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Apr 24th
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From the Editor

greg_archerPlus Letters to the Editor

Giving. Gratitude. Food. At last—2011’s perfect trifecta has arrived. Indulge in all that, but first ... down to business. Every year at Thanksgiving, GT joins efforts with the Community Foundation of Santa Cruz to shine the spotlight on four nonprofits whose work in the area makes a significant impact on the lives of locals. All this to not only raise the level of awareness on several unique organizations, but to generate funds for these creative nonprofits. Enter the Packard Foundation, which matches a percentage of the funds that you, the reader, contribute. The theme of the year’s crop of nonprofits revolve around youth. So, how important are local youths—their education, their futures, their lives—to you? Turn to page 18 and learn more about how the Summer Youth Employment Program, Watsonville Wetlands Watch, Mariposa’s Arts and Food, What?! contribute to the greater good in the area by working with local youths. Onward ...
There’s big news at the Tannery Arts Center revolving around the relatively new nonprofit dubbed The Tannery World Dance and Cultural Center. “Two years ago when I found out that the Tannery was coming to fruition I was intrigued by the idea that [the dance center] would become a centerpiece for arts and culture in Santa Cruz,” notes Cat Willis, the organization’s founder. Learn more in our report.
If you’ve been keeping track of the PG&E SmartMeter debate—or becoming part of the discussion—then you’re already familiar with how heated things have become. This week, the dialogue continues in News, where we tackle several main questions facing customers and deliver some answers.
What’s left? Time. And food. And gratitude, of course. So, whatever your plans are for the Thanksgiving holiday, it might be good not only to take stock of the good things in your life, but feel encouraged to be one of those good things in the lives of others. 
Thanks for reading. We here at GT are immensely grateful.
Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief

Letters to the Editor

The Desal Debate Goes On
Regarding last week’s article on desalination, those who enjoy the privilege of utilizing political power to get what they want almost always claim that the "facts are the facts." An elephant in the middle of the room is a "fact," too, but as the Six Blind Men discovered, the truth and significance of the "facts" we confront are not all that clear. Too bad the city council and its appointed officers are more focused on doing what they want than in working with the public to achieve a common understanding of the "facts."
In other words, I'm with Rick Longinotti in this debate. For those not familiar with the "The Blind Men and the Elephant," you can read the poem right at gapatton.net/2010/0...d-men.html.
Gary A. Patton
Santa Cruz


Best Online Comments

On  ‘James Durbin’ ...
James is the real deal. He has a passion that he lives, he has values and morals that keep him grounded on Earth; and he knows we are all here for a higher purpose and that we are to give back to humanity. He does it all, he is the "Real Deal!" and I am so happy for him and his family.
Can't wait to see the Fire Marshall at the Civic! I'll be there!
—Gini Gyorkos

James has such a great spirit, and it's that spirit that inspires others to believe that it is possible to achieve what they think at the time is unachievable. Thanks James for your story and your passion to help others.
—Wanda Best

Wow. Great interview! Great guy that James Durbin. Heidi Air Lowe—you’re a great woman. Very inspiring human story. Thank you for sharing for all the work you are doing. It takes great dedication to work as hard as you are doing now. Your fans all thank you.
—Angele7

On  ‘SmartMeters’ ...
Sorry, but I think this is all a bunch of b.s. hysteria. The problem I have with all of this SmartMeter nonsense is that these meters emit just as much RF radiation or less than cell phones, wireless phones, WiFi hotspots and microwave ovens. All RF radiation producing devices around the home have FCC IDs, which you can look up on the FCC website and easily find the RF Exposure calculations/reports.
My Smartmeter FCC report shows 21.7 dBm maximum RF Power. Take a look at the handy dandy interwebs and guess what, typical RF power output from that Apple Airport you’ve been sitting by in your home office for the last five years is about 25dBm, your microwave oven leakage about 30dBm, and the cell phone you blab on five hours a day, up to 33dBm. My guess is that a lot of the people complaining are exposed to these other devices regularly but have no ill effects. On top of it, just about all meters are partially enclosed in a grounded metal box that blocks much of the RF radiation emitted towards the house anyway (it's called a Faraday cage if you want to look it up). And yes, I am schooled in electrical engineering, have studied RF and microwave theory and my first job out of college was working on military radios so I do know a little about the subject.
—Techy in the Woods


Holiday Deadlines
Good Times offices will be closed Nov. 24-25 for the Thanksgiving holiday. The following holiday deadlines will be in effect for the , Dec 1 issue:

Display, Class Display and Bulletin Board: 3 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 23. Classified ads: 10 a.m., Monday, Nov. 28.
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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 17

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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