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Jan 27th
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From the Editor

greg archer

Plus Letters to the Editor
& Winter Wonderland 

Lately, some colleagues and friends have been discussing the holiday season. Specifically, a few of them have, with deep sighs, expressed their trepidation about participating in holiday functions with “the family.” So, what is it about “the family” that sometimes has us, at any given time, feeling as if we’ve just sat down into the seat of an emotional roller coaster only to crash into a wall a few seconds later? This experience has been around for ages, so I’m not telling you anything new. The best remedy, in my opinion, is this: Humor. We can’t change people. But we can change our perspective. And laugh. That said, I thought I would share three Holiday Survival Tips with you ... just in case you suddenly find yourself completely frustrated in between holiday gift-buying and that inevitable family gathering.

1. It’s About You. There—somebody had to say it. Let’s face it, giving (and giving) can wear you out. Pop some Vitamin B. Stock up on Red Bull. Your serenity matters. (So does your self-esteem.) Your needs need to get met, so turn to a close friend, turn to a lover, turn to yourself in the mirror—whatever you do, avoid turning to the people that you know cannot understand you and keep expecting them to—wait for it—understand you.
2. It’s Not About You. You must have seen this coming. When in doubt, it’s best to “give” something to the people you find most frustrating ... (karma points here, people—work with me!) ... and not wait for them to “give” you the thing you think you need from them, which is never a monetary gift.
3. Forgive. Stanford luminary Dr. Fred Luskin’s groundbreaking books, especially “Forgive For Good,” reveals the healing powers and medical benefits of—here it comes—forgiveness. It’s the other F word, remember? Learn more here: learningtoforgive.com. As for me, sadly, this year, I will not be heading back to Chicago to visit my Polish family. (I have demanded a shipment of my mother’s homemade pierogies, though.) I will miss connecting with them physically, and witnessing all of our eccentricities co-existing, which tends to feel like the rarest of gifts in hindsight. Thanks for reading. Enjoy the issue. (And I mean this week’s paper, too.)

Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief


 Letters to the Editor

Occupied And Then Some Regarding the recent Occupy Santa Cruz story and ...“I think our focus is clear enough: ‘Fight the Corporatacy!’ What about that isn’t clear?” First of all, what the heck is the "Corporatacy?" This is the first I've seen anyone use that word. Then, what about the students who seem mostly concerned with tuition and fee increases? Or, what about the anarchists in the group who just want to raise hell? Or the people who don't like the Federal Reserve, or the camping ban. Or the bums, winos and druggies who are just looking for a place to squat? Schlesinger is the fourth or fifth person I've seen in the media in the past couple of days telling me what their primary focus is, and why don't we understand it, but none of them agreed with the others. Yes, there is the underlying general angst about anyone who is successful or has any authority ... commonly referred to as "the man," but that's it.

Wake up OSC. Unless you define success, you'll never win. None of what you apparently want can be accomplished in Santa Cruz—beyond busting the camping ban—because none of the decision makers (i.e. "the man") are here to change anything. And the decision makers don't really care what happens in Santa Cruz.
Ed Zachary
Santa Cruz


Best Online Comments

On Steve Jobs ’Byting the Apple’ by James D. Houston ...
What a lovely way to honor both Steve Jobs and Jim Houston.
—Paula M.

How great the pleasure of reading Jim Houston again. I still get shivers thinking about a story he wrote for Free Spaghetti Dinner called "The Oldest Man in the Room," about Ransom Rideout and the onset of environmental consciousness in the ’70s. He was a hell of a great guy, too, and he played bass. Like Paula says, a lovely way to honor them both.
—Richard Fenno

How absolutely prophetic. How mindblowingly straightforward. The "byte" out of the Apple of Knowledge has dumb founded me. How totally brilliant! What a word-meister. 
—Joseph Fox 

On SmartMeters ...
The PG&E rep’s snappy comments about "tampering" are the only tampering going on in regards to Ms. Sheehan's situation. See EMFSSafetyNetwork.org for a definition of tampering that was provided to them via an attorney. Sheehan was only protecting her health and privacy, not trying to deceive the monopoly about her amount of energy usage. The rep appears to be blowing a smokescreen, making it appear that she was "tampering," so to create fear and keep the sheeple in line. This to further line the pockets of his corporation and keep the surveillance grid intact? Like D. Icke suggested, the human race is getting off of its knees! ‘Bout time.
—S. Top DeStupid Meters


 

Do Windows: Winter Window Wonderland

Arrives Cast your vote! Once again, several Downtown Santa Cruz businesses are participating in Winter Window Wonderland. Peruse the list of local stores below that have spruced up their storefronts—it’s all about the holidays. Vote for your favorite holiday-themed window display at goodtimessantacruz.com. Participants/voters will be entered into a raffle and the winner will receive $100 in Downtown Dollars. The adventure can be found at: Artisans, Camouflage, Dell Williams Jewelers, Eco Goods, Kianti’s, Old School Shoes, Plaza Lane Optometry, SockShop & Shoe Co., Stripe, True Olive Connection and Wallflower Boutique. Winners will be announced later this month. Good luck. Support your local stores—vote!

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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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How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.