Archive for September, 2017

A Bird’s Eye View #514 – 27th September, 2017

Thursday, September 28th, 2017

Greetings one and all. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin… I am taking a short break and have flown to the UK for a couple of weeks – thats 6,000 miles away and my wings are really tired… Anyway, I have been here just a day or so and already I have been asked many, many times about what on earth is going on in Trump’s America.
For most of the last century or so, the UK, and much of Europe for that matter, but particularly the UK, was a country that adored the U.S. for its leadership in the world, its vibrant society that knew how to work hard and play hard, an enlightened view on justice for all, it’s positive attitude towards life in general, its spirit of adventure and independence, it’s willingness to step in to help (for the right reasons) impoverished nations or those faced with internal strife before anyone else, and its ability to successfully deal with a society consisting of so many diverse backgrounds, lifestyles, and cultures – arguably better than anywhere else on earth … Much of this no longer remains in the eye of folks over here. The allies of the U.S. are all confused/bemused at the current political climate in the States and cannot believe the way President* Trump conducts himself and deals with important world issues as if he is making deals to build hotels or indulging in a verbal brawl in a bar… I shared these thoughts with a Valley person earlier today and he bluntly replied, “Who gives a shit what they think?”… In my opinion that is scary and sad… More on this and other aspects of life across the pond next week…

Public Service Announcements (P.S.A.’s)… Calendars and pens at the ready…#543 – The annual Flu Shot clinic is available on Tuesday, October 3 from 11am to Noon at the Senior Center in Boonville at the Veterans Hall. It does make sense… #544 – The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have one more visit to the Valley this month. They will be here tomorrow, Thursday, September 28, from 2-4pm at the Anderson Valley Farm Supply on Highway 128, north of Philo. To avoid a line perhaps turn up at around 3pm – you will definitely be seen. New customers and their pets are always welcome and previous visitors should be aware that they can call 462-8833 and the vets will bring your pet’s charts with them – making this an even better service than it already is!… #545 – The Anderson Valley Museum is open every Saturday and Sunday from 1-4pm. Situated in The Little Red Schoolhouse next to the Elementary School on A.V. Way, visiting the Museum is a perfect thing to do in the Valley when you have a couple of hours to spare on a weekend afternoon. It is not without reason that it is generally regarded as ‘The Best Little Museum in the West’…  #546 – I believe that the Mendocino Bookmobile returns to the Valley next Tuesday, October 3. Phone 463-4694 for confirmation. They are usually here on alternate Tuesdays for 45 minutes at each of these places and times: Navarro Store 9am (for just 30 minutes before heading out to Comptche); the Floodgate 12.30pm; Philo 1.30pm; Boonville (Apple Hall) 2.30pm.… #547 – The Boonville Farmers’ Market continues each Saturday from 9.30am-noon, at the Boonville Hotel parking lot generously donated each week by community-spirited hotelier, J Schmitt. For more information, call Cindy at 895-2949… #548 – On Sunday, October 8 at 4pm, the Anderson Valley Village group has invited Maggie Watson, author of ‘A Graceful Farewell: Putting Your Affairs in Order’ to come and discuss positive ways to prepare for the end of your life, with regards to finances, health, and after death. It is something many of us could certainly benefit from knowing more about, I’m sure…
As a bonus P.S.A. here is the menu for the Community lunches over the next week in the Senior Center at the Veterans’ Building in Boonville. The Center asks for a $6 donation from seniors and charges $7 for Non-seniors… Tomorrow, Thursday, September 28, the lunch, served by Marti Titus and her crew at Noon, will be Amish Chicken with Chocolate Pecan Bars for dessert… Then, next Tuesday, October 3, the lunch will feature Meat Loaf and Mashed potatoes and gravy, followed by Peach Cobbler for dessert. All meals include vegetables, salad bar, and fruit, plus milk, coffee, tea, and lemonade. What a deal – it maybe the best value for money you’ll get all week!… And remember – ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there… Furthermore, on Thursdays the Center offers a Diabetes Workshop – in English from 1-3pm and in Spanish from 5.30-7.30pm. These are hosted by the A.V. Health Center and to register please call 707-895-3477… Meanwhile, on Tuesday and Thursday at 9am the Center offers ‘Young at Heart Exercise’ with Linda Boudoures… Thursdays at 9am it’s the Water Color Painting Group, with Kathy’s Easy-stretch Yoga class at 11am. The Senior Center Community Bus goes to Santa Rosa on the first Wednesday of the month. These trips fill up fast so don’t forget to sign up early at 489-1175… Hopefully you will be able to attend some of these events and certainly the lunches and dinners, and remember – ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there…

I’m outta here – I’ve got see a man about a sheep… So, until we talk again: be careful out there; if you break a leg don’t come running to me; stay out of the ditches; be wary of strangers with more dogs than teeth; please remember to keep your windows cracked if you leave pets in your vehicle for any amount of time; think good thoughts; ‘Keep the Faith’; try to not let life get in the way of living; may your god go with you, and may your dog go with you too… Oh, and of course, one final request, “Let us prey”… Sometimes poking, often stroking, and almost always humbly yours, Turkey Vulture – saddened but ultimately comforted in the knowledge that the old hare has safely moved to his new burrow in the sky…
p.s. You can contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at <turkeyvulture9@gmail.com>
p.p.s. Skylark – read any good books lately?… Hi, Silver Swan – behaving yourself? Hopefully not!… Everything cool with you, O.J.? Of course it is…

A Bird’s Eye View #513 – 20th September 2017

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

Greetings one and all. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin…
Having drank so much water and eaten so many salads for three days straight at the Fair, you can probably imagine that I’m inevitably not feeling very lively and creative this morning (Monday) as I contemplate my column.  As a result it will be brief…
Here’s a quick update on the evening dining scene here in the Valley that has not appeared for a few weeks… Lauren’s Restaurant sees Libby (of Libby’s Restaurant in Philo fame) as the Guest Chef on Monday evenings from 5-9pm, while their regular hours remain Thursday-Sunday, 11.30am-2.30pm for lunch, and dinner on Tuesday-Saturday, 5-9pm… Lizbby’s, the Mexican Restaurant in downtown Boonville, can be enjoyed Monday to Saturday from 10am-9pm, serving breakfast on Saturday, closed on Sunday… The Buckhorn is open on Saturdays and Sundays from 10am-midnight, serving weekend brunch each day from 10am-3pm. They are open weekdays at 11am and are closed on Tuesdays… The Boonville Hotel continues with their family-style, prix fixe menu and have now expanded their hours to Thursday thru’ Monday evenings. They cook by reservation so call (707)-895-2210… The Q and Aquarelle, formerly Aquarelle Cafe and Wine Bar, is now closed on ‘Taco’ Tuesday. They continue their ‘Santa Maria BBQ’ menu, featuring ribs and chicken, added to many of their previous favorites, from 4-8pm, Friday thru’ Monday… The Redwood Drive-In just keeps on doing what they do, with reliable hours that everyone can remember and rely on (6am-8pm every day!) – don’t forget to try the donuts… Stone and Embers in The Madrones is open from Noon to 8pm five days in succession, Thursday to Monday – now that’s keeping it simple and easy to remember!… And down in the Deep End, the Happy Hour at The Bewildered Pig has ended their Happy hour but the Sunday brunch continues for now (11am-2.30pm) and dinner is still from 5.30-9pm Thursday-Sunday… Bruxo, the brightly colored, high-end food truck is at the A.V Brewery Visitor Center on Friday and Sunday, noon to 7pm; the Boonville Hotel on Wednesday, noon to 8pm; and at Balo Winery on Thursdays… And that’s it for now – remember ‘eating out is fun’…
Public Service Announcements (P.S.A.’s)… Calendars and pens at the ready… #545 – The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have one more visit to the Valley this month, on Thursday, September 28, from 2-4pm at the Anderson Valley Farm Supply on Highway 128, north of Philo. To avoid a line perhaps turn up at around 3pm – you will definitely be seen. New customers and their pets are always welcome and previous visitors should be aware that they can call 462-8833 and the vets will bring your pet’s charts with them – making this an even better service than it already is!…… #546 – Due to the County Fair that took place last weekend, the Unity Club’s Community Lending Library, held twice-weekly at The Fairgrounds, will be closed until the first week of October – if that makes sense… #547 – The County Dump is open from 9am-4pm Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday. Dump Executive Director, Mike Mannix, rewards good customers with a star but will be very harsh with anyone thinking they can leave dead animals!…
As a bonus P.S.A. here is the menu for the Community lunches and dinners over the next week in the Senior Center at the Veterans’ Building in Boonville. The Center asks for a $6 donation from seniors for both lunches and dinners, and charges $7 for Non-seniors for lunches and $8 for the dinners… Tomorrow, Thursday, September 21, the lunch, served at Noon, will be Parmesan Cod followed by Lemon Cake… Then, next Tuesday, September 26, the evening meal served at 6pm, will feature Pork with apples with Apple Crisp for dessert. All meals include vegetables, salad bar, and fruit, plus milk, coffee, tea, and lemonade. What a deal – it maybe the best value for money you’ll get all week! And remember – ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there…

The Three-Dot lounge is closed for ‘Fair Recovery’ but we can share a few thoughts on that event from our 3-Dot regular, The Old Buzzard, in another addition to his insightful series – ‘Signs that the Apocalypse is Approaching’… Buzzard reports, “Some observations, thoughts, and opinions on the 2017 County Fair… I sat at the A.V. Historical Society and Museum booth for a time on Friday afternoon and found it strange how many folks said ‘Oh, its The Hysterical Society’ – is it that funny?… On Saturday I thoroughly enjoyed a Venezuelan Arepa (like a taco but better) that I assumed would surely be in the running for Turkey Vulture’s ‘Best Food In Show’ award… If there are no Bumper Cars – it’s not a real Carnival… Many, many teenagers spotted in groups of three and four, all staring at their phones and texting, not talking to each other. Perhaps they should be hanging around with the ones they are texting and not the clearly boring ones they are with?… Superb displays of livestock… Excellent pie competition – the ones I furtively nibbled on were outstanding… Some vitriolic comments made and received by the Republican Party booth… Too many law enforcement officers present – and why are they in large groups of five or so? Surely being in pairs would be so much more efficient, and certainly more friendly and comforting for the public whom they are there to ‘protect and serve’… The A.V. Fire and Ambulance Burger was once again Turkey Vulture’s ‘Best Food in Show’ – I agreed; the aforementioned Venezuelan Arepa was runner up; the Polish Dog from the Sausage and Curly Fries Guy came third … A metal detector at the main gate???… “Wow that’s so old!” – a local 6th grader when he saw a photo of the A.V. Museum taken in 1991… “Get a beer and grab your goat” – heard at the Friday Night Unofficial Goat judging competition… By Sunday morning only two local high school girls had run off with carnies… The Fair seemed to be significantly quieter overall, but I could be wrong… Lots of smiling faces and laughter; joyous greetings as old friends met; and a heartwarming sense of community as the County and our visitors enjoyed the ‘Best Little Fair in the West”…

I’m outta here – I’ve got see a man about a sheep… So, until we talk again: be careful out there; if you break a leg don’t come running to me; stay out of the ditches; be wary of strangers with more dogs than teeth; please remember to keep your windows cracked if you leave your pets in your vehicle for any amount of time; think good thoughts; ‘Keep the Faith’; try to not let life get in the way of living; may your god go with you, and may your dog go with you too… Oh, and of course, one final request, “Let us prey”… Sometimes poking, often stroking, and almost always humbly yours, Turkey Vulture…
p.s. You can contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at <turkeyvulture9@gmail.com>
p.p.s. Missing the Venerable Pheasant… On the sheep, Grace… Keep on humming, Hummingbird…

A Bird’s Eye View #512 – 13th September, 2017

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

Greetings one and all. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin…
Let’s start this week with another in our series, ’This Trump Thing,’ or as it had been known previously for nearly 250 years up – The U.S. Presidency… It is still baffling that Republican Senator John McCain tolerates Donald Trump in any capacity—at all—after then-candidate Trump assaulted McCain’s military record in Vietnam. The president, after all, once described avoiding sexually transmitted diseases in 1970s New York as his “personal Vietnam,” and secured five draft deferments to ensure he never had to contend with the actual struggle. However, recently, McCain called for “regular order” in Congress as it resumed its business after Labor Day. But more than that, McCain didn’t mince words about the president the body is forced to contend with: “That has never been truer than today, when Congress must govern with a president who has no experience of public office, is often poorly informed and can be impulsive in his speech and conduct. We must respect his authority and constitutional responsibilities. We must, where we can, cooperate with him. But we are not his subordinates. We don’t answer to him. We answer to the American people. We must be diligent in discharging our responsibility to serve as a check on his power. And we should value our identity as members of Congress more than our partisan affiliation.”
This is an astounding rebuke of a sitting president from a senator of his own party, perhaps unprecedented in recent history. McCain is essentially saying that the president does not know how the government functions or how a president—or really, an adult human being—is required to conduct themselves. Even more, he pinpoints a crucial issue with Trump: that because he has no understanding or regard for the Constitution or the functions of democratic government, he believes the federal government is organized like the Trump Organization. Forget checks and balances—he thinks the senators are his regional managers and the congressmen are his sales reps…

Let’s move on to the Turkey Vulture’s update on ‘Evening Dining in the Valley’… Latest business hours updates… In Boonville, The Q and Aquarelle, formerly Aquarelle Cafe and Wine Bar, has a ‘Santa Maria BBQ’ menu, featuring ribs and chicken, added to their previous favorites. New hours for the Fall are 4-8pm on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday… The Redwood Drive-In just keeps on doing what they do, with reliable hours that everyone can remember and rely on (6am-8pm every day!) – don’t forget to try the donuts… Stone and Embers in The Madrones, south of Philo, is open from Noon to 8pm five days in succession, Thursday to Monday – now that’s keeping it simple and easy to remember, for customers and owners alike!… Finally, down in the Deep End, The Bewildered Pig is open Thursday-Saturday from 5.30-9pm, and then on Sundays it’s brunch from 11am-2.30pm followed by dinner from 5.30-9pm as usual. You can check out all of their “insane!” offerings on their well-maintained Facebook page… And that’s it for now… Meanwhile, I encourage you all to eat, drink, and be merry at one of the above establishments whenever you can – remember ‘eating out is fun’…
Public Service Announcements (P.S.A.’s)… Calendars and pens at the ready… #544 – The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have two visits to the Valley this month. They will be here tomorrow, Thursday, September 14, and again on September 28, from 2-4pm at the Anderson Valley Farm Supply on Highway 128, north of Philo. To avoid a line perhaps turn up at around 3pm – you will definitely be seen. New customers and their pets are always welcome and previous visitors should be aware that they can call 462-8833 and the vets will bring your pet’s charts with them – making this an even better service than it already is!… #545 – The Anderson Valley Museum is open every Saturday and Sunday from 1-4pm. Situated in The Little Red Schoolhouse next to the Elementary School on A.V. Way, visiting the Museum is a perfect thing to do in the Valley when you have a couple of hours to spare on a weekend afternoon. It is not without reason that it is generally regarded as ‘The Best Little Museum in the West’…  #546 – I believe that the Mendocino Bookmobile returns to the Valley next Tuesday, September 19. Phone 463-4694 for confirmation. They are usually here on alternate Tuesdays for 45 minutes at each of these places and times: Navarro Store 9am (for just 30 minutes before heading out to Comptche); the Floodgate 12.30pm; Philo 1.30pm; Boonville (Apple Hall) 2.30pm.… #547 – The Boonville Farmers’ Market continues each Saturday from 9.30am-noon, at the Boonville Hotel parking lot generously donated each week by community-spirited hotelier, J Schmitt. For more information, call Cindy at 895-2949…
As a bonus P.S.A. here is the menu for the Community lunches over the next week in the Senior Center at the Veterans’ Building in Boonville. The Center asks for a $6 donation from seniors and charges $7 for Non-seniors… Tomorrow, Thursday, September 14, the lunch, served by Marti Titus and her crew at Noon, will be Beef Stew followed by Cherry Dump Cake… Then, next Tuesday, September 19, the lunch will feature Sesame Noodles with Chicken and Wendy’s Oatmeal Bars for dessert. All meals include vegetables, salad bar, and fruit, plus milk, coffee, tea, and lemonade. What a deal – it maybe the best value for money you’ll get all week!… And remember – ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there…

I’m outta here – I’ve got see a man about a sheep… So, until we talk again: be careful out there; if you break a leg don’t come running to me; stay out of the ditches; be wary of strangers with more dogs than teeth; please remember to keep your windows cracked if you leave pets in your vehicle for any amount of time; think good thoughts; ‘Keep the Faith’; try to not let life get in the way of living; may your god go with you, and may your dog go with you too… Oh, and of course, one final request, “Let us prey”… Sometimes poking, often stroking, and almost always humbly yours, Turkey Vulture…
p.s. You can contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at <turkeyvulture9@gmail.com>
p.p.s. Keep on wagging that tail, Fred… Hi, Silver Swan – behaving yourself? Hopefully not!… Keep up the good work, Round-eyed Robin.

A Bird’s Eye View #511 – 6th September, 2017

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

Greetings one and all. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin…
My fellow eating and drinking buddy, Steve Sparks, informs me that he is planning to start up a new version of the very popular and useful A.V. Grange Newsletter – the Valley information sheet that stopped publication a few years ago. Steve hopes to produce the ‘A.V. Community Bulletin’ every month of the year (rather than the Newsletter’s quarterly appearance) and to include even more useful details about the Valley’s social events, organizations, meetings, services, eateries, and general information… It will be a free, four-page handout of which 600 copies will distributed throughout the Valley each month at many locations. Steve hopes to have the first issue ready for October or November… Anyone interested in making sure information appears for their organization/meeting/event/etc, or wishing to be one of just nine local businesses who will get a business card-sized advertising spot in this new publication, can call Steve at the Bulletin’s number, 353-0369, or email him at avcbulletin@gmail.com – please do so on or before September 20 to be in time for the October issue…
Let’s move on with another in our series, ’This Trump Thing,’ or as it used to be called, for nearly 250 years up until now, The U.S. Presidency… As a candidate Donald Trump promoted a tax-reform agenda containing a mix of corporate and individual rate-cuts and deduction rises. Now President* he plans to put this into effect. The Tax Policy Centre, a think-tank, estimated those would reduce federal revenue by $6.2trillion while increasing the federal debt by $7trillion within a decade. Most agree that America’s byzantine tax system needs overhauling, but the devil is in the details: one reason that no major tax reform has been accomplished since 1986 is that the trade-offs are both mathematically and politically difficult. But Mr Trump, still smarting from Congress’s failure to repeal Obamacare and lacking any significant legislative achievements so far, needs a ‘win.’ That makes the The Twit’s recent Twitter attacks on Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, Republican congressional leaders whose support he needs, all the more baffling. Perhaps he reckons his support base would prefer the spectacle of him fighting the establishment more than any actual achievements. Sadly, I believe he would be correct in many cases…

Here’s a couple of updates on ‘Evening Dining in the Valley’… The Q and Aquarelle, formerly Aquarelle Cafe and Wine Bar, is now closed on ‘Taco’ Tuesday. They continue their ‘Santa Maria BBQ’ menu, featuring ribs and chicken, added to many of their previous favorites, and are open from 4-8pm, Friday thru’ Monday… And down in the Deep End, the Happy Hour at The Bewildered Pig has ended but the Sunday brunch continues for now (11am-2.30pm) and dinner is still from 5.30-9pm Thursday-Sunday… And that’s it for now – remember ‘eating out is fun’…
Public Service Announcements (P.S.A.’s)… Calendars and pens at the ready… #545 – The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have no more visits to the Valley this month. They will be here twice in September, on Thursdays, September 14 and 28, from 2-4pm at the Anderson Valley Farm Supply on Highway 128, north of Philo… #546 – Due to the County Fair in mid-September, the Unity Club’s Community Lending Library, held twice-weekly at The Fairgrounds, will be closed until the first week of October… #547 – The County Dump is open from 9am-4pm Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday. Dump Executive Director, Mike Mannix, rewards good customers with a star but will be very harsh with anyone thinking they can leave dead animals!… #548 – The Anderson Valley Grange is having its regular second Sunday Pancake Breakfast on September 10 from 8.30-11am. Prices range from $5-10 – kids through hungry folks, for a delicious, locally-sourced breakfast. Choices include pancakes (gluten free available but gluten extra is not), eggs, and bacon, with a choice of juice, tea or coffee included… #549 – The monthly meeting of the A.V. Village, formerly the ’Preparation for the Rest of Our Lives’ group, takes pace at Lauren’s Restaurant at 4pm on Sunday, September 10. This is a gathering at which the many issues facing us all in our later years are discussed, and the group is in the process of setting up a number of ideas/services to help with this process…
As a bonus P.S.A. here is the menu for the Community lunches and dinners over the next week in the Senior Center at the Veterans’ Building in Boonville… Tomorrow, Thursday, September 7, the lunch, served at Noon, will be Breakfast for Lunch, followed by Birthday Cupcakes… Then, next Tuesday, June 14, the evening meal served at 6pm, will feature Buttermilk Chicken and Tiramisu for dessert. As this is the 2nd Tuesday of the month, the dinner will be followed by Bingo at 7pm… All meals include vegetables, salad bar, and fruit, plus milk, coffee, tea, and lemonade. What a deal – it maybe the best value for money you’ll get all week! And remember – ALL ages are welcome! Hope to see you there…

I’m outta here – I’ve got see a man about a sheep… So, until we talk again: be careful out there; if you break a leg don’t come running to me; stay out of the ditches; please remember to keep your windows cracked if you leave them in your vehicle for any amount of time; think good thoughts; ‘Keep the Faith’; try to not let life get in the way of living; may your god go with you, and may your dog go with you too… Oh, and of course, one final request, “Let us prey”… Sometimes poking, often stroking, and humbly yours, Turkey Vulture…
p.s. You can contact me with words of support/abuse either through the Letters Page or by e-mail at <turkeyvulture9@gmail.com>
p.p.s. Missing the Venerable Pheasant… Keep on humming, Hummingbird… On the sheep, Grace…