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Courtesy of 'Images of America: Santa Cruz, California'--Sheila O'Hare and Irene Berry

THE CASA DEL REY, 1946. Designed by George Applegarth, this hotel cost $500,000 to build in 1910. It probably caused the Santa Cruz Beach Company to go broke and was sold to the Santa Cruz Seaside Company. It was used as a convalescent hospital for the troops during World War II. The Seaside Company ran it mostly as a senior retirement home until the 1989 earthquake. It was bulldozed very quickly and just before the deadline to collect funding from FEMA.

Bruce Bratton

LOST HOUSE FOUND! For the last two weeks I ran before and after photos of a house being remodeled on movable foundations right in front of Jamba Juice at Pacific and Front Street. No one knew where that house was moved to. One day after last week's issue came out, the present owners emailed me a photo of the house in its present location. I've promised them not to reveal the location, but I drove there and that's it. I'll give you some hints, though. If you stop in the Benten Traditional Japanese Restaurant at 1541 Pacific Ave. and ask Yukie or Mieko Hawkes about the house, they'll tell you the entire story--they own it!! The Benten restaurant has been there on Pacific for 18 years, through the earthquake and other disasters. The curious thing is that had the Benten been there in 1935, they could have watched their house actually being built before it was moved. Thanks to everyone who got in touch about locating this house. A copy of Images of America: Santa Cruz, California is going to the Hawkes at the Benten.

ILLEGAL PENAL PROBLEM? Aside from the two nights of sold-out shows at the Rio Theatre last week, and aside from Puppetry of the Penis really being a one-joke, dumb-guy-bar "I dare you to do that" show, I think there's another issue. Isn't it illegal, at least for women, in this town to be completely nude onstage? Aren't there penal codes against dancing, manipulating, touching and things like that while nude and up there in front of everybody, even at $39 a ticket? I'm not suggesting anything other than equal rights. And don't even think of Vagina Monologues in the same thought. Not only are there no vaginas in Vagina Monologues, it is an evening of some very sensitive, well written, memorable theater.

KINGDOM OF SHADOWS. I went to see Talk To Her a second time, it's that good. There are also some very interesting issues handled in that film, so it's worth a second viewing. The Hours is almost as good. As you know, it stars Nicole Kidman and her nose, Meryl Streep and Julianne Moore--an absolutely wonderful film about Virginia Woolf and her book Mrs. Dalloway. Rent Mrs. Dalloway, the 1998 film with Vanessa Redgrave, first--you'll enjoy The Hours even more. Max is a film about young Adolf Hitler and his failure as an artist. John Cusack plays a Jewish painter and art dealer; it too is an excellent film. Darkness Falls doesn't have much suspense, but it's a scary film if you like that sort of flick. Not a slasher or formula film, it's just plain scary.

KUSP AGAIN. KUSP station manager Peter Troxell was livid over my discussion of KUSP's problems here last week. A prominent board member was equally livid over the Sentinel article discussing the station's current scene (I thought it was fine, fair and as accurate as possible). I think the KUSP staff and board members forget that they do not receive direct communication from God and that it's possible that the listeners and the KUSP Foundation may just possibly have valid ideas, too. One bone of noncommunication that's being tossed around is the remodeling debt the station occurred. I was told by program director Howard Feldstein that it was "$150,000 plus," the Sentinel reported it as "$280,000" and an email from a station programmer today suggests the debt may be more like $450,000. That's lack of communication over what should be a simple and known fact. The internal factions continue to disagree about the new programming. Some members of the KUSP Foundation say the program changes were signed, sealed and planned long before any outreach occurred. They say volunteers have been driven away, many good ideas such as community marketing have been squelched, and on and on it goes. The question right now is: will a majority of the KUSP Foundation get together and demand board and programming changes as it has in the past, or will it go on as a rubber-stamp board and management inside group?

KUSP'S FUTURE? Well, there'll have to be a replacement for station manager soon, because he's given his notice. Who or what kind of thinking will replace him? KUSP has an unusual set of bylaws for a nonprofit; they say the KUSP Foundation members determine station policies and elect the board of directors to carry out their policies. So, will the new station manager also be a rubber-stamp person, will the station open up to the community, will the community in turn open up and become more involved and more supportive of KUSP in terms of money? The Spring fund drive coming up soon will show just how much the new Troxell/Feldstein more talk--more NPR sound format is appreciated. Stay tuned.

JEWISH THEMES IN AMERICAN CINEMA. Professor Guido Fink, author of Non Solo Woody Allen: la tradizione embraca nel cinema americano (Not Only Woody Allen: The Jewish Tradition in American Cinema), will be speaking here on Thursday, Feb. 6, at 4pm in UCSC's Cowell College's Conference room. He'll be talking about the old days and the Jewish ownership of the Hollywood studios and even about things like a samovar or a photograph placed in films. Fink has also published widely on directors such as Ernst Lubitsch and William Wyler; he's being sponsored by the Institute for Humanities Research, Jewish Studies, Italian Studies and the UCSC Department of Film and Digital Media.

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From the January 29-February 5, 2003 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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