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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Dec 23, 2015

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WET & COLD weather continues after soaking Northern California over the weekend. Light showers Wednesday & Thursday. Clearing up in time for Christmas on Friday with not much rain for the following few cold days. Lots of snow in the Sierras with up to three feet in some areas. Temperatures were supposed to stay chilly for the week, with highs in the 50s, and overnight lows in the 30s by Christmas morning and onward.

Trinity County, photo by Lynn Fritz
Trinity County, photo by Lynn Fritz


Northwest California Potential Winter Storm Wednesday Evening Through Thursday


  • Snow covered roads with chain requirements at elevations over 2000 feet.
  • Small landslides and rock slides likely.
  • Small hail in showers along the coast on Thursday.

Forecast Confidence

  • Moderate confidence in snow levels and amounts.
  • High confidence in the development of small hail in showers.

Timing and Strength

Wednesday evening through Thursday.

Trinity, Humboldt, and Del Norte Counties: Snow - 2 to 6 inches above 2000 feet. 5 to 10 inches above 3000 feet.

Mendocino County: Snow - 2 to 6 inches above 3000 feet.

Weather Summary

A cold storm system will bring widespread rain to coastal areas and snow to the interior beginning in Del Norte County Wednesday evening and then spreading south overnight into Thursday. The heaviest precipitation will fall during the overnight period through Thursday morning. Heavy snow is expected and a Winter Storm Watch has been issued with snow levels falling to 2000-3000 feet Wednesday night, lowest in Del Norte, Trinity, and Humboldt counties. There is the potential for this snow to have major impacts on travel with at least high mountain passes receiving several inches of snow and over a foot at elevations over 4000 feet. Rain will fall at the coast with 0.5 to 1 inch expected. Small hail will also be possible in the stronger showers along the coast Thursday into Thursday evening.

— National Weather Service, Eureka

Route 299 Boulder, photo by Caltrans
Route 299 Boulder, photo by Caltrans



We had 3.02" for 24-hours ending 8:00 am Monday in Elk in our 4-inch gauge, measure meticulously. A1n Albion station reported 3.77" & a Westport station 3.27"

Just finished posting this:

Here are the 24-hour rainfall totals for Mendocino County as reported to the volunteer Community Collaborative Rain, Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRAHS).

Ukiah led the way recording a whopping 4.57" with Laytonville not too far behind logging the second most 4.48."

On the coast, Albion collected the most rainfall at 3.77" with Wesport getting 3.27" & MSP's station (Elk) getting 3,02".

Here are some other CoCoRAHS totals:


  • Crescent City - 2.03", 1.48", 1.39" & 0.92" reports
  • Smith River - 1.90"
  • Fort Dick - 1.08"


  • Petrolia - 3.78"
  • Bridgeville - 3.51"
  • Redway - 2.70", 2.28" & 2.05" reports
  • Willow Creek - 2.46" & 2.09"
  • Kneeland - 2.50" & 1.20"
  • Garberville - 2.36"
  • McKinleyville - 1.75" & 1.15" reports
  • Bayview - 1.51"
  • Fortuna - 1.43"
  • Eureka - 1.36" & 1.08" reports
  • Trinidad - 1.34" & 1.16" & 0.76" reports
  • Arcata - 1.19", 0.68" & 0.66" reports


  • Cazadero - 5.63" 5.40" & 4.41" reports
  • Sebastopol - 3.22", 2.68" & 2.44" & 1.65" reports
  • Guerneville - 2.07"
  • Cloverdale - 1.92" & "1.71" reports
  • Healdsburg - 1.82"
  • Petaluma - 1.19"
  • Santa Rosa - 1.12", 0.94" & 0.92" reports


  • Upper Lake - 3.19"
  • Lakeport - 2.35" & 2.33" reports
  • Lower Lake - 0.52"

And here's a link we just posted on MSP to the Coyote Dam at Lake Mendo:

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Thanks to all of you who have participated in the conference briefings and/or are providing us with updates through emails.

The following is what has been reported to OES at this time:

Department of Water Resources reported the Navarro Rive will hit 23 ft at 12 p.m. today which is flood stage but will immediately start receding at 12 p.m. The Navarro River should recede to 13.6 ft by early Wednesday morning. The Russian River at Hopland is currently receding and has dropped to 16.7 ft.

National Weather Service reported that most of the rain including heavy rain has come to an end. They have issued a flood advisory for the coast due to high tides. Wednesday night the snow level may drop to 2,000 ft. They will be sending out a new weather forecast sometime today. OES will send this new report out to you as soon as we receive it.

Lieutenant Stefani from Coast Sheriff's Office reported that Highway 1 was closed south of the Garcia River, near Stornetta Flat/Dairy. CalTrans did not know how long the road would be closed.

CalTrans reported Highway 175 was closed at Hopland.

Highway 128 was closed.


And the slide on Highway 20 near the Lake/Mendocino line was stable and the one lane would be opening. They still have crews working and watching road conditions and will open road ASAP.

County Department of Transportation reported they have had crews working throughout the night. There were some slides and flooding around the County causing some road closer but most were being reopened.

AT&T reported no issues.

City of Willits reported the water had been receding and the City was working on cleanup. The sandbags and sand were being utilized by the City residents.

The City of Fort Bragg reported there was a tree that took out some power lines near the intersection of E Redwood Ave and N Harrison Street. PG&E has been on the scene since approximately 0230 hours.

Chief Bartlett reported for the City of Ukiah, Ukiah Valley Fire Authority and Hopland Fire reported there were no issues in the Ukiah Area and that Highway 175 was closed.

Cal Fire reported they were busy but no issues to report

Cal OES reported they were on standby/monitoring

Red Cross reported they had no calls

Mendocino County Sheriff reported there would be very high tides coming in this morning.

Greg Glavich with Communications reported no issues with communications.

Jen Banks with EMS reported there were no issues

Wayne Briley with Hazmat reported there were no issues

PG&E reported as of 07:15 outage were; Calpella-61, Point Arena-19, Fort Bragg-70, Boonville 1, and Big River-1. Crews are working on restoring the power.

Here are some rainfall totals for Mendocino County


As always, any new information that comes in we will send it out.

Be safe

Tami Bartolomei, Office of Emergency Services Coordinator

Just wanted to give you a quick update from Cal Trans:

Highway 1 has 2 feet of water at Stornetta's and 3 feet of water at Miners Hole so the road is still closed. Cal Trans will be monitoring until they can re-open the road.

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PROPOSITION 172 UPDATE: KZYX reporter Valerie Lim has spoken to several of the Prop 172 players in the last couple of days trying to clarify the dispute that has arisen around the Mendocino County Fire District’s Association’s (MCFDA’s) pending initiative to require the Board of Supervisors to allocate at least 30% of the Prop 172 money — 30% of about $7 million annually — to fire protection in Mendocino County. Last week, after seeing the language of the initiative, County Counsel Kit Elliott filed for an injunction to stop the initiative from being considered on grounds that it illegally infringed on the Board of Supervisors authority to allocate funds as they deem necessary. According to MCFDA member David Roderick of the Hopland Fire District Ms. Elliott told their association that she was simply trying to save everyone a lot of trouble by preventing the filing and processing of an initiative which she believed would be ruled illegal if passed. Mr. Roderick didn't agree and took offense at Ms. Elliott's filing, then he turned around and filed his own federal lawsuit claiming his right to free speech was being infringed by the County or the Board of Supervisors.

TODAY (Tuesday) Judge Jeanine Nadel issued her ruling that County Counsel Elliott did not need to process the initiative because it did appear to be wrongly telling the Board how to allocate funds. MCFDA says they are not directing the Board to do anything, just "requesting it." But Ms. Elliott says that other language in the initiative requires that at least 30% be allocated to fire districts. Apparently Judge Nadel didn't like the proposed initiative’s requirement that a budget line item be established for fire districts because fire protection is not under the jurisdiction of the county.

FOR THE PRESENT the initiative will have to undergo some revisions before Judge Nadel will allow it to be processed. Ms. Elliott also points out that whatever is allocated to fire districts has to be taken from existing allocations to the sheriff department, the District Attorney's Office, probation and the jail which she thinks is too much of a zero-sum game. In her ruling however, Judge Nadel did agree that as she reads the Prop 172 language, fire districts should get some of the money.

PREDICTABLY, Fourth District Supervisor Dan Gjerde brought some rationality to the issue by pointing out that he and Supervisor Dan Hamburg are already trying to work on a way to provide some of the Proposition 172 money to the fire districts. However Gjerde thinks that 30% is too high and any allocation should be based more on a reasonable estimate of how much the fire districts need, not a seemingly arbitrary percentage.

THAT LEAVES SEVERAL THINGS HANGING since MCFDA has been asked to revise their initiative, Mr. Roderick has filed a civil rights violation lawsuit and the Gjerde-Hamburg ad hoc committee is moving forward without any specific timeline. Don't expect any resolution anytime soon.

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Dear AVA,

Thanks for the KC Meadows review of Tim Stoen’s book Marked for Death.

Tim Stoen needs to be forgiven, as we all do. We all do things that we should not do, and that is the point. But forgiving is not forgetting. Only fools chose to forget because, people’s tendencies seldom change, and there is always something hopefully learned. “There for the grace of God go I”? Speaking for myself, not me. I certainly am capable of doing things I should not do, but Stoen’s sin is not mine.

Stoen’s sin is the sin of those who embrace the enslavement of those who are not taking responsibility for themselves, in order to save them. The only difference between Stoen and the broader “save the poor” crowd is Stoen had his face rubbed in the results. His son, his marriage, his life. He immersed himself in a version of the liberal let’s end poverty fantasy, and paid the price. I can not imagine the tortured conflicts that Stoen will take to his grave. But let’s look at the results of enslaving the poor, that none of the rest of us have to account for.

We pay financially dependent drug addicts and drunks to raise children. We pay the “homeless” to live in the streets. We pay for lifestyles that support gun violence in our inner cities, and other self destructive behaviors. This is the short list of the perversion, that the “save the poor crowd” promotes. And the pay is what keeps the poor on the plantation, and almost guarantees children of the poor will fail.

But, unlike Tim Stoen, we are all separated from it. So the perversion goes unseen, unfelt, and unaddressed. That is until it hits our own family, makes the front page of our newspapers in a mass killing, shows up in statistics of failed schools, or when we pay the cost for incarcerating the criminal products of the a “save the poor” plantation.

For slaves there is always a slave master. In America, the slave master is the state. It did not used to be that way, and the poor did much better. The state is currently a benign slave master, that demands nothing more than a vote in exchange for a check. But Jim Jones was a demonstration of what slave masters can do. And a shell shocked Tim Stoen, is willing to share with us a part what he knows about it. The balance I imagine he has trouble sharing with himself. The rest of the “save the poor” crowd are left with the on going question of why is this not working, and why are matters getting worse?

George A. Hollister


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STATE WATER BOARD ISSUES 1881 COMPLAINTS; violations carry potential fines of $500/day

From the State Water Resources Control Board:

Approximately 80 percent of more than 10,000 property owners and water suppliers in four Russian River tributary watersheds have complied with a State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) Informational Order issued this past fall to protect Central Coast coho salmon and steelhead.

The State Water Board issued 1,881 Administrative Civil Liability (ACL) complaints in the past week to the remaining 20 percent of property owners and water suppliers in the four tributary watersheds who failed to comply with the Order.

The complaints were issued to property owners in the Dutch Bill, Green Valley, Mark West and Mill Creek watersheds, who were required to submit information on their sources and uses of water. The information was due in late August and September, and a reminder letter was sent in late October.

The ACL complaints carry a potential fine of up to $500 per day of violation, which could total up to $24,000 to $31,000, depending on the watershed. But if the property owners and water suppliers submit the required information within 20 days of receiving the ACL complaint, no fine will be issued. Property owners also have the option of requesting a hearing before the State Water Board within 20 days of receiving the complaint, which could result in a reduced or increased fine.

“The point of these ACL complaints is not to levy fines or generate revenue,” said Barbara Evoy, Deputy Director of the State Water Board’s Division of Water Rights. “There is a true need for this water use information in order to protect these important fish species.”

Individuals who receive an ACL Complaint should read each document carefully and respond within 20 days of receipt of the ACL Complaint.


On June 17, 2015, the State Water Board adopted an emergency regulation to protect federal- and state-listed anadromous fish in the four Russian River tributary watersheds.  The emergency regulation requires: (1) enhanced water conservation in critical areas of the four watersheds; and (2) information on water use if requested by the State Water Board.

The enhanced conservation is intended to maintain the small amount of water necessary to support the minimum temperature and oxygen conditions needed for summer rearing and migration of coho salmon and steelhead in the four watersheds. The information on water use, which was requested by the State Water Board, will be used to inform future actions that may be needed if the enhanced conservation measures are not sufficient.

The State Water Board has been working with the community, along with State and federal agencies this summer and fall to monitor conditions in the four creeks.

For more information on the Russian River Tributary Informational Order, visit here.

For more information on the Russian River Tributaries Emergency Regulation, visit here.

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THE PUBLIC HEALTH BRANCH of the Mendocino County Health and Humans Services Agency offers no-cost flu immunizations for children who are eligible for the Vaccines for Children Program. Flu immunizations are also offered to adults at Public Health with a suggested donation of fifteen dollars; no one will be turned away if they are unable to afford the donation. For immunization clinic information, please call Public Health at (707) 472-2600.

Thank you,

Cindy Roper, Public Health
Administrative Secretary
Health & Human Services Agency

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Jackson Demonstration State Forest (JDSF) timber sale areas generally remain closed for a period of time after timber operations are complete until it is determined safe for public re-entry. Effective Monday December 28, 2015, JDSF areas closed in 2015 due to active timber sale operations are now open to the public for hiking, biking and equestrian access. Vehicles are prohibited from using closed roads. Unlicensed motorcycles and ATVs are always prohibited on State Forest Roads and all cross country travel is prohibited.

Each year, seasonal closures occur, please refer to our website or contact our office for current information. Website: The CAL FIRE JDSF office is located at 802 North Main Street, Fort Bragg, CA. (707) 964-5674. Office hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (closed from 12-1:00 p.m.).

Mike Powers,
Forester II
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Mendocino Unit
(707) 964-5674

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CATCH OF THE DAY, December 22, 2015

Alllen, Brockway, Douglas, Flinton
Alllen, Brockway, Douglas, Flinton


ROBERT BROCKWAY III, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear.

ROBERT DOUGLAS, Ukiah. Forgery/False checks, burglary, receiving stolen property, probation revocation

SEAN FLINTON, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

Larvie, Pabo, Reeves, Verville
Larvie, Pabo, Reeves, Verville

GERARD LARVIE, Fort Bragg. Court order violation, failure to appear, probation revocation.

DAYNES PABO, Ukiah. Fighting, vandalism.

CECELIA REEVES, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

ROBERT VERVILLE, Willits. Probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

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by Bob Egelko

Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow took the stand in his racketeering trial Monday, testifying about a life of crime that he hoped to escape after his release from prison in 2003 — before the government broke its promise to give him a new home and a new identity.

The first defense witness after five weeks of prosecution testimony, Chow — speaking publicly for the first time since his arrest in March 2014 — told jurors he had promised himself more than a decade ago, after days of waterfront meditation, to renounce lawbreaking. He also loudly and indignantly denied charges that he had plotted the murders of two rivals for leadership of Chinatown organizations, as prosecutors allege.

Chow had served 10 years of a 28-year sentence on previous racketeering and gun convictions when he was freed in 2003 after testifying against his former boss, Peter Chong, on charges of running a criminal operation in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Angered by what he regarded as Chong’s betrayal — “He stole my lawyer,” Chow testified — he agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors, knowing retaliation was likely when he returned to the streets.

“They promised me the witness protection program,” with a new name and a new location, Chow, 55, told the federal court jury in San Francisco. Instead, he said, FBI agents returned him to San Francisco with a $2,000 monthly allowance and an ankle monitor.

Unable to find a job and afraid to leave home for more than an hour or two each day, Chow said, he suffered a nervous breakdown a year later. He said the FBI sent him to a psychiatrist, who supplied him with a limited amount of sleeping pills. The FBI invited him to a meeting in 2005 where officers pointed guns at his head and arrested him, though he was not charged, he said.

Nonetheless, Chow said, he started doing volunteer community work, counseling troubled youths about “the frame of the criminal mind” and meditating regularly on Ocean Beach to “try to open up my heart, try not to think about fear.”

After three days of meditation, he said, “I change myself. I tell myself I’m not going to cross the line and commit the crime.”

Prosecutors have presented a dramatically different version of Chow’s actions. They say he gained control of the Ghee Kung Tong, a venerable Chinatown community organization, by arranging the murder of its leader, Allen Leung, in February 2006. Chow then ran the organization as a criminal enterprise that trafficked in guns, drugs and stolen goods and laundered millions of dollars for undercover agents posing as mobsters, prosecutors said.

They have also accused him of trying to set up the murder of another rival, Jim Tat Kong, who was shot to death by unknown assailants in Mendocino County in 2013.

Questioned Monday by his defense attorney, J. Tony Serra, Chow said Chinatown had been awash with rumors that he had ordered the killing of Leung, who was shot by a masked intruder at his import-export business office.

“I did not kill Allen Leung. I did not order killing Allen Leung,” he said, his previously quiet voice rising to a shout. Regarding Kong’s death, which an associate said Chow had ordered, the defendant declared, “I did not order or talk about killing him. I am innocent of that, and that’s a fact.”

Succeeding slain leader

Disputing accusations that he had plotted to take over the Ghee Kung Tong after feuding with Leung over money, Chow said that after the 2006 murder, “nobody wanted to take that position” because of the obvious dangers. Elders turned to him to succeed Leung, he said, because “I already was a target on the street.”

Later, Chow testified, he finished an overseas building sale that Leung had started and enlisted Leung’s son to travel to China and bring the money home.

Chow was arrested last year after a five-year undercover FBI investigation that focused on the organization he ran and resulted in charges against 29 defendants. The most noteworthy defendant was state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, who pleaded guilty in July to charges of accepting bribes from agents posing as campaign contributors in exchange for promises of political favors and an illegal firearms deal.

Keith Jackson, a former San Francisco school board president and an associate of Chow’s, was also arrested. Jackson pleaded guilty to the same charges as Yee.

Chow has been held without bail since his arrest in March 2014. His testimony was briefly delayed in the afternoon when a juror suffered what U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer described as a recurring anxiety attack and was replaced by an alternate.

While acknowledging an extensive criminal past, Chow told the jury that the Ghee Kung Tong “never had any engagement in any illegal activity” while he was its leader, despite crimes by “individual members.”

Chow, dressed neatly in a brown sport jacket and tie, opened his testimony by recounting his involvement with a criminal syndicate as a youth in his native Hong Kong.

“I don’t have no childhood like normal people,” Chow said. A gang leader at age 12, he said he got into street fights with opposing gangs and started using drugs at 14. He emigrated legally to San Francisco with his parents at 16, but lasted only a month in high school before another street battle sent him fleeing to Chinatown, where he lived in a basement room.

Trying to avoid crime

Chow said he was first arrested for armed robbery at age 17, in 1977, and spent more than seven years in prison, where he “became very knowledgeable in crime.” He was soon rearrested after a gunfight in a local restaurant — Chow said he was acting in self-defense — and spent three more years behind bars.

This time, he said, he tried to go straight, working as a janitor, a grocery clerk and a bodyguard at a law office. But San Francisco police were following him and cost him at least one job by telling his employer about his criminal record.

“I tried very hard to stay out and not be a criminal,” Chow said. “I don’t know if I failed or society failed.”

(Courtesy, the San Francisco Chronicle)

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I've got to say, America's enemies in the 21st Century just don't strike any fear in me compared to the enemy of my youth, the Soviet Union. Al Qaeda and ISIS, even if they were pulling off a 9/11 event once a month in America, that would be 3,000 dead once a month? Nothing compared to what an all out nuclear exchange between the US and the Soviets could have done, like wipe out life on Earth! Even a limited nuclear exchange could have killed 100 million Americans.

I think the powers-that-be always want the masses fearing an external enemy, most likely to distract us from internal enemies here at home like the 1% of us who are dominating the economy. They are much more of a threat to me than ISIS any day.

Keith Bramstedt

San Anselmo

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I hate the space movies too, for any number of reasons, but first and foremost, the complete lack of any faithfulness to the laws of physics. I grew up during the Apollo program and found it to be one of the greatest achievements of mankind, and certainly the greatest achievement by this country. I’ve read every technical book on the subject and virtually every biography or autobiography of the participants. Apollo came at a time when this country truly was great. Due to its success, we all assumed the progress would be continual and we would venture to the stars.

By the time the space shuttle was blasting its clunky, inefficient ship into low-earth orbit, I knew we were never going to Mars or the stars, that the reality was that, due to the limits of physics, we are bound to stay on this planet, forever, or until we go extinct or the sun explodes and destroys it.

I can’t watch the space movies because they are so utterly devoid of any knowledge of physics, even if one assumes things like light-speed travel and artificial gravity are possible. Plus, they are so horribly obviously good versus evil. It’s the same tired theme played over and over. Give it a rest.

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‘New York Smokers Get Bolder’

by Fred Gardner

So said the headline on a New York Times story December 15. (Thanks to Steve Robinson, MD, for sending.) The piece by Sarah Maslin Nir begins:

"It wafts down the pavement, an unmistakable odor more Haight-Ashbury than New York — the tang of marijuana smoke in the city’s streets."

Nir's thesis is that people are smoking the herb more openly in parts of NYC. But it's hard to prove statistically, she notes:

"Arrests for smoking marijuana are included as part of the Police Department’s database of arrests for possessing the drug and are not a separate category.

"Arrests have fallen in the past year. More than 26,000 people were arrested in 2014 for criminal possession of marijuana in the fifth degree, which included openly burning a joint and possessing more than 25 grams, according to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. Through September of this year, about 12,500 had been arrested, according to the division’s data. A decision to end the stop-and-frisk policing policy last year may also have contributed to the drop. By comparison, summonses for possession have risen, with the total for this year already surpassing the total for all of last year."

The Times story does not say that the next time a person who got a summons for possession is busted — and many will be — they'll face misdemeanor charges. And the time after that, felony charges. (The real crime is disobedience.) The Times does say:

"Through September of this year, 11,099, or nearly 89 percent of those arrested on charges of possessing marijuana in the fifth degree were black or Hispanic, according to the Division of Criminal Justice Services. For the same period, 997 white people were arrested, about 8 percent of the total."

A Brooklyn resident named Anne Collins attributes the blatant pot-smoking to auslanders:

“’It’s not that it’s New York is a pothead county, or city, it’s you’ve got all these people coming from other places,’ Ms. Collins, 53, said. ‘French, German, Chinese, they are all here. Not to mention all of the Californian yuppies. They carry on their lives as they did where they were.’”

Ms. Collins is unaware — and maybe Ms. Nir is, too — that during the Harlem Renaissance, New York City was the epicenter of cannabis culture. After the federal marijuana prohibition was enacted in 1937, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia assigned the New York Academy of Medicine to investigate marijuana from many angles, without bias. (LaGuardia, who'd been a Congressman, knew from US Army studies of marijuana use by soldiers in the Panama Canal Zone that the herb was essentially harmless.) A blue-ribbon committee of 31 scientists was assembled. Physicians from the city Department of Hospitals supervised clinical research involving 77 patients.

An exhaustive investigation into the extent of use by New Yorkers was conducted by a Police Department squad — “two policewomen and four policemen, one of whom was a Negro," according to the physician who described their methods in the committee's report.

“While on duty the squad actually ‘lived’ in the environment in which marihuana smoking or peddling was suspected. They frequented poolrooms, bars and grills, dime-a-dance halls, other dance halls to which they took their own partners, theatres — backstage and in the audience‚ roller skating rinks, subways, public toilets and parks and docks. They consorted with the habitués of these places, chance acquaintances on the street, loiterers around schools, subways, and bus terminals. They posed as ‘suckers’ from out of town and as students in college and high schools.”

What follows are the findings of these unbiased undercover operatives, published in "The Marihuana Problem in the City of New York” (which is sometimes referred to as "The LaGuardia Commission Report"). The Haight-Ashbury had nothing on the neighborhood known as Uptown, man. One stellar observation is in boldface.

Method of Retail Distribution

In general, marihuana is used in the form of a cigarette. Occasionally some individuals chew the “weed” and seem to get the same effect as do others through smoking. The common names for the cigarettes are: muggles, reefers, Indian hemp, weed, tea, gage and sticks. Cigarettes made of marihuana differ in size as do cigarettes made of tobacco: they are long, short, thick or thin.

Price varies in accordance with the accepted opinion as to the potency of the marihuana used in the cigarettes,

The price varies in accordance with the accepted opinion as to the potency of the marihuana used in the cigarettes, and this appears to be determined by the place of origin. The cheapest brand is known as “sass-fras,” and retails for approximately three for 50 cents. It is made of the marihuana that is grown in the United States. Smokers do not consider such marihuana very potent. They have found that they must consume a greater number of cigarettes in order to obtain the desired effect colloquially termed as “high.” This opinion, expressed by smokers in the Borough of Manhattan, is at variance with that of some authorities who believe that marihuana grown in the United States is as potent as the marihuana grown in other countries.

The “panatella” cigarette, occasionally referred to as “meserole,” is considered to be more potent than the “sass-fras” and usually retails for approximately 25 cents each. The hemp from which the “panatella” is made comes from Central and South America.

“Gungeon” is considered by the marihuana smoker as the highest grade of marihuana. It retails for about one dollar per cigarette. The “kick” resulting from the use of this cigarette is reached more quickly than from the use of “sassafras” or “panatella.” It appears to be the consensus that the marihuana used to make the “gungeon” comes from Africa. The sale of this cigarette is restricted to a clientele whose economic status is of a higher level than the majority of marihuana smokers.

A confirmed marihuana user can readily distinguish the quality and potency of various brands, just as the habitual cigarette or cigar smoker is able to differentiate between the qualities of tobacco. Foreign-made cigarette paper is often used in order to convince the buyer that the “tea is right from the boat.”

There are two channels for the distribution of marihuana cigarettes — the independent peddler and the “tea-pad.” From general observations, conversations with “pad” owners, and discussions with peddlers, the investigators estimated that there were about 500 “tea-pads” in Harlem and at least 500 peddlers.

A “tea-pad” is a room or an apartment in which people gather to smoke marihuana. The majority of such places are located in the Harlem district. It is our impression that the landlord, the agent, the superintendent or the janitor is aware of the purposes for which the premises are rented. The “tea-pad” is furnished according to the clientele it expects to serve. Usually, each “tea-pad” has comfortable furniture, a radio, victrola or, as in most instances, a rented nickelodeon. The lighting is more or less uniformly dim, with blue predominating. An incense is considered part of the furnishings. The walls are frequently decorated with pictures of nude subjects suggestive of perverted sexual practices. The furnishings, as described, are believed to be essential as a setting for those participating in smoking marihuana.

Most “tea-pads” have their trade restricted to the sale of marihuana. Some places did sell marihuana and whisky, and a few places also served as houses of prostitution. Only one “teapad” was found which served as a house of prostitution, and in which one could buy marihuana, whisky, and opium.

The marihuana smoker derives greater satisfaction if he is smoking in the presence of others. His attitude in the “tea-pad” is that of a relaxed individual, free from the anxieties and cares of the realities of life. The “tea-pad” takes on the atmosphere of a very congenial social club. The smoker readily engages in conversation with strangers, discussing freely his pleasant reactions to the drug and philosophizing on subjects pertaining to life in a manner which, at times, appears to be out of keeping with his intellectual level. A constant observation was the extreme willingness to share and puff on each other’s cigarettes. A boisterous, rowdy atmosphere did not prevail and on the rare occasions when there appeared signs indicative of a belligerent attitude on the part of a smoker, he was ejected or forced to become more tolerant and quiescent.

One of the most interesting setups of a “tea-pad,” which was clearly not along orthodox lines from the business point of view, was a series of pup tents arranged on a roof-top in Harlem. Those present proceeded to smoke their cigarettes in the tents. When the desired effect of the drug had been obtained they all merged into the open and engaged in a discussion of their admiration of the stars and the beauties of nature.

Because of the possibility of spreading disease, note should be taken of what seems to be a custom known as “pick-up” smoking. It is an established practice whereby a marihuana cigarette is lit and after one or two inhalations is passed on to the next person. This procedure is repeated until all present have had an opportunity to take a puff or two on the cigarette.

Occasionally a “tea-pad” owner may have peddlers who sell their wares in other localities and at the same time serve as procurers for those who wish to smoke marihuana on the premises.

One also finds other methods of retail distribution. After proper introduction, one may be able to purchase the cigarette in certain places. This is not an easy procedure, but it can be accomplished. In some bar-and-grills, restaurants, and bars our investigators were able to establish contact with someone who in turn, would introduce them to a peddler who apparently made regular rounds of these places in order to sell cigarettes. It appears that the owners of such places are not aware of this practice, and in many instances they would discharge any employee known to be directly or indirectly associated with the sale of marihuana.

On rare occasions public guides, if properly approached would refer one to a place where the “reefer” could be bought. There was no evidence that the guide received money when acting as go- between. Terminal porters, mainly Negroes, appeared to be more directly connected with the traffic of marihuana. They were more conversant with the subject and it was easier for them to establish contact between purchaser and peddler.

Marihuana smoking is very common in the theatres of Harlem according to the observations of the investigators. We have reason to believe that in some instances, perhaps few in number, employees actually sold cigarettes on the premises. In the Harlem dance halls smoking was frequently observed either in the lavatories or on the main floor. The patrons as well as the musicians were seen in the act of smoking. There was no evidence of sales being made by employees on the premises, or that there was any gain on the part of the owners or employees in permitting this practice. Whereas the smoking of marihuana was not encouraged, nothing was done to prohibit such practice.

There are specific sections in the Borough of Manhattan where the sale of marihuana cigarettes appears to be localized: 1) the Harlem district; 2) the Broadway area, a little east and west of Broadway and extending from 42nd Street to 59th Street. While it is true that one may buy the cigarette in other districts, it is not as easily obtainable as in the two localities mentioned.

The consensus of marihuana users is that the drug is not harmful and that infrequent or constant use of marihuana does not result in physical or mental deterioration.

The Mental Attitude of the Marihuana Smoker Toward Society

Most of the smokers of marihuana coming within the scope of our survey were unemployed, and of the others most had part-time employment.

Occasional, as well as confirmed, users were all aware of the laws pertaining to the illegal use of the drug. They did not indulge in its use with a spirit of braggadocio or as a challenge to law as has been reported by some investigators in other districts. They did not express remorse concerning their use of marihuana, nor did they blame this habit as a causative factor in the production of special difficulties in their personal lives. Except for musicians there appeared to be no attempt at secretiveness on the part of the habitual smoker. This attitude is in marked contrast to that usually taken by those addicted to morphine, cocaine, or heroin.

The consensus of marihuana users is that the drug is not harmful and that infrequent or constant use of marihuana does not result in physical or mental deterioration.

In describing the most common reaction to the drug they always stated that it made them feel “high.” Elaboration of just what the smoker meant by “high” varied with the individual. However, there was common agreement that a feeling of adequacy and efficiency was induced by the use of marihuana and that current mental conflicts were allayed. Organic illness was not given as a cause for smoking “reefers.”

A person may be a confirmed smoker for a prolonged period, and give up the drug voluntarily without experiencing any craving for it or exhibiting withdrawal symptoms. He may, at some time later on, go back to its use. Others may remain infrequent users of the cigarette, taking one or two a week, or only when the “social setting” calls for participation. From time to time we had one of our investigators associate with a marihuana user. The investigator would bring up the subject of smoking. This would invariably lead to the suggestion that they obtain some marihuana cigarettes. They would seek a “tea-pad,” and if it was closed the smoker and our investigator would calmly resume their previous activity, such as the discussion of life in general or the playing of pool. There were apparently no signs indicative of frustration in the smoker at not being able to gratify the desire for the drug. We consider this point highly significant since it is so contrary to the experience of users of other narcotics. A similar situation occurring in one addicted to the use of morphine, cocaine, or heroin would result in a compulsive attitude on the part of the addict to obtain the drug. If unable to secure it, there would be obvious physical and mental manifestations of frustration. This may be considered presumptive evidence that there is no true addiction in the medical sense associated with the use of marihuana.

The confirmed marihuana smoker consumes perhaps from six to ten cigarettes per day. He appears to be quite conscious of the quantity he requires to reach the effect called “high.” Once the desired effect is obtained he cannot be persuaded to consume more.

He knows when he has had enough. The smoker determines for himself the point of being “high,” and is ever conscious of preventing himself from becoming “too high.”

He knows when he has had enough. The smoker determines for himself the point of being “high,” and is ever conscious of preventing himself from becoming “too high.” This fear of being “too high” must be associated with some form of anxiety which causes the smoker, should he accidentally reach that point, immediately to institute measures so that he can “come down.” It has been found that the use of such beverages as beer, or a sweet soda pop, is an effective measure. Smokers insist that “it does something to the stomach” and that it is always associated with “belching.” A cold shower will also have the effect of bringing the person “down.”

Smokers have repeatedly stated that the consumption of whisky while smoking negates the potency of the drug. They find it is very difficult to get “high” while drinking whisky, and because of that smokers will not drink whisky while using the “weed.” They do, however, consume large quantities of sweet wines. It is their contention that this mild alcoholic beverage aids the drug in producing the desired effect. Most marihuana smokers insist that the appetite is increased as the result of smoking.

We have been unable to confirm the opinion expressed by some investigators that marihuana smoking is the first step in the use of such drugs as cocaine, morphine, and heroin. The instances are extremely rare where the habit of marihuana smoking is associated with addiction to these other narcotics.

Marihuana and Eroticism

In the popular agitation against the use of marihuana, its erotic effects have been stressed repeatedly. As previously stated in this report, our investigators visited many “tea-pads” in the Borough of Manhattan. It is true that lewd pictures decorated the walls but they did not find that they were attracting attention or comment among the clientele. In fact one of the investigators who was concentrating his attention on the relation between marihuana and eroticism stated in his report that he found himself embarrassed in that he was the only one who examined the pictures on the wall.

Numerous conversations with smokers of marihuana revealed only occasional instances in which there was any relation between the drug and eroticism. At one time one of our investigators attended a very intimate social gathering in an apartment in Harlem, having succeeded in securing the position of doorman for the occasion.

There was a great deal of drinking, and the dancing was of the most modern, abandoned, “jitter-bug” type. This form of dancing is highly suggestive and appears to be associated with erotic activity. The investigator made careful observation of those who were dancing, and found that there was no difference between the ones who were and the ones who were not smoking “reefers.” Similar impressions were received after careful observations in public dance halls, places where they knew that some persons were under the influence of marihuana.

Visits to brothels which occasionally also served as “teapads” revealed that the use of marihuana was not linked to sexuality. These observations allow us to come to the conclusion that in the main marihuana was not used for direct sexual stimulation.

(Bonus track for older New Yorkers: "Sometimes I Miss the IRT.")

* * *


by James Kunstler

Theory du jour: the new Star Wars movie is sucking in whatever meager disposable lucre remains among the economically-flayed mid-to-lower orders of America. In fact, I propose a new index showing an inverse relationship between Star Wars box office receipts and soundness of the financial commonweal. In other words, Star Wars is all that remains of the US economy outside of the obscure workings of Wall Street — and that heretofore magical realm is not looking too rosy either in this season of the Great Rate Hike after puking up 623 points of the DJIA last Thursday and Friday.

Here I confess: for thirty years I have hated those stupid space movies, as much for their badly-written scripts (all mumbo-jumbo exposition of nonsensical story-lines between explosions) as for the degenerate techno-narcissism they promote in a society literally dying from the diminishing returns and unintended consequences of technology.

It adds up to an ominous Yuletide. Turns out that the vehicle the Federal Reserve’s Open Market Committee was driving in its game of “chicken” with oncoming reality was a hearse. The occupants are ghosts, but don’t know it. A lot of commentators around the web think that the Fed “pulled the trigger” on interest rates to save its credibility. Uh, wrong. They had already lost their credibility. What remains is for these ghosts to helplessly watch over the awesome workout, which has obviously been underway for quite a while in the crash of commodity prices (and whole national economies — e.g. Brazil, Canada, Australia), the janky regions of the bond markets, the related death of the shale oil industry, and the imploding hedge fund scene.

As it were, all credit these days looks shopworn and threadbare, as if the capital markets had by stealth turned into a swap meet of previously-owned optimism. Who believes in anything these days besides the allure of fraud? Capital is supposedly plentiful these days — look how much has rushed into the dollar from the nervous former go-go nations with their wobbling ziggurats of bad loans and surfeit of production capacity — but what actually constitutes that capital? Answer: the dwindling faith anyone will pay you back next Tuesday for a hamburger today.

We now enter the “discovery” phase of financial collapse, where things labeled “capital” and “credit” turn out to be mere holograms.


Fed Chair Janet Yellen herself had a sort of hologramatic look last Wednesday when she stepped onto her Delphic platform to reveal the long-heralded interest rate news. Perhaps Mrs. Yellen is a figment conjured by George Lucas’s Industrial Light & Magic shop (now owned by Disney). What could be more fitting in a smoke-and-mirrors culture? Anyway, the rude discovery that capital is not what it has appeared to be is now underway, with the power to derail political systems and societies.

Is there anyone who thinks the Presidential election campaign is not completely deranged? Well, it is the analog for America’s deranged financial polity. The graceless Mr. Trump necessarily reflects the just grievances of the great public wad, but has anyone noticed that he is incapable of stringing together two coherent thoughts? I suppose one thought at a time — or maybe a percentage of one thought — is enough to satisfy the sputtering masses, faced as they are by the arrant theft of both their patrimony and their future. But it adds up to something like flying blind through a shitstorm with your pilot in the throes of cerebral infarction. I don’t want to be on that plane.

Then there’s the giant flying reptile known simply as Hillary. She will blow up the sad and noisome remains of the Democratic party and then she will preside over the blow-up of the USA as an advanced techno-industrial society. That final outcome may be inevitable one way or another, but the journey there need not be so harsh. America needs a vision of something other than itself as a permanent demolition derby, which, by the way, will not be “solved” by pushing everyone into a Tesla instead of a Ford F-150.

It’s not just the Federal Reserve; everything around us is backed into a corner. Come January, when the dazzle of Star Wars fades away, you will hear instead through the long dark nights a howl of raging animals. Merry Christmas to all.

(James Kunstler’s third World Made By Hand novel is available! The Fourth and final is complete
 and in production for May 2016 publication)

* * *

MENDO IS ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS for anticipated the following vacancies:


  • Community Development Commission: (1) 2nd District Representative
  • First 5 Mendocino (4) General Representatives
  • In-Home Supportive Services Advisory Council (2): Older Adult/Dependent Adult Advocate, Current or Former IHSS Provider.
  • Mendocino Council of Governments (2): Public Appointee (1st Preference to Countywide Elected Official), Alternate Public Appointee.

If you are interested in serving on this Board or Commission, contact your District Supervisor, or the Executive Office, at 501 Low Gap Road, Room 1010, Ukiah, CA 95482 (707) 463-4441.

LAST DATE FOR FILING: December 30, 2015, or until filled.

* * *


Delusion Banquet

In response to their grief over the news of his impending death, Tozan instructed his students to create a "delusion banquet". After taking a week to prepare, Tozan seated himself, took one bite of the meal and, after instructing his monks "not to make a big commotion over nothing", went to his room and died. Happy Holidays!

Craig Stehr


  1. james marmon December 23, 2015

    Re: Prop 172 money.

    “On Tuesday, Mendocino County Judge Jeanine Nadel, a former county counsel herself, granted Elliott a temporary court order relieving her of an obligation to prepare the ballot title and summary for the proposed measure until the issues can be considered in more detail at hearing scheduled for Jan. 22.”

    “In response to Elliott’s lawsuit, at least one proponent of the ballot measure plans to file a federal lawsuit, alleging the county lawsuit has violated constitutional rights to free speech and to petition the government, said Christopher Neary, attorney for proponents of the ballot measure.”

    “It’s a sort of prior restraint on free speech,” he said.

    “Neary said the lawsuit erroneously claims the measure dictates that supervisors give the fire districts at least 30 percent of the public safety tax revenue. The measure merely requires that the county consider funding the fire districts and to hold public hearings if they decide not to do so, he said.”

    “If the attempt to quash the measure before it gets off the ground is successful, then the county would effectively have used government power to stop people from exercising their rights, Neary said.”

    Okay, lets see. We have the current County Counsel bringing suit again the initiative as a private citizen, for the County, but not on behalf of the County. Then the former County Counsel, now judge, who rules in the current County Counsel’s favor (only in Mental-cino).

    One judge already recused himself from the hearing, declaring a conflict of interest, why hasn’t Nadel done the same?

    This type of legal bravado needs to stop. We know damn well what’s going on, and Elliott’s bull shit move doesn’t convince me that the County is not violating the fire district’s constitutional free speech rights.

    If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, its a duck.

    After Losak, I had hoped that Ms. Elliott would bring some ethic’s into that office, but I guess not.

    Ms. Elliott’s move may be technically legal, but it is nothing more than a dirty underhanded maneuver to silence the public.

    James Marmon, MSW

  2. Randy Burke December 23, 2015

    Folks, what is the problem with providing already approved funding to the fire departments. If you have ever had your life in the hands of a first responder while you bled or ached from a vehicular accident, had your mother airlifted by the helping hands of such servants, been a firefighter and helped save valuable lives and structures, then the issue of sharing some of 172 profits with those that willingly and sacrificially serve becomes a no brainer. Come on, share the spoils. A Coastal Firefighter

  3. Rick Weddle December 23, 2015

    re: ‘…questions for the ‘save the poor crowd…’

    ‘Saving’ the poor isn’t what’s going on, here, Mr. Hollister. That would look and smell different. Whatever real, needed assistance that arrives for the less fortunate in this ‘culture’ is countered by larger, opposing forces after some deliberation. Also, the mentioned delivery of services for the poor is so often tainted by official incompetence, corruption and downright meanness, it kinda takes the fun out of helping those in need indeed.

    If I get your bias correctly, though, all this bother with the poor might be put behind us with some kind of Final Solution…or just keep running along with the current fake ‘dialog’ between the libs and cons for similar results in slow motion.

  4. Lazarus December 23, 2015

    marihuana…? I know, it’s a legit word, but WTF…?

  5. LouisBedrock December 23, 2015

    December is a reminder that Americans live in a deranged Christian Theocracy.

    Christianity is deranged.

    To accept Christian mythology, one must believe there once existed an idyllic garden where the first two specimens of humanity lived under the tyranny of a male god named Jehovah. The woman was fabricated from one of the man’s ribs.

    The woman was convinced by a talking snake to challenge the will of this god by sharing a magic apple with the male. After eating the apple, which may be a metaphor for fornicating or acquiring forbidden knowledge, the two humans were kicked out of the garden.

    All of humankind was stained by this “sin”—a crime whose victim is the male god, and had to bear this stigma until the male god decided to forgive them. The male god, said to be omniscient and omnipotent, nevertheless could not figure out how to forgive humankind without artificially impregnating a virgin with a test-tube of god sperm carried down to earth by a virgin; the virgin bore a male child; the male child grew up and practiced magic like walking on water and raising the dead until, at the age of 33, he was nailed to a cross, where he dangled until he died.

    Three days after he died, his cadaver got up and walked out of the crypt like the zombies in a George Romero movie.

    Christianity is polytheistic. Among the gods in the Christian Pantheon are Jehovah, Jesus, The Virgin Mary, dozens of saints, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, nutcrackers, Santa Claus, and Frosty the Snowman.

    According to the Encyclopedia Britannica,

    “The reason why Christmas came to be celebrated on December 25 remains uncertain, but most probably the reason is that early Christians wished the date to coincide with the Pagan festival marking the “birthday of the unconquered sun” (natalis solis invicti); this festival celebrated the winter solstice when the days began to lengthen and the sun begins to climb higher in the sky.”

    Christmas is part of this perverse mythology.

    Happy Natalis Solis Invicti.

    • LouisBedrock December 23, 2015

      “a test-tube of god sperm carried down to earth by a virgin” should be “a test-tube of god sperm carried down to earth by an angel”

      Although, as I understand, most angels are virgins–except Angel Mendoza who attended high school with me and deflowered the entire cheerleading squad.

      • Harvey Reading December 23, 2015

        As I recall the tale, “sons of god”, or angels, came down to breed with some of Adam’s descendants. Probably thrown in as part of the creation myth to counter questions any normal person would have about inbreeding.

      • Harvey Reading December 23, 2015

        Depressing to think of humans as the end product of evolution. Fortunately, they’re not. Give the planet a few more hundred millions of years, and maybe something truly intelligent will have evolved.

    • LouisBedrock December 23, 2015

      Just as trees and other plants are nourished by horse shit, religion is built upon it,

      • Harvey Reading December 23, 2015


      • Stephen Rosenthal December 23, 2015

        Wrong again. I recently read Walter Isaacson’s exhaustive biography of Einstein and didn’t recall any mention of this. So I double checked (not Scope), the go-to source for urban legends and rumor mongering drivel, which confirmed my suspicion that it was complete and utter nonsense.

      • Stephen Rosenthal December 23, 2015

        Susie, now you’re embarrassing yourself. You cite Lerner and condemn Isaacson. I’m Jewish and, on occasion, read Tikkun, a bunko rag if I ever saw one. I know you can’t help yourself so you’ll respond to this with more bleeding heart quackery, but I’m done.

        Walter Isaacson is the president and CEO of the Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan educational and policy studies institute based in Washington, DC. He has been the chairman and CEO of CNN and the editor of TIME magazine.

        Isaacson’s most recent book, The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution (2014) is a biographical tale of the people who invented the computer, Internet and the other great innovations of the digital age.

        He is the author of Steve Jobs (2011), Einstein: His Life and Universe (2007), Benjamin Franklin: An American Life (2003), and Kissinger: A Biography (1992), and coauthor of The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made (1986).

        Isaacson was born on May 20, 1952, in New Orleans. He is a graduate of Harvard College and of Pembroke College of Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He began his career at The Sunday Times of London and then the New Orleans Times-Picayune. He joined TIME in 1978 and served as a political correspondent, national editor, and editor of digital media before becoming the magazine’s 14th editor in 1996. He became chairman and CEO of CNN in 2001, and then president and CEO of the Aspen Institute in 2003.

        He is chair emeritus of Teach for America, which recruits recent college graduates to teach in underserved communities. From 2005-2007 he was the vice-chair of the Louisiana Recovery Authority, which oversaw the rebuilding after Hurricane Katrina. He was appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate to serve as the chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which runs Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and other international broadcasts of the United States, a position he held from 2009 to 2012. He is on the board of United Airlines, Tulane University, the Overseers of Harvard University, the New Orleans Tricentennial Commission, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Society of American Historians, the Carnegie Institution for Science, and My Brother’s Keeper Alliance.

  6. Jim Armstrong December 23, 2015

    I thought at first that Catch-of-the-day Timoty Alllen had to be a typo. That is, however, the official listing, though both first and last names put a strain on Google.

    I am often struck by how quickly the cry wolf forecasts out of the National Weather Service in Eureka are lost and gone forever.
    6 to 10 inches of rain was their official prognostication for this Monday and Tuesday for inland Mendocino County.
    I live in one of the often mentioned flood prone areas and that might have approached 1964 levels.
    I was as prepared and nervous as I could be, thankful for the respite but not the scare.

  7. Whyte Owen December 23, 2015

    Antidote to space movies for those that might like SF:

    Ian Banks

  8. Jim Updegraff December 23, 2015

    On Comment of the Day: It always amazes me how fans wear outfits like the actors. It is a life without substance when you live in such a fantasy

    – – – There are billions of planets in the universe – I wonder on those that have life they found it necessary to conjure up a god story to explain their existence.

    – – – Cops are like all bureaucrats – they don’r want to share their toys (money) with others (fire districts).

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