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Bird’s Eye View (Apr 15, 2015)

Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comfortably then I shall begin. Following the sad passing of Marianne Pardini, close to 300 people gathered last Saturday afternoon at The Fairgrounds in Boonville for a poignant memorial. People from the Valley’s different communities were present, all intently listening, in many cases very emotionally, as memories of Marianne were shared. She clearly had a positive impact on all kinds of Valley people, young and old, from brightlighters and back-to-the-landers, to the Mexican and old Valley family communities alike, most of whom stayed around after the service to talk with and enjoy the company of family and friends, who were all provided with a tremendously bountiful pot luck.

It was an all-encompassing Anderson Valley “community event,” more so than any I can remember experiencing previously, and Marianne's stepson Ernie Pardini perhaps best summed it up with his comment, “I know I've complained on numerous occasions about life here in Anderson Valley, but this recent tragedy has shown me once again why there is no better place in the world to live. The people in the Valley, whether old friends, acquaintances, or complete strangers, have given our family an unimaginable amount of love and support throughout this crisis. I stand in awe every time someone new stops by or calls to offer their sympathy, unable to believe how many people have cared enough to reach out. I have witnessed, despite our terrible loss, humanity at it's finest. I have been left feeling like I am blessed to live among all these incredible people.” (After Ernie’s remarks, there is no need for any other “Quote of the Week”).

Public Service Announcements. #812. The Mendocino Bookmobile returns to the Valley on Tuesday, April 21. They are here on alternate Tuesdays for 45 minutes at each of these places and times: Navarro Store 9am (for just 30 minutes); the Floodgate 12.30pm; Philo 1.30pm; Boonville (Apple Hall) 2.30pm. Phone 463-4694 for further details. #813. The AV Museum continues its spring hours of Saturday and Sunday, from 1pm-4pm. Situated in The Little Red Schoolhouse next to the Elementary School on AV Way, this is a perfect thing to do in the Valley when you have a couple of hours spare on a weekend afternoon. It is not without reason that it is generally regarded as “The Best Little Museum in the West.” #814. Need a burn permit? You can get one from the Firehouse in Boonville. Call 895-2020 for details or stop by. You will be efficiently served with a smile. #815. The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have two upcoming confirmed dates when they will be in the Valley. Thursdays, April 30 and May 14. #816. The Goat Fest and Wildflower Show will take place on Saturday, April 25 at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds in Boonville, with the Wildflower Show continuing the next day also. The event will feature a full day of Family Fun, Goat Education, and Goat Celebration and along with such fun events as “Best Dressed Goat Contest” and “Celebrity Goat Milking Competition,” there is also a schedule of workshops on two themes: Goat Dairy Products and Goat Husbandry, plus a Birria (goat stew) Cook-Off, a Zumba-thon, and a dance at The Apple Hall in the evening with Dean Titus, Susan Clark, and the Bootjack 5. If you are interested in being a volunteer, a presenter, or a vendor, please use one of these ways to connect:; on Facebook at Anderson Valley Goat Fest; or call King Goat, Jim Devine, at (707) 496-8725.

Here is the menu for the Community lunches over the next week at the Senior Center inside the Veterans Building in Boonville. The Center asks for a $6 donation from seniors and charges $7 for Non-seniors. Tomorrow, Thursday, April 16, the lunch, served by Marti Titus and her crew at Noon, will be Smothered steak, brown rice, cauliflower, apple spinach salad, and strawberry lemon squares for dessert. Then, next Tuesday April 21, the lunch will feature Roast beef, potatoes, gravy, carrots, rolls, Bulgur spinach salad, and Banana-split cake for dessert. All meals include vegetables, salad bar, and fruit, plus milk, coffee, tea, and lemonade. What a deal. it maybe the best $7 you’ll spend all week! Hopefully you will be able to attend, and remember. ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there.

Topics and Valley events under discussion this week at The Three-Dot Lounge — “Moans, Groans, Good Thoughts, and Rampant (yet surprisingly reliable) Rumors” from my favorite gathering place in the Valley.

…Goat Fest “Celebrity” news. In a special rule amendment for the goat-milking competition, Deputy Craig Walker will not be allowed to used his hoofcuffs on the goat he is milking if she proves difficult and he losing badly to his fellow competitors. Speaking of which, Dr. Logan McGhan from the AV Health Center, last seen in public display on the stage at the Variety Show being serenaded and, dare I say, mentally molested by the sassy Patty Liddy, has been added to the list of local celebrities for this competition, joining Deputy Walker, and our two school principals, Michelle Hutchins and Donna Pierson-Pugh.

…Talking of “celebrities,” a number of regulars have been wondering about the whereabouts of local scribe, Bruce McEwen, “America’s Best Court Reporter,” who though contributing his weekly crime-based “masterpiece” to the AVA, has not been seen in these parts in recent weeks. After in-depth research I have discovered that BM decided he could no longer deal with the trappings of fame that have resulted in paparazzi and autograph hunters constantly hounding him during his leisure/drinking time in the Valley and has moved to Ukiah where he is far less well known and where the bars have darker corners in which to sequester oneself than the local establishments. We here at The 3-Dot wish him well and will continue to look forward to his weekly reports on the good, bad, and ugly of Mendocino County Courthouse activity.

…Several regulars attended a special and unique event that was held last Sunday at The Grange. The latest installment in the series of Roundtable Discussions put on by the AV Historical Society. Having previously covered Valley life in the 1930s/40s in the first Roundtable back in 2012 and then the 1950s/60s during the second one held in the early spring of 2013, on this occasion it was the Valley of the 1970s that was revisited. This was done through the recollections of an entertaining discussion panel comprising a dozen Valley folks, featuring a mix of those who arrived here to start a new life at that time and who never left. Captain Rainbow, Kevin Owens, Morgan Baynham, Linda Brennan, J.R. Collins, Karen Ottobani, and David Severn, plus moderator Mary O’Brien, with those generally of a similar age who were already living here during those years and who “welcomed” the newcomers to the Valley at that time. Gary Johnson, Ernie Pardini, Beryl Thomasson, Carolyn Short and son, Jimmy. For those present it was a most enjoyable afternoon of old Valley stories and memories as once again the Valley’s remarkable past was brought to life and those not there missed a really enlightening journey down Memory Lane, one that I am quite sure many of them would have thoroughly enjoyed. Next year. the 1980s!

…From our 3-Dot regular, The Old Buzzard, comes another in his insightful series. “Signs that the Apocalypse is Approaching.” Buzzard reports, “I could go on and on about all that is wrong with the world as we approach Armageddon, and I often do, but this week how about something a little different and more positive, sort of, some classified ads for you to ponder.

Free Fox Terrier. 8 years old, Hateful little bastard. Bites. … Free puppies. Mother is a Kennel Club registered German shepherd; father is a Super Dog, able to leap tall fences with ease. … Cows and calves for sale: Never bred. Also 1 gay bull for sale.

I’m outtahere. I’ve got see a man about a sheep. Until we talk again. Keep the Faith; be careful out there; stay out of the ditches; think good thoughts; be wary of strangers with more dogs than teeth; please remember to keep your windows cracked if you have pets in your vehicle; and may your god go with you. Oh, and of course, one final request, Let us prey. Sometimes poking, often stroking, but almost always humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. (Contact me with words of support/abuse through the Letters Page or at PS. On the sheep, Grace. Hi, George; hope you and Sheila are well. And it’s a “hello darling” to Silver Swan. Behaving yourself? Hopefully not!)

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