in Wine Country
are a lot of fun, especially when they are over. Those big ones
at Moscone Center in San Francisco are especially daunting, dizzying,
discombobulating ... or something. See what I mean? They leave you
groping for the right word and never quite finding it. Anyway, when
they are over you will need a recovery plan. Part of my recovery
plan always includes a little getaway, along with a bit of the grape....
"If I had the
dough," says Arnie, "I'd follow the feng shui of alcohol. Facing
north, I'd drink aquavit or vodka. South, it'd have to be rum or
pisco, and so on with the other cardinal directions." We're
leaning against a redwood cadaver washed up on the beach, our toes
sifting through the hot sand, our eyes fixed on the sea unraveling
itself here at the continent's edge. I suppose Arnie ought to be
sipping saké, rather than the kind of white port that often includes
a packet of Kool Aid attached with a rubber band to the neck of
Is No Joke in Santa Cruz
I was in a room
filled with people wearing funny hats and Hawaiian shirts. Even
weirder was the fact that they were all holding tiny, four-stringed
guitars. No, it wasn't a dream. It was Peter Thomas' fourth annual
Ukulele Party. Thomas
has a Ukulele Party every year, right before the International Ukulele
Convention in Hayward, California. Uke aficionados from God knows
where gather in Thomas' Santa Cruz beach house on their way to the
convention, and being the less conventional of their breed, revel
until the early morning....
Coastal Getaway Now?
then over the Golden Gate, it is nice to be close to the coast.
But in Santa Rosa in the early afternoon traffic is backed up on
the two-lane highway and it is downright hot. It has been early
Summer in San Francisco and it is not any cooler to the north. The
Quick Stop in Cloverdale is crowded as usual but after taking the
turnoff to Mendocino and the coast, traffic thins out. Except for
a hippy in an old blue pickup who is following dangerously closedoesn't
he know hippies are supposed to be mellow?I am beginning to
Waves for Clean Oceans
on a foggy Sunday morning at San Francisco Aquatic Park more than
60 surfers have shimmied into their wetsuits and brought their surfboards
to the water's edge. But what drives them to the water's edge this
morning isn't the desire to catch a wave. It's the desire to take
part in the Annual Clean Water Day Paddlea symbolic act of
concern for the ocean, earth and environment. Every
year, members of the Surfrider Foundation across the nation ...
answer the phone, my hands stinging. With a pair of snips that could
be a lot sharper, I've been doing battle with the blackberries in
my backyard, attempting to foil their schemes for world conquest.
muffled sob lands in my ear. The sob started in a smashed heart
in a no-doubt scrungy apartment in the East Village. It has crossed
rivers and mountains and all the rocking wheat of Kansas to get
here .... "I'm
so happy you're home. I need to talk or I'll die ....