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Jan 25th
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GT Columns

Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor Plus Letters to the Editor &

American Idol: The Durb Watch

James Durbin. We can’t get you off our minds. Durbin Fever is high, especially this week, as American Idol voters whittle down the competion to the Top Three. More answers will be unveiled Thursday night so read this week’s Durb Watch (below). And stay tuned ... and tune into GTv on goodtimessantacruz.com for our special coverage of a fun outing at Pizza My Heart, where Durbin fans came out to show their support for the popular 22-year-old local singing sensation. (Keep on keeping on, James ... we’re rooting for you.)
From music, we move to ... more music. This week’s cover is a kick. Music Editor Jenna Brogan takes us inside local singing organizations—think Glee and stir—and the result proves to be very compelling. For starters, the local talent here never ceases to amaze, but the groups Brogan highlights each have their own unique style and backstory that you may find even more intriguing. Dive into the fun beginning on page 14.
And from Music, we head right into some film business. The Santa Cruz Film Festival comes to a close this weekend and the excitement is still high. The closing night film by director Rocky Romano, Ruffo, plays at 7:30 p.m. at The Rio. We garnered quite a bit of online response from last week’s cover story on Romano’s doc, which chronicles local surf icon Anthony Ruffo’s life challenges. (See Letters.) Join the convertsation online at goodtimessantacruz.com. And check out all the other film fest details at santacruzfilmfestival.org.
There’s more movie madness, particularly an upcoming film event at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19 at the Del Mar  Theatre in Downtown Santa Cruz, where there will be a screening of the new documentary The Big Uneasy. The best news? There will be a Q&A with director Harry Shearer afterward. See you there.
Thanks for reading. More soon ...


Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief
Letters to the Editor

Major Metro Issues
Your article on Bus System Blues (GT 5/5) struck a nerve. Driving past Cabrillo College any day during the week, students are waiting for a bus, but now Metro is considering cutting more bus routes to make up for a $3 million shortfall. Meanwhile, our Regional Transportation Commission has authorized spending $22 million to widen Highway 1 for less that’s a mile between Morrissey and Soquel exits that will move rush-hour traffic exactly that far before it jams again.  Use that $22 million to keep the buses running for seven years!
Also, we should be concerned about combining a Regional Transportation Commission, whose majority has stated their number one priority is widening the highway, with a Metro Transit District who is fighting to keep public transit functioning. Some of these RTC commissioners would love to get their hands on the Metro District’s half-cent sales tax for their highway widening project that was turned down by the voters in 2004.
Paul Elerick
Co-Chair, Campaign
for Sensible Transportation
Aptos

Ruffo’s ‘Wild Ride’
Regarding last week’s cover story on Anthony Ruffo and the film about him in the Santa Cruz Film Festival, those of us succeeding in recovery all love to hear about someone else doing it. Being an old surfer who'd had a brief, pleasant encounter with Anthony at Huntington, at the pier years ago, I was sad to hear he'd gotten in trouble. Reading this great article gives me just a little more hope for the future of those in similar situations. Addiction to anything is unfortunate. Good on you, Anthony, and good luck with the legal system. You'll survive. Never fear.
Hair Brainman
Santa Cruz

Ruffo Is Inspiring
The Anthony Ruffo story is an inspiration. I remember Anthony on Cowell's beach 30 years ago and always looked up to him—he was kind of fascinating. I have the utmost respect for anyone who has the balls to confront the power of addiction, admit it and then heal it. It's a very long and painful process. Right on, Anthony. You keep on ... keepin on.
J. Poth
Santa Cruz

Jump On That Durbin Train
Regarding the Best of Santa Cruz issue and James Durbin getting the Best Singer/Performer picture in the Critics’ Picks (GT 4/28), I've been following James for the past two years and I agree with GT that, without a doubt, James is the best of Santa Cruz. I'm very happy for his success and it's fantastic that he can showcase his amazing talent, passion and love for singing on a national stage with American Idol. Remember, everyone, it's up to us to vote every Wednesday night to help James and his family achieve his dream. Go James, go.
Lawrence Rachleff
Santa Cruz

Memorial Day Deadlines
Good Times offices will be closed Monday, May 30, in observance of Memorial Day.   Offices will reopen 9 a.m. Tuesday. The following holiday deadlines will be in effect for the June 2 issue:
Display and Class Display advertising deadlines will be 4 p.m., Thursday, May 26.
Classified advertising deadline will be 11 a.m., Friday, May 27.
Editorial Calendar, Music and Events deadlines will be noon, Tuesday, May 24.



Emotions ran high last week when James sang a heartfelt rendition of “Without You,” but they ought to be even higher this week: If Durbin isn’t voted off, and makes the Top Three, then our home boy will come home this weekend for special events on Saturday, May  14. (Check out our updates online.) GTv will be on hand if the events happen, so stay tuned ... In the meantime, seeing that we think he’ll be here and that things will move forward, join us at one of the Idol viewing parties, (Wednesday nights) where we root James on: Pizza My Heart (2180 41st Ave., Capitola). Ideal Bar & Grill (106 Beach St.], Carmona’s Barbecue and Deli (1040 East Lake Ave., Watsonville) and Green Valley Grill (40 Penny Lane, Watsonville). Read our updates online every Thursday and Friday at goodtimessantacruz.com.
Opinion

A Town With No Pity

A Town With No Pity

This past winter was a big one for the flu; lots of people seemed to get hit who are usually resistant, including me. Fever, aching, fatigue, a cough ... it sucked, and I went through two rounds of it. Then a co-worker said she was starting to feel kind of sick, I started telling her what she should expect, and how much she should rest, and what she should take for it, and ... and then I recognized the look on her face, because it was one I’d been sporting myself.

What she wanted, and what I wanted when I was sick, was a little sympathy. But you don’t get that in this town, you get advice. In much of the world, it's accepted that bad things just happen sometimes, and we should give comfort to one another through the hard times and hope for better. But we're a problem-solving people. And in Santa Cruz, we’ve got more solutions to choose from than anywhere else.

Read more...
Local Talk

Is it easy to get around Santa Cruz by car? What would make it better?

Is it easy to get around Santa Cruz by car? What would make it better?

No, it's not easy to get around Santa Cruz by car and one of the major issues living on the Westside is Mission Street. People always want to make left-hand turns and there's no turn lanes for a lot of it. Also, I'd have to say the way traffic is fed onto Highway 1 at the fishhook is absolutely horrendous. I don’t have a response to that but it's diabolical.

Michael Olson

Santa Cruz | Technology Specialist

Read more...
Astrology

The Wesak Taurus Buddha Full Moon Festival

The Wesak Taurus Buddha Full Moon FestivalThe week is filled with expectation; a great festival is being prepared. Worldwide, aspirants, disciples, Initiates, holy ones, pilgrims are traveling to the Wesak Valley in the Himalayas for the yearly blessing from the Buddha, who enters our earth plane for eight minutes to distribute the Will and Love of the Father. Many of us will be there, by intention, during the night of the festival when the moon is full—Tuesday morning, May 17, 4 a.m. 
Read more...
Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to the Editor &

American Idol: The Durb Watch


Capturing the world's most notorious criminal. Where do you go from there? At the moment, I'm not sure that's a real issue. After a stunning announcement Sunday night by President Barack Obama that Osama bin Laden was found and killed in Pakistan, confidence in the President has shot high (to say the least) but the emotional ripple effects of a bin Laden-less world are still playing out.

Read more...
Local Talk

If you were going to make a film, what would it be titled, and what would it be about?

If you were going to make a film, what would it be titled, and what would it be about?

 

The Shift's Going to Hit the Fan. It would be about mass global consciousness awakening on the planet.
Christine Thyden
Santa Cruz | Hair Stylist/Makeup Artist

 

Read more...
Astrology

Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day, Preparation

Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day, Preparation

Thursday is Cinco de Mayo, Gemini moon, a perfect day for festivities. Sunday is Mother’s Day. The Cancer moon calls us to nurture and nourish our mothers in ways they need and understand (not necessarily our ways and needs).
I remember one Mother’s Day my brothers took mother (a Leo) to a Lobster Hut. It was (is) also a biker (motorcycle) hangout. There were no tables inside. Set amidst boulders and teetering on a hillside were picnic tables. The winds were almost gale force. A good time was not had by mother! My three brothers wondered why. They loved it.
Wednesday, a highly charged, multi-planetary-aspected day, Mars enters Taurus in the early morning. We are serious about preserving our lives, bringing the art of living into our world as it all crashes down around us.

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Opinion

A Thriving Downtown Santa Cruz

A Thriving Downtown Santa Cruz

When I was in grade school, my classmates came up with a game that we turned into a writing assigment: “The good news is ... (fill in the blank) and the bad news is .... (fill in the blank).” And it would go on like that for, oh, 500 words or so.

That seems a good model to follow when writing about Downtown Santa Cruz. Because the bad news is that a number of stores are closing or have closed on Pacific Avenue: the Vault, Borders, Velvet Underground, Bugaboo.

But the good news is that times are changing. Changing times mean new opportunities, and already there are a few new faces showing up along the avenue: Betty Burgers’ sit-down restaurant, Legs, Verve and Stripe.

Read more...
Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to the Editor &

American Idol: The Durb Watch

The best. What is that exactly? What does doing your best in 2011 really mean? How many people really do that? Still? True, some would argue that in our current culture, where everything from actually reading (thanks for doing so here by the way) to going the distance—really going above and beyond what you’re asked to do—seems to have drowned in the cold soup of mediocrity and inane reality TV, I propose that Santa Cruz is actually a unique beast. The level of creativity and inventiveness here continues to evolve at remarkable levels.

Read more...
Opinion

Spring is Sprung

Spring is Sprung

Spring break. Here it comes. And whether you’re imagining Paula Prentiss in Where the Boys Are, or Tom Cruise in Losin’ It, there seems to be an overwhelming focus on the essential rites of the birds and the bees during this season. I hear you pagans, “Duh, it’s Beltane! Time to celebrate fertility!” Chicks and bunnies duly noted, thank you.

Here in Santa Cruz the phrase “Spring Break” is a double-edged sword. Maybe even triple-edged. Kids get a break from school: good edge. Visitors descend on our quiet burg: bad edge. Visitors stuff money in our local economy: good edge. They date our daughters and leave juice boxes on the beach: bad edge. They date our needy friends and leave large tips: good edge.

Read more...
 
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Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

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