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Sep 23rd
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GT Columns

Editors Note

From The Editor

From The Editor

Plus Letters To the Editor


Welcome to 2014 and another cycle around the sun. So, let’s get rolling, shall we? The business at hand in this week’s cover story revolves, in part, around business and the economy. Remember that subprime mortgage crisis in the summer of 2007 and the ensuing recession of 2008? Do you recall how the county was affected? And what about the recession that blossomed in late 2008? Back in 2009, consumer confidence plummeted as annual taxable sales dipped to the lowest figure in more than a decade. Several years later, here we are in 2014 and one question lingers: has the local economy mended?

 

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Astrology

Final Journey of the Magi

Final Journey of the Magi

The week begins with Aquarius moon (Thursday morning). Appropriate for continuing the astrological Twelve Days of Christmas. The foundational knowledge in the Aquarian Age is the study of astrology, which leads to a clearer understanding of one another.

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Local Talk

What are your thoughts on New Year’s resolutions? Do you make them?

What are your thoughts on New Year’s resolutions? Do you make them?

Any resolution is a good resolution, it doesn’t have to be on New Year’s. You want to change yourself or your life, go ahead. I don’t make them.

Steven Fannell
Santa Cruz | Carpenter Specialist

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Sponsored Columns

Why Real Estate is a Better Investment Than Stocks

Why Real Estate is a Better Investment Than Stocks

By Suzy Rodoni, Real Estate Eight Three One

A recent article from FortuneBuilders, a premier real estate investment education company, said,  “Given that the U.S. market as a whole is just getting warmed up for a new boom, virtually every property sector is set to take off. Analysts are predicting great real estate investing opportunities from coast to coast.”  If you are debating about how to invest your money in 2014, real estate is definitely something to consider. Investing in real estate is largely considered, in general, to be safer than investing than stocks. Below are some of the benefits of investing in real estate:

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Astrology

A New Moon on New Year’s Day!

A New Moon on New Year’s Day!

Often after the holidays (Christmas) there’s a feeling of let-down and ennui. Complex feelings of endings and beginnings arise. It’s important to realize we can continue celebrating and staying festive for 12 days after Christmas. From Dec. 26 to Jan. 6 we celebrate the 12 Days After Christmas ending at Twelfth Night, Jan. 6, Epiphany, when the Three Magi Astrologer Kings discover the Holy Child. During these 12 days, the twelve zodiacal hierarchies (Angelic Presences, Aries to Pisces) stream the Sun’s vitality into the Earth and all life forms. Each day is under the influence of one of the zodiacal signs, which corresponds to a body part (to be tended to carefully). Beginning Dec. 26 to Jan. 1——Aries/head; Taurus/throat; Gemini/hands; Cancer/chest and breast; Leo/heart; Virgo/stomach and digestion. The following six signs continue next week. The 12 Days prepare for the New Year.

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Editors Note

From The Editor

From The Editor

Plus Letters To the Editor


Three good things. Name them. Think about it. Think of three good things about 2013, your life in 2013 or ... ? There’s an old saying: “What you focus on grows.” No doubt, this time of year, we’re reminding to A) practice gratitude and B) focus on the good. So, perhaps these are the “good” tasks at hand as we inch ever-closer to—gasp!—2014. If we focus on some good ... more good arrives. At least that’s the idea. Personally, I sense 2014 is going to be a stellar year. Don’t you? The Universe has a way of balancing things out, and after all that Santa Cruz County has faced in the last 18 months—the loss of two police officers and other  anomalies—2014 seems primed for some happier times.

.

 

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Local Talk

The GT staff is asked: What’s the quirkiest thing that happened in 2013? What’s the best thing that could happen in 2014?

The GT staff is asked: What’s the quirkiest thing that happened in 2013? What’s the best thing that could happen in 2014?

Healthcare … and for 2014 … mandatory cookies and milk and nap time for everybody.

Rose Frates-Castiglione
Ad Sales

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Editors Note

From The Editor

From The Editor

Plus Letters To the Editor

If you’re still pondering last-minute gift items, fear not—GT’s Holiday Gift Guide is out at newstands and kiosks. But you may be interested in this week’s cover story. Penned by Entertainment Editor Jenna Brogan, it captures some the best books of the year written by local authors. A few of those authors weigh in on their creative process, too, which is always intriguing. And let’s face it: it doesn’t hurt to promote reading in a day and age when Tweets and short messages polluted with abreviations run rampant.

 

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Astrology

Things That Sparkle

Things That Sparkle

Saturday, Dec. 21, after the Sun enters Capricorn and Winter Solstice begins, Venus (love, finances, beauty, resources and gifts) retrogrades (29 degrees Capricorn). For those still considering gifts for Christmas (a daunting task), here are some imaginative ideas. Consider things that sparkle and shine, resembling stars and planets. Things tasting divine. Things hand-sewn with a bit of tulle, bio-luminescent and incandescent. Things that bubble, boil, bringing a bit of trouble. Things that bend, lean, wave and sway—pink ostrich and peacock plumes. Things soft, satin, made of mohair, angora or llama.

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Opinion

Why Elon Musk is a Poor Person’s Worst Nightmare

Why Elon Musk is a Poor Person’s Worst Nightmare

In the movie Elysium, the wealthy and privileged flee Earth to inhabit a Larry Niven-like artificial ringworld, leaving the rest of humanity behind on a destitute planet. The future, if left to Elon Musk, bears an eerie resemblance to Elysium.

Musk, the chief executive officer (CEO) and chief technology officer (CTO) of SpaceX, the CEO of Tesla Motors, and chairman of the board of SolarCity, doesn’t care about the poor or middle-class and his business models prove it. The technology-centric crowd fawns over Musk like he is the second coming of Steve Jobs. He is a creative problem solver who looks to the future. However, his products serve only the wealthy and elite.

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Catwalk on the Wild Side

Meet the artists and designers behind this year’s edition of FashionART, SantaCruz’s most outrageous fashion show

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Watch List

From Google to the government to data brokers, why your privacy is now a thing of the past

 

The Peace Equation

Sunday is the United Nations’ International Day of Peace, a global peace-building day when nations, leaders, governments, communities and individuals are invited to end conflict, cease hostilities, creat 24 hours of non-violence and promote goodwill. Monday is Autumn equinox as the Sun enters Libra (right relations with all of life). The Soul Year now begins. We work in the dark part of the year (Persephone underground) preparing for the new light of winter solstice. Tuesday to Wednesday is the Virgo new moon festival. We know two things about peace. “The absence of war does not signify peace.” And “Peace is an ongoing process.” In its peace-building emphasis, the UNIDP, through education, attempts to create a “culture of peace, understanding and tolerance”. Esoterically we are reminded of the peace equation: “Intentions for goodwill (and acting upon this intention) create right relations with all earth’s kingdoms which create (the ongoing process of) peace on earth.” At noon on Sunday, in all time zones, millions of participating groups will observe a moment of silence for peace on earth. Bells will ring, candles will be lit, and doves released as the New Group of World Servers recite the Great Invocation (humanity’s mantram of direction). To connect with others around the world see www.cultureofpeace.org    Let us join together with the mother (Virgo). Goodwill to all, let peace prevail on earth. The dove is the symbol for the day.
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Sweet Treats

Local cannabis bakers win award for cookies

 

What fashion trends do you want to see, or not see?

Santa Cruz  |  High School Guidance Counselor

 

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

 

Santa Clara Wine Trail

My memories of growing up in England include my mother pouring port after Sunday dinner—and sometimes a glass of sherry before dinner. My family didn’t drink much wine back then, but we certainly made up for it with the port and sherry.