- Hot & Dry
- Indian Creek Structure Fire
- Six New Cases
- Fuente Fire
- Mad Cad
- Independence Day
- Pink Cad
- Patriotic Moment
- History Remnant
- Merciless Savages
- Mask Debate
- Project Roomkey
- Variety Video
- Senior Pets
- Hotel Van
- Ed Notes
- Willits 1938
- Joe Rawles
- Willits Mills
- Giusti History
- Travelers Hotel
- McCowen Plan
- Yesterday's Catch
- The Toggery
- Wealth Tax
- Whitney Station
- Bensky's Thing
- Quadrio Bros
- Landslide Election
- Willits High
- Marco Radio
- Found Object
NEAR SEASONAL TEMPERATURES and dry weather will persist during the next seven days. Meanwhile, coastal areas will see a continued marine influence with nighttime and morning low clouds and patchy fog followed by clearing afternoon skies. (NWS)
INDIAN CREEK ROAD FIRE on the scanner at 10:08 PM. Anderson Valley Fire Department & CalFire were dispatched to 17670 Indian Creek Road for the report of a structure fire.
SIX NEW POSITIVE COVID-19 CASES AT LEGGETT FIRE STATION
Mendocino County Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan has confirmed six new positive cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) at the Leggett Fire Station in Mendocino County. In the last 48 hours (as of Saturday afternoon), twelve firefighters have been tested, with six firefighters testing positive for COVID-19. Of the six positive cases, two are from Mendocino County and four are from out of County. All six positive cases are in stable condition on home isolation and their close contacts are being quarantined. Due to the prompt response and coordination between the County of Mendocino and CAL FIRE, it is believed that this outbreak has been fully contained.
Dr. Noemi Doohan, Health Officer commented, “We are very thankful for the strong, coordinated effort between the County of Mendocino and CAL FIRE to respond to the recent oubreak at the Leggett Fire Station. Chief Gunn’s leadership in this rapidly evolving situation has been invaluable, and there is a strong indication that the outbreak has been contained due to the swift response and cooperation between the two agencies. We will continue to be vigilant in monitoring this situation until we are positive the outbreak has been fully contained.”
In response to these events, the Leggett and Laytonville Fire Stations will be deep cleaned and closed for the next seventy-two (72) hours. The County and CAL FIRE will continue to work together to test CAL FIRE staff and perform contact tracing investigations.
Chief Executive Officer Carmel J. Angelo remarked on the quick response between the agencies, “Mendocino County and CAL FIRE have been strong partners for many years, particularly since the 2017 fires devastated our community. CAL FIRE is here to protect us, and we are here to protect them. In light of these closures, we all need to remember to be firewise this 4th of July.”
For more information please visit the County website at https://www.mendocinocounty.org/community/novel-coronavirus, or contact the COVID-19 call center at (707) 272-6052.
NATIONALLY KNOWN MENDOCINO ARTIST’S WORK SPACE, HOME DESTROYED IN BLAZE
by Mary Callahan
A Mendocino-area artist whose unique ornamental work has earned him national recognition lost nearly everything in a fire that also badly injured a friend asleep at his combined home and work space Friday night.
Larry Fuente was unhurt in the 6 p.m. blaze along Comptche-Ukiah Road, but a friend pulled from the fire suffered serious injuries and was flown to the burn unit at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento, where he was said to be in stable condition, fire officials said.
The friend had been asleep in a recreational vehicle parked adjacent to the large metal warehouse when it caught fire and spread to the structure, another friend, Nicholas Wilson, said.
A neighbor pulled him out “and saved his life,” Mendocino Fire Capt. Tyler Grinberg said.
“If that person hadn’t been there to pull him out of the structure, we’d be having a very different conversation,” he said.
Fuente was inside the building and unharmed but lost some five decades of work as flames spread into his workshop jammed with boxes of plastic parts, random objects, resin and other substances used to create projects reflecting what the Smithsonian American Art Museum once described as “an obsessive interest in surface ornamentation.”
His work has been shown at the Museum of Modern Art and on the cover of National Geographic, as well. Word of the blaze spread widely among friends and residents in the area.
Grinberg said volunteer firefighters from Mendocino, Comptche, Albion, Elk and Little River fire agencies worked to try to save the structure and contents before the color of the flames informed them that the variety of materials burning was doubtless hazardous amid the superheated gas of the metal structure, and they had to switch to preventing the fire from spreading into the surrounding pygmy forest.
Cal Fire assisted more than 30 firefighters using a helicopter to carry buckets of water to drop water flames licking at the edges of dry vegetation as propane tanks in the art studio popped off periodically, Grinberg said.
Firefighters did manage to save Fuente’s famed Mad Cad art car, a 1960 Cadillac transformed by gluing on jewels, beads, mannequins, shoe soles and plastic ducks.
The car, ironically, most years serves as the centerpiece of Mendocino’s July Fourth parade, which this year was canceled because of the coronavirius pandemic, Grinberg said.
He also said that Fuente’s friend should be OK.
“I can say that we’re hopeful and confident for a recovery of that patient,” Grinberg said.
(courtesy The Press Democrat)
THE FUENTE FIRE
A friend who talked by phone with John Knoebber earlier today said he's in surprisingly good spirits and appreciating his view from the top floor of the U.C. Davis Hospital Burn Center. It's a relief to learn that he has a positive outlook despite serious burns to his legs.
From the same friend I learned that Larry Fuente was at his place when the fire broke out. He heard screams from outside and ran out to see John's RV next to the main building engulfed in flames. Larry, with help from neighbors, pulled John out of the burning van, saving his life. The RV and everything in it was a total loss.
I went to the scene today and saw that Larry's famous "Mad Cad" art car survived the fire with some warping of one tail fin. A trio of Mendocino Volunteer Fire Department firefighters were on the scene this afternoon to check for and douse any flare-ups. They said the MVFD team last night protected the car with expanding fire fighting foam, which also saved much of the workshop and garage the car was in. Much of his art was lost in the fire, which totally destroyed the main building along with everything in it. The heat from the fire was enough to soften the steel beams making up the supporting structure, allowing the metal roof to collapse into the building.
Larry was said to have spent much of the morning assessing the damage, and was at a nearby neighbor's house this afternoon. He was not burned or injured in the fire, I'm glad to say. Earlier reports that he was taken to Willits were false, and in fact he never left the fire scene until today.
Larry is understandably stressed, and is not up to talking on the phone right now. Let's give him some space to recover.
LARRY IN HIS MAD CAD
INDEPENDENCE DAY, FORT BRAGG
by Rex Gressett
In Fort Bragg, There won’t be any fireworks. No parades. If you drive through San Francisco with a Trump bumper sticker on your car you will be attacked, no question. Mobs of white college kids indoctrinated in revolutionary Marxism at ruinous expense are destroying black businesses and toppling monuments of American heroes. Senior citizens are casually beaten at random. It’s the 4th of July 2020.
In Fort Bragg, Mayor Will Lee has appointed an Ad Hoc Committee to change the name of the City and our newest Councilperson Jessica Morsell-Haye has come out swinging in strong support for a new, politically correct name. She sits on the committee along with appointed members of the mob appointed by the mayor. A revolution is erupting. But not the one they think.
Two million names are being gathered to recall California Governor Gavin Newsom. The nation's economy shattered by the Chinese virus lockdown is resurgent across the board. Not in California. In the Golden state further lockdowns are almost certain.
In the United States every newspaper, every radio station, and every cable channel are owned and controlled by SIX giant corporations. A constant barrage of crudely deceptive propaganda is blasted into every home 24-hours-a-day. We listen — but do we believe?
At the second to the last City Council meeting, Councilman Lindy Peters went off-script for a moment in an unusually reflective moment quoting George Orwell: "Every record has been destroyed or falsified. Every book has been rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And that process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except the endless present in which the party is always right.”
Lindy recovered quickly and went on to support the Ad Hoc committee dedicated to the eradication of historic memory in Fort Bragg. But Orwell's words lingered as a shadow over the meeting. "I get what you mean," said Jessica Morsell-Haye, "but…"
The 4th of July in Fort Bragg, California is a bright summer day. The crushing onslaught of tyranny seems improbable and irrational. The burning of American cities seems far away.
In the hearts and minds of a free people, the impulse to celebrate freedom stirs like the memory of forgotten love. And the fire of revolution begins to spread.
Not the one they think…
 I never had much liking for Rex and his opposition to the fishing community, but I detect a shard of patriotism in his comments lately. Keep the liberal media at bay Rex! Maybe we will be free again someday. Have a great Independence Day, the best that you can.
 Wow, that is just full of a bunch of non-truths. Crazy talk! Drive down to sf with your bumper sticker - you will be safe. You’re allowing government to divide us by feeding each side crazy talk that makes for posts like this. Don’t believe the cool aid. We are all people who care about each other. I’m sorry you are believing this stuff - these lies. I’m sure it gets you upset if you think it is true. Don’t be misled. remember the protest in Ukiah during the election when a guy drove past the court house with a trump sticker and a group of people swarmed his truck screaming at us? You have no clue huh? I’ll personally give you $1000 if you let me slap a trump sticker on your car and drive to SF and back with nobody messing with you. Guaranteed.
INDEPENDENCE, TAKE TWO
It's the Fourth of July, 2020, America's Independence Day. In my Wisconsin town, the fireworks have been cancelled due to coronavirus, but I'm fine with that. It's not really about pyrotechnics and parades and politicians. My feeling for America runs damned deep, but it's personal, and there's lots more to it than fireworks or waving a flag.
This year's Fourth of July seems different — and in a good way. Do you feel it? Sure, we have a brain-dead anti-President in the White House, ignoring countless enormous problems, and doing his damnedest to make things worse. But for the first time since I don't know when, there are also signs that America might be coming closer to its ideals.
We've always been told that we're all created equal, but the law has always left some of us behind. It's thrilling to see people gathering by the thousands to demand the equality we've been promised.
This spring I've walked with protesters on a couple of afternoons, and we're in a profoundly patriotic moment. What could be more American than wanting liberty and justice for all?
To everyone on the streets speaking up for that principle, I say ’Thank you for your service.’ And to everyone who's opposed, I say cordially, ‘Bite my big one.’ Let's make America greater than she's ever been.
PS. When the AVA comes in the mail every week, I stash it in my bathroom. When I'm constipated the papers are quickly read, but for an old man I've been real regular lately, so I'm running a few weeks behind on my AVAs, sorry.
Anyway, I'm reading a little filler-blurb at the bottom of page 6, June 17 2020, and I'm thinking it's OK but not really up to snuff for the fine Anderson Valley Advertiser. Also, it sounds vaguely familiar. And then about 2/3 of the way through, I glance at the byline and it's by me, from 1998. Sheesh. Readers deserve better than me. Raise your standards.
NORMA WATKINS WRITES:
Our Declaration of Independence. We watched "Hamilton" last night. Recommend signing up for Disney+, if only to see this amazing work. (And you couldn't get these seats for $1,000). Seeing people of color as our founding fathers is especially moving in this time. What kind of nation might we have if we hadn't built it on the backs of enslaved people?
Hadn't noticed in the Declaration of Independence, we accuse King George thusly: "He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions."
The real inhabitants of "our frontiers" were, of course, those Indians. And we too might get merciless if our land, lives, and culture were stolen.
Project Roomkey has been extended one month. Project Roomkey is a collaborative effort by the State and County to secure hotel and motel rooms for vulnerable people experiencing homelessness.
Health and Human Service Agency Special Investigation Unit personnel will be enforcing health orders this weekend, including on the coast. If they are unable to resolve concerns, they'll contact the Sheriff for further problem solving.
THE VIDEOS of the Anderson Valley Variety Show are all up on youtube now - both nights, first and second halves. If you scroll down on the page of each video, you'll see the list of acts which link directly to each act if you want to watch a particular one. Many thanks to Mark Weaver for all the work and magic of editing and videographer Chad Rea and trailer full of fantastic gear.
UKIAH SHELTER PETS OF THE WEEK
Santana and Athena came to the shelter together. We think they may have been backyard dogs, and we’re looking to find new homes where they will be loved and pampered. Both dogs are 8 years old and eligible for the shelter’s SENIOR DOG DISCOUNT.
Santana is young-at-heart, energetic and wiggly. Athena is a sweetheart and friendly with other dogs. We think both dogs will do well in a home with kids. Benefits of adopting a senior dog are many: they tend to require less training, are lower energy with less exercise needs, and enjoy hanging on the couch with their guardians.
To find out more about Santana and Athena, visit mendoanimalshelter.com. While you’re there, you can read about our services, programs, events, and updates regarding covid-19 and the shelters in Ukiah and Ft. Bragg. Visit us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/mendoanimalshelter/ For information about adoptions please call 707-467-6453.
HOTEL VAN, WILLITS
A MAN named Ronald (Ronnie) Baumiester died late in June. Notice of his passing was not published, although he was a native of Mendocino County from Comptche.
I guess there was no one left to go to the trouble of an obituary or, as so many people who pass without notice, nobody cared. I tried to visit him in jail but he didn't want to see me. I, for one, am sorry to see him go, not that I'm about to throw on the sackcloth and black armband. But with Baumeister's passing there goes a man who probably knew where two bodies are buried, two bodies whose life trajectories were much like Baumeister's in their marginality, but unlike Baumeister, two men who had families and friends who definitely missed them. I may be assuming too much, but I assume investigators tried to talk to Baumeister during Baumeister's periodic stays in the County Jail for public intoxication. All three men, Baumeister and the two vanished seniors, were employed by James DeNoyer at his Westport mini-ranch. Baumeister and the two old guys tried to care for DeNoyer's horses without their employer furnishing the funds and supplies to keep the animals healthy. The two old guys complained and disappeared. Baumeister kept his mouth shut and lived on. DeNoyer was tried for animal abuse and basically got away with it. Last heard from, he lives in Lake County. https://www.theava.com/archives/83
WATCHED some of the president's 4th of July fandango on CNN. Pretty chintzy affair, with a few planes flying over, a half-dozen sky divers who had Old Glory on upside down, and a sparse crowd looking on, many of them, like Dear Leader and Mrs. Leader, unmasked. CNN's talkers, their neon teeth flashing, talked through their noses and said nothing at all. "I want Wolf! Give me Blitzer!" At least with Wolfie you get some physical comedy as he scoots around the Situation Room in the big chair. Later on Saturday night, we were promised entertainment by people I've never heard of, not that my ignorance means much since I tuned out at Sinatra.
HE MAY STILL BE WITH US and might, at his ancient age, be offended by my memory of the story he told me, told me as an aside, whatever the subject may have been but whatever it was but the subject didn't start out to be his wife. "She was a tall gal, almost as tall as me and I'm a little over 6 feet. I was no bargain as a husband. I always had a job but not the kind of job that provided her the luxuries she seemed to feel were her due, although she was from a blue collar family like me and should have known we wouldn't be flying off to Monaco for dinner. For a few years we got along ok, but she was unhappy and it was only a matter of time before we split the blanket. One night I split that sucker in half! What happened was this: I was trying to jolly her up. I admit I'd had a few beers. [Ed note: knowing him, make that a case, at the least.] We'd been watching the X Files on tv, and I was bored, so I started singing Long Tall Sally just loud enough for her to hear. She laughed a little, and believe me the only time she laughed otherwise was when I screwed something up, like the night I fell on my face coming through the front door. She laughed for a week at that one. Anyway, figuring she was in as good a mood as she ever would be I popped what turned out to be my last question: 'Honey, there's something I've always wanted to do, but I'm going to need your cooperation.' She was instantly suspicious, but I figured what the hell, and went ahead. 'Can you stand at the end of the bed tonight and pretend you're an old growth redwood, and I'll pretend I'm a logger and pretend-chop your legs off, and then you slowly fall face-first onto the bed?' She stared at me for quite a while before she said, 'I wouldn't give you the satisfaction.' I moved out the next day. Haven't seen her or even talked to her in forty years."
MAIN STREET, WILLITS, 1938
THE MURDER OF JOE RAWLES, 1871
Joe Rawles and the Rawles family came to the Anderson Valley after the Civil War from Missouri where, ancient rumors whisper, he was friendly with the James Brothers, one of whom, the sane one, Frank James, visited his old homeboy in Boonville.
Married to Elbe Gibbons. Three children — Lawrence Rawles (Singley), Allie Rawles (Lawson), Joseph William Rawles.
Joseph William Rawles, grandfather of this writer, lived a very short life, in fact, 27 years. He was murdered in Cloverdale walking up to the front door of his brother-in-law's house, Joe Gibbons, who was sent to San Quentin but was paroled for his efforts in the big fire in keeping inmates from escaping. Paroled by Governor Waterman, Gibbons went to Texas where he committed another murder, escaped and turned up in Modoc County at Lookout and got into a gunfight with the sheriff of the county. They both raised up from behind a big rock and cut each other down, both dead. The rock was pointed out to me \by his grandniece, a Ms. Livingston, in 1915, who lived with her mother and father in Lookout. Her mother was a niece of Joe Gibbons.
His son Joseph Williams (‘Big Sorry’), my father, married Hatty Vestal, an old Southern family of Virginia — Vestal and Duff families, who took part in the great Civil war. Grandfather Jeff Vestal was captured by the North and in the first Battle of the Wilderness and was imprisoned at Fort Delaware for the duration. The Duff men (my grandmother's family) distinguished themselves throughout the war except for one (Mitch) who did not believe in war so he hid out for the duration. Dave went north and fought for that side. John was a staunch Southerner. Both were looking for Mitch. If either would have found him they would have turned him in, however his mother aided him by concealing him in a cellar under the house.
A large group of descendents from this family were Terry Miller, Stevens and a few more. Mostly around Affingdon to this day, Nine children were born of this match of who eight are still around. Number one, Lenore, then Beryl, Garth, Lyle, Joe, Norris, Geraldine and Renni. Hannah died at the age of 18 months. She was between Lyle and Joe.
A large group of descendents arose from these eight children, in fact about 40.
Joe Rawles Sr. was a dreamer, in fact the future looked a lot brighter over the horizon. He liked chasing rainbows, tried farming on the approximately 100 acres left to him by his father but with no success or real interest for the job. As a teen boy I helped him considerably in one venture raising alfalfa hay. By irrigating we raised excellent crops, three a year, but there just didn't seem to be a market for it. This venture was the last farming he did. In fact it turned out his sister held a mortgage on the place and foreclosed. I think by common consent. He then worked as a woods superintendent for the firm of Kamm and Hedges of Petaluma in 1920. His sister let us live in the old house where all of us were born which burned to the ground during the time he was working for Kamm and Hedges. This firm's future wasn't long duration and it closed in 1921. He then got a wood contract for the Northwestern Lumber Company of Willits, conducting woods operations Irmulco.
Grandfather: born in 1845. Died January 24, 1872 (murdered). Married to Elbe Gibbons, 1868.
Three children by this marriage. One daughter Lawrence Rawles Singley, one son Joseph William Rawles, Father, born October 21, 1871 -- died April 21, 1932. One daughter, Allie Rawles Lawson.
Joseph William Rawles II, brother of Robert Henry, 1/23/1845 to 11/14/1911, Mary Alexander Nathan, 6/15/1853 to 1929, Sarah Thomas Edward 9/24/1848 to 12/25/1913, Gabriel Susan Rawles (Ornbaun), John C. Jane Rawles (Burger).
LUMBER MILLS, WILLITS
GIUSTI LOOKS BACK
Did anybody out there see the Ukiah Daily Journal of Friday, June 19? They had a picture of my family hacienda on the front page. It now abides on North Franklin Street next to Fort Bragg City Hall. However "Fort Bragg historians" are a little clumsy as to the building origins. It now and has for over 25 years been occupied by assembly and state Senate offices. The people who work there usually are very helpful. The building was originally built by my great granddad Scott "The Growler" Saunders about 1884. It first stood on the corner of Main Street and Redwood Avenue where Coast to Coast Hardware is today. My grandma Claire Saunders was first in my Crow family there in 1885. Her two younger sisters and three young brothers were born there as well. Her four older siblings were born north of 10 Mile River in what was the native village of Keibaselah. All that’s there now is my pal Sally Ottoson’s wine bar. My great-grandad married my great-grandma Suzanne Hudson Youngcault, born 1855 in Cuffy’s Cove near Greenwood, at Keibaselah with patriarch Judge Frank Allen Whipple presiding in 1880. Mr. Whipple came “around the horn” from Massachusetts law school and was a founding daddy in Fort Bragg, thus the name of Whipple Street. Probably one of the first Northern California judges also.
This landmark Fort Bragg house was the Saunders home and combination trading post. The Growler sold enough moonshine, guns, ammo, horses, chickens and eggs and of course blackberry pie to build his own saloon -- one of the first license in Northern California -- around 1895 that also stood in the Coast-to-Coast vicinity. I guess old Fort Bragg soldiers were good customers.
Granddad Growler was also the last foreman of the Union Lumber Company that first opened at the mouth of the 10 Mile river. He was associated with the Johnson clan that owned the mill and moved it to Fort Bragg around 1883 where it stood as the second largest lumber mill in the world and closed around 20 years ago. It went from Union Lumber to Boise Cascade and finally Georgia-Pacific and absorbed two different unions with the last one dissolved in the 1940s after armed gunbattles and fistfights between union and nonunion Fort Braggers living in the same neighborhoods!
We were fortunate as the old logging town of Navarro around 1910 and Rockport around 1950 both burned completely down due to union strikes and other struggles at Navarro. I know what I'm talking about because both my granddads were born in Navarro around 1888. My father was born in Greenwood, now Elk, in 1970. My mom and I were born at the Grey Whale Inn and my second oldest daughter Danielle was one of the firstborn in the new hospital. Four generations born right in Fort Bragg and at least five generations on the Mendocino Coast. So welcome to my history world.
My great granddad Growler and his brother, great uncle Albert, were both born near Quebec City Canada around 1825 They needed a document with date of birth from New Hampshire to pose as US citizens to open their two saloons which both fell down in the 1906 earthquake along with our new big house that sat where Purity is today. One Chinese fellow died in that earthquake. My grandma said it really rocked 'n rolled. The Growler rebuilt his saloon at the same site but great uncle Albert moved his to Point Arena. My grandma's little brother, my other grand uncle Albert, didn't need a liquor license as he opened the last speakeasy in Fort Bragg. He later got a license but stayed in the family for 100 years until my uncle Darrell told the Samoa Club in Ukiah.
The Growler would like a first tycoon in Fort Bragg. He either homesteaded and bought property along Main, Franklin and McPhersons (West to east) and from First Baptist Church south of Fort Bragg’s post office. His brother owned about from there south to about the Tradewinds. My family owned severa famous (or infamous) buildings in Fort Bragg: Old Louie’s Pizza, Coast Hotel, the haunted Mendoza building where my adopted uncle John ‘Brick’ Carnac was born in 1945, Brick was full-blooded Yugoslavian but spoke fluent Italian. My grandma owned an old-style ice cream parlor that sat where the Tiptop Lounge is now, built by another of my Italian (or Roman) uncles, Zio Giusti, and another Crow uncle built the Fort Bragg bakery. My mom was making moonshine for my uncle Albert ‘Ab’ Saunders at four years old and would deliver doughnuts with whiskey bottles in the bottom of her basket. She taught old Dominic Carini how to make ‘shine and how to barbecue. They were real live roaring 20s kids.
My paternal granddad Gabriel Giusti had a vineyard out Vinegar Ridge Road in and made wine when he wasn't teaching Jerry Philbrick how to log! My maternal granddad, Auer Mehtln and made the beer and built the best houses in Fort Bragg mostly up and down Corry, McPherson, Harrison streets and of course the Giusti pavilion on Winifred Way that was originally just north of Fort Bragg city limits at the site of old Fort Bragg high school where my dad set track record and Pavionis, Pivers and uncle Brick set all the rest.
My granddad also built the first house at Cleone and was the first Fort Bragg person to serve in France during World War I. He was born in Navarro about 1888 and eventually served in a chemical warfare unit sabotaging the Kaiser's nerve gas factory with famous major leaguers Ty Cobb and Christie Mathewson.
After World War I Auer, who pitched semi pro and in the Cuban leagues, stayed a few years with Cobb building houses in Georgia and teaching Cobb how to hit slopitch and underhand style pitching, thus prolonging the Georgia Peach’s great career. Then he hopped a freight train around 1921 and cruised back and built our Corry Street mansion now owned by my pal and classmate the beautiful former Miss Pamela Dragness. Hey Pam, where did grandma's lemon trees go? Youngcault footnote: a few years back in Montana I met and ran with one of Ty Cobb's granddaughters who was quite spunky like her granddad. Auer's brother, my uncle Charlie, was also a carpenter and Mendoza County’s most famous duck hunter who also pitched pro ball and was one of Fort Bragg high’s first basketball stars and fought with Teddy Roosevelt in the Spanish-American war under an assumed name. He was never married, had several kids and was supposedly born in Navarro around 1880 and died at the Grey Whale Inn around 1970 but nobody knows for sure as uncle Charlie never let the government know who he was. He had no birth certificate, no social security card, no insurance and of course no marriage license, no pension. He always worked for cash and was for years Henrietta Smith’s bodyguard at 10 Miles Ranch, and he had no driver’s license. He always had an old redneck pickup truck with a shotgun and a ferocious junkyard dog riding shotgun.
Only two cops in Fort Bragg in those days. Which one would be dumb enough to ask uncle Charlie to see his no license! The only proof the United States has of his existence is his tombstone at Rose Memorial right across from my uncle Britton’s Greenwood Ione monument. Britton's tombstone says he was born in Missouri although as a toddler he lived there, but he was actually born near Fort Union in Crow territory, now Montana, and lived in Nevada about 20 years and led the US Army to find the stranded Donner Party. There is another Greenwood west of there named after Britton's dad, the mountain man Caleb Greenwood. Caleb's statue with his wife, my aunt Batchika Youngcault Greenwood, and my great grandma Sonny Youngcault were also born near Fort Union, Gardner Hudson Hall stands overlooking the Truckee River on Virginia Avenue which is what is now called Reno.
My family founded Truckee River city (Central Reno) in 1840. My great granddad on the Crow side, Captain James Hudson Hall, showed up in 1865 and moved us to Perkins Camp, the native village on the big river east of Mendoza city, thus my grandma Suzanne Hall Saunders was born near Greenwood where we raised horses. My own ma helped train the famous Seabiscuit at Ridgewood south of Willits and Seabiscuit colt was named Seabiscuit Jr., one of the first horses I rode at age 4. Welcome to the Youngcault history world.
Why not change Fort Bragg's name to Glass Beach, California? Keep Fort Bragg high, my alma mater, class of ‘72, as is. Believe it or not I was a scholar/athlete there where I played four years varsity baseball winning two league titles, played a little football as starting linebacker in the first annual Fort Bragg Turkey Bowl in 1968, was freshman tennis champ with James Britt and Charles Huber there. Played a lot of basketball, mostly in Fort Bragg men's city league where I was the youngest player coach in Fort Bragg history piloting the Coast Hotel Eagles at age 21. I also played pool tournaments mostly at the Golden West & Co. Huber and I once ran our own bowling league. Terrence Huber and I were both scouted by the Giants but instead I became a part-time giant scout — I developed my spitball too late — and retired sportswriter, my sports column can be found in the pages of the past old weekly Mendocino Beacon called Fort Bragg Sports by David C. Giusti from 1966 to 1970.
Terrance went on to coach semi pro softball and build houses with the artist Tim Taubold. I've built houses with him also, about his first, on Odom Lane. Chris Huber had a long career as high school and college basketball coach. He sure was a tough cookie in tennis and baseball and a three-year all-star all-league basketball player.
Chris and I played semi-pro-basketball in Italy in the summer of 1971 when we attended University in Rome and Venice on foreign exchange student status visas with our Italian teacher Mrs. Maria Huber (Chris and Terrence’s mom). I also served America on a debate team in London and Chris and I entered dart tournaments and watched cricket games all day. London's the bomb, and we had great grandstand cricket seats. We also won a lot of Guinness stout beer shooting darts, a game invented in Crow territory.
Also in Paris we met this cool cat who was hiding there after a military coup. He bought a lot of drinks and we were twisting like Sonny Liston. This "general" from Morocco looked just like Sonny Liston.
Our class of 1972 had the most stellar branch of athletes ever in Fort Bragg high school history and of course my dad Billy ‘Pav’ Pavioni had the only game close to us in the 1930s. I was a late developer so I was happy just to make the team, sat on the bench and cheered my pals on. We had the likes of Tommy Heitmeyer, a football and track star. He was on one baseball championship team with me and could have easily made pro baseball. He quit for reasons that he and I and his brother Doug only know. Doug and Tommy were also great bowlers from the wiki Munson clan. Also along with myself, Brick, the track and tennis star, and Huber, we had David Pavioni, a five-year college football player at Santa Rosa JC and Chico State, Gary Romeri, a full ride Chico State baseball player, the late Randy Silvera all-league in three sports, Kenneth Richards all-league in the same three sports and last of the Fort Bragg Loggers where he was a gold glove center fielder at age 14!
There were lots of others: Paul Williamson, a three sport varsity player from sophomore to senior in football, basketball and baseball, Richard Nowlin who set football records, John Sullivan all-league football and basketball player. Greg Margison who also played football at Santa Rosa JC and Ron Wooden, all-around utility player with track records. Fred Roach and Timmy Salo were good players who quit sports to salmon fish. Timmy probably still is the most avid baseball fan in Fort Bragg. Then those younger than us, may he rest in peace, was Jason Jacomella, the greatest Fort Bragg teenage baseball player I ever saw or coached in little league. He also quit baseball to salmon fish and was lost at sea. That was the quiz in my era -- who was best at baseball: Jacomella, Heitmeyer, Richards, Romeri, Pavioni or me?
Also worthy of mention is switch-hitting Roy Perkins from the class of 1973. Me and Roy played on basketball and championship baseball teams together and I think he still might be coaching college football where he might have coached distant cousin Aaron Rodgers.
One more high school football my school footnote: I was Honor Society for three years, student council two years and two years California Scholarship Federation member. I also logged for boss man Jerry Philbrick. Thanks Jerry for hiring me when nobody else would. And I only half-rolled that skidder. If I hadn't been alert I wouldn't be writing this today. Yes Jerry you always paid good and on time. And I always enjoyed you breaking up the barroom brawls. Aren't we glad that was part time?
David C. Youngcault Giusti
Mendocino County Jail
PS. Another hint on renaming Fort Bragg. The Greenwoods were mountain men (some were half Crow) and never owned slaves. Why not rename Fort Bragg to North Greenwood? Lots of Fort Bragg old-timers were born in the other Greenwood so it might fly.
TRAVELERS HOTEL, WILLITS
THE NEW NEW GOLD RUSH?
To the Editor:
Remember Measure “AF,” the 2016 voter initiative that would have opened almost every area in Mendocino County to commercial cannabis operations? AF was defeated by a wide margin in every Supervisorial District.
Though County voters supported legalization, they didn’t want cannabis to be the next “gold rush” at the expense of the County’s environment – our open spaces, unpolluted night skies, shared rural values, or the health of the County’s wildlife and the survival of salmon and steelhead in our streams.
In the wake of the AF defeat, the Board of Supervisors spent a year crafting a County Ordinance that went a long way to accomplishing just that – legalization, but with strong environmental protections. The Ordinance gave existing local growers a head start in the permit process, and in most cases the ability to continue to operate where they were, regardless of the zoning district. It also provided a path to legalization for new growers willing to stay small and be protective of the environment.
In these last three years the County Cannabis Unit, now at the Planning and Building Department, has issued about 300 permits. At the same time the Department has happily accepted close to a thousand more non-refundable application fees, in many cases in blatant violation of basic parameters of the Ordinance, and given the applicants a green light to operate while their applications are “under review.”
Now, Supervisor McCowen wants to throw out the Ordinance. “It isn’t working,” he says. Instead, he wants to “mirror” the State’s regulations, and leave environmental review to the discretion of Planning Department’s Cannabis Unit. That’s “code” for opening the County’s rangelands and other restricted zones to new cultivation; allowing unlimited permits per parcel; and allowing cultivation acreage to grow right along with whatever the State’s allows.
Those approximately 300 growers who actually did get their permits, abided by the Ordinance, value small, craft operations, and are paying their fees and taxes are ironically the likely casualties of the McCowen plan, along with the County’s natural environment. The McCowen plan gets rid of the pesky restrictions of the Ordinance and rolls out the welcome mat to the short-term, big-time operators wanting to cash in on the “Mendo-grown” name. To quote one such out-of-county hopeful, “We would hate to see other counties expand and loosen California cannabis regulations, while Mendocino gets left behind.”
If you support the goals of our existing Ordinance and are sick of non-enforcement, let the Supervisors know that you oppose this secretive end-run around the will of the people. The Supervisors will take up this critical issue at their Thurs. July, 21st meeting, (despite barriers to public participation!) Send written comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Then, please register to “telecomment” at the County’s website before the day of the meeting in order to speak to the Board on that day. If you’re unsure of the process, call the Clerk of the Board, at 463-4221, and ask for specific instructions. “See” you there. Thank you.
CATCH OF THE DAY, July 4, 2020
CHRISTOPHER ACKERMAN, Ukiah. Assault with deadly weapon not a gun, controlled substance where prisoners are kept.
OSCAR BERNAL, Ukiah. Domestic battery, contempt of court, probation revocation.
CALVIN COMARSH, Eureka/Fort Bragg. Felon-addict with firearm, ammo possession by prohibited person.
TERESA EVANS, Winters/Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
ANTHONY LUCAS, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
LUIS MARTIN, Oakland/Potter Valley. DUI, no license.
TONI PAUL, Ukiah. Domestic battery, resisting.
JORGE ROSALES, South Gate/Willits. Grand theft.
KYLE SCHIMKA, Redwood Valley. DUI.
THE TOGGERY, WILLITS
GET THE TUMBRILS ROLLING
"Reopening" has created a predictable - and completely preventable - coronavirus resurgence. Low income people desperate to pay for food and rent are forced to go to deadly virus-saturated jobs. Further, as the poor have had their hours and wages cut, the rich accumulate. According to Forbes, the net worth of the 600-plus U.S. billionaires has increased 15% to $3.4 trillion during the pandemic.
As even some rich people are starting to say, this pandemic cries out for a wealth tax. It is despicable to force working people to risk their lives to survive simply because they are poor. Billionaires should be taxed a small amount of their income and the revenue used to pay low income people so they can self-isolate, and small business owners so that their businesses - and jobs - will still exist when danger has past. This would not just protect the poor. It would protect us all as people stay home and "flatten the curve". It would also protect the economy from further tidal waves of bankruptcies, unemployment, and misery. It would hurt no one and help millions.
We know Trump and Republicans won't even consider the idea, but what do Biden, Pelosi and the Democrats say? Silence as usual. Despicable.
Emily R. Feldman
Larry Bensky has gone too far. Coyote puppies and nursing bear mothers my rear end! Has he forgotten Timothy Treadwell? They found his and his girlfriend’s remains in the bear’s stomach. As for coyote puppies -- just ask my neighbor about her cats and chickens.
So what is Mr. Bensky's thing? Does he “murder” cows when he eats hamburgers? I'll bet he likes chicken. Just think of all those baby chickens. But then again he could be a vegetarian and enjoy killing plants. No wonder Bensky lost his job in the KPFA purges.
QUADRIO BROS, WILLITS
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Is it possible that Trump could pull off in 2020 what Nixon did in 1972? That time was certainly different than now, with huge protests against the Vietnam war, but racial tensions were also rampant and there was much violence and chaos as in the LA riots of ’65. Then came the Chicago riots in ’68. Then in May of 1970 four students were shot dead at Kent State in Ohio, followed by the shooting of blacks at Jackson State in Mississippi a week or so later.
Now, also in 1970, we had the Hard Hat riot in NYC where construction workers beat the hell out of protesters. Of course nothing like this has happened now, with mostly the police themselves taking the beat down, shamefully enough. David Kuhn has a book out about that riot and its political ramifications. It’s titled just that, ‘The Hard Hat Riot’.
Back to my opening question. As we all know, Nixon won by a Landslide in 1972, vowing that law and order would prevail. I don’t believe that today’s turmoil matches that of those days, although it’s been quite disturbing and surprising. But in the 60’s and 70’s they didn’t want to totally cancel the culture and erase history, so in that way today’s protests appear much more dangerous.
The Covid virus complicates the scenario. Without it, and after all the rioting, Trump could bury Biden and make him the McGovern of 2020. Or, has Trump already buried himself?
WILLITS HIGH SCHOOL
I AM BEEF STROGANOFF.
"The world seems a little less funny without you in it."
The recording of last night's (2020-07-03) Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show on KNYO-LP Fort Bragg and KMEC-LP Ukiah* is right here: https://tinyurl.com/KNYO-MOTA-0391
Some distressing news, besides that Carl Reiner died: Friday morning I got via text from the on-hand engineer that Mendocino Environmental Center's (KMEC's) internet service has been interrupted with no firm reconnect date. As this internet thingy is how my show and many others' shows get to KMEC live, this particular show was not heard on the air in Ukiah but only in Fort Bragg. (If you’re solvent enough to pay the MEC's back internet bill, please do; you’ll be a real hero, and not the kind of hero that gets other people killed, like in the 2005 film Serenity, but the Carl Reiner kind of hero.) (We still have Mel Brooks, until they cancel him for being a Holocaust-denying Nazi racist for writing *Springtime for Hitler*, like vandals just painted RACIST FISH on the Copenhagen statue of the Little Mermaid, commissioned in the year 1907 and unveiled in 1913.)
And some thrilling news: I’ve been in contact with the San Francisco Mime Troupe, whose new project is a series of 25-minute edutaining radio shows titled *Tales From The Resistance*, and starting next week I'll be airing one every week, as well as other material from the magical Mime Troupe. Mimes on the radio! That’s what I’m *talking* about.
Furthermore, at https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com you'll find a fresh batch of dozens of links to not necessarily radio-useful but nonetheless worthwhile educational items I set aside for you while gathering the show together. Such as:
The true colors of ancient insects turn out to be teal and orange, the color scheme of a thousand modern science-fiction films, as though the filmmakers were clued in to this ancient secret by an interdimensional alien time traveler playing a prank on his power-mad brother that risks the destruction of the universe but what can you do? They don't hate each other, exactly, they’re just rivals in a contest that has gone on since before the beginning. We are less than ants to themâ¦ Or it might be, as a writer for Cracked.com put it, "To be fair, it’s not necessarily laziness per se. Your average colorist has to grade about two hours of movie, frame by frame, in the space of a couple of weeks.
It does'‘t take that many glances at the deadline bearing down on the calendar before you throw up your hands and say, "Fuck it. Everybody likes teal and orange!" Take the next mental step: Why does everyone like teal and orange? Perhaps because that's the color everything used to be at the dawn of oxygen-based life? Hm? After a hundred million years of anaerobic vomity slime-brown, anything would have been a drink of cool clean water, so teal and orange it is.
A short film about stoneworker Etsuro Sotoo's involvement in the construction of Gaudi's Sagrada Familia in Spain. (via NagOnTheLake)
And a lot of times you see somebody in a vehicle up in the air and you think, *That’s not flying. Call that flying? ’Cause I don’t,* like the old woman said to the filmy, fishy, smelly, seductive invading aliens wafting creepily up away from the cats in Carol Emshwiller's *Almost the End of the World*. A helicopter, for example, is just constantly frantically needily clawing at the air to keep from falling end-over-end out of the sky. But this guy is flying. No noisy motor. No seatbelt, even. He nonchalantly takes his street shoes off and puts his teevee slippers on. Dangerous? Sure, though, notice: from takeoff to landing he is in a parachute, in a box of pillows. /Leonardo da Vinci/ could see this all those hundreds of years ago and cogitate for an afternoon and make this out of stuff just lying around in Italy of those days and fly in it, or rather send a small village boy up in it first, just in case, and within a decade or two wars would have begun to be fought in the sky, and we wouldn't have had to wait so long for progress upward. We'd have cities in outer space by now, circling the sun like Kenneth Patchen's leopards made of golden wire. This man's project is the very definition of inspiring. He is a leaf on the wind. Watch how he soars.
— Marco McClean, email@example.com, https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com