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Bird’s Eye View

Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comfortably then I shall begin. Happy New Year! In a couple of days it’s the amateur party-goer’s Big Night Out of the Year: New Year’s Eve! That’s fine of course, but I encourage others to try and enjoy the festivities too, and wherever and with whomever they may find themselves, if some­one is behaving badly to just smile and walk away. You know it makes sense.

In a week with little news to report on up here at The Nest, or from my travels out and about in the Valley that were somewhat restricted by the holidays and the weather, I thought that I’d do something a little different. So, for your Quote of the Week, what about some quips, comments, and downright abuse of newspapers? I’m sure none of these would be aimed at a newspaper as high-minded as The AVA but knowing the machinations of some lesser principled organs of the press, the following words would appear to be very wise indeed. First let’s go with Charles Dickens’ vicious comment that newspapers are “so filthy and bestial that no honest man would admit one into his house for a water-closet doormat.” And almost as damning are the words of author Norman Mailer who said, “Once a newspaper touches a story, the facts are lost forever, even to the protagonists.” Then there is George Orwell who adds to the abuse with the comment, “Early in life I had noticed that no event is ever correctly reported in a newspaper.”

On the other side of the discussion, while “newspa­pers should have no friends” (Joseph Pulitzer), in the defense of such rare newspapers such as the AVA – ‘America’s Last Newspaper,’ I offer you the comment by somebody you would perhaps not particularly wish to see on your side in any discussion about ethics and mor­als — former Chicago Mayor (1955-1976), Richard J. Daly, who commented, “A newspaper is the lowest thing there is!” I think newspapers would generally take that as a compliment considering the source. But perhaps the most positive comment about newspapers is that by Thomas Jefferson, who would have been an avid AVA reader in his day I am sure, who said, “Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.” Thanks for your support Thomas; I think that might have guaranteed you a free subscription.

Public Service Announcements… #21 – Lauren’s New Year’s Eve Party will feature Dean Titus and the Coyote Cowboys and a good crowd is expected featuring all sorts of Valley people, plus those who will have been to Boonberry Bert’s annual sushi party earlier in the eve­ning... #22 – For many Valley folks of perhaps a differ­ent ilk, then The Boonville Saloon will have a party on the same night and this will probably be a sort of alumni gathering for large numbers of the A.V.H.S. grads of 1970 to 2005 and their families and friends... I hope to see many of you at both of these traditional Valley gath­erings to welcome in the New Year... #23 - Another heads-up for the upcoming Crab Feeds that will take place in the New Year and for which tickets are now selling like hotcakes. The first ‘Feed’ will benefit the Senior Center and takes place on Saturday, January 15th - you can call Gina Pardini for tickets at 895-3609 or pick them up at any one of these Valley outlets – Lem­ons’ Market in Philo, Laughing Dog Books, All that Good Stuff, or The Fairground Office in Boonville, or at the Yorkville Market... Then it is the ‘Original’ Crab Feed on Saturday, February 5th for which, for now, you can get tickets by calling Gloria Ross at 895-3071 or Eva Holcomb at 895-3307...

Finally this week, here is a list (probably not com­plete and for that I apologize) of those Valley folk who have gone but who are most certainly not forgotten. The following Valley people have passed away in the last fifteen months or so but they are fondly remembered by many of us who remain.

Guido Pronsolino. Bob Mathias. Dustin Dilley. Dick Sands. JoAnne Wyant, Elwin Maxey, Bea Coffman, Andy Abbott, Tom Smith, Patricia ‘Pat’ Erickson, War­ren ‘Skip’ Harris, Ava Glover, Laurie Howes, Charmian Blattner, Peter C. Boudoures, Carroll Pratt, Free Lovelight Starseed Dreamchaser ‘Derek’ Hanes, David Broadbent, Thomas Berger.

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”… May your dreams come true for 2011... Humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. PS. Keep the Faith. PPS. Contact me with words of support/abuse through the Letters Page or by e-mail at

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