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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Sunny Warm | 101 Blocked | 2 New Cases | Vaccination History | Beachgoers | Jon Snyder | Fiddlehead Fuss | Citrus Fair | Phase Greed | Pop McCray | Water Projects | Pompadour Gang | Pink Cadillac | Evergreen Noyo | Ed Notes | Company | Camp Hiring | Yesterday's Catch | Capitol Looters | Lady Chauvin | Quarantine Cooking | Car Parts | Super Advice | Good Conditioning | Back to School | Gogh's Crows | Union Conversation | Patient Ingredient | Friendly Islander | Capitalist Class | Dishwashing | Clampdown Mania

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SEASONABLE TO WARM WEATHER will continue through Saturday with no precipitation expected. A chance of light rain and high elevation snow will return late in the weekend and early next week. (NWS)

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A FEW MILES north of Cloverdale on Highway 101 a big rig overturned, spilling debris (recycling materials) and blocking all southbound traffic for hours. A minor injury was reported. CHP reports the #1 southbound lane was reopened at 7:42am.


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2 NEW COVID CASES reported in Mendocino County yesterday afternoon.

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by William Miller, MD; Chief of Staff at Adventist Health – Mendocino Coast Hospital

This will be a two-part series. Part 1 will briefly explore the history of vaccinations as well as touch on the beginnings of fears around vaccination safety. Part 2 will then go on to address specific modern-day concerns being raised about the COVID vaccines.

Vaccines have clearly been one of the most important scientific breakthroughs in the fight against infectious disease in humans; along with improved sanitation and the development of antibiotics. Prior to vaccines and antibiotics, it was common for people to die of pneumonia in their 30’s, young people to be crippled due to polio and the elderly to die from influenza. Tetanus, rabies, and diphtheria were also serious problems that were often fatal. Even measles would show up with a more virulent strain every few decades causing deadly epidemics. COVID is hardly the first widespread viral illness to challenge us.

The history of vaccination begins in the 1500’s when Chinese physicians started using the dried fluid from smallpox pustules from ill patients who had milder cases of the disease to inoculate healthy people. This process, called variolation after the Latin name for smallpox variola, involved inoculating the recipient by either scratching the dried pus into the skin or blowing it into the nose. This caused a mild case of smallpox after which the person was immune to getting a more serious case later. 

Smallpox epidemics were a big worldwide problem by the 1700’s with outbreaks occurring throughout Europe every few years. In some outbreaks, as many as 60% of the population got the disease which carried a 20% mortality, ten times more fatal that COVID. Patients who did survive were often left with terrible scars on their faces. Variolation was used at the time in Western and Eastern countries to try to prevent these epidemics. The problem was that since variolation involved the actual smallpox virus, about 2% of recipients developed the more serious illness from the inoculation. 

Edward Jenner, an English physician considered to be the father of vaccination, noted that milkmaids who got a similar illness called cowpox on their hands from milking cows, were immune to smallpox. Cowpox, caused by a close relative to the smallpox virus, did not cause serious illness in humans and did not leave scarring of the skin. Jenner and others began to experiment with inoculating healthy subjects with extracts from cowpox pustules instead of smallpox pustules. They showed that the subjects thus vaccinated were immune to smallpox. Since cowpox does not cause a serious illness in humans, this was much safer. The term vaccination derives from the Latin word for cowpox, vaccinea, with the root word vacca meaning cow.

The controversy around vaccine safety began around the same time because of concerns that variolation could cause smallpox in a small portion of people, the very disease it was intended to prevent. When Jenner’s cowpox vaccine was introduced, some people began to fear that the vaccine would cause cow shaped deformities at the inoculation site. While this fear may sound absurd, it was fiercely believed by many in society who did not understand the science. It also sounds similar to current day fears that the COVID vaccine will alter the recipient’s genetics.

The controversy was made worse when the English Parliament passed the Vaccination Act of 1853 which required all infants to be vaccinated. Parents who refused to vaccinate their children could be fined and if they didn’t pay the fine they could be imprisoned. This greatly heated up the passions of the debate. While the Vaccination Act was repealed in 1907, distrust of the government requiring people to submit to an injection that is feared by some to potentially alter one’s body remained strong. In the United States, arguments of personal liberty were advanced against vaccination mandates and many states in the US passed laws prohibiting mandatory vaccinations.

Opposition to vaccination on religious grounds also began early on with the argument that disease is God’s punishment for sins and for science to intervene to prevent disease was thwarting God’s will. Similar arguments have been put forward around treating many illnesses stating that illness is a test of faith and that true faith and the strength of prayer will overcome illness. In this context, to rely upon medical treatment may be seen as a lack of faith.

The next big breakthrough in vaccines occurred when Jonas Salk developed the first effective polio vaccine in 1955. Polio was a terrible illness caused by poliovirus. Like COVID, most people (70%) who got infected either had no symptoms or only mild ones. However, about 5% developed serious muscle weakness and in children this often left the child permanently crippled. In adults who developed the more serious illness about 1/3 died of respiratory failure, hence the use of the “iron lung” in the 20th century. Polio may have been around since ancient times, but started to cause widespread pandemics by the early 1800’s.

During the mid-twentieth century, the World Health Organization campaigned to completely eradicate smallpox and polio worldwide through vaccination programs. The last case of smallpox was recorded in 1978 and it was declared eradicated in 1980. Polio is close to being eradicated and currently only persists in certain Islamic countries where the Taliban have forbidden vaccination out of concerns that it is a plot by Western governments to control the population.

(The views shared in this weekly column are those of the author, Dr. William Miller, and do not necessarily represent those of the publisher or of Adventist Health.)

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(photo by Chris Calder)

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On June 27, 1995 the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by family members of Jon Dana Snyder, who had tried to contact him that same month. 

Jon Dana Snyder

Unable to locate Snyder at his residence, a family member contacted a neighbor who last saw Snyder in Covelo, California sometime in December 1994.

Upon further investigation, Snyder’s vehicle was found in the area of Chicken Ridge in Covelo and it appeared to have been abandoned after having become stuck in the mud. Investigators learned nearby residents had seen the vehicle in its stuck position starting sometime in January 1995.

A Search and Rescue operation was conducted at Snyder’s Eel River Ranch property in Covelo and the area of where his vehicle was located. The operation ended without Snyder being located and Investigators are still unaware of his current whereabouts.

Anyone with information in regards to the possible whereabouts of Snyder is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office Tip-Line by calling 707-234-2100. 

Age at time of disappearance: 45 years-old

Height: 5 feet 11 inches

Weight: 170 pounds

Hair: Blonde

Eye color: Blue

MCSO Case #: 95-2617

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Fiddleheads Cafe in Mendocino

I'm sure you have all seen the sign on Fiddleheads in Mendocino which is open again after the disaster last spring. They have a sign stating that if customers leave their masks in the trash they will give them 50% off anything they order. The tourists are swarming there. While some of you may agree to the no mask mandate, I am dismayed at the rise in the covid cases that are occurring. My request is to at least let the locals know about this so that we can resist this most egregious viewpoint.

They have a sign stating that if customers leave their masks in the trash they will give them 50% off anything they order.

Fiddleheads is a menace. The community can take action to close it down.

Restaurant profit margins are thin. Let’s ALL eat there. Take along an old mask.

Drop it in the can and get your 50% discount. Then proudly don your fresh one as you take your order.

Elizabeth Vrenios <>

F*heads under investigation

I just spoke to Lorena at the County Department of Communicable Disease, 707(472-2759). This is the correct number to call to register a complaint about the menace in our midst. Their email is

She said that they have received many complaints about Fiddleheads, and that a new investigation has been initiated into their flaunting of the county mask mandate.

Rainbird <>


June 17, 2020 

Mendocino County officials have issued a $10,000 citation against the owner of a coastal restaurant for his persistent defiance of a countywide health order intended to help contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Mendocino County officials have issued a $10,000 citation against the owner of a coastal restaurant for his persistent defiance of a countywide health order intended to help contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Fiddleheads Cafe owner Chris Castleman on Wednesday took steps to come into the compliance, but it’s clear he’s not prepared to do everything needed to comply with county standards for operating his Mendocino restaurant during the pandemic.

He said he still has no intention of requiring his workers to wear facial coverings, even though people who prepare, handle or serve food for sale are specifically called out in the county order requiring use of masks by anyone who enters an enclosed space with others from outside their household or social bubble.

“I’m not going to tell my employees to do anything,” Castleman said Wednesday. “That’s between them and the county. In general, the stance I have on all this is it’s about personal responsibility and personal choice. It’s not about me being a police officer.”

Public authorities strongly disagree.

The facial covers, social distancing and other simple measures required of business operators and others are a necessary tool in the fight against a highly contagious virus known to have infected 53 people in Mendocino County so far, Supervisor Ted Williams said.

“None of us want to see enforcement against local business owners,” saidb Williams, whose district includes Mendocino. “However, out of life and death concern for our vulnerable population, and in fairness to the other businesses we represent, compliance is not optional.”

Castleman has owned the tiny cafe for two years. He employs seven people, including a cook who would find a mask unbearable in the steaming hot kitchen, he said, and another employee with a history of domestic violence and claustrophobia who finds them unbearable.

He’s made his disdain for local health measures clear through signs posted out front of his Lansing Street business, stating in part, “Our freedom doesn’t end where your fear begins.” A newer version takes a slightly softer approach.

He said he has remained open, serving takeout food, since shelter-in-place orders went into effect in California in March and understood early versions of the county health order to give business owners and their workers the choice about wearing masks until a revised order issued May 28 spelled out the requirement for restaurant personnel.

In the meantime, when he was told that shared condiment, cream and sugar containers had to go, he complied. But he said his small business hardly allows a 6-foot separation, and he advised people afraid to be close to other people not to patronize his cafe.

This week after he was fined, Castleman completed a self-certification form required by the county of businesses operating while the coronavirus is still circulating. His earlier refusal to do so was a key violation for which he was cited.

Williams, the county supervisor, and Interim Code Enforcement Manager Trent Taylor said Castleman was rare for his refusal to comply voluntarily with the orders once educated by county personnel.

His citation was the first that Taylor was aware of under an urgency ordinance passed by the board March 4 establishing civil penalties for violations of coronavirus pandemic-related orders.

It established a $500 cap on fines for violations unrelated to commercial activity and allows for fines up to $10,000 for violations involving commercial activity.

A 24-hour notice of violation is required before its imposition. One was provided to Castleman on Monday.

The citation and maximum fine was imposed Tuesday.

Later that afternoon, supervisors voted unanimously in closed session to initiate litigation against Castleman and Fiddleheads if “other remedies are unsuccessful or insufficient to get a business to comply with the public health order.”

— Mary Callahan, The Press Democrat

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Cloverdale Citrus Fair, First Place, 1912

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Environmental activist Ellen Drell says the Board of Supervisors is rushing the Cannabis Cultivation Activity Ordinance forward to take advantage of a regulation that allows the county to pass it without doing a CEQA environmental review.

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Pop McCray, Cloverdale, 1908

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REGULAR MEETING of the Water Projects Committee

Anderson Valley Community Services District

To be held via teleconference Phone # 669 900 6833 Zoom Meeting ID 845 5084 3330 Password 048078

Public comments must be submitted by 10:00am on April 1, 2021 electronically to

 Thursday April 1, 2021 at 10:30am

Call To Order And Roll Call:

Recognition Of Guests And Hearing Of Public:

Approval Of March 4, 2021 Regular Meeting Minutes

Changes Or Modification To This Agenda: 

Report On Drinking Water Project

Report On Wastewater Project

Public Outreach

Scheduling of Virtual Tour of Smith River MBR for May 

Committee Approval of Wastewater Power Point Presentation

Concerns Of Members:


Previously — March Meeting Highlights (from the Minutes)

Drinking Water Project: CSD Board Chair Valerie Hanelt reported that all the components are figured out and there’s some final negotiations going on with Meadow Estates. The well at the elementary school will keep servicing the schools and the big feature is that the water will provide fire suppression for the schools and AV Way. The CSD is working with the State for an increase in [planning grant] funding for more testing. This project has been going on for six years and more money is needed. There were no Drinking Water questions.

Wastewater Project: Engineer Dave Coleman said that they had been waiting for precipitation before carrying out the investigation on the three pending sites. The County provided Coleman with a right of entry agreement [for the Fairgrounds] and now that there has been rain [early March] there will be initial investigations on several sites. Based on these investigations they will determine where to collect soil samples. CSD Manager Joy Andrews asked Coleman about a concern brought up last month regarding contaminants and chloramines that may be collected in the wastewater treatment plant and if there were long term outcomes who would be liable for any problems? Coleman said that there hasn’t been much research on this. He then explained that with the aerobic nature of the MBR the oxidization of chloramines would render them no longer chloramines. The wastewater system would actually help deal with organic solubles. Existing septic systems do not irradicate contaminants at all. Coleman said that the organic contaminants had about an 85% treatable rate with the MBRs (Membrane Bio-Reactors). Coleman explained that the waste project will serve existing needs, and that any additional needs, such as “granny units” would be served by the 10% oversizing of the waste project. Brown asked Coleman to make sure that they follow protocol before they enter the Mendocino Fairgrounds and show proof of insurance. Coleman agreed.

Public Outreach: A Virtual Tour of Smith River MBR: Smith River is the best match to the MBR wastewater system that is planned for Boonville. Tour Date to be announced. Coleman said that there are hundreds of MBRs throughout Northern California – many at wineries and breweries. The difference is that the CSD would have a self-contained “package plant.”

Q&A With Drinking Water Engineer/Consultant Jack Locey

Subject: Questions for Water meeting on Thursday 4/1

I need help with questions I am being asked by Meadow Estates folks:

Will meter boxes be installed in front of all parcels whether or not there is a house on the parcel?

If there are meter boxes, does the water company drop in a meter when the homeowner decides to participate?

Will laterals be connected from the meter to an existing house regardless of whether the homeowner is “hooking up”? (This question is because people want to have the infrastructure on the State's dime…..)

Is it possible to have a meter box and laterals and not pay anything until the owner decides to use municipal water?

What if the owner decided later to hook up to the system? Is there a meter box already on the parcel? Or does the main pipe have to be broken into?

If the laterals have a problem in the future, is it the responsibility of the homeowner or the district to repair? Who owns the laterals?

Valerie Hanelt

Dear Valerie , Kathleen and Joy,

Within Meadow Estates a service lateral with meter box and meter will be installed to all parcels (improved or vacant). An owner of a vacant parcel should be allowed to request that the CSD waive installation of a service lateral providing they acknowledge that should a future request for a water service be made to the CSD that the property owner will responsible for all charges applicable at the time, which would include a connection fee which may or may not provide for the installation of the service lateral. If it does not, the property owner would be responsible for installation of the lateral per CSD standards and be subject to CSD inspection and approval.

Water meters will be installed in all service laterals constructed as part of the project. The meter will be “locked off” by the CSD should a property owner request that the service be deactivated. Provided the CSD Board approves such a charge, the property will be subject to a water service standby or immediate availability charge as allowed by Government Code Section 61124.

Should project funding provide for installation of the private plumbing from the downstream side of the meter to onsite water plumbing, the new private plumbing will be installed regardless of the property owner’s intention to immediately utilize said plumbing. The CSD Board would have the option to waive said installation if petitioned by the property owner with a consequential acknowledgement of the property owner’s responsibility for said installation at some future time.

It is anticipated that the CSD Board will adopt a standby or immediate availability charge so it is anticipated that all properties having a water service lateral will have a recurring monthly charge.

The property owner is responsible for maintaining and performing repairs to private plumbing located downstream of the water service meter even if initially installed by the CSD's contractor. The CSD will be provided with a 1-year warranty on the plumbing during which the contractor will be responsible to repair any defective work.

 John S. ‘Jack’ Locey, P.E.

Senior Advisor

Brelje & Race Consulting Engineers

(707) 636-3735, Direct

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Cloverdale Gals, 1907

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"Congratulations," I was told by Dade Shyer. I'd won a new Mercedes, but that's not all.

I'd also won $7000 a week for life.

Now, I'm the wrong side of 80. A prize for life gets me maybe half a million.

"How about half a million up front?" I suggested which Dade thought was possible.

He spoke with an Asian accent and transferred me to his chief, a fellow who said he was Thomas Frazier. Tom asked me what color Mercedes I would like. "Pink," I said and asked for his office phone number. Dade said he could be reached at Publishers Clearing House at (405) 402-1205, which may be correct, but I have not checked.

Frazier verified my winnings and added a house in Honduras, but the Mercedes was now a Cadillac. When I laughingly complained about the vehicular down-grade, I was transferred to the central dispensary and learned everything would be delivered at my doorstep at 5:30 that very evening though I would have to pay $2700 in sales tax.

I was somberly jubilant as if winning big bucks was, if not an everyday occurrence, certainly a monthly one.

"What is the credit card you wish to use?"

Yours, I said.

"Mine?" an outraged squeak emanated from my purveyor.

I suggested he call me after polishing his approach.

I haven't heard back.

Today, I called PCH and was assured they never telephone prize recipients. I suspected it was all a scam from the get-go, but the prizes they piled on were the stuff of creamy dreams.

— John Fremont, Fort Bragg

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SPONGEBOB CANCELLED: Two episodes of SpongeBob SquarePants have been pulled from streaming on Paramount+ and are no longer available to purchase on Amazon Prime. In one episode, characters are tossed in a freezer after being forced to quarantine due to an illness at the Krusty Krab. In the other episode, three of the characters break into a woman's home and steal her underwear.

ANOTHER EARLY MORNING of frost fans. (Tuesday) The worst hit neighborhood is SoBo, South Boonville, where frost fans from three vineyards intersect to make sleep not only impossible, but woke painful. A small claims action against the offending vineyards might work, and if I still lived in that area I'd do it, and am standing ready to help any of the afflicted sue the bastards. 

NOT SURE what kind of trees they are (crepe myrtle?) but they're in full bloom on South State Street, Ukiah, splendid white petals for about a half-mile, the only time of year State Street is aesthetically bearable is end of March, first weeks of April.

MULLING over Brad Wylie's vivid portraits of the Anderson Valley circa early 1970s, one of the characters who fascinated me was Larry Parsons, the blind winemaker, as unsympathetic a handicapped person as you are likely to meet. But to those of us who possess what might be called an elastic tolerance for aberrant behavior, the guy was the source of endless amusement. I remember encountering Larry one night at the bar of the Boonville Hotel, where he was allowed one drink before he was lead across the street to the more down-market Boonville Lodge, when I asked him about the tragic recent death of a blind friend of his. A couple of Parsons’ blind pals were visiting him from the Bay Area where they and Parsons maintained lucrative blind man concessions in federal buildings. The three blind guys got drunk and drove around The Valley from one place to another getting drunker. Blind men driving? It happened. As Larry explained, one of the blind guys had had enough and asked to be driven to a place on the west side of Anderson Creek where he was staying. To get there one had to drive across an ancient redwood bridge some 60 or so feet above the stream bed. The bridge itself seemed to defy the laws of both physics and gravity; it was hard to tell what was holding it up. At the east end of the bridge the blind guy being driven home asked Larry to stop the car so he could relieve himself. Larry was at the wheel although even at high noon on a cloudless day he could barely make out shadows of objects around him. The next thing anybody heard was a startled yelp and, a split second later, a thud. The blind man had stepped off the bridge and fallen to his death on the rocks of the stream below. I asked Parsons what had happened. With the sinister little chuckle he prefaced all accounts of his misadventures with, Larry said, “Heh-heh. I told him to watch that first step. Heh-heh.” 

PARSONS, who began life in the Anderson Valley as a pot grower, also installed a few grapevines at his home at the top of the Holmes Ranch. I met him when an alarmed neighbor called me, “I just saw that blind guy’s kid driving him around up here while the blind guy shoots out the window of his truck. He told me he was hunting quail.” Larry’s son was ten or eleven at the time. He’d drive and aim Larry’s fire at wildlife. “Over there, Pop!”

PARSONS TOLD ME he was originally from Oklahoma. His father had him selling light bulbs door-to-door, “When I was in the first grade.” As an adult, Larry got a blind man’s concession in the Oakland federal building, which he parlayed into country property and then into his famous Pepperwood winery.

THE BLIND MAN became famous when his genius inspiration of braille wine labels not only made his wine a must-have among the trendys, the little blind winemaker became something of a media sensation, and soon there was a steady stream of traffic up the subdivision’s dusty roads, a subdivision that never expected a busy tasting room at its lofty ridgetop.

THERE followed some shocked calls to the ava from wine tasters, especially women who complained that Parsons had been “inappropriate.” Which could have been his middle name, because inappropriate occurrences were synonymous with him. “I was with my husband. We’d read about him in the New York Times, and being wine enthusiasts we wanted to meet him and buy his famous wine. We had a very hard time finding the place, and when we finally got up there it looked like a private home so we knocked on the door. A man yelled at us to ‘Come the hell in,’ like we were intruding. He was drunk and slumped in a corner of the room, but as soon as I entered he started saying things like, ‘Oh baby, this must be my lucky day. Sit right down next to me, honey. You sure smell good.’ Well, we just turned around and left.” There were several iterations of this experience from other women.

LARRY DIED in an odd car crash on the far side of Yorkville in the middle 1980s. His underage daughter was driving, mom was in the passenger seat, little Larry was in the back seat with big Larry, but big Larry was the only Parsons injured, and he was dead on impact when the car left the highway and hit a tree.

I MIGHT HAVE the Mendo record for most school board meetings attended. I started in Boonville in 1971, later branching out to covering county school board meetings when that organization was basically a smiley-faced criminal enterprise. My diligence won me a month in the County Jail but eventually a couple of the edu-crooks were also jailed. Looking back, I must say I was probably a little too-too, but I defend my coverage because I either had to call it as I was seeing it or explode from apoplexy. The dummies in journalism, which is most of them in this county, talk about “objectivity.” It’s possible, I suppose, it you simply write down what they claim they are doing, but come on, public education in this country at this time? Only a natural born serf could manage it. The following is from 1999 but fairly typical of my approach: 

LAST WEEK, just before the candidates' night for AV School Board hopefuls was convened at the Elementary School, this notice appeared in selected homes around The Valley:

“Regarding Election for: Trustees of the Anderson Valley Unified School District. AVTA is asking that you call or talk to five or more people you feel comfortable encouraging to vote in the board election. Please strongly suggest that we need people on the board who are supportive of our educational programs. These people include: Marti Bradford; Patrick McClure; Lynn Sawyer. Please plan to atend the candidates nigh next week and have questions prepared to ask the candidates.”

TRANSLATION: “Klan meeting at 9. Hoods optional.”

THE PHRASE “we need people on the board who are supportive of our educational programs” means we want a school board just like the one we have because it supports us no matter how derelict we are in our duties. It also means that dissenting opinion on the school board is, by definition, un-supportive of “our educational programs.”

SUBSTITUTE REVEREND MOON for the pronoun “we” in this lockstep communiqué, and you begin to have an idea of the mentality at work in Anderson Valley's schools. Sharon Gowan and Arlene Hendricks got all 6 votes here at the AVA although it's unlikely any of us agree with much of anything the two insurgents represent. They got our votes simply because they aren't the Moonies, er, the incumbent school board and the incestuous apparatus of in-place administrators and teachers. The kind of smiley-faced totalitarianism implicit in the teacher's “You Know Who To Vote For” letter, and the years of 5-0 votes for mediocrity sitting on the school board is, you can be sure, reflected in the classroom, especially in the high school's classrooms.

THE CANDIDATES' NIGHT was attended by exactly one unaffiliated person. Everyone else was a teacher or otherwise employed by the schools. Neither candidate McClure nor Hendricks attended the event. Mrs. Hendricks, a Methodist minister, had to be away on business, Pat McClure simply didn't show.

RICHARD HENDERSON, a long-time Ukiah attorney, begins his campaign for the Superior Court judge slot Friday afternoon in Ukiah. Festivities are scheduled for 5-7pm in the Saturday Afternoon Club at 107 South Oak Street. Also about to formally announce for the Department 4 judgeship is Jone Lemos Jackson of Mendocino. Henderson seems to have a broad base of support while Lemos is so far supported by a few Coast broads, so to speak. Val Muchowski, the Demo Party's Mendo whip, PC division, arranged for Lemos-Jackson to function as moderator of a candidates' night for the Boonville School Board here in Boonville last Wednesday evening, meaning Lemos-Jackson will be the candidate of the more precious sectors of the Mendo voting population — the KZYX-feminist-Democratic Party-Bly-Guy-enviro bloc.

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DAN BRAUN: Happy Spring Everyone! Here's to a safe and better year ahead....Camp Navarro will reopen in early June and we are currently hiring. Jobs in all departments, at all levels, are being posted at our website and we will continue to add more positions over the next few weeks. We are currently seeking an Assistant GM and Sous Chef as well as the other positions currently listed. 

CN will start to welcome the public in like a hotel as well as continue to run events selectively and safely. Our GM Dean Anderson and Chef Cody Butler are onsite and they look forward to meeting many of you in the days ahead. Thanks. 

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CATCH OF THE DAY, March 30, 2021

Connolly, Eagelston, Faust, Jones

JESSE CONNOLLY, Redwood Valley. Failure to appear.

SARA EAGELSTON, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

MATTHEW FAUST, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

LAMONT JONES, Ukiah. Stalking in violation of restraining order, protective order violation, suspended license for DUI, probation revocation.

Martinez, Sanchez, Wolfe, Young

RAYMOND MARTINEZ, Laytonville. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

IVAN SANCHEZ, Fort Bragg. Parole violation.

LARRY WOLFE JR., Ukiah. Parole violation.

TERRANCE YOUNG, Willits. Failure to appear, probation revocation. 

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BEEN SO LONG since I got double-vaxed, cain’t hardly ’member whut it wuz fuh. Daggone nice of ‘em, keepin’ us septos, octos and nonos waddling around, while young’ns, all them productive years left, fight for air. USA! USA!

And speaking of fighting for air, the Chauvin trial is televised, gavel to gavel. "Chauvin" is French, synonymous for "chauvinistic." I don't know if Derek is chauvinistic. I know he has a prosperous estate, for a Minneapolis cop--summer home here, other goodies there. Seems he had a number of Excessive Force marks on his record, but, you know, he's a cop! USA! USA!

Wikipedia: “Chauvin had 18 complaints on his official record, two of which ended in discipline, including official letters of reprimand. He had been involved in three police shootings, one of which was fatal. According to the former owner of El Nuevo Rodeo, a Latin nightclub, Chauvin had worked there off duty as security while George Floyd was also working as security, but was not certain whether they knew each other. The owner has been critical of Chauvin since his arrest, describing Chauvin's tactics as 'overkill' and saying 'Chauvin was unnecessarily aggressive on nights when the club had a black clientele, quelling fights by dousing the crowd with pepper spray and calling in several police squad cars as backup.' The owner also said Chauvin responded to fights by spraying the crowd with mace instead of dealing with those who were fighting.”

After he was arrested for the death of George Floyd, this:

Wikipedia: "Eight correctional officers at the Ramsey County Jail filed a discrimination complaint against supervisors at the jail with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, alleging that during Chauvin's brief stay before his transfer to a state prison, non-white guards were not allowed to work on the fifth floor where Chauvin was being held. Their complaint also alleged that a guard saw a white lieutenant sit on Chauvin's bed and that she permitted Chauvin to use her cellphone. Responding to the complaint, the Minnesota Department of Human Rights said it was opening an investigation to determine whether discrimination took place."

And this (Wikipedia): "The U.S. Department of Justice convened a grand jury in February 2021 to investigate Chauvin for several civil rights charges. The investigation included the killing of Floyd on May 25, 2020, and other incidents involving Chauvin, such as a September 2017 case where Chauvin pinned a 14-year old boy for several minutes with his knee while ignoring the boy's pleas that he couldn't breathe; the boy briefly lost consciousness. Though the 2017 case was similar to the 2020 killing of Floyd, it was deemed as inadmissible by the judge overseeing the trial of Chauvin for Floyd's murder."

Chauvin & Wife

And this (Wiki): "Chauvin married a real estate agent and photographer; she is a Hmong refugee from Laos who competed in a "Mrs. Minnesota" beauty pageant in 2018. She filed for divorce the day before he was arrested for Floyd's death."

I guess he was upset--Very Bad Day. It's an effective way to recover your peace of mind. Go kneel on somebody's neck. Make sure you cuff them first. 

More from Wikipedia: "Following the murder charges against him, Chauvin and his wife were charged with multiple felony counts of tax evasion related to allegedly fraudulent tax returns from 2014 to 2019. The Washington County prosecutor's office announced on July 22, 2020 that Chauvin and his wife under-reported joint income by a total of $464,433, including more than $95,000 from Chauvin's off-duty security work. The complaint also alleges failure to pay proper sales tax on a $100,000 BMW purchased in Minnesota in 2018, failure to declare income from Chauvin's wife's business, and improperly accounted-for deductions on a rental home."

People just don't understand how hard police work is. (Also, I didn't know Minneapolis, Minnesota has even more race sensitivity than, say, Dallas, or Georgia or North Carolina or any other goddamn place south of the Mason-Dixon Line and a whole raft of places north of it.) USA!

(Mitch Clogg)

* * *

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by Paul Theroux

Border music, the coyote said, was not just the narcocorridos, the drug ballads celebrating the frontier exploits of the Mexican cartels, but norteno music, northern border ballads. This music was given its peculiar flavor through the use of a border vocabulary that has grown up on both sides. And the cultural mix occurs on the American side, too, much of which is saturated with the jolly vida mexicana, as well as the odious narco cultura.

The proof that criminals the world over are in love with euphemism shows in the use of piedra (stone) or foco (headlights) as words for crystal meth, perico (parrot) for cocaine, choncha, mota, mostaza (mustard), or cafe for marijuana and agua de chango (monkey water) for a strong but cheap liquid high. Montada is the Spanish word for being mounted, as on a horse, but it is the border word for torture, usually by the Mexican military. Albergue, the word for traditional inn, is used on the border for a rough shelter made by a migrant.

Juan Cordero told me the border word gabacho, which most Spanish speakers would recognize as “frog,” was the slur in Spain for a French person. But on the border — and it has traveled deeper into Mexico — gavacho is an insulting word for a gringo. Border gringos returned the compliment, with the much more offensive "beaner" or “frijolero.” El Gabacho can also refer to the United States as a whole, as in Mi hermano se fue al Gabacho. (My brother went to the States.)

A punto is a place for buying drugs — punto meaning “point,” as in “point of sale.” Picadero (picar means to jab or prod) is the word for a heroin house. Another common word, puchador, is derived from the English word “pusher.” And if you were robbed, there was an odd location not used elsewhere in Mexico: Me nicieron — They did me. One way they might do you is to engage in a housejacking: the English term was used by border Mexicans to mean being burgled in a specific way, the villains breaking into your house to steal your documents, your passport, your visa — the papers you need to cross the border.

"I'm sure you saw halcones along the border," Julian said. This word for falcons is the border term for lookout or spy, and many had an Artful Dodger jauntiness. Yes, I told him, I saw them on the hills near the Comedor, standing on the hillside, scoping out migrants likely to need the services of a coyote or cartel pollero, who were always in search of clients willing to pay to be led across the border.

“Border cities are immigrant cities,” Julian said. “They are populated by people from all over. You can talk to anyone.” From San Ysidro in the West (across from Tijuana) to Brownsville in the East (across from Matamoros), the spillover means a non-Spanish-speaking American is at a distinct disadvantage when shopping, buying gas, eating in many US border restaurants, and fraternizing with workers. “It's not like Mexico City or Chihuahua, where there are hierarchies. There's no rigid class system here.”

That was the reason he was staying in juarez, he said. He had a house and as a photographer and journalist — one of a diminishing number here — he could be an eyewitness to whatever happens next in this desperate city.

He seemed to me an example of great resolve, because he had a visa to cross the border and at any time of day or night he could look across the culvert that holds the greenish residue of the Rio Grande and see the booming city of El Paso. The irony was that much of El Paso's prosperity was based on immigrant labor and the profits from sweatshops in Juarez.

The day I left El Paso I fell into conversation with a Texan in a restaurant — a man with a book in his hand I took to be someone I might have something in common with. And so it turned out. He was a reader, the book was a collection of poems, the man himself wrote poems, and he was glad to talk over coffee at the Good Luck Cafe, which served homestyle Mexican food. We could see Juarez from where we sat and so my natural question was, If he was so enthusiastic about comida mexicana, wouldn't the best meal be found over there?

“Maybe,” he said and pointed with his face, the half-mile to the border. “God, I haven't been over there in years.”

The Valley of the Rio Grande on the Texas side was irrigated farmland — stony Chihuahua Desert on the far side. (About 40 miles south of Van Horn, at a place called Porvenir, a melancholy sign. On January 28, 1918, a group of Texans, Anglo rangers and soldiers, snatched 15 Mexican men and boys and massacred them on a bluff overlooking the river, then burned Porviner to the ground.)

And then I was back amid the beauties of Big Bend and the high desert, descending to Box Canyon and Amistad and Del Rio, Texas, where a quarter of the working population lived over the border, filing across the bridge every day to mop floors, trim gardens, or go shopping. I had lunch in Del Rio, served by Myrta, who told me she crossed to the US every day to cook Mexican food in this restaurant.

“They make car parts and safety belts there now,” Myrta said. “But workers earn 75 pesos a day (about four dollars). I'd rather commute to Del Rio and make tacos.”

* * *

* * *

I LIKE TO TRAIN. I always thought that fighting was mainly condition; to be able to go ten, fifteen rounds at a high speed requires good conditioning and that makes a big difference with a lot of fighters. Some fighters have ability, but they don't condition themselves properly. I always try to condition myself the right way. It's no effort for me. I enjoy it because I know it'll be helpful to me.

— Rocky Marciano

* * *


by Michelle Hutchins, County Superintendent of Schools

What a difference a year makes! It is so good to see school buses stopping for school children, not just distributing meals and operating as hot spots. Last year on March 17, Mendocino County schools transitioned to distance learning and teachers were asked to instantly master online learning platforms using video conferencing to teach their classes.

Now, schools are in the process of returning to in-person instruction where teachers are learning to “Room and Zoom,” simultaneously teaching students at home and in the classroom. Ingenuity is at a high point. By the end of Spring break, most elementary and middle schools and some high schools will have transitioned to partial in-person learning.

Returning To In-Person Instruction

Though this is good news, it is important to recognize what this means for schools and the communities they serve.

Before you start comparing your local school or district to those in surrounding areas, please remember that each school community is deciding the best reopening process that fits their unique circumstances, including resources, student needs and teacher needs. 

While studies show it is safe for students to be on campus, challenges arise as we transition from one mode of learning to another. Safety mitigation measures must be learned and new patterns of behavior established.

The redesign of classrooms and campuses is dependent upon the structure of each school facility. So, the redesign of the classrooms to accommodate COVID safety is not a one-size-fits-all strategy.

As the pandemic wanes, the CDC will continue to adjust guidelines. School communities will likely respond by beginning to relax some of their safety requirements. For example, the required distance between students will lessen as schools become comfortable with reopening strategies. 

Every school that offers in-person instruction is required to publicly post a Covid Safety Plan, a plan that explains the individualized strategies each school is implementing to address the challenges of that particular site.

The State of California has a Safe Schools for All website ( where members of the public can report concerns and schools can receive technical assistance. There’s also an in-person instruction dashboard that will be finalized April 1, so people can review the percentage of students in hybrid v. full-distance learning at each level: elementary, middle, and high school all over the state.

What We Learned From Distance Learning

Although educators agree that in-person instruction is best, distance learning wasn’t all bad. As we worked through each new challenge, we developed a new kind of learning. And thanks to the need for everyone to learn remotely, we now have a 1:1 computer-to-student ratio countywide.

Here are some examples of the benefits of distance-learning: 

Students were able to focus on academics without the distraction of having to navigate challenging social environments. Those who were victims of bullying or pressured to behave in ways inconsistent with their own beliefs felt enormous relief this year.

Because teachers have learned to teach remotely and record their lessons, in the future when students cannot attend class, they may still have access to class material and instruction.

Long-term distance learning could allow Mendocino County schools to share specialized classes or teachers (e.g., AP physics). This may allow schools to expand course offerings and dual-enrollment opportunities with Mendocino College.

End-Of-Year Testing

Whether students are still learning remotely or transitioning to in-person instruction, they’ll be required to take summative, end-of-year testing—the State has not waived this requirement. It has, however, granted some flexibility in what instrument schools use for these tests. The goal of this testing is to determine the true learning loss and design programs to help students recover in the coming years. 


To make up for learning loss and repay schools for some of the massive costs they’ve incurred this year because of the pandemic, schools will be receiving one-time funds from the State. The monies they received may not cover all the expenses, but they will certainly help. 

As I’ve said before, on a personal note I encourage everyone who can get the vaccine to do so. This pandemic has been devastating for so many people and the sooner we can get it under control, the better. I believe the vaccine is our quickest route to a post-pandemic world.

* * *


by Elliot Sperber

Vincent knew his Bible well

from Belgium with the miner men

He knew that Noah built his ark

From cypress, among other things,

And waited for the rain to come

The deluge washing over them

For 40 days they floated, then

Released a crow to look for land

The crow brought back

a message that

As far as she could fly she saw

an endless sea, no shores at all

no consolation; isolation,

desolation only

was the message of the crow and so

When forty of those crows arrive

They bear that message

Forty times

Above the wheat fields

of Auvers-sur-Oise

(Elliot Sperber is a writer, attorney, and adjunct professor. He lives in New York City and can be reached at and on twitter @elliot_sperber.)

* * *

* * *

BEFORE I LEFT for my first trip abroad, I asked my late maternal grandmother, who was a fantastic cook, to tell me the recipe for “adai,” a crispy multi-lentil pancake that is very easy to make but hard to get right. I probed her about ratios, texture, timing and sequence. Clearly she was not used to being asked these questions. Cooking for her came from aromas, the tactile memory of her fingers, and visual and auditory cues. Once I was done with my interrogation, she asked me to show her what I had written. She said, “You missed one ingredient. Write it down.” I looked at her, pen in hand, waiting. “Patience. That's the ingredient you are missing. If you give anything enough time, it will turn out delicious. You can approximate with all the other ingredients.” 

— Krish Ashok, 2020; from “Masala Lab”

* * *

* * *


And yes, I am sorta targeting you to try to understand why half this country has gone insane.

LOL – I should put that on my résumé, or perhaps my gravestone!

I hold these truths to be self-evident:

1. I am a firm centrist (a moderate leftie)

2. Which means capitalism requires a LOT of controlling

3. Republicans only care about the rich and eliminating any controls

4. They care about money and power more than the country

5. They win elections by owning the rural base, and cheating in cities

6. They are in-your-face racist and don’t apologise for it

7. OTOH, the Democrats are schizophrenic and incoherent, with disunited factions

8. They should get 80% of the vote but barely make 50%, and why?

9. They are as dependent on big corporate money as the GOP are

10. They are extremely conservative compared to almost all social democratic | labor parties in other democracies

11. The US is immensely complicated by the African-American history and legacy, and more recently, Latinx immigration.

But mostly I don’t see a huge difference between the two parties – there are differences, but not a yawning civil-war gulf. The political system is a thing to behold! Something that inefficient, unworkable, and prone to corruption – is either the greatness of America, or an unending tragedy.

I disliked Donald Trump intensely, and have little time for Joe Biden (he is a hack with baggage, and too old). I think any one of Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton, or indeed Kamala Harris, would be a far better President than either of them.

There is strong federal structure, and it’s been there a long time – call it the unelected “Deep State” if you wish, but I don’t buy most of the conspiracies that are ascribed to it … I certainly don’t believe stuff without substantial evidence, and nor do I believe it is a pro-Democratic cabal.

That is ludicrous …it has been working for the capitalist class – the corporations and the elite – for generations, especially through the Cold War. Pockets of it might have been anti-Trump (not without cause), but that did not and does not make it pro-Democrat.

And globalism isn’t a conspiracy – it is how capitalism works! The same forces sent jobs from Gary Indiana to Guangdong. 

And to the crucial issue – there are tens and tens of millions of people out there (a lot of them young) who can’t get a job, or won’t ever get a job. Not many people love working 48 weeks a year for 45 years, but we do it because we want to live in some comfort, want to keep our minds occupied and challenged, and we wish to contribute.

How people can live in mired poverty, for years, even generations, and not be bored and angry – is totally outside my experience and understanding … I’m white, educated, middle-class and motivated.

I agree that the “gimme” culture and uncontrolled immigration are huge issues, and getting worse. The superstructure cannot support the American economy (and society) for much longer. It is burdened by debt, hyper-complexity, energy prices, and resource crises.

I won’t attack the victims, but I don’t have any answers (and Trump didn’t either), and nor are they problems caused or owned by the Dems … I think that is unsupportable.

* * *

* * *


Writer Thomas Frank published a piece in The Guardian last week called, “Liberals want to blame rightwing ‘misinformation’ for our problems. Get real.”

The article’s basic argument was that rather than look inward for reasons the Democratic Party message isn’t succeeding, and why political extremism is on the rise, Democrats have instead opted for a strategy of “shushing the world.”

Frank addressed the “clampdown mania” of the Internet era, expressing puzzlement over a change in how Democrats look at the speech issue now, versus how traditional liberals almost unanimously viewed the issue in the not-so-distant-past.

“Criticism, analysis, mockery, and protest: these were our weapons,” he wrote. “Censorship and blacklisting were, with important exceptions, the weapons of the puritanical right.”

To say the piece didn’t go over as he expected is an understatement. Although some liked it, he was stunned by the reaction from people he once considered political allies. “People were like, ‘Fuck you, Frank’!” he says, half-laughing.

Not long ago, Frank might have been American liberalism’s favorite writer. As detailed in last summer’s review of The People, No!, he became a pop-culture sensation with his 2004 book, ‘What’s the Matter With Kansas? How Conservatives Won the Heart of America.’ That book came out at a time when American liberalism was first beginning to grapple with a new phenomenon: a loss of status as the typical political theology of an ordinary working-class person.

“There was a time when liberalism was the dominant tradition in America,” he says. “Democrats always controlled the House of Representatives. And they couldn’t figure out what happened to them.” In 2004, ‘What’s the Matter With Kansas?’ offered an explanation that was soothing, on its face. The core thesis was that cultural issues replaced economics as the primary driver of decision-making in the heartland, and Republicans were winning by appeals to evangelical Christianity, racism, and other passions. This explanation was alluring to a lot of Democrats at the time, among other things because it absolved the party of blame for losing influence. After all, if people in Kansas were superstitious racists, what’s a K Street Democratic consultant to do? You can’t pander to Klansmen and idiots.

Many Democrats agreed with Frank’s idea that modern Republicanism was a bait-and-switch: rail against busing or Piss Christ, then get ordinary voters to ignore “their own interests,” i.e. economics. Few, however, remembered the end of the book, which warned of a negative trajectory within the Democratic Party. While Republicans “were industriously fabricating their own class-based language of the right” and “made their populist appeal to blue-collar voters,” Democrats were “giving those same voters — their traditional base — the big brush-off.”

This warning — that becoming the party of “affluent, white-collar professionals who are liberal on social issues” would ultimately backfire — proved prophetic, not that it did Frank any good. As he continued to issue this same warning with books like ‘Listen, Liberal’ — which came out during the 2016 presidential cycle and predicted with hideous accuracy of what was to come — he found himself less and less in demand as a green room invite or guest editorialist.

Nobody in the commercial press wanted to hear that ditching the Democrats’ historical blue-collar coalition formed during the F.D.R. years had been a bad idea. Big media companies now wanted voices who made railing against Trump their expertise.

It wasn’t that Frank liked Trump, he just didn’t find saying the obvious interesting. “I mean, kicking Donald Trump?” he says. “Yeah, the guy’s stupid, but making fun of stupid people, that’s not a challenge.” For the same reason, Frank notes, he never wrote about censorship before, because being for free speech for a liberal was such a “no-brainer” that it never even occurred to him.

The type of liberalism Frank knew growing up, and for which he was such a prominent symbol in the Bush years (when “libruls” were commodities hated as fervently as terrorists in some circles), would never have entertained censorship as a serious solution to anything. What happened? Why has American liberalism gone through such a sea change on this issue? 


  1. Michael Koepf March 31, 2021

    “woke painful” Excellent. Big Bruce coins new term that is spot-on and perfect for our times. On the other hand: “the KZYX-feminist-Democratic Party-Bly-Guy-enviro bloc” although dead on accurate is a bit of a stretch.

  2. George Hollister March 31, 2021

    I don’t know if this is the beginning of a trend, but in the last few weeks there has been an international selloff of US Treasuries. The reasons stated by the sellers is dubious. The FED continues to increase its purchases, an action known in pedestrian vernacular as printing money. I don’t expect anyone in Washington from Congress, to the Treasury Dept., to the FED, and of course MSM to pay any attention, but the everyday Joe should. What we have been doing with bigger is better government deficit spending for the last twelve years eventually will end. How? I don’t know. But it will end, and it will be ugly.

    • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

      “…pedestrian vernacular,” George. I thought you were against using the kind of precise diction referred to by ignoramuses as “big words”! Looks like all this commenting on line has improved your vocabulary. I can just see you out on the log deck yelling at the crew, “You flaneurs knock off the pedestrian vernacular and get back to work!” Ha!

      • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

        When I lived in Wyoming I wrote a Dictionary of Big Words and sent the MS to a publishing house in New York, a place I found in Writer’s Digest. A couple of years went by and I never heard from the publisher, so I checked into it and found out the place had been out of business for a long time, and the Writer’s Digest I had referenced was out of date. My dictionary was full of phraes like, “Delete the felicitous equine feces,” translated to, “Cut the happy horseshit”; and “Phylogenetic regression,” which I rendered as “Turned into an animal,” silly things like that, written for my co-workers at the sawmill. A pity I didn’t have the presence of mind to make a copy of my MS, but I was a callow youth with a ready wit, an agile mind and my reading fresh in my head. Now, alas, my powers of entertainment and discernment have all dissipated without a trace.

        • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

          Still, George, your “pedestrian vernacular” would fit right in such a dictionary. Maybe we could collaborate on an online Dictionary of Big Words, do all the unlettered dolts a service, and charge some minimal fee, which we could donate to a suitable charity, Society for the Improvement of the Working Stiffs Vocabulary (of which we would be the highly paid staff). What do you think?

      • George Hollister March 31, 2021

        The book I learned to write from was from Strunk & White. Write for the reader, not yourself. Use common words. Keep it simple, and short. If the writer does that, he/she will more likely be read. BTW, Strunk & White is not a spelling book.

        • chuck dunbar March 31, 2021

          I like that, George. And yes, spelling is tough as we get older– both my wife and I lament that, as we used to be good spellers, now, not so much. Still, we have some level of wisdom now that we did not have earlier, as well as a sense of time and history that we also lacked. Tradeoffs abound.

        • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

          The essential Strunk & White was on my desk, too, George. Hemmingway, I expect, made The Elements of Style really shine by taking its simplicity explicitly. No big words in any of his characters’ mouths. Laconic to the point of terse, but never inscrutable. A brevity of lip even the Brits would envy. Stick w/ it; and remember this, too: You’ll never go wrong w/ the pub cheese.

        • Marmon March 31, 2021

          I was trained to write at a level my client’s could understand. Not in College, but by my first Program Manager who trained me all things child welfare. Judges don’t like wordiness either, they like you to just get to point and don’t show off. They have to read that shit too, and they don’t like it.


    • Harvey Reading March 31, 2021

      Pedestrian vernacular?

      Sounds dumb to me, like saying the same thing twice, for no good reason. Aint that what some call tautology, or redundancy for no good reason? Then again, I never expect much from you.

      • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

        Some simpletons, I suspect, would call it tautology. But there’s no contradiction in terms, no oxymoron. Vernacular, like a handful of synonyms, only refers to a vocabulary specific to a distinct district, not necessarily a social class — which, in this instance — the word “pedestrian” identifies.

        As for the purpose, it is the same as for all other instances of purple prose: To impress the simpleton; but of course, it has the opposite effect.

        • Harvey Reading March 31, 2021

          Nonsense. It is certainly redundant, for show, and as a sad attempt by the writer to appear wiser (or more clever) than observation would suggest. And it is no stretch at all to call it tautological as well. If you don’t like Merriam Webster, so be it. I do.

  3. Lee Edmundson March 31, 2021

    Note to Chris Castleman & Fiddleheads: When driving your car do you stop at stop signs? Do you wear a seat belt when driving your car? Do you have automobile insurance? Each and every one of these is an encroachment on your personal freedom Dude. Yet you, what? Don’t do/have/follow any of them? Of course you stop at traffic stop signs, wear your seat belt and have automobile insurance. As any, and all, responsible community citizens do,
    Your phony baloney protest about masks is a mere exercise in personal vanity, not freedom.
    It’s not about personal responsibility. It’s about community responsibility. A community you — like it or not — are a part of. Integral.
    Hippie dippy anarcho/libertarian Don’t tread on me exhortations are all well and good when you’re alone in the redwoods baying at the moon, but they have little to no place in civil society. Please get the picture and join the parade.
    Your face mask protects both you and me from a pestilent disease. My face mask protects both you and me from the same pestilence. Not rocket science here, Chris.
    Please cease your adolescent petulance. Social rules are not oppression, they are safeguards for us all, friends and strangers alike.
    Covid protocols have been devised by those wiser than us. They insure our very safety. Why would you rebel against basic public safety?
    Stop at stop signs. Wear a mask. Wash your hands. Follow Covid protocols. What could be more simple, more basic?
    Your protest endangers the public health. Why would you want to become a danger to public health? As it stands now, Fiddleheads has become a danger to public health. Why? What for? To what end?
    Sad to say, I will not frequent your establishment, which for me is too bad, because you have the best french fries I’ve ever had. Alas.
    Try and wrap your mind around this: your “freedom” to pose a risk to my life and health is not your freedom, but, instead, your tyranny. Your business model poses a dire threat to my health and safety. Why would you want to do this? Vanity.

    • George Hollister March 31, 2021

      A vaccine card verifying you have been vaccinated and it is a month out should allow one to trash the mask. According to the CDC, yesterday, a vaccine will prevent Covid, and prevent someone from carrying Covid. This is good news. We will be done with this.

      • Harvey Reading March 31, 2021

        What will CDC peddle tomorrow…? Or next week?

      • Marmon March 31, 2021

        Don’t let Ted Williams hear that kind of talk.


    • Michael Koepf March 31, 2021

      “…wrap your mind around…” This expression is so trite and cliché. Although totally vaccinated for covid 19, I’m a masked-up American. Reason one: to quell the fears of others. Two: to avoid being verbally or physically attacked by a mask fanatic. “I will not frequent your establishment establishment…” Why not let it go at that? Get your french-fries at McDonald’s. Restaurant owners are having a hard enough time as it is. Leave this guy alone.

      • Lee Edmundson March 31, 2021

        Michael, you miss the larger point to pick nits. If you’ve ever had Fiddleheads french fries, you’d know what I mean.
        One person’s “freedom” just may be another person’s tyranny..

        • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

          Mike has a talent for the culinary arts himself. Anybody who he disagrees w/ he pats ’em out w/ high-handed dismissals, cuts ’em into caricatures w/ a generic cookie-cutter, sprinkles ’em w/ gratuitous invective, and hangs ’em on the wall as half-baked conversation pieces. He’s an artiste, really, right up there w/ Zola and Renoir.

    • Rye N Flint March 31, 2021

      Here Here! Thank you for unmasking the delusion of the solo male “Individual liberty” cause. It does a great disservice to society to think that one person alone can provide, or does provide all of one’s needs. We need each other, period.

  4. Cotdbigun March 31, 2021

    Elizabeth Vrenios: The sky is falling! The sky is falling! The poor lady is dismayed at the rise in covid cases . She informs us of this horror underneath the daily covid report that informs us that 2 new cases were reported in Mendocino County. The cases have ” risen ” all the way up to 2.
    Your dismayed is my elated.

  5. mendoblather March 31, 2021

    “ANOTHER EARLY MORNING of frost fans. (Tuesday) The worst hit neighborhood is SoBo, South Boonville, where frost fans from three vineyards intersect to make sleep not only impossible, but woke painful.”

    If only my permitted cultivator neighbors were kind enough to blow their generator noise for a few morning hours instead of the 24/7 aural onslaught I’m forced to endure.

    I never thought of small claims court. I’ll look into it.

  6. Rye N Flint March 31, 2021

    RE: A FEW MILES north of Cloverdale on Highway 101 a big rig overturned, spilling debris (recycling materials)

    Waste (Mis)Management Corporation doesn’t pay Mendocino county residents their CRV fees back, because they have stopped the buy back recycling service. It’s been over a year of this scam now. They are pocketing millions of dollars in recycling, first under the guise of “China won’t take it anymore, were back stocked” to “Sorry, COVID restrictions, we can’t accept them right now”, both of which are invalid excuses. They are also claiming all this unsorted recycling as “addition refuse” and getting even more money from the county for it’s disposal… which is what was in the overturned Truck. The Mafia runs the waste disposal in Itay… what’s the American equivalent?

  7. Marmon March 31, 2021


    Mitch Clogg use of Wikipedia to try to help cancel Dereck Chauvin is ridiculous in my mind. None of it has anything to do with what the officer is being tried for this week. I’ve been watching every minute of his trial and I believe he will not be found guilty for anything but maybe manslaughter at the very most.


    • Stephen Rosenthal March 31, 2021

      So now you’re condoning murder. I didn’t think you could sink any lower, but evidently I was wrong.

      • Marmon March 31, 2021

        It wasn’t murder, are you watching the trial? Involuntary manslaughter at the most.


        • chuck dunbar March 31, 2021

          The saddest, and perhaps truest, part of all this, is the fact that this tragedy occurred due to a $20 bill that may have been a forgery. It is an example of the “over-policing” that occurs in some cities, where the police think they must insure that they are in control, or at least appear to be. They are The Force that must be in command. Give the guy a citation to appear in court and move on? No, go to the bitter end and show who is in control, no matter the cost. And then we have a dead man, whose life is gone and family is in grief, as well as a police officer whose life is ruined. There must be a better way….

          • Marmon March 31, 2021

            the guy was a mess, he couldn’t even drive away from the scene because he was so f’ed up. He was behind the wheel and could have put a lot of people in danger. The cops didn’t react until after they saw how messed up he was. At that point he was not only a danger to himself, but possibly a danger to others. Get your head out of the fog Chuck.


        • mendoblather April 1, 2021

          Voluntary manslaughter that was completely avoidable.

    • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

      The prosecution must not be very intense if you think the jury (mostly white, eh?) will acquit. Just from the publicity and video, most of the world has already found the defendant guilty. I shudder to think such a bad cop could get off, but we must remember verdict in the “stand your ground” murder trial of a vigilante cop who committed a crime of equal repugnance.

      • Marmon March 31, 2021

        That video everyone saw was not the only one. The cops had body cameras that tell the other side of the story. Good luck to the prosecution to try to prove intent, it ain’t going to happen.


        • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

          The charges and the jury instructions concerning intent both indicate that the prosecutor will be happy with a slap on the hand and a fine…
          “Justice has been served,” will be the smug statement to the press. Along with some platitudes about “no tolerance” for bad cops, and “prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

        • Bruce Anderson March 31, 2021

          The cops have the run-up to the murder. Doubt they have the film of it.

          • Marmon March 31, 2021

            The cops body cams show the officers struggling with the suspect for 12 minutes before any bystander started filming. The public saw those videos for the first time today. The guy was high as a kite and was slinging 3 of them around like they were rag dolls before they finally took him down. Furthermore, cause of death is going to be pretty much what proves the officer is not guilty of murder. The suspect was saying he couldn’t breath long before they took him down.


          • Marmon March 31, 2021

            Innocent till proven guilty Anderson, Innocent till proven guilty


      • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

        All of which is to say, you should change your title from Blue Lives Matter, to Blue Lives Matter More Than Black Lives Matter.

        “I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of the courage of a cop with a gun.”
        Atticus Finch, for the defense, addressing the jury, in To Kill A Mockingbird

      • George Hollister March 31, 2021

        It is better to have no cop than a bad cop. That said, bad cops are hired, and in this case by a city that theoretically didn’t need to do that, but they did. Tombstone hired a bad cop named Wyatt Earp, and he became famous. There are many examples of the same.

        • Bruce McEwen March 31, 2021

          True, George. And the people who hired the so-called “bad” cop appear reluctant to throw the book at him. It would reflect poorly on their own judgement, for one thing, but more importantly, keep in mind that the prosecutor is one of the more significant entities the cops rely on to back them up, especially in instances like this. The Twin Cities PD would never have filed charges in this case w/out tremendous public outrage; but, still, they prosecutor will have to work w/ the rest of the force, which entails an element of loyalty, fierce loyalty, I might add, or consider falling on his sword.

          What was it Jack Nicholson said to Tom Cruise in that movie about GitMo?

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