Why I let people pour butter in my eyes
There’s nothing like getting "a sign" to write a memoir about your Polish family’s mindbending tale surviving Stalin’s mass deportations of the Poles during the 1940s—and then following that sign—to make your mood swing. Big time. What on Earth was I thinking?
Uncover an untold story? Experience some Growth? Some transformation? You know what they don’t tell you about transformation is that it’s not always comfortable. That’s an understatement. So, after spending more than a year unearthing historic details about what happened to my clan, taking Family Constellation workshops and spending countless hours going through notes and interviews with surviving family members, my mind, my psyche, my emotional weather were all, well, completely shot.
The Santa Cruz journalism scene would not have been as contentious, creative, or subversive in the 1970s and ‘80s without Buz Bezore. And it wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun. When Buz sauntered off to the newsroom in the Great Beyond last week, Santa Cruz lost a little piece of itself.
I met Buz years before either of us landed a job in the newspaper biz, when we were both students at UCSC. We had a two-quarter, multi-media class together at College V (now Porter) called The ‘20s and ‘30s in America; we read Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Dos Passos and Gertrude Stein, and we watched a lot of movies in class—Busby Berkeley musicals, crime melodramas, screwball comedies.
Kyle Thiermann releases latest Surfing For Change film
Local surfer and wave maker Kyle Thiermann has come a long way since he first graced the cover of Good Times back in 2009. Then, his Surfing For Change series had recently launched with the debut of his first issue-based mini-documentary, Claim Your Change. Today, he has just rolled out his eighth installment in the series. The 16-minute film, Pro Surfers vs. GMOs, explores the heated battle over genetically engineered seed testing taking place on the Hawaiian islands. Through informative interviews, protest footage, input from concerned pro surfers (including Kelly Slater and Dustin Barca) and more, Thiermann provides a compelling introduction to a timely and controversial issue. At stake for the Hawaiians in the film is the matter of heavy chemical use in the testing of GMOs, often near to schools. Check out the film, learn more and join the conversation at surfingforchange.com.
While you're at it, revisit our 2012 Q&A with Thiermann in the GT Active magazine.
Citing a record dry 2013 and a current snowpack that is 20 percent of normal, Gov. Brown has declared an official State of Emergency regarding California’s drought. The declaration allows state officials to assist farmers and communities that are economically impacted by dry conditions and ensures that the state can respond if Californians face drinking water shortages. Additionally, state water officials will have the flexibility to manage water supply throughout California and state agencies have been directed to initiate immediate conservation measures.
Carmel Haven Wins Points For Perfect Locale and Cozy Setting
Some of Carmel's larger hotels get—and deserve—a lot of attention, but lately, I've discovered that it's the smaller, more quaint establishments that deserve some real kudos. Enter The Vagabod's House Inn. Conveniently perched just blocks from Downtown Carmel, you get a lot for your buck here— charm, solitude and an idyllic setting.
What we know about the current and eventual repercussions of the Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant's nuclear disaster
Radiation released into the environment following the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant meltdown has many people around the world worried, prompting regional groups such as S.O.S. Fukushima Response Santa Cruz to rally for international action in the ongoing cleanup process. While the prospect of increased, dangerous levels of radiation contaminating the world’s oceans is terrifying, experts say determining the immediate and long-term consequences of the disaster is difficult to estimate, and that there is not enough evidence of danger on California’s coastline to warrant mass hysteria, but that the incident demands close attention by government authorities. Here is what researchers and government officials know so far:
Brent Adams, a local homeless advocate and champion of the Santa Cruz Sanctuary Camp housing concept, recently returned home from a multi-state tour researching and documenting more than a half dozen citizen-organized, community-sanctioned homeless communities. Along with filmmaker Jeremy Leonard, Adams traveled throughout Oregon and Washington to interview the creators, inhabitants and neighbors of camps known as “Opportunity Village,” in Eugene, Ore., “Camp Quixote,” in Olympia, Wash., and “Tent City #3,” in Seattle. The pair recently completed and released a new 30-minute documentary entitled “Exploring the Sanctuary Camp Concept.”
Bavarian charm and ideal locale create the perfect Carmel getaway
You wouldn’t know it from looking at it from street level, but Hofsas House Hotel in Carmel happens to have one of the most striking panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and portions of Carmel Beach than any other vacation portal in all of Carmel.
That’s just one of the many things about Hofsas that stand out. The other notables revolve around the hotel’s history—family-owned and prospering now for 60 years—and its Bavarian-inspired theme. (It really is like stepping into a European fairy tale.
Vehicular manslaughter charges brought forth in case that killed a local cyclist
The Santa Cruz County District Attorney’s Office will charge a 63-year-old motorist with vehicular manslaughter for the crash that killed a local cyclist.
Josh Alper, 40, was struck and killed while biking southbound on Highway 1 near Davenport on Nov. 2.
Navindra Jain of Santa Cruz was driving northbound when he veered into oncoming traffic and crossed over into the bicycle line, hitting Alper. Jain has previously told authorities he fell asleep at the wheel driving home from religious services in Milpitas. He remained at the scene after the crash and spoke with authorities there.
Wednesday, after a lengthy investigation into the crash, prosecutors said they would charge Jain with misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter. The charge is different from felony gross vehicular manslaughter, which requires evidence that the person acted in such a reckless way that it creates a high risk of death.
Jain has not yet been arraigned.