Valley People

by AVA News Service, September 9, 2010

RECENT TIMES have found Anderson Valley teams “the team to beat” as our record of wins grows. This past week our Boys Soccer team beat Calistoga 2-1. They take on Tomales at 4:30 on today. If you hurry, you can get there. The Girl’s Soccer team played the tough Sonoma Academy team last Thursday and lost. The girls took on Fort Bragg yesterday, results not known as we go to press. Our Nine-Man Football Team looked good last Saturday when they scrimmaged Point Arena and Rincon Valley. The super energetic Renée Lee (with Palma Toohey) organized a spaghetti feed for all three teams at Bill Nobles’ Assembly of God Church afterwards. Coach Logo Tevaseu, incidentally, is also linebacker coach at Mendocino College. Logo's brother Martin is in the big time with the New York Jets as a defensive lineman. Girls Volleyball has knocked off Roseland and lost a close series of matches to Clearlake. If you are a real “dyed in the wool” AVHS sports fan now is the time to order “Spirit and Pride” T-shirts or sweatshirts- new designs this year range wide including a ferocious panther on black and a pretty in pink version with flowers. Stop by the office for an order form with all the choices available. Ordering deadline is Wednesday, September 15th. (—Terry Ryder)

STUNNING WEATHER for the Labor Day weekend in Boonville. It was gloriously hot, and Highway 128, once far more romantically known as “MacDonald's to the Sea,” sang with the traffic of holidaymakers from all over. Dan Hicks and his Hot Licks were in Mendocino, another smoking-hot band at the Navarro Store, and everybody in between grilling prime cuts of meat and swilling pricey cups of wine. What fun! (Bruce McEwen)

BUT SOME OF US had to work. And a great many others, languishing in unemployment, wished they could work. I was among the former, and it was my job to go to a more local show, so I missed Dan Hicks and saw Nancy Joy instead. But before we get to “N. Joy” (get it?), let's snap open a cold one and consider the holiday weekend as a set piece. Many of the vehicles humming happily through town were mounted with ocean-going kayaks, four-wheeler motor scooters, camper shells, and all the fossil fuel-propelled detritus associated with Happy Motoring. Interspersed with the gas guzzling-merrymakers were other vehicles, loaded down with household possessions, refugees of the recent collapse of the drive-and-shop economy, looking for a place to go to ground for the coming winter. Of course the usual bi-annual Flea Market at the Veterans Building in Boonville was in full swing. They do it twice a year, Memorial Day and Labor Day. But sales were off this spring and only marginally better last weekend. So many people who have spent their lives and fortunes collecting what is basically junk, paying storage on it, and looking to off-load it for some rapidly inflating dollars, were scarcely in the market for more. I went every morning for the biscuits and gravy, a huge no-no for a man of my advanced cholesterol levels. But on Saturday I went whole-hog, got the B&G for breakfast and went back for an burger as big as a truck tire smothered in absolutely poisonous red chili on top of which I dumped about enough shredded cheese to clot Gargantua's arteries. I then cracked open a vial of Tobasco sauce, sprinkled half on the gut-bomb grub and the rest went into a bloody mary. “I'm afraid you've caught me with my snout in the trough,” I apologized to the waitress who asked if there'd be anything else. I blew some bubbles in the thick chili sauce through my nose, gulped, belched, and touched my lip with a napkin corner. “I'm good,” I said. “How did it go, the Flea Market, I mean?” She said something, but slurping and licking the plate, I missed it. I went outdoors to fire up a cigarette. A couple of the Gypsies were packing up and clearing off. But before I doused my butt, another truck and trailer pulled in to take their place. There were two magnificent boats flying For Sale pennants parked along the highway. (—Bruce McEwen)

I STOPPED at One Man's -- an on-going yard sale -- and chatted with proprietor Mark Fontaine, a retired gent who likes people, he said. Which makes two of us. One Man's is located in South Boonville between Don Pardini's house and the Fairgrounds parking lot. Way back, it was a produce stand, operated, I'm told, by the late Evelyn Berry. Mark Fontaine had all kinds of household things for sale, plus a couple of trailers to haul it all off with. “What's selling?” I asked. “Baby stuff,” he said. “This gave me pause. Of the seven barmaids at the Forest Club in Ukiah, my favorite hang-out, five are pregnant. The bar sports two plaques from the Ukiah City Council. One says 'Best Cocktail' and the other 'Best Pick-Up Place'. I'm ready to believe it -- but not ready to pay the child-support. Anyhow, Mark Fontaine had a high-chair. “Eight generations old,” he said. Mrs. Fontaine had scoured and polished and wrapped the high-chair in plastic. It was beautiful. A pregnant woman spotted it from the highway, slammed on her brakes and charmed Mr. Fontaine out of it. “Nothing,” he said and emphasized again “nothing sells for more than $10.” I'm ready to believe it -- but didn't have $10. “I'm not in it for the profit,” he said. “I like to sell and I especially like meeting people. I go to garage sales and get a lot of stuff for a song. A lot of people,” he notes modestly, “have no money so I just give it to 'em.” He said he sold lots of kids gear, books and exercise equipment. One Man's will be open on the weekends until Thanksgiving then he'll close for the season. (—Bruce McEwen)

NANCY JOY was not an hour over 19 by the looks of her, and she said she was from Comptche, a home-grown gal with a guitar and some songs. And her friends. One of these friends, Shawn Nichols of St. Helena, dreadlocks down to his belt, sang about a dozen songs, which were all pretty good. Mr. Nichols got some enthusiastic applause from the small crowd in attendance, the $10 cover charge having negatively affected the turn out. His last song he said was a tribute to his wife. It started out with, “You make me feel...” and then the words grew indistinct to the point I couldn't make out how she made him feel — good, I bet. Nancy Joy had another friend, Sebastian from Sebastopol, who was only 17. The kid could play but I couldn't understand any of his words. I asked an enthusiastic listener what he was singing about. “He sings like Michael Hedges,” she said. “Who's Michael Hedges?” I asked. “You know, the one who got killed in the car wreck.” (— Bruce McEwen)

NANCY JOY sang like her friends, kinda soft, kinda mournful. She told me all three of them were popular at a place called Hop Monk in Sebastopol. They were popular in Boonville, too. I could make out some of Nancy Joy's lyrics. She sang about hope, and just trying to be happy in a world that offers little objective hope for happiness. I'm feeling pretty good myself, thank you, but to each her own. My generation of songsters had been lied to and sang angry songs about it. These kids have been told the truth and they sound worried. (—Bruce McEwen)

BE SURE TO STOP in at Laughing Dog Books where our very own Stan Peskett, quite renowned internationally as a muralist, has his latest work on display and called “On A Musical Note, richly populated scenes of people gathering to enjoy musical experiences in settings around the world."

BRIAN SCHREINER stopped by the office to present me with a camo-colored t-shirt emblazoned “USMC Mountain Warfare Training Center,” at the sight of which I was transported fifty years back in time when that place was called Pickle Meadows Cold Weather Training Center, I think, and I spent a month trudging around in the Eastern Sierra snow with a mortar base plate, pulling myself over winter streams on wire ropes, building snow caves, walking around on tennis racket snow shoes. It was cold all right, but beautiful. The nearest town was Bridgeport where my fellow mortarman, Manual Salangsalang — he carried the tube — was declared a Paiute Indian and not allowed to buy beer. “I'm a pucking Pilipino!” Manual would shout. “I never heard of no pucking Paiute Indians, and they never heard of pucking Pilipinos! What is this pucking place?"

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