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Mendocino County Today: Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023

Cold Snow | Between Storms | 253 Opened | Rain Rhyme | ID Found | Line Crews | Herb Event | River Access | Taproom Music | Therapy Dog | Solon Visit | Tech Support | Skunked Pet | Weedy Tales | Ed Notes | Celebrating Women | Albion v Caltrans | Whale Walk | 4H Presentations | Yesterday's Catch | Country Life | Carters | Ash Wednesday | Om | Avedon Exhibit | Starbucks Strikers | Oldest Ballplayer | Bad Food | Recycled Butter | Billionaire Qualifications | Real Art | Elder Advice | Ukraine | Snyder Triangulating

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A WINTER STORM continues to impact Northwest California into tomorrow. Cold Arctic air continues to advect into our region as the system strengthens and begins its journey south by late tomorrow. This system will bring enhanced risk of convective storms capable of producing small hail at the coast, low elevation snow, and very low surface temperatures. A short lived ridge will set in early this weekend helping bring near record low temperatures by tomorrow and Saturday mornings. Then, another low pressure system is expected to bring more precipitation to the area by early next week. (NWS)

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Vultures drying out in between rain clouds, Charles Vineyard, Anderson Valley

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CALTRANS REPORTED Highway 253 closed last night, but is now open.

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IT'S RAINING, it's pouring; 
The old man is snoring. 
He went to bed and he 
Bumped his head 
And he couldn't get up in the morning.

It's snowing, it's blowing
The old man is growing
He ate so much one day for lunch 
Every part of him was showing.

It warm out and sunny
The old man loves honey
He tried to seize 
A batch from the bee's
And they didn't find it funny.

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Thank you to the dedicated and highly trained men and women working those line crews for PG&E yesterday. You have my admiration and appreciation for a job well done under demanding conditions.

PG&E as a corporate entity is one of the very worst actors in the public utility sector. And that's saying a lot. Absolutely dreadful, at least in terms of their safety culture and ethical responsibility.

But like the men and women in the military and other service organizations, the dedication to service and skill of the people in the field extends above and beyond their sometimes incompetent, greedy, and not-very-nice bosses.

Thanks again all the people in PG&E boots on the ground and in the air yesterday.

Andrew Scully 


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AVA News Service

In response to a conceptual proposal put forward by the Anderson Valley Land Trust (AVLT), representatives from key potential partners met together Tuesday, February 21 at the Greenwood Road Bridge over the Navarro River, near the entrance of Hendy Woods State Park. Joining the get-together were representatives of the Anderson Valley Community Services District, AV Fire Department, California Department of Parks, Mendocino Redwood Company, the Hendy Woods Community, Mendocino County technical staff, two Mendocino County Supervisors, Congressman Jared Huffman, and several interested community members, including a high school student. 

The Greenwood Road Bridge is Anderson Valley’s only public beach access on the river, and the area is also widely used by visitors to Hendy Woods. On any hot day there will be cars parked up and down Greenwood Road and families and young people scrambling with coolers and floaties down and up the steep bluff along the water. Rock formations and a bend in the river create pools for wading and swimming, depending on the water year. 

Although the area has been used for swimming as long as anyone can remember, currently there is no official access, paths, bathrooms, trash collection, or parking. The push for the beach access upgrade is driven by concerns that the expansion of the bridge footprint from the current one lane to two, a decision that has already been made by Mendocino County due to safety concerns, will result in less access for river users and more pollution into the Navarro River, which is already listed by the federal government as impaired for both sediment and temperature. 

AVLT hopes to gather support for improving the area as the culminating step after Mendocino County’s planned bridge project, scheduled to begin as early as 2025. Present at the gathering was Alicia Meier Winniker, deputy director of engineering at the Mendocino County Department of Transportation, who indicated that funding for the bridge project had already been secured. Patrick Miller, who is spearheading the project for AVLT, notes that all versions of the County’s planning documents for the project indicate that the field across from the entrance to Hendy Woods, which is owned by the Mendocino Redwood Company (MRC), will be used for staging equipment and creating access to the River during construction. 

Although Mendocino County is struggling to pay for maintenance and upkeep of its existing parks, Supervisor Glenn McGourty spoke strongly in favor of the benefits of parks and public access to open space. Supervisor Ted Williams, who like McGourty, is on the Board’s ad hoc parks committee, was also present to review the site and hear ideas and concerns.

John Andersen, Mendocino Redwood Company’s Director of Forest Policy, was part of the gathering. Although he was non-committal regarding the project, he also did not raise immediate objections.

Loren Rex, the Chief Ranger for the Park District and a long-time advocate for Hendy Woods, acknowledged the need for improvements, but was not in a position to be able to make any commitment, especially as the effort is clearly in the brainstorming stage without firm proposals yet put forward. 

Kathy Bailey of the Hendy Woods Community, a group that formed when the State planned to close 70 state parks in 2011, including Hendy Woods, asked those present to make a commitment to continued free access for local people. Even though Hendy Woods is Anderson Valley’s only large public open space, Valley residents are still required to pay the $8 Day Use entry fee, a sore point for many in the community. 

Congressman Jared Huffman, who played a positive role in helping to keep parks open during the 2011 crisis, and who was specifically helpful regarding Hendy Woods, indicated he would maintain an interest in the project as the community’s ideas became plans. He indicated his family has spent a fair amount of time at Hendy Woods over the years so he knows how important the area is to the community. 

Key features of the hoped-for improvements are likely to be off-road parking, bathroom facility, trash collection, and better access to the river. Besides the considerable effort that will be required to make this project a reality on the ground, a much more difficult issue will be funding and responsibility for ongoing maintenance and upkeep. While there is a general recognition about the importance of access to outdoor activities and spending time in the natural world, how to pay for it in the long run is still very much up in the air. 

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Every other Tuesday from 1-2 pm

The Ukiah Branch Library welcomes adults to read to or simply de-stress with Emma, a certified & trained therapy dog who enjoys visiting with adult humans. Studies show that petting & interacting with a therapy dog can alleviate symptoms of anxiety & boost your mood. Drop into the Ukiah branch to say hi to Emma! This event will take place every other Tuesday from 1-2 pm beginning on February 14th. 

Please contact the Ukiah Branch Library at 707-463-4490 for more information. 

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I appreciate the time. I hope we get it done.

Dear Congressman Huffman, Supervisor Williams, Jenny and Jez,

Many thanks for your time today and for Jez and Jenny's time on Friday. I think you can see the needs of this school system are beyond huge and outside of the scope of what a district office of five can accomplish. Our kids are learning in an environment that is unhealthy, unsafe, and unequal.

Congressman Huffman, Aide Mary Ann Grezenda, Student Body President Eric Perez, Mascot Willow Thomas-Douglas.

I look forward to hearing how we can partner together to bring equity into this high poverty and high Latinx population.

Most important in my view right now Congressman Huffman is for your outreach to Senator McGuire and Assemblyman Wood on these conditions and what are some immediate options that can help my kids including a trailer bill to replace the septic at the elementary and the repair at the high school so our bond funds remain whole.

Supervisor Williams, I will send you the permit number as soon as the engineer sends it to me.

I know I sound tough and exasperated. I am tough and exasperated. What I see my kids experience makes me weep and rage with fury because this unacceptable learning environment doesn't happen in other counties in the State.

Thank you for stepping up and being here. I will be your biggest cheerleader when we create together amazing change for kids in Anderson Valley. 

Louise Simson


Anderson Valley Unified School District

Every Student • Every Possibility • No Matter What

Cell: 707-684-1017

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Hello Anderson Valley!

Hope all is well and thank you for your help with this! Note: our Tech Support Events, as with all our events, are open to everyone.

We are considering changing the way we conduct our tech support events, as they have unfortunately been ill attended. Usually there are about 15+ AV High School students eager to help and only a couple of people there to receive it…

We are trying to figure out a new way to approach, here are a couple of options - please let us know which ones you would be interested in:

1) Tech Presentations: We have a couple of regular volunteers who would be interested in giving a presentation on a tech topic - So far a volunteer is willing to talk about using iPhones and tips to make them more user friendly for seniors… would that interest you? and/or what other specific topics would you be interested in learning more about? We need to know what you want help with, so our volunteers know what to cover - thank you! Also, is there a topic that you would be interested in presenting on?

2) Roundtable Tech Support: Another suggestion would be to have a roundtable discussion where people share their tech knowledge/ tips  (with smartphones, mac and PC programs and features, facebook, etc) with each other. If questions come up that we can't solve as a group then we could look for solutions online together. We are bound to learn helpful tricks from each other.

Please let me know your thoughts - thank you!

Remember that for our Village Members there is one on one support with our tech support volunteers to help configure a cell phone, PC and Mac, setting up a printer/ TV and using social media.

Thank you for helping us support our community!

Anica Williams, Anderson Valley Village Coordinator, Cell: 707-684-9829, Email:

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by Jim Shields

Be sure and check out the SF Chron’s story on weed woes here in Mendoland (“California County’s Cannabis Industry On The Brink Of Irreversible Failure”). It’s another in a long string of articles by outside media that shoots blanks in even coming close to accurately setting out the total failure that is our Pot Ordinance. 

I knew immediately I was about to read a true stinkeroo when the reporter introduced his two primary sources: Michael Katz and Hannah Nelson.

Katz is the paid lobbyist for the Mendocino Cannabis Alliance (MCA), and Nelson is their lawyer.

Both have been actively engaged, along with county bureaucrats and so-called cannabis “working groups,” with the development of the unworkable ordinance, so for them now to criticize the end product is hilarious.

This six-plus year ordinance debacle would make great comedy if not for the fact that our local economies have been wrecked, in large part due to the collaboration of county officials and various self-proclaimed weed experts.

The simple facts are not even straight in the Chron story. For example, “After six years of pot legalization, only 12 of Mendocino County’s 832 active cannabis farms have received annual licenses, according to an SFGATE analysis of county and Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) records. That means only 1% of the county’s cultivators are fully licensed — one of the worst rates in the state.”

That’s not even close to being accurate.

I’ve estimated there are 10,000 to 13,000 active pot farmers in Mendocino County. In the past, Katz and MCA say there are approximately 10,000 growers, so we’re both on the same page.

Based on the MCA estimate, the percentage of “fully licensed” growers is 0.0012%, not 1%. Everyone knows that over 90% of pot farmers have never gone near the county seat and its Weed Ordinance process.

And guess what? They never will because they had this deal figured out from the get-go.

Recently, I commented on Mark Scaramella’s excellent report on “Veg-Mod Hell.”

I also provided brief background on this bewildering issue of the Weed Ordinance’s provision prohibiting the removal of even a single tree for the purpose of cultivating pot, so-called “vegetation modification,” aka “Veg-Mod Hell.”

Here’s an excerpt from a column I wrote six years ago on the topic. 

Back on July 18, 2017, just a couple of months after Supervisors approved the new Cannabis Ordinance, the representatives of two state resource agencies, on their own motion, addressed County officials on potential problems with their pot rules.

The two agencies were CAL FIRE and the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW).

From the outset of their remarks, the state resource agencies’ reps pointedly but politely bared their fangs on the County’s problematical environmental review process and the enforcement issue.

CAL FIRE’s Unit Resource Manager Craig Pederson spoke on the lack of enforcement regarding tree removal associated with marijuana cultivation.

“CAL FIRE was satisfied with the final ordinance language which clearly prohibited tree removal” for grow sites, Pederson said.

But, he stated, “In practice we find that not to be the case as conversion of timberland to cultivate marijuana has continued.”

He pointed out that “the number of issues and potential CAL FIRE law enforcement cases are escalating …”

He told the Supes, “CAL FIRE encourages the county to promptly and consistently enforce the cultivation ordinance. The ordinance must be enforced by the county, as lead agency, to ensure responsible agencies’ (such as CAL FIRE) written and verbal concerns are addressed.”

He reminded the Supes that the ordinance created a “zero tolerance for tree removal. It doesn’t allow a single (commercial) tree to be removed for cultivation purposes.”

He told the Supes even CAL FIRE doesn’t have a rule that restrictive, but it’s in your ordinance so you need to enforce it or get rid of it.

Naturally, the Supes did neither.

For over six years, you never heard a pip or a squeak from MCA, their lawyer, or any of the pot “working groups” regarding the insane “single tree removal” provision until its recent morph into “Veg-Mod Hell.”

I’ve always said and I still believe that problems just don’t happen, people make them happen.

That’s the history of weed legalization in this county.

(Jim Shields is the Mendocino County Observer’s editor and publisher,, the long-time district manager of the Laytonville County Water District, and is also chairman of the Laytonville Area Municipal Advisory Council. Listen to his radio program “This and That” every Saturday at 12 noon on KPFN 105.1 FM, also streamed live:

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EARLIER THIS WEEK, Mario Montes, 26, of Covelo was walking along Tabor Lane when he was attacked by a pack of wild dogs, nine of them by Montes' count. Montes, young and strong, managed to beat the dogs off him but he was hospitalized for his wounds. Imagine a child or any other vulnerable person similarly beset.

WHICH BRINGS US to the County's animal control program. Like, uh, there isn't one. There used to be two federal trappers. They spent much time suppressing wild dogs, heavy on pitbulls abandoned when outlaw pot growers had no more use for them as guard dogs. It was abandoned pit bulls that attacked Mr. Montes in Covelo. The Animal Shelter in Ukiah has more unadoptable pitbulls than any other breed, many of them abandoned by love drug farmers.

BESET by anthromorphs led by John Spitz of Laytonville, the Supervisors cancelled the federal trappers in whose place they adopted a “wildlife exclusion” policy consisting of, well, fencing. Today, if you have a bear camping out in your carport, nobody is likely to respond while your call is routed ultimately to Fish and Wildlife who for sure will not respond or even answer the phone.

THERE WAS A perfectly qualified lady, also from Laytonville, who applied to be the County's wildlife staff person but she wasn't “licensed.”

SPITZ AND COMPANY took a visceral dislike for a federal trapper called ‘Dead Dog Brennan.’ Spitz and Company claimed Brennan was a little too indiscriminately lethal in his policing of the wild things, but if a pack of feral pitbulls is roaming your property he's definitely the go-to guy. And he's forgotten more about Northcoast wildlife than most self-certified experts ever knew. 

ALTHOUGH Dead Dog is retired, he works free for lots of people who still call him to resolve their animal problems, and in most cases he does it without killing the problem critter.

ROUND VALLEY'S Tribal Council says they are going to assign someone to take care of their feral dog problem. Shooting them before they kill someone is the quickest way to suppress the dangerous dogs, and there are plenty more of them roaming the hills of the County.

WILD PACKS OF DOGS Are Attacking Covelo Residents and Killing Livestock: 26-year-old Covelo resident Mario Montes is in the hospital after nine dogs converged on him and attacked him yesterday morning.…

FIVE DOGS INVOLVED IN RECENT COVELO ATTACK CAPTURED: Just days after a Covelo man was attacked by a pack of wild dogs and hospitalized, Mendocino County’s Animal Services Department has taken five dogs into custody and will soon euthanize them for their involvement.…

UKIAH is going to war with French Broom, Scotch Broom's tenacious cousin. I'm betting on the French to prevail much like Scotch Broom has successfully resisted all efforts to eradicate it at Caspar, most prominently. A friend tells me goats will eat it but otherwise the plant is pretty much indestructible. Originally imported as ornamentals, the prolific brooms, unattended, soon swept up otherwise vacant landscapes. I kinda like its merry yellow blooms myself, but whole fields of it — the brooms don't share — are aesthetically contraindicated. Ukiah is asking for volunteers to sweep the French broom from the west hills because it's highly flammable. It's a job getting rid of it, for sure; but good on Ukiah for trying.

I THINK it's evident that Biden is past it, and his past it-ness is only more evidence that the mainstem media — ABC and the major tv networks, NPR (of course) and CNN and MSNBC — all extensions of the Democratic Party, don't dare to mention Biden and unfit in the same sentence. Talk about naked emperors, but the glee from the fascists at Biden falling on Air Force One's stairs today isn't evidence of his senility, anybody can fall, and only sadists think it's funny. What isn't mentioned in all the guffawing about Biden's spill is how fast the old guy got back up and continued climbing into the plane. 

I'M PLENTY BORING without relaying my dreams to trapped readers, but lately, with earthquakes in the news, and little daily quakes a fact of California life, especially here on the Northcoast, I've suffered serial nocturnal earthquakes, all of them pegged to a bothersome metaphor I read somewhere that the earth is like a cracked hard boiled egg, that fault lines are globally connected however tenuously, and one day… I'd prefer dreams about sunny days at the ballpark or a reprise of one I had recently of Craig Stehr leading a hari krishna parade up a flower-laden State Street where Craig levitates the County Courthouse.

A MUST READ for all Californians should be Marc Reisner's “A Dangerous Place,” a clear explanation of how the state's tectonic plates periodically crack California's geologic topography, complete with Reisner's hypothetical but fact-based scenario of what we can expect with the Big One. A most ominous fact is this one: if earthquakes occurred in California with the frequency and intensity they did in the 19th century, LA and San Francisco would be uninhabitable.

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For everyone traveling to the coast via Highway 128, the gateway to the Mendocino Coast is the panoramic vista of grassland, ocean, and coastal terraces just south of Albion. It’s hard to not feel a sense of wonder when you arrive at this coastal cathedral. At least for now. Because on February 10, the California Coastal Commission did Caltrans’ dirty work when they voted to severely reshape this beautiful, environmentally sensitive region.

By a 7–1 vote, the commissioners allowed Caltrans to widen the Highway 1 road prism by grading the Navarro Ridge wildlife corridor and adjacent Navarro Point Preserve. Thanks to their vote, dramatic marine terraces and slopes will be replaced by highly engineered, slide-prone slopes up to 60 feet high.

Caltrans says it’s about safety. The truth is, Caltrans’ goal is to build, piece by piece, a straighter, faster Highway 1 from Navarro Grade to Dark Gulch — a mini freeway pointed straight at Caltrans’ proposed demolition of the historic Albion River Bridge. There are cheaper, less destructive ways to protect motorist safety and the coastal environment. There’s no good reason to speed up Highway 1 and deform the terrain surrounding the Navarro Point Preserve.

Why did the commissioners rubber-stamp Caltrans’ plans? Perhaps because Caltrans pays the Coastal Commission over $1 million a year to receive preferential design advice and permit processing. Something stinks about this arrangement. To learn more about Caltrans’ destructive plans for Albion, visit the Albion Bridge Stewards website at

High-resolution photos of the project area are here:

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Young people from across Mendocino County will gather together to share their passion and hone their public speaking skills at the annual Mendocino County 4-H Presentation Day this Saturday, February 25. The event will take place at the Ukiah High School and is hosted by the Ukiah Shamrock 4-H Club.

The 4-H youth development program is structured around a “youth led” approach, allowing participants to build knowledge and experiences considering the topics they care about. The annual presentation day allows these young people to share their passion on their chosen topic and to build confidence in communication. 4-H alumni will often mention that they learned how to speak more effectively through their participation in the 4-H presentation program.

A variety of presentation formats are encouraged, from an educational display and talk to skits and cultural arts. This year presentation topics are set to include everything from “Keeping Your Rabbit Cool, Life or Death!”, “Which Fish is Right for You?”, “A Great Warm up for a Great Wrestle!”.

Participants will be judged on timekeeping, following the guidelines, presentation technique and how effectively the information and ideas were presented. Participants who receive a blue or gold award will be put forward to the regional event, and may progress to the California 4-H State Presentation Day.

“Confidence in public speaking is such a fantastic skill, and is used in all parts of our lives from professional careers to day to day interactions. It takes a lot of commitment and courage for these young people to take part in Presentation Day and we’re really excited to see what they have come up with”, commented Gina Weaver, Ukiah Shamrock 4-H Community Leader.

Volunteers from across the community are supporting this event as judges, donors, organizers and as project leaders and guides for the 4-H youth themselves. Breakfast bakes have been donated by Mama’s café in Ukiah to support the participants and organizers.

Hannah Bird, Community Educator, Hopland Research & Extension Center

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Baird, Gomez, Grimes

HEATHER BAIRD, Little River. Controlled substance for sale, maintenance of place for selling, giving or using drugs, child endangerment with possible injury or death, cultivation of more than six pot plants, unspecified offense.

IVAN GOMEZ-TORRES, Fortuna. DUI-alcohol&drugs.

ABIGAIL GRIMES, Ukiah. Domestic abuse.

Harris, Komak, Palley, Swearinger

MASON HARRIS, Ukiah. Probation revocation.


MARK PALLEY, Ukiah. Trespassing, camping on private property.

FELIX SWEARINGER, Covelo. Assault with a firearm, DUI, child endangerment, probation revocation.

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A QUIET SECLUDED LIFE in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one's neighbor — such is my idea of happiness. 

— Leo Tolstoy 

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It's Ash Wednesday, and I'm thinking about my own demise. Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. And I am wondering whether I'll ever cross paths again, in some other plane of existence, with my much-loved childhood friends who are now deceased.

Two friends come immediately to mind. Gary Custick and Larry Murray.

As a kid, Gary taught me how to ride a bicycle. He taught me how to throw a curveball. Gary taught me how to throw a football with a tight spiral. We played countless games of chess. Gary usually beat me. We laughed a lot. We played in the sports fields behind my house almost every day during the summer with other neighborhood kids. We shot hoops into the night in a makeshift basketball court in his backyard.

Larry, meanwhile, was the smartest boy in my grammar school. He was also the most anxious kid. He blinked a lot. Sometimes his voice would get weak and just trail off. Despite his anxiety, Larry once picked up my eyeglasses after they got broken in a fight in our schoolyard, then Larry punched the kid that broke them. Larry protected me against some of the more violent aspects of bullies.

In their early-20s, Gary and Larry both were lost to schizophrenia. Both committed suicide. They committed suicide at Rockland State Hospital. These were not accidental deaths. These were suicides due to negligence, and they were covered up by Rockland State.

When I die, I want to see Gary and Larry again, and I want to see, too, other childhood friends. I want to see my parents and grandparents.

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There are several abandoned orchards where I live in the Ukiah Valley in Mendocino County, California, Old orchards. Old apple trees. Trees as old as 100 years. Dead and dying trees. Stumps. Shrubs and small stands of seedlings and sapling trees interspersed with herbaceous ground cover among the old apple trees.

Herbaceous ground cover, like knotweed, smartweed, milkvetch, sedum, flowering purslane, and fringed corn lily.

Soon, the abandoned orchard will be more successionally advanced abandoned orchards. Mature softwoods will grow over the tops of the old orchards.

Softwoods, like manzanita and madrone.

Every spring, when these old trees squeeze out their few blossoms, I talk with the dead. I sing with them, actually.

I sing from a dying world.

A dying world. A ghastly future of mass extinction and climate disruption. End-stage capitalism. The cruel myth of perpetual economic growth. A population bomb of eight billion people. Violence against women and children. Cartels. Pandemics. Famine. Drought. Conflicts. Wars. And the threat of U.S.-Russian-Chinese nuclear annihilation.

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We sing a duet with the dead --

. sing between apple blossom and radiance

In old, abandoned orchards, small and easy,

. and other spaces more capacious.

We sing a duet with the dead --

. sing of the permanence of stone and steel,

And language, from cities, dead and still.

— John Sakowicz

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CRAIG STEHR: Bonus track: OM Namo Narayanaya

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by Jonah Raskin

Looking at Richard Avedon’s black-and-white photos of the Chicago Seven which peered out at me in a recent issue of The New Yorker felt like seeing the dead. That’s not surprising. With the exception of Lee Weiner, the seven are all dead. Abbie Hoffman is dead, and so are Tom Hayden, Jerry Rubin, Dave Dellinger, Rennie Davis and John Froines, a chemist and anti-war activist, who died July 13, 2022 at the age of 83 in Santa Monica, California. The photos in The New Yorker and the article about them coincide with an exhibit titled “Richard Avedon: Murals” which opened on January 19, 2023 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York where he was born to a middle class Jewish family. The exhibit runs until October 1, 2023. 

“I wanted to see if I could reinvent what a group photo is,” Avedon observed in 2002, two years before he died at the age of 81 and after a long career as a photographer for Elle, Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. He certainly succeeded with his portraits of the Chicago Seven, who were more than a group, less than a tribe and a kind of family that made its way into American living rooms via television. 

No stranger to groups, politics and culture, Avedon published his own photos, some of the civil rights movement in 1964, in a book titled Nothing Personal, with a text by James Baldwin, whom he knew well from DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. 

If Abbie, Tom and Rennie were alive today they would be in their 80s and Dellinger, who was the oldest of the Chicago 7, would be over 100. Bobby Seale, the co-founder with Huey Newton of the Black Panther Party, and a member of the original Chicago 8, is still alive at 86. 

Gagged and bound in Judge Julius Hoffman’s federal courtroom in 1969, Seale’s case was severed from the seven others who had been indicted on charges of conspiracy and crossing state lines for the purpose of rioting. 

In an existential sense, Seale was probably the most guilty of the 8. As the author, with Newton of the Panther Ten Point Program—which called for “an immediate end to police brutality,” “the power to determine the destiny of our Black community” and “land, bread, housing, education, clothing justice and peace”— Seale served as a beacon of light in a time of darkness. The Ten Point program inspired young white men and women to join the Yippies, the movement to end the war in Vietnam, and the cause of women’s liberation. It propelled young Black men and women into the ranks of the Black Panther Party. The Ten Point Program is relevant today.

Seale was also probably the least guilty of the Chicago 8. He didn’t take part in the planning for the protests that occurred in August 1968 when the police rioted and he only spent two days in the Windy City, hardly enough time to cause trouble. Perhaps the Justice Department pulled his name out of a hat. The prosecution needed at least one Black defendant 

Avedon’s larger-than-life images of the Chicago Seven—which are on exhibit in the Metropolitan Museum of Art—are a testament to the enduring legacy of the 1960s, the Conspiracy Trial, and the legendary defendants, as well as the artistry and prescience of the photographer himself. Did he know that his pictures would be viewed more than 50-years after he took them? He probably did. 

After all, in 1968, he had the wisdom, the energy, the gumption and the grit to gather Abbie, Jerry and company, to have them pose in their street clothes and to look “natural,” as one might call it. Not everyone at that time, some of them in the movement and the counterculture, realized that the trial, which began in September 1969 and came to a close in February 1970, and that blurred the line that divided the Sixties from the Seventies, marked a crescendo in the annals of American jurisprudence.

I read about the trial in the press, and watched and listened to news about it on radio and TV. Without a doubt it was the most turbulent time in my life and I was not yet 30, a kid really who demonstrated in the streets of New York and Washington D.C. against the war, aided and abetted the Panthers, ran with the Weathermen, rendezvoused with Abbie, smoked dope, dropped acid, blasted rock ‘n’ roll, wrote for underground papers, experimented with sex and my own gender, and learned heaps about empires and their rise and fall. I also erred on the side of excess, though like Abbie I don’t have regrets. Still, I’m sorry I wasn’t as kind as I would like to have been. 

Avedon’s photos of the Chicago 7 took me back to the Sixties, a time and place and a state of mind which went on trial in Judge Julius Hoffman’s courtroom; the testimony of Allen Ginsberg, who read from Howl, was critical. The guerrilla theater as performed by Jerry and Abbie, who wore Chicago policemen’s garb beneath black judicial robes, set a standard for defiance in courtrooms, while the lawyers for the defendants, Bill Kunstler and Lenny Weinglass, showed that attorneys didn’t have to be on the side of the judge, but rather in solidarity with those on trial. 

Avedon’s photos don’t speak directly to those interwoven stories and the underlying text, but looking at them can’t help but stir up memories of that time and that place when the world seemed unhinged, and the contradictions of the society at large emerged in a courtroom that Abbie called “a neon oven” and meant to evoke an image of fascism. 

I probably won’t fly to New York to see the exhibit. From California it’s a long way to go. But I might. I haven’t ruled out the possibility. I would like to see the life-sized images of the seven while I can still hear and see and when my memories of the Sixties serve me well. 

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98-year-old Sonoma County man, who pitched for the Yankees, is oldest surviving MLB player.

by Austin Murphy

Growing up in Mill Valley, Arthur Schallock didn’t much care for major league baseball. But he was a huge fan of the San Francisco Seals.

Schallock, who will be 99 in April, was a star pitcher at Tamalpais High in the early 1940s. He hoped to play for the Seals, of the Pacific Coast League. The club had been a way station for future Hall of Famers Paul Waner, Lefty Gomez and Joe DiMaggio.

But Seals manager Lefty O’Doul wouldn’t sign the 5-foot 9-inch, 160-pound left-hander, believing him too slight to succeed.

Schallock never did play for the Seals. He had to settle instead for the New York Yankees, who signed him in 1951. To clear a spot for him on the roster, the Yankees demoted a struggling rookie to the minors.

Art Schallock, 98, played five seasons with the New York Yankees from 1951-55. Photo taken in Sonoma on Friday, February 17, 2023. (Christopher Chung/The Press Democrat)

“They sent Mickey Mantle down to make room for me,” Schallock recalled with a chuckle during a recent interview at his house near the city of Sonoma, where he lives with Dona, his wife of 76 years. Mantle got his groove back, and rejoined the Yankees a few months later.

In his five seasons with The Pinstripes, Schallock earned three World Series rings. A pitcher with a nasty curve, a “sneaky fastball” and highly effective change-up — “that was probably my best pitch,” he recalls — Schallock was a foot soldier on teams with such household names as DiMaggio, Mantle, Whitey Ford and Yogi Berra.

 But Schallock has earned added renown, in his twilight years, for his longevity. On July 7, 2022, a former St. Louis Browns outfielder named George Elder died at the age of 101. With Elder’s passing, Schallock became the oldest living former major league player.

The next oldest living big leaguer, born 131 days after Schallock, is Bill Greason, who in 1954 became the first Black pitcher to play for the St. Louis Cardinals.

“They’re both delightful”

Arthur and Dona are going strong, all things considered. They live an independent life at Creekside Village, near Sonoma.

A former club champion at Peacock Gap Golf Club in San Rafael, he gave up that sport a few years ago, because of “balance issues,” Schallock said. “I’m afraid to bend over — tee it up and fall flat on my face.”

He’s nearsighted now, so Dona does the driving. A spring chicken at 97, she’s also a gifted painter, and a regular at weekly meetings of the Creekside Art Group.

“They’re both delightful — very lively and great with the stories,” said Janice Best, a fellow Creekside artist and friend of the couple. “And she adores him. She’s so proud of Artie, and it’s just touching.”

The couple met on a blind date in Marin County, after Schallock returned from his three years of service in the Navy during World War II.

“Art has been lucky all his life, says Dona, a native of Sausalito. But he deserves it. He’s a very nice man.”

Schallock has been on this earth nearly twice as long as his father, who was killed in a car accident at the age of 51. A drunken driver hit him head on. Arthur, 11 or 12 at the time, was sitting in the passenger seat. He went through the windshield.

“They found me in some bushes,” he says. “I woke up three days later, in the hospital.”

 Close calls in the Pacific

Two weeks after his high school graduation, he was drafted by the Navy, and shipped off to the Pacific Theater. “I didn’t see a baseball for three years,” he recalls.

Schallock spent most of those three years as a radio operator on an aircraft carrier called the USS Coral Sea — later renamed the USS Anzio.

On Nov. 24, 1943, the Coral Sea was steaming in the central Pacific alongside its sister ship, the USS Liscome Bay, when that escort carrier was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine. The torpedo hit the Liscome Bay’s starboard side, near the bomb magazine.

“Blew the elevators right out of the ship,” recalled Schallock. “It went down in about 20 minutes.” A total of 644 men were killed on the Liscome Bay that morning.

Schallock’s job was to man a kind of crow’s nest high up on the “the island” — the command center for flight-deck operations.

“When those kamikazes started coming around, I was like a sitting duck up there,” he remembers. “Thank God our gunners nailed ‘em before they got to our ship.”

Life in the minors

Discharged in 1946, he signed the following year with the Brooklyn Dodgers organization. A year later, he made the roster of the Dodgers’ Triple A club in Montreal, where his teammates included future Hall of Famer Duke Snider, future Cy Young Award-winner Don Newcombe, and a rangy first baseman named Chuck Connors, who would go on to star in the television series The Rifleman.

At Schallock’s request, Montreal traded him to the Hollywood Stars, a PCL team affiliated with the Dodgers. The Twinks, as they were known in the press, were promoted as “the Hollywood Stars baseball team, owned by Hollywood stars.”

Celebrity stockholders included Gary Cooper, Barbara Stanwyck, Gene Autry, George Burns and Gracie Allen, Bing Crosby and Cecil B. DeMille.

Schallock recalls that his wife “loved the Hollywood Stars, rubbing elbows with movie stars and stuff,” although it didn’t seem to bother him, either.

During his three seasons with the Twinks, Schallock dominated his old, favorite team, the Seals. “All I had to do was throw my glove out on the mound, and I’d win the ballgame,” he recalls.

Walking from the mound back to the dugout one day, he crossed paths with O’Doul, the Seals skipper, who said, “You little son of a bitch — I should’ve bought you when I had the chance.”

Schallock pitched a game against the Seattle Rainiers in 1951. Unbeknownst to him, Yankees scout Joe Devine was in the stands. Halfway through the game, Stars manager Fred Haney called Dona down from the stands. He had news.

“I just sold Arthur to the New York Yankees.”

“Who the hell are the New York Yankees?” she replied.

The pinnacle

They were a team in transition. True, the Yankees had won three of the past four World Series. But stars like Tommy Henrich and DiMaggio had departed, or would soon retire. Filling that void were Mantle, pitchers Whitey Ford and Allie Reynolds, and the koan-spouting catcher, Yogi Berra, still relatively young in ’51. Powered by that nucleus, managed by crusty Casey Stengel, the Yankees would win the next three World Series, as well.

The newest Yankee roomed with Berra on the road that season. “He knew all the hitters on each team, so he went over them with me,” said Schallock, who performed a service for Berra in return. He would buy comic books for the catcher.

The players who weren’t stars, Dona recalled, stayed at the Berkshire Hotel, near Yankee Stadium.

“I was the only one who knew how to cook,” recalled Dona. “So I would charge them for whatever the cost of the groceries were. That’s all I would charge.”

Mantle’s wife, Merlyn, was “so nice. She was adorable,” Dona said.

Those were the days when they had a wives’ box” at the stadium. “So we all knew each other.”

Schallock spent his five seasons with the Yankees on the bubble of the roster, shuttling between the big club and Triple-A. In his six starts in 1951, he won three and lost one, with two no-decisions. His earned-run average was 3.88. Schallock did not see action in that World Series, or the 1952 Fall Classic.

Working mainly as a reliever in ’53, Schallock’s ERA was 2.95. He pitched the final two innings in Game four of the World Series, giving up two hits and a run in a 7-3 loss to Brooklyn.

The Yankees won the next two games, clinching the series and earning Schallock his third World Series ring.

Early in the 1955 season he was traded to the Baltimore Orioles, winning six games and losing 8. Plagued with an injured throwing shoulder, he retired from baseball the following year.

After baseball

Schallock spent the next three decades working with title companies, in public relations and business development.

People still send memorabilia to him in the mail, asking for his autograph. Sometimes they include some cash, to compensate him.

“I sign the thing, put the money back in the envelope and send it right back to ‘em. What the hell. I don’t need it.”

He remembers that the highest paid person on those dynastic Yankee clubs was the general manager, George Weiss. “He was getting more than Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle.”

In Schallock’s day, the players’ minimum salary was $5,000. It’s now $700,000.

“I cry a lot about that,” he says. But he’s smiling as he says it.

He has always floated on the surface of things, never letting anything get him too down.

“I try to treat everybody fairly,” said Schallock, who then revealed a glimpse of the philosophy that has kept him around for so long:

“I never get mad or upset over anything. It’s not worth it.”

How about on the mound. “Nahhh,” replied. “If somebody hit a home run” — like the tape measure shot Mantle hit off Schallock when the pitcher was an Oriole — “well, so what? Move on.”

Speaking of moving on, after his next birthday, he’ll be staring at 100.

“Tell me about it,” he says. “I walk from here to the mailbox, I’m all tuckered out.”

Would he like to hit the century mark?

“I think that'd be great,” he says.

Don’t bet against Schallock. His luck’s held out this far. 

(Santa Rosa Press Democrat)

* * *

“Bad food is made without pride, by cooks who have no pride, and no love. Bad food is made by chefs who are indifferent, or who are trying to be everything to everybody, who are trying to please everyone… Bad food is fake food… food that shows fear and lack of confidence in people's ability to discern or to make decisions about their lives.” 

— Anthony Bourdain

* * *


Reminds me of my first job at an upscale steak house WAY back in the day. They put their butter pats out in little dishes with the meal. When the bus boys brought all the dishes back, we were tasked with emptying the butter dishes and the cheese sauce dishes – both often with cigarette butts in them – into containers for reuse. They would both be reheated and filtered through cheesecloth before reuse, and the butter was only used to cook with on the grill, but even so it was a rather unsavory practice. The steak house is long gone now, but I would only hope others aren’t doing stuff like this as well. On the other hand, the restaurant industry in general is rather quirky in that regard.

* * *

* * *

LEO GLUCKSMAN was an ex-GI, but he had served after the war and was now only into his mid-twenties, rosy-cheeked and a little round and looking no older than his first- and second-year college students. Though Leo was still completing his dissertation for a literature Ph.D. at the university, he appeared before us at every session of the class in a three-piece black suit and a crimson bow tie, more formally attired by far than any of the older faculty members. When the weather turned cold he could be seen crossing the quadrangle draped in a black cape that, even on a campus as untypically tolerant of idiosyncrasy and eccentricity—and as understanding of originality and its oddity—as the University of Chicago's was in those days, titillated students whose bright (and amused) “Hi, Professor,” Leo would acknowledge by sharply whacking the pavement with the metal tip of the cane he sported.

After taking a hasty look late one afternoon at a draft of my play, ‘The Stooge of Torquemada’—which, to kindle Mr. Glucksman’s admiration, I’d thought to bring to him, along with the assigned essay on Aristotle's Poetics—Leo startled me by loudly dropping it with disgust onto his desk.

His speech was rapid, his tone fierce and unforgiving—no sign in that delivery of the foppishly overdressed boy genius plumply perched back of his bow tie on his cushioned seat. His plumpness and his personality exemplified two very different people. The clothes registered a third person. And his polemic a fourth—not a mannerist but a real adult critic exposing to me the dangers of the tutelage I'd been under with Ira, teaching me to assume a position less rigid in confronting literature. Precisely what I was ready for in my new recruitment phase. Under Leo’s guidance I began to be transformed into the descendant not just of my family but of the past, heir to a culture even grander than my neighborhood’s.

“Art as a weapon?” he said to me, the word “weapon” rich with contempt and itself a weapon. “Art as taking the right stand on everything? Art as the advocate of good things? Who taught you all this? Who taught you art is slogans? Who taught you art is in the service of ‘the people’? Art is in the service of art—otherwise there is no art worthy of anyone’s attention. What is the motive for writing serious literature? To disarm the enemies of price control? The motive for writing serious literature is to write serious literature. You want to rebel against society? I’ll tell you how to do it—write well. You want to embrace a lost cause? Then don’t fight in behalf of the laboring class. They’re going to make out fine. They’re going to fill up on Plymouths to their heart’s content. The workingman will conquer us all—out of his mindlessness will flow the slop that is this philistine country’s cultural destiny. We'll soon have something in this country far worse than the government of the peasants and the workers—we will have the culture of the peasants and the workers. You want a lost cause to fight for? Then fight for the word. Not the high-flown word, not the inspiring word, not the pro-this and anti-that word, not the word that advertises to the respectable that you are a wonderful, admirable, compassionate person on the side of the downtrodden and the oppressed. No, for the word that tells the literate few condemned to live in America that you are on the side of the word! This play of yours is… It’s awful. It’s infuriating. It is crude, primitive, simple-minded, propagandistic crap. It blurs the world with words. And it reeks to high heaven of your virtue. Nothing has a more sinister effect on art than an artist’s desire to prove that he’s good. The terrible temptation of idealism! You must achieve mastery over your idealism, over your virtue as well as over your vice, aesthetic mastery over everything that drives you to write in the first place— your outrage, your politics, your grief, your love! Start preaching and taking positions, start seeing your own perspective as superior, and you’re worthless as an artist, worthless and ludicrous. Why do you write these proclamations! Because you look around and you’re ‘shocked’? Because you look around and you’re ‘moved’? People give up too easily and fake their feelings. They want to have feelings right away, and so ‘shocked’ and ‘moved’ are the easiest. The stupidest. Except for the rare case, shock is always fake. Proclamations? Art has no use for proclamations! Get your lovable shit out of this office, please.” 

— Philip Roth, ‘I Married a Communist’

* * *

* * *


Former Russian President and Deputy Chair of the Security Council of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev said Russia will "disappear" if it loses the war in Ukraine.

“If Russia stops the special military operation without achieving victory, Russia will disappear, it will be torn to pieces,” Medvedev said in a Telegram post on Wednesday, using the euphemism for Russia's invasion of Ukraine. “If the US stops supplying weapons to the Kyiv regime, the war will end.” 

Medvedev’s comments follow US President Joe Biden’s speech in Poland on Tuesday. 

During his speech, Biden said, "If Russia stopped invading Ukraine, it would end the war. If Ukraine stopped defending itself against Russia, it would be the end of Ukraine," which Medvedev claimed was “a refined lie.” 

“Why does he appeal to the people of another country at a time when he is full of domestic problems? With what fright should we listen to a politician from a hostile state that exudes hatred for our Motherland? Why should the citizens of Russia believe the leader of the United States, who unleashed the most wars in the 20th and 21st centuries, but reproach us for aggressiveness?” Medvedev said — repeating claims that American officials see as a whataboutism tactic — adding Biden’s aim is “to ensure that Russia suffers a "strategic defeat."

Medvedev also commented on Putin's state of the nation address on Tuesday, in particular an announcement that Russia is suspending its participation in the New START nuclear arms reduction treaty. 

He called it “an overdue and inevitable decision.” 

“This is a decision that will have a huge resonance in the world in general and in the United States in particular,” Medvedev added. 

“After all, it is obvious to all reasonable forces that if the United States wants Russian defeat, then we are on the verge of a world conflict,” he continued. “If the United States wants to defeat Russia, then we have the right to defend ourselves with any weapon, including nuclear.” 


* * *

Gary Snyder, Glacier Peak wilderness, Washington State, snapped by Allen Ginsberg during their late summer hike, 1965


  1. George Hollister February 23, 2023


    What the regulated, and the regulators got wrong was what legalization would do to the pot market. They both thought prices would stay high, pot smokers would keep buying, the gravy train would continue and grow, any regulation or taxation would be affordable, and the tax money would just roll in. Nirvana. Of course none of that happened as the new partially legal market changed, and reality set in.

    • Lazarus February 23, 2023

      Who were the people who actually wrote the cannabis ordinance for Mendocino County? One would have thought the Flow Kana, etc’s of the county would have or could have had a tremendous influence on how it went. They did their best to buy every big shot in the county…in the beginning.
      And then there’s, why not buy into Humboldt’s or any other County that is having some success?
      Either the Brass wanted it this way or they are too stupid or egotistical to admit it’s failed.
      Marijuana replaced logging when it was run out, but now, what will replace marijuana?
      Ask around…

      • Marmon February 23, 2023

        John McCowen, he hated those legacy growers. He wanted those grows out of the hills and in ag land only where they could be easily regulated.


        • Marmon February 23, 2023

          Allman also spoke out against the Phase One growers-he felt that with less grows there would be less home invasions. The BOS was never able to see the legacy growers as anything but criminals. They wanted to move on to Phase Two growers who would go through Flow Kana for processing and hire armed guards to protect the mega grows.

          What backfired on them was that black market growers aren’t prosecuted anymore. The black market ended their dreams.


          • peter boudoures February 23, 2023

            800×5000 are the farmers in queue and amount paid for the yearly county tax. The amount of info in each packet can be reviewed by one employ in roughly one day. These farms have gone through seqa and all other requested agencies. There isn’t anything holding the county back from moving forward except for themselves. Be careful who and what you vote for, regardless of if you care about the cannabis program or not this is a window into how your tax dollars are spent.

            • Lazarus February 23, 2023

              “a window into how your tax dollars are spent”. p.b.

              One needs to look no further than the $250,000 that they spent on a two-day bridge rental for Creekside RV Park. I wonder who and how much was skimmed off of that deal?

              • Marmon February 23, 2023

                I would like to know who brokered that deal. Before the mental breakdown that led to me becoming a social worker, I’d been working in highway construction for over 20 years, worked on the Willits Grade job for Gilotti Brothers Construction in the late 80’s and early 90’s . I started out by helping my dad put in culverts out in the woods on logging roads in the 70’s. If someone wasn’t skimming, they certainly should not have been in charge of the deal. The did not know what they were doing.


                • Marmon February 23, 2023

                  Howard Dashiell most likely, if not why not?


              • Jim Armstrong February 23, 2023

                I posted at the time that I would like to see the invoice for that deal.
                All I have seen since is that the county got it from the City of Ukiah, where it was lying around the city yard.
                I still would like to know the real deal. Too bad there aren’t public entities involved.

      • George Hollister February 23, 2023

        From what I am reading here in the AVA about Humboldt County, the pot economy there looks pretty dead. Garberville is front and center as a pot town gone completely bust.

        The timber industry is not as dead as we like to think. Good paying jobs are going begging. If by some chance we can get the USFS back to managing its forest, a legal economy could grow.

        • Lazarus February 23, 2023

          From your lips to God’s ears George. We need something…
          Thank you, and be well,

          • George Hollister February 23, 2023

            How about a Douglas fir mill in Willits?

            • Lazarus February 23, 2023

              The Burton family currently has a Redwood Mill.
              Bring it on, your Doug Fir mill.
              And presently, the City is weighing options for a Log Yard north of town. Who knows what that could ultimately mean?
              But I hear on the street that getting able bodies to show up to work can be difficult. All that free money, I suspect.

      • George Hollister February 23, 2023

        From what I have read here in the AVA, Flow Kana’s work model was based on Mendocino County’s outdoor pot market having a market niche, with small growers producing a high quality, and high value product for them to market. It did not turn out that way. That is according to Flow Kana. There are those who will pay more for a Mendocino label, but most pot smokers just want to get high.

        • Lazarus February 23, 2023

          Flow Kana was all smoke and mirrors. Then they ripped off the growers, and the Kana workers, ask around.

      • Bruce McEwen February 23, 2023

        To answer your first question Katherine Elliott, former Ukiah defense lawyer, wrote the pot ordnances for CEO Angelo back when Ms. Elliott was County Counsel. She tooted her own horn so loudly on her pride in the accomplishment that one of those impoverished counties in the foothills of the Sierras hired her, the poor fools. She once defended a pot pharmer on murder charges “2-Gun Terry” and may have won if her client hadn’t committed suicide during trial. When I asked for a quote she gave me this meaningless line, “It is what it is.” And a vapid smile to go with it.

    • Harvey Reading February 23, 2023

      Mendo’s influence on the pot market was always a pipe dream. Even back in the 70s, most pot came from outside, or elsewhere in, the US. Now, the crap is grown everywhere in the country, and the emerald triangle idiots are exposed as the dreamers they always were. Good riddance! Y’all need to come up with a new name for the region. How about Clearcut Central?

      • Bruce McEwen February 23, 2023

        You know about as much about the pot business as Hollister does, Reading. Neither of you two blowhards could tell sour diesel from Kansas killer. Yet you both pontificate tediously on, on and on, droaning like a couple of flies in a deserted room, smug as Oxford dons…

        • Harvey Reading February 23, 2023

          As much as you do. And, I’ve never smoked any emerald triangle weed, ever. Had some pretty potent stuff from Canada, and from south of our border, though. The emerald triangle was just another joke in Sonoma. Kinda like the back-to-the-landers up north in Mendolandia. I guess you’re one of those high-plainers who bought into the emerald mythology. For the rest of us, it was just more hippie BS.

        • George Hollister February 23, 2023

          I can’t disagree with any of that. I do know there is a fungus around Point Arena that if it gets into a diesel fuel tank it will sour it.

  2. Michael Geniella February 23, 2023

    Thanks to Jim Shields for sharing his thought-provoking piece. What has happened in Mendocino County regarding cannabis regulation is a disgrace. County officials and the local industry had a chance to show how it could be done. Instead, there is nothing. Pathetic.

  3. Marmon February 23, 2023


    BREAKING: Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announces that the United States will send an additional $10 billion in economic assistance for Ukraine. Estimates of total US economic and military aid to Ukraine now range from $115 billion to $200 billion in the last 12 months.


    • George Dorner February 23, 2023

      Estimates? Isn’t anyone keeping track?

  4. Marco McClean February 23, 2023

    Bruce, I notice that when you tell a dream in the AVA, you always preface it with an automatic apology for how boring you think everyone finds hearing or reading even a sentence or two of a dream. Others do this too. I think that’s because your feelings are naturally hurt by people who don’t remember their dreams well and so always bitch in the comments that dreams bore them and you should stop it because it annoys them. Look at who they are when they say that. They’re angry, boring people in real life, with angry, boring opinions about local and world events that they have no say in, no real grasp of, no control over, and that might as well be their telling of their stupid, repetitive, angry, boring dream of the world, over and over, Kunstler, for example, and that is /all/ they write, not just a small part of a much larger, much more wonderful project, because they don’t have one, and that’s probably why they’re so angry and lonely.

    Millions of people keep a sleep-dream journal, and mostly they’re shy about it, and they don’t need to be. I like reading dreams on the radio. I have a dream journal section in my all-Friday-night shows on KNYO that’s between five minutes and half an hour of each show. I’m happy to read your sleep dreams and anyone else’s on the air. Writing your dreams is good practice in describing something that comes from you, whether it prompts you to relate it to anything in the real word or your real life or not. I’ll read anything on the air, and like it, and think about it; just email it to me. Nobody needs to say sorry for dreaming. I can make a case that dreams are the kernel of most teevee shows and films and plays and novels and poetry and art in general, without which where would we be, and who would we be? Think of what a gray, horrible world we’d have to live in without all of that. I’m not a big fan of religion, organized or not, but the Bible is full of dreams. It’s one dream after another. All the big-ticket holy books are, all the fantasy and science-fiction, all the wonderful, terrible, complicated stories, not to mention a great deal of what passes for history.

    Marco McClean,,

    • Rick Swanson February 23, 2023

      I’ve been dreaming more and more lately. Amazing technicolor dreams. The latest was of my aunt Maryanne,on her death bed, just before she went to heaven. It was beautiful.

  5. John Sakowicz February 23, 2023

    To the Editor:

    Flow Kana was always bad news.

    Flow Kana was always about scallywags and carpetbaggers. It was always about outsiders. It was always about making outsiders rich. It was always about extracting money out of the Mendocino County economy. It was always about making sharecroppers out of local cannabis farmers in a de facto tenant farm system.

    Exhibit # 1: Jason Adler

    Jason Adler, a hedge fund guy with about $145 million into Flow Kana, was from New York. Hedge fund guys, like Adler, shorted subprime garbage in the casinos of Wall Street and helped trigger the global financial crisis of 2007-2008. Everyone lost money. Almost everyone. Adler made lots of money.

    Exhibit # 2: Michael Steinmetz

    Michael “Lil’ Mickey”” Steinmetz was a nice Jewish boy from Caracas, Venezuela. He ran a supply chain business of fresh cut flowers out of Columbia into the U.S. and Europe. Was he laundering drug lord money? Who knows? Always the serial entrepreneur, Steinmetz also got into the stevia business. Stevia is native to Brazil and Paraguay. Another murky business?

    Exhibit # 3 Daniel Stein

    Daniel Stein, a farmer who described himself as a proud “New York Jew,” was another one of Flow Kana’s partners.

    Adler, Steinmetz, and Stein kept kosher food caterers busy while they were here in Mendocino County.

    Adler, Steinmetz, and Stein also kept their accountants with sharp pencils and green visors very busy. It was all about the money, honey.

    It was a closed club.

    Add to that predatory business model the fact that Jason Adler owns an interest in two biotech companies — Pebble Labs and Trait Biosciences — which are developing GMO cannabis strains with CRISPR-Cas technology (targeted gene editing) …and well…you get the idea. Flow Kana probably would have been forcing its beholden farmers to grow Flow Kana’s own GMO seed.

    I saw this nightmare coming.

    See my February 2020 article, “Flow Kana’s Deal with the Devil”:

    In 2020, I also spoke to CBS 60 Minutes, Rolling Stone Magazine, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal on background about Jason Adler, Michael Steinmetz, and Flow Kana.

    When I heard that Flow Kana was considering an IPO or the sale of itself to a publicly traded company, I spoke with the SEC.

    Now, I have a different set of questions: Did Carmel Angelo ever take money from Flow Kana? Did any member of the Board of Supervisors? Did County Counsel? Did any member of County Planning and Building Services?

    How did Flow Kana get every damn thing it wanted from the county and how did they get it all fast-tracked?

    John Sakowicz

    • Marmon February 23, 2023

      What kind of Jews are these guys John? Seven-in-ten Jewish adults in America identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party, and half describe their political views as liberal.


    • George Hollister February 23, 2023

      OK, Flow Kana the evil, greedy, bad news carpetbagger is now broke like most others trying to sell the Emerald Triangle label. Did they sink their own ship, or what? From the article I read, right here in the AVA, they made a big bet, like many others did, including the county, and that bet went South. End of story. That sort of thing happens most of the time in the world of venture capital.

      • Lazarus February 23, 2023

        You shouldn’t enter into a subject you have such limited knowledge about.
        Obviously, you feel the entire cannabis/marijuana/Emerald Triangle thing is bunk and a loser.
        Your Doug Fir mill will not go anywhere near the economy lost by your friends who run the County. They trashed a billion-dollar business in just a few years with snobbery and stupidity.
        And for your information, Garberville was a trimmers town. My sources say cannabis is alive and well in Humboldt County. The growers cut the trimmers out, who overcharged for decades. Now many legal grows have regular full-time employees, not transients looking for a quick buck.
        Be well,

        • George Hollister February 24, 2023

          I agree that I know less than I know about the subject. But how much that I have read right here in the AVA on the subject is wrong? A quote from a Mendo grower in The Washington Post was, “There is no legal market, and black market, there is one market”. It has been my impression that this has always been the case, and the black market sets the price. Traditionally the black market held up the legal market and made it profitable. Now the. price set by black market is bringing the legal market down. BTW, another interesting fact from our Sheriff is the population of Covelo has declined by 40% in the last year.

  6. Todd Lukes February 23, 2023

    Serious thanks to thanks to the one guy with a chainsaw that helped make it possible for us all to get down off that snowy hill outside Yorkville.

    Kyle out of Comptche, with the white Dodge Pickup, I’ll buy you a new bar for that chainsaw any day you’re in town.

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