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Letters (March 11, 2020)

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The show went on and it was fabulous! Yup, 29 years in a row the Variety Show has happened. And boy, this year we had not only the internal drama of putting all the acts together, technical snafus, scheduling conflicts etc., etc, but the external drama of the Corona Virus. We stayed in touch with our local docs and followed their advice. As a group we considered the alternatives and came to some tough decisions. As a result we lost some great acts and attendance was down. Didn't seem to dampen the spirits of the crowd or the performers though.  

The staff of the Variety Show thanks everyone who came and was part of the show and those who didn’t. It's cool; we get it. 

In the midst of all the uncertainty, the unflagging efforts of the crew was great to see. Thank you concessionaires, lighting crew, security, sound crew, parking experts, ticket crew, hall set-up team, clean up gang, photographer, backstage crew, pit band, AV Juniors in the parking lot serving food, amazing video crew, raffleers, mavens of decor and the green room, and the special effects team (shhhhh).) Who have we missed? Truth be known, the show belongs to everybody in the valley and beyond. No show without the crowd, on the stage, behind the stage and most of all in front of the stage, you is us, we is you, and sometimes we're all together. Long live the Variety Show!  

Oh, almost forgot: FOR SALE, CHEAP, about 400 pairs of 2020 vision glasses slightly used. Call used prop division Vshow productions, 895-3807.

Captain Rainbow


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C. T. Rowe's articles chronicling his disputes with the Anderson Valley Land Trust contain numerous inaccuracies. Rowe’s Part 4 of 17 quoted from both his and our (Steve and Janet Snyder’s) easements, and in the process leapt to some wholly inaccurate conclusions, particularly on the subject of property use restrictions. 

In reference to storage of his RV on his property, Rowe quoted the partial sentence: “The dumping, release, burning of non-vegetative wastes, permanent storage, or other disposal of wastes, refuse, debris, motorized vehicles or hazardous substances are prohibited,” conveniently leaving out the critical remainder of that sentence which goes on to read, “provided, however, that vehicles, building materials, machinery or agricultural supplies required for uses that are permitted on the Property may be stored in the Residential Zones and Orchard Zone.”

C. T. Rowe has never been to our property or he would have seen that our motorhome, pursuant to the restrictions of our own easement agreement, was never parked outside a designated Residential Zone. His own RV, conversely, was stored in his Agricultural Zone, where it was not permitted. The AVLT never asked him to remove his RV from his property; it simply requested that he move it into one of two existing Residential Zones (totaling six acres). Further, when he did not want to move it, he was given the option of bringing his easement into compliance by creating a third Residential Zone, as permitted in the easement. He chose to pass on that legal option as well.

We also noted that he made assumptions about details in Barbara Goodell’s easement, which he admitted that he hadn’t fully read. His accusations of her supposed improper use and violation of the easement over her property are unfounded.

These are but a few of Rowe’s untrue rants against the AVLT and its former and current board members, all volunteers. A conservation easement is a complex legal document designed to ensure that land can be protected in perpetuity from development or other forms of degradation. These easements can provide federal income tax benefit to the donor. Those charged with oversight of these legally agreed-upon easements, like AVLT board members, have a responsibility to make sure those restrictions are enforced. Since Rowe has chosen to write this long diatribe against the AVLT and its former and current board members, it would behoove him to have his facts straight and present them accurately.

Steve and Janet Snyder


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(Saturday, February 29) In the spring of 1946 shortly after the war ended I climbed over what was left of the Warsaw ghetto but I did not find anything of interest, mostly bricks and mortar.

A note to David Severn, Philo: In November a Democratic candidate in order to win must receive a majority of Electoral College votes from two or three states that they lost in 2016 — Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Montana, or Arizona. Will a democratic socialist with a call for a revolution have a chance to win? Probably NOT. How about a homosexual married to another homosexual? Probably NOT. Will Joe Biden who seems to be unexciting at this point have a chance? It's possible. Will Elizabeth Warren have a chance? Possibly if she has improved since New Hampshire and does well in California. I urge you to vote for Warren on March 3.

If I were to win the president's race in 2020 the first thing I would do would be to issue an executive order in the library of congress to print to which category a book belongs on the lower right hand corner of the cover. This will make it much easier for libraries and book shops to place the books where readers can locate them. Reprints should also be included and shelves marked with the categories.

Why do books with room for margins on the outside of pages not have enough margin space on the inside pages? One has to get their nose down beneath the cleavage in order to read easily. Anyone publishing such a book will be transported. In England this means sent to prison. Here among the gringos they will be sent to Huntsville ,Texas for a pre-ex (a final analysis before execution).

Now we will return to our story of the Anderson Valley Advertiser versus the grape. Miss Fashauer chose to proceed westward while the Scaramella fella headed east. In the second grade in Ms. F. was asked to bring an orange to school to demonstrate that the world was round. The teacher ate the orange. Ms. F. decided that it would be foolish to climb up the steep hill going by way of Hawaii instead of taking the great circle route by way of the Aleutian Islands which was more level. And there she goes pulling her folded up bicycle strapped to a frame with two wheels and a notebook to be used to write down all the best restaurants she encountered complete with menus, wine lists and décor. 

Meanwhile Mr. S. left Boonville pulling his two-wheeled frame with his bag of clubs strapped on and carrying the list of golf courses he was invited to visit. Before he reached the top of the Coast Range he had had enough of this method of travel and like Jack London and William O. Douglas who had a scholarship to Columbia Law school but no money, found an empty boxcar and jumped in. When the train reached the Chicago stockyards the railroad bulls chased him into the swine department. He ran, still pulling a bag of clubs until he reached the Upton Sinclair Memorial Library and coffee shop.

Ms. Fashauer headed toward an Alaska ferry when she ran into Rex Gressett who was to fill in for the Scaramella fella while he was gone. Gressett thought this was a chance of a lifetime but soon tired of hearing that his duties included watching for Philbrick letters, editing, and making sure they were printed in a timely manner, eliminating other letters if there wasn't enough room for both.

Ms. F. found upon arriving in Alaska that there was no transportation through the islands, just jump from fishing boat to island to fishing boat to island. Nothing to eat but fish using fish as a pillow at night. The proverbial lightbulb went off and ms. Fashauer vowed to open an outdoor fish stand next door to the Savings Bank of Mendocino County.

Readers will recall the rules -- no air travel and a checkpoint in Bali and Nantucket Island. Mr. S. thought he should skip a planned trip to the Country Music Hall of Fame ("if it ain't country, it ain't music") and Hooters on Charleston's waterfront and proceeded to Nantucket where he encountered Philbricks underfoot everywhere he went. "I led three lives," Philbricks, Nathan Philbrick, author of several books on 19th-century maritime events, whale boats, shipwrecks, explorations. Whenever S’mella entered a Starbucks on Nantucket he asked if any of the employees knew where their name originated. None did. No one in Ukiah about new either.

When Anne Fashauer reached Attu, the last island on the Aleutian chain, she received a little lagniappe. Docked at Attu’s only pier was the luxury yacht LaBumba owned by Fox News. When Ms. F told the captain she represented the Anderson Valley wine industry in a Boonville to Boonville race, he agreed to sign her on as cabin girl until they reached Japan. Everything is different in Japan. With an aging population, more adult diapers are sold than baby diapers and all shopping carts have a magnifying glass and an emergency bell attached. In Japan all west to east and north to south are down hill which enabled Ms. F. to ride her bicycle all the way south through the entire country. If a money transfer arrives from Anderson Valley Ms. F. will be able to continue her trip through the Spice Islands where she is expected to be welcomed by the Sultan. This completes the first leg of the race for both contestants.

Ralph Bostrom


PS. Re: the ballot measure to repeal the increase in the gasoline tax: wealthy and affluent people voted for it. Low income people voted against repeal. The Democratic establishment doesn't want Bernie Sanders to be elected because he would support the low income voters on issues like this. Every congressional district has some kind of military spending. That's why it's 100% too high.

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Dear Editor:

Thank you for running Richard Tootreese Jeske's "High School Back In The Day." His account of what it was like those many moons ago to go swimming naked during all-boy dips at community and school pools was both funny and thought-provoking. I appreciated his insights into his experience and his way of reminding of us somehow of a somewhat more innocent time. I had somewhat the same experience back in the day going to the local YMCA with my brother and our dad and all of us jumping into the pool bare as the day we were born. It was kind of weird for us, as boys, but then turned out to be strangely okay. I always do appreciate your printing the historical pieces on occasion in the AVA. They do provide a delight to read and are oft-times a pleasing and needed momentary distraction from our current political, social and pandemic virus woes! 

Thank you, 

Steve Hellman, Instructor of English, 

Mendocino College, Ukiah

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To the Editor:

What’s up with the landlords of Longs Plaza? It is really in poor shape. Graffiti in the back of the building on the sign which has been there for months. The landscaping is dead and very unattractive, buildings need paint, benches need fixing, and sidewalks need cleaning. This complex is in poor shape, what a shame, with some great stores and restaurants among it.

Barbara Valente

Redwood Valley

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I was given Vic in 2000 from the Ratcliff Ranch in Gualala. She'd been a dressage jumper for their teenage daughter when I got her at age 12. She was the smallest horse who ever owned me, and the biggest surprise. She wound up being one of the best horses I ever had and she gave me nothing but fond memories. Funny how pleasing she turned out to be with no expectation at all. Thank you to all the kind folks who helped with Vic's passing on leap year Saturday 2020: Josh Jordan, Jed Adams, Ernie Pardini; and Floriane and Jeane at the stables. Thanks also to Aurora and Arturo Bucio for arranging and assisting me with her burial in a timely, professional, respectful, caring manner, and to Greg Ludwig for saying "yes" without a moment's hesitation, in providing an easily accessible burial spot for internment. I had the old girl for 20 of her last 32 years - the longest relationship of my life and one of the most satisfying! Vic always did what I asked of her... a one-of-a-kind really good mare. She'd been in a few Point Arena Parades, Garberville Rodeo, regular picnics out to the Point Arena Lighthouse, the Whale Bar in Point Arena, and even the Blue Room Bar in Garberville. The old girl got around! Thanks, old Vic, for a nice long ride. Happy trails! 

Here's an AVA article I wrote about her back in 2015: "A Horse Walks Into A Bar"

With much appreciation to all you kind souls,

AbraKaDebra Keipp


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I watched President Trump’s town hall meeting on Thursday. Over his left shoulder there was a brunette back there with a smile on her face and she was one of the prettiest things I've ever seen. 

President Trump is due for a haircut, the back of his hair looks like a rooster tail and he needs a trim. But that's small compared to the great things he's been doing and will do.

Two of my great good friends who will be my friends for ever, Tony Pardini and Bobby Mayberry stopped by for a visit yesterday. We talked for about four hours on my porch about people we have known and loved who have gone away. They are great guys and I appreciate them coming by.

God bless Donald Trump.

Jerry Philbrick


PS. I got a close look at Nancy Pelosi when she was on TV the other day making a bad comment about President Trump and how he's handling the corona virus. When I was in Japan on the docks in Ukiska there were wharf rats as big as house cats. Nancy Pelosi reminds me of one of those wharf rats with a brown wig on.

I hear that cruise ships can't dock in California with passengers from other countries. Gruesome Newsom takes credit for that but it's a government rule, not a state rule, even though he will try to make it look like it is.

Proposition 13 did not pass and none of us wanted to pass. But if Gruesome Newsom does not like that it didn't pass he will pass it anyway because our votes don't count with him, just like with the death row people. We voted it down and he voted up. That's what we have to look forward to.

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Letter to Editor

The End of Mental Illness: How Neuroscience is Transforming Psychiatry and Helping Prevent or Reverse, Mood and Anxiety Disorders by Daniel Amen MD, 2020, is about what you can do to create a healthy brain. One of the 12 Guiding Principles is about meeting your brain’s needs in order to work at optimal efficiency. The needs are: physical and mental exercise, new learning, food as fuel, adequate sleep, meaning and purpose in your life, being socially connected to others, proper hydration, a strong immune system, efficient waste management system, and healthy blood flow to deliver oxygen, vitamins, and essential minerals to the brain,.

Redwood Community Services in Fort Bragg provides Healing Center classes where students receive this practical information to enhance brain and all health. This is an education and support group for people wanting to develop a healthy lifestyle with gradual and profound life changes. Each person integrates what resonates with them, into their daily life and then shares their experiences with the rest of us. We learn from each other and from the wise teachers we study together. We all need this. 

Students are going back to college, appreciating support around sobriety, eating healthier, sleeping better, choosing healthy connections with others and leaving behind the unhealthy ones, managing the inevitable stresses, resolving old issues, moving forward with their lives, and helping others along the way. People are expanding their artistic and writing creations, brainstorming ideas to solve the housing crisis, and discovering that by becoming quiet and stilling those head voices, they are in touch with their inner wisdom.

Sonya Nesch, Healing Center Teacher, 


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