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Bird’s Eye View By Turkey Vulture

 Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comforta­bly then I shall begin. Well, they did it again! Yes folks, Gloria Ross, “The Bishop of Boonville,” and her team of volunteers put on a superb evening last Satur­day for The Original Crab Feed that benefits the St. Elizabeth Seton Church It will surely be hard to beat for the 2010 Best Valley Event Award. From the always delightful social hour, where everyone seems to know almost everyone else amongst a wide assortment of over three hundred Valley folks, to the excellent Feed itself, ably complemented by some perfectly paired Valley wines from Esterlina Winery, through the raffle expertly hosted by John Schultz, to the late bar (specifically arranged as there is nowhere else to go for a cocktail in the Valley these days) hosted by the smiling and efficient Danny Kuny and his Crew, the whole night was a rip-roaring success. I was driven home at 11pm with my five-year record of being the last guest to leave this event finally at an end, but it didn’t matter. The company, food, and drink, had all been first class and at the end of the day nothing else really matters at a social gathering, does it?

My personal highlights, apart from the delicious crab, steaming hot garlic bread, and zesty salad, would include the wonderful mix of Valley people (unlike at any other pure Valley event); the raucous chant of “We Want Crab!” by about a dozen guests that a cer­tain person among them had started when he saw everyone else in the room eating and not a crab in sight for him and his friends; the stimulating and fre­quently light-hearted conversation (considering the subject matter) I enjoyed with Jesse Slotte and Ruben ‘Hopper’ Martinez (wounded veterans of Iraq and Vietnam respectively); the attentive wait-staff (apart from those first few anxious pre-crab minutes); Hummingbird winning the much sought-after prize of cuddly monkey and vase stuffed with biscotti; a never-before-seen voluptuous woman whispering breath­lessly and suggestively to me as I stood around holding that same toy, “I love your monkey”; volunteer Bill Holcomb, having finally sat down and enjoyed his own crab feed, getting up once again to continue clearing stuff away; and Bill Teague announcing with pride, “This is fantastic. I grew up with most of these peo­ple, it’s just great!” Yes, it certainly was a very special night and many thanks are extended to all who made it happen.

The next day was Super Bowl Sunday, the only event that truly unites the national gaze in this coun­try; it’s become a de facto national holiday in effect. Despite the usual excessive amount of ads for the US Armed Forces and a highly inflammable anti-abortion one paid for by Focus on Family (despite CBS’s claim that it has Super Bowl rules against “advocacy ads”), some of the ads were quite good and the game itself entertaining. With the New Orleans Saints claiming to be “America’s Team” I was rooting for the Colts of Indianapolis and, for entertainment purposes only, had made a gentleman’s agreement with several other gentlemen that the Colts would win by at least six points. If you’ve just come out of your bunker, it fin­ished 31-17 to the no-longer ’Aints, who won their first title and cost me more than a little, truth be told.

Fresh from my defeat at the Super Bowl, for a rele­vant Quote of the Week I offer these somewhat cur­mudgeonly words from a certain George Washington: “Gambling is the child of avarice, the brother of iniq­uity, and the father of mischief.” I can only assume from this that Mr. Washington must have had his money on the Colts!

Now to a Public Service Announcement near and dear to my heart. Cheryl Schrader and her small crew of volunteers continue to do a marvelous job with the Anderson Valley Animal Rescue and her exceptional offer to spay and neuter all cats and kittens will remain open until April 1st. They are doing about 250 a month and by calling her at 895-3785 she will provide this important service FREE of charge. Please take her up on this and let’s take control of what is an increasingly serious issue. (I also have it on the best authority that Cheryl might also be able to help if it’s a dog you want to have spayed or neutered instead, call her).

On a related topic, I am still surprised at how many dogs get out of their homes and are res­cued/found only to be without tags and thus the whereabouts of their owners is difficult to find. I have mentioned this before but for about $8 (including free shipping) you can order a tag from the guys at By doing so you will have some peace of mind and it will certainly be to the relief of the person who finds your pet. Please trust me on this.

Moving on to the The Three-Dot Lounge. We had a special guest at The 3-Dot this week when Barn Owl showed up and reminded us all to bring our sweet­hearts to The Sweetheart Dance at The Grange on Saturday, February 13th. Catfish Jack and Friends will open the evening and Dean Titus and the Coyote Cowboys will follow with toe-tapping dance tunes. Tickets are $10 per person and the proceeds will go to support health care services at the Anderson Valley Health Center, where Barn Owl informs me that old folks, school kids, and even the occasional Turkey Vulture who has eaten too much crab, can get the health care they need.

I’m outta here. I have to see a man about a sheep. 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.” Humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. PS. Contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at


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