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The Glorious Hotalings Building: This great structure stood at the intersection of Pacific, Mission and Water streets. First, it was the Hotalings Building; then it was Hinkle's Cash Store and the Arlington Hotel. Finally, it became the McHugh Bianchi Grocery. In spite of our protests, it was torn down around 1973-74 and is now World Savings.

Bruce Bratton

GREEN MEANS STOP. It's odd news that the Santa Cruz Green Party didn't endorse its own Tim Fitzmaurice, a loyal Green Party member, for Santa Cruz City Council. It only endorsed Thomas Leavitt. The Greens were annoyed at the council's delaying tactics on the Tidelands issue and other such nonaction issues. The party also endorsed No on P (and save the utility tax) and No on Q to increase the tax to support the Convention and Visitors Council on city tax dollars. Everybody else I talk to is still troubled by the very real possibility that Mike Rotkin and Cynthia Mathews will get back in and form the old power group, with Scott Kennedy again calling the shots.

WHAT'S FOR SURE. Cece Pinheiro would be great on the Santa Cruz City School Board. She's got the endorsements of Fred Keeley, Glen Schaller, Carole McPherson, Jeff Dunn and most or all of the present school board. Keeley and the Democratic Women's Club have also endorsed Dr. Bruce Jaffe, attorney Cherie Bobbe and Katherine Sweet, who are candidates for the Soquel Creek Water Board. That board needs new thinking and better water planning--Jaffe, Bobbe and Sweet would do a great job.

KINGDOM OF SHADOWS. I was sitting in Shelley Stamp's Silent Cinema class at UCSC, and she said Maxim Gorky called movies the "Kingdom of Shadows." That's better than Dark Pleasures, so I'm using it. Reese Witherspoon's Sweet Home Alabama is a very nice, nice, Hollywood film; see it if you like nice, nice Hollywood films. And she's sweet and nice, too. The Business of Fancydancing isn't nice. It's depressing, cloying and pointless--and you don't need to see it. 8 Women, on the other hand, is great fun. With France's greatest female stars singing and dancing their way through a murder mystery, how can you miss? One of those famous beauties said of the gay male director, "Gay men are God's gift to straight women." So there you have it. Mick Jagger does an excellent acting job in The Man From Elysian Fields. The entire film is wonderful; so are James Coburn and Andy Garcia. Go see it.

ADVANCE WARNINGS. Now that Santa Cruz has an official partner community in Cuba, there's a delegation of 20 or more locals going there in January to finalize the agreement. There will be a big party and fundraiser to help finance that excursion. Brett Taylor, KUSP Latin-music programmer, will host this dance party at Kuumbwa on Sunday, Oct. 13, 3-6pm. Call 464.2021 for information. The next area boxing matches will be Nov. 30 at the Hyatt Regency in Monterey. Jerry Hoffman's 12 Sports Productions promotes and produces them, and they always sell out early. Get seats now by calling 688.1604.

THREE WEEKS IN ENGLAND. I'm leaving for three weeks in England, Oct. 7-31. I'll be seeing the Royal Shakespeare Company do Pericles in Stratford-upon-Avon and King Lear at the Young Vic in London. Hopefully, we'll be also be seeing Benjamin Britten's opera Albert Herring at Glyndebourne. Aside from those three events, we'll be driving around England for two weeks first, then spending one week in London. Email me at the usual address with urgent things, and I'll pick them up at Internet cafes. Speaking of Internet cafes, somebody must have come up with the name Fiche and Chips by now, certainly. We've also been taking Don Young and Jeff Towle's eight-week course on Hamlet at the Aptos Library just to get in shape. If those guys ever give this course again, or any other Shakespeare course, just go.

THE WILLIAM MORRIS GLASS SHOW. If you haven't been to the Museum of Art and History to see the current "William Morris: Myth, Object and the Animal" installation of his glass pieces, do it ASAP. This exhibit will change your idea of what glass is. Morris has created and used glass like no one else. It's one of the best two or three exhibits I've ever seen at MAH. It closes Oct. 6, so hurry.

MORE POLITICS. I'm probably going to vote for Mike Rotkin for Santa Cruz City Council, even though I can't forget that it was Mike and Scott Kennedy who were caught tearing down Tim Fitzmaurice's campaign sign on Louis Rittenhouse's property during the last election. At least Rotkin apologized, but it's the threat of that kind of politicking that has the electorate worried. More later.

SANTA CRUZ SYMPHONY. Last weekend's opening concert of Grofe, Tchaikovsky and William Walton's Coronation March was just fine. Well, the Tchaikovsky was a mite untogether at first, but it worked out OK. The symphony is playing very well nowadays. Get tickets for the Nov. 2 concert of deFalla, Copland and Brahms as soon as possible; call 462.0553.

ART ABOUT TOWN. Have you been noticing all the graphic art decorating the traffic signal boxes at more than 20 intersections around town? Watch for them. All the art is from local artists. Some of the pieces are nice and subtle; others are startling. The Santa Cruz City Arts Commission, the Public Art Committee and Chuck Hilger from MAH all worked together on them.

A ROSE BY ANY OTHER. Patricia Smith gets around more than most people and has collected some names that are curiously attached to their careers. I think most of them are local. Lindsay Bass: marine biologist. Paul Chiu: dentist. Nancy Nipples: dairy owner. Dr. Carver: surgeon. Orson Swindle: Federal Trade Commissioner. Max Eggiman: bread baker at Max's Swiss bakery. Carol Field: soccer coach. Lacie Shoe: beauty queen. Mariless Caress: spa owner. Any others out there?


Bruce critiques films every other Thursday on KUSP-FM (88.9). Reach Bruce at bratton@cruzio.com.

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From the October 2-9, 2002 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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