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Valley People (Oct 7, 2015)

GRATITUDE from the Terkelsens: "Thank you Anderson Valley for all your gracious help and donation to the Turk Cancer Fundraiser!  Without all of you this event would not have been the success it was.  Big Thanks to the Anderson Valley Senior Center for going above and beyond.   Thanks Again Turk and Donna Terkelsen."

ANDERSON VALLEY'S rampaging Panthers got off to a slow start against a surprisingly stout Rincon Valley Christian last Friday night at the Boonville Fairgrounds, but roared back after the first quarter to crucify the Christians, 50-13. Earlier in the week, Coach Kuny easily beat back a mini-revolt by a few of his whining starters, and the reunified 8 commenced to do a systematic deconstruction of the visitors. This Saturday may not be so easy for the Boonville boys when they take on 3-1 Upper Lake, 2pm, at the Upper Lake field.


STEPPING OVER: Come to a special mini-workshop on Sunday, October 11th at 4:30 pm at Lauren’s Restaurant with Maggie Watson, author of A Graceful Farewell: Putting Your Affairs in Order.  Utilizing the framework of her book, Watson will touch on the areas of one’s life that should be organized and information that should be made locatable to support and assist loved ones and caregivers. 'The promise of this book is that it will give you peace of mind." Copies of Watson’s book will be available for sale.

PLEASE JOIN US at the Caspar Creek Country Fair! Saturday October 17th from 12pm—3pm at the Caspar Community Center. Enjoy live music by Lafe Crick, a puppet show, story telling, kids games, face painting, food, beer and wine, a silent auction and more! $5-$20 entrance fee per family sliding scale. All proceeds benefit Caspar Creek Learning Community.

RECOMMENDED DINING: The new Chop-Chop restaurant on Standley Street opposite the County Courthouse, the only quality eating place in the County whose kitchen will still take orders at 11pm. Reasonably priced, lunch and dinner.

SORRY TO SEE Rookie-To up for sale. Karen Altaras has been in business in the center of town for so long, no matter how accommodating the new owners most of us will always associate the pretty little structure with the always charming, always helpful Ms. Altaras. For years I was able to do all my Christmas shopping at two places in Boonville — Rookie-to and Farm House Mercantile, thus avoiding entirely Mallville, Crushville and Schlocksville in one go.

TEST BLUES. Last spring California schools administered the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) test, part of the Common Core initiative. This new test replaced the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) system of yesteryear.

STUDENTS in grades three through eight, and high school juniors, were given online tests (bye bye, bubbles) divided into English and math sections. The woeful results were released earlier this month.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE facility, the test reveals, vary considerably district to district. About 30% of Mendo students met or exceeded the state-set standard for English proficiency, compared to 44 percent in California as a whole. In math, Mendo was downright sad with fewer than a quarter of Mendo’s students meeting the math “standard.”

CUE the excuses for abysmal performance: poverty, English not a first language, rustic stupefaction, standardized tests don’t tell you much, and so on, but these pathetic scores should alarm the educational "leadership." But there isn't any, really, if we're talking clarity as to what needs to be done.

UNDER THE PREVIOUS Boonville school regime, the edu-apparat would always say, "We're doing a wonderful job. Look at all the kids we send to college." Truth be told, many of our young scholars either drop out or spend their first year learning the rudiments of English-language prose and basic math, the stuff they should have mastered by their first years of high school.

THE CO-DEFENDANTS in the Yorkville shootings were arraigned yesterday in front of visiting Judge Jeffrey Tauber. Mario Godinez Gonzales and Isidro Lopez Bernal of Cloverdale were both charged with murder in the shooting death of John Doe and attempted murder of Fidel Contreras. Contreras remains hospitalized. DA David Eyster said the charges included special allegations that the crimes were committed for financial gain. The Public Defender and Alternate Public Defender were assigned the two defendants who are being held without bail. They'll be back in court on Oct. 14th at 1:30 for entry of plea. (Bruce McEwen)

TENSE TIMES here in Intoxicant County this time of year, with lots of bud and cash in the hills, and armed thugs cruising the highways and biways looking for easy scores.

EVER WONDER why our Superior Court sees a steady stream of "visiting" judges when we have 8 of our own plus a magistrate? Yes, 8 judges for a population of 90,000 people, and we still have to summon help from the judicial bullpen.

R. BOSTROM OF WILLITS, free associating, writes: "Whenever the Redwood Drive-in is willing to host a poetry reading or sponsor a tennis tournament, the County will be willing to accept two Syrian refugees to Covelo. A former editor of The Willits News, Claudia Smith ("We don't display Willits' dirty linen for everyone to see") will not be the new face on the ten dollar bill. The Times reports that popular opinion is favoring La Boca Grande, E. Roosevelt. Here's a project for you. Write a couple of paragraphs in the style of Hemingway and send them to the AVA. Let's see who does it best."

I GOT RIGHT TO WORK: I drove over the hill to Ukiah on a hot day. I was looking for the County's lead educator. He's an Italian from Point Arena. I thought about how far education has slipped since Socrates and how they poisoned him for being bisexual. I drove east to Talmage. Damaged people shuffled up and down the sidewalks in the sun. A dog was dead in front of the Talmage Market. At Mendocino County's air conditioned temple of learning, blissed out-looking people wandered around on thickly carpeted floors holding coffee cups. I said to the lady at the desk, "I want to see the boss." You can't see him, she said. He's at lunch. "It's 3:30 in the afternoon," I said. Sit down, she said. He'll be back in time to leave for the day. "Can I have something to read while I wait?" You mean like a book or a magazine? "This is the center of learning for all Mendocino County, isn't it?" That sounded like sarcasm, she said. "You're very perceptive," I said, "maybe even intuitive." Sorry, she said, we don't have any books and all the Sports Illustrateds are in the boss's office. A xylophone played Why Can't A Woman Be More Like A Man. It was the phone on the reception desk. The woman at the desk said, That was the Italian. He says he won't be back in the office today. He said to tell you he won't be in his office ever again if you're there too.


BREANA BURNS: "I am back in Wisconsin and just reading where you mention having climbed down to look at CalTrans tunneling under 128.   I did the same thing during my two-week visit to the Valley as I couldn't imagine the purpose of the 12" pipe nor the gravel-bag dam in the streambed.   I asked various people and all I got was maybe a repeat of your remark that it was in preparation for El Nino! I wish I'd had a chance to observe the tunneling, but they were all through working.   No one was there, but there was still a parked generator as well as an extension cord still running the length of the tunnel, or culvert.   That 12" pipe is suspended from the ceiling of the tunnel.   I don't get what its purpose is.   They still had a string of electric lights through the tunnel which they no doubt needed both for the tunneling as well as hanging the pipe. I was intrigued by the boulders embedded in the floor of the tunnel, obviously intended to slow and turbulate the flow, but I'm not sure how much good they would do. I hope you will do some more research and let me know what you can find out about this project.  Looked to me like a lot of money spent.   PS That is not an "unnamed seasonal stream"! That is what remains of Conn Creek, which had fish in it not that many years ago! Even its tributary, Tony Creek, from my property up Peachland Road, has a name!"

MENDO HAZMAT will be at the Boonville Fairgrounds October 16th and 17th,  9 AM to 1 PM.  Clear out your garage and out buildings of motor oil, oil filters, antifreeze, gasoline, solvents, paint thinner, paints, household and vehicle batteries, toxic cleaners, fluorescent light tubes, PCB-containing ballasts, acids, bases, pesticides, herbicides, and prescription medication.  There is a charge for compressed gas cylinders.  For more information, call 707-468-9704. (Barbara Scott)

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