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Apr 24th
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From the Editor

greg_archerS2sPlus Letters to Good Times...
H1N1 Debates
Beyond Paper and Plastic
HOLIDAY DEADLINES

Leave it to good old Bookshop Santa Cruz to offer some levity as we speed closer to a new decade and, perhaps, a brand new era. The revered Downtown Santa Cruz bookseller, known for its long history of commenting on politics and political books, is now offering an "essential" item as a companion to Sarah Palin's new book, “Going Rogue.” For every book sold, the bookstore will give the buyer a free bag of walnuts dubbed: "Sarah Palin's Just Plain Nutz." The bag is also available solo for just under $4 for those, the bookshop says, "who can stomach a 1-ounce bag of walnuts, but can't stomach 432 pages of Sarah Palin's writing."

editor_nutzThis wouldn't be the first time Bookshop Santa Cruz entered into the political arena. Back in 1993, the store sounded off on Rush Limbaugh's book, “See I Told You So,” selling it for the price of baloney. A few years later, in 1995—the year Newt Gingrich was named Time Magazine's Man of the Year—the bookshop offered a custom-made barf bag with every copy sold of Gingrich's read, “Contract With America.” Then came George W. Bush—admittedly, an easy target—and the Bush Countdown Clock. Learn more about all this at bookshopsantacruz.com.

In the meantime, there’s nothing nuts about giving. And that’s just what the theme of this week’s issue is all about. In our annual Community Fund Issue, we spotlight five nonprofits making a positive difference. But the overall theme in this year’s issue is about “resources.” Dive in and learn more details about the Community Foundation.

There’s plenty more, so enjoy the issue. And relish the abundance all around you.

Greg Archer
Editor

 


Letters to Good Times Editor

H1N1 Debates
In response to Susan Smith's letter (GT 11/19) regarding my letter, my intent was not, as Ms. Smith claims, to be "persuading pregnant women not to receive the H1N1 vaccine" but to have them examine the pros and cons and make an informed decision.
As for my source for stating that the chance of a pregnant woman dying of swine flu being one in 4 million, this is based on CDC data presented by Professor Michael Bronze MD on emedicine.com showing that during the H1N1 outbreak last spring, one in 300,000 pregnant women were hospitalized. As statistics showed that the death rate of pregnant women admitted to the ICU was 7.7 percent, and as not all of those hospitalized were admitted to ICU, the death rate can be calculated to be less than one in 4 million.
Dismissing Dr. Russell Blaylock, a board-certified neurosurgeon,
with the pejorative term "quack" does not negate the well-documented scientific research he presents to support his views.
As for Ms. Smith's assertion that "Overwhelming evidence suggests
that vaccines save lives," the relevant question here is whether influenza vaccine saves lives. A review of flu vaccine published  in the British Medical Journal on 10/28/06 by the totally mainstream and highly respected Cochrane Collaboration concluded that "evidence from systematic reviews shows that inactivated vaccines have little or no effect." Some years the vaccine is a total mismatch for the flu strains that circulate, meaning that it can not possibly help, yet in those years there is no increase in deaths from influenza.
It is indisputable that pregnant women who get influenza do have a
higher rate of hospitalization. However, it has not been shown
that vaccination reduces this rate. Vaccination also has indisputable risks.
Vaccination is a very heated issue, with proponents who believe they save lives incensed by those who question it and opponents truly terrified of the hazards. Like many complex issues, it is far from black and white. There are both risks and benefits to vaccination. I recommend flu vaccine to some of my patients based on their individual circumstances. I urge everyone to examine both sides of the debate and decide what is right for them.
Randy Baker MD
Soquel

Beyond Paper and Plastic
I appreciated reading Lisa Jensen’s recent column about the modern world and the advances in technology. Personally, I could not stomach a world that wouldn’t encourage actual book-reading—as in picking up a real book and reading it, as opposed to going online or getting one of those silley e-book readers. Books are cool. The actual act of turning the the pages is downright powerful. It sounds silly, but how much can you really appreciate from some ridiculous, souless electronics device.
Betty Arnold
Capitola

Good Times HOLIDAY DEADLINES
GT offices will be closed Nov. 26-27 for the Thanksgiving Holiday. The following deadlines will be in effect for the Thursday, Dec. 3 issue: Display, Class Display and Bulletin Board: 3 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 25. Classified ads: 10 a.m., Monday, Nov 30. Calendar: noon Monday, Nov 23.

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Best of Santa Cruz County 2014

The 2014 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll Come on in, and have a look around. There’s a lot to see—hundreds of winners selected by thousands of GT readers across Santa Cruz County. So if some of this looks familiar, it’s probably because you helped make it happen. But there are always new things to discover, too—you could go to a different winner or runner-up every day in the Food and Drink category alone, and you’d be booked just about until next year’s Best of Santa Cruz County issue comes out.

 

Something Essential Disappears

Lunar and solar eclipses follow one another. Lunar eclipses occur at full moons, and solar eclipses at new moons. Two weeks ago at the full moon we had the blood red moon—a total lunar eclipse (the next one is Oct. 8). On Monday night, April 28 (new moon), as the Sun, Moon and Earth align, a solar eclipse (Sun obscured) occurs. Eclipses signify something irrevocably is changed in our world. The Sun is our essential life force. Monday’s new moon, 9 degrees Taurus, is also an annular solar eclipse when the Moon moves centrally in front of the Sun, yet does not cover the Sun completely. The Sun's outer edges, still visible, form a “ring of fire” around the Moon.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 24

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Palate-Stretching 101

A wine education with Soif’s experts As a veteran of many weekend wine “seminars” at Soif, I have to confess that I’ve never known less (going in) and learned more (coming out) than I did last week at the Spanish Wine Tasting with ace rep Brian Greenwood. These are classy, casual events and it’s hard to imagine having this much flavor fun anywhere for $20.

 

Martin Ranch Winery

Sauvignon Blanc 2011 One of my favorite wines is Sauvignon Blanc, and this one made by Martin Ranch is particularly lovely. Bright, crisp and refreshing, it’s perfect to pair with fish and shellfish—and good for picnics as it has an easy screw-cap bottle. There’s nothing worse than setting down your blanket, pulling out your sandwiches—and then realizing you don’t have a corkscrew.

 

Foodie File: Red Apple Cafe

Breakfast takes center stage at Gracia Krakauer's Red Apple Cafe Before they moved to Aptos, Gracia and her husband Dan Krakauer would visit friends in Santa Cruz County and eat at the Red Apple Café all the time. Then they moved up here from Santa Monica five years ago, and bought the Aptos location (there’s a separate one in Watsonville) from the family who owned it for two decades.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management