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Bird’s Eye View

Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comfortably then I shall begin. Despite my quite substantial weekly intake of wine, primarily for health reasons as you know, I didn’t really take part in any of the Pinot Festival activities that took place here in the Valley last weekend. No doubt the many experts in town for the three-day festival aired their oenophiliac views endlessly, pontificating on the grape at great length, and turning quite short stories into very long ones. Call me a philistine if you like, but I would like to think that if it tastes good and pairs well enough with what you are eating to give you that orgasmic sensation of which I have spoken before, then what more do you need to know? I see it as a little like art in the sense that all that really needs to be said is “I don’t know wine but I know what I like,” and then shut up and sip a little more.

Public Service Announcements. Lots of Memorial Day Weekend Events to tell you about. #176: It’s the final weekend of the month so that means time for another Barn Sale. As always it takes place at The St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church Refectory on AV Way just north of Boonville, from 9am to 3pm on both Saturday and Sunday, May 28th & 29th. #177: This Friday evening will see opening night of the AV Theater Guild’s annual production at The Grange. This year’s play, entitled ‘Southern Hospitality,’ is written by the same author as last year's popular show, and the curtain will go up at 7pm on Friday and Saturday evenings, both May 27th & 28th and June 3rd & 4th. With director Rod Basehore at the helm, and his ever-improving ensemble of actors “walking the boards,” I imagine it will be a “must see” event on this year's Valley social calendar. #178: the A.V. Senior Center Flea Market is all weekend long (Friday thru’ Monday) at the Veteran’s Hall parking lot. There’ll be bargains galore and snacks too. For further information call Gina at 895-3609. #179: The AV Art Guild Open Studio Tour is Saturday thru’ Monday. You are invited to visit the artists in their creative spaces as they work on painting, glass, jewelry, sculpture, ceramics and more. Call Peggy to find out more at 895-2493. #180: The Lion's Club “Chicken and TriTip Barbecue” (yes, there will be chicken too) to benefit the AV ElderHome is on Sunday, May 29th from 5pm to 8pm at the Redwood Grove in the Fairgrounds! This special event includes a silent auction with a well rounded assortment of services and products from our local merchants, restaurants and artists including a picnic table, private lunch/brunch in the garden at the hotel for 6 to 8, Sierra Nevada festival tickets, yoga classes, etc, etc. #181: And finally, please give serious consideration to attending the Memorial Day service at the Memorial Wall in the Evergreen Cemetery on AV Way on Monday, May 30th at noon. This is ultimately why this upcoming holiday weekend exists and a special and quite short event is being put on by the AV Veterans to commemorate those who have died while serving in the military. With US servicemen and women continuing to perish in various theaters of war, a good turnout would surely be a sign that their efforts have not been in vain and are deeply appreciated by those of us who live on. And with that in mind, for the Quote of the Week, let’s turn to Francis A. Walker, American economist, statistician, journalist, educator, academic administrator, and military officer in the Union Army, for his words “We come, not to mourn our dead soldiers, but to praise them.”

Topics under discussion this week at The Three-Dot Lounge. Yes, “Moans, Groans, Good Thoughts, and Rampant Rumors” from my favorite gathering place in the Valley.

…Many regulars continue to rave about the inspiring sight of the two horses and their foal in the field alongside Highway 128 next to Breggo Cellars. Nature is a wonderful thing. Not so many regulars, although I would be one of the few, were praising the job done by my brethren at the end of Holmes Ranch Road where a small fawn was devoured by several Turkey Vultures in about three hours last Wednesday afternoon. Hey, that’s nature too and it was simply Nature’s Garbage Collectors doing what they do best.

…Hard to believe but several regulars pointed out that this past Saturday saw our wonderful local book store — Laughing Dog Books — celebrate its first birthday. There was quite a gathering at the downtown venue. With owner Loretta Houck at the helm pouring the champagne, and the whole inventory 20% off, I imagine everyone had a splendid time — great job Loretta!

…Egg News. I find myself continuing to rave about the delicious and large free-range eggs available from Jennifer’s 100 Chickens in Philo. They are just too good for me not to mention, and I can assure you I have no financial gain or ‘egg-bonus’ for doing so! They can be found in the little refrigerator a few yards off the west side of the road at 7900 Highway 128, about a half-mile north of downtown Philo, just past and opposite the 22.34 milemarker. I suggest you call Jennifer at 895-2585 before stopping by. Oh, and for previous customers, she asks that you drop off your egg cartons, please.

Time to take my leave. With the hot weather almost with us, please remember to keep your windows cracked if you have pets in your vehicle. Otherwise, ‘Keep the Faith’; be careful out there; stay out of the ditches; think good thoughts; and may your god go with you. One final request, “Let us prey.” As always, humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. (Contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at

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