Valley People 12/16/2009

by AVA News Service, December 16, 2009

 THOSE FETCHING little woolen dolls at the Knitted Brow in downtown Boonville are the creation of a young Polish artist named Katrin Laskowski who was born in Lodz where she also attended Art College and received her B.A. in Graphics and Painting before going off to post-graduate work in Basel, Switzerland. Ms. Laskowski now lives in Ukiah. The dolls are made from Navajo Churro wool and would make a perfect gift for a little kid. For more examples of Ms. Laskowski’s work go to Katrinlaskowski.net.

THE VALLEY'S ANNUAL Christmas Sing-A-Long is this Saturday, December 19th at 8:30pm at Lauren's with the professional accompaniment of pianist Lynn Archambault. Caroling song books will be provided. This one is really a lot of fun. If you've never done one, and even if you couldn't carry a tune in the proverbial bucket, you're guaranteed a fine time.

“THE THANKSGIVING VANDALISM at the high school indicates that the health of our community continues to be compromised by drug use. The vandalism has been addressed by the Sheriff's Department and the school. The two vandals have been apprehended, charges filed and they will most likely be expelled from school. Their families will be required to make restitution for the damage. The school is being repaired and new security options are being considered. Over and done with? What about the break-in and drug use in the gym? Traces of marijuana and alcohol use were reportedly left behind. Rumors abound that adults were part of the event as well as teens. Was Ecstasy part of the euqation in the vandialism? The use of ecstasy, or “thizz” (as some kids call it) has been rumored to be in use in the local drug scene. One of the vandals reportedly admitted to taking a “pill” before going on his destructive rampage through the school. The party in the gym was probably a catalyst to the vandalism. We feel that it is vitally impoprtant to find out who was at the party and that there should be clear consequences for the break-in. Whoever these adults are they need to be charged and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Increased drug use is always a bad indicator of the health of the community. The time to step up and reverse this trend is now. We strongly urge anyone with information to call the Sheriff's Dispatch at 489-4086. We will host an information program 'Signs and Symptoms of Drug Use' on January 26 at 6:30pm in the high school cafeteria. Call 895-2146 for more information. (Colleen Schenck, Anderson Valley Community Action Coalition)

THE FAMILIES of the vandals are mortified and facing very large restitution bills while the vandals themselves have been expelled from school after they spent a few days in juvenile hall. The charges against them are pending but, as law enforcement is quick to say, the wheels of the juvenile probation department turn slowly if at all. The graffiti attack on the school still hasn't been resolved although the perp was almost immediately identified. That case is months old because it was somehow “lost” by probation. (The Superior Court of this County is far too tolerant of sub-standard, even incompetent work by adult and juvenile probation officers who often hide their shoddy job performances behind the juvenile confidentiality laws. Ditto for Children's Protective Services, but that's another story.) The two vandals are not on probation because they haven't yet been convicted of anything, meaning deputies Squires and Walker can't monitor them for drug and alcohol use.

HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR Laura Essayah writes: “Hi everybody! It’s Sunday night and I’m just about to go to sleep because I have a very long day ahead of me. My mother will be driving my brother Jamal and me to the San Francisco airport at 9am. Once we arrive in France, my brother, father and I plan to rest for a day before continuing our journey to Africa. We’ll drive through Spain and then take the ferry over to Morocco, this way we won’t have to take taxies. It’ll be a lot easier to travel with our large suitcases if we don’t have to transport them back and forth from car to car. I am very happy with the response of the community concerning the donation of supplies and money to the Moroccan school I have sort of adopted. I’m really looking forward to these two weeks and I plan to write another update next week to keep you posted from Morocco. Until then, au revoir!”

EMIL ROSSI mentioned the other day that he remembered three chicken farms in The Valley just before he went off to fight in World War Two. One of them was a thousand-bird operation that he ran at the family's Boonville home, another near Philo, the largest, some three thousand hens as Rossi remembered, at the O'Brien property near Navarro. “We all did pretty well, too,” Rossi recalled. “Mendoza's Market in Mendocino drove through every week to pick up the eggs for delivery down south.”

OUR ACE CRIME reporter, Bruce McEwen, is looking for a commute ride from Boonville to Ukiah and back again. We can pay MTA prices for fuel ($60 a month) as our part of the deal. Please call 895-3016.

GRANGE GROOVE, Bruce Hering writes, is on for Friday night (December 18th) at, of course, the Philo Grange. “Free form dance and exercise. All ages welcome. DJ Pete will spin the tunes and Mike Believe's inspired visuals will complete the show. Bring in your water and take off your shoes! No cover, but donations accepted. Bring a friend!”

ON A DRIZZLY NIGHT last week I was supposed to meet Olie at the Hotel for dinner. The Hotel was closed. We went to Alicia’s. Also closed. We shuffled up to the Lodge, where Tom the master chef was shooting pool, not deboning Cornish hens: the kitchen was shuttered, the burners off, the menus closed up tighter than a Freemason’s coffin. Finally, we trudged up to Lauren’s, hoping for the best but expecting more heartbreak. As we approached we saw light, heard laughter, smelled something suspiciously close to fragrant garlic and warm bread. The place was packed with diners and revelers and undercover agent types clutching pinots and memorizing the license plates of all south-bound vehicles. Soon the indomitable Gary delivered to me the perfect cheeseburger: a hearty patty of beef fed from sweet grasses and baby violets, smothered with onions, and provocatively stretched out like a cheap starlet on a chaise longue of homemade bun. (Now I know why we’re in Afghanistan!) Olie had a zucchini boat filled with organic delights coaxed, half-naked, from sultry earthen boudoirs. Two bites in, we looked at each other: Why hadn’t we thought of Lauren’s sooner? Why haven’t you? (—Zack Anderson)

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