Island Life

Vol. 21 - No. 10Bay Area News and Views since 1998 Sunday March 10, 2019

{Formerly Island-Life}

Current Edition - Year 2019


Welcome to the 21st year of this weekly column that's updated fifty-two times a year, on Sunday nights or Monday mornings, depending on how well the booze holds out. If you've got any news, clues or rumors to share from around the Bay, or the world, feel free to send them to Editor@Island-Life.net or use the envelope in the masthead. For previous issues, including 2018, visit the Archives.


The Editor
Denby -
Reporter
Bea -
Artwork
Chad -
Coding
Tammy -
Fotos
Hildegard -
Europe News


MARCH 10, 2019

DINER

This iconic image was snapped by Carol in the Gold Coast area off of Webster and is one of those last vestiges of Old Tyme Alameda when the streets were lined with shops that sported big neon signs like this one.

NEW TIMES! NEW TIMES! NEW, NEW, NEW TIMES!

Ok the Island is set to vote on Measure A to apportion the McKay Avenue parcel that was used and disused by the Feds via GSA to either make the place a Senior wellness center cum support services for homeless or not. Pretty much everybody with serious influence is in favor and the anti group consists of a disparate group of unfunded individuals whose argument the development would cost taxpayers is entirely erroneous.

Given that this project replaces the previous one that would have jacked the traffic situation six ways to Sunday down there, we would have to say this is a no-brainer yes.

Look, in this era of land-greed somebody is going to build something down there and there is no way of avoiding that save hand the place over to the Parks as was attempted initially. We think what would have been the best outcome. Well, that is not going to fly, so people get real with what is.

The Black Brothers will hold forth at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, Sunday, St. Patrick's Day. Brothers Michael and Shay Black play an exciting mix of Dublin street songs, music hall songs, and historical ballads, as well as songs from the Irish, English, and Scottish traditions. Singing in close harmony, telling funny stories, and even dancing occasionally, Michael and Shay draw people in with their energy, wit, and superb musicianship

It is Late Winter season, so there is a lot of chancy newnames appearing at the Fox and the Paramount in Oaktown. If you missed Black Ladysmith Mambazo at the Freight and Yoshi's, well, too bad. They are gone now. And Judy Collins is sold out, but you can still get Elvin Bishop at the end of the month and he is always worth the price of admission.


LET IT RAIN, LET IT POUR

So anyway. This past week the rain came down with a vengeance. It poured down in monsoon strength, giving us record-breaking numbers. The rain pounded Santa Cruz and it drenched Santa Rose with levels more appropriate for places like Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana. Hillsides slid down taken houses with them. Roads were obliterated. Creeks normally inches deep swelled to 8, 12, 15 feet. Chunks of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge dropped down to wreck cars, closing the entire bridge for hours.

Then it all subsided to intermittent showers, steady winds. The engineers put a steel plate into the bridge. The workers shored up the hillsides and shoved the dirt and rocks to the side to open up the roads.

Power went out of course all over the place. The Household of Marlene and Andre made do with a fire in the stone fireplace providing heat and rations of bread soup for everyone by the light of scattered candles, electric lanterns, flashlights.

On the Island, Mr. Howitzter had Dodd distribute octopus cocktail canapes by candlelight in his mansion during his annual midwinter soiree while the band sawed through a number of acoustic waltzes. At the Old Same Place Bar, Suzie and Dawn served up traditional cocktails and highballs by the light of electric hurricane lanterns. Everyone got by until the lights came back on and everyone stared at one another with astonishment in the bright new light as if they had never seen before.

The sudden light caught Pimenta Strife with her hand down inside some guy's pants.

In the Island-Life offices the Editor continued to scribble by the light of a desklamp that never went out while outside the San Geronimo Creek gurgled and plashed. The word had arrived that the Sierra snowpack was 120% above normal, and so there would be skiiing well into April this year, and another year of drought pushed away. For now.

And so the Editor continued to work, the remaining white hairs on his head flying about in an aureole.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over Fairfax and White's Hill, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

March 3, 2019

Issue cancelled due to illness

 

FEBRUARY 24, 2019

WHEN THE MUSIC' S OVER

This week's image is of our Chad's banjo. In the guitar case there was a frailing pick and two playing cards. No idea what significance the cards, silent relics of an untold story.

NEWS

News is Gung Hay Fat Choi for the Chinese New Year and the year of the Pig, which seems appropriate in these Trumpian\Weinstein times. Every year Mei Mei goes to the annual Chinatown Parade to see Gum Lung, the dragon, which seemed so enormous when she was so small, but with each passing year, as things changed with Mei Mei, the dragon seemed to get smaller.

Now she had children of her own and they pointed up in fear, "O the dragon is so big! So big!"

Baby Blunt is having his Emergency reviewed and somebody somewhere won an Oscar award.

FOR A DANCER

So anyway, Baby Blunt is still on a rampage about getting his wall between his property and that belonging to Brown People. Largely because he was denied during the last election of a majority supporting his enterprise and also being sued by a number of Me**Too** folks and under investigation of collaborating with the Enemies of the Island in the form of Russian Collusionists, Baby Blunt has in his own mind a State of Emergency, which generally is the last resort of tin-pot dictators who wear mirror sunglasses and epaulets.

We see how much this sort of image helped Musharrif and Idi Amin and Ghaddafi. And the Berlin Wall is a good example of how effective these things are in reality. But nevertheless, Baby Blunt wants his wall to protect his garden vegetables and in his mind he has an emergency because nobody takes him seriously and that is a problem.

Denby got let out of jail after the latest Valentine's day Massacree Disaster and headed wearily home after a long discussion with the desk sergeant who felt that Denby should stop engaging in illegal activity and doubtful circumstances every year.

Denby protested that it was not he, but the circumstances at fault all the time.

Then how is it you wound up in the women's restroom of the movie theatre without your pants that time?

That was children's bubblegum, Denby tried to explain.

Last I heard bubblegum has neither intoxicating nor aphrodesiac qualities. If it does turn out to possess such powers, please let me know and I will purchase a case. But I suspect you were under the influence by other means, so do not blame Double Bubble.

And so it went. It is impossible to prove innocence, as many a one falsely charged can attest, while guilt is easy to suppose.

Please do not come into my jail during Valentine's time or any other time for that matter, as I find you a troublesome sort and a blot upon the honor of my District. Go away and come no more, said the Sergeant.

So it was, Denby got on the bus and returned to Silvan Acres even as the rains began again to flail the sweet earth and the trees. As the bus pulled up to the willow-hung bus-stop Jose and Javier were there to greet him and give him the news about Doyle who had suffered a stroke up north at the River and was now in Napa, comotose.

The three walked in the rain without umbrellas, using only their fedoras and long coats for protection while the tree branches whipped angrily in the rough wind above them and the cold, cold pellets gathered like ravens, fell down like bombs.

In the Island-Life offices, now a converted barn in Silvan Acres because of the criminal elements that had forced everyone out, the Editor remained in the cavernous space pounded by the weather, all alone and doing his work at the desk lit by a single pool of light. It was mostly dark in that space, save for the occasional desklamp left on, the occasional computer screensaver flickering in the dark pool of shadows. All around hung the muttering curtains of night, while beyond this pale, beyond the circle of dark, somewhere out there gleamed the spirit of a like mind.

At one time he had imagined he had found such a spirit in the flesh, but now that light was extinguished forever. Departed, leaving behind some website code, a banjo and a guitar once held by a founding member of the Jefferson Airplane to add distinction to its humble trash guiltar origins.

Now we hear talk of yet another of the Karass leaving this life.

And what the hell is all this talk about bubblegum and Denby's pants? Ribald comedy interrupts our grief.

Maybe that is the way is should be. Our grief and our trouble is just hysterically funny to other people who take comfort in our pain.

That is just the way it is. That is just the way it has always been and playground bullies have always been there and succeeded in the end.

We have only ourselves and our sense of humanity as sword and shield against those dark forces that burn crosses.

Gum Lung grows and shrinks with our age, always pursuing that glowing, fiery ball down through all the corridors of Time. Perhaps the Dragon, too, pursues Company in all the thousands of years of chasing that evasive sphere. What would happen if the Dragon would catch that sphere and become one with it?

In the cold space of the Island-life offices, the Editor sat in the pool of light shed by the single desklamp, his white hair flying about his head in a corolla, searching and doing all for Company.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over Fairfax and White's Hill, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

FEBRUARY 17, 2019

SHOCK THE MONKEY

The recent storms have caused havoc on many streets. Here is a shot of where powerlines were brought low in Woodacre.

This Global Climate Change has consequences, as some of us understand.

PINK MOON

So anyway. This Valentine's day proved to be no different than all the others for members of Marlene and Andre's household.

But before we get into that romantic stuff, all the latest flap in Silly Hall was about Baby Blunt's hissy fit over not getting his wall approved. For those of you just catching up, Baby Blunt owns a big construction company and was set to block City Hall's entrance with a couple of his five ton loader rigs.

These rigs are all bigger than anything you have seen on the Teevee program Highway Through Hell. Blunt was going to set down a series of concrete freeway dividers in addition so as to totally block government, but Silly Council came through -- for once -- and all voted to keep the government open, especially as the entrance is shared with the Police Department and we couldn't have no Baby Blunt, no matter how rich and famous and all those things, blocking the Police and Officer O'Madhauen was right on it, for obstructing the passage of official police cars was all kinds of mean, nasty, lawbreaking kinds of things and if Blunt dared become a perpetrator of such heinous anti-traffic statutes, he was gonna make darn sure this alleged perpetrator of all kinds of mean, nasty kinds of things would be hauled off into a tiny, dark room in the newly re-aquired jail where Blunt would be interrogated, irrigated, dissipated, irradiated, syncopated, and further remediated by a number of Boys in Blue who like to play with Babys like Mr. Blunt.

Yes, they have ways of making bad boys behave. And we call that all Supreme Justice.

So Baby Blunt acted as mature as he always does. He pitched a fit, rolling on the ground, screaming, crying and shaking his rattle at the sky in the most severe of anguish that he wanted his wall so bad the original reason for the Wall had gotten lost in all the tantrums and screaming and accusations.

So Baby Blunt, most mature and adult-like, swiped the treasure-chest savings that were supposed to go to the Crossing Guard Program, claiming, that because he was President of Protection and Discourse, as well as General of Bums, he had the legal right to do so on account of it being a Declared State of Emergency.

And the State of Emergency was that for the first time in History a lot of people united and said NO to Baby Blunt for once.

This, of course, stimulated a legal furor of Olympic proportions, which Baby Blunt enjoys, for he has always done well by chaos and disorder, even though the majority of people do not.

So now we have armies of attornies arrayed in lines of battle over Baby Blunt's declaration of Emergency. Which makes us wonder, just when did this Emergency begin? For it was not referenced at the start of the man's Presidency. It only seems to have become important after the Midterm elections.

Ponder that timing, will you.

As for what is happening along McKay Avenue, we can say that good intentions will not prevail, for the entire progress as been one of irrational greed and pumping more people down that narrow strait than the physical environment can support. Every plan has been like that and the current one is no exception. The region is infected with landgreed fever and that spit is not unaffected. Yes, we can see what you are doing and we can see it still from afar.

Meanwhile, in the San Geronimo Valley, the cold front set in to make the nights stiff with frost. The House residents huddled close in the decrepit buildings there as the rains and hail pounded the acres. Power went out and creeks flooded over the roads. The winds flung huge branches down.

In such an isolated place and in such weather, Denby felt confident and assured that this year would pass with no contretemps upon the dreaded V-day that so many others adore.

That night he went out with the gang to the Saloon where a band played old school blues and everyone had a few beers and all was groovy because the place was filled with Blues and good music and the band was good and everyone was having a good time and Denby danced mostly with Marsha from New Jersey, save for a few rounds with a willow-haired gal from Lagunitas, whose name turned out to be, unsurpisingly, Willow. There was no Trouble anywhere to be seen at all. Then everyone went back home after last call and everything was fine until a rude light shone in Denby's eyes before dawn.

Turned out he was under arrest for consorting with somebody under the Me-too-movement and there was nothing to be done about it. Until it all got cleared up.

In the San Rafael jail, Denby looked up at the moonlight of the new Snow Moon streaming through and asked just why this sort of thing always happened to him and god answered, because Denby, I really love you.

Thanks alot, Denby said.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over Fairfax and White's Hill, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

 

FEBRUARY 10, 2019

DEER ON THE PARKWAY

When you are at loss for a headline foto, there are always images of deer creeping around the place.


HE WAS A GOOD FRIEND OF MINE

This is one of the more difficult issues to write. Life is a vale of tears, full of suffering with only the the scant consolation that it does not go on forever. There is a guaranteed end to all of this, and that is all the guarantee we get. Not even Reincarnation is a guaranteed delivery.

When the body fails while the soul and mind are still in drive, we call that Tragedy, as in the case of Stephen Hawking during his lifetime. When the body fails entirely, halting the mind and allowing the soul to leave the body, we call that Finality, which is Death. After that, there is no going forward; we have only memories.

As of a few hours ago, Chad Chadwick, our in-house web developer and friend of many decades passed away due to a massive heart attack.

The legacy left by his work on Island-Life shall remain preserved for years to come; his personal touch remains on every page and is stamped in many lines of code and we are going to make sure his legacy remains preserved for years to come on the Internet.

We first worked together in a dark place underneath the freeway overpasses in San Francisco in the late 1980's. On the steps of that hardware supplier to contractors Chad attempted to teach us how to play the banjo.

Chad had always been a sharp and astute observer of events from the 1960's onward. He played music in livingroom sessions with founders of the Jefferson Airplane and soon became disillusioned with the music industry's lack of soul. He often had sharp words for Paul Kantner, with whom we attempted briefly a late rapprochement that collapsed due to the distances created between Fame and Normality. Chad felt that Kantner had unfairly stolen his girlfriend at the time.

A multi-instrumentalist, Chad could play banjo, guitar, harmonica and sing quite capably before his lung disease. While I would tune a guitar with a modern electronic tuner, he would call out the pitch on the dot with each adjustment. "Too sharp! Okay . . . a hair flat. . . Bingo! Aye natural!"

Chad was no stranger to this disjunct between Fame and the ocean of average-ness. His grandfather, Charles Nordhoff, wrote the book called Mutiny on the Bounty, that became made into a rather famous movie.

Nordhoff had three daughters and two sons with a half-Danish Titian wife named Christianne Tua Tearae Schmidt, sometimes referred to by the Titian word for "woman", Vahine. After the 2nd son died shortly after childbirth, Nordhoff divorced Vahine and either married or took as a mistress with whom he had three sons.

Marguerite moved eventually to the US, married John Chadwick, and had six children, with one child dying before birth.

Chad lived through the damaged generation that was the 60's and emerged with an acerbic, biting view of life, politics, culture, and American Life that was vividly presented with his savage commentary on the way things are -- the horrific and inevitable consequences of horrific, inhumane policies expressed domestically and abroad the consequences of which we see clearly played out in the present day, including a range of obscenities ranging from what happened to Victor Jara to Trump's porno bimbos.

We met in the late 1980's when both of us worked as slavey's for a contractor hardware-supply company called MacMurray Pacific underneath the freeway overpass at 7th street in San Francisco. There across the street from the 7th Street City Jail where the hookers kept in cells overnight were let out onto the street in the early morning, dressed in red negligee's and high heels, Chad attempted to teach us the banjo.

He had many stories of growing up in Sacramento and moving to San Francisco during the Hippie Era. Although not a Hippie exactly, for he always believed in working for a living, he embodied many of the best ideals of the Sixties Counterculture movements. He quickly realized the world was not going to change save by incremental bits as represented by individuals doing their small bit parts on behalf of peace, kindness and sanity. Other than tobacco and booze, he refrained from hard drugs after seeing what that stuff could do to people. Demonstrations were fine things, but the real work was done by each person acting morally responsible with and to other people around them. Not surprisingly Kurt Vonnegut was a favorite author.

For several years we lost touch until in the late 1990's we arranged for a visit at his lodgings and were shocked to see this once hale and hearty man hooked up to oxygen tanks.

After his diagnosis of COPD and attendant emphysema, Chad retreated from the world, attached to it by the narrow lifeline of the Internet, while still attempting to get out with the help of friends to public arenas.

Chad fought with the heart of a warrior of peace against the effects of his disease. He told us he had dreams of running, running uphill for miles and miles.

He suffered much as his COPD progressed, until he could not leave the house without an oxygen tank. Inside the house, he had to remain hooked to a machine that delivered air to his lungs 24 hours a day. Nevertheless, he remained feisty and pugnacious, challenging ignorant Internet trolls on message boards, posting acid comments on Facebook, and remaining continuously on tap with local as well as national news by way of all the outlets the Internet can provide.

Although he could be severe on self-maintained ignorance and outright boorishness, Chad also preserved the 60's ethic of love for all those who do not bully others. He was possessed of a kind heart that put him in the Aristocracy of the Heart, a level way above most of us who have to play catch-up with someone so magnanimous, so emotionally generous. He found beauty in the most obscure of places in people who had a hard time finding the beauty in themselves.

Well he is out of it now. We lost a great heart and a great soul filled with wisdom. His suffering is now over and now the pain is left to the survivors. Sisters Shannon and Tina both passed away last year, leaving Shelly of who we can find not a trace. As far as we know , Chad is the last of the direct line engendered by the author of the Mutiny on the Bounty save for grandchildren.

Chad is survived by his loving wife, Tammy Chadwick, who lives in Alameda.

As said in the beginning, Life is a vale of tears, full of sorrow and suffering. There is no escape from suffering, not even for Donald Trump; it may be that your time has not yet arrived, or you are particularly obtuse and unobservant -- these things do happen and probably so for Der Donald. Generally those people who have no feelings at all are called Sociopaths.

Again, there is some comfort, a scant comfort at that, there is an end to all of this. The suffering does not go on forever. And now Chad no longer suffers. He is gone and we remain with fond memories of having known him and the legacy left by his work on the Island-life web code shall persist for years.

LET IT RAIN LET IT POUR

So anyway, the rain fell and nourished the sweet earth these past few days. All the hillsides trickled with incidental rivulets that had been dry cuts for years until now and down south people reported snow upon the Santa Cruz mountains.

A kind of concrete rain fell upon the sad Richmond-San Rafael Bridge that was built so long ago as an afterthought with sparse funding and enforced deadlines by tight-assed managers demanding last-minute results from overworked underlings who had always been pushed to the limit even before the project had been initiated. The result is a limp, failure-prone structure that crumbles over time and the result stands before our eyes as an example of bad management.

On the day that the bridge was closed last week, Pahrump turned his scooter around and headed back through the stalled traffic, postponing a provisions run for the Household. Stores and suppliers so bad in Marin that Pahrump was compelled to head over to the East Bay to fetch basic necessities for the House on his scooter, meant that vital necessities would have to be delayed until he could cross again.

Meanwhile I.N.Eptitood contractors spent two days putting in flower plants around the sign in Fairfax for the Rhino gas station, although everyone in their right mind avoided the station for any sort of service other than gas, for the place had a bad reputation for extremely bad service on anything resembling a gas powered internal combustible engine.

Skateboards and bicycles they could fix well enough. Lawnmowers, perhaps. Cars, not so much. With cars they had big problems understanding things like carburetion, exhaust, ignition and spark. Otherwise they were fine, those boys.

The night fell from scattered clouds to another night of frost. The Editor sat at his desk as the Nation prepared for yet another snitty Government shutdown, initiated by the Baby in Chief who wanted his Wall and would have no truck about it.

Unfortunately, there was a great deal about which to write and so little time. He had thought on taking this small-town gig he would be compressed to find things about which to write and found that in the reality there were too few hours in the day to cover it all.

Now, night had fallen and all around the glassed cubicle the muttering voices, the gazing eyes.. Beyond all that, somewhere out in the darkness a like mind. Recently he had lost one of his own and so now was even more alone without Chadwick, his coder.

But somehow Nohow On. Out there must exist a like mind and all was toward unified contemplation. Union with another Creator. Perhaps the One. The Editor persisted in his meditation. Stripping all intervention between himself and Him. Doing all for Company.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

 

FEBRUARY 3, 2019

BABYLON

 

Here is an image of Babylon shot from the verdant hills of Marin. Such a metropolis and so far away.


WE PRINT ALL THE NEWS THAT FITS

Heard the LII something Pooper Soul was to take place. None of us own TeeVees and so much of the Ballyhoo was overblown, as it usually is regardless.
Heard that NE with tom brady vs. LA rams was the ticket.

In more important news, we note that Tracy K. Smith is the current Poet Laureate Consultant to the US. She is currently serving as the 22nd Poet Laureate of the United States, an office she assumed in 2017. She was nominated for an unprecedented 2nd term in 2018. She has published four collections of poetry, winning the Pulitzer Prize for her 2011 volume Life on Mars.

In his review of the collection, Joel Brouwer also quoted at length from this poem, writing that "for Smith the abyss seems as much a space of possibility as of oblivion:"

Perhaps the great error is believing we’re alone,
That the others have come and gone — a momentary blip —
When all along, space might be choc-full of traffic,
Bursting at the seams with energy we neither feel
Nor see, flush against us, living, dying, deciding,
...

Dan Chiasson writes of another aspect of the collection: "The issues of power and paternalism suggest the deep ways in which this is a book about race. Smith’s deadpan title is itself racially freighted: we can’t think about one set of fifties images, of Martians and sci-fi comics, without conjuring another, of black kids in the segregated South. Those two image files are situated uncannily close to each other in the cultural cortex, but it took this book to connect them."

We look forward eagerly to who shall assume the laurel wreath for 2019.

Now what if we held a Super Bowl of Poetry? Would not that be something to celebrate and truly Make America Great Also? Well, if America really wants to be Great Also with the likes of China, which cannot conduct any sort of industrial enterprise without stealing, as it seems, or the Russian Empire, which does not seem to be able to make anything great without also stealing and blocking the advance of foreigners in a sort of native Californian style,

Dweeb report on weather - Pineapple express coming in lead by a cold front that is the mother of all cold fronts.

LAND OF THE BOTTOM LINE

So anyway. The Pooper Soul LIII happened. Somebody won, the unpopular guy at the prom, we guess by all the noise.

Oh well. Somebody had to win for somebody to lose or vice versa. Thats the way it goes.

A few dockwallopers set in this past week to drench the Island and environs, causing all activities to hustle indoors. The Old Same Place Bar has been a-bustle with Padraic and Dawn serving up those famous Gaelic Coffees, infused with Jameson's and other mysterious ingredients, while the busstop midway around the circle has seen Reverend Inquist and Pastor Danyluk and Rebbi Mendelnusse collecting for confabs on the failings of the faithful and the difficulties of the clergy in times like these, fraught with lunatic Creationists and Anti-Scientists selling false pardons to Global Warming Parties as was done in the old Medieval days of ignorance and deceit called The Dark Ages.

Mr. "Baby" Blunt was made to unblock the City Hall government by more mature adults, but he is still threatening to do the same again if he does not get his "beautiful wall", installed and paid for by his neighbors, whom he detests.

A number of people have been talking about this wall and commenting that building a wall around an Island seems really foolish and stupid and a waste of tax dollars better spent on running the government that after the blockade now everybody realizes is terribly necessary.

This realization has caused the Radical Right some concern, for their main issue was that less government is better and now people have realized they need more govenment, not less after doing without much of it for 36 days.

It all sucked while Baby Blunt had his tantrum and so now people know that goverment workers actually do something for the money.

To oversimplify, if you want a toilet when you go to the seashore, you need to pay for it. You want someone to rush in and defend the coastline with something like the Coast Guard when the Chinese invade, you gotta pay for it. Nobody gonna risk their lives for your sorry ass for free.

Meanwhile, a cold front is coming in to superchill the Bay Area that is not used to frozen temperatures.

Nevermind that the Midwest just got itself unstuck from minus 40 degrees.

Clearly, the climate has gone wacko and we hope you Bushian denialists, and other climate-denialists are enjoying the weather now caused by carbon emissions, all repleate with floods, fires, and freezes, because there will be political repercussions come Spring. Yes, you Assholes.Yes, you, who will be remembered.

The recent storms swept the San Geronimo Valley undisturbed. All the trees that were to fall, did fall in the last storm, and the heavy branches still held above the powerlines. Toto had a tumor removed from one of his anal glands and so he ran about in the rain with a swollen, red butt, pooping at will and pissing as usual upon the usual suspects, save for he wore for the nonce a plastic cone that prevented him disturbing his stitches. This resulted in some bonking upon the walls where he was used to sniff, but otherwise he was fine.

In the Offices of Island Life, now become Silvan Acres, the Editor arranged his papers. Stories about Toto were placed here in this corner, and stories about San Geronimo Presbyterian were placed in this other corner and stories about the rain and floods and the creeks were placed here . . .

The Editor realized that because of the expectation of weather and its unruliness, all was left in a state of stasis. Not much could happen until all this weather was done with, for anything could happen at any time due to rain and flood. And after a season, anything could happen due to fire and drought.

What can one do in such times save persist and go on.

“I don’t know: perhaps it’s a dream, all a dream. (That would surprise me.) I’ll wake, in the silence, and never sleep again. (It will be I?) Or dream (dream again), dream of a silence, a dream silence, full of murmurs (I don’t know, that’s all words), never wake (all words, there’s nothing else).

You must go on, that’s all I know.

They’re going to stop, I know that well: I can feel it. They’re going to abandon me. It will be the silence, for a moment (a good few moments). Or it will be mine? The lasting one, that didn’t last, that still lasts? It will be I?

You must go on.

I can’t go on.

You must go on.

I’ll go on. You must say words, as long as there are any - until they find me, until they say me. (Strange pain, strange sin!) You must go on. Perhaps it’s done already. Perhaps they have said me already. Perhaps they have carried me to the threshold of my story, before the door that opens on my story. (That would surprise me, if it opens.)

It will be I? It will be the silence, where I am? I don’t know, I’ll never know: in the silence you don’t know.

"You must go on.

I can’t go on.

I’ll go on.”

The Editor sits at his table in the Offices after all the staff have gone home and the cold rain beats now upon the saggy roof and tired windowpanes.

His desk is lit by the pool of a single desklamp and the dim light of the monitor in front of him. A notepad sits to the left and a mouse sits below that on the keyboard platform that extends from the old cherrywood desk that once was a schooldesk in Iowa in the late 1800's.

Tonight he does all for Company. As usual. Nohow on, ill seen, ill said. A voice comes to one in the dark . . . Imagine.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

FEBRUARY 17, 2019

SHOCK THE MONKEY

The recent storms have caused havoc on many streets. Here is a shot of where powerlines were brought low in Woodacre.

This Global Climate Change has consequences, as some of us understand.

PINK MOON

So anyway. This Valentine's day proved to be no different than all the others for members of Marlene and Andre's household.

But before we get into that romantic stuff, all the latest flap in Silly Hall was about Baby Blunt's hissy fit over not getting his wall approved. For those of you just catching up, Baby Blunt owns a big construction company and was set to block City Hall's entrance with a couple of his five ton loader rigs.

These rigs are all bigger than anything you have seen on the Teevee program Highway Through Hell. Blunt was going to set down a series of concrete freeway dividers in addition so as to totally block government, but Silly Council came through -- for once -- and all voted to keep the government open, especially as the entrance is shared with the Police Department and we couldn't have no Baby Blunt, no matter how rich and famous and all those things, blocking the Police and Officer O'Madhauen was right on it, for obstructing the passage of official police cars was all kinds of mean, nasty, lawbreaking kinds of things and if Blunt dared become a perpetrator of such heinous anti-traffic statutes, he was gonna make darn sure this alleged perpetrator of all kinds of mean, nasty kinds of things would be hauled off into a tiny, dark room in the newly re-aquired jail where Blunt would be interrogated, irrigated, dissipated, irradiated, syncopated, and further remediated by a number of Boys in Blue who like to play with Babys like Mr. Blunt.

Yes, they have ways of making bad boys behave. And we call that all Supreme Justice.

So Baby Blunt acted as mature as he always does. He pitched a fit, rolling on the ground, screaming, crying and shaking his rattle at the sky in the most severe of anguish that he wanted his wall so bad the original reason for the Wall had gotten lost in all the tantrums and screaming and accusations.

So Baby Blunt, most mature and adult-like, swiped the treasure-chest savings that were supposed to go to the Crossing Guard Program, claiming, that because he was President of Protection and Discourse, as well as General of Bums, he had the legal right to do so on account of it being a Declared State of Emergency.

And the State of Emergency was that for the first time in History a lot of people united and said NO to Baby Blunt for once.

This, of course, stimulated a legal furor of Olympic proportions, which Baby Blunt enjoys, for he has always done well by chaos and disorder, even though the majority of people do not.

So now we have armies of attornies arrayed in lines of battle over Baby Blunt's declaration of Emergency. Which makes us wonder, just when did this Emergency begin? For it was not referenced at the start of the man's Presidency. It only seems to have become important after the Midterm elections.

Ponder that timing, will you.

As for what is happening along McKay Avenue, we can say that good intentions will not prevail, for the entire progress as been one of irrational greed and pumping more people down that narrow strait than the physical environment can support. Every plan has been like that and the current one is no exception. The region is infected with landgreed fever and that spit is not unaffected. Yes, we can see what you are doing and we can see it still from afar.

Meanwhile, in the San Geronimo Valley, the cold front set in to make the nights stiff with frost. The House residents huddled close in the decrepit buildings there as the rains and hail pounded the acres. Power went out and creeks flooded over the roads. The winds flung huge branches down.

In such an isolated place and in such weather, Denby felt confident and assured that this year would pass with no contretemps upon the dreaded V-day that so many others adore.

That night he went out with the gang to the Saloon where a band played old school blues and everyone had a few beers and all was groovy because the place was filled with Blues and good music and the band was good and everyone was having a good time and Denby danced mostly with Marsha from New Jersey, save for a few rounds with a willow-haired gal from Lagunitas. Then everyone went back home after last call and everything was fine until a rude light shone in Denby's eyes before dawn.

Turned out he was under arrest for consorting with somebody under the Me-Too-movement and there was nothing to be done about it. Until it all got cleared up.

In the San Rafael jail, Denby looked up at the moonlight of the new Snow Moon streaming through and asked just why this sort of thing always happened to him and god answered, because Denby, I really love you.

Thanks alot, Denby said.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

JANUARY 27, 2019

EASY RIDER

Marin can be pretty strange at times, and sometimes in a good way. It has a lot of strange things in it, and one strange thing is the bicycle museum in Fairfax where this 8-foot high item sits in the parking lot. Every weekend this area teems with packs of bicyclists taking advantage of scenic country roads and challenging hills.


LIKE THE WEATHER

Got the latest report from Howard The Dweeb, who runs a ham meteorological service from Mammoth. Seems the Sierra snowpack is 120% above normal, so the drought is done for now. He sees some storms rolling in in early February, so do not put away your impermeables quite yet. Howard also forecast some bitter cold weather for the East and Central regions. Warn your children not to put their tongues on the iron waterpump handle.

BABYLON

So anyway, "Baby" Bobby Blunt did not get his wall and was persuaded to unblock the City government parkinglot when Ms. Morales came up to him and said she needed to get into City Hall to file papers on behalf of her Teacher's Foundation for kids with special needs. Many of these kids and their caregivers were suffering because of the lack of services.

Baby Blunt, of course, summarily dismissed Ms. Morales and her tender charges, saying, "Some people may feel a little pain, but the security of this City is Paramount and in the best interest of all Islanders. We need to be strong together like wooden dowels bound around the handle of an ax to make it stronger. Suck it up buttercup. I alone can solve every problem known to man and child and dog. That is why I appreciate your wholehearted support. Not supporting me is being a Loser. Loser!"

"My children are not losers, sir. They struggle hard and with support they succeed."

"You have an accent. Are you American?"

"I was born on Mandanao in the Philippines," said Ms. Morales honestly. "But today I am as American as anyone and all of my charges were born in the US and they deserve the same protections as any citizen." Ms. Morales stood there, small with her handbag and dowdy black shoes, but yet defiant.

At this point Officer O'Madhauen made an unaccustomed intervention outside his purview of traffic enforcement, for he had listened to all that had transpired.

"Mr. Blunt I urge you to move this 3 ton grader immediately and unblock Government, or I will have it towed and dumped into the Bay, much as that distresses the Environmentalist Clan. I will then have you arrested and taken to Santa Rita where I will inform certain swarthy, biker types that you are a fellow that likes to diddle children. Get this thing out of here within an hour or else."

"You cannot do that. I am exempt, because I am the President of the Lion's Club! And President of many other things besides!"

"Mr. President, I would be honored to haul your cherry-red ass to Santa Rita, for frankly, I do not give a shit and you were elected by a minority besides. The majority will cheer as you encounter your special welcome in the Santa Rita showers. Move the grader. Now!"

The grader got moved and government on the Island was unblocked even as Baby Blunt shouted, "I can do this again if I do not get my beautiful wall!"

Meanwhile experts are looking at Blunt's plan to wall off not just his property, but the entire Island from Oaktown. Most are saying this enterprise is impossible and foolish, but Blunts, as his followers are called, insist this is the Final Solution. Others have said the racial overtones here, plus the term "Final Solution", feel uncomfortable.

Of course, Blunts and Blunt followers see no connections here and say that a little pain on the part of Little People of inconsequence is a small price to pay for Security and Missy Whitesyrup feeling safe in her bed.

Outside of the political arena, where most Americans live, like it or not, folks gathered at the end of a long working day at the Old Same Place Bar to unwind with a bump and a shot. And in a few cases, a bit more than that.

Of course there was some discussion about the Superbowl and how the Saints were robbed, robbed in full sight of everybody save the judges, but the Superbowl shall proceed, checkered and marred with objectionable detritus.

We shall see what transpires SBS, realizing that the Saints should have been there. All else is sheer masquerade. Like the rest of American politics, the Superbowl has become derelict of value. Let us rather look at women's volleyball and World Cup Soccer. The Raiders have abandoned their home city for a foreign place. For this Superbowl is a land leased out; we die pronouncing it.

Meanwhile the last week has been sunny and chill with dappled clouds over both the Island and the San Geronimo Valley. After the MLK holiday and any number of commemorations that still do not much to fix the situation going on in this country for about 400 years since Slavery, everybody went back to work, pursuing their personal lives of quiet desperation, misery, failed marriages, and sometimes momentary joy while traveling the same labyrinth channels they have pursued day after day, year after year, following that one learned path from entrance to the Place of Cheese.

The Editor, back at work after his hiatus as a tree, leaned back in his chair lit by the single desklamp and reflected that he was just like a lab rat following the same path as everyone else, only he was always looking now for the triangle lines of escape, the portholes that defied the assertion that Time is a prison.

The new Island-Life offices were more rustic than the rooms on the densely populated Island. The interior walls consisted of roughhewn boards and redwood beams. The wood floor was unpolished fir and redwood plank. Images of the time when the railway went along SFD Boulevard hung on the walls.

The Editor had lately been perusing through chronicles of the Valley and was pleased to find a rich trove of material. Time began, after the Miwok, who had occupied and taken care of the Valley for some 10,000 years had been decimated, with the Mexican Occupation. "Rafael Cacho, a military officer and friend of General Mariano Vallejo, was the first person to hold title to the San Geronimo Valley. On February 12, 1844, he was granted the 8,800-acre Rancho Cañada de San Geronimo (The Valley of Saint Jerome) by the Mexican government, in acknowledgment of his loyal service as a Mexican citizen."

And what of the railroad and of the plans to develop the place with a superhighway and interchanges and what became of the Master Plan of 1961? The place was rife with delicious History. Things had happened here. Things that reflected what America had been doing.

Renewed with vigor the Editor bent to the task of uncovering the history of Silvan Acres and the San Geronimo Valley.

Out beyond the shroud of darkness the eyes of various creatures gleamed, but inside he was alone, a man working diligently by the light of the desklamp. Outside there may be a like intelligence, somewhere remote and abstracted, some entity longing for contact, while for now he operated in a vacuum of soul. Somewhere out there beyond the dark curtains of night there was a like soul.

But for now, all he did, he did for Company.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

JANUARY 20, 2019

DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS

This week's image is of a dumpster sitting in the lot of the County Fire Department in Woodacre and is a poignant memento mori with xmas trees. Woodacre FD is the main call center for Marin and also is the place where a lot of the heavy equipment for the County is housed.

The song "Day after Christmas" by Matthew West begins as follows:

Here comes the letdown Christmas is over
Here comes the meltdown, there goes the cheer
But before we have a breakdown, let us remember
The light of the world is still here


CH. CH. CH. CHANGES

As you will notice the masthead has changed. This is to reflect the shift enforced by our response to illegal activity practiced by the Taikeff Gang in Alameda, which activity was not moderated, controlled, or otherwise deflected by the inadequate police force of the Island.

We are now Sylvan Acres although the primary url will remain Island-life.net and there will always be a place for Island adventures, as we retain a love for many of our characters who remain there, despite the horrible Rent Crisis.

THAT DEVIL MUSIC

So anyway, Bobby Blunt, aka to associates as "Baby Bobby", has gotten into a terrible wax with his neighbors over building a wall between his property. Baby Bobby wants a wall because the skateboarders keep cutting across the far corner to get to the Griddle out in the West End and his house has been broken into several times.

The presence White Supremacy and Dixie flags in his windows may have had something to do with the latter.

The hitch is that BB wants his neighbors to pay for the wall, a reinforced concrete construction some 20 feet high and topped with rollers and barbed wire like was employed for the Berlin Wall that was so successful back in the day.

When the City refused permits for such construction (a neighbor called Building and Planning, who sent inspector Chuck Schaefer) Bobby acted as mature as he usually does when frustrated. He threw a tantrum and began rolling on the ground and then parked his 3 ton grader across the entrance to the City Hall parkinglot, thus obstructing City Government and trapping Councilperson Nancy Pelotron's car inside the lot.

The Police Department did what they usually do, they booted the offending vehicle when they found there was no tow truck available that could move the thing and Officer Popinjay went to speak with the man.

"Now Bobby, please stop blocking the Government," said the officer.

"I WANT MY WALL AND I AM PREPARED TO BLOCK GOVERNMENT FOR MONTHS. FOR YEARS EVEN! AND FURTHERMORE I AM GOING TO HOLD MY BREATH UNTIL I TURN BLUE!"

"Hold your breath, I do not care, but people are suffering. Mrs. Grimoire cannot get to the restroom. We can't get equipment to tow this thing for a week; all the big haulers are up in Butte County right now."

"I AM THE ONLY PERSON WHO CAN SOLVE ALL THE PROBLEMS. I WANT MY BIG BEAUTIFUL WALL AND I WANT IT NOW. THOSE MEXICANS CAN PAY FOR IT, TOO!"

"I was born in this country, as was my father," Mr. Oliveira said. "And my grandfather came from Venezuela, not Mexico."

"SAME DIFFERENCE!", shouted Baby Bobby.

"Ahhh, tu ese loco y sucio!" said Mr. Oliveira.

And so it went, degenerating into an atavistic melee of recriminations and epithets until Officer Popinjay stomped away in disgust.

On the weekend before Martin Luther King's birthday, Pahrump and Little Adam planned to take a walk up White's Hill, but the heavens opened up and they took the bus to Fairfax where the Scoop had opened up after the holidays. The Scoop had been serving home-made ice cream since the 1960's under the paper mache cow and it was the best ice cream in the entire Bay Area. There were only a few customers on that cold, rainy day, so Pahrump and Adam sat inside and ate their lavendar mint ice cream while watching people hurry by in the period downpours.

"You remember that Brother, Mr. King?" Adam asked Pahrump.

"'deed I do," Pahrump said. "Those were mighty days."

"What was he like?"

Pahrump thought for a bit, licking his spoon.

"Well, he was a hero who did not want to be a hero. He was a man of god, but not a man of doctrine. He led millions, but avoided pride. And I am afraid we shall not see his like again."

"He do much for your people?"

"Who? People on the Rez? Pyramid Lake?"

"All the Indians."

"My friend, anybody who speaks out against injustice and in the name of love speaks for all men, all peoples. Red, Black, White and Yellow. Nobody is free until the last slave walks in the sun."

And so the two sat there, the Native American and the young Black man, watching as all the White people rushed by outside the windows.

On the Island there was a Block Party held on Grand Street and everybody came except for Mr. Howitzer who ordered Dodd to close drapes as Mrs. Stinson stepped to the middle of the road where the yellow lines were and shook the hand of Luther, owner of the Pampered Pup, for it was symbolic in that each remembered back in the day when a Black was not allowed to cross Grand Street to the East End. If anyone did so, if only to go to the Paramount for a movie, the police would collect them and bring them back to the West End. And so it had been for years until the days of the Civil Rights Movement and Rev. Martin Luther King.

The surviving members of the band The Monkey Spankers kicked up and Luther danced in the street with Jacqueline until another rain squall hit and the children scattered around them like multicolored petals from a flower bouquet to the tents. Yes there is much work still to be done, but much work had been done already and at the cost of much blood. Much by a man who had been afraid of death, but not afraid of becoming a martyr.

...

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 


JANUARY 6, 2019

LET IT RAIN, LET IT POUR, LET IT RAIN A WHOLE LOT MORE

The rains have returned to the Golden State, as some people have noticed. Howard reported two feet of powder at Mammoth from the more recent storm and more on the way.

This shot is of the bridgeway to the Ross Valley Fire Department in San Anselmo. During the summer months this creek runs about six inches deep at the most and there is over 12-15 feet of clearance from the bottom to the top of the banks there.

WELCOME BACK MY FRIENDS TO THE SHOW THAT NEVER ENDS

Well it has been twenty years since we began this minor enterprise. Over twenty years of Island Life issues written each week, 52 issues a year, each issue containing concert reviews, perusals of the newspapers of the world, multimedia wretchedness, reportage on fires, rental crisis, halloween decorations, local politics, disastrous web design featuring hideously bad floating radios, and Poodleshoot satires.

Probably if any of us had figured out how to do this thing properly, we would have retired long ago, but, no, we are still figuring things out. Each issue, retained, is a micro-slice of What is Going On around here, and so when we look back, we see we have a bit of Bay Area history preserved. As well as some national items. The search for Weapons of Mass Doo Doo, in the form of Poodle excrement in Newark, seems pointed and relevant in terms of the collection of political lies which have cost all of us so much in real life.

Our motto comes from the plaque that still adorns the Berlin synagogue that was located in former East Berlin: "Never Forget."

As we march with sadly sure and inevitable steps towards another totalitarianism of peculularly American flavor, hearing talk of imposed State of Emergency actions that we have seen enacted in so many totalitarian states in the past, it remains up to some of us to preserve some memory of when things were fresh and green and full of hope and Democracy was not a foolish word stretched this way and that by those who insist the nation is a Republic and NOTHING ELSE.

We should have retired our tired old bones long ago, but now in this dangerous age it seems to us to be all that more important to carry on the momentum of dissent, of real freedom concepts, of true non-slavish patriotism and a love of Country not bound to ideology like staves around the handle of an ax.

The Editor attended a holiday party where editors of the National Lampoon and Harvard Magazine were there talking about their collaboration called American Bystander, an illustrated magazine devoid of advertising. It is a challenging work and worthy of checking out. When we see such things in production, we have some hope for the generations to come that will inherit the products of our misguided dementias, such as that clown with the comb-over now infesting the White House with his twittering.

There may be hope for the American experiment yet.

NOTHING CHANGES ON NEW YEARS DAY

So anyway, Pastor Nyquist dropped in on Father Danyluk as part of what has become an interdenominational tradition for NYE. Several years ago the two had struck up aquaintance during their respective sermon walks, for the Father had been in the habit of strolling the block clockwise, starting from the door of the rectory, and in so doing cogitate the themes to be discussed on the next Sermon. The Pastor of the Lutheran church had taken, as was his nature, to walking from his door kitty corner the Catholic rectory, anticlockwise and so the two were bound to meet at least once a week for at least a few moments.

It was in that year of torrential rains in which the umbrellas of both men of the cloth had failed and they had taken refuge together underneath the bustop overhang that the two had developed their deep friendship.

The two gentlemen of the Cloth sat and sipped brandy culled from the extensive Catholic cellars while discussing, politely, issues of transubstantiation, divinity, saints and sainthood, whether the clippings gathered by the barber of Christ should be sanctified, if found, and other things all groovy and important to men of spiritual occupation.

Ms. Morales and Mr. Sanchez shared a quiet bottle of champagne in their 2nd floor flat on Santa Clara as the pop bottles went fizz and exploded. Sgt Rumsbum marched around the premises at the Lunatic Asylum of St. Charles to make sure no one went up on the roof and as soon as he retired a number of residents promptly went up there at midnight to look at all the fireworks going off down the estuary to San Leandro.

The Old Same Place Bar was rocking with canned music from the jukebox, on account of Denby having left town along with most of the members of the Monkey Spankers band. Suzie wore a miniskirt with spangles and a cute sort of hat and blew streamers at the stroke of midnight with good grace while the new TV over the bar displayed the ball falling in Times Square.

Percy was there with Madeleine, who wore a hat, shoes and a faux mink stole in deference to the chilly season, but she removed the stole seductively to the tune of "You can Keep your Hat on," as the bar was rather warm and Pimenta Strife took the opportunity to grab several male crotches, eventually seizing upon one belonging to one of the Depuglia brothers, so as to infuse the New Year with sufficient spritz should that the champagne provided fail to enliven with bubbles alone.

Lionel dropped in on Jaqueline at her salon and invited her out to the Embers for dinner and some music there, and so the two star-crossed lovers managed to enjoy one another's company after Maeve energetically facilitated the arrangements before heading out to the Old Same Place Bar, where she had a long tete a tete with the Man from Minot.

Up in the north counties, where many of our old friends had taken refuge after the Night of Shattered Fires, the New Year passed quietly and with little noise. Exhuberent noise is frowned upon in Marin, as is wanton parking at will. Marin is like that.

Members of the Household gathered at Constance's place in Lagunitas where candles were lit in a ceremony celebrating the long advance of the days from the longest night through the Solstice to the return of the light. Recent deaths were recalled and recent births celebrated for when one door closes another opens and that is the way of the world. Survivors of recent cancer diagnosis and fire destruction also were celebrated, for we have also the persistence of memory and continuing life.

Occasional Quentin played with the dogs and Marlene played with the children and Andre brought his guitar and there was music and life in that place in the north woods and Denby talked about walking in darkness due to the Angry Elf gang and this new entering into the land of light and hope as new births were announced. And folks had returned to the land of their origins to pursue new families, new origins. And so there was additional hope and joy.

And so it was up in the North Counties of the Bay Area.

Down on the Island in the rectory of Our Lady of Incessant Complaint, Sister Perspecacious came into the room where the fire was become embers and laid blankets upon the snoozing forms of Pastor Nyquist and Father Danyluk, as in years past and so turned out the light as the old year fled into the shadows as the New Year ticked steadily towards the long distant dawn and the two old friends, supposed ideological enemies, snoring within a few feet of one another.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds through Fairfax and over White's Hill, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

 

DECEMBER 30, 2018

WANDER THIS WORLD

Final image for 2018 comes from Carol Balding Taylor who is an artist living in the Gold Coast area of the Island. She has been doing a photographic series called "Walking Crab Cove" and this is one of her stills.

WHATS GOING ON

Government is half shut down due to a petulant baby manchild, which is par for the course during the Trump Error. People have been collecting Area Closed signs as keepsakes and historical mememtos, thinking this sort of thing should become a rarity. As long as the GOP remains demented, we shall see this happen again, this we assure you. Like Climate change, no shift in politics or demographics will cause this to change on its own.

Around the Bay, most businesses practicing common sense have shut down during the holiday period with Xmas on a Tuesday followed by New Year's Day on a Tuesday, but some of us must soldier in to work on the Monday and the Wednesday following. Only good thing about that is the traffic is become reasonable for a brief space, and the bosses, for the most part, are off in Tenerife, checking their email on the beach.

If you do not have your NYE gig by now, have fun at home watching the ball drop.

IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER

So anyway. As this demented year sprils to a close the Editor, newly restored to his position in the relocated offices of Island-Life is wrapping things up. In this time friends flit from house to house to visit old friends and re-establish connections made solid over the years by way of marriages and births and graduations and bar mitzvahs and deaths and all sorts of dealings besides. It is a time of reconnection around here.

It has been twenty years since Island-Life launched its tiny bark on the ferocious seas of the Internet. Along the way we have encountered sea changes in historical perspective. In 1998 the most memorable events concerned the impeachment proceedings against President Bill Clinton due to his affair with Monica Lewinsky, and violent turmoil in the fragments of former Yugoslavia between Croats and Slavs.

Along the way we have seen two Presidents appointed to the job by a minority of people and seen both behave badly. We have seen the Island become increasingly uninhabitable due to the rental crisis. We have seen the Golden State beset by terrible disasters of fire. We have seen Administrations come and go, each dissatisfying the People equally in measure. And we have seen along with shameful lapses of courage by public officials, great efforts by couragous private Californians in defense of their lives and the lives of others. We have seen and reported on great change over the course of 20 years since 1998.

Since then we have reported local events and world events along a parodic vein and because of that there are some who would say what we do is all silly nonsense.

Ask Mr. Kashoggi if what he did was silly nonsense.

2019 will mark a significant number of watershed dates for world and American commemorations. It seems only yesterday that 1969 and 1949 passed as years of significance. We hope to be there with you as you remember D-Day and the last Summer of Love in the coming months.

In the crowded Household of Marlene and Andre, snores and wheezes drifted through the chill air as the main room was lit by the fading Cold Moon that was full on the 22nd.

Snarfling and snuffling, a creature appeared in the fireplace from the chimney flue to examine the dark forms huddled in sleeping bags around the place. This, clearly, was not a place to set up shop, so the creature ascended up the flue and came out on top of the house from the vent to scamper along the rooftree and find another avenue to pursue so as to establish a marsupial family.

The fogs crept through the vales of the San Geronimo Valley and residents retreated to their homes and hearths and lights were dimmed. Night crept in on silent paws and circled around the houses to lay down heavy with darkness over the windows. No sirens rent the night and no one was shot and no one was stabbed. It was a quiet night in the San Geronimo Valley. And the following day would be the last day of the terrible year that was 2018.

The sound of the train horn keened from Oaktown across the estuary and wended its way through the redwoods of Marin's well-matriculated hills and slid over the sleeping bulk of Princess Tamalpais following the old, forgotten railbeds that once led along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard to the coast, stirring the coyotes who began to howl their evensong which carried forth on the winds over White's Hill and Fairfax, ululating through Silvan Acres and the mist-shrouded niches of the San Geronimo Valley, coursing with faint gray shapes along the ridgetops through the drifts of fog to an unknown destination.

That's the way it is around the Bay. Have a great week.

 

 

 

TO REVISIT PREVIOUS ISSUES, GO TO THE ARCHIVES BELOW.

.

Another Week Passed

Archives

Top of page
Top of Page

Island Life © 1999 -


Island Life
What is Silvan Acres & Island Life?



Island Life only

☛ TEXT SIZER
smaller 100% larger


LANDSLIDE PREPAREDNESS




Island Life Archive


Books in print
and on Kindle

Mule Sonata on Kindle



Professional Services

OM logo
OM Networking


Local Event Calendar

Calendar
Selected List of local events


Back Pain

Back Pain
Living With Back Pain


Amusements


REVIEWS

Story collection
Island Stories- 2 Decades


Poodleshoot Rules
Annual Poodleshoot Rules 2017

Bang!
Past Poodleshoots


The Sierras
CAMPING IN THE HIGH SIERRA


Audio & Podcasts

NEWS FROM THE ISLAND
NYE 2013

NEWS FROM THE ISLAND
NYE 2010



Blast Off!
FLYOVER PODCAST

Part 1- Take Off

Part 2-The Red Lever


santa (21K)
2008 Holiday Podcast

Part One

Part Two


2006 Shoot
2006 Poodleshoot Audio Clip


City Arts
& Lectures

hippo (4K)
Le Hippo Enragee

smallcar (2K)
The Stealth Turn


Local People

Jim Kitson
Jim Kitson Memorial

high sierra org
Mike's Found Box of Rare Photos @ High Sierra Org

scrawl

modmuse (9K)

BLOGGING BAYPORT
Lauren Do

ALAMEDA PATCH

 

carport (9K)
The Carport Orchestra


If you got here by mistake and really want to go to Hawaii, this link will take you to an appropriate travel agency . This link is neither a paid advert nor an endorsement for any products or services.


Space available for advertising

 


music control setstats
setstats