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Bird’s Eye View

Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comfortably then I shall begin. Never let it be said that a Turkey Vulture is not a noble creature, particularly when it comes to admitting one’s mistakes. I recently wrote that the School Board members received health insurance through the school and that this surprised the few people in the Valley to whom the topic was mentioned. I personally thought this ‘perk’ was entirely plausible, given that the board is arguably making the most important decisions of any Valley board and was charged with designating large amounts of money to various projects. My initial source told me this was a fact. I did get a second source who also thought this benefit was quite possible. It should be mentioned that receipt of this 'perk' was not a criticism, just that it was not a well-known fact. As it turns out, it is not a well-known fact because it is completely untrue!

This was pointed out to me by a Board member who was no doubt very surprised to hear through this column that he had this health insurance when in fact he knew that he most certainly did not. My source on that was incorrect and has since been fed to the pigs as a result of his sloppy investigation work. Meanwhile, the Board member and I talked it through in a dignified manner, I apologized sincerely, and, at the end of our conversation, handshakes were made and an assurance of our continued friendship was mutually agreed upon. I will endeavor to do my best to ensure that such an error does not occur again.

With this in mind, and for your Quote of the Week, I have found a couple of relevant comments on the issue of wrongdoing, both of which suggest that one error can undo a lot of good work... First it’s the English wit and historian, Thomas Fuller who said, “A small demerit extinguishes a long and worthwhile service.” And then there is the Latin proverb, “Those who are once found to be bad are presumed so forever.” Harsh stuff and a lesson learned by a humble Turkey Vulture.

So here we are again — another Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzai, or whatever, and every year it seems to get more frantic out there. However, up here at The Nest, Hummingbird and I plan to have a relatively calm and very relaxing few days. In fact, let’s be honest, ultimately this holiday is only really for the enjoyment of a couple of groups of people. As a result of spending many Christmas holidays in San Francisco, I feel that I can state with a degree of authority that Christmas is primarily for the enjoyment of gay men (they have the best Xmas parties) and children (for all the obvious reasons). Not that there is anything wrong with this of course, but I am neither, so I will no doubt eat, drink, and be merry in my own reserved and mellow manner. Meanwhile, if you’re out Xmas shopping try to remember that I’m an XXL; otherwise fresh carrion is always good.

Public Service Announcements. Calendars and pens at the ready. #21: Useful numbers at this time of year: for road conditions and closures call 1-800-gas-road (427-7623) and for power problems and outages call 1-800-PGE (743)-5000. I just thought you should know. #22: The Quiz at Lauren’s Restaurant will take place as usual tomorrow, Dec 22nd at 7pm. Yes, it is near to Christmas, but if you’re going to be hunkered down at home with loved ones for two or three days then perhaps a night out in the Valley, sipping beer and wine, enjoying a tasty meal, and exercising the mind, would be ideal preparation. #23: An early ‘heads-up’ for the 6th Annual AV Film Festival that will take place at The Grange on Friday/Saturday, January 27th-28th. The program is as eclectic as ever with some excellent documentaries, a film for all the family on the Saturday night, and the usual assortment of socially aware and environmental films, plus the recent work of the AVHS Film Class. All the details can be found on the Festival website which has recently been updated and can be found at .

Now for Topics and Valley events from The Three-Dot Lounge — “Moans, Groans, Good Thoughts, and Rampant Rumors” from my favorite gathering place in the Valley where people gather and share their thoughts about Valley life.

…With Xmas gifts still not purchased, some regulars were in panic mode this week. ‘Look no further,’ I told them. ‘Crab Feed tickets are now available.’ The first of these will benefit the Senior Center and takes place on Saturday, January 14th — you can call Gina Pardini for tickets at 895-3609. Then it is the ‘Original’ Crab Feed on Saturday, February 4th for which you can get tickets by calling Gloria Ross at 895-3071. Both events are at The Apple Hall in Boonville and are two of the best Valley gatherings of the year; trust me on this, you can thank me later.

…The votes are in on the two ‘Best holiday season meal-deal dinners in the Valley,’ both for less than $20. Our regulars have decided on Lauren’s Restaurant’s Hot Turkey Sandwich with gravy, cranberries, mashed potatoes and green beans and The Buckhorn’s Buffalo Burger with all the fixin’s and garlic fries. Having tried them both, I wholeheartedly agree, particularly when ‘devoured’ in the company of friends while guzzling a beer or two.

Time to take my leave. Until we talk again, Keep the Faith; be careful out there; stay out of the ditches; think good thoughts; and may your god go with you. Oh, and of course, one final request, “Let us prey.” Humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. PS. You can contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at PPS. Hi, Silver Swan! behaving yourself? Hopefully not!

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