Vexxed At ‘Vaxxed’: Like an Infection

An email just arrived in my inbox recently titled “The Most Controversial Film in the Country — VAXXED — Set to Open in The San Francisco Bay Area this Friday!” Why it was not in my junk email box I am not sure, because it promotes a junk film pushing junk science. The film, “Vaxxed: […]

Merle Haggard, Hippie Icon?

Merle Haggard died last week, up in his beloved Mount Shasta region, on his 79th birthday. His son Ben wrote this online: “A week ago dad told us he was gonna pass on his birthday, and he wasn’t wrong. A hour ago he took his last breath surrounded by family and friends. He loved everything […]

Ozzie & Harriet Hit The Beach

My first real job might have been the best I ever had. Armed with a brand-new first driver’s license, I delivered groceries and booze to the stars. Or, at least, a couple of them. Besides John Wayne, for example, there was Ozzie and Harriett Nelson.

Tom & Huck Hit The Beach

Early sunny morning, probably a school day; we are about 15 years old. You walk a few doors down and knock on my bedroom window, wearing just swim trunks, t-shirt, flip-flops, carrying swim fins. “C’mon, there’s a good south swell and nobody’s around and we can go get some waves.” Well why not, I say, and join you with exact same attire and my fins. We walk a few blocks down towards the beach, me figuring we’re just going to hit the nearby Coves, our semi-private paradise, but at the coast highway you stick out your thumb, heading south.

10 Questions for Trump

Dear Mr. Trump: I have some questions: 1. “He wants to be famous. He wants people to talk about him. He wants people to notice him. He wants people to write about him. He wants people to ask him for autographs…” – Nora Ephron, Esquire, 1989. After the most recent Republican candidates’ debate, when asked […]

A Holiday Noir

Down at the beach, waiting for Santa Claus. Well, not quite; I was at the beach because I love the beach and even more important, my dog loves the beach. But it truly was Christmas Eve, an unseasonably warm one although those were becoming more common, and we’d been on the sand and in the […]

Domestic Terrorism: Look In The Mirror?

There’s an old sad saying that “marijuana does cause insanity – but only in politicians.” Alas, the same holds true for guns. President Obama, spurred by America’s latest mass shooting, delivered a “rare Oval Office speech” on Sunday night. His focus was on terrorism, by “thugs,” and their “perverted interpretation of Islam” which he called […]

Thanks Anyway

Anybody reading this has recently survived another Thanksgiving holiday. Too much food of course, to the point of gluttony and beyond, and the undercurrents of celebrating incipient genocide of Native Americans, not to mention innocent turkeys. And then there’s the lurking threat of familial and/or friends drama and trauma that accompanies any such holiday gathering. […]

Bad Bugs Biting Back

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law the nation’s most stringent restrictions on the use of antibiotics in the production of meat. Is this a good thing? It certainly is – perhaps a crucial step in our survival, in fact – and I am not prone to exaggeration of such things. Now our state’s new policy must become that of the entire nation.

Last Rights

Californians have just won a right that we all hope we will never need to use: The right to physician-assisted dying. Governor Jerry Brown signed California’s End of Life Option Act last week after what was clearly deep consideration; he concluded that “I do not know what I would do if I were dying in […]

Animals At Their End: Grief & Gratitude

When you adopt a pet or one just finds it into your life, besides all the joy and fun and exasperation, you also sign up for an eventual pile of pain. For whomever they may be, they have one fatal – literally – flaw – their lives are too short. Even shorter than ours, anyway, […]