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Off The Record

TUESDAY'S UKIAH DAILY JOURNAL featured a front page story by Justine Frederiksen about an inside City Council job that essentially gives a privately owned restaurant called Patrona, a venue much favored by the Westside Libs, a nice chunk of public property, and another chunk of public money for outdoor seating and something called a bike corral.

I GUESS THE idea is that the libs will wheel up on their bikes, corral them, then saunter over to an outside table at the corner of North School and West Standley for a low-cal martooni, an image that makes me want to go out and pound down at least a half-pint of Maker's Mark. Ukiah's flat terrain and wide streets are a natch for bikes but you seldom see a full-on bike person in Ukiah. In vertical Frisco, two thousand dollar bikes and dweebos of all ages, togged out in full Lance Armstrong lycra, are everywhere. The people you do see on bikes in Ukiah tend to be drunks on garage sale Schwinns who've lost their driver's licenses. Who will use a bike corral appended to an upscale restaurant in downtown Ukiah seems to me pegged to your basic dubious assumption, but whoever it is this thing will cost the taxpayers an estimated $12,000 and several parking spaces. The inevitable Mari Rodin, the town's former mayor and now a city councilperson, is quoted: “This is a small project that will have a huge bang for the buck....This is a great, exciting project that will bring people downtown.” You'd have thought Ukiah was resurrecting The Acropolis across the street from the Courthouse, and ever notice how the libs seem to exist in a perpetual state of excitement, and become nearly orgasmic when they can throw a pal or a political supporter a wad of public money? If a bunch of Ukiah cholesterol cases waddled up to Ms. Rodin to ask for a Harley corral and outdoor tables at Henny Penny's, do you think the Ukiah City Council would go for it?

SORRY TO SEE Gil Scott-Heron go. A true genius at a time Lady GaGa and other exhibitionists are being celebrated as great artists, Scott-Heron, always way too real for tv and the big concert halls, wrote the unforgettable “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” and the piece that still makes me laugh every time I hear his recording of him doing it is “Whitey's On The Moon.” Scott-Heron called his music bluesology and always viewed the rappers who claimed to be inspired by him with suspicion, if not disdain. If you've never heard him, dial him up on your computer. There was nobody like him.

HANK SIMS WRITES: “With the Blue Lake and Trinidad Police Departments being recently disbanded, we have even more area to cover than ever before,” argues Humboldt County Deputy Sheriff’s Organization President Steve Quenell in a press release that also talks about the possible ramifications of the closure of the McKinleyville and Garberville substations. 'And, now they want to cut 20 law enforcement officers, leaving us with only 73? There has to be a better way to solve the County’s budget without so dramatically threatening the public’s safety and the safety of the deputies left to patrol the community.'“

SIMS ALSO NOTES: “The current outbreak of measles in the United States is the worst the country has seen in 15 years. There have been 118 cases reported in 23 states since the beginning of the year, according to the CDC — most all of them involving travelers to or from other countries. The disease is currently epidemic in Western Europe and Southeast Asia. Three of those 118 cases occurred last month in Mendocino County. According to Erika Nosera, Mendo County’s Communicable Disease Nurse, the mini-outbreak happened on the Mendocino Coast, when a recently arrived tourist from France started coming down with symptoms. That tourist infected two local adults, neither of whom had been vaccinated for the disease. After a short period of isolation and treatment, all are now well. But the Humboldt County Public Health Department put out the warning yesterday, and with good reason. Tourist season is upon us, and — Goddess forbid — the terrible disease could conceivably break free and go epidemic on us here. All the more because Humboldt County has pretty abysmal vaccination rates. A larger-than-normal percentage of our population still believe that vaccines will harm children, despite the fact that the science behind such claims has been pretty comprehensively debunked. What hasn’t been debunked at all is that measles itself can harm your kids. Badly. Two things: If you’re looking to get your kids vaccinated and you can’t get an appointment at your doctor, the Humboldt County Public Health Department will set you up. Call 268-2108 to make an appointment. They can get you in quickly. Vaccinations are $15 for kids 18 or under, or $75 $90 for adults. And if you do find yourself coming down with measles-like symptoms — a cough and a running nose accompanies by a strange rash that usually starts on the face, crawling down from there — contact your doctor. Don’t go to the hospital, because you don’t want to infect all the other people in the waiting room.

MAN BEATER OF THE WEEK: Lucille Almond, 52, Ukiah. Clearly a woman who has suffered, Ms. Almond should not, in middle passage, have to endure arrest, jail, court appearances, and anger management lectures from passive-aggressive, up-from-hippie, county-paid, NPR-listening “therapists” simply for defending herself from the undoubted provocations of her insignificant significant other. Innocent by reason of life, your honor!

OUR SECOND MAN BEATER of the week, Ms. Crystal Lilly of Willits, is 24 years old, 5'6” and 130 pounds. Monday, we polled the first three male visitors who came through the office door, asking each, “Would you call the cops on this kid if she hit you? The first guy said, “If she pounded me all the way into the ground to my eyeballs with a giant mallet I'd only ask her for another kiss.” The second man said, “Miss Lilly can do whatever she wants to me. Can I leave my phone number with you guys in case she calls? I'd also like to meet Cleo Dumont.” And the third man said with a wistful little smile, “No matter what she did to me I'd wrap her in love's warm embrace.” The only woman we quizzed glanced at Miss Lilly's mug shot and remarked, “Whoever she is she's got my vote. Most men deserve a lot more than a slap.”

THE JOLLIEST DOMESTIC combatants of the week are Mr. and Mrs. Motts of Fort Bragg, again proving that a good light heavyweight can hold her own with a heavyweight anytime, Mrs. M coming in at 175, Mr. M at 240.

A READER WRITES: “Sometimes one word is all it takes to justify the price of the AVA's admission. This week that word was 'castrati.' Honorable Mention honors go to 'Mexicanish'.”

WRITING ON HIS Facebook page last week, DA Eyster lets fly at supervisors Smith, Hamburg and Pinches as they “continue their effort to dismantle your public safety agencies. Despite constitutional mandate that public safety shall be the 1st priority of local govt., these 3 supervisors approved further lay-offs of deputy sheriffs (6), & also have now set their sights on those who prosecute violent and child abuse crimes, as well as those who supervise convicted gang members. Wow!”

NOT TO BEAT you over the head with my pinko opinions on saving deputies and health centers and social security and medicare and public education and state parks and the rest of the good things we've have taken for granted in this country since 1936, but ever since the New Deal saved the major capitalists from themselves the major capitalists and their descendants have dreamed of destroying all tax-funded social amenities. The difference between then and now is that the contemporary ruling class lacks the candor of their grandfathers who used to say forthrightly things like, “We can pay half the working class to shoot the other half.” These days the RC funds the Clintons and the Obamas while buying (on the cheap) elected reps at all levels of government while they use the dominant media, also owned by oligarchs, to convince the dummies that government is the problem, hence Fox News, most syndicated newspaper columnists, radio blowhards like Limbaugh and soft propagandists like NPR, the message being, “Gosh, there's just no money anymore for any of this stuff.” If you're a person of ordinary means and you believe there's no money for you and yours, it'll take a lot more than night classes to wise you up.

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