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My father loved Christmas, even though he was a Jewish communist. [SEE PAGE 22]


Single in the Suburbs

Holidays in the Sun

The Sweetwater lowdown

Nikki got run over by a ‘Grandma’

Santa—the whole shocking story!




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›› STAFF ‘I’m angry!!’ Don’t miss our guide to the season’s hottest toys, p. 24. 7 8 9 11 12 13 19 20 22 27 28 29 31 32 36 38 39

Letters Upfront That TV Guy/Trivia CafĂŠ/ Heroes & Zeros Upfront 2 Single in the Suburbs Feature Home + Garden Design Open Homes Holidays in the Sun Food & Drink/All in Good Taste Music The Beat/Theater Movies Sundial ClassiďŹ eds Horoscope Advice Goddess

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Embarcadero Media. (USPS 454-630) Published weekly on Fridays. Distributed free at more than 400 locations throughout Marin County. Adjudicated a newspaper of General Circulation. Home delivery in Marin available by subscription: $5/month on your credit card or $60 for one year, cash or check. No person may, without the permission of the Pacific Sun, take more than one copy of each Pacific Sun weekly issue. Entire contents of this publication Copyright Š2010 Embarcadero Media ISSN; 0048-2641. All rights reserved. Unsolicited manuscripts must be submitted with a stamped self-addressed envelope.

PUBLISHER - Gina Channell-Allen (x315) EDITORIAL Editor: Jason Walsh (x316); Movie Page Editor: Matt Stafford (x320); Copy Editor: Carol Inkellis (x317); Staff Writer: Dani Burlison (x319); Calendar Editor: Anne Schrager (x330); Proofreader: Julie Vader CONTRIBUTORS Lee Brady, Greg Cahill, Pat Fusco, Richard Gould, Marc Hershon, Richard P. Hinkle, Brooke Jackson, Brenda K. Kinsel, Jill Kramer, Lois MacLean, Joel Orff, Rick Polito, Renata Polt, Peter Seidman, Nikki Silverstein, Annie Spiegelman, David Templeton, Barry Willis. Books Editor: Elizabeth Stewart (x326) ADVERTISING Advertising Director: Linda Black (x306) Display Sales: Bob Correa (x311), Linda Curry (x309), Richard Winston (x312) Inside Sales: Helen Hammond (x303); Traffic Coordinator: Julie Baiocchi (x302); Courier: Gillian Coder DESIGN AND PRODUCTION Art Director/Production Manager: Beth Allen (x335); Graphic Designers: Gwen Aguilar (x336), Michelle Palmer (x321); Missy Reynolds, Gabe Lieb (x308) Graphic Design & Video: Brindl Markle (x337) ADMINISTRATION Business Administrator: Cynthia Saechao (x331) Administrative Assistant: Julie Baiocchi (x301) Circulation Manager: Bob Lampkin (x340) PRINTING: Paradise Post, Paradise, CA

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›› LETTERS The purple rose of chiro Amazing... I write a letter to the editor [“Suicide Solution: Chiropractic,” Nov. 19] in response to the Sun’s cover story on teen suicide [“The Kids Aren’t All Right,” Nov. 5], bringing out the well-established fact that the very antidepressants used to treat depression are known to increase suicide in teenagers and young adults, in the hope that that knowledge may save a young life or two. Instead of simple agreement or disagreement, or some semblance of scientific/ academic discourse, I am met by a crude, baseless tirade by letter writer LR Waldman [“Are You Subluxed to the Challenge?” Dec. 3], attacking not only myself, but my entire profession. Racist-like hate is the tool of Dr. Waldman, while his goal is mindless defense of the status quo of the PharmaceuticalMedical-Governmental Complex. Dr. Waldman dares call chiropractic a “neuromuscular scam.” Really? How about medical professionals, all very respectable, in their white coats, making psychiatric diagnoses with the vaguest of parameters, prescribing medications that cause the death of children? What kind of scam is that? So, a neurophysiology professor from a community college attacks me in the realm of real-life clinical applications? That is truly funny. Yes, Dr. Waldman, chiropractors do study neurochemistry, as well as neurophysiology and neuroanatomy. It is pathetic when a man of some education is so bereft of wisdom. It is one thing to know facts. It is quite another to have the wisdom to put them into practical context. It is yet a higher step to put those facts, and that wisdom, into a system that actually improves the lives of one’s fellow

human beings. This is what chiropractic has done. This is what at least parts of medicine, particularly pediatrics and psychiatry, have failed at. So, Dr. Waldman, you want a “challenge”? How about a public debate? Perhaps the Pacific Sun would like to sponsor that. You feel lucky today? Well, do ya, professor? PS: I admit it. I am “aggressive” with the truth.



Prop. 8 judge overrules ‘conflict of interest’ claim Judge Stephen Reinhardt, known as the lion of the left, has dismissed claims that he should step down from a three-judge federal appeals panel that will hear arguments in Cali... Upfront: The kooks vs. the peepers Fairfax residents and Town Council members made it clear Tuesday night they will do whatever it takes—including acts of civil disobedience—to enforce the town’s mo...

Don Harte, Corte Madera

Novatoans’d be offended, if they understood your big words... I thought Jason Walsh’s “editor’s comment” about the proposed San Rafael Target [“Expect the Unexpected,” Dec. 3] was It’s like crossing the MasonDixon line. an interesting article; he raised some valid concerns. That being said, and this coming from someone who grew up in San Rafael, comparing Novato to central and southern Marin is difficult. Novato has always been looked at as Marin’s “red-headed stepchild.” Novato was more conservative than the rest of Marin, and it probably still is, to a lesser extent. Many Marin residents feel that towns further south are more sophisticated, and I believe many of these folks will choose to do their upscale shopping along the Sausalito-San Rafael corridor, rather than along Grant Avenue. Many of these folks will choose to go up to Vintage Oaks for discount goods at Target, Costco, etc., and never head west

Your soapbox is waiting at ›› into downtown Novato. While I must say I understand that Target may not be positive for San Rafael, I don’t feel using Novato’s Target is applicable in the San Rafael-Target debate. Bob Igram, Petaluma

No man is an island—especially me I enjoyed being the subject of your article [“Between the Rock and a Hard Place,” Nov. 19] about the anniversary of the Indian occupation of Alcatraz and the annual Sunrise Ceremony that takes place each We reiterate: Thanksgiving; This movie has nothing to do Dani Burlison did with the destruction of Western Hemisphere a great job. I am indigenous cultures. guessing that it wasn’t Dani who picked the headline on the cover, “Island of Lost Souls.” I have to say that the title put a bad taste in my mouth. There was nothing about lost souls in the article. Are the people going out to participate in this event lost souls? Am I the lost soul? Were the Indians occupying Alcatraz lost souls? People going out there these days know who they are and where they stand. Mostly it feels as though I am the one being called a “lost soul” since I am the lead character in the article. I don’t feel like a lost soul. In fact, most of the time I feel like I am one of the few people who knows where I am and everyone else is lost. Edward Willie

Editor’s note: Thanks for writing, Edward. We certainly didn’t intend to suggest that anyone in the article was a “lost soul,” but rather it was in reference to American Indians’ centuries-long search for justice in a homeland that was taken from them by European settlers—which, I believe, was one of the points of the Indian occupation of Alcatraz 40 years ago. Also, it’s the name of a cool 1933 movie starring Bela Lugosi and Charles Laughton whose plot, we should probably point out, bears no relation to the plight of the Native Americans.

Too many kooks in the kitchen Thanks for covering the Fairfax meeting with representatives from PG&E [“The Kooks vs. the Peepers,” Dec. 3]. The Ronnie Cohen article, however, has a rather puzzling headline, “The Kooks vs. the Peepers.” Actually, it should be more like “Fairfax vs. the Kooks and the Peepers,” since the kooks in this case are the mouthpieces for the corporation. PG&E has a long history of duplicity. After poisoning the water in a Southern California town, the utility got caught and was sued, resulting in the Erin Brockovich story and the court order that it clean up a then-2.5 square mile plume. That was 14 years ago. Now we find out that the plume has actually expanded to 4 square miles and that the toxins have penetrated the lower aquifer. This is the same bunch who, several years back, passed their profits to a parent corporation, voted their executives fat bonuses, then declared bankruptcy. Yesterday, despite concerns about safety expressed by a majority of the commission members, the CPUC voted 4-1 to let PG&E go ahead with its plans. That should make it quite clear that higher governmental agencies and oversight panels can’t be trusted to protect us, even when there’s substantial reason to question the safety of the oxymoronic “smart meters.” It’s up to us to stand up for our own communities. I am proud to live in a town whose elected representatives have the guts to do what’s right. Richard Raznikov, Fairfax

Editor’s note: Thanks for writing, Richard. We normally wouldn’t refer to such admirable towns as yours as “kooks,” but in the story your own Town Council member David Weinsoff used the term to describe Fairfax. Given Fairfax’s reputation of having a good sense of humor about itself, and the fact that it made a good headline to the story, we went with it. Plus, the Fairfaxians we have on staff didn’t seem to mind. Though they may have been too busy reading their star charts to notice.

Put your stamp on the letters to the editor at ›› DECEMBER 10 - DECEMBER 16, 2010 PACIFIC SUN 7


Sweetwater’s bittersweet ballad Steeres still hoping to ‘get the band back together’ at 32 Miller by Pe t e r S e i d m a n


ecky and Thom Steere were on their way to reopening the Sweetwater. Then everything fell apart. There was a brief moment of joy for music lovers in 2008 when a banner appeared in front of 32 Miller Avenue in Mill Valley, the former site of Greenwood, a gift and home furnishings store. But the banner disappeared and a “For Lease” sign displaced it, along with the hopes of music lovers who thought the long saga of Sweetwater’s resurrection was coming to a happy conclusion. Some of the story went public, but much of it has remained under wraps. It’s a story that has left the Steeres deep in debt and wondering what happened and why an absentee landlord—whom they have never seen— spiked a lease deal that would have resulted in music at 32 Miller. The Steeres bought Sweetwater in 1998 from former owner Jeannie Patterson. The music club, at 153 Throckmorton Avenue, was a Mill Valley institution. Musicians from all over the known (and sometimes unknown) music world came to perform. Its stature grew, but it struggled financially. When the Steeres took over, it was on a month-to-month arrangement with the Aversa family, who operate La Ginestra, the Italian restaurant next door. The Aversas agreed to a new five-year lease. That lease expired in 2003, and the arrangement back to a month-to-month, along

with a rent increase. The Steeres had put $90,000 into the building, says Becky. Even so, it was starting to deteriorate. Getting investors to contribute funds for a rehabilitation project while Sweetwater was on a month-to-month wasn’t realistic. But the Aversas didn’t budge. The Sweetwater was “in dire need of work,” says Thom. The Steeres began looking for a new site. “Ideally, we didn’t want to leave,” says Becky, “because there was history there.” But in September 2007, Sweetwater hosted its last shows. “The funny thing,” says Becky, “is that we had been having problems with the plumbing, but that [last] week it was like the building knew we were leaving. The bathrooms went completely out, and we had to have Porta Potties. The beer taps went out. The sound system went out. Everything went out. But we pulled off the last two shows, and we shut down.” It’s not easy finding a home for a music club. “We wanted to stay in town, but places are far and few between.” says Thom. Then came 32 Miller. “It just made sense to us.” The site had been for rent for about six months. “Going in there you couldn’t imagine a nightclub, but I had this vision.” They had the property evaluated to determine its suitability and determined it “would need some engineering work, some redesign,” says Thom. But things looked good, including cooperation from City Hall. There was one odd thing the 10 >

›› NEWSGRAMS Target vote postponed The San Rafael City Council closed the register on any decisions regarding a possible San Rafael Target superstore Monday night, as hundreds of Marinites crowded the council chambers to weigh in on the controversial proposal. The council postponed its vote on whether to approve construction of a 137,000-square-foot Target at the Shoreline Center in east San Rafael to Dec. 20.The San Rafael Planning Commission last month approved the project in a 5-2 vote. Local small business owners and neighboring chambers of commerce in San Anselmo and Fairfax have come out in vocal opposition to the San Rafael Target, charging that such an all-purpose mega retailer and grocer would sound a death knell for many struggling businesses in the community. Huffman calls for SmartMeter‘opt out’ Countywide outrage over the forced installation of PG&E’s radio-frequency-emitting SmartMeters has propelled state Assemblyman Jared Huffman to introduce a bill that would provide an“opt out”alternative for customers. Huffman’s bill, AB 37, directs the California Public Utilities Commission to offer the opt-out for customers who do not wish to have a wireless SmartMeter installed at their home or business and to require utilities to make this option available using wired technology that provides equivalent smart grid reliability and efficiency. PG&E officials say the meters are necessary to develop a“smart grid,”which can relay information to customers regarding their energy use. But consumer concern about the potential health effects of SmartMeters and how the information gathered will be used has turned the installation of the meters into the latest public-relations gaffe for the utility. In addition to the“opt out,” AB 37 also directs the utility to disclose information about the SmartMeters to consumers including, according to a press release issued by Huffman’s office, the timing, magnitude, frequency and duration of radio frequency emissions“so that individual consumers can make informed decisions.”The bill calls for the CPUC to suspend deployment of SmartMeters until this opt-out option is made available. CPUC OKs desal in Monterey In a move that will be watched very closely by Marinites divided over the efficacy of a county desalination plant, the California Public Utilities Commission authorized plans this week to develop a regional desalination project just north of Monterey. The $400 million desal project—which uses reverse osmosis to make saltwater potable for human use—is expected to produce 10 million gallons of water daily, according to officials from project developers California American Water.They say the plant will be completed in 2015. Novato favorite flips back to omelets A Novato restaurant is leaping out of the fryer and back into the frying pan, as the Old Town Bistro is reverting to its original incarnation as the Golden Egg Omelet House. Proprietors of the 33-year-old establishment, Jose Martinez and Surinder Sroa, changed the name and the breakfast-themed ambience of the Grant Avenue favorite about a year ago in an effort to capture more of a lunch and dinnertime feel. But Old Town Bistro failed to catch on in Novato, so it’s back to the“Omelet House”and its storied menu of 101 types of omelet. Longtime regulars of the Omelet House no doubt feel this is eggs-actly the right decision. The Golden Egg Omelet House is open seven days a week from 7am to 3pm. Check out www. or call 415/897-7707.—Jason Walsh EXTRA! EXTRA! Post your Marin news at ››


FRIDAY, DEC. 10 Space Chimps A squad of space chimps travels through a black hole, which, from what we could tell, is where all the originality and humor ended up. (2008) FX. 8pm. Raiders of the Lost Ark A charismatic archaeologist makes a career out of robbing indigenous people of their precious cultural artifacts. (1981) USA Network. 8pm.

by Rick Polito

Prancer A young girl convinces herself that the injured reindeer she found in the forest is part of Santa’s sleigh team. She’s disappointed when his “reindeer games” consist primarily of chewing his cud. (1989) AMC. 10:30pm.

The Santa Clause Tim Allen plays a busi- TUESDAY, DEC. 14 I Want a Dog for nessman who is inadvertently recruited Christmas, Charlie Brown When Lucy and Linus decide they need a dog, in walks to be the next Santa. He Snoopy’s cousin, who starts growing a big belly looks remarkably like and a great white beard Snoopy but has a musand a hearty ho ho ho. tache. Also released as We thought he’d have to “I Have An Idea to Sell develop a drinking probMore Stuffed Snoopys, lem and a criminal record Charlie Brown.” CBS. too, but that’s only if he 8pm. wants to be a departBridalplasty A reality ment store Santa. (1994) show about brides-toABC Family. 8pm. be competing for free CSI: NY This week the plastic surgery proteam investigates a cedures. Most brides century-old corpse. They The scurrilous white devil makes his getaway, wait to show their true can tell it’s old because Friday at 8. face until after the the remains are in blackhoneymoon, but these and-white with old-timey music. CBS. 9pm. women won’t even have a true face to show. E! 9pm. SATURDAY, DEC. 11 It’s a Wonderful Life

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 15 Human Target This week the team helps a victim of “retrograde amnesia, ”We can’t remember what that means. Fox. 8pm. The Santa Incident A family helps out the jolly old elf after the government shoots down his sleigh.We didn’t know Santa was on the no-fly list, but it makes sense. His bag won’t fit through the X-ray machine. (2010) Hallmark. 8pm. Confessions of Rock’s Greatest Groupies Wow! She wasn’t 18! And that wasn’t “just a cold sore.” VH1. 8:30pm.

S U N D AY, D E C . 1 2 THURSDAY, DEC.16 Extreme Makeover: Bones A man in a Home Edition This week Santa suit is blown up. they are remodeling a Some people really house for a cheerleading The desperate, bitter holiday classic. The desperate, bitter holiday classic. know how to deck the coach. Now he’ll have a Saturday, Saturday, 8pm. 8pm. halls. Fox. 9pm. place with high ceilings A Diva’s Christmas for the vaulting routines. Carol Vanessa Williams and Chilli from TLC And mirrors on the floor. ABC. 8pm. star in this modern retelling of the classic Sarah Palin’s Alaska Kate Gosselin visits Sarah Palin, providing the kind of meeting of Dickens fable. Williams plays a superstar the minds rarely seen outside of the Cartoon singer who is visited by the Ghost of Embarrassing Fashion Statements Past, the Network. TLC. 9pm. Ghost of Bad Videos Present and the Ghost of Rehab Yet to Be. (2000) Lifetime. 9pm. ✹ MONDAY, DEC. 13 Track Me If You Can A Critique That TV Guy at series about what it would take to disappear from society. Step 1: Stop updating your Facebook status. Nobody cares if you’re at more TurnTurn on on more TV TV GuyGuy at at Starbucks. Discovery Channel. 8pm. ›› ››

by Howard Rachelson

1. Santa Claus, always on the last float and the biggest draw in Leesburg, Georgia’s Spirit of Christmas Parade, faced competition from the grand marshal, what 23-year-old Leesburg hero and San Francisco Giants baseball star? 2. From what language do the signs of the zodiac get their names? 3. What is the maximum number of characters allowed in a normal Twitter tweet? 4. In 1456, Scottish King James II banned the playing of what two increasingly popular sports because they were distracting people from training in archery? 5. What popular 1995 chick flick contained this encounter: Father:“Do you know what time it is?” Daughter:“A watch doesn’t really go with this outfit, daddy.” 6a. What country shares the longest land border with France, 388 miles? 6b. What nation shares the shortest land border with France, 2.7 miles? 7. The shell of what edible sea animal has a colorful, pearly interior? 8. Pictured below: Although he died in 2004, Swedish writer Stieg Larsson is hotter than ever. Three of his novels, all beginning with The Girl ..., have become bestsellers, and were all turned into movies. What are their titles?




9. The first voters in the world to do this were in Ceylon in 1960; India followed in 1966, Israel in 1969 and Argentina in 1974. That is, first to do what? 10. Each of these word groups shares one word in common. Can you identify it? 10a. Christmas, New Year’s, Eden (three letters) 10b. Grape, ivy, Hollywood (four letters) 10c. Future, determination, Shakespeare (four letters) BONUS: Arrange six letters in the word Netherlands to form the name of a capital city in Asia. Howard Rachelson, Marin’s Master of Trivia, invites you to a live Team Trivia Contest every Wednesday at 7:30pm at the Broken Drum in San Rafael. Send your best trivia question (with your name and hometown) to; if your question is used in the ‘Pacific Sun,’ we’ll give you credit!

± Usually our Hero is a Marinite, however this week we chose someone who never lived here—activist and author Elizabeth Edwards. Edwards, who inspired us as we watched her battle breast cancer, died on Dec. 7 at age 61, after losing her six-year fight against the terrible disease. With Marin County’s high incidence of breast cancer, women here identified with Edwards’ struggle and felt encouraged by her frank discussion about the illness. Admitting she skipped some routine mammograms and discovered her own lump while showering, she reminded us of the importance of selfexams and checkups. Elizabeth Edwards is a true Hero who lived with grace and died with dignity. (Marin General Hospital offers low-cost mammograms for women who need financial assistance. Call 415/925-6305.

Answers on page 21

² Apparently, some folks need a reminder about that thoushalt-not-steal thing. JW and JS used to bike to work at the new Whole Foods in Mill Valley. Of course they took the precaution of locking up their prized bicycles with braided chains and heavy-duty locks. JW built his bike from the frame up and JS had a friend custom-build his ride. Last week, within a 24-hour period, both young men had their bikes stolen from outside of Whole Foods. JW feels violated, but fortunately, he has a car. JS, who doesn’t have alternate wheels, is heartbroken. If you know the Zero(s) that stole a black fixed-gear bike with neon green wheels or a blue Trek with mustache handlebars, please contact the Mill Valley police.—Nikki Silverstein


“Teacher says whenever a bell rings Daddy suffers another crushing life disappointment.” (1947) NBC. 8pm. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Four children find their way through a wardrobe into a magical land of talking animals, where they meet a lion god and an evil witch who keeps Narnia frozen in endless winter. We’ve dated women like that. (2005) ABC. 8:30pm. The Flight Before Christmas A flying squirrel teaches a reindeer to fly and nobody bothers to check what the writers are smoking. (2008) CBS. 9pm.




Got a Hero or a Zero? Please send submissions to e-mail Toss roses, hurl stones with more Heroes and Zeros at ›› DECEMBER 10 - DECEMBER 16, 2010 PACIFIC SUN 9

of investor capital was insufďŹ cient. “We had six months to raise more funds. raised about $300,000 to do everything,â€? says The Steeres found a new investor who Thom. The money came from a handful of was ready to supply a bridge loan, and “he investors, including one with “very deep pock- had about $300,000 and was willing to put ets.â€? Becky says the investors never intended to it in an escrow account while we worked make money. “They did it for all the right rea- through the machinationsâ€? of the second sons—to keep Sweetwater alive.â€? But the delays round of ďŹ nancing, says Thom. during planning and construction stretched “Then we went to this fateful meeting with to August 2008, when they burned through a ďŹ nancial adviser [for the Rose Trust],â€? who, their funds. says Thom, Invoices still said everycame though, thing looked and in July good except the Steeres for one thing. had started The Rose paying rent Trust wanted on 32 Miller “an additional while it pro$440,000 in duced no an escrow revenue. account. We Yet the were so close. Steeres reThat blew evmained operything up.â€? timistic. “We That extra had complet- The still-vacant would-be home to Sweetwater at 32 Miller Ave. requirement, ed all the arnotes Becky, chitectural work, all the engineering work, we never was part of any [formal written] lease had our conditional use permit, all that stuff,â€? agreement. Becky and Thom had no money says Thom. The beer lines were ready to ow. for a full-time attorney, putting them at a The network lines for the club had been laid. disadvantage. “Basically, we were on the cusp,â€? says Thom. The Steeres tried to ďŹ nd someone who But they still needed to raise $300,000. The could take over the project: They apSteeres arranged with the Rose Trust to susproached more investors, explored ways pend work and pay down all the bills they had to keep Sweetwater alive as a nonproďŹ t, accrued. They had about $100,000 on deposit searched for a white knight. to cover rent, which would give them about Then, in February 2009, the rent-deposit MISSY REYNOLDS

Steeres encountered. “We have never met the landlord,â€? says Thom. The property’s legal owner is the Belinda Rose Trust. Belinda Rose lives on the Peninsula. All negotiations and subsequent dealings took place with lawyers, surrogates for the Rose Trust. “From what we understand,â€? says Thom, “she’s a nice lady living down there who has people managing her properties.â€? (A request for comment about this story from an attorney who represents the Rose Trust went unanswered.) At ďŹ rst, the Steeres were told that Rose didn’t want a nightclub at 32 Miller. At about that time, Marin Supervisor Charles McGlashan asked the Steeres if they could use any help persuading the Rose Trust to lease 32 Miller. “Shortly thereafter, they said they understood and they wanted to work with us,â€? says Thom. “They said they understood that we are part of the fabric of the community.â€? The Steeres and the Rose Trust signed a lease agreement, which included the stipulation that the landlord would refurbish 32 Miller to bring it up to code. The Steeres would oversee work involved to create a club inside the structure. They got engineering studies and architectural drawings. Then the landlord ran into “all kinds of problemsâ€? while working on the renovation, says Thom. It didn’t help that in 2008, FEMA rules took effect that mandate new guidelines for properties in a ood plain. “The landlord had a bigger ticket, and we had a big delay in our construction,â€? says Thom. “The architectural and attorneys’ fees just skyrocketed.â€? The Steeres realized that their initial chunk

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money was depleted. The Rose Trust offered the Steeres an opportunity to sign a release that would have absolved them of the responsibility for paying the rent—if they relinquished all rights to the lease. But after hearing legal advice that the lease was all they had as a future asset, the Steeres declined. “We thought we would hold on and try to ďŹ nd a way to make the landlord whole,â€? says Thom. That started a downward spiral. The Rose Trust ďŹ led two lawsuits against the Steeres. One charged them with breach of contract; the other was a notice of unlawful detainer, demanding that they leave 32 Miller. “We received a summons,â€? says Becky. “You receive endless copies upon copies via certiďŹ ed mail, FedEx and summons personnel; we literally have boxes and boxes of them. And they all look exactly the same. Thom received them at Autodesk,â€? where he works. Becky says she went to Superior Court at the Civic Center to reply to what she thought was one summons. Superior Court personnel said she would receive an answer to her reply. Then, an attorney representing the Rose Trust sent her a copy of a letter sent to the court saying the Rose Trust had dropped the charges and the case was dismissed. Becky says she and Thom thought that meant the Rose Trust acknowledged that the Steeres were working toward a resolution and hope was not lost. “Then, all of a sudden, we received a letter in the mail—not certiďŹ ed—that said we were being sued for $660,000,â€? says Becky. “I was like, what? How could this happen? We ďŹ led our response and we got a release.â€?

At that point the Steeres found a pro bono lawyer who helped them determine that the Rose Trust had filed two lawsuits, but the Steeres had responded to just one. The suit for breach of contract remained alive and resulted in the $660,000 claim because the Steeres had failed to reply to the lawsuit or show up for a court date. The lack of comprehensive legal representation had led them into a sticky thicket. To make matters worse, the Steeres had agreed to a personal guarantee when they originally negotiated the lease, meaning they are on the hook for the full amount. Thom’s wages were attached. They borrowed money to pay the mortgage on their home. And they still searched for investors to assume the role of benefactor. If they could find someone to take over the project and, as Thom says, “make the landlord whole,” there still might be a positive resolution—and Sweetwater could reopen. A good prospect came forward who has solid investment credentials and a track record in Mill Valley—and who offered to “put a large sum into an escrow account,” says Becky. But the Rose Trust surrogates insisted that the new investor sign a personal guarantee. Given what has happened to the Steeres, says Becky, “no one in their right mind would sign a personal guarantee.” And that leaves the Steeres still searching to find a way to “make the landlord whole” and release them from the crushing debt—and to reopen Sweetwater. And that investor is still waiting in the wings, ready to enter the picture if the Rose Trust will loosen its demands for a personal guarantee. Thom says that’s a reasonable request because Sweetwater will be able to cover expenses and the investor has a solid background. “We just want [Belinda] Rose to understand that we want to make her whole and resurrect Sweetwater, whether or not we are involved.” Despite the setbacks and pitfalls, the Steeres remain optimistic. “It flies in the face of facts,” says Thom with a genuine laugh. “I’m always an optimist,” says Becky. “The glass is always half full.” The interaction with musicians is the heart of the Sweetwater experience for Becky and Thom. “They always said it was their favorite place to play. We treated them with kindness, a hot catered meal, a nap, whatever they needed. We made them feel at home.” “If there’s someone out there who thinks they can ‘get the band back together’ and rock the proverbial house, let them speak now... or the drummer dies,” says Thom, “and we file this in the back room of Mill Valley’s art and music heritage, where it will collect dust and live only in the memories of what was once and shall never be again.” ✹ The Mill Valley Planning Commission recently denied an application to open a real estate office at 32 Miller Ave. The property remains empty and for lease. Contact the writer at

It’s your county, speak up at ››

place. If the panel determines that Proposition 8 supporters lack standing to bring the case, it could uphold U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker’s August ruling overturnNo decision yet, but judges may lean toward marriage equality ing Proposition 8. Then, if the U.S. Supreme Court concurs that the initiative’s supporters by Ronnie Co he n lack standing, same-sex marriage could again be legal in California. Ordinarily, the governor and the attorney According to Cooper, the rational basis SAN FRANCISCO — Ann Gaffney Shores general defend voter initiatives in court. But for excluding same-gender couples from knows that only fools try to predict judicial both Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jerry Brown marriage is that they cannot naturally have rulings. But the Corte Madera lawyer left this refused to defend the same-sex marriage ban. children—the purpose, he says, of marriage. week’s federal appeals court hearing on the All three judges expressed concern that no A gay couple who live in Burbank and constitutionality of a voter-approved samegovernment official came forward to defend would like to wed before having children and a sex marriage ban optimistic that marriage Proposition 8. The last time a California lesbian couple who live in Berkeley with their equality moved a legal step closer to becomattorney general refused to defend a voter children filed the federal case against Proposiing a permanent reality in California. initiative was when a 1964 ballot proposition 8 because they want to marry. Their law“The judges are probably inclined to give tion amended the state constitution to alyers, Theodore Olson and David Boies, a powus a victory to some extent,” said Shores, who low housing discrimination. Even the panel’s erhouse legal team who opposed one another arrived with her brother and his husband for most conservative judge, N. Randy Smith, a in the 2000 Bush v. Gore battle for the presithe 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals hearing George W. Bush dency, connearly three hours before its start on Dec. 6 appointee who tend Proposiso they could get seats in the courtroom with lives in Idaho tion 8 has no marble mosaics, columns and stained-glass and was born more rational windows. “I have no doubt we will see marand educated in riage equality in my lifetime.” basis than the Utah, questioned For nearly two-and-a-half hours on anti-miscegeProposition 8’s Monday in a televised proceeding, three nation law the rational basis. black-robed judges probed lawyers on both U.S. Supreme “What is the sides about case law relating to whether voters Court struck rational basis could exclude gay men and lesbians from down in 1967 for an initiative marrying. Two of the judges posed quesin Loving v. when California tions that might have signaled their openness Virginia. They law really says to affirming an August ruling overturning also contend that homosexual Proposition 8. Voters approved the same-sex that voters had couples have marriage ban just weeks after the California no more right all the rights of Supreme Court decreed that homosexuals to amend the marriage, all the could wed in the state. More than 18,000 California rights of childsame-gender couples, including Shores’ Constitution rearing, all the brother, tied the knot while it was legal in to confine rights that others California, between June and November 2008. marriage to Prop. 8 supporters present a very different argument outside the court have?” Smith house than attorney Charles Cooper presented inside. When Charles Cooper, the lawyer defendoppositeasked Cooper. ing the ban, tried to explain to the appellate sex couples “We’re left with a word—marriage.” panel his belief that gay marriage threatens than they would to try to amend it to “You are left with a word that is essentially societal interests because children raised reinstitute school segregation. If the state an institution,” Cooper responded. “If you by single parents have “poorer outcomes,” took Cooper’s procreation argument to the exredefine the word, you change the institution. presiding Judge Stephen R. Reinhardt of treme, Olson said, “California could say, ‘We’re You cannot separate the two. The issue here is Los Angeles cut in. “That sounds like a good overpopulated, and we’ll deny people the right whether it will be redefined to be a genderless argument for prohibiting divorce,” the judge to marry.’ Proposition 8, Olson argued, vioinstitution that bears little or no relationship known as the court’s liberal lion said, eliciting lates the equal-protection and the due-process to the historic purpose of marriage.” laughter. “But how does it relate to having two clauses of the 14th Amendment. Therese Stewart, San Francisco’s chief males or two females marry each other and “What this case comes down to is that deputy city attorney, argued against Proposiraise children and form a family unit where California has built a fence around its gay and tion 8 before the appellate court on behalf children have a happy, healthy home?” lesbian citizens, and it’s built a fence around of San Francisco. “Same-sex couples do Judge Michael Daly Hawkins, an Arizonamarriage,” Olson told the randomly selected procreate,” said Stewart, a lesbian who has based Clinton appointee, asked Cooper a sethree-judge panel. “It won’t let them out of a child and lives in Novato with her wife, ries of pointed questions, which at least hinted that fence into the marriage fence. That is a Carole Scagnetti. “They don’t do it the at a belief that laws evolve with the times, and violation of the equal-protection and dueold-fashioned way.” that the time for gay men and lesbians to be process clauses.” The judges gave no indication about when able to marry may have arrived. Ann Gaffney Shores knows all about Lovthey would rule. They did discuss asking the “Could the people of California reinstiing v. Virginia. She was 10 years old in 1967, California Supreme Court to weigh in first on tute school segregation by a public vote?” when the U.S. Supreme Court outlawed racethe question of whether Proposition 8 supHawkins asked. based marriage restrictions. Shores’ Chinese porters have legal standing to have appealed “No, your honor,” Cooper replied. “That mother and white father had to consult a lawto the federal appellate court. If the California would be inconsistent with the United States yer before buying a house in Missouri seven court says they do have standing, attorney Constitution.” years earlier. If the federal Proposition 8 case Boies said he would return to the 9th Circuit “But they probably could have done that in makes it to the U.S. Supreme Court, it could to argue again that they do not. 1870 or ’80 or ’90, right?” Hawkins continued. legalize gay marriage throughout the U.S. the If the attorney general and the governor “Ah, very possibly, your honor, yes.” way Loving v. Virginia legalized interracial refuse to appeal, and no one else is allowed “How’s this different?” Hawkins asked. marriage. Both sides in the Proposition 8 case to appeal, “haven’t they effectively nullified “This is nothing like, for example, the racial have said they would appeal to the nation’s the initiative?” Judge Reinhardt asked. “If restrictions at issue in [the Supreme Court highest court if they fail to prevail in the lower the state does not defend it, that’s just tosscase] Loving, where there is simply no legiticourt. But all three judges questioned whether ing in the towel.” ✹ mate rational basis whatsoever to deny the Cooper and the Proposition 8 supporters had Contact Ronnie Cohen at right of a mixed-race couple to marry.” legal standing to appeal the matter in the first

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ate, Melissa, Nadine and I had our annual latke party last weekend. Another year, same four single women. We gathered in Kateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s kitchen, peeling pounds of potatoes and talking trash. We each confess that we still hope to meet Mr. Right by the time we have to make our obligatory appearances at our company Christmas parties. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Tick-tock,â&#x20AC;? I said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s that noise, Nikki? Your biological clock is broken by now,â&#x20AC;? Kate quipped. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Medically speaking, I can still bear a child,â&#x20AC;? I replied. â&#x20AC;&#x153;But, I was referring to ďŹ nding a date for the PaciďŹ c Sunâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas party. I have 10 days.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ask your readers to write in to win a date with you,â&#x20AC;? Nadine suggested. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want me, but every time I write about Melissa, the requests pour in,â&#x20AC;? I said. Melissa, as you may remember, is the former model who 20 years later continues to look like a model. We were worried about her last week, because she lost four front teeth in a car accident; however, her oral surgeon assured her sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll soon be good as new. Despite the toothless grin she sported for a couple of days, she still looked beautiful. I guess her long blonde mane, bright green eyes and tall, lean ďŹ gure do OK even without her dazzling smile. (Is it vain to want to come back as Melissa in my next life?) â&#x20AC;&#x153;Oh stop, Nikki. Men want to date you,â&#x20AC;? said Nadine. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Only old men. Facebook keeps serving me ads forâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;I get those,â&#x20AC;? Melissa said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Good,â&#x20AC;? I laughed. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I want you to share my misery. But, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll bet no one mistakes you for a grandmother.â&#x20AC;? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s trueâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;I look like a grandmother. Last week, I went to a Hanukkah celebration at the Osher Marin Jewish Community Center in San Rafael, where my 4-year-old cousin attends preschool. When I signed in, the woman at the table wrote out my large nametag: Nikki Silverstein, Grandmother of Noah Silverstein. Granted, it was Grandparents Day, but I saw parents too, most younger than me, but some my age. Still, the woman at the reception desk took one look at me and wrote grandmother. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll trade you,â&#x20AC;? Kate said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t had sex in a month. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d rather look like a grandmother and have sex than look young and be celibate.â&#x20AC;? Kate and her sweet boyfriend are taking a break, which may be permanent. Normally Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d be empathetic, however, she

clearly has no idea that I look like a grandmother and Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m chaste. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I hate to play the biggest loser game here, but I havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t had sex in more than six months,â&#x20AC;? I admitted. The three women stopped peeling and looked at me. I usually keep a former beau around for dinners, movies and other necessary stuff. We gals have been busy and had to cancel our last couple of gettogethers, so I guess I hadnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t ďŹ lled them in on Rick not ďŹ lling in anymore. â&#x20AC;&#x153;OK,â&#x20AC;? Kate said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You win.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;It sucks not having a man around,â&#x20AC;? Nadine said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I decided I wanted a real Christmas tree this year, so I drove to this place in Sebastopol where you cut down your own tree. The guy working there helped me. Then, I come home and have to drag this thing down the steps and into my place all by myself. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m banging it around and needles are falling everywhere.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Become a Jew. Menorahs are tidy,â&#x20AC;? I interrupted. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not the worst part,â&#x20AC;? continued Nadine. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t think about measuring. The tree was too tall. I had to shave a few inches off the bottom with a pocketknife. It took forever. Now, it doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t ďŹ t in the stand, so it leans to the right.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;You donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t need a man. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re just trouble. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll help you ďŹ x the tree,â&#x20AC;? Melissa offered. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t think men are trouble,â&#x20AC;? said Kate. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Since Timâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not around anymore, I have to catch the big, hairy spiders that keep getting in the house.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;I have spider phobia,â&#x20AC;? Melissa said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Me too. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m scared of getting spider veins,â&#x20AC;? I said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The grandmother thing again,â&#x20AC;? Kate said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Have any of you been called a grandmother?â&#x20AC;? I asked. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Seriously.â&#x20AC;? They shake their heads. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m the youngest person here and Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m the only one whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s been mistaken for a grandmother. Moreover, I havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t had sex in months. Tall Melissa steps over to hug short me. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Uh-oh, Nikk,â&#x20AC;? she said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You have gray hairs poking through near the front of your head.â&#x20AC;? Honestly, sometimes my life is a horror that never ends. I deserve to come back as Melissa. Until then, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll get my virgin hair highlighted, pray that my six-month celibacy ends soon and stuff my grandmotherly face with latkes. â&#x153;š Email:

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The inaugural Bike Locally Challenge was timed to coincide with such Marin-cycling milestones as the opening of the Cal Park Tunnel, above.

The Marin County Bicycle Coalition is daring commuters to get out of their cars was a sunny morning in New York City on the day of May 29, 1896, when a young woman, pedaling happily on her stateof-the-art Columbia Racer penny-farthing, was mowed down by an out-of-control Duryea Motor Wagon at the corner of West 74th St. by Jaso and Broadway—giving her a concussion, breaking her femur and sending the hoop-skirted maiden straight to the infirmary. It was more than just another bang-up on the mean streets of the city that never sleeps— it was history. It was the world’s first recorded automobile accident, earning driver Henry Wells, of Springfield, Mass., a prominent place in the annals of the Industrial Age—a seat behind the wheel at the symbolically significant moment when the era of the automobile zoomed wantonly ahead, no matter who or what was in the way. What seems to have been forgotten by history is the other “first” involved that day—the first cyclist plowed into by a car. For some reason that part didn’t elicit much reaction from the press. “Monstrous Horseless Carriage New, Deadly Scourge of Streets,” declared The New York Times the following day. The name Henry Wells became synonymous with the dangers of the horseless carriage—his name today pops up on any number of lists of history’s important “firsts.”


As usual, when it comes to “great moments in transportation,” the focus was all on car and driver; history has very little to say about the poor woman knocked into next week by the four-wheeled chariot. No one put her at the top of a list as the first bicyclist hit by a car—that list doesn’t exist. Only details from the standpoint of the car seem to matter, then and now. n Wals h What’s worse, the first-ever-auto-accident storyline didn’t even get the type of placement in the Times you’d expect a headline about a “deadly scourge of the streets” would deserve—it received second billing on the page to the plight of a St. Louis butcher and his wife who, while entertaining dinner guests, were caught off guard by the Great Tornado of ’96 and saved themselves when their roof caved in by hiding in an icebox. (“Their four companions were killed outright,” observed the Times.) A week later, when the newspaper celebrated the debut of the inaugural Ford Motor Company car—the Ford Quadricycle—the message was as loud and clear as an 8-cylinder engine: Any news about cars is going to be good news about cars. At least until the Edsel. Slowly but surely, times have changed since the “monstrous horseless carriage” nudged the innocuous velocipede from the national dialogue. Even in modern-day Marin, where bike culture is as in-your-face as neon-purple Lycra, the sociocultural schism between unapologetic driver and avowed cyclist is often

as wide as I imagine I look in spandex. But one organization in Marin has made it its mission to bridge the divide between bike path and carpool lane—and one dedicated bike fanatic helped develop a crafty scheme to get a handful of county lead-foots to step up to a different pedal. ●

TOM BOSS KNEW that 2010 would be an important year for cycling in Marin. With the completion of such long-awaited county commuter-cycling projects as the Lincoln Avenue Pathway and the Cal Park Tunnel on the horizon, there was never a better time to get people thinking about curbing their Michelins and hauling the Schwinn out of storage. Meanwhile, a sour economy has left the Sonoma-Marin Area Rapid Transit project facing money hurdles—a call by the Marin Grand Jury for SMART to defer the $91 million pedestrian-bike pathway has put nonmotorized transportation on the funding defensive. Boss, the 46-year-old “membership director” for the Marin County Bicycle Coalition, recognized 2010 as a key moment for the Marin cars-to-bikes movement. The SMART pedestrian-bike pathway—which would connect to all 14 stations and serve an estimated 7,000 to 10,000 people a day—was an essential element of the project; there’s a likelihood the narrowly passed Measure Q wouldn’t have

received its required two-thirds approval without the support of the cycling community. And the soon-to-be-opened Lincoln Avenue Pathway is a prime link between Terra Linda and downtown San Rafael, while the Cal Park Tunnel—a decade in the works and recently named the Bay Area’s “outstanding small project of 2010” by the American Society of Civil Engineers—will finally provide riders a safe path from east San Rafael to the Larkspur ferry. In the two years Boss has been with the MCBC, the longtime San Anselmo resident (and mastermind behind Film Night in the Park) has seen membership grow by 800 riders—but as a marketer and fundraiser for the coalition he needed a big idea to raise cycling awareness in 2010. And he had one: Give away brand-new bikes. ●

“ARE YOU BIKE CURIOUS?” read the flier Pacific Sun ad director Linda Black left on my desk one Friday last April. It was from the Bicycle Coalition—I’d received the same flier in my email. Typically with story pitches and press releases, we tend to do one of three things with them: put them aside if, for instance, they’re not of local interest or we’ve already covered them; plan for brief coverage; or plan for broader coverage of what seems to warrant a larger story. 14 > But this press release did what few DECEMBER 10- DECEMBER 16, 2010 PACIFIC SUN 13

Tensions between motorists and cyclists date back more than a century.

Lie there all day, buddy. No one cares...

The spirit-crushing finale to ‘The Bicycle Thief’—great for Italian new-realism, not so great for bike-commute inspiration.

< 13 Challenge accepted! do—it hit me on a personal level. Why... yes, I am “bike curious,” I thought. Our 7-year-old, Jack, had newly joined the ranks of the two-wheeled thrasher and, sadly, he had no one in the family with whom to thrash. Three-year-old Sam was still on a velocity-challenged tricycle and my wife and I were a nuclear family of two cars, double commutes, no bikes. We’d last had bikes briefly as newlyweds about a decade ago—bought them from Trips for Kids Re-Cyclery shop in San Rafael and had even sweated through a couple of extended tours of the San Geronimo Valley. Bikes had changed our lives! That is, until one morning when we peered outside our Novato condo to find them curiously missing, with only our bike chains remaining around the pole from where the wretched thieves had swiped them. (We’d locked them up good and safe—with the chain around the handlebars... all the reprobates had to do was lift the chains off the bikes and ride away.) Soon the pitterpatter of little feet—and the incessant wail of sleepless nights—came along and our brief foray into cycling culture was over quicker than a Lance Armstrong steroid denial. Like most people, I loved riding my bike as a kid. But as American youth inch toward that magic driving age of 16, a bike can quickly go 14 PACIFIC SUN DECEMBER 10 - DECEMBER 16, 2010

the way of the Happy Meal and pre-Revolver Beatles: strictly kids’ stuff. But now here I was, 38, and I hadn’t experienced the joys of bikes since 1988 when I left the Corte Madera DMV with license in one hand, keys to a bright orange Pontiac Ventura in the other—and side two of “Hysteria” in the tape deck. Two decades later, my bike curiosity was back. The flier from the bike coalition was announcing the inaugural session of the Bike Locally Challenge, a throwing down of the gauntlet for six Marinites to make the leap from driver’s seat to pear seat. “Have you considered riding a bike to work, or for local errands, but haven’t tried it yet?” queried the flier. “The Marin County Bicycle Coalition is launching a Bike Locally Challenge this May in an effort to get more people on bikes and to highlight the many new bicycle facilities opening in Marin County in 2010. MCBC is looking for six Marin residents to take the challenge!” Here was the deal: Six people would be chosen based on a 500-word application essay; if selected, riders would be supplied a new Globe bicycle (a brand of urban-commuter bike), with accessories, for six months. Each participant would earn “points” by riding an average of 12.5 miles per week, and documenting the experience mostly through a

Facebook page set up for the Bike Locally Challenge by MCBC. The folks who have at least 500 points at the end of the six months get to keep the bike. “With all the new facilities coming online in 2010,” says Boss, “MCBC wanted to have a campaign that would encourage people to try biking for local trips to work, school and errands. We wanted to select a diverse group of novice cyclists and help them to overcome their obstacles... [and] at the same time we would document their progress in the hopes of inspiring many more people to give biking a try for local trips.” Boss says the coalition looked at similar efforts across the country and created a sort of hybrid based on the most successful programs—the key addition to MCBC’s program, says Boss, is the requirement to earn the bikes. “No 500 points, no free bike!” he says. The 500-word essays were essentially intended for applicants to demonstrate why they were a worthy candidate to enter the contest and have a chance at earning the free bike. So I pounded out a 499-word sob story about father-son bonding, our burgled bikes from Trips for Kids, nostalgia for the lost innocence of my pre-auto youth and the need to confront climate change at even the smallest level in order to preserve the earth for future generations. But mostly I just wanted the free bike. Lo and behold, they fell for it. MCBC dug my essay and before I could say “Hello, Velo,” I was at Mike’s Bikes in San Rafael to pick up my Globe, helmet and Garmin satellitetracking device. Challenge accepted! My plan was simple. Aside from short rides around the block with the kid, the bulk of my miles would be a once-a-week Novato to San Rafael round-trip commute—from our home on San Marin Drive to the Pac Sun offices on Fourth Street. It would clear about 30 points per week (one mile equals a point) in one fell swoop and, coupled with a few Facebook posts for good measure, I’d coast all the way to the freebie wheels. ●

IT WAS ABOUT halfway through my sweat-soaked ascent up the hill at Alameda del Prado that I realized there’d be very little “coasting” involved in this bike challenge. Marin’s pretty hilly, and even the residential neighborhoods bend and gradate in ways you haven’t seen since the last time you played Twister. Not only that, but there’s very little Highway 101 room for cyclists up the vaunted Highway 101 transportation corridor—aside from a nice (and steep) bike path near the Marin IJ building, a bike ride from northern Novato to central San Rafael is in essence a ride through the streets of Novato, down Ignacio Boulevard, over Alameda del Prado, through Marinwood, past Lucas Valley, around the Northgate Mall, up Los Ranchitos, and then down into San Rafael. The only 101 corridor usage was, quite literally, smack dab on Highway 101—where cyclists are allowed to ride the shoulder southbound from the

Novato Boulevard on-ramp to the exit at Ignacio. To put it mildly, one becomes a very alert cyclist when SUVs are whizzing by at 65mph a mere eight feet to your left. Other points of interest included a daily zephyr blowing south through Novato every evening on my northbound journey home, and a game I invented called “Who Will Door Me Next?” played with frequent swerves into traffic along the apartment-heavy portion of Lincoln Avenue, where everyone parks on the street. (The Lincoln Avenue Pathway will serve as a bike-friendly parallel to this hairraising leg of the journey.) My inaugural bike-challenge commute took me a total of three-and-a-half hours to and from work. This challenge was proving to be unexpectedly challenging. After a somewhat chastening opening ride, I decided to psyche myself up with some inspiring cycling entertainment—and few things can fire up an athlete like a classic sports movie from Hollywood’s golden era. That being said, cinema history isn’t teeming with a lot of great bicycle-commuting movies. From the Fairfax Library I found Vittorio De Sica’s Academy Awardwinning 1948 film, The Bicycle Thief, and from the Point Reyes Station branch I took home Juan Antonio Bardem’s 1955 Spanish drama Death of a Cyclist. As it turned out, “inspiring” wasn’t exactly how you’d describe my impromptu bikecommute film fest. It was all I could do to keep from plummeting into abject despair after this double feature. To its credit, The Bicycle Thief is very much about the value of biking to work. Sadly, it’s also about a bike-commuting dad exposing himself as a degenerate thief before the eyes of his untilthen hero-worshipping young son—crushing all respect the boy held for the old man, and destroying any delusions he may have had toward the existence of honor and justice in the world. Good grief! But at least The Bicycle Thief was about bikes. Death of a Cyclist is the story of a pair of illicit lovers who, in the opening scene, run their car over a peasant cyclist—leaving him to die painfully on a cold country road—and spend the rest of the movie worrying how the tragedy will affect their social standing among the intelligentsia of Franco-era Spain. It seemed I would have to look beyond the era of post-World War II neo-realism to find support for my novice-cycling endeavors. ●

LUCKILY, BOSS AND the MCBC had already considered that we bike-challenge participants might need a sympathetic ear or two with whom we could detail our triumphs, obstacles and complaints about clueless drivers, wind-chill factor and the various aching cycling muscles we previously didn’t know we’d been saddled with. As part of the program, Boss arranged various “group rides” and other get-togethers with the six contestants—points were earned through attendance, but mostly it was a chance to hang out with the other novice riders and swap stories about drivers’ 16 >

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blind spots. Such outings included our initial meet-up at Mike’s Bikes in Sausalito, a ride from Moylan’s to the Novato Farmers Market (and then back to Moylan’s for beer) and an evening at Fairfax biker-hangout Iron Springs Pub. (Note recurring theme: beer.) Through these outings I got to know a little about my fellow bikementally challenged: ● Delanie Kern, 27, is a San Anselmo resident who applied for the bike challenge after realizing that, among her three New Year’s resolutions—to reduce her carbon footprint, lose 20 pounds and floss regularly— the only headway she’d made by the spring of 2010 was in the fight against gingivitis. Delanie figured that if she had a proper bike she could commute as often as possible from San Anselmo to her job in Novato—losing weight and lowering her carbon footprint in the process. “Over the past few years I have become increasingly aware of my impact on the planet,” explains Delanie, who says that she considers herself an environmentalist. “But if I am 100 percent honest,” she admits, “it has been mostly talk.” Delanie may talk the talk, but by the middle of summer she was walking the walk (cycling the cycle?)—she led all Bike Locally Challenge participants in points earned and miles rode. ● Peter Meringolo describes himself as a “normal guy.” And by that the Larkspur resident means, “40-year-old, out-of-shape, gray hair and a father of three young boys.” Of all the “challenge” participants, he started out as the most active biker in the group, riding with his kids to Little League games and occasionally to the Larkspur ferry en route to work in the city. All the same, Peter felt like a complete fraud. “I don’t wear bike shorts and a Lance Armstrong jersey. I don’t have mirror glasses. I don’t have clip-in shoes,” lamented Peter in his application essay. “Rather, I wear sneakers, some workout shorts and, usually, a ratty Notre Dame T-shirt. I do not consider myself a cyclist.” Peter confessed that watching the hordes of daily riders through Larkspur—with their “colorful jerseys and tight-fitting clothes”— gave him a serious case of Lycra envy. “Frankly, I am just jealous and intimidated,” he said. “Those people are the cyclists.”

“Riding a bike is like having sex,” began the application essay of 70-year-old Novato resident Lea Snowden—and if it were up to me she ●


should have been awarded her 500 points just for that lead sentence alone. But the other reason Lea wanted to start riding again was to relive her days as a kid growing up in the Sunset District careening down the avenues on the blue Schwinn she got from Santa. “Once my friends and I got going we would ride for what seemed like forever,” recalls Lea. “We loved to feel the wind blowing through our hair as we rode toward the beach. If we went fast enough we could let go of the handlebars. Pure control. Big stuff.” Lea also wanted to set an example for people her age and to “feel the same confidence I felt when I was a kid.” With determination, commitment and “a note from my doctor,” joked Lea, “my new memories will be created.” ● Anjuli Elias longs for her UC Santa Barbara days when she’d ride her trusty bike “Rusty Ruby” to class twice a day and then to the beach “in a bikini and without a helmet” (we assume that was the “beach” portion of the journey). Now 28 and teaching middle school in Mill Valley, Anjuli was spurred to apply for the bike challenge last Earth Day after encouraging her students to bike to school that day—while she zoomed up 101 from Corte Madera by car. “I wasn’t practicing what I preach,” she admits. Comparing her yearning to get back on a bike to memories of an old love affair (the one that got away was a turquoise Jazz Voltage made by Trek), Anjuli saw the bike challenge as “a fantastic excuse to start a new bike-riding love affair.” ● Nakiesha Koss, of Kentfield, had been riding a bike semi-regularly for more than a year prior to applying for the bike locally challenge—it was one of the few physical activities she could do that didn’t add to the chronic pain that still lingered from injuries she’d suffered from a fall down a stairwell that severed tendons in her foot. “The day I figured out that I could ride a bike without keeling over,” says Nakiesha, “I cried for the intense sense of liberation that came from being able to propel myself forward again.” Nakiesha, 30, liked the idea of the bike challenge because it emphasized cycling in lieu of one’s car, which, she thought, “seemed like a very noble concept that I could embrace wholeheartedly.” ●

EACH OF US in the “challenge” was also paired up with a cycling “mentor”—a coalition member whom we could turn to for advice about things—like what’s the ideal gear for ascending a 4-degree incline? Or where on the wheel do I stick the baseball card so as to give my bike a “motorcycle engine” sound? As it happened, my mentor was Kristin

Drumm, one of the more accomplished riders on the Marin County cycling scene; the Pac Sun has even featured her in various bike stories over the years. One evening, as I was panting up a small hill near San Jose Middle School in Ignacio, a cyclist blew past me so fast that I spun around several times like Wile E. Coyote does when the Roadrunner zips by. Sure enough it was Kristin, who pulled up at a stop sign ahead and waited for me to gingerly ride my brakes down the other side of the hill to meet her. We both live in Novato, so we continued on together—Kristin boldly leading the way, me mentally calculating at what speed I’d be able to survive a bad crash. Not only was it a treat to ride with a true pro like Kristin, but this would definitely earn me some brownie points with the Bicycle Coalition for going on a ride with my mentor. Kristin works for Marin’s planning department and had just ridden from the Civic Center over some really gnarly hills (cyclists say “gnarly,” right?) through Lucas Valley and Marinwood. (My daring maneuver that day had been not coming to a complete stop at a four-way crossing on Las Gallinas Road.) Kristin rides a Trek bike—and I asked her if that was a good brand. “It’s good enough for Lance Armstrong,” she replied in a tone that led me to believe I’d just asked the cycling equivalent of “So, what team did Joe Montana play for?” My mentor didn’t have all the answers— she didn’t know why my brakes squeaked or whether Lance Armstrong is a raging steroid freak—but she offered helpful advice when she could. “Don’t worry about falling,” she suggested after watching me teeter down a slope on Hill Road. “Why, because bikes don’t really fall over that much?” I asked hopefully. “No, I’ve had some really bad falls,” she replied forebodingly—with big, wide eyes in case I didn’t completely grasp how really bad falling can be. I guess it’s like death and taxes, it just didn’t do any good to worry about the inevitable.

Cal Park Tunnel


Bicyclists and pedestrians access the tunnel pathway from Andersen Drive in San Rafael, just across the street from Office Depot (869 W. Francisco Blvd., San Rafael) and from the access near the Century Larkspur Landing Theater (500 Larkspur Landing Circle, Larkspur).

● The tunnel and its approaches are 1.2 miles long and took just over two years to construct. The tunnel is approximately 1,100 feet long. It originally housed two sets of train tracks. Today it is split into two sections, a larger tunnel for the SMART train and a smaller tunnel for bicycles and pedestrians. ● The tunnel shaves 15 minutes off a trip between the Larkspur Ferry Terminal and the San Rafael Transportation Center and gets bicyclists off a dangerous section of Sir Francis Drake Boulevard as motorists come off Highway 580.

The tunnel reconstruction was made possible due to a partnership between the county of Marin and SMART, and federal, state and local grants. It is stateof-the-art, with cell phone coverage throughout, graffiti-proof walls, surveillance cameras, fire suppression and ventilation systems.

Cal Park Tunnel

THE MARIN COUNTY BICYCLE COALITION invites the public to join in the celebration of the completion of the Cal Park Tunnel, a $27 million alternative transportation facility. A ribboncutting ceremony hosted by the county of Marin and SMART will take place at the south portal (near the Century Larkspur Landing movie theater) at 3pm Friday, Dec. 10, followed by bike rides through the tunnel and a post-event gathering at Marin Brewing Company. MCBC will lead rides to the event starting at 1:30 pm from Novato, Mill Valley, Fairfax and San Francisco to the south portal; visit for times and locations or call 415/272-2756.



< 14 Challenge accepted!


IT’S BEEN SIX months now and we all seem to have answered the “challenge” (and get to keep the bikes!). It turns dark at 5pm these days, so my bike commutes from Novato to San Rafael and back are on temporary hold (plus, it’s friggin’ freezing out there this December). I plan on resurrecting my weekly rides once the rainy weather dries out and the daylight hours draw longer. I never did fall, so Kristin’s advice proved prophetic, as any good mentor’s should. Lea wasn’t so lucky. In September she badly bruised her leg while attempting what she describes as “an Evel Knievel maneuver” over a speed bump—her nostalgic recollections of cruising Ocean Beach no doubt suppressed these types of memories. The accident put her out of commission for about six weeks—and way behind pace on her mileage totals. Tom Boss and MCBC say they’ll extend her time to complete the challenge by however long her doctor kept her grounded. For Nakiesha and her still-painful foot tendons, the Bike Locally campaign posed both a physical challenge and a psychological one. With all her plans to ride to the store, her office, run errands and meet up with friends, she says she became “overwhelmed” when confronted with so many time-consuming rides. “Argh! It’s too much,” she recalls thinking. “I’ll just take the car.” But when her car went kaput for a couple of weeks the Bike Locally Challenge “really clicked.” “One morning, riding to the Larkspur Landing ferry, I looked behind me at the line of cars stretching all the way to Fairfax,” says Nakiesha. “Even at my casual pace I was dusting the commuters! I noticed this, too, at the grocery store amid the cacophony of horns and agitated drivers vying for parking spots. Not me!” I imagine all six of us can attest to smugly coasting past commuters in stopand-go traffic, or zipping straight up to a shop door while drivers circle in vain for a decent parking spot. Hopefully, we six motorists-turnedbikers can also retain our semblance of empathy for drivers who find themselves stuck going 4 mph behind an out-of-shape Schwinn jockey struggling up Los Ranchitos Road against the wind. Because there’s no denying that even in Marin the relationship between motorist and cyclist can be at times uneasy. “I have been yelled at, thrown dirty looks, thanked and reprimanded for using my bike bell,” says Anjuli. “If there is one thing about riding that I have learned, it’s the importance of proper bell etiquette— that, and padded riding shorts.” But if there’s one of us who has changed the most during the Bike Locally Challenge, it’s certainly 70-year-old Lea, who’s used her alone time on the bike paths of Marin to completely rethink how she wants to spend the rest of her life. In fact, she’s decided to leave her partner of 20 years and relocate to her second home in the Sierra foothills—a snowy little town called

Jack, 7, and Sam, 3, with their dad and his latest freebie.

Pollock Pines. She says the move has been exciting, “except when the power goes out.” She gives no small amount of credit to her new life on two wheels for the decision to free herself from the shackles of Novato. “I ask myself,” writes Lea from her snowedin El Dorado County cabin, “was it winning the challenge that gave me the confidence to leave? I don’t know. Was it going to the orthopedic surgeon and feeling like a real jock that made me re-evaluate my life? I don’t know.” Adds Lea: “By the way, I do not hold the MCBC responsible in any way for my life change... that is, unless they want to be.” ●



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IN SOME SMALL way, I’m sure the MCBC is responsible for a life change in all six of us bike-locally challenged. This may simply be from the health and environmental benefits of riding instead of driving, or having a better understanding of how bikes and cars share the commute—from the point of view of the commuter not protected by two tons of steel. Or perhaps we’ve come to the realization that we need an entirely new life itself—and moved to Pollock Pines. I imagine we’ve all gained some amount of perspective from our seats atop the Gutter Bunny Express—and we’ll never drive past a cyclist or cycle near a driver the same way again. There’s an old Sugarcubes song in which Bjork sings, “That girl on the bicycle showed great interest in all the motor crashes in the neighborhood—she looked quite innocent, she showed great interest— after she got that bicycle.” By the way, that cyclist Henry Wells nailed with his Duryea Motor Wagon in 1896 was named Evylyn Thomas. History may have forgotten you, Evylyn. But I know six people who never will. ✹ Tom Boss says the success of the Bike Locally Challenge has spurred the MCBC to make it an annual contest. Visit next spring for a chance to enter the 2011 ‘challenge.’ Email Jason at

Comment on this story in TownSquare, at ›› DECEMBER 10- DECEMBER 16, 2010 PACIFIC SUN 17

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ven though it’s winter and we’re often stuck indoors, that doesn’t stop true, card-carrying hortiholics from thinking about next year’s garden. On a rainy day, you’ll find us on the couch with a cup of tea and the beautiful Territorial Seed Company catalog or the latest Womanswork glove brochure, ordering tools for the trade that we simply can’t live without. We’re also scheming; deciding to plant more of what thrived and made us look like true master gardeners, and quietly hauling out what failed and made us look like rank amateurs. And then, there’s the reading material. More gardening books. I say you can never have enough! Here are a few that inspired me this year to dash outside and go play in the dirt. Succulent Container Gardens Debra Lee Baldwin (Timber Press) This is the book to read before you go to bed at night. You’ll have carefree, vivid dreams and wake up longing to go shopping for bold, unusual, colorful pottery and succulents. Baldwin has quite an eye for plants and photographs. You will stare at these pages and yes, you may even drool. You’ll want to live in Debra Lee Baldwin’s multihued, “succulating,” happy, little world! The book is filled with stunning photographs of 350 easy-care and mostly drought-tolerant plants that almost anyone, even my sister with the plastic houseplant collection, can grow! Most of these “dry climate jewels” can be brought indoors in cooler climates, so these fun and unique plants can thrive anywhere in the world. Succulents are so now! Come to the light, peeps. Frilly echeverias, cascading senecios, edgy agaves that combine texture and color while asking bubkis (nothing) from the gardener is where it’s at!

Thriving Beyond Sustainability: Pathways to a Resilient Society Andres R. Edwards (New Society Publishers) Bay Area author, educator, designer and sustainability consultant Andres Edwards has faith that we nincompoop humans have the tools to create a thriving society instead of one that commits “unintended ecological suicide (ecocide)” by destroying our natural resources. I’m so glad Edwards has faith in us. He begins the book with the lessons documented by archaeologists and historians of Easter Island’s decline from a complex, functioning society to one that destroyed its forests and marine life. With 6.7 billion people on planet Earth, the picture looked pretty bleak to me, but after reading this book I have a tiny bit more hope that maybe we’re all not as dense and gullible as we seem. (Or are we? “Clean coal,” anyone?) Learning about the work that individuals, organizations and communities around the world are doing to build an alternative future that strives to restore environmental health, the reader comes away eager to become part of the solution. Included is an introduction written by Bill McKibben.

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< 19 Till’s the season original Edible Landscaping (Sierra Books), hailed by gardeners everywhere as a groundbreaking classic. This new edition presents the latest design and how-to information in full-color format, featuring more than 300 inspiring photographs. Creasy is a plant genius and shares her knowledge generously, explaining how to create a gorgeous home landscape filled with mouthwatering vegetables, fruits, nuts and berries. She also recommends varieties, gives culinary uses and provides horticultural information on how to maintain plants, control pests and diseases using organic, environmentally friendly practices. This is the perfect book for your friends who have recently moved into a new house or family members who are considering losing their cranky, thirsty, chemically addicted front lawn to grow a victory garden. Lawns are for losers! (Unless you tend to them organically. Then you’re a winner and my star student.) Good Bug Bad Bug: Who’s Who, What They Do, and How to Manage Them Organically Jessica Walliser (St. Lynn’s Press) Organic gardening expert Jessica Walliser has put together the perfect bug guide to keep by your side in the garden or shed when you need to quickly determine if the bug creeping up your favorite climbing rose is a friend or foe. She writes about 24 of the most com-

mon and destructive garden pests and 14 of the most beneficial ones. Not only are there fantastic facts on each, but also a color photograph (not too scary looking) is included along with what damage the insect does and how to get rid of it in the most ecologically safe way. I keep this book at the school garden. Kids love bugs! And they should. Insects were here millions of years before humans. They’re not going anywhere, and less than 1 percent of insects out there are considered to be pests in agriculture. Leave them alone. Go pick on someone your own size! Golden Gate Gardening: The Complete Guide to Year-Round Food Gardening in the San Francisco Bay Area Pam Peirce (Sasquatch Books) Peirce is armed with years of experience and advice to help you find the best crops to grow for your area (or microclimate) so you’re not wasting time, money or precious water in droughty California. In chapter one, “Year-Round Bounty,” you’ll learn which crops will thrive in what season in you area. Highlight those recommendations and stick with them! Don’t veer off the path. Trust me on that one. Some other critical advice from Peirce: “Start small, mix edibles and ornamentals, know your soil, add organic matter, invite the neighboring earthworms to migrate to your yard and eliminate or drastically reduce the use of environmentally disruptive

M A R i N


Please support our local independent bookstores or nurseries to find these gems! Book Passage in Corte Madera, Point Reyes Books in Point Reyes Station and Sloat Garden Center.

tory writer Bill Logan; Andy Lipkis, founder and president of TreePeople; Vandana Shiva, a physicist, author and environmental leader; and Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai. As the filmmakers say, “The only remedy for disconnecting people from the natural world is connecting them to it again.” Throughout history we’ve seen civilizations rise and fall based on how they treated their land. What did I think after watching the film? That It should be shown in high school and college science classes around the world. Let’s get those teenagers off their electronic gadgets (OMG!) and outside learning how to build healthy soil by composting and growing organic food right in their very own backyards. (PAW!—Parents are watching.) ✹ Play in the dirt with Annie at

See our online Real Estate section at ››


Attention realtors: To submit your free open home listing for this page and for our online listing map go to ››, click on Real Estate on the left navigation bar, then scroll to the bottom of our new Real Estate page and click on the open home submission link. Please note that times and dates often change for listed Open Homes. Call the phone number shown on the properties you wish to visit to check for changes prior to visiting the home.



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Last, for peeps who like pictures... Dirt! The Movie Gene Rosow and Bill Benenson, filmmakers Dirt! The Movie is a documentary film based on the book Dirt: The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth by William Bryant Logan. Though the film covers dire topics like the effect of climate change on agriculture, global soil erosion, droughts, flooding and crop damage, and the pest and pesticide struggles of farmers around the world, it’s also a poignant educational tool filled with a sense of awe, humor and hope. News flash: Dirt is made from the same elements as the stars, plants and animals. It’s alive. The film is cleverly narrated by Jamie Lee Curtis and peppered with scholarly science experts such as award-winning natural his-



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pesticides to encourage natural predators.” The first part of the book is packed with the growing basics and the second half, titled “Vegetables From A to Z,” gives specific growing instructions for a plethora of common and uncommon vegetables, fruits, herbs and edible flowers. The most prolific varieties are recommended and a few recipes are tossed in throughout to make you hungry. “May your gardening efforts add to your stock of patience, persistence, and thrift, and to your understanding of our dependence upon the earth and upon each other,” shares Pam Peirce.

$499,000 383-8500 $729,000 459-1010

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Submit your FREE Open Home listings at›› no later than 10am on Wednesday.

Vintage Oaks photos by Bob Morris Photography


Located off of Rowland Blvd. exit, Highway 101 For more information call (415) 897.9999

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says. ““I know they were criminals, but to me they were just really swee sweet and fun. My dad had gotten them season sonal jobs at S. Klein’s, so that they would stop b being criminals—and my father was upset to see them loitering because he was in danger of losing his job. I guess he hadn’t been very successful as their social worker. “Anyway, now it’s Christmas Eve, and I’m feeling fine,” Kornbluth goes on. “Yes, I’d lost the story of Santa Claus, but I figured that was just for little kids. Now I had the real story, the true myth. That night, I was determined to stay up and be awake when the deliveryman from S. Klein’s arrived with my toys. This was at our apartment, a second-floor apartment on East 7th Street between C and D. So I fell asleep listening for the magical rumbling of the delivery truck. “My father didn’t expect me to get up so early, and when I went up to the part of the room where the tree was—there were no gifts. Because my father hadn’t taken the gifts out from where he’d hid them under the bench. So now I was standing there crying, incredibly disappointed. And my father doesn’t know what to do. He was stuck. “And then, at that moment, there was this jingling sound from outside,” Kornbluth laughs. “Actually, it was more of a tinkling sound, coming from around Avenue D. I opened up the window and looked down, and coming around the corner, pushing this rack of brand-new ladies’ pantsuits from S. Klein’s department store, was a member of the Royal Bishops, and behind him was another member of the Royal Bishops, also pushing a rack. In fact, it was all of the Royal Bishops, and they had big bins full of toys and gifts, and they were pushing them down the street. And Johnny Lubell and Tony ‘Little Tiger’ Lopez, with Santa caps on, were shouting ‘Ho ho ho,’ and—this was a really poor neighborhood, right?—and they were literally throwing gifts, ladies’ pantsuits and other stuff, to the people who’d come out to see what was going on. “And Johnny Lubell saw me and said, ‘Hey Joshy, Merry Christmas!’ He grabbed the ladder from the fire escape, and he climbed up to our apartment with this big sack of toys, and he handed me this sack of toys. I looked at my dad and said, ‘Dad! You could have been more specific. You just said it was the deliveryman from S. Klein’s. You could have told me it was Johnny Lubell and Tony ‘Little Tiger’ Lopez! “Looking back on it now,” he muses, “my father must have been very conflicted at that moment. Because, on the one hand, he must have realized he’d just lost his job. He’d gotten jobs for the Royal Bishops, and they’d just stolen the entire inventory. But on the positive side, the crazy story he’d told me had proved to be correct. So the lesson, I think, is that, as messed up as you might be, and as much as you might be improvising, if you have faith, and hope, the magic will still happen.” Faith and hope, it seems, really are the ingredients out of which Santa is made. And no one is forcing us to give them up. Faith, apparently, is simply a matter of choice. “I never really stopped believing in Santa Claus,” says Renee De La Prade, San Francisco accordionist (Culann’s Hounds, Whiskey and Women), and the mastermind behind the sensational annual Accordion Babes Album and Pin-up Calendar ( “As a 6- or 7-year-old kid, I noticed that Santa’s handwriting looked exactly like my mom’s handwriting on all those gifts. And there was a rumor going around second-graders in my school that Santa wasn’t real. So, I was compelled to give the no-Santa idea a lot of weight. “As a science and philosophy nut,” she continues, “I was delighted to discover, this was a few years later, that it’s generally accepted among scientists that it’s nearly impossible to prove that something doesn’t exist. So, I’ve always held out a little bit of faith for Santa— and also for unicorns. “And,” she adds, “I totally believe in my mom.” ❉

To m m y Sm others

h, I was probably 5 or 6, I guess,” says Robin Williams, “when I found out there was no Santa Claus—or specifically, that my parents had been pretending to be Santa Claus. It wasn’t really traumatic or anything—I just realam ized that if Santa Claus were real, he probably s wouldn’t be wrapping my presents in newspaper.” For many, the spirit of Christmas is inseparable from the idea of Santa Claus, that impossibly patient and generous force of goodness and kindness who, every year without fail, slides down a myriad of chimneys, gifts in hand, to remind the world that there is always time for a little magic and wonder. Just as our belief in Santa Claus is synonymous with innocence and childhood, not believing in Santa is synonymous with growing up. It is, for most of us, our first dance with losing faith, and how we respond to it says much about what kind of people we will become. “I was mad, at first, when I figured out there was no Santa Claus,” says Bo Smothers, 17, son of the great comedian and television legend Tommy Smothers, 73. “I guess I was 10 or so, and all I could think was that my parents had lied to me, especially my dad. He was the worst. He actually would go up on the roof and leave footprints, and then take me up and show me where Santa had been. I was really upset that he’d tried so hard to trick me, to make me believe in something that wasn’t real.” Eventually, after a few more years, the younger Smothers began to see things another way. “When I grew up a little,” he says, “I kind of just figured out that, when I was born, my dad was pretty old, so when he was doing all that stuff at Christmas—climbing on the roof to leave footprints—that must have been pretty hard for such an old guy. It occurred to me that he must really love me to go to all that trouble. He must have really wanted to make things special for me at Christmas. So now, I’m OK with it. I think it’s pretty great that he did that for me.” Though the loss of Santa is emotionally painful for many, it is a complicated pain. In most cases, it is difficult to separate our hopes and disappointments regarding St. Nick from our feelings about our parents and their complicity in the great, wonderful, weird Santa conspiracy. For Josh Kornbluth, monologist (Love and Taxes, Ben Franklin Live) and filmmaker (Haiku Tunnel, Red Diaper Baby), those feelings are more complicated than most. “My father loved Christmas, even though he was a Jewish communist,” Kornbluth explains. “In fact, he loved Christmas because he was a Jewish communist. Santa Claus was an example of someone redistributing toys equally around the world, and the elves were unionized, as far as he was concerned. By the Wobblies. Still, when I was 6 or 7, my father decided to be a good truth-teller and tell me that Santa Claus was not technically real. Except, when he told me that, I burst into tears. We were on the subway, and my father was alarmed that he’d made me so upset. So, thinking on his feet—and being a good, loving father—on the spot, he came up with a counter-story.” Those millions of toys delivered to all the children of the world, Kornbluth’s dad told him, actually come from S. Klein’s department store. “S. Klein’s was this high discount department store in Union Square,” Kornbluth explains. “So my father said, ‘The deliveryman from S. Klein’s puts all the toys in his delivery van, and he delivers them all around the world. That’s how it’s really done. Not Santa Claus.’ I guess he thought of that because, right at that moment, where we changed from the subway to the bus at Union Square, it was right in front of S. Klein’s department store.” As Kornbluth recalls, while he was being told this story, standing on the sidewalk in front of S. Klein’s his father noticed two members from a local gang, the Royal Bishops, loitering in the doorway. At the time, the elder Kornbluth was a social worker for the state of New York, and the Royal Bishops were his responsibility. Josh loved them. “I especially loved the gang leaders, Johnny Lubell and Tony ‘Little Tiger’ Lopez,” he

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oliday shopping for the kids gets harder and harder every yearâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the days of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Johnny wants a pair of skates, Susie wants a dollâ&#x20AC;? are deďŹ nitely over. So to help weary parents sort through Santaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ever-growing bag of Christmas goodies, hereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the PaciďŹ c Sunâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s guide to the seasonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hottest toys!

The Xbox Kinect ($250) Leak Proof DESIGN










The latest in the world of motionactivated gaming systems, the Xbox Kinect attaches steadfast to your current Xboxâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; just like your children. Cool quotient: (scale 1 to 10): 3, for those who insist gaming systems peaked with Intellevision; everyone else, 10 Obnoxiousness quotient: 10, but only if your kids go to a Waldorf school What it reminds us of: The monolith from 2001 How your kids will react to it: Like the ape-humans to the monolith in 2001 Games available for it: Bowling, soccer, boxing Games weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d like to see available for it: Games without frontiersâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;war without tears Social ramiďŹ cations: Playdate and birthday invites galore if kids are under 12; overwhelming rejection by opposite sex if over 25

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Nerf weaponry has never been so advancedâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the handle can be used as a bipod, so your children will have more stability when targeting their friends and loved ones. Comes with impressive sighting technologyâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;for that authentic sniper experience. Cool quotient: (scale 1 to 10): 10, if you work for Blackwater; everyone else, 1 Obnoxiousness quotient: 10, if you believe the Second Amendment is an anachronistic call for a civilian army under siege by the mercenary forces of George III; everyone else, 9.5 Awards: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Toy of the Yearâ&#x20AC;?â&#x20AC;&#x201D;NRA Youth People who purchased this also purchased: Babyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s First Grenade Launcher Educational value: Zero, unless youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re using it to hold your teacher hostage in ex-

change for grades What it reminds us of: Mekong Delta, summer â&#x20AC;&#x2122;68, knee deep in the sh--

Minotaurus ($25)

People who purchased this also purchased: Tickle Me, Dr. Elmo Awards: Grammy, â&#x20AC;&#x153;best new artist,â&#x20AC;? National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences

This latest in Legoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s line of board games is that rare combination of 21st-century plastics and 400 B.C. polytheistic apocrypha. Cool quotient: (scale 1 to 10): 12, as in the 12 labors of Hercules Obnoxiousness quotient: 1, though Theseusâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s incessant bragging about how he slew the Minotaur is pretty obnoxious after the umpteenth time Pros: Every game bolsters building, strategic and gamesmanship skills Cons: Every year, seven male youths and seven maidens who have lost at Lego Minotaurus are sacriďŹ ced to the Minotaur at his labyrinth upon the island of Crete Educational value: 8; comes with illustrated instructions on how to build own set of wings out of feathers and waxâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;label on box warns kids against â&#x20AC;&#x153;ďŹ&#x201A;ying too close to the sunâ&#x20AC;?

Imaginext Bigfoot the Monster ($100)

Sing-A-Ma-Jigs ($20) Polymorphic cuddly toys belt out age-old Americana standards every time you squeeze oneâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;as a complete six-piece ensemble, theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re an a cappella tour de force on par with Lambert, Hendricks and Ross. Cool quotient: Did we mention they sing a cappella? Obnoxiousness quotient: 3, believe it or not Pleasant thing they remind us of: The â&#x20AC;&#x153;talk boxâ&#x20AC;? guitar solo in â&#x20AC;&#x153;Do You Feel Like We Doâ&#x20AC;? from Frampton Comes Alive! Unpleasant thing they remind us of: The doomed H.A.L. singing â&#x20AC;&#x153;Daisy Bellâ&#x20AC;? in 2001 Educational value: 10, that is if one considers teaching your children about the horrors of music to be of â&#x20AC;&#x153;valueâ&#x20AC;?

This 14-inch tall remote-controlled Sasquatch will do to your living room what the legendary cryptid has been doing to the PaciďŹ c Northwest since ďŹ rst being sighted in 1924. He can walk forward and backward, do ďŹ&#x201A;ips and breathe. Obnoxiousness quotient: 10, it also belches Cool quotient: 10, if youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Bigfoot enthusiast Tom Biscardi; 2, everyone else What it reminds us of: Your kids Most unnecessary accessory: The unexplained plastic green leaf Inspirational quote: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Buddy! Wanna play?! Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m angry!! Whoo whoo whooggg!!â&#x20AC;?

My Pillow Pets ($25) For more than a century, kids have been using their beloved stuffed animals as pillows; now they can do it for 25 smackers. Cool quotient: 10, if youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Linus Van Pelt or Walter â&#x20AC;&#x153;Radarâ&#x20AC;? Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Reilly; everyone else, 0 Obnoxiousness quotient: 0, if you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t consider thinly veiled marketing cynicism; 6 if you do What it reminds us of: Pillows; taxidermied pets People who purchased this also purchased: Bottled water; pet rocks Non sequitur marketing tagline: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your pillow and a pet. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a pillow pet.â&#x20AC;? â?&#x2030; Share your favorite toys with Jason at jwalsh@paciďŹ

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These folks are throwing SmartMeters off the charts! Check out what it looks like to spend over $4,000 in one month on PG&E. For the 18th year, the Rombeiros open their home to big-time Christmas decoration connoisseurs. Nightly, 6-10pm, through Jan. 6. 34 Devonshire Dr., Novato. Free.

While remaining true to the original message of economic peril and the spirit of giving, the Novato Theater Company presents a new Marin County adaptation of A Christmas Carol. With an added musical twist for a lively and fun production, the performances are a holiday must for the whole family. Novato Theater Company Playhouse at 484 Ignacio Blvd. in Novato. Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, Sunday matinees at 3pm. $10-$18. Reserve tickets at 415/883-4498.

Gingerbread Architecture Extravaganza! So much sugar, so little time. Need we say more? Dec. 11 through 23 at the Bay Area Discovery Museum, 557 McReynolds Rd., Sausalito. Check for times and registration. $30 includes supplies and museum entrance.

Maison Reve Holiday Celebration Visit with Santa, make your own snowďŹ&#x201A;ake art, play in the kidsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; fort. The ďŹ rst 50 children will receive free Christmas snow cones. Dec. 11, 11am-2pm. Free. Call 415/676-1443 or visit Maison Reve, 108 Throckmorton, Mill Valley.

Marine Mammal Center Holiday Open House Visit and take photos with Frannie the Fur Seal, watch a screening of the award-winning documentary In the Wake of Giants and listen to Jeanne Harvey read from her book Astro: The Steller Sea Lion. Dec. 11,








#HICKEN ,AMB 'OAT%NTREES Is it true one can see the Rombeiro Christmas House from the moon?

10am-5pm at the Marine Mammal Center, 2000 Bunker Rd., Fort Cronkhite, Sausalito. Free. 415/289-7325.









Santa Arrives by Fire Engine It seems Santa actually has more fun than the kids with the cool stuff he does all month. This Saturday, Dec. 11, Santa will be riding on Station 4â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ re engine throughout the Tam Valley ďŹ&#x201A;atland streets (Flamingo Rd., Jean St., Ross, Cardinal Rd., Cardinal Court). He has a great job! 3-6pm. Free. Call 415/3886393 or visit Tamalpais Valley, Mill Valley.

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Pancakes with Santa! My God, this guy can eat! Join the jolliest dude of the season for yet another carb-loaded pancake breakfast. Dec. 11, 9:30-11:30am at the Marin YMCA 1500 Los Gamos Dr., San Rafael. $5. Call 415/446-2103 for reservations.


Kidsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Gingerbread Workshop A perfect way to get the kiddos hopped up on sugar on what promises to be a rainy winter day. Head on over for the sticky, decorative fun at this gingerbread house workshop. Dec. 11 or 12, 10am. $40. Call 415/331-8766 or visit In The Kitchen Culinary, 300 Turney St., Sausalito.

Holiday Storytelling at the Civic Center Library A sweet and lovely holiday activity for kids of all ages, this event features a reading of poet Dylan Thomasâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; A Childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas in Wales. Dec. 16, 6-7:30pm at the Civic Center Library, 3501 Civic Center Dr. # 427, San Rafael. Free. 415/507-4048.

Horse and Buggy Rides with Santa in Fairfax

See authentic Christmas seals at the Marine Mammal Center Holiday Open House.

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Novatoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s famous Rombeiro Christmas House

Through 12/12: A Christmas Carol, A New Musical

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Fun and free buggy rides with Santa, Dec. 12, 11am-1pm, followed by the Winter Flea Market and Craft Fair. Buggy rides at Bolinas Park, 124 Bolinas Rd. or Beach House Style, 799 Center Blvd., Fairfax. Craft fair, 11am to 5pm, at Beach House Style. Free. 415/456-5574. â?&#x2030;


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Great Late-Night Dining!

Not out of the Woodlands yet Food wonderful, but service still stuck in a thicket by Car o l I nke llis


oon after the demise of here, but... the service was WOODLANDS CAFE Willie’s Cafe in Kenta problem. To be fair, the 799 College Ave., Kentfield; field, the disappointcafe, which opened early this 415/457-8163. ment turned into anticipayear, scrapped ordering at tion when word surfaced the counter in favor of table Open every day 7am-9pm. that Don Santa would conservice shortly after estabtinue growing his Woodlishing dinner service a few lands “empire” by converting months ago. the space and opening Woodlands Cafe. The atmosphere at lunch and dinner is And, in many ways, the new incarnation a striking contrast. On a weekday evening, lives up to those initial expectations. The all was quiet and low-key. But at lunchtime space has been gussied up, inside and out. midweek, the place was packed. At dinner, The old homey atmosphere is now quite service was lackadaisical and the pacing contemporary, attractive and upscale: open off. While deciding on entrees, we ordered and airy with modern pendant lighting, tall an excellent flatbread appetizer ($6.95), ceilings, an open kitchen, an outdoor patio four wedges topped with local blue cheese, with a fountain, a couple of communal tables arugula and balsamic vinegar and olive oil. and couches around a fireplace. We had a long time to look around while Woodlands offers plenty of choices to waiting for it. The colorful, tasty Peasant appeal to a wide range of palates—including Salad ($9.95), mixed organic greens, Fuji a fresh pastry display case, a comprehensive apple slices, grapes, Gorgonzola, spiced takeout menu, gluten-free selections from candied pecans and dried cranberries with pizzas to desserts, all made with top-notch, apple-shallot vinaigrette—almost a full meal fresh ingredients. And, overall, the food is itself—arrived as we were finishing the flatvery good. There’s really so much to like bread. A couple of bites into the salad, our

entrees arrived. Unfortunately, the table was too small to accommodate everything. The Woodlands Farms pizza ($12.95), a delectable combination of grilled veggies, cheeses, pesto, mushrooms and roasted garlic, was tasty, in spite of the non-crispy crust. Take note: The creamy Shrimp Penne Pasta ($13.95), very good and generous enough for a second meal, has enough garlic to keep the vampires—and possibly anyone else—away. Deciding on dessert wasn’t easy: 13 kinds of ice cream, berry cobbler, cakes and more. Unlike our entrees, the wedge of three-layer chocolate cake, a very reasonable $5.50, was a long time coming, but worth waiting for. Maybe it was an off night service-wise. But at lunch a few days later, the service was worse. It was very busy and service was slow, food delivered to the wrong tables—in fact, while taking our order our waiter stopped mid-sentence to figure out where the plates belonged. One sandwich ordered without tomato and avocado was served with both. And then we were ignored. After a while, a woman came by—the manager, owner? who knows?—to ask how our meals were. Other than that, nothing. Hoping to order dessert, we tried to signal our waiter, to no avail. After 20 minutes or so, he came by and slapped the bill down on the table—without asking if we’d like anything else. We did enjoy our sandwiches, though. The organic Spring Hill Farms grilled cheese served with a fruit cup ($6.50) was just right for a 2-year-old; the combo of crustless

›› ALL iN GOOD TASTE Cooking camps for kids—just like ‘Meatballs,’ but with real meatballs... by Pat Fu sco

kitchen where youngsters will learn to prepare locally grown seasonal foods. Cost is $250 for five children ($20 each for additional kids, with no more than 10 students). An instructor from What’s Cooking will bring necessary tools, etc., to the site. Check out the details at ONE LUMP OR TWO? A traditional tea can be a fun winter outing for people of all ages. The annual Teddy Bear Tea at the Tiburon Library Dec. 11-12 is geared especially to the youngest set with hot cocoa, savories and sweets in a festive atmosphere with sing-alongs and story time. Seatings are at 9:30, 10:30 and 11:30am; the cost is $25 per person. This is a fundraiser for new books and programs for children and young adults. Reservations: 415/435-7799... Throughout December the Belrose Theatre in San Rafael is open Wednesday to Saturday, 1-4pm, to welcome everyone in for a pot of tea, scones, cookies, cakes and tea sandwiches. Wine and champagne are available for grown-ups at an additional price. Cost is

The new Woodlands Cafe has been jam packed during the holiday lunch rush.

grilled bread and mild cheese was perfect. The Woodlands Club ($9.95), served on thin, grilled bread is so generously filled its insides fell out—a delicious, if not particularly dainty, sandwich. Same with the Chicken Piccata Lauren ($10.95), another generous serving of thick slices of chicken breast, lettuce, tomato and a flavorful lemon caper aioli. The food is good, fresh and satisfying; and, considering the quality and quantity, the prices acceptable. Woodlands has that part down, but management needs to work on service. Based on the lunch crowd, it appears that the service, or lack thereof, is not keeping people away. But for a truly nourishing experience, this nice a place should serve more than just good food. ✹ Get cheesy with Carol at

Give us a taste of your thoughts at ›› 19 ( 2010 sensation is Sonomic, an “almost vinegar” not so tart as red wine vinegar, with a richer taste than balsamic, made from cabernet sauvignon grapes. A multipurpose condiment, it’s useful as a dressing, in cooking or as a dessert drizzle; $18 ( Sonoma’s own version of Calvados, the classic apple brandy, is Apple-ation, created from heirloom organic fruit. Use it in cocktails, add it to eggnog or—best of all—sip it after a special meal. This is in limited supply from the Davis Family Winery, $35 for a 350ml bottle (’s Katz and Company does everything for the customer with its handsomely packaged gourmet goods, such as a gift box of three Branches honeys, 17-ounce jars (each one prettily wrapped) with a beechwood dipper inside a gift box. $38 (

Yummer camp! LOOK WHO’S IN THE KITCHEN Keeping kids entertained and—if we’re lucky— involved in positive activities is a challenge during the holidays. For those who love to hang around the kitchen, a cooking class is a surefire cure for boredom, offering a chance to learn something new, meet new friends and reap tasty rewards. Sausalito’s In The Kitchen Culinary schedules two Cooking Camps for the season, three-day sessions that consist of instruction in making meals from scratch for lunch each day, with Iron Chefstyle challenges on the last day of each session. Dec. 21-23 will cover pasta in its many forms; Dec. 27-30 introduces foods from Mexico, Morocco, India and China. Both run 10am-1pm; cost is $165 per student. Details: two-day Holiday Cooking Camp to be held Dec. 20-21 at the Bel Aire School in Tiburon for kids ages 8 and over will emphasize choosing nutritious foods for yummy menus. The 9am-1pm classes are $195 per student. Information: www. can get together to arrange a private class to be held in a home



Operation C.H.E.F.—you’ve come a long way from Easy Bake Ovens, baby...

$20, $10 for younger guests. Reservations are required; call Johnny at 415/902-5188. TIME’S A WASTIN’ Shipping deadlines for Christmas are drawing nigh. It’s high time to shop for unique gifts online, examples of local and regional treasures. Rustic Bakery in Larkspur has gift sets of organic baked goods, like a $40 collection of flatbreads, crostini, crackers and cookies for entertaining ( petits fours are the specialty at Sausalito’s Dragonfly Cakes, three tiny layers filled with buttercream or fruit, with decorative coating. Sixteen Winter Signature pieces are $36, and bite-size reproductions of pale blue Tiffany boxes are $48 for two dozen. Order by Dec.

BIZ BUZZ Tyler Florence’s latest restaurant opened last week in Napa’s burgeoning gourmet row. Rotisserie & Wine, with former Ubuntu chef Jeremy Fox at the helm, is vaguely Southern of menu and has an adjacent shop similar to his Mill Valley venue... Owner Shah Bahreyni has confirmed the rumor that Boca Pizzeria is adding a second Neapolitan establishment “somewhere in southern Marin.” Stay tuned. ✹ Contact Pat at

Give us a taste of your thoughts at ››


›› MUSiC

Jest ye merry gentlemen Marin—a hotbed of seasonal sarcasm by G r e g Cahill


irst the good news: The notion that you’re forced to listen to bad Christmas music—the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s version of “Joy to the World”? The Smashing Pumpkins’ “Christmastime”?—is a myth. Now the better news: Marin County—a haven for liberal, artsy mavens—is home to a veritable cottage industry of irreverent holiday music. This year, we’re blessed with two—count ’em, two!—CDs chock-full of sly let’s-pull-onSanta’s-beard jocularity with just a splash of sentimentality and rootsmusic authenticity. Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks’ shiny, new Crazy for Christmas (Surfdog) is perfect for those who like their eggnog stiff and their wit dry. Hicks has been churning o u t these holiday-themed confections for nearly two decades, first as an elf emeritus with the Mill Valley-based Christmas Jug Band,

which offers a potent blend of Wild Turkey, washboard and wit. Crazy for Christmas, the follow-up to 2009’s critically acclaimed Tangled Tales, reunites Hicks with the most recent incarnation of the Hot Licks. The set contains standards and clever originals (“I’ve Got Christmas by the Tail,” “Carol of the Bells” and “Christmas Mornin’” sung to the tune of Hicks’ vintage “Where’s the Money”). All are imbued with the folksy-swing and hipster vibe that Hicks does so well. Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks perform the Holidaze in Hicksville annual extravaganza Wednesday, Dec. 22, at 8 and 10pm, at Yoshi’s in San Francisco. Tickets are $20 (at the late show) and $30 (at the early show). Meanwhile, The Christmas Jug Band’s On the Holiday Highway is a genre-jumping musical melange that gift-wraps 16 fun-

The Christmas Jug Band comes a-wassailing.

loving tracks recorded live at the Masonic Hall in Mill Valley, the now-defunct Sweetwater Station in Larkspur and the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley. The musical styles range from Cajun to trad, blues to klezmer and beyond. You get 12 of the North Bay’s most gifted players on these Christmas Jug Band recordings, including Hicks, guitarist and vocalist Paul Rogers, keyboardist and vocalist Austin de Lone, and bassist and vocalist Tim Eschliman, as well as special guests that include Country Joe McDonald and Mike Duke.

Holiday music doesn’t get any better than the groove-laden push-pull rhythm of “Santa’s Goin’ Crazy This Year,” with a jazzy sopranino sax solo by Eschliman. All that and jaw harps, harmonicas and kazoos, too. The Christmas Jug Band is playing somewhere in the Bay Area nearly every day between now and Christmas (go figure). You can catch them Thursday, Dec. 9, at the Seahorse Restaurant in Sausalito; Friday, Dec. 10 (as 4 Elves Named Mo), at the Station House Cafe in Point Reyes Station; Sunday, Dec. 12, for a family matinee concert at 142 Throckmorton in Mill Valley; Friday, Dec. 17, with special guest Bonnie Hayes, at the Palm Ballroom in San Rafael; Saturday, Dec. 18, with special guest Barry Melton, at the Mystic Theatre in Petaluma; and Tuesday and Wednesday, Dec. 21 and 22, at the Woods Music Hall in Mill Valley. For details, visit Have a cool Yule, y’all. ✹ Send season’s greetings to Greg at

›› SPiN OF THE WEEK The Cherry Tree: Songs, Carols & Ballads for Christmas (Harmonia Mundi) by Anonymous 4 This is the popular female vocal group’s first CD in three years, the first in a decade with co-founding member Ruth Cunningham and the first to offer both medieval and Americana songs. The centerpiece of the album—recorded earlier this year at Skywalker Sound in San Rafael—is an ancient English carol (dating back at least to the 14th century), and two American songs derived from it.—GC

Tune up to the Marin music scene at



Rockin’ around the Christmas tree All we want for Christmas is our two front-row tickets to Marin music! by The Space Cowb oy


t’s been quite a musical year in the North Bay and The Beat would like to take a moment to applaud those who attended, hosted, supported, worked or performed in our local music scene. As always, it looks as though we will close out the year with a rockin’ December! First off, everyone is thankful that the newly renovated and reopened George’s Nightclub on Fourth Street in San Rafael survived a kitchen fire in the early morning hours of Nov. 20. Although the smoke and subsequent flooding ruined the new floors, carpeting and sound system, they are scheduled to reopen for business Thursday, Dec. 9. Grammy Award-winning drummer/producer Narada Michael Walden will host his 14th annual Holiday Extravaganza Friday, Dec. 17, at 142 Throckmorton Theatre, featuring Lydia Pense (Cold Blood) and Clarence “Big Man” Clemons (E Street Band), among others. This star-studded affair will benefit Walden’s foundation, which promotes music education among Bay Area youth. On Oct. 5, Petaluma singer/songwriter Arann Harris was hit by a drunken driver. Although he is still recovering, he and his Farm Band have decided to go on with the “Holiday Hoedown: The Big Give-back” thank you-

show Sunday, Dec. 12, at Petaluma’s Mystic Theatre. Opening the night will be Hardly Strictly Bluegrass founder Warren Hellman’s band the Wronglers, as well as many friends and special guests. There will be a canned food drive, gift giveaway and raffle, singalongs and a holiday sweater contest. All ages are welcome, doors open at 5:30pm and those who bring two cans of food for the needy will receive a $5 discount at the door. Tuesday, Dec. 21, will mark the first anniversary of the “KortUzday” jam sessions at Fairfax’s 19 Broadway nightclub. Created when guitarist Danny Uzilevsky (Chrome Johnson, HoneyDust) teamed up with keyboardist Jonathan Korty (Vinyl, Electric Apricot) in a full-band, invitational format, the Tuesday night jams have been graced by many extra-special guests including Pete Sears (Starship, Hot Tuna), Barry Sless (Phil Lesh & Friends, Moonalice) Austin de Lone (Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe), Bonnie Hayes, Joe Russo (Furthur), Archie Williams (Maria Muldaur, Dr. John) and Clarence Slaughter (Trombone Shorty), to name a few. Don’t miss what will surely be a fantastic evening of free music with many talented performers. It’s that time of the year when the one and only Christmas Jug Band is back to spread


Paradise by the northern lights ‘Almost Maine’ is near perfection at College of Marin by Le e Brad y


he College of Marin Drama Department has chosen a perfect vehicle to showcase its students in Almost Maine. And near-perfect director Molly Noble makes even the newest actors play well together in their production of playwright John Cariani’s 17 short plays, all of which take place on a wintry Friday night in northern Maine. Most deal with the pangs and pleasures of young lovers who do lots of kissing (which elicited nostalgic “ahs!” from a matinee audience of mostly over-the-hill lovers). On a simple set with stars and northern lights, Glory (Sumitra Narendran) carries her broken heart in a bag until she meets East (Ray Martin), a repairman who can fix anything. Gayle (Olivia Harrison) brings the nine “bags of love” her reluctant lover Lendall (Spencer Acton) has given her—while she demands her own back. Meanwhile, Adam Roy plays the torchbearing Jimmy, who gets “found” and saved by a new love at the very last minute.

San Rafael residents Isaac Islas and Leilani Meng will warm the cockles of theater lovers’hearts in COM’s‘Almost Maine.’

Not surprisingly, the second act has some serious moments as Hope (Susan Donnelly) returns home to say “yes” to a man (Robert Smithton) who has moved on, and Phil (Ryan Martin) and Marcy (Shawn Oda) give up on a dead relationship. Painful

It’ll take more than being hit by two tons of steel to keep Farm Band frontman Arann Haris, second from left, from hoeing down this Sunday.

mirth and merriment throughout the holiday season. However, their first show of the season, Thursday, Dec. 9, at Sausalito’s Seahorse Restaurant (305 Harbor Dr.) benefits a more important cause. Fifty percent of the show’s proceeds will help pay the medical bills of their longtime sax/flute player Jim Rothermel. A legendary studio musician and Bay Area music scene fixture for over 40 years, Rothermel was diagnosed with acute leukemia recently. If you see one Christmas Jug Band show this year, make it that one. The seven other appearances by the Jug Band include visits to the Freight & Salvage Dec. 14 (with special guest Barry Melton), San Rafael’s Palm Ballroom Dec. 17 (with special guest Bonnie Hayes) and Dec. 21 and 22 at The Woods in Mill Valley. Rumor also has it that the one and only Riz Rizman (Rizorchestra) will be joining the band this year as well.

NOW PLAYING Almost Maine runs through Dec. 12 at the College of Marin Studio Theatre, on campus at 835 College Ave. in Kentfield; 415/4859385, release/111510.htm. Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead runs through Jan. 15 at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, 2015 Addison St., Berkeley; 510/647-2949,

moments, however, are followed by hysterical love scenes as Randy (Joshua Wyatt) and Chad (Daniel Labov Dunne) fall and tumble about the stage; and Rhonda (Eryn Brydon) and Dave (Ed McCloud) who, as they frantically take off layer after layer to make love, give audiences a hint of why northern Maine may be decreasing in population. Some of the actors are seasoned and some are not. It is a credit to director Noble that the only stars onstage are the ones painted on the set. Surreal and poignant, fast and funny, this ensemble delivers charming entertainment in a season when we can let go and believe in love.


emony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead is a delightful mash-up of music, film and puppetry, with a live performance by Geoff Hoyle who, as a stuffed-shirt narrator with bad hair, intro-

A quick breakdown of musical happenings on this New Year’s Eve in the North Bay. The Western Saloon features Dave More, Smiley’s hosts The Jenny Kerr Band, Rancho Nicasio’s NYE tradition continues with the Zydeco Flames, Papermill Creek Saloon faves The RevTones play a free show, Peri’s Bar will rock to the sounds of HoneyDust, the Sleeping Lady welcomes back the Tom Finch Group, 19 Broadway presents Hot Buttered Rum (two nights Thursday, Friday), Murphy Productions and the Palm Ballroom will showcase Rita Abrams’ 5 Star Revue, George’s Nightclub boasts the one and only Lydia Pense and Cold Blood, El Radio Fantastique will enchant audiences at The Woods in Mill Valley, Mystery Dance floats away on the Sausalito Cruising Club barge. ✹ Got a hot tip for THE BEAT? Email me at

duces us to The Magic of Living Breathing Theater, a mad, mad world where the stage manager, director, light man and actors all have personality problems while a puppet has a speech impediment. This backstage chaos, orchestrated by a punning skeleton, leads to murder and brings in an eccentric police inspector (Hoyle) who declares that the composer is decomposing. He questions the orchestra, and as the realistic and instrument-shaped marionettes give their alibis, a backstage curtain opens and beautifully costumed cardboard characters dance to live composer Nathaniel Stookey’s introduction of every musical instrument; each is given a moment to talk about its sound as well as its reputation (“everyone knows the clarinet is sneaky,” the flute is tired of doing bird calls, while the bass is tired of “only playing the boring parts”). It’s this season’s Peter and the Wolf (for children of any age), and Hoyle holds it all together with his bumbling appeal. Filmmaker Lisa Cook wanders down backstage halls and finds madness behind closed doors. As writer Lemony Snicket’s snarky characters misbehave, the Phantom Limb puppeteers pull their strings and the brass and the darker instruments make music. The Composer is Dead offers another delightful way to celebrate the season—and keep the kids (of any age) entertained. ✹ Pull Lee’s strings at DECEMBER 10-DECEMBER 16, 2010 PACIFIC SUN 29



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OPENING THIS WEEK! The Legend of Pale Male (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Fri 4:45, 6:45, 9 Sat 2:30, 4:45, 6:45, 9 Sun 2:30, 4:45, 7 (filmmaker Frederic Lilien in person at 7pm show) Mon, Tue, Thu 6:45, 9 Wed 6:45 Searchable Movie Reviews & Local Movie Times



Friday December 10 -Thursday December 16

Movie summaries by Matthew Stafford

Laughin’ Sal will scare the bejabers out of you in ‘Remembering Playland,’ showing at the Rafael Sunday afternoon. ● Black Swan (1:43) Darren Aronofsky’s gripping drama about a driven prima ballerina (Natalie Portman) facing an uncertain future. ● La Boheme (3:00) Angela Gheorghiu stars as Mimi in SFO’s production of Puccini’s torrid, tragic Left Bank opus. ● Burlesque (1:59) Christina Aguilera as a smalltown girl whose dreams of success are realized on the stage of a seedy yet majestic old burlesque house; mistress of ceremonies Cher offers plenty of jaded wisdom and over-the-top glam. ● The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (1:52) The third installment of C.S. Lewis’s fantastical epic about three kids and their adventures on the high seas. ● Due Date (1:40) Todd Philips road-trip comedy about a businessman who has to hitch a ride crosscountry with an unstable wannabe actor to get home in time for the birth of his first child; Robert Downey, Jr. stars. ● The Elixir of Love (2:45) Donizetti’s comic opera is updated to 1915 Napa Valley by SFO; sung in Italian with English subtitles. ● Fair Game (1:48) Naomi Watts as Valerie Plame, the targeted CIA agent whose investigations into Iraq’s nuclear capabilities didn’t jibe with the Bush Administration’s PR plans; Sean Penn costars as hubby-whistleblower Joe Wilson. ● Faster (1:35) Dwayne Johnson emerges from a decade behind bars with an Uzi-sized chip on his shoulder and a long list of ex-colleagues deserving of retribution; Billy Bob Thornton is the cop on his trail. ● The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (2:28) Sequel to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played With Fire finds the edgy Lisbeth Salander in hot water again, this time for the murder of her father. ● Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One The young wizard embarks on a do-or-die mission that will decide his own (predestined?) fate and ease him onto the wobbly shores of manhood to boot. ● How Do You Know James L. Brooks ensemble comedy about an aging athlete (Reese Witherspoon), her baseball-pitcher boyfriend (Owen Wilson) and the father and son (Jack Nicholson and Paul Rudd) who complicate their lives. ● I Love You Phillip Morris (1:40) Jim Carrey as an exuberantly uncloseted gay man who turns to a life of crime to spring lover Ewan McGergor from prison.

● Inside Job (1:48) Gripping documentary about the unbridled capitalism and political hanky panky that led to the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. ● The Legend of Pale Male (1:25) Charming documentary about a red-tailed hawk’s 16-year residency atop an exclusive Park Avenue apartment house. ● Love and Other Drugs (1:53) Snarky look at the pharmaceutical industry stars Hank Azaria and Jake Gyllenhaal as competing erection-drug salesmen. ● Magic Flute for Families (1:15) Kid-friendly abridged version of Mozart’s mystical opera features fantastical creatures and easy-to-follow narration. ● Megamind Cartoon comedy about a genius supervillain whose plans for world domination go awry through boredom and self-interest; Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, Brad Pitt and Ben Stiller supply the voices. ● The Metropolitan Opera: Don Carlo (5:00) Verdi’s epic musical bio of the star-crossed Spanish prince is brought to full-tonsiled life by the New York Met. ● Morning Glory (1:35) Crusty TV news veteran Harrison Ford and former beauty queen Diane Keaton clash as cohosts of a dilapidated national morning news show; Rachel McAdams costars as their long-suffering producer. ● The Next Three Days (2:02) A family man at the end of his rope plans and executes his wife’s daring prison escape; Paul Haggis directs Russell Crowe and Elizabeth Banks. ● 127 Hours (1:33) James Franco stars in the true story of a trapped rock climber whose only escape is to amputate his own arm; Danny Boyle directs. ● Remembering Playland (1:30) Bittersweet documentary looks back at San Francisco’s fondly remembered seaside amusement park. ● Secretariat (1:56) Disney biopic of the legendary racehorse and the suburban housewife who nurtured him to greatness; Diane Lane stars (as the housewife). ● The Social Network (2:00) Caustic Aaron Sorkin-David Fincher biopic of computer nerd Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, history’s youngest billionaire and “friend” to many (500 million at last count). ● Tangled (1:32) Disney musical version of the Rapunzel story in which the extensively tressed princess breaks out of her castle with a little help from a wanted bandit, a gang of thugs and an extremely dependable steed. ● The Tourist (1:43) Innocent abroad Johnny Depp gets more than he bargained for when he hooks up with mysterious stranger Angelina Jolie; Paris and Venice costar. ● Tron: Legacy Legendary video game genius Jeff Bridges has to fight his way out of the cyberkinetic universe he’s been imprisoned within for the past two decades. ● Unstoppable (1:38) Tony Scott mega-adventure about a runaway freight train, its cargo of combustible liquids and the engineer and conductor who try to stop it from destroying the next city on the timetable; Denzel Washington and Chris Pine star. ● The Warrior’s Way (1:40) Ninjas in the Old West—lots of guns and swords and special effects. Dong-gun Jang and Geoffrey Rush star. ● Yogi Bear The pic-a-nic-lovin’ grizzly saves Jellystone Park from real estate developers with a little help from Ranger Smith and, of course, Boo-Boo. ✹

›› MOViE TiMES 127 Hours (R) ★★★ Century Regency 6: Fri, Sun-Tue 12:15, 2:45, 5:15, 7:45, 10:15 Sat 5:15, 7:45, 10:15 CinéArts at Sequoia: Fri-Sat 4:40, 7, 9:30 Sun 2:15, 4:40, 7 Mon-Thu 4:40, 7 ❋ Black Swan (R) Century Regency 6: Fri-Tue 11:30, 12:50, 2:15, 3:30, 4:50, 6:15, 7:30, 8:50, 10:10 Burlesque (PG-13) Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 5, 7:50, 10:30 SatSun 11:40, 2:20, 5, 7:50, 10:30 Mon-Thu 6:45, 9:30 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 11:30, 2:15, 4:55, 7:35, 10:15 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:15, 2, 4:50, 7:45, 10:30 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri 4, 6:50, 9:25 Sat 1:15, 4, 6:50, 9:25 Sun 1:15, 4, 6:50 Mon-Thu 4, 6:50 ❋ The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (PG) Century Cinema: Fri-Wed 11, 1:50, 4:40, 7:30, 10:15 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 11:45, 1:15, 2:25, 4, 5:05, 6:45, 7:55, 9:30, 10:30; 3D showtimes at 11, 12:30, 1:45, 3:15, 4:30, 6, 7:15, 8:45, 10 Century Rowland Plaza: Fri 11, 1:45, 4:30, 7:15, 10; 3D showtimes at 12:15, 3, 5:45, 8:30 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 12:45, 1:30, 3:50, 4:50, 6:40, 7:30, 9:20 Sun-Thu 12:45, 1:30, 3:50, 4:50, 6:40, 7:30 Due Date (R) Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 2:55, 7:40 The Elixir of Love (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sat 10am Fair Game (PG-13) ★★1/2 Century Regency 6: Fri-Tue 11, 1:45, 4:30, 7:15, 10 CinéArts at Sequoia: Fri 5:05, 7:35, 10:05 Sat 2:30, 5:05, 7:35, 10:05 Sun 2:30, 5:05, 7:35 Mon-Thu 5:05, 7:35 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1, 4, 7:10, 9:45 Sun-Thu 1, 4, 7:10 Faster (R) Century Northgate 15: FriWed 11:15, 4:45, 10:25 The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (R) ★★★★ Rafael Film Center: Fri 4:30, 7:30 Sat-Sun 1:30, 4:30, 7:30 Mon-Tue 7:30

= New Movies This Week

Thu 8:30 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows: Part 1 (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 7, 10:15 Sat-Sun 12:15, 3:35, 7, 10:15 Mon-Thu 6:30, 9:45 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 11:50, 1, 3:10, 6:30, 7:05, 9:50 Century Rowland Plaza: 12:30, 3:45, 7, 10:15 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 12:30, 3:30, 6:30, 9:30 Sun-Thu 12:30, 3:30, 6:30 ❋ How Do You Know (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: Thu 11:59pm ❋ I Love You Phillip Morris (R) Century Regency 6: Fri-Tue 11:15, 1:50, 4:25, 7, 9:35 Inside Job (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Rafael Film Center: Fri 4, 6:30, 8:45 Sat 1:45, 4, 6:30, 8:45 Sun 1:45, 6:30, 8:45 Mon-Tue 6:30, 8:45 Wed 6:30 Thu 6:15 La Boheme (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Thu 7 ❋ The Legend of Pale Male (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Fri 4:45, 6:45, 9 Sat 2:30, 4:45, 6:45, 9 Sun 2:30, 4:45, 7 (filmmaker Frederic Lilien in person at 7pm show) Mon, Tue, Thu 6:45, 9 Wed 6:45 Love & Other Drugs (R) Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 7:30, 10:10 Sat-Sun 11:30, 2:10, 4:50, 7:30, 10:10 Mon-Thu 6:50, 9:40 Century Regency 6: Fri-Tue 11:05, 1:55, 4:35, 7:20, 10:05 CinéArts at Marin: Fri 12:45, 4:10, 7:20, 10 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri 4:15, 7, 9:30 Sat 1:30, 4:15, 7, 9:30 Sun 1:30, 4:15, 7 MonThu 4:15, 7 ❋ Magic Flute for Families (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sun noon Megamind (PG) ★★1/2 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 12:05, 2:30, 4:50, 7:10, 9:40 ❋ The Metropolitan Opera: Don Carlo (Not Rated) Century Regency 6: Sat 9:30am CinéArts at Marin: Sat 9:30am CinéArts at Sequoia: Sat 9:30am Morning Glory (PG-13) Century

Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 4:20, 10:20 Tiburon Playhouse 3: 7:10 Sat-Sun 1:45, 7:10 The Next Three Days (PG-13) ★★★ Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 1:50, 7:30 ❋ Remembering Playland (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sun 4:15 (filmmaker Tom Wyrsch in person) Secretariat (PG) ★★1/2 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 11:55, 5, 10:05 The Social Network (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 7:20, 10:10 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri-Sat 4:30, 9:40 Sun-Thu 4:30 Tangled (PG) ★★★ Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 5:15, 7:40, 10:05 Sat-Sun 12, 2:30, 5:15, 7:40, 10:05 Mon-Thu 7, 9:35 Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 12, 2:20, 4:40; 3D showtimes at 11:25, 1:55, 4:25, 6:55, 9:25 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:45, 2:15, 4:45, 7:10, 9:40 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1:15, 4:15, 6:45, 9:10 Sun-Thu 1:15, 4:15, 6:45 ❋ The Tourist (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 12:15, 1:35, 2:50, 4:15, 5:25, 7, 8, 9:35, 10:35 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:50, 2:25, 5, 7:35, 10:10 Lark Theater: Fri, Thu 5, 7:10, 9:20 Sat 2:45, 5, 7:10, 9:20 Sun 3:15, 5:30 Mon-Tue 5, 7:10 Wed 2:15, 4:20 ❋ Tron: Legacy (PG) Century Northgate 15: Thu 11:59pm Century Rowland Plaza: Thu 11:59pm Unstoppable (PG-13) ★★ Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 12:25, 5:10, 10:05 Century Rowland Plaza: 12:05, 2:35, 5:10, 7:40, 10:05 The Warrior’s Way (R) Century Northgate 15: Fri-Wed 2:40, 7:45 Century Rowland Plaza: 12, 2:30, 4:55, 7:30, 9:55 ❋ Yogi Bear (PG) Century Northgate 15: Thu 11:59pm

Showtimes can change after we go to press. Please call theater to confirm schedules.

›› THEATERS CinéArts at Marin 101 Caledonia St., Sausalito • 331-0255 CinéArts at Sequoia 25 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley • 388-4862 Cinema 41 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera • 924-6505 Fairfax 9 Broadway, Fairfax • 453-5444 Lark 549 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur • 924-5111 Larkspur Landing 500 Larkspur Landing Cir., Larkspur • 800-326-3264 Northgate 7000 Northgate Dr., San Rafael • 800-326-3264 Playhouse 40 Main St., Tiburon • 435-1234 Rafael Film Center 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael • 454-1222 Regency 80 Smith Ranch Rd., Terra Linda • 479-5050 Rowland 44 Rowland Way, Novato • 800-326-3264

Natalie Portman enters the dark side in ‘Black Swan.’



F R I D AY D E C E M B E R 1 0 — F R I D AY D E C E M B E R 1 7 Pacific Sun‘s Community Calendar Don’t miss Allison Miller’s explosive Boom Tic Boom on Dec. 15 at 142 Throck.

Highlights from our online community calendar— great things to do this week in Marin

Check out our Online Community Calendar for more listings, spanning more weeks, with more event information.

Live music 12/10: Christmas Jug Band (Four Elves Named Mo). 7-10pm. No cover. Station House Cafe, 11180 Highway One, Point Reyes Station. 663-1515. 12/10: High Beams With Eric Levy of Garag Mahal. 9 p.m. $10. 19 Broadway, 17 Broadway, Fairfax. 459-1091. 12/10: Mad Maggies Celtic, Americana. 9 p.m. Smiley’s Schooner Saloon and Hotel, 41 Wharf Road, Bolinas. 868-1311. 12/10: Metal Shop plus The Butlers 80s rock. 9pm. $10-13. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. 12/10: Phillip Percy Williams Jazz vocalist. With Judy Hall, piano. 6:30-9:30pm. Free. McInnis Park Club Restaurant, 350 Smith Ranch Road, San Rafael. 491-5990. 12/11: Em K. Solo acoustic guitar. 7-10pm. Saylor’s Restaurant & Bar, 2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-1512. 12/11: Living Proof Rock. 10pm. No cover. Finnegan’s Marin, 877 Grant Ave., novato. 12/11: Nick Gravenites Blues Band Chicago blues. 9:30pm. $18-21. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. 12/11: The Tickets Band, Stone Foxes Blues, rock. 9pm. $10. 19 Broadway, 17 Broadway Blvd., Fairfax. 459-1091 .

12/12:‘Saluting Sinatra On His 95th Birthday’ With Jonathan Poretz and the Swingin’ Night Orchestra. 7 p.m. $25-35. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. 12/12: The Christmas Jug Band Seasonal convergence of many S.F. Bay Area luminaries. 2pm. $12-21. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley.


12/12: Youth Rock the Rebuild Concert Youth Musicians perform to raise funds to help rebuild schools in Haiti. Enjoy food and music and give generously to the cause. 1:30-5pm. Free, donations encouraged. The Woods Music Hall, 19 Corte Madera Ave., Mill Valley. www.youthrocktherebuild. com/event-day-info/ 12/14: EmK Solo acoustic guitar. 7-10pm. No cover. Panama Hotel & Restaurant, 4 Bayview St., San Rafael. 457-3993.

12/14: Mari Mack and Livin’ Like Kings “Some Kinda Blues.” Bluerose Roadhouse every Tuesday night at the Belrose. 8-10pm. Belrose Theatre, 1415 5th Ave, San Rafael. 332-2755. 12/14: Noel Jewkes Quartet Jazz. 7-10pm. No cover. Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Dr., gate 5, Sausalito. 945-9016.

12/15: Allison Miller’s Boom Tic Boom With Myra Melford, piano; Allison Miller, drums; Todd Sickafoose, bass; Jenny Scheinman, violin. 8 p.m. $18-21. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600.

12/16: Audrey Moira Shimkas Quartet Jazz, Brazilian, pop. 7:30pm. No cover. Seahorse, 305 Harbor Dr., gate 5, Sausalito. 487-8331. 12/16: Deborah Winters With with Jean Michel Hure. 7-10pm. No cover. Panama Hotel & Restaurant, 4 Bayview St., San Rafael. 457-3993. www. 12/16: The Kevin Russell Projekt Motor City style blues, rock and soul. 8pm. $12-15. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. 12/16: The Sing Strings Scheherazade Stone, voice; Brian Gore, guitar. With special guest Edgardo Cambon. 8 p.m. $18-21. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600.

BEST BET Bless us, every one!

Step back in time to the quaint and whimsical world of Charles Dickens’ London at the 32nd annual GREAT DICKENS CHRISTMAS FAIR. Three acres of San Francisco’s Cow Palace are transformed into blocks of Victorian Christmas for the delight of young and old. Seven hundred Dickens characters roam the “streets, over 100 vendors are available for holiday shopping, five pubs serve up ales to quench any holiday thirst, while activities for the kiddos are sure to keep them grinning. It’s all this weekend and next at the Cow Palace, 2600 Geneva Ave., Daly City, on Saturday and Sunday, 11am-7pm. $12-$25. 800/510-1558.—Dani Burlison 32 PACIFIC SUN DECEMBER 10 - DECEMBER 16, 2010

12/16: Wanda Stafford Quartet Dinner jazz. Also on Dec. 23 and 30. 6-9pm. No cover. Jasons Restaurant, 300 Drakes Landing Road, Greenbrae. 925-0808. 12/17: Lauralee Brown and Company Jazz. 7-10pm. Saylor’s Restaurant & Bar, 2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-1512.

12/17: Narada Michael Walden’s 14th Annual Holiday Extravaganza “Celebrating the Spirit of the Holidays.” With special guests including Clarence Clemons, Jeanie Tracy, Dale ‘Satchmo’ Powers, Narada Michael Walden Band, Lydia Pense and others. Proceeds will benefit the Narada Michael Walden Foundation and 142 Throckmorton Theatre’s Public Outreach Programs. 8 p.m. $60-85. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600.

12/17: Narada Michael Walden’s 14th Annual Holiday Extravaganza “Celebrating the Spirit of the Holidays.” 8 p.m. $60-85. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. 12/17: The Christmas Jug Band Local favorites return for an annual don’t-miss performance. 8:30pm. $20-35. Palm Ballroom, 100 Yacht Club Dr,, San Rafael. 389-5072. 12/17: Wall Street Eight-piece, high-energy dance music. 9:30pm. $12-15. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262.

Concerts 12/10-11: Mayflower Community Chorus “Holiday Magic.” 30th anniversary show. 8 p.m. $5-$17. Showcase Theater, 10 Ave. of the Flags, San Rafael. 499-6800. 12/11-12: Marin Oratorio Choir Hadyn’s “The Seasons.” 8pm Dec. 11; 3pm Dec. 12. $15-20. College of Marin, Laurel & Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Kentfield. 485-9385.

12/11: AcUUstic Cafe Chamber Ensemble Reinecke, Dvorak, Haydn, and Shostakovic played by Hans Brightbill and Frank Lahorgue and friends. 7:30-9:30pm. $5-10. Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marin, 240 Channing Way, San Rafael.

12/11: Novato Music Association Chorus “Celebrate the Season.” Annual concert series with holiday sing-a-longs and traditional carols. 2pm.

$5-18. St. Vincent’s Chapel, 1 St. Vincent’s Dr., San Rafael. 892-6553. 12/12: Russian Chamber Orchestra Alexander Vereshagin conducts works by Rimsky-Korsakov, Mozart and Grieg. Mariya Borozina, violin. 3pm. $18-22. Mt Tamalpais Methodist Church, 410 Sycamore Ave., Mill Valley. 664-1760.

Theater/Auditions 12/10:‘A Christmas Memory’ Candlelight Performance of Truman Capote’s classic Christmas story. Coffee and dessert reception follow. 7-9pm. $25. St. John’s Episcopal Church, 14 Lagunitas Ave., Ross. 456-1102.

12/16-19: Ross Valley Players Holiday Variety Show “Holiday Treat.” Seasonal variety show with music, dance, holiday classics, sing-along and comedy. 8 p.m. Dec. 16-18; 2 p.m. Dec. 19. $10-20. Ross Valley Players Barn Theatre, 30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Ross. 456-9555. Through 12/12:‘Pride and Prejudice’ Jane Austen’s classic tale brought to the stage by the Ross Valley Players. Directed by Phoebe Moyer. 8pm Fri.-Sat; 7:30pm Thurs; 2pm Sun. $15-25. Ross Valley Players Barn Theatre, 30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Ross. 456-9555.

Through 12/17:‘A Christmas Carol: The Musical’ The Novato Theater Company presents its own family friendly musical adaptation of a holiday classic. 8pm. $10-18. Novato Theater Company Playhouse, 484 Ignacio Blvd., Novato. 883-4498.

Comedy 12/15: Michael Winslow with host Del Van Dyke Winslow is noted for his appearances in the “Police Academy” movies and his voiceover work on “Robot Chicken” and “Family Guy.” 8pm. $20. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262.

Art 12/10-01/16:‘Roadside Distractions’ Eric Engstrom, new works. “Into the Deep.” Group exhibition with works by Susan Brayton, Pam Fabry, Susan Sasso, Wen-Hui Shen and Ayumi Kie


Lunch & Dinner

Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m wearing a green velvet costume. It doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t get any worse than this. Just listening to the voice of David Sedaris sharing his story, SANTALAND DIARIES, is enough to get anyone in touch with the inner bah, humbug! with side-splitting, roaring laughter. Santaland Diaries, Sedarisâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hysterical firsthand account of working as Crumpet the Elf alongside Santa and other elves in Macyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Herald Square, is brilliant. For anyone out there fantasizing of luring Sedaris in for a personalized reading of this holiday favorite, get in line. In the meantime, San Rafael will see two nights of Santaland Diaries right smack-dab in the middle of downtown. With an adaptation by Joe Mantello, Bay Area actor David Yen reenacts the hilarious story in a one-man Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s tea and Crumpet with David Yen this weekend in performance this weekend only. Sponsored by the San Rafael. Marin Arts Council and Crazy Elves, the program may not be suitable for kids. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s David Sedaris material, after all! Marin Arts Council Gallery, 906 Fourth St., San Rafael. Saturday, Dec. 11 at 8pm and Sunday, Dec. 12 at 2pm.$20-$25. 415/666-2442.â&#x20AC;&#x201D;Dani Burlison

Sat & Sun Brunch


12/11 and 18: Introduction to Mandala Drawing With Lillian Sizemore. Beginners welcome. No meditation, art or drawing experience needed. RSVP. 3-5:30pm. $32-40. Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Hanlon Center for the Arts, 616 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley. 388-4331.

12/11-12: 14th Annual Art Works Downtown Open Studios Featuring over 40 artists who welcome you to their studio. With original art, holiday gifts, live music. Parking validation available for this event. 11am-5pm. Free. Art Works Downtown, 1325-1337 Fourth St., San Rafael. 451-8119. 12/11-12: Holiday Indie Craft Show Bazaar Bizarre San Francisco will feature 150 carefully juried artists and designers. Noon-10pm. Free admission. Herbst Pavilion, Fort Mason Center, Marina Blvd., San Francisco. 684-8447. www. 12/14: Art in the Afternoon Interactive monthly gatherings to share photographs, take field trips and discuss perception and creativity with the camera (digital or film). For more information, call 388-4331. 2-4pm. $5. Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Hanlon Center for the Arts, 616 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley.

12/15: Wire Sculptures and Ornaments in Light With Sha Sha Higby. Learn about techniques used by Higby in her costumes design. Bring your

12/16: Salami Factory Annual Holiday Open Studio Featuring paintings, jewelry, leather goods and more. 6-9pm. Free. The Salami Factory Artist Studios, 1599 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Fairfax, 457-5150.

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Myra Melford-Piano, Allison Miller-Drums, Todd Sickafoose-Bass Special Guest Jenny Scheinman-Violin

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7EDNESDAYs$ECsPM Allison Millerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Boom Tic Boom

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Weissbuch. Opening Reception: 3-5pm Dec. 12. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Talk 3pm Jan. 9. 11am-5pm. Free. Gallery Route One, 11101 Highway One, Point Reyes Station. 663-1347. 12/10:â&#x20AC;&#x153;Falkirk 100â&#x20AC;? Silent Art Auction 100 pieces of art by 100 artists. Artworks are small and affordable with starting bids of $50. Proceeds benefit Falkirkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s galleries and programs. 5-8pm. $10-20 donation Falkirk Cultural Center, 1408 Mission Ave., San Rafael. 485-3328. 12/10: 2nd Fridays Art Walk | San Rafael Join Art Works Downtown and numerous merchants up and down Fourth St. for art shows, gallery receptions, open studios, refreshments and inspiration. 5-8pm. Free. Various locations, Downtown Fourth St., San Rafael. 451-8119. www.artworksdowntown. org/2ndFridays.html 12/10: Lorna Stephens and Becky Foust Part of the Art Walk Friday. Book reception with refreshments and art works for sale. 5-8pm. Free. Rebound Bookstore, 1611 4th St., San Rafael,. 482-0550. www.

Reservations Advised!

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4HURSDAYs$ECsPM The Sing Strings Scheherazade Stone and Brian Gore forge two musical styles into emotive and mesmerizing songs for voice and guitar - with special guest Edgardo Cambon

&RIDAYs$ECsPM Narada Michael Waldenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 14th Annual Holiday Extravaganza Celebrating the Spirit of the Holidays!

3ATURDAYs$ECsPM Pink Floyd in the 70â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 3UNDAYs$ECsPM Maria Muldaurâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas Show Maria Muldaur and band highlighting her collection of hip, rare gems in the Blues & Jazz idioms

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Talks/Lectures 12/10: Is There Life After Death? Hear firsthand stories of near-death experiences and the life transformations that these individuals have gone through as a result. 7:30-10pm. $20 suggested donation. Sunrise Center, 645 Tamalpais Dr., Suite A, Corte Madera. 924-7824. www. 12/11: Leda Sanford Sanford discusses her memoir â&#x20AC;&#x153;Pure Moxie.â&#x20AC;? 4-6pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. www.

12/13: Change and Transition Workshop Develop new attitudes and challenge yourself to move forward with change. Five-part workshop series held every other Monday, starting Nov. 29. 7-9pm. Donation. Unity of Marin, 600 Palm Dr., Novato. 596-5033.

Readings 12/10: Apprehension into Action Nina Lesowitz discusses â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Courage Companion: How to Live Life with True Power.â&#x20AC;? 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. 12/10: Hiking and Riding the Pt.Reyes Trails Dennis Portnoy will read from â&#x20AC;&#x153;Riding the Pt. Reyes Equestrian Trailsâ&#x20AC;? and giving a slide show presentation. 7-9pm. Free. San Geromino Community Center, 6350 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., San Geronimo. 922-3567. 12/10: Wendell Potter Potter presents â&#x20AC;&#x153;Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR Is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans.â&#x20AC;? 7pm. Free. Book Passage,

Music, Dining, Dancing... Fun! FRI DEC 10

Metal Shop plus The Butlers


The Nick Gravenites Blues Band


[80â&#x20AC;&#x2122;S PARTY]


Michael Winslow

with host Del Van Dyke [COMEDY]

Just a quick, scenic 45 minute drive from Marin! DEC 11


DEC 16

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DEC 18


JAN 28



The Kevin Russell Projekt


Wall Street


JAN 29



The Monophonics




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All shows 21 & over


! 44(%"%!#( ,)6%-53)# Thursday, Fridays & Saturdays 9pm-1am Fri Dec. 10

MAD MAGGIES 9pm-1am | Celtic, Ska, Cajun

Sat Dec. 11 DGIIN

9pm-1am | French Gypsy Funk

Sun Dec. 12 OPEN MIC w/Cheyenne 8pm-12am

Mon Dec. 13 MON. NITE LIVE

8pm-12am | Reggae, Spin

Wed Dec. 15 LARRYâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S KARAOKE 8pm-12am

Thu Dec. 16 BESO NEGRO

8pm-12am | Gypsy-Jazz Duo

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51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. 12/11: A Childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas in Wales A dramatic reading of the Dylan Thomas classic. Performed by the Rebound Players: Roy Mash, Colm Martin, Joel Eis and Margaret Stawowy. 8-9:30pm. $8. Rebound Bookstore, 1611 4th St., San Rafael. 482-0550. 12/11: Fertility Foods Local author Cindy Bailey talks about â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Fertile Kitchen Cookbook: Simple Recipes for Optimizing Your Fertility.â&#x20AC;? 1pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. 12/11: Later Life Love Carol Denker talks about â&#x20AC;&#x153;Autumn Romance: Stories and Portraits of Love After 50.â&#x20AC;? 11am. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. 12/14:â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;A Childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas in Walesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Dramatic reading of the Dylan Thomas classic. Performed by the Rebound Players. Refreshments served. 7-9pm. Free. Larkspur Library, 450 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur. 927-5005. 12/15:â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Transforming Through 2012â&#x20AC;&#x2122; Debra Giusti, Marilyn Schlitz and Steve Beherman discuss â&#x20AC;&#x153;Transforming Through 2012: Leading Perspectives on the New Global Paradigm,â&#x20AC;? an anthology of minds looking forward into the future. 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960.

Film Events 12/10-16: The Legend of Pale Male Documentary. Filmmaker Frederic Lilien followed Pale Maleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s story for 16 years. (US 2010) 85 min. 6:15pm. $5.50-10.25. Smith Rafael Film Center, 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael. 454-1222. 12/11: Sammy Hagar Film Premiere Benefit Night Get a sneak preview of Sammyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new movie â&#x20AC;&#x153;Go there once, Be there twice.â&#x20AC;? Come early for live Mariachi music with tacos and margaritas and then stay after the movie for music by Sammy Hagar and the Wabos along with special guests. All proceeds benefit Homeward Bound, Ritter Center and 142 Throckmorton scholarship fund. 7 p.m. $100. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. 12/11: Verdiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Don Carloâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; MET Opera HD Broadcast. Director Nicholas Hytner makes his Met debut with this new production of Verdiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s beautiful and ambitious opera 9:30am-1pm. $30. Lark Theater, 549 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur. 924-5111. 12/12:â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Remembering Playlandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Bay Area filmmaker Tom Wyrsch will present and discuss his nostalgic historical documentary on Playland at the Beach, San Franciscoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s now-extinct 10-acre seaside amusement park. 4:15pm. $10.25 Smith Rafael Film Center, 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael. 454-1222. 12/13: Monday Night at the Movies â&#x20AC;&#x153;Fried Green Tomatoes.â&#x20AC;? (1991). Starring Jessica Tandy and Kathy Bates. 7:30-9pm. Free. Mill Valley Public Library, 375 Throckmorton, Mill Valley. 389-4292, x203.

Community Events (Misc.) 12/10: Raise the Youth Fundraiser Benefit evening for the totally awesome Marin Youth Performers features silent auction, performance highlights from last season, wine bar, treats. 7-10 p.m. $30-60. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. 12/11:â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Holly Jolly Jinglesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Van Dyke Roth directs local talent in this yearly theatrical event. Holiday poems, readings and a special candlelight singalong are sure to get you into the holiday

spirit. 7-8:30pm. Free. Tamalpais Valley Community Center, 203 Marin Ave., Mill Valley. 388-6393.

12/11: 23rd Annual Tour de Noel Christmas House Tour Shuttle vans deliver you to the doorstep of four distinctive homes decorated for the holidays. Elegant lunch and afternoon tea available. All proceeds benefit local charities. 9:15am-4pm. $30, plus $10-12 for lunch or tea. St.Johnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Episcopal Church, 14 Lagunitas Ave. at Shady Lane, Ross. 456 1102. 12/11: Breakfast/Brunch with Santa Breakfast, crafts, jumpee, Santa, and snow! Reservations needed. Seating times at 9am, 11am and 1pm. $15 per person. Tamalpais Valley Community Center, 203 Marin Ave., Mill Valley. 388-6393.

12/11: Hawaiian Holiday Craft/Bake Sale Ono-licious goodies and crafts made by lovely hula hands. Fundraiser for Hula On Productions Event also features live music, spontaneous hula and lots of aloha. 10am-4pm. Free admission. St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Parish Ctr., 409 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur. 381-1616. 12/11: Holiday Craft Fair Sustainable Fairfax & FOCAS Celebrate unique and inspiring handmade gifts crafted by local artisans. Many of them will be made of recycled and reused materials. 11am-5pm. Free admission. Fairfax Pavilion, 142 Bolinas Road, Fairfax. 455-9114.

12/11: New Village School Open House Event is geared to all interested parents. Free childcare is provided. Please RSVP. 10am-12:30pm. Free New Village School, 100 Ebbtide Ave. Suite 144, Sausalito. 289-0889. 12/14: Marin Green Drinks Environmentally minded community social gathering. Every 2nd Tuesday. 5:30-8pm. Jasonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Restaurant, 300 Drakes Landing Road, Greenbrae. 307-1866.

Kids Workshops Check Page 25 for events listing

Outdoors (Hikes & Bikes) 12/11-26: Christmas Bird Count Marin Audubon Society needs volunteers for teams to count in the field, as well as volunteers to count at their feeders. Attend an infomational talk on Dec 11 or visit our website for details. 7am-9:30pm. Free. Richardson Bay Audubon Center, 376 Greenwood Beach Road, Tiburon. 847-2837.

12/11: Poisonous Mushrooms for Dog Owners Sixth annual beginners Marin mushroom hike emphasizing poisonous and nonpoisonous mushrooms that dog owners often ask about. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t bring the dogs on this hike. 10am3pm. $25. Address given upon registration. www.

Classes/Workshops 12/10: Floral Design Holiday Centerpiece Workshop Learn how to create a beautiful table centerpiece that you will bring home with you along with the skills to recreate it. 1-4pm. $65, includes materials. Marin Society of Artists, 30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Ross. 488-6232. â&#x153;š

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BULLETIN BOARD 115 Announcements PREGNANT? CONSIDERING ADOPTION? Talk with caring agency specializing in matching Birthmothers with Families nationwide. LIVING EXPENSES PAID. Call 24/7 Abby’s One True Gift Adoptions 866-413-6293 (Void in Illinois) (AAN CAN) $1.00 Helps A Child ART STUDIO AVAILABLE Join our artist coop in San Anselmo. 415/414-4448

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Old Motorcycles WANTED! Any make or model, running or not, lost title or basketcase OK. Clean out your barn, make some room in your garage. Email address: halcyondaze@sbcglobal. net or call 415 785 7872.

240 Furnishings/ Household items Bunk bed - $400 New Hudson Bay Blanket “World Class” King size Hudson Bay Blanket, 6pt., 100% wool.”As good as it gets.” Cream colored with muted black, yellow and green horizontal stripes at ends of blanket. Best Offer. At Hudson Bay it sells for $350. For info, 415259-1803. ROYAL ALBERT/ROYAL DOULTON PIECE - $100.00


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seminars AND workshops 12/16 SINGLES WANTED Tired of spending weekends and holidays alone? Join with other singles in nine-week coed group to explore what’s keeping you single, learn intimacy skills and meet other singles. Group meets for nine Thursday evenings. 7:30-9pm. Starts Thursday, Dec. 16. Space limited. Also, Women’s Group and Coed Intimacy Groups for both single and partnered/married, as well as individual and couples sessions. Central San Rafael. For more information, call Renee Owen, LMFT#35255 at 415/453-8117.

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PUBLIC NOTICES 995 Fictitious Name Statement FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 2010125438 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as DESIGNS BY RITA, 1052 D LOS GAMOS RD., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94903: MARGARET ERTMAN, 1052 D LOS GAMOS RD., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94903. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on November 15, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125184 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as PFA MFG., 818 BAYSIDE CT., NOVATO, CA 94947: PAUL B FRANK, 744 SO. 13TH ST., RICHMOND, CA 94804; GEOFF FRANK, 818 BAYSIDE CT., NOVATO, CA 94947. This business is being conducted by a general partnership. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on October 13, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 2010125398 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as SAGE REALTY ASSOCIATES, 523 FOURTH ST. #200, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: REALTY BROKERAGE SOLUTIONS, 523 FOURTH ST. #200, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by a corporation. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on November 1, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 9, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125338 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as HIMALAYAN WINDOW CLEANING AND HANDY SERVICES, 270 MESA VERDE WAY, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94903: CHIMI GOMBO, 270 MESA VERDE WAY, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94903. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on October 29, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125443 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as I CAR SEARCH, 1163 FRANCISCO BLVD. EAST, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: PREDRAG D KRPAN, 22 SKYLARK DR. #319, LARKSPUR, CA 94939. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on November 16, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125255 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as BAY ST. EUROPEAN, 11 BAY ST., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: NATHAN C WALTON, 5 FLINT CT., NOVATO, CA 94949. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on October 21, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125362 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as THE SHOP AT BAY CLUB MARIN, 220 CORTE MADERA TOWN CENTER, CORTE MADERA, CA 94925: WAC RETAIL, LLC., 1 LOMBARD STREET, SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94111. This business is being conducted by a limited liability company. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on December 31, 2009. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 4, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125440 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as NEW DEAL LIQUOR LICENSE, 72

STANFORD WAY, SAUSALITO, CA 94965: NEW DEAL MOBILE, LLC., 72 STANFORD WAY, SAUSALITO, CA 94965. This business is being conducted by a limited liability company. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 15, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125474 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as FIBRENEW MARIN-SONOMA, 334 COLEMAN DR., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: WESTERN WYVERN INC., 334 COLEMAN DR., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by a corporation. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on December 13, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 19, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125453 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as SNOW WHITE CLEANERS, 915 LOOTENS PL., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: ELISA WONG, 100 WATERSIDE CIR., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94903. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 16, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 2010125434 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as TRICURRENTS INTERNATIONAL, 26 LADERMAN LANE, GREENBRAE, CA 94904: DAVID B SHENSON, 26 LADERMAN LANE, GREENBRAE, CA 94904. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on November 22, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 15, 2010. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125290 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as TRAVELLERS MAILBAG, 3020 BRIDGEWAY #101, SAUSALITO, CA 94965: MAURICE JACKSON UNDERWOOD, 13 TERNERS DRIVE #21, SAUSALITO, CA 94965. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on October 20, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on October 26, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 3, 10, 17, 24, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125514 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as VILLA INN, 1600 LINCOLN AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: MARCELLO FONIO, 1600 LINCOLN AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 30, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 3, 10, 17, 24, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125462 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as CLS EXECUTIVE SERVICES, 248 LAUREL PLACE, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: CHONA SOMMERS, 248 LAUREL PLACE, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 18, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125566 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as THE FIND, 1218 SAN ANSELMO AVE, SAN ANSELMO, CA 94960: TIMOTHY WELDON, 63 YOLANDA DR., SAN ANSELMO, CA 94960. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on December 7, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on December 7, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125556 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as SAN RAFAEL AUTO SALES, 1610 FOURTH ST., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: TUVIA SNITER, 1614 FOURTH ST., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being

conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on December 6, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125549 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as MY JUNGLE MATH, 230 REDWOOD AVE., WOODACRE, CA 94973: DOROTHY JEAN COX, 230 REDWOOD AVE., WOODACRE, CA 94973. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on December 3, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125536 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as DOGS IN THE HOUSE PET SITTING SERVICE, 301 G STREET APT. 5, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: CYNTHIA J. PARENTEAU, 301 G STREET APT. 5, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on June 2003. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on December 2, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 201025545 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as GALLI & GALLI, 700 LARKSPUR LANDING CIRCLE SUITE 234, LARKSPUR, CA 94939: PETER O GALLI, 700 LARKSPUR LANDING CIRCLE SUITE 234, LARKSPUR, CA 94939; FRANK C GALLI, 700 LARKSPUR LANDING CIRCLE SUITE 234, LARKSPUR, CA 94939. This business is being conducted by a co-partners. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on December 3, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125546 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as STEVE FABER, YOUR LOCAL INDEPENDENT CRUISE SPECIALIST, CRUISEONE, 17 ESCALON DRIVE, MILL VALLEY, CA 94941: STEVEN FABER, 17 ESCALON DRIVE, MILL VALLEY, CA 94941. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on February 1, 2011. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on December 3, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 2010125437 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as ALOJAH DESIGNS, 1385 SIR FRANCIS DRAKE BLVD., SAN ANSELMO, CA 94960: KEALA VANDYCK, 1385 SIR FRANCIS DRAKE BLVD., SAN ANSELMO, CA 94960. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on November 15, 2010. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on November 15, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125498 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as PREMIER YORKIE, 568 SEAVER DRIVE, MILL VALLEY, CA 94941: RYAN DEBATTISTA, 568 SEAVER DRIVE, MILL VALLEY, CA 94941. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on November 1, 2010. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 24, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125479 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as CALIFORNIA MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION SERVICE, 400 TAMAL PLAZA, SUITE 405, CORTE MADERA, CA 94925: JAMES R. PARROTT, 64 MOHAWK AVE., CORTE MADERA, CA 94925. This business is being conducted by an individual. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 22, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010)






by Ly nd a R ay

Week of December 9 - 15, 2010

ARIES (March 20 - April 19) You awake on Friday determined to get your seasonal chores done over the weekend. Unfortunately, that goal may be insurmountable, as Mercury starts moving backward in your ambition house. Meantime, an escapist Pisces Moon on Saturday, Sunday and Monday would rather go to the movies than prepare for the holidays. If you do go gift shopping, you probably should avoid browsing the HDTV department. TAURUS (April 20 - May 19) Whether you are getting together with friends or planning a candlelit evening with your sweetie, the planetary emphasis on earthly pleasures ensures a lovely weekend experience. Even when work beckons, the enjoyment does not since Monday provides creative ways for getting the job done quickly. Meanwhile, you are encouraged to indulge in ethnic cuisine for the entire week. Fudge counts, as long as it has pistachios in it. GEMINI (May 20 - June 20) For the last time this year, your ruler (curious Mercury) decides to spin around and go in the other direction. This provides a unique viewpoint for buying holiday gifts. But if those gifts are technical or mechanical in nature, they may not operate quite the way you planned. Tuesday’s impulsive Aries Moon may cause you to blurt out something you will later regret. So, be careful. And around small children, do not challenge the existence of Santa. CANCER (June 21 - July 21) “Know-it-all” Mars and “don’t-mess-with-me” Pluto are opposing your sign, causing difficultly in your one-on-one relationships, while communicative Mercury is doing his best to keep the discussion civil. The problem, of course, is that Mercury starts moving retrograde this week. Meanwhile, the vain Sun has decided you need to shape up in time for the holidays. Fortunately, since you won’t be able to park within a mile of any store or restaurant, this won’t be hard. LEO (July 22 - August 22) Lovable Venus in your house of sentimentality gives you fond feelings for family members—even your stingy rich cousin who shops the Dollar Store for your gift. Meantime, the recent plan to revise your diet simply cannot stay on track this week. This is not surprising since the holidays provide more temptation than any mortal can withstand for long. As for the weekend, the mushy Moon has an intimate effect on your love life. VIRGO (August 23 - September 21) That your ruler (clever Mercury) starts moving retrograde just when you’re trying to prepare for the holidays is bothersome. Allow extra hours for everything related to transportation and communication, which does not bode well for being on time for appointments or getting holiday cards written. (Don’t expect your cell phone to cooperate either.) Fortunately, your sweetie continues to be in a good humor. Chalk one up for jolly Jupiter in your relationship house. LIBRA (September 22 - October 22) Sometimes the pressure of getting ready for the holidays can diminish the joy. You are especially sensitive to being out of balance, which means you must make an effort to level the playing field. So, for every time you say “sorry, no” when friends ask you to meet for coffee, you must say “yes” to an invitation for holiday cocktails. Or vice versa—depending on whether you want to be wired on caffeine or relaxed on libations... SCORPIO (October 23 - November 21) A weekend with the Moon in the imaginative sign of Pisces enhances your creativity. If you’re still wondering what to buy for gifts, consider making them instead, ensuring that they are unique and not returnable. Meanwhile, sociable Venus in your sign encourages you to experience the holidays as they are meant to be experienced—spending evenings with friends and family or going out to share festivities with total strangers. Go. You can have your “alone time” in January. SAGITTARIUS (November 22 - December 20) Thanks to the influence of spontaneous Uranus on your ruler, free-spirited Jupiter, your solar return chart indicates an upcoming year of surprises and serendipitous experiences. Obviously, this could be the start of something exciting. Meanwhile, you may be unusually obsessed with your value system and decide certain material things are no longer important. So, if you’re no longer attached to that Prius, you can leave it in my driveway. CAPRICORN (December 21 - January 18) Just when you were enjoying a significant boost in new ideas, clever Mercury starts moving retrograde in Capricorn. There may still be lots of ideas, but they may not make very much sense to anyone but you. The continued journey of rambunctious Mars through your sign makes you uncharacteristically boisterous. Add the extra fervor of passionate Pluto and you are undeniably lively. Good for you, Cap. After all, it IS the season to be jolly. AQUARIUS (January 19 - February 17) A predominance of watery energy surrounding you makes you feel as if you’re alone in your ability to be objective. In truth, your objectivity is now tinged by your own enhanced intuition, which has been in development for the last 12 years. In effect, you are like a copper pan calling a copper kettle...copper; or perhaps a closer analogy, a fortuneteller calling a palm reader...psychic. Get used to it. PISCES (February 18 - March 19) It was recently mentioned that the Pisces forecast has been overly positive—I assure you, no bribery was involved. The presence of expansive Jupiter and spontaneous Uranus in Pisces is enough to cancel out most problems caused by the demanding Sun in your career house and limiting Saturn in your house of taxes and bank loans. However, for those of you who feel that your professional life is overwhelming and your bank has no compassion, now you know why. ✹ Email Lynda Ray at or check out her website at 38 PACIFIC SUN DECEMBER 10 – DECEMBER 16, 2010

FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125471 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as ONA GALLERY, 27 JORDAN ST. SUITE B, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: BRADON STIEG, 27 JORDAN ST. SUITE B, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901; SARA STIEG, 27 JORDAN ST. SUITE B, SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by a husband & wife. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on November 19, 2010. This statement was filed with the County ClerkRecorder of Marin County on November 19, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 201025388 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as SF WATER TAXI; MARIN WATER TAXI; SAUSALITO WATER TAXI; TIBURON WATER TAXI; NAPA WATER TAXI; WINE COUNTRY WATER TAXI; ANGEL ISLAND WATER TAXI, 83 SAINT THOMAS WAY, TIBURON, CA 94920: JEFF MOSELEY, 83 SAINT THOMAS WAY, TIBURON, CA 94920. This business is being conducted by a limited liability company. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 8, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125482 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as SAPPHIRE BRANDS, 1717 FIFTH AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: VINUM WINE SALES, LLC., 1717 FIFTH AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by a limited liability company. Registrant has not yet begun to transact business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein. This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 22, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010) FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 125494 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as VITRUM WINES; VITRUM WINE WORKS; BLACK DIAMOND SPIRITS, 1717 FIFTH AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901: VINUM WINE SALES, LLC., 1717 FIFTH AVE., SAN RAFAEL, CA 94901. This business is being conducted by a limited liability company. Registrant began transacting business under the fictitious business name(s) listed herein on March 29, 2010 . This statement was filed with the County Clerk-Recorder of Marin County on November 23, 2010. (Publication Dates: December 10, 17, 24, 31, 2010)

997 All Other Legals ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE FOR CHANGE OF NAME SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FOR THE COUNTY OF MARIN. No. CIV 1005920. TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: Petitioner IVA TRINKA filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows: IVA TRINKA TO SHAKTI PADMINI. THE COURT ORDERS that all persons interested in this matter shall appear before this court at the hearing indicated below to show cause, if any, why the petition for change of name should not be granted. Any person objecting to the name changes described above must file a written objection that includes the reasons for the objection at least two court days before the matter is scheduled to be heard and must appear at the hearing to show cause why the petition should not be granted. If no written objection is timely filed, the court may grant the petition without a hearing. NOTICE OF HEARING: December 22, 2010, 8:30 AM,

Dept. J, Superior Court of California, County of Marin, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael, CA 94913-4988. A copy of this ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE shall be published at least once each week for four successive weeks prior to the date set for hearing on the petition in the following newspaper of general circulation, printed in the county of Marin: PACIFIC SUN. Date: November 9, 2010 /s/ Vera A. Adams, JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT (Pacific Sun: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE FOR CHANGE OF NAME SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FOR THE COUNTY OF MARIN. No. CIV 1005949. TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: Petitioner JENNIFER THUY NGA YORK CARR filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows: JENNIFER THUY NGA YORK CARR to THUY NGA YORK CARR. THE COURT ORDERS that all persons interested in this matter shall appear before this court at the hearing indicated below to show cause, if any, why the petition for change of name should not be granted. Any person objecting to the name changes described above must file a written objection that includes the reasons for the objection at least two court days before the matter is scheduled to be heard and must appear at the hearing to show cause why the petition should not be granted. If no written objection is timely filed, the court may grant the petition without a hearing. NOTICE OF HEARING: December 29, 2010, 8:30 AM, Dept. J, Room J, Superior Court of California, County of Marin, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael, CA 94913-4988. A copy of this ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE shall be published at least once each week for four successive weeks prior to the date set for hearing on the petition in the following newspaper of general circulation, printed in the county of Marin: PACIFIC SUN. Date: November 10, 2010 /s/ Verna A. Adams, JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT (Pacific Sun: November 19, 26; December 3, 10, 2010) NOTICE OF PETITION TO ADMINISTER ESTATE OF: EDWARD JOHN SCHAEFER. Case No. PR-1006079. To all heirs, beneficiaries, creditors, contingent creditors and persons who may otherwise be interested in the will or estate, or both, of EDWARD JOHN SCHAEFER. A PETITION FOR PROBATE has been filed by: CHERYL DUNNE in the Superior Court of California, County of MARIN. THE PETITION FOR PROBATE requests that CHERYL DUNNE be appointed as personal representative to administer the estate of the decedent. THE PETITION requests the decedent’s will and codicils, if any, be admitted to probate. The will and any codicils are available for examination in the file kept by the court. THE PETITION requests authority to administer the estate under the Independent Administration of Estates Act. (This authority will allow the personal representative to take many actions without obtaining court approval. Before taking certain very important actions, however, the personal representative will be required to give notice to interested persons unless they have waived notice or consented to the proposed action.) The independent administration authority will be granted unless an interested person files an objection to the petition and shows good cause why the court should not grant the authority. A HEARING on the petition will be held in this court as follows: December 20, 2010 at 8:30 a.m. in Dept: H, Room: H, of the Superior Court of California, Marin County, located at Superior Court of California, County of Marin, 3501 Civic Center Drive, Room 113, San Rafael, CA 94913-4988. IF YOU OBJECT to the granting of the petition, you should appear at the hearing and state your objections or file written objections with the court before the hearing. Your appearance may be in person or by your attorney. IF YOU ARE A CREDITOR or a contingent creditor of the decedent, you must file your claim with the

court and mail a copy to the personal representative appointed by the court within four months from the date of first issuance of letters as provided in section 9100 of the California Probate Code. The time for filing claims will not expire before four months from the hearing date noticed above. YOU MAY EXAMINE the file kept by the court. If you are a person interested in the estate, you may file with the court a Request for Special Notice (form DE-154) of the filing of an inventory and appraisal of estate assets or of any petition or account as provided in Probate Code section 1250. A Request for Special Notice form is available from the court clerk. Petitioner: CHERYL DUNNE, 1 Sandy Creek Way, Novato, CA 94947; (415)892-8926. (Publication Dates: November 26; December 3, 10, 2010) ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE FOR CHANGE OF NAME SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FOR THE COUNTY OF MARIN. No. CIV 1005971. TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: Petitioner KAROL RENEE JANSSEN GRINSELL filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows: KAROL RENEE JANSSEN GRINSELL to KAROL RENEE JANSSEN. THE COURT ORDERS that all persons interested in this matter shall appear before this court at the hearing indicated below to show cause, if any, why the petition for change of name should not be granted. Any person objecting to the name changes described above must file a written objection that includes the reasons for the objection at least two court days before the matter is scheduled to be heard and must appear at the hearing to show cause why the petition should not be granted. If no written objection is timely filed, the court may grant the petition without a hearing. NOTICE OF HEARING: December 27, 2010, 8:30 AM, Dept. J, Superior Court of California, County of Marin, 3501 Civic Center Drive #116, San Rafael, CA 94903. A copy of this ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE shall be published at least once each week for four successive weeks prior to the date set for hearing on the petition in the following newspaper of general circulation, printed in the county of Marin: PACIFIC SUN. Date: February 10, 2010 /s/ VERNA A. ADAMS, JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT (Pacific Sun: November 26; December 3, 10, 17, 2010) ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE FOR CHANGE OF NAME SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FOR THE COUNTY OF MARIN. No. CIV 1006124. TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: Petitioner LESVIA MAZARIEGOS & JOEL MUNOZ filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows: LESVIA ORTENCIA MUNOZ to LESVIA ORTENCIA MUNOZ MAZARIEGOS. THE COURT ORDERS that all persons interested in this matter shall appear before this court at the hearing indicated below to show cause, if any, why the petition for change of name should not be granted. Any person objecting to the name changes described above must file a written objection that includes the reasons for the objection at least two court days before the matter is scheduled to be heard and must appear at the hearing to show cause why the petition should not be granted. If no written objection is timely filed, the court may grant the petition without a hearing. NOTICE OF HEARING: January 3, 2011, 9:00AM, Dept. L, Superior Court of California, County of Marin, 3501 Civic Center Drive, Room 113, San Rafael, CA 94903-4988. A copy of this ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE shall be published at least once each week for four successive weeks prior to the date set for hearing on the petition in the following newspaper of general circulation, printed in the county of Marin: PACIFIC SUN. Date: November 19, 2010 /s/ LYNN DURYEE, JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT (Pacific Sun: December 3, 10, 17, 24, 2010)

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›› ADViCE GODDESS® by Amy Alko n


I’ve had some good experiences with online dating, but I just can’t get over this feeling that it just isn’t natural or sexy.—Clicking For Love


People romanticize chance meetings over highly calculated search algorithms. They swoon telling the story, “If I hadn’t filled in for the night nurse the evening he lopped off his thumb...” as opposed to “If I hadn’t typed 16 very specific terms into a search engine on one of the five online dating sites I have a membership to...” People also love the idea of “the one”—that one special someone they’re supposedly fated to be with. In online dating, you’re trying to weed that special someone out of a field of thousands of other potential special someones—making the process feel about as romantic as a livestock auction. And while the stigma formerly attached to Internet dating is largely gone, this scenario still lacks is any plausible deniability about one’s intentions. In a bar, you could be there to grab a beer, but there’s no pretending you posted your profile because you were thirsty. In fact, you might as well stand in the center of town shouting, “Hi, I’m alone! Here’s how I look! Any takers? Yoo-hoo, anyone out there?” In addition to the weirdness of posting your face on an enormous bulletin board to see if anyone might end up loving you, there’s the weirdness of shopping for the love of your life in between bidding on a used tennis racket on eBay. But, with Internet dating, instead of waiting for that chance meeting, you have increase-your-chances meetings. With a few keystrokes, you can connect with countless people you probably never would’ve met, and select for the right religious beliefs, smoking habits and/or weird sex habits instead of spending hours trying to tease the answers out of some guy in a bar. Where people go wrong is in turning what should actually be called “online meeting” into online dating. The same woman who’d go home with a near stranger she met in a bar will spend weeks e-mailing a guy to assess how good his grammar is before she’ll feel safe enough to meet him. She’ll tell herself she’s vetting the guy, but what she’s probably doing is getting attached—not to the actual guy, but her idea of the guy, and maybe how smart and funny she is when she’s talking to him. Investing all this time and emotion can make it somewhat devastating when she finally meets the guy and finds that he looks wrong, talks wrong, dresses wrong and smells like rotting liver. So, sure, there are pitfalls in online dating, but it can be a great tool if you use it wisely. And when you say it seems unnatural, it’s true that there was no in the Stone Age, but humans have always tried to find partners using the best resources at hand. Go into that painted cave in Lascaux with the right archaeologist, and see if that wall doesn’t just read “Single, hairy club-dragger seeks sturdy woman for long walks on what will one day become the French Riviera...”


I’m sick of leaving a message asking a woman out and getting no response. Most recently, this happened when I left a voice-mail for a woman who’d verbally agreed to another date. Instead of no reply, I’d even prefer a lame excuse, like “Hey, in the two days since our date, I met the love of my life and don’t want to lead you on.”—On Hold


It’s called “the chase,” not the “call once and leave a message, then give up.” If you’re like a lot of guys, you ask girls out by phone message as a way of avoiding rejection. Unfortunately, you won’t avoid rejection this way; you’ll just avoid hearing it and knowing you can move on. And while no response probably means you’re being blown off, there is that slim chance that a woman accidentally erased your message. If she’s just ambivalent, and you get her on the phone, you might charm her into going out with you again. (It’s a lot easier to delete a guy than say no to him.) Never ask a girl out by voice-mail. If getting her on the line seems impossible, only leave a message asking her to call you, not asking her out. It’s a small distinction, but no response to “Hey, call me!” allows your ego to maintain the fiction that she just didn’t call you back, while none to a dinner invitation pretty much spells it out: There’s no amount of back hair you can shave or free filet mignon you can offer her to ever get her to go out with you again. ✹ © Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. Got a problem? Email or write to Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave. #280, Santa Monica, CA 90405.

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12.10.2010 issue of the Pacific Sun  

December 10, 2010 edition of the Pacific Sun Weekly

12.10.2010 issue of the Pacific Sun  

December 10, 2010 edition of the Pacific Sun Weekly