#FrenchFriesforLauren, #CancerSucks

16865199_10154552207618772_9062367726385575740_nA classmate of mine at Medill – Northwestern University graduate school, class of ’82, has come up with a remarkable way to remember her younger sister, Lauren, who died of cancer in 2010 in Corona del Mar at age 49, and we were glad to participate this year:

“Leave it to my little sister Lauren to come up with a last request that has become an international event,” Karen wrote on Facebook. “Many of you know the story. When Lauren knew she was about to leave us after a 13-year battle with cancer, she wanted to make us smile. So she suggested we eat french fries on her birthday. It was our ‘go-to’ comfort food, and she figured it would make a sad day a bit sweeter. Since that day in 2010 — thanks to her friends and family, and the power of social media — people have been eating ‘French Fries for Lauren’ on February 20 in every one of the 50 states and in countries all around the world.

“All we ask is that you eat french fries on the 20th wherever you are and post the photo or video here, along with your city/state/country. My mom, sister Susan and I spend the day watching all of your wonderful photos come in from across the U.S. and around the globe. We view and respond to every single one, and it truly turns a sad day into a celebration for us.”

This year’s posts — 380 and counting —come from all over the world: cities in Asia (including Beijing and Tokyo); Europe and the UK (Brussels and London); the Caribbean (Jamaica, Turks and Caicos, and St. Lucia); and the United States (New York City, Disney World, Maui, and Nevada City, CA).  There were photos and videos (including a culinary tour featuring the best french fries in New York). In-N-Out fries were also pictured.

16807575_10210189095515664_4677129314684671544_nWe opted for homemade fries, writing: “To Karen: In remembrance of her beloved sister Lauren. Homemade fish and chips (AKA french fries) from Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and the Pellines at home in Nevada City CA. #FrenchFriesforLauren2017”

Karen wrote: “Jeff, thank you for eating #FrenchFriesForLauren2017 in CA. Extra points for making them from scratch! They look yummy.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Get married at Taco Bell for $600

The average cost of a full-blown wedding is $31,213, according to TheKnot.com. (There’s a per-head cost for food and liquor, and these two are typically the biggest expenses in the whole wedding, according to the website.) But get this:

“Beginning in summer 2017, Taco Bell’s flagship restaurant in Las Vegas is saying, ‘I do’ to weddings,” according to Taco Bell. “That’s right, you and your significant other will be able to get hitched inside the restaurant – the restaurant even has a wedding chapel on the second floor just for the occasion.

“All you have to do is get your marriage license, visit the restaurant in person this summer, walk up to the counter and order a wedding right off the menu. The $600 wedding package will include:

• A ceremony in the chapel inside the restaurant with an ordained officiant within as little as four hours
• Private area for a reception inside the restaurant with up to 15 of your closest family and friends
• Custom merchandise, including a sauce packet garter and bow tie, “Just Married” t-shirts for the bride and groom, Taco Bell branded champagne flutes and, of course, a Taco 12 Pack filled with tacos and a Cinnabon Delights cake for dessert
• A Sauce Packet bouquet is also available for the bride to use during the ceremony

What will a wedding inside a Taco Bell look like? Here you go:

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Son-in-law of local restaurateur helps lead the Space X program

From the blog of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine:

A Falcon 9 rocket from Elon Musk’s Space X lifted off from the Kennedy Space Center on Sunday, with 5,500 pounds of supplies, experiments and cargo headed to the International Space Station.

The Dragon cargo capsule is expected to arrive at the Station on Wednesday. “I feel very confident of 2018,” Musk said on Twitter. Future plans call for sending a Dragon capsule to land on Mars in 2020.

The Sierra Foothills has a local link to the trail-blazing Space X program. Space X’s Director of Space Operations, Garrett Reisman, is the son-in-law of Delia Gutierrez, the chef-owner of the popular Casa Las Katarinas restaurant in Grass Valley.

Garrett is responsible for “all Dragon spacecraft (crew and cargo) missions including Mission Control center operations, tools, staffing and training and for development of the Crew Dragon human interfaces including displays, controls, procedures, human factors, training, and crew health and medical issues,” as his LinkedIn profile notes.

Garrett joined Space X, based in Hawthorne, in 2011 as a senior engineer and has been promoted since.

Dr. Reisman (a Caltech graduate) joined Space X from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration where he has served since 1998. He has flown on two Space Shuttle missions, logging over 3 months in space including over 21 hours of extravehicular activity (EVA) in 3 spacewalks. Musk founded Space X in 2002. He also is the co-founder and CEO of Tesla Inc., the electric-powered automaker, energy storage company, and solar panel manufacturer based in Palo Alto.

Casa Las Katarinas features space memorabilia, including a colorful ladybug figurine that traveled to outer space. Garrett brought the ladybug aboard the International Space Station in 2008. A certificate reads: “This object traveled a distance of 40,153,970 statute miles before returning aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery.” It is on display in the restaurant with a photo of Garrett. Delia and her husband Dave Francis reopened their restaurant in Alta Sierra on Hwy. 49 last year after a successful 10-year-run in Nevada City.

Space X photo: Musk (center) and Reisman (right) inside Dragon spacecraft

Here’s a video of Sunday’s launch of Falcon 9 and Dragon Vertical at Pad 39A:

Here’s a video of Garrett:

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Ms. Rebane educates the rest of us on “Trump Derangement Syndrome”

Editor’s note: This letter was written and published in The Union, honest:

“Nevada County is experiencing an unreported mental health crisis. A fair number of our neighbors are suffering. They are exhibiting nonspecific fear, rage, growing disorientation and confusion. Their trauma began on election night last November producing symptoms similar to PTSD. The malady is called Trump Derangement Syndrome.

“These dear people need help. Luckily our county is well prepared with abundant avenues for healing and support. As a public service, The Union should detail sources where those suffering can find succor. The phone book lists more than 20 therapists and psychiatrists, eight purveyors of meditation and yoga instruction, and more than 35 churches offering healing prayer. We have personal coaches, chocolatiers, wineries, exercise studios, day spas, and multiple shops which sell soothing candles and comforting night lights.

“From the street demonstrations and the rants in The Union, I, as a compassionate conservative, find this crisis to be so severe that the county’s Behavioral Health Department should declare a state of psychiatric emergency and immediately establish Election Results Acceptance Centers.

“Jo Ann Rebane

“Nevada City”

Posted in Uncategorized | 28 Comments

Reinette Senum launches a blog amid resurgence of local progressives

(Photo credit: See Jane Do)

Reinette Senum (AKA self-described “Human Foghorn”) (Photo credit: See Jane Do)

“I finally did it! I have official launched my blog, TheFoghornExpress.com,” former Nevada City Mayor and community activist Reinette Senum wrote on her Facebook page this weekend.

It comes amid a resurgence in the local progressive movement on the heels of the Donald Trump presidency. Read “The awakening of a new local political force in our towns — progressive women.”

“Check it out! It was exactly 100 years ago, today, that my Great Grandfather dropped dead… sending the nation into shock. History buffs and residents of San Francisco will love this story!”

Reinette is referring to Major General Frederick Funston, known for his role in the Spanish-American War, among other things. He also was in command of the Presidio of San Francisco when the 1906 San Francisco earthquake hit.

On her blog, Reinette writes: “My name is Reinette Senum and I am a Human Foghorn.”

“This blog isn’t just about talk. It’s about action as well.”

She adds: “The opinions expressed by The Foghorn Express are Reinette Senum’s, alone, and do not reflect the opinions of the City of Nevada City, its council members or staff, any associations, organizations, boards, commenters, their pets… any bodies of any sort, whatsoever.

 “The Foghorn Express is a forum that is open to debate and hypothesis, but believes it is up to each and every citizen to draw his/her own conclusions. This blog is simply a launching point for resource sharing, contemplation, and intelligent dialogue with the objective to move its readers/commenters towards deeper awareness and active solutions.

 “Any hostile statements, name calling, unnecessary gang-stalking, hair-pulling or shin-kicking will not be tolerated.

NO Throwing Sand!

 “Please note, I have the right to change my opinion according to information received; I am a woman. There are many different paths to the same mountain top, so please be mindful of our respectful paths! Understanding and compassion is a process.”

Welcome Reinette!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

SYRCL, tribal leaders denied entry to upcoming regional water meeting

 This press release is from SYRCL:

Local conservation, community and tribal organizations are calling on U.S. Representatives Doug LaMalfa and Tom McClintock to hold a public town hall meeting on water issues after being prevented from attending an upcoming meeting about regional water issues with federal and state representatives.

The Mountain Counties Water Resources Association (MCWRA) promoted a February 24th all-day symposium, “The New Trump Administration – A View from the Top,” as an opportunity for members and non-members to hear from state and federal representatives, including Congressmen Doug LaMalfa and Tom McClintock, about “their views on the new Trump Administration on regional water interests.”

On Tuesday afternoon, more than a dozen local leaders, who had purchased $40 tickets online, had their money refunded and were told in an email from MCWRA Executive Director John Kingsbury that due to member interest in the February 24th event, “space capacity prevents us from being able to accommodate your registration. The registration fee will be refunded.” According to the MCWRA website, the organization has 67 member organizations. The hosting facility at The Ridge Golf Course in Auburn holds 300 people.

“I am deeply concerned about how the Trump administration’s water and environmental policies may impact the Yuba watershed and beyond,” said Caleb Dardick, Executive Director of the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL), which represents more than 3500 members. “I was looking forward to hearing directly from our representatives about how they plan to address serious flood control, climate change, and water management issues in the region.”

“These ancestral waters are sacred to my Tribe, which is why I wanted to hear from the government officials who will be considering how to repair our aging dams like Oroville or even build new dams like Centennial that would flood Nisenan cultural sites on the Bear River,” said Shelly Covert, spokesperson for the Nevada City Rancheria Tribal Council, whose ticket was also refunded. 

“Doug LaMalfa should schedule some Town Halls in his district so that his constituents can meet with him. With so much uncertainly coming out of Washington, we need to hear what our representative is doing to address climate change and water security for our families, farmers and businesses, especially in light of the recent failure of important water infrastructure at Oroville Dam,” said Elizabeth “Izzy” Martin, former Nevada County Supervisor and non-profit foundation executive, who was unable to secure a ticket to the event before it sold out. “The Mountain County group offered a much-needed opportunity, and they should have been prepared for this level of interest.”

Dardick, Covert and Martin join a growing call for Congressmen LaMalfa and McClintock to engage with the community on these critical regional water issues and other community concerns.

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

YubaNet: A primer on Nevada City’s sphere of influence

“At their February 23rd meeting the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo) will hold a workshop to consider and provide direction to staff regarding Nevada City’s sphere of influence (SOI) update, including the recommended sphere of influence boundary,” as YubaNet is reporting. “The current draft proposal reduces the city’s SOI from 2,907 acres to 1,482 acres and places the remaining acreage in an area of interest designation. No formal action will be taken at the workshop, the Commission will provide direction to staff only.”

The primer is here.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment