Santa Cruz Good Times

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Dec 25th
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From The Editor

ednote stevePlus Letters To the Editor

Sven Davis is a funny guy—or so he tells me. Naturally, then, when he expressed interest in writing for GT again, after going missing from these pages for the last two years, I was thrilled. His pitch made me laugh, too: “Death: Doing It Right the First Time.”

A few days after we agreed on a deadline, though, I started to have second thoughts. Was a humor piece about death—even about preparing for death—really going to work? And would there be any point, in the end? (No pun intended.)

I should have known from Davis’ past pieces for GT that I had nothing to worry about. His cover story this week is both deftly funny and a fascinating, informative look at the complexities and absurdities of how we prepare for death. Welcome back, Mr. Davis.

Elsewhere in this issue, Aric Sleeper takes a detailed look at the grand jury report on deaths at the Santa Cruz Main Jail, and we bid farewell to Michael Bryant, who in his time as KZSC’s station manager earned it national acclaim. I first met Bryant not long after he joined the station, and over the years I’ve been shocked that the meteoric rise of KZSC under his watch hasn’t gotten more attention locally. Hopefully, this article will provide some insight into his legacy. He deserves it.

Steve Palopoli | Editor-in-Chief


letters

 

Political Splits
I had looked forward to the consolidation of the Santa Cruz Weekly and Good Times into one publication. I had thought it would be a step forward for our community. I am disappointed.

Good Times claims to reflect the “voice, character and spirit of our unique community.” The commenting rules include to not “stalk or otherwise harass another.”

The Take Back Santa Cruz activist group has a varied member list—from conservatives to liberals, from teenagers to adults, from IT executives to stay-at-home moms, from artists to business owners. In short, a microcosm of our community. Editor Steve Palopoli has allowed several letters to be published that bash this group. TBSC has been voted the "Best Activist Group in Santa Cruz" several times. A founding member, Analicia Cube, was profiled favorably in a recent issue. They are not, as a group, advocates of hate and fear mongering.

Also, there are conservative and—egads!—Republican Santa Cruz residents. A recent article, “Capital Games,” bashed this group as responsible for all of society's ills and everything that is wrong with the world. Most of the language was hateful, exaggerated, and certainly was not a shining example of journalism. In short, a troll-like rant.

Does the editor wish to continue the polarization of political opinion, or to publish fair and balanced reporting? Does the editor wish to mandate one set of expected behaviors in its online forum, but allow anonymous letter writers and its staff to disregard the same?
Don Honda | Santa Cruz


I’m proud that we’ve long been a forum for letters laying out a spectrum of opinions about TBSC—supportive, critical, and anywhere in between, from any and all political affiliations. That’s what this forum is indeed all about.—Editor

ONLINE COMMENTS

Re: Laird on Pride History

Thanks to you, John, and the many others who have fought, and continue to fight, this difficult battle. Though there is always more to do, the culture is changing, and we are all better for it. This is not just about gay vs. heterosexuality, it is about both embracing our differences and acknowledging the basic fact that we all are very much the same, sharing the same needs and desires as our fellow human beings.
-Jon Girvetz

Beautifully written, and very evocative of those years in Santa Cruz.  I was there, John, and remember all of it—and you—very well.  May freedom continue to ring from every mountaintop, and thank you for your courage and persistence.
-Lee Collins


Letters Policy
Letters should not exceed 300 words and may be edited for length, clarity, grammar and spelling. They should include city of residence to be considered for publication. Please direct letters to the editor, query letters and employment queries to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ." All classified and display advertising queries should be directed to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ."  All website-related queries, including corrections, should be directed to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ."


photo contest
fotocont


RUN LIKE THE WIND A Chinese crested dog races across Rio Del Mar State Beach. Photograph by Randy Maldonado.



good work



CCA’s Big Day
Santa Cruz took a step toward cheaper, more renewable energy this week when the county was one of three around the Central Coast to benefit from a grant to study Community Choice Aggregation (CCA). 80 percent of Marin residents prefer their local county-owned CCA, which offers low rates and electricity from sustainable sources, over PG&E.


good idea



Mountain Ride
If there's more to life than winning, it stands to reason that there's more to going fast than coming in first. The 16th annual Santa Cruz Mountains Challenge bicycle ride is not a race, but it does cover a lot of ground, with routes ranging from 34 to 131 miles. For more information on the July 26 event and how to sign up, visit santacruzcycling.org.


quote



“What is a fear of living? It's being preeminently afraid of dying.”
— Maya Angelou


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Dancing In the Rain

District Attorney Bob Lee’s death in October stunned the Santa Cruz community, but he had battled cancer fiercely—and privately—for more than a decade. Now one of his closest friends reveals the remarkable inside story

 

Giving and Giving, Then Giving Some More

2014 is almost over. Wednesday, Dec. 17, the Jewish Festival of Light, Hanukkah, begins. We are in our last week of Sag and last two weeks of December. Sunday, Dec. 21 is winter Solstice, as the sun enters Capricorn (3:30 p.m. for the west coast). Soon after, the Capricorn new moon occurs (5:36 p.m. for the west coast)—the last new moon of 2014. Sunday morning Uranus in Aries (revolution, revelation) is stationary direct (retro since July 22). Uranus/Aries create things new and needed to anchor the new culture and civilization (Aquarius). We will see revolutionary change in 2015. Capricorn new moon, building-the-personality seed thought, is, “Let ambition rule and let the door to initiation and freedom stand wide (open).” Capricorn is a gate—where matter returns to spirit. But the gate is unseen until the Ajna Center (third eye), Diamond Light of Direction, opens. Winter solstice is the longest day of darkness of the year. The sun’s rays resting at the Tropic of Capricorn (southern hemisphere) symbolize the Christ (soul’s) light piercing the heart of the Earth, remaining there for three days, till Holy Night (midnight Thursday morning). Then the sun’s light begins to rise. It is the birth of the new light (holy child) for the world. A deep calm and stillness pervades the world.The entire planet is revivified, re-spiritualized. All hearts beating reflect this Light. And so throughout the Earth there’s a radiant “impress” (impressions, pictures) given to humanity of the World Mother and her Child. The star Sirius (love/direction) and the constellation Virgo the mother shines above. For gift giving, give to those in need. Give and give and then give some more. This creates the new template of giving and sharing for the new world.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Pinned Down

Actors shine in true-crime wrestling drama ‘Foxcatcher’
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Best Bites of 2014

A look back at the year in good taste

 

What downtown business is good for both one-stop shopping and last-minute gifts?

The Homeless Garden Project store. Because it is a community effort and has really useful and beautiful things, and allows you to connect with a lot of folks who are doing great work in Santa Cruz. Miriam Greenberg, Santa Cruz, UCSC Professor

 

Vino Tabi Winery

One of Santa Cruz’s most happening areas to go wine tasting is in the westside’s Swift Street Courtyard complex. Ever since a group of about a dozen wineries got together and formed Surf City Vintners (SCV), the place has been a hive of activity, and a wine-tasting mecca. Adding to the mix is the lively Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing beer company—making Swift Street Courtyard a perfect spot for a glass of wine or a pitcher of ale.

 

Betty’s Eat Inn

Yes, she’s a real person; no, this isn’t her