of you who are too dense to know that the hell I’m talking about …) arrives at the Santa Cruz Civic in all her comedic splendor. Good news: After nabbing some Emmys and loads of national attention spawned by the success of her savage reality TV outing, My Life on the D-List, KG’s celebrity has soared. (I’m certain she’s risen to C-plus at this point. Well, maybe “Enhanced D.”)  Doesn’t matter. Monday night’s show should be a hoot. (Be there bitches!) In the meantime, I probed the nether regions of my brain—not that easy, actually—and found three ways dear Kath can save Santa Cruz from its quirky funk of late.
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Cinema Sushi

Cinema Sushi

Tasty sampling of Pacific cultures in 22nd Pacific Rim Film Festival
Music, food, dance, traditional folkways and eco-politics are spotlighted at this year's Pacific Rim Film Festival. Now in its 22nd year, this popular, annual free film event once again offers viewers a cinematic voyage of discovery around the Pacific Rim of Asia and the Americas. In a program of 18 drama and documentary films, transporting viewers to such diverse locations as Nepal, Bolivia, Korea, New Orleans, the Marianas Islands, and the South Pole, this cinematic sushi bar invites us to sample the exotica of other cultures, while reminding us how much we have in common, despite our cultural differences.

This year's six-day event unspools Friday, Oct. 15, through Wednesday, Oct. 20, at three countywide venues: the Del Mar Theatre, the Rio Theatre, and the Cabrillo College Watsonville Center. All films are presented free to the public, except for the closing-night benefit, and many screenings will be followed by a Q&A session with the filmmaker. Presented by George Ow Family Properties, the festival is dedicated to promoting cross-cultural understanding, in accordance with the longtime PRFF theme: “When Strangers Meet.”

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Don’t Push the River

Don’t Push the River

The human alchemy of Qi Gong
Playing with energy.  This is the idea behind Qi Gong according to Lee Holden, who has studied the ancient Chinese art of movement and meditation for more than 20 years. Holden is a founding director of the Santa Cruz Integrative Medicine and Chi Center and also an acupuncturist.  He will be leading a Qi Gong Intensive Workshop at the Santa Cruz Center on Sunday, Oct. 17.

“Qi means life-force energy,” explains Holden.  “It’s the energy that keeps us alive and that animates our body.  It’s the energy behind thoughts and consciousness and it’s the energy that beats your heart.”  Qi Gong—pronounced “chee gung” and sometimes spelled “Chi Gong”—is used worldwide by some 100 million people. The practice is described by Holden and others as self-healing and is characterized by slow, fluid movements and stretches, deep breathing and the vocalizing of specific sounds that correspond to the body, mind and spirit. 

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A Legacy of Ecstasy and Transformation

A Legacy of Ecstasy and Transformation

UCSC Grateful Dead archivist reveals what’s behind locked doors and how he got there
Deep within an ultra-secret high-security room in UC Santa Cruz’s McHenry Library, Grateful Dead archivist Nicholas Meriwether patrols the inner sanctum of all things Dead—holding off the staggering collection from swallowing him whole.

So what’s behind closed doors?

One wall reveals the original artwork from the back of the band’s fourth studio album, Workingman’s Dead—beautiful charcoal drawings of the original Grateful Dead sextet. Endless boxes full of rare posters, concert tickets and laminates, hundreds of miles of business receipts, every book ever written on or mentioning the Grateful Dead, furniture from the headquarters of the band’s business office in San Rafael. Fans have contributed painted jackets, original blotter art and an army of dancing bears that bulge the seams of a jam-packed chamber that holds only 2 percent of the entire collection.

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The Poems of Douglas McClellan

The Poems of Douglas McClellan

Editor’s note: In this week’s Poetry Corner, we feature the work of Douglas McClellan, who received his master of fine arts degree in Visual Arts in 1950.  He taught art for 37 years at art institutes, colleges and UC Santa Cruz. His art has been widely exhibited including solo shows in Northern and Southern California, and group exhibitions on the East and West Coasts, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.  He started writing poetry seriously at age 70 and has published six slender volumes. He currently alternates between digital collage and poetry. To learn more, visit dougstudio.com. The following poems are from the collection, “Exit Lines (semi official last words from the famous and otherwise).”

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Best of Santa Cruz 2015

In 40 years of publishing, Good Times has seen a lot of “bests.”

 

Spring Triangle: Three Spring Festivals—Aries, Taurus, Gemini

The Spring signs Aries, Taurus and Gemini constitute a triangle of force that sets the template for the nine signs that follow and the template for the entire year (Spring 2015 - Spring 2016) ahead. Aries initiates new ideas, Taurus stabilizes the new thinking of Aries and Gemini takes the initiating stabilized ideas of Aries/Taurus and disperses them to all of humanity. It is in this way that humanity learns new things, with the help of Mercury, the messenger. As Spring unfolds, three elements emerge: the Fire of Aries (initiating new ideas), the Earth of Taurus (anchoring the ideas of God through Mercury) and the Air of communicating Gemini. These three signs/elements are the Three Spring Festivals. They are the “triangle of force” forming the template (patterns) of energy for the upcoming new year. After these three we then have the soothing, calming, warming, nurturing and tending waters of the mother (Cancer). Cancer initiates our next season under the hot suns of summer. Planets, stars and signs create the Temple of Light directing humanity towards all things new. March 29 is Palm Sunday, when the Christ, World Teacher, was led into Jerusalem (City of Peace) on a donkey (humility). Palms waving above His head, signified recognition of the Christ’s divinity. Palm Sunday is the Sunday before the Easter (Resurrection Festival). Palm Sunday begins Holy Week, the week of capture, imprisonment, passion, sacrifice, crucifixion, death and resurrection of the christ. All events in the Christ’s life represent events (initiations) that humanity experiences through many lifetimes. We turn our attention to these holy events this week. Their concepts portray and reveal to us greater spiritual understanding. Then, Aries, the “light of life itself” shines through us.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Best of Santa Cruz 2015 Editor's Picks

BEST NIGHT CAP WARSAW MULE AT SHADOWBROOK
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Spring Spirits

Sean Venus’ gin straight up, remembering Rosa’s and a tasting of Hungarian wines

 

What’s your favorite most recent outdoor discovery in Santa Cruz?

A hike that’s across from Waddell Beach. I didn’t realize you could go across the highway and do a super simple loop, and it’s beautiful. You can see the coastline. Liz Porter, Santa Cruz, Community Outreach

 

Martin Ranch Winery

Muscat 2012

 

Front Street Kitchen

Pop-up spot attracts paleo crowd with locally sourced low-carb meals