Wednesday January 30, 2013

This week has been quiet and not much has happened if we ignore the constant din of mainstream media talking about fake girlfriends and the latest Lohen blurbs. We have to believe nothing is happening in the world. The Sheriff’s Office is holding a meeting as I write with various agencies involved in the Bear Cub fiasco. The news we reported last week evidently wasn’t the real story. The bear cub was captured but did not survive and there are various tales as to what happened and who was responsible and when intervention in wild animal welfare should be taken. We will update when we get the rest of the story. It was sad, this little orphaned cub was in town for several weeks, it was immediately apparent it had lost it’s mother, it was too young to be on it’s own and everyone was worried about it and yet despite repeated calls to Fish and Game and other agencies that might have helped nothing was done until it was too late, hopefully we’ll find out what happened and how to avoid the situation in the future.

The usual suspects are here this week, Carols Movies , Carols Books , Carries Corner   Cooter , Fringe Bitchination , Gabby , Java and Jerusha. Be sure to check in on the Speech Contest Winner and find out about who’s buying Nuclear Waste . Sad to report we lost a wonderful lady Mary Clemo .

The photo is by Tara Dines of Sierra City it was taken on Hwy 49 near Clark Station north of Sierra City.

Wednesday January 23, 2013

1/23/13 It is so cold, so very cold, well actually it has warmed up it was in the 40’s today. I’m sorry if I whine about the cold a lot but there has just been an ice field in most parts of Downieville for the past two weeks and it is getting old. Just remind me of this when I start to whine about how hot it is in July.

The good news is the little  Bear Cub everyone has been worried about in Downieville has been captured and hopefully will be able to get healthy with the help of a Fish and Game Biologist.

The Board of Supervisors met and as usual we have all our regulars Gabby , Carrie’s CornerCarol’s Books , Carol’s Movie , Java , Jerusha , Mystery Shoes some guest commentary Civil War , Legitimized Violence , School Safety and be sure to check out the picture on the Mountain Messenger page. We don’t know where the Fringe is and Cooter wouldn’t tell us anything.

This weeks photo is by Lee Adams at the Kentucky Mine Trestle to the Stampmill.

Board of Supervisors Tuesday January 22, 2013

1/22/13 The Sierra County Board of Supervisors met in Loyalton on Tuesday, January 22, Chair Scott Schlefstein called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m. and the fun immediately began.

Supervisor Paul Roen tries to fix a stubborn stuck door at the Loyalton Center while Supervisor Peter Huebner helps and Tim Beals directs...

Supervisor Paul Roen tries to fix a stubborn stuck door at the Loyalton Center while Supervisor Peter Huebner helps and Tim Beals directs…

Sierraville District Ranger Quentin Youngblood gave the USFS report to the Board saying the event held at the Little Truckee Summit OHV Park on January 11,12 and 13 was a big success. A Skidoo dealer offered snowmobile demonstrations and products and they expect another event like this later this year. There are no prescribed burns or logging operations now due to snow cover.

Health and Human Services had many items on the agenda, beginning with a report from Lori Marsh on why Sierra County got an “F” rating from the American Lung Association. It seems that all of Lori Marsh’s efforts to counter the effects of big tobacco on our children were not enough for ALA, because the County does not take action to prevent smoking in public places such as parks and recreational areas. It is not our program’s fault it is the Board of Supervisors not taking action by way of non smoking ordinances which is the problem.

An agreement between Sierra County and Northern California Emergency Medical Service (NorCal EMS) to  in the amount of $10,800 to pay its 1/6 share of the LEMSA Coordinator was approved.

A request by the for In Home Support Services (IHSS) to increase the wages of workers by $1 was denied by the Board in spite of the fact that the money was in the budget and it would not cost any more money to increase 31 workers from $8.56 an hour to $9.56 because other county workers are not getting any pay raises . Supervisor Huebner recused himself at the suggestion of County Counsel Jim Curtis as Huebner’s wife Louise works as an IHSS employee.

In other actions for Health and Human Services the Board approved a Medi-Cal Data Privacy and Security Agreement between DHCS and Sierra County. Authorized Child Welfare Services to purchase CWS/CMS computers for $15,000. Jim Beard was reappointed to the Sierra County Solid Waste Enforcement Appeals Panel as he was terminated as Public Representative.

Director Janice Maddox gave an overview of the structure of Sierra County Mental Helath Services and related Mandates. A discussion and Resolution regarding SC Mental Health Emergency (5150) Assessments was approved.

The Board decided that Sierra County becoming its own Mental Health Plan as opposed to functioning as an agent to the Placer-Sierra Mental Health Plan was a good idea and it is in process.

At 10 a.m. Loyalton Friday Night Live coordinator Barbara Weaver brought Jorge Garcia, Liz Lizarde and Cheyenne Little to make a presentation to the Board regarding the dismal rate of compliance with tobacco sales to minors in Sierra County, demonstrating that there is an 80% failure rate by establishments selling cigarettes to minors.

Jorge Garcia, Liz Lizarde  and Cheyenne Little wait to make their presentation to the Board

Jorge Garcia, Liz Lizarde and Cheyenne Little wait to make their presentation to the Board

Here they use panel demonstrating failure of compliance

Here they use panel demonstrating failure of compliance

Planning Director Tim Beals and Planner Brandon Pangman presented the staff report and analysis of the proposed initiative filed by the Plumas-Sierra County Citizens Alliance for Property Rights (CAPR) see the report here: CAPR Initiative Analysis . The Board once again discussed what to do, if anything, regarding the initiative . Chair Schlefstein said he was reading the report and “by the time I reached page 12 my eyes glazed over, and I had a depressed, sinking feeling seeing all the agencies involved and then I got to the Global Warning Act….”.  Schlefstein continued that he found a quote online that said it all.

Supervisor Scott Schlefstein quoted from a Roger’s Rules column ” i.e., the insidious proliferation of rules and regulations (and their concomitant rulers and regulators) that we’re told are being put in place for the commonwealth but in fact are really put in place to  squelch individual liberty and solidify state control over our lives.”

Supervisor Lee Adams said the real problem lies when, “what you want to do and what your neighbor wants to do don’t exactly mesh.”

Supervisor Jim Beard wondered if the work on the General Plan could eliminate the need for an Initiative.

Director Tim Beals suggested that “everyone is trying to come to the same end point”, where property owners are able to build SFR on their lot.

Robert Eshleman said he “felt Tim and Brandon were the best apologists for the county” and the report was fair but brings us back to the General Plan. He said if nothing else the initiative has so far brought the discussion to the forefront.

Supervisor Lee Adams said property rights are fine for everyone until “someone builds a nuclear reactor   next door.”

No decision was made nor was one suggested, and the discussion died until the next Board meeting maybe.

A mysterious visitor to the meeting was suspected of being a Federal Agent there to investigate Mountain Messenger editor Don Russell however eventually his real identify turned out to be Andy Gomez from Anthem Blue Cross there to address the Board regarding Medi-Cal issues.

Federal Agent investigating Mt Messenger Editor Don Russell turned out to be Andy Gomez from Anthem Blue Cross

Federal Agent investigating Mt Messenger Editor Don Russell turned out to be Andy Gomez from Anthem Blue Cross

Chair Scott Schlefstein recognized three members of the Sierra County Road Crew, Dennis Marsh, Rob Moore and Zack Filippini and three Solid Waste Gate Attendants Lisa Copren, James Wright and Jason Wardrobe for their hard work.

Dennis Marsh

Dennis Marsh receives Recognition from Supervisor Schlefstein

Supervisor Schlefstein presents recognition to Rob Moore and Zack Filippini.

Supervisor Schlefstein presents recognition to Rob Moore and Zack Filippini.

photo

Lisa Copren receives Recognition from Supervisor Schlefstein

Lisa Copren receives Recognition from Supervisor Schlefstein

Jason Wardrobe receives Recognition from Supervisor Schlefstein

Jason Wardrobe receives Recognition from Supervisor Schlefstein

 

 

 

Monday January 21, 2013

Today is the holiday honoring Martin Luther King. In addition President Barack Obama will be sworn in publicly for his second term, a sweet serendipity event. Recently the Fringe posted (on Facebook)  this speech,“Beyond Vietnam”,  made by MLK in 1967 at Riverside Church in New York City. As I read the speech written more than 40 years ago I was struck as how with a few location and country name changes it would apply to todays situation and the United States involvement in world struggles, I wondered how we could have learned so little in almost half a century. I urge you to read the speech and think about contacting your representatives, we have to get better, we are on a collision course with … with what… we don’t know, but it doesn’t look pretty, we can change this course… we have to… it’s just us humans on this small planet, there is no alternative. 

Another article by Robert Dodge Martin Luther King & Inauguration Day,  a thoughtful look at where we are 50 years after the “I have a Dream” speech and what we can do to make real progress in protecting our “finite fragile future of our planet.”

Wednesday January 16, 2013

1/16/13  Ok, here it is another Wednesday and it appears the very very cold snap is letting up a little, it is now 42 F outside and feels downright toasty. Some of the ice is melting although my sidewalk is still mostly below 4 inches of frozen snow.  The Burning Trees Fest was lots of fun and we’re looking forward to next year when the trees might actually burn. The plan left out the part about snow wet trees don’t burn well.

Our guest columnist Winslow Myers, along with our regular features,Cooter, Java, Gabby, Carrie’s CornerJerusha, Carol’s Books  and Movie and of course the Fringe with  Primary Togetherness can’t be missed. There are lots of things to go to and interesting articles so check them all out.. The Downieville Improvement Group is generating enthusiasm for the coming year see here: DIG . The Sierra County Chamber wants you and needs your membership SC Chamber. Local poet Jubilee Hill wrote about the gold miners plight in Virginia’s Poetry Cornerr.

This week’s photo was taken yesterday on Depot Hill by County Supervisor Lee Adams in case you wondered if it is really cold… there’s the prrroof… like in brrrr…

Sierra Booster Update 1/14/13

According to Sheriff John Evans, there were no injuries and the cats were located and fine. Most of the fire damage was confined to a rental apt in the side of the building. The Booster offices sustained smoke damage. Thanks to the Loyalton VFD for the response and minimum of damage.

Sierra Booster On Fire Sunday 1/13/13

8:34 p.m. Ira Hays reports from the valley: We just returned from downtown Loyalton where we took these photos of the Sierra Booster Office on fire. Several fire trucks were on location as Loyalton Volunteer Fire Department members attack the fire from inside and out. Temperatures dip below 3F degrees as members of the LVFD gaining entrance to the attic space to vet the fire and gain access to fire.  We can still see smoke was coming from under the eves on all sides of the roof area. One  CHP’s on traffic control says his office received the call at approx 6:30pm. Flames were shooting from the north side around the eves of the building when he rolled up on the scene.

Sierra Booster building in Loyalton

Loyalton Fire Dept fights fire at Sierra Booster Office

 

 

Board of Supervisors 1/9/13

Board of Supervisors Meeting of January 8, 2013.

This was the first meeting of 2013 and new Supervisors were sworn in and the passing of the gavel from Chairman of the Board in 2012 Peter Huebner to Supervisor  Scott Schlefstein.

District 1 Supervisor Lee Adams was re-elected unopposed to his second term, District 3 Supervisor Paul Roen was elected to replace outgoing Supervisor Bill Nunes who served four terms and District 4 Supervisor Jim Beard replacing one term Dave Goicoechea.

Supervisor District 1 Lee Adams, Supervisor District 4 Jim Beard and Supervisor District 3 Paul Roen

Words

The newly seated 2013 Sierra County Board of Supervisors.
County Clerk Heather Foster, County Counsel Jim Curtis, Supervisor D1 Lee Adams, Supervisor D2 Peter Huebner, Chair Supervisor D5 Scott Schlefstein, Supervisor D3 Paul Roen, Supervisor D4 Jim Beard and County Treasurer/Auditor Van Maddox

Planning/PW Director Tim Beals with Miriam Dines who had just received praise from the Board of Supervisors for her 22 years of dedicated service to the County of Sierra.

After Chairman Schlefstein called the meeting to order, Supervisor Paul Roen was voted in as Vice Chair and so will be on the fast track for learning the job of Chair during his first year as a Supervisor.

Roen then requested two items be pulled off of the consent agenda both belonging to Dept of Health and Human Services Director Janice Maddox. The issues were approval of Sierra County’s updated Strategic Plan for Alcohol and Other Drug prevention and authorization to fill the vacant Health and Human Services Assistant Director position. Maddox explained the issues and assured Supervisor Roen the position would be an internal promotion type hire and both items were approved unanimously.

Next on the Agenda was the staff report and analysis of the proposed initiative filed by the Plumas/Sierra County Citizens Alliance for Property Rights (CAPR). This was a long involved discussion, led by Planning Director Tim Beals and Planner Brandon Pangman, who was attempting to revive his father’s (former County Counsel and now retired Superior Court Judge Bill Pangman) reputation for wordiness as Supervisor Adams noted, although the younger Pangman did an excellent job of being succinct and clear in his presentation.

Pangman demonstrated how the General Plan(GP) as it stands gives property owners the right to build a Single Family Residence (SFR) on their property and the Zoning Code is there to help build in flexibility and be able to look at each individual situation and to allow discretionary review. The most important issue is the discretionary or non-discretionary component. There are currently 29 base Zones in the GP with only 3 overlays. The current Zoning Code(ZC) is based on a 1973 ZC borrowed from Glenn County. After the 1996 General Plan update funding was an issue and any real work on a ZC was waylaid.

Pangman said the analysis shows that the Initiative does not succeed in its intent and it doesn’t deal with the details. Further Sierra County has always allowed SFR on property as a right but the problem is location, which is critical and the initiative isn’t going to deal with that and it completely ignores restrictions and doesn’t allow for discretionary review. According to Pangman, the County and CAPR have the same end goal but to accomplish it will take a lot more detailed amendments to the GP, we have to deal with this and there will still be conditional use permits.

When it was the Board’s turn Adams asked what result would be if Initiative was approved in its present form. The initiative would not change zone variance requirements, if property is R1 is “by right” buildable SFR, however there are setback requirements and special treatment and stream setback areas that need to be addressed.

County Counsel Jim Curtis spoke about the state mandate to the County requiring a General Plan, that ship has sailed and the GP elements and parts need to be integrated. Curtis also allowed that the initiative process is a cherished and allows the people to take matters into their own hands, but he does not want to create more legal battles and it is likely to have unintended consequences, even though the initiative writers may say, ” didn’t mean or what I meant was” a judge won’t be discretionary, they care about the written language.

Milt Holdstom talked to the Board about his TPZ land where there is a moratorium on building and said there has to be a solution for this type of quandary. Robert Eshelman also spoke and said that what Curtis said “is true and Brandon is fair”, he would encourage everyone to look at the Initiative as the county is unique and the reason we build by the river is because it’s the only flat spots.

The written analysis by County staff will be presented to the Board for the next meeting on January 22 in Loyalton and the focus will be on questions and issues the Board might have. Schlefstein requested the written analysis be in the Board packet and availble to Board members prior to the meeting.

County Planner Brandon Pangman presents synopsis of analysis of the CAPR Initative with a full written report to follow at the January 22 meeting in Loyalton

Milt Holdstrom of CAPR speaks to Board of Supervisors

Robert Eshelman arose to speak on the CAPR initiative and did not manage to remain within the three minute limit given to him

County Counsel Jim Curtis gives his take on what the CAPR initiative will do to the county General Plan and Zoning Codes

The Board of Supervisors adjourned and a meeting of the County Service Area Board of Directors was called to order to hear a Resolution approving expenditure from the Sierra Brooks Water System budget in an amount not to exceed $5,000.00 for a property appraisal of lands that will be needed by the County to proceed with the water system improvement project and authorization to the Director of Transportation to seek quotes from qualified appraisers and to return to the Board with a professional services agreement for the appraisal. Director Adams said he was good with the appraisal but not interested in an unfriendly condemnation as this concerns property owned by the Department of Fish &Game involving property swaps. A friendly condemnation as is currently being proposed with the City of Santa Clara would be fine.

The Board of Supervisors then reconvened  and agreed to send a letter to the state requesting an extension of time to meet landfill gas emission requirements  as that is what the whole property swap with is about to solve that problem.

The County directed Tim Beals to meet with CalTrans regarding the Perry Creek Bridge on State Route 49 in Sierraville.

County Auditor/Treasurer-Tax Collector Van Maddox was authorized by Resolution to open or close bank accounts for the county and all entities under the Board of Supervisors. Something Maddox has always done, but now it is formalized. Adams mentioned the Resolution must have been written by staff as there were no spelling errors.(laughter ensued)  Anyone receiving any written communication from the Van Maddox would understand the implication of that comment.

Louise Huebner and LeTina Vanetti were appointed to the Child Care Council Planning Commission. Supervisor Huebner abstained from the vote being married to Louise.

 

Wednesday January 9, 2013

1/9/2013 Well, once again, the best laid plans of ….. my plan was to get all of my columnists up and most everything written and ready to post on Monday so that after the Board meeting on Tuesday I would have nothing to do but write the Board of Supervisors piece and ready to put up. I did write an editorial this week so I don’t need to go into any personal revelations in this post. I will say Monday was spent doing something I didn’t plan, oh that’s right, I was visiting a friend, funny how that happens and then Tuesday, the Board meeting was short and I would have had all afternoon except another friend wanted a ride to Grass Valley and I took the opportunity to dodge work and go for a jaunt and then this morning I sat down determined to focus on the Prospect, however a local emergency needed some attention and me and another Salvation Army worker helped out someone down on his luck needing to get to Oregon but that takes awhile to figure out the logistics here in the boonies. So that’s my excuse for being so late.

This week we have Carol’s Book Review, Carrie’s Corner, Cooter, Java, Jerusha, the Fringe, my editorial, Gabby, and the Board of Supervisor’s. The Downieville Improvement Group is having a meeting tomorrow, Thursday at the Masonic Hall and invites anyone interested in the town and our events to come out. And we are having a Burning Tree Fest in the Downieville Park on Sunday at 11 a.m. bring your Christmas tree and have some hotdogs, marshmallows and hot cider.

The gorgeous photo of the Sierra Buttes from Bassett’s meadow is by Don Yegge.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year. This past year has been rough for many people. My personal roughness came in the form of a dear friend suffering a stroke in March, he is recovering nicely but my brother didn’t fare so well, he had a massive stroke and died at his home in April. In one sense he went quickly and didn’t suffer but it would have been better if he too, was recovering nicely. My sister-in-law is a strong lady and very able to continue but they were married for more than 40 years and deserved more. My brother was funny, a Navy veteran, retired telephone company worker, a right wing gun nut, we rarely talked during the Vietnam War years, he equated me with Jane Fonda,  (I took it as a compliment) and I loved him.

I look forward to 2013 and beyond as a time for us to become aware and pro-active in making this planet a good place to live no matter what country we live, there really are no boundaries. I am happy to pay taxes, I do not understand when people complain bitterly about paying taxes. I, alone, cannot build roads, bridges, hospitals, provide for those elderly, disadvantaged and helpless, but together when we all chip in what we can we can do almost anything. Years ago, a President thought we should spend less money on military and more on education, health and the well being of our country. We should take care of business at home before trying to tell everyone else how they should live their lives. I agree. I do think about the horrible issues in other countries that we would not allow here. We should be involved and work on human rights issues but I don’t believe invading, bombing and military intervention is the way.

There are no simple answers but we must keep trying. Be happy you make enough to pay taxes and understand the benefits to us all. We are the government, never forget, of, by and for the people, the government is not a separate entity. The government is us.

So on to business. Not to much local news, the usual Java, Jerusha who no longer wants to be Ask Jerusha but just plain Jerusha, CooterJava, Gabby, our guest columnists Peter G. CohenLawrence S. WittnerErin NiemelaMichael N. Nagler and then of course the Fringe talks about Sex, Lies & Guns this week. Well worth the read, I have to say I had trouble putting his piece up the charts and graphs became confusing so they are all there but may not be in exactly the right place, blame it on me. Carol gives a review on a Movie and  BooksCarrie’s Corner has some stuff, and that’s it folks, take care, have a happy new year and next week is the Board of Supervisors.

The picture of the pink sky in the Sierra Valley is by Janice Maddox.

So on

Jerusha 5/8/13

Jerusha

Questions will be answered here:
Volume V #253
May 8, 2013

Dear Jerusha,

What kind of name is Jerusha? When I looked it up it says, “possessed or married”. Since you are single, does this mean you are possessed? If you are actually married, you should stop saying you’re single. However, if you are indeed, possessed, you should probably not be giving out advice to others.

Sincerely,   Zadok, Downieville

Dear Self,

I am sure you understand my salutation and it will even be more clearer if you add Zadok to it.  I have no idea why you think my name is any of your business. However just to clarify a few things I will tell you I was named after Jerusha Hale, she was the wife of Abner Hale, a Missionary in Hawaii. While Abner was known for wreaking havoc with the native Hawaiians with his religious zeal, Jerusha, like me, was known as a Saint and a heroine and was very kind, gentle and sweet. James Michener wrote about her and Abner in his historical novel, Hawaii. If you read it, you will understand she was a wonderful person and so I am named after that Jerusha. I think you should rethink your judgmental attitude. I believe Zadok is a masculine name, well you can just forget about me being interested in you, if you are single and had that in mind.

Sincerely, Jerusha

 

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Volume V #252
May 1, 2013
#1
Dear Jerusha,
Mother’s Day is quickly approaching. What do I get my mom for Mother’s Day?
She has bad allergies, so nothing scented – everything has to be hypoallergenic – soap, lotion, candles. She doesn’t drink wine, so that’s out. Her kitchen is overflowing with stuff already, so there’s no room for new kitchen gadgets. There’s no spas in her area for a gift certificate. She already owns a ton of jewelry and she doesn’t wear the jewelry I’ve given her before. Except for one ring. She does, on occasion, wear the Swarovski ring I gave her. I guess that was a good one. She’s a petite lady, so clothing is hard to buy, same goes for shoes. She has these tiny size 5 feet. She can be very picky too. She’s not really into books. She does like to watch movies though. But, it’s so hard because she owns some dvds already and I don’t know which movies she already owns. Store gift cards can be difficult too. There aren’t the big chain stores where she lives. She doesn’t care for online gift cards because she doesn’t feel comfortable with online shopping. Which I think is weird. I love to shop online. I mean, really, who doesn’t? It’s just so convenient. For that matter, she’s just not a high-tech gadget sort of person, so I guess that’s out too. She likes to garden, but already has tons of gardening things and I don’t know how to buy that stuff any way. Your ideas would be most welcome.
Thank you,
Vicki, Los Gatos
Dear Vicki:
If you had used your last name your mother might have figured out that she was the mother mentioned here and realized there may be a little something off in her response to your generous gifts.  I did notice that you did not mention anything about spending time with your mother. Do you visit her, or go on cruises with her, she might like that. Your time is a gift that only you can give. You might think about giving her a Mom’s day. This is a day where your Mom gets to decide what to do and the son (of course in your case it would be daughter) does whatever Mom wants for a whole day whether it be upgrading computers, or going shopping or out to eat, whatever the Mother needs or wants. The other high ticket item is for the son (or in your case the daughter) would allow the mother to hold his hand for a number of minutes or at least no less than 45 seconds. Both of these items are known to be received with great pleasure from a Mom known to me. Meanwhile I see you get pleasure in bragging about the gifts you think are so wonderful.  I would suggest there be a little less me (you) in the gift giving and a little more…. well something, I can’t really think of a good end to that sentence. If in fact you can’t think of anything your dear Mother would enjoy I suggest you think about giving to someone else on Mother’s Day, like maybe a   sister or maybe a beloved aunt, there are more mothers than just your mother, maybe you should think about that. Anyhow, hope this has been helpful. You can mail things to me c/o Sierra County Prospect, POB 53, Downieville, CA 95936.
Sincerely, Jerusha
P.S. Maybe your Mom drinks beer…
May 1, 2013
#2

Dear Jerusha,

My cat keeps me up at night. What do I do??

Regards,   Sleep-deprived in Truckee

Dear Sleepy:

What kind of dumb question is that? There are lots of things you can do. Put the cat in it’s own bedroom. Buy a nicer bed for the cat. Move to a two bedroom place if you only have one bedroom. Give the cat whatever makes her/him happy. Maybe the cat needs more food. Have you bought cat toys? Does the cat have a companion? Maybe another cat or some mice. Maybe your sleep habits need changing. Wear ear plugs, of course if there is a fire and you can’t hear the smoke alarm that could be a problem. Or if you slept with a pillow over your head it might decrease your oxygen level which could affect the cats health if you were not there to feed him/her. Well I don’t know. Just stop whining.

Sincerely, Jerusha

PS: I know Sleep Deprived is not your real name.

 

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Volume V # 251
April 24, 2013
Dear Jerusha,
I just came back from a family reunion (of sorts). My family is loud and embarrassing. We talk over each other, we fight over who pays for what, and they keep telling me I’m the adopted one.
My thumb was fine before the weekend reunion, but then I ended up with a painful and swollen left thumb. Was this caused by my family?
Sincerely,
The Adopted One
Dear Adoptee:
I can see you are troubled and easily embarrassed. This has nothing to do with you being adopted, you most likely were reminded you were adopted because another family member (maybe a sister) is jealous. After all adopted people have been chosen and are very special maybe even more special than a biological child where the family has no say in whom the siblings are, so if you are thinking your problems are because of this think again. Obviously there is something else wrong with you. It could be possible someone is bending your thumb as you sleep. Did you share your room with anyone (maybe a mother). At any rate if you can’t keep up with family chitchat maybe this is about you more than the family, have you thought about that? Otherwise why wouldn’t you use your name. I have no idea if you are a man or woman or married or single and that is annoying to me, and I don’t get annoyed easily. Good luck with your thumb.
Sincerely, Jerusha
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Volume V # 250
April 10, 2013
Hi Jerusha:
Yesterday I was going to go to the movies. I didn’t because my friend was being a real jerk. Then he got mad at me because I didn’t go and called me a jerk. I am just wondering who the real jerk is. We were going to see Lincoln it is supposed to be a good movie and so I was wondering what to do.
Thanks, Joe Membray, Sierraville
Dear Joe:
First of all you don’t know me and so a proper salutation would have been in order instead of just “Hi”. You did not say how old you were and you do sound very young like maybe a teenager. The first thing you should do is develop some manners, ask your parents to help you with this. Meanwhile friends don’t call friends “jerks”, so it appears the friendship may be in question.
If in fact you are older than say 50 or 60 years then you really have no excuse. Unless you are married then talk to your wife. If you are not married, neither am I and I have not seen Lincoln either.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V # 249
April 3, 2013
Dear Jerusha:
I have two nieces and they always tell me I am their favorite aunt. I really like to hear that but then they have some other aunt’s too. I am their father’s sister but their mother has sisters  and I think they really like them. So do you think they tell their other aunts that they are their favorite aunts too or am I really the favorite aunt. And what about my grand niece and grand nephew should they be counted in this tally. I am not sure why I am asking you this, but I thought I would.
Sincerely, Beth Brown, Sierra City
Dear Beth:
Very interesting. Do you realize that your last name is the same as mine? I don’t know a lot of people with the same last name as me, with the exception of my mother, father, grandmother and grandfather and my brother. Oh and my sister-in-law and my nieces. So that is pretty amazing I would say as Brown is a fairly common name. Meanwhile I don’t know what to think about your issue. You must be fairly old if you have a grand niece and nephew. Well let me know what you find out.
Sincerely, Jerusha
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Volume V #248
3/27/13
Dear Jerusha:
Thre is an Easter Egg hunt and the Easter Bunny comes to Downieville on Saturday and I was wondering if you were going to be there. I was thinking about coming over but I live in Verdi and didn’t know if it was okay for me to go to a Easter Bunny party in another town even though we are in the same county. Sierra County. Many people don’t realize that Verdi is in Sierra County because part of the town is in Washoe County in Nevada, which is another State. Anyhow if you are going to be there it would make the trip worthwhile if it is okay for me to go to the Easter Bunny party. I have a niece and nephew who would like to meet the Bunny.
Sincerely, Joseph Wilson, Verdi
Dear Joe,
I think it would be okay for you to attend the Easter egg hunt on Saturday in Downieville. The Downieville VFD puts the party on, boils all the eggs for the Bunny to hide and there is even some special golden eggs to find for a special prize. I know people from Sierra City and Alleghany come to the party so I am sure Verdi folks are welcome. I think I will be there, I usually am, but you should bring your niece and nephew regardless of me, I am sure they will have fun. Is your wife going to come with you or maybe you are single. I am single so will most likely be there by myself if I am there. Anyway have a Happy Easter.
Sincerely,  Jerusha
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Volume V #247
3/13/13
Dear Jerusha:
Well, here it is almost Spring. Does that make you happy? I think many people are looking forward to Spring, Summer and warmer weather. I know I am. I think you wrote a long time ago that you liked Winter and snow. I believe you even said you would be happy if it snowed all year long, do you still feel that way? It seems like it would make life more difficult. If there was snow all year long then how would you grow vegetables, or would we even be able to have apple trees, nevermind grow strawberries. It appears you may not have thought it through wanting it to snow all year long. Just thought I would bring this to your attention.
Sincerely, Robert Elbert, Sierra City
Dear Robert:
Normally I would call you Bob, if I felt you were someone who really cared about whether I thought of you as a friend or otherwise. Otherwise of course could mean closer than friend or just flat out enemy. I don’t have any enemies, as I am liked by most everyone.  I suppose you must like my column or you wouldn’t mention what I wrote months ago, at any rate, it doesn’t matter, but to answer your question about vegetables and strawberries, I would use a greenhouse.
Sincerely, Jerusha
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Volume V #246
3/6/13
Dear Jerusha:
Many times you have mentioned that you are single and you ask some of your male readers if they are single and then tell them that you are so I wonder if that means you are looking to not be single and want to meet someone to possibly date or have a relationship with, is that true?
I have a friend who is single and I thought maybe you would be perfect for him, that is if you were interested in meeting someone, I don’t really know, but if you are and let me know then maybe we could arrange a meeting. Maybe we could double date, if you know someone that might like to meet me, what do you think?
Sincerely, Pat Williams,  Indian Valley
Dear Pat:
I don’t understand why you think I am running a dating service here. Do you realize how long your first sentence is? It takes up the whole paragraph. The other thing is your name is Pat, what is that suppose to mean? Is it Patrick or Patricia, am I suppose to find you a man or a woman. Which really doesn’t matter because as I said I am not running a dating service. If you in fact are a Patrick then that means you are single if you are looking for a date. So why wouldn’t you just ask me. I can’t believe you this is so ridiculous. I have no idea what’s true as your sentence just runs on.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V #245
2/27/13
Dear Jerusha:
Would you please help me. My husband wants me to cook dinner every night and he never offers to make dinner. I do not think this is right as many of my friends tell me their husbands often make meals for them. I have told Harold this and he says they are probably pansies. I think he means the husbands who cook dinner for their wives are not really manly. I told him I would think much more of him if he was nicer to me but he doesn’t seem to understand. I don’t know what to do. Do you?
Sincerely, Mary Beth Maroney, Alleghany
Dear Mary Beth:
I am not sure what to tell you. You realize I am not married so don’t have this problem. If I was married I most likely would cook dinner, but maybe not. It would be nice to have someone else cook dinner on occasion. I don’t cook too much, just now and then. I like to microwave a lot, I don’t know if that is cooking. Have you microwaved stuff for him? Maybe your cooking is just to good. Gosh what a dilemma, well anyhow, try the microwave thing and see what happens.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V #244
February 20, 2013
Dear Jerusha:
You used to be Ask Jerusha weren’t you? How come you changed it? I liked it when we could ask you questions. Now I feel as if we are not suppose to ask anything. It is not a good feeling. I wish you would go back to allowing people to Ask.
Thank you.
Jim Capus, Alleghany
Dear Jim:
You might notice that people do ask stuff. Obviously feeling as though you can’t ask, didn’t stop you from asking, did it. So I am not sure what your point is, you must have a lot of time on your hands. Maybe your wife can explain it for you. If you are not married you can write again.
Sincerely, Jerusha
P.S. Did you notice what it says above my picture?
Volume V # 243
February 13, 2013
Dear Jerusha:
Many times over the years my better half has asked me what I would like for a present for my birthday or Christmas or Chanukah or Mother’s Day. I have always told him I would like a Platinum ring with diamonds and emeralds and he always laughs. I don’t know why he laughs. Platinum, diamonds and emeralds are all very expensive but they are also an investment. Platinum is now over $1,700 an ounce, valued more than gold is an ounce. It is a good investment. It won’t devalue, well it might, but then it will gain again just like gold has. Did I mention I was allergic to gold, it makes my fingers turn black and I get a rash around my neck and my ears get all weird. I have allergies that I can’t control. I would love to have some jewelry that I can wear all the time without having an allergic outbreak. So I was just wondering what you think about this. I really hope you can help me.
Sincerely, Mirabelle Glazelle
Dear Mirabelle:
Your letter is very interesting. I did not know platinum was valued by the ounce like gold. One learns something new every day. There was one real issue that caused me consternation in your letter. Do you really expect to get both Christmas and Chanukah presents? That appears to be very greedy of you. I would think you would have the good sense to choose one or the other, expecting gifts for both holidays does not speak well for you. You should rethink why you do that. If indeed you can justify celebrating both days and receiving presents for both, please let me know as I would be interested. Thank you.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V # 242
February 6, 2013
Dear Jerusha,
This is the 4th letter I have sent to you. I don’t understand why you won’t answer my question. It seems to me you would realize that I have to have an answer or I wouldn’t keep writing to you. Why won’t you answer? You have answered many letters that are not as important as my question and I am getting tired of writing to you. I am thinking that you are just ignoring me and I want to know why. Meanwhile please answer my question as it is really important. Thank you for your help.
Sincerely, Jimmy Wolsen, Pike
Dear Jimmy,
Where have you been sending your letters? If you send them to P.O. Box 53, Downieville, CA 95936 I will get them. If you send them to jerusha@sierracountyprospect.org I will get it. I have no explanation as to why I received the above letter and none of your others. Are you sure you wrote them? You sound a little confused. I rarely and only occasionally get confused myself. So now that I have answered your question I hope you are satisfied.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V #241
January 30, 2013
Dear Jerusha:
Do you feed the birds or the squirrels? I see all kinds of information about how to make your bird feeder squirrel proof. Do you think that works? This is such a dilemma for me as I have both squirrels and bluejays and other winter snowbirds in my yard and they all want food and I feel bad if I don’t let the squirrels eat too.  I live in Downieville and I heard that Clint Eastwood might come for Gold Rush Days on Labor Day weekend and that the Yuba Theatre is going to have one of his pictures playing that weekend. Have you heard that? It would be so exciting if Clint Eastwood came to an original gold rush town like Downieville. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.
Sincerely, Patty Shedwod, Downieville
Dear Patty,
You realize, of course, that you asked two questions that have nothing to do with each other. If you are serious about the bird and squirrel problem, one would think you would stick to one problem at a time. Although Clint Eastwood coming to Downieville certainly isn’t a problem, it would be exciting, so I have to agree with you. I keep thinking he was in Cat Ballou, but he wasn’t, that was Lee Marvin. Anyhow you should put plenty of food out so both the squirrels and the birds can eat. Winter is tough on those critters and they need our help. I wonder where the Chipmunks are.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V #240
January 23, 2013
Dear Jerusha,
I notice that you only print one letter a week. Why is that? Do you get more than one or do you just pick out the best? Some of the letters you get are really dumb and I wonder why you even bother answering them. If the letter you answer is the best one then you must be getting some really weird letters. Anyhow, I was just wondering, I don’t have any real problems in my life to discuss but if I did I would certainly write to you as you are very compassionate.
Sincerely, Valerie Whitcomb, Verdi
Dear Valerie,
I am so happy that you think I am compassionate, not everyone would agree with you. Sometimes it is difficult to answer letters compassionately because the writer  writes really dumb stuff. I get lots of letters and find myself picking a letter at random. If a letter is really personal and needs serious thought I will answer it privately as I don’t want anyone to worry when they write to me that their personal business becomes public. So, I am looking forward to you having some difficulty in life so that I can help you.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V # 237
January 16, 2013
Dear Jerusha:
Did you go to the Burning Tree Fest in Downieville? I think I saw you there, but you looked a lot older, was that you? I was wearing a vest and ball cap and was by myself. When I went to have a hot dog, they were already out of them, but someone said that you had brought the Tofu dogs to share and so I had one of them. It was pretty good, it didn’t taste like a real hot dog but with mustard and a bun and cooked over the fire, I might not have known it was tofu if I didn’t know it was tofu. Anyhow I tried to talk to you, but you were always busy taking pictures and talking to other people. Well, you were if that was you, which is my question, was that you?
Sincerely, Peter Samuels, Sierra County
Dear Peter:
Well I was at the Burning Tree Fest and it was really fun. I expect we will have a burning tree fest next year too, and maybe every year as they use to do it in the old days. I don’t remember the old days, I just hear people talking about it. I didn’t notice any young men in vest or ball cap at the Fest. I imagine if you thought I was older you must be younger. I wonder exactly what your idea of “older” is…. it is a little disconcerting for someone who does not even know me to think the “older” woman at the Burning Tree Fest was me. I don’t think you deserve an answer. Maybe next year you might think about being less rude.
Sincerely, Jerusha
P.S. Were you alone because you are single?
Volume V #236
Dear Jerusha:
I noticed in your new picture there are some little boys. Are they your brothers? They can’t be your children as you repeatedly say that you are single and appear to flirt with any male that writes to you. So who are these boys, maybe your nephews. They are very good looking and actually appear to look a lot like you. So can you let me know the real scoop on this please?
Sincerely, Bill Jenkins, Sierra City
Dear Bill:
It is possible they are my sons as I may have been married once. Just because I am single now doesn’t mean I wasn’t married at some point in my life. Although you have recognized they are very handsome, I will say they are exceptionally smart and very wonderful sons and brought wonderful daughter-in-laws and wonderful grandsons into my life. Of course this makes me older than you probably thought, but you didn’t mention whether you were married or how old you were, anyhow it really isn’t any of your business and you shouldn’t be asking personal questions unless you are single too.
Sincerely, Jerusha
Volume V # 235 1/2/2013
Dear Jerusha,
This past year has been unfortunate for many of us. Some of us have lost loved ones and good friends, Others have had a close call with the Grim Reaper. In this New Year perhaps we should have a special appreciation of our loved ones and good friends. Let us hope the new year helps us enjoy our remaining loved ones and good friends. What do you think?
Ebenezer Scrooge (I have learned and reformed)
Downieville
Dear Eb:
I am sure your name is not Ebenezer Scrooge. I don’t have to tell you what I think. That is not a valid question. What do you mean “hope”? You either enjoy your remaining loved ones and good friends or you don’t. You don’t hope, you just do it.
Sincerely, Jerusha
P.S. My New Year Resolution was to be pleasant and nice at all times and not get irritated over petty issues…. well, thanks to you, I broke it already.

Carol Sees Movie 5/1/13

5/8/13
Emperor
They say this movie is about Gen. MacArthur meeting the Emperor of Japan after WWII.  (by the way, my aunt worked in his office during this time period but I just never asked her enough questions!)  Actually, it is about Gen. MacArthur assigning Gen. Bonner Fellers the task of finding out if the Emperor should be tried for war crimes by having issued the order to attack Pear Harbor.  So most of the movie, except the last 5 minutes, is about how Gen. Fellers went about finding the top advisors to the Emperor and trying to find out the truth.  Was the Emperor just a figure head and other politicals issued the order?    It is a very good lesson in history  about this 10 day period in time, Japanese culture, and more.  There are moments that grabbed me of the trauma the Japanese people were in after the war – the whole community left in rubble, no food, on and on.
Tommy Lee Jones plays Gen. MacArthur, and while he is in the film all of about 15-20 minutes, he steals the movie every time.  But all of the acting us just superb.  I was taken by the Japanese actors and the sensitivity in their roles.
The movie is 1 hr 36 min, and I think it was still a little long.  They could cut the numerous bar scenes of Gen. Fellers having a drink and smoking (what’s the point?  once is enough – we got the message) and watching birds fly.  They made up a story about Gen. Fellers in love with a Japanese girl (yes, he did meet a Japanese foreign exchange student while in college) and I was disappointed they needed to “beef” up the movie with a romance.  I thought the actual historical story was good enough.   That being said, I did enjoy the movie and learned some interesting history.  But, I also think it would be just fine as a TV documentary, about 1 hr long.
Netflix:
Emperor  2012PG-13As World War II ends, Gen. MacArthur oversees Japan’s surrender, an act that dispels the nation’s centuries-old beliefs about its emperor. With the eyes of the world — and history — upon them, MacArthur and his protégé will change Japan forever.

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5/1/13
42
Carol Says:
This is the story of Jackie Robinson just before he goes into the pro’s, and that first season of his career in the pro’s.   The  movie takes place in 1947 (I think it was 47, maybe 46) and as I am sure you know, he was the first African American to enter into the pro’s.  We follow his story of getting signed on, getting married, and the reaction of him joining an all white team and being the only black person on the team, or at that, even in the whole pro league.
I really enjoyed this movie.  While it was hard to see and hear the racism against him, I found him an amazing person who did handle the harrassment tossed his way.  I also learned some baseball history (thank goodness the scenes of them playing baseball were not long!) and the history of certain players.
After the movie I asked some movie goers if they like the movie.  One person interviewed said that the movie was OK, but that person already had read alot about Jackie Robinson and so knew everything already in the movie.  Not being a person to sit and read a book about these baseball players, it was just fine for me to sit and watch and learn.  Other people I talked with (who didn’t know alot of the history) loved the movie.   I thought the acting was good, and knowing the movie was based on a true story, made me like it more.  Always nice to learn something.  And that Pee Wee Reese certainly “went up in my book”.
Netflix says:
42 2013PG-13This biopic focuses on the relationship between baseball icon Jackie Robinson and Brooklyn Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey, who signed Robinson and in 1947 made him the first black Major League Baseball player of the modern era.

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4/10/13
Playing for Keeps

Netflix:

A washed-up, former soccer star attempts to rebuild his relationship with his son and ex-wife by coaching his son’s soccer team. His plan to reconnect with his family is met with challenges from the attractive soccer moms who pursue him at every turn.

Carol Says:
This movie started out really good, and then about half way through it went somewhere else.  A little sideways, I think.
Gerald Butler is an ex soccor pro who does not have a job and owes money.  He has a son and ex-wife.  While visiting his son and taking him to soccor practice, the coach does not pay attention to the team.  He is on the phone.  So Gerald takes over the practice and becomes the new coach.  He is also trying to get a job with ESPN as a sportscaster.  Things seem to be moving in this direction.  It is really a good movie up til now.
Then all of the mothers want to go to bed with him, and there is where it goes sideways.  He was building a relationship with his son, working towards a job, wanting his ex-wife back, and then suddenly the movie is about his relationships with these women.    Go figure.  This goes on for awhile.  Women, ex-wife, son.
They have Dennis Quaid in this movie, I think because we all like his smile.  He has a few funny lines but then they turn him into a person that we didn’t like so much.  I am not sure why they did that to him.  He could have been fun in this movie.
Then he decides the relationship with his son is more important than the women, but also accepts the job out of state.  As he is driving out of state, leaving his son behind, he decides his son is more important.  So he drives back to the house of his ex, reunites with his son,  his ex-wife has broken up with her fiance and takes him back.  End of story.
I don’t know – it started off so good!
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4/3/13
Oz The Great And Powerful

Netflix Says:

In this prequel to The Wizard of Oz, circus magician Oscar Diggs is magically transported to the Land of Oz, where he deals with three witches and uses his illusionist skills and resourcefulness to become the wizard the residents have been expecting.

Carol Says: 

No wonder Johnny Depp turned down this part – he knows a bad movie when he reads a script. This movie just falls flat.  I took my 3 granddaughters to see it (11 yrs & 13 yrs) and we all 4 voted it “not good at all”.  I know, you are all wondering:  “why dosen’t she tell me what she really thinks”.
OK, so Oz is in the circus and the gets taken off by this tornado, and lands in the Land of Oz.   Really – the tornado comes along and while Oz is in the balloon, the tornado carries him off.   I’m not sure where the land of Os is, but there he is.  The Good Witch is there when he lands, and thinks he is the wizard they are waiting for, but he really isn’t.  But since there is gold to be had involved, he tells him that he is.  The Wizard, that is.  Because he wants that gold.   But the  bad witch doesn’t want him there, and then the new bad witch, who was previously the good witch, really is mad at him and also wants to get rid of him.   So both witches want to get rid of him.
Then there really is another good witch who wants the people to believe that he is the Wizard.   And to prove he is the Wizard, he needs to do some wizardry, which he can’t do because he is not a wizard.  But don’t you know, at the end he does do some wizardry and  what he does it is pretty clever.
We saw it in 3D and those effects are just not that great.  Oz is not likeable.  And there is just so much “missing” from this movie…. in the story line, visual, and not sure what else.  My 13 year old grand-dau thought it should have been rated PG13 because for younger kids, there would be what would be considered scary scenes.  But we were all disappointed in so many ways with this movie.  We were very grateful when it ended.
3/27/13
Hyde Park on the Hudson
Netflix says:

When the king and queen of England visit U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt hoping for support on the eve of World War II, Roosevelt must deal with his official duties as well as the competing interests of his mother, his wife and his mistresses.

Cast:Bill MurrayLaura LinneyOlivia ColmanSamuel WestElizabeth Marvel,Elizabeth WilsonEleanor BronOlivia Williams

Carol says:

Slow.  Bill Murray did a good job.  Slow movie.  And that was also the consensus of others in the theatre when I asked them.

This movie made his mother unlikeable and overbearing (oh, a good book to read is “First Mothers”.  About the mothers of presidents.  Very interesting.)  The movie dealt mostly with his 5th or 6th cousin who was one of his mistresses (based on letters they found after she had died) and then more towards the end, all of his mistresses.  And there was some of the movie about the King and Queen’s visit, and they didn’t make the Queen very likeable (unlike in “The Kings Speech”).

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3/20/13
Hitchcock
Netflix says:
Iconic filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock struggles with his marriage, the censors and the financiers of his 1960 film Psycho in this biopic. Driven to prove he still has an edge, Hitchcock crafts what would become one of the greatest thrillers of all time.

Carol says:

There is someone out there who will like this movie, but unfortunately it was not for me.  This movie is during the period of time he was directing “Psycho”.  There were some interesting facts about the filming of “Psycho”, about his marriage, and things I already knew about him.  His house was beautiful and it was interesting to see how they filmed “Psycho” and his directing techniques.  However, according to this movie, he had a dark side to him and that was really brought out.  I wasn’t looking for a comedy or light hearted move, but not one so dark, either.

My sister Gail said:
 I have not seen it.  I like your critique!  I feel like it gives me a very clear idea about the movie, and I can make a knowledgeable decision about whether or not I want to see it.  And you did that without giving away too much of the story.  Nice work!
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3/13/13
Quartet
 
Netflix says:

A trio of retired opera singers’ annual celebration of Verdi’s birthday sours when their estranged fourth member shows up but refuses to sing. Tensions rise and diva drama erupts — will personal problems prevent the show from going on?

Cast:Maggie SmithTom CourtenayBilly ConnollyPauline CollinsMichael Gambon,Sheridan SmithAndrew SachsLuke NewberryTrevor PeacockGwyneth Jones,Jumayn Hunter

Carol says:

No one left the theatre when when the movie ended and the credits started rolling, as there was a nice little surprise when they do roll the credits.  You don’t want to miss that.  So when the movie actually starts, I suggest that you just take a breath, relax, and enjoy.  This is not an action paced movie, at all, but moves at a nice slow pace.  The scenery is beautiful, as is the music.  I think some of the dialogue I would change.

The story takes place in an opera singers, and musicians, home for the aged.  Things are going well until the Diva shows up.  I don’t know exactly what I thought the plot would be, but the previews had looked good.  Go on a rainy day when there is nothing else to do.

Dani said seeing the movie once was enough.  At some point I wondered if I were enjoying it or not, but decided to just relax and watch it unfold, and then I enjoyed it more.  So I say, if you go see it, see it with that in mind and you will enjoy this movie.  Look at the scenery, listen to the movie, and that is a treat in itself.  The people in the audience reacted to various parts of the movie (laughed, gasped, etc)  clapped at the end, and they all enjoyed it.   However, it is slow.  I would not rush out the door to see it, but lots of people there really loved it (I asked them).  By the way, there are a few movies by the same name so you want to rent the one filmed in 2012, director is Dustin Hoffman.

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3/6/13
Searching for Sugar Man
Netflix says:

The incredible true story of Rodriguez, the greatest ’70s rock icon who never was. Decades after Detroit singer-songwriter Rodriguez disappeared following the failure of his two critically praised records in the 1970s, two fans from South Africa, where Rodriguez was a huge hit, try to track down their idol.

Cast:
Sixto RodriguezSteve SegermanDennis CoffeyMike TheodoreDan Dimaggio,Jerome FerrettiSteve RowlandWillem MöllerCraig Bartholomew-StrydromIlse Assmann

Carol says:

If you watch ’60 Minutes’, you may have seen the segment about Rodriguez and the documentary that was made about him.  Rodriguez was a song writer/singer who was discovered in 1970.  He wrote songs about life situations.  However, he just never made it big in the States.  Unknown to everyone in the States, especially him, he was a HUGE hit in South Africa.  He was as big as the Beatles, and bigger than Elvis.

This story is about a man who reviews music and heard about Rodriguez.  The story he was told is that Rodriguez had died back in the 70’s – suicide.  But the thing is, no one really knew what had happened to Rodriguez.  He did his research, found out Rodriguez is alive, and to him that was the end of the story.  But the story gets really bigger at that point, in that a record store owner in South Africa learned Rodriguez was alive, and through a “tiny thread” (an e-mail that Rodriguez’ daughter sent) contacted Rodriguez and brought him to South Africa to perform in a concert.

Now don’t think I told you too much, because there is so much more to this sotry.  Things that made us chuckle and little suprises.  One other thing I enjoyed were the interviews with his daughters, which are so heartwarming.  It is so clear that they love their dad, and describe the kind of man/father he is to them.  And there is more heartwarming information, along with a bittersweet feeling of how this man could have been big, but wasn’t.   And that over 500,000 records were sold in South Africa and he never got a dime.  To me, his voice has a certain quality with a haunting touch to it.  And Rodriguez himself is an unassuming person who lives a simple life.

This is a good movie.  A little slow maybe the first 5 minutes or so, but gets rolling shortly.   The only disappointment is that sometimes the narration is covered with what is supposed to be background music, and you cannot hear what the narrator is saying.   Also, the accents from various people is a little hard to understand.   But that is just here and there and doesn’t deter from the movie.

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2/27/13

Moonlight Kingdom

Netflix says: 

Wes Anderson’s quirky drama follows the frantic search that ensues in a small New England town when two 12-year-olds fall in love and run away together. As the townsfolk hunt for the vanished kids, a storm causes even more profound communal upheaval.

Cast:
Jared GilmanKara HaywardBruce WillisEdward NortonBill MurrayFrances McDormandTilda SwintonJason SchwartzmanBob BalabanHarvey Keitel

Carol says:

I was trying to figure out how to explain this movie.  I thought of the word “quirky” before reading the Netflix description, so felt very smart!  It is quirky, funny, different, fast paced (as opposed to really slow pace) and just put together differently.  It is a nice movie.

It is about 2 kids falling in love.  About how they are just different from other kids; the boy is in a scout group and the others really do not care for him because he is just different.  The girl is a loner.  They meet and fall in love immiedately.

They take off together and it develops into the relationship of her parents, the behavior of the othe scouts, the scout master and the local sheriff.  While it is all improbable, it is a kick to watch.  So the kids take off, the others search for them, they are found, and what happens next.  The humor, which is here and there throughout the movie is dry and very witty.   When the movie starts, just give it a little time to get going.

It is just a different movie and we enjoyed it.  Oh, and there a lots of adults in the movie so it isn’t just 1 1/2 hr of watching kids.  And that was just the right amount of time for this movie – not to long.

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2/20/13
Netflicks says:
  1. Everything Must Go2010R97 minutes
  2. Director-writer Dan Rush makes his film debut with this dramedy based on a Raymond Carver short story about Nick (Will Ferrell), a good-hearted but relapsed alcoholic who decides to live on his front lawn after losing his job and being thrown out by his wife.
  3. Cast:
  4. Will FerrellRebecca HallMichael PeñaStephen RootLaura DernGlenn HowertonShannon WhirryJason Spisak
Carol Says:
Will Farrell, within the first few minutes of the movie, gets fired from his job, goes home and finds his wife has left him and he is locked out of the house and loses his recovering alcoholic status.  If you saw the previews, you know he then lives on his front lawn throughout the movie (except the last few minutes).  Oh, he also gets all of the neighbors mad at him.  It goes on and on with an odd twist at the end, and suddenly it is over (thank goodness) and we went “huh?”
And that is my review of this movie.  That should tell you something.
2/13/13
Door to Door
Directed by Steven Schachter. With William H. Macy, Kyra Sedgwick, Kathy Baker , Joel Brooks. A man with cerebral palsy is determined to become a salesman.
 Netflix said:This inspiring made-for-cable movie tells the story of salesman Bill Porter (William H. Macy), who came into contact with many people during his decades of knocking on doors. Porter, suffering from cerebral palsy, didn’t allow his condition to stop him from pursuing a career, and his story touched the hearts and lives of many of his potential customers. Macy also collaborated on the script with director Steven Schachter.
Carol Says:
I have not been to a current movie in a few weeks, so I went to my little list I keep of “movies I like”.  Maybe someone will ask me for movie recommendations, so I keep this list.
It has been awhile since I saw this movie, so you are not going to get the best review ever (not that I give great reviews, but….)  but what I can tell you is that this is a feel good movie, heart warming, and inspiring.  And a true story (as much as Hollywood can get to one).
Bill Porter is a door-to-door salesman, for Watkins, who has cerebral palsy.  Due to his cerebral palsy, he was unable to obtain a job.  He refused to go on disability.  He convinced Watkins to give him a job and actually ended up being their top salesman.  He gets to know people on his route and actually becomes a part of their lives.
Mr. Porter is so inspiring that I have put in this web site if you would like to read more about him:
I hope you will rent this movie.  Truly, you will feel good and inspired.
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2/6/13
From Wikipedia:
Silver Linings Playbook is an American romantic comedy-drama film directed byDavid O. Russell,[4] from a screenplay by Russell, adapted from the novel of the same name by Matthew Quick. The film stars Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, with Robert De NiroJacki WeaverChris TuckerAnupam Kher andJulia Stiles in supporting roles.
Carol says:
Silver Linings Playbook
What an excellent movie, in so many ways!  First, we must have laughed so much (more than others in the theatre?) and at other times felt such emotion for each character in the movie.  The acting is superb – it was like each actor was living the person/life they were portraying.
It starts where Pat is getting out of the mental facility where he has been hospitalized.  He goes back home to live with his parents to get more stability in his life, and Pat  hopes to get back with his estranged wife.  He meets Tiffany, who has her own issues;  Tiffany helps Pat to see a few truths in himself and brings a focus into his life.  Then there is the whole family dynamics and all of their friends and those interactions.  They are a close knit family/friends group.  All of it is just every day life that can be found anywhere (however, they are not a quiet bunch of people!)
So this movie hit me on many levels – humor, family dynamics, friendships, how hard it is to live with mental illness for the patient, family and friends, the caring and trust.  Well, I am sure I left something out so you can go see the movie and figure it out.  You will be glad you did.
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1/30/13

New Year’s Eve

Amazon Says :
New Year’s Eve is all about parties, glitz, a midnight kiss, and maybe a few short-lived resolutions, right? Or could it be about something more? Valentine’s Day writer Katherine Fugate and director Garry Marshall have once again joined forces to explore one of the most emotionally charged days of the year. Their uncanny ability to tell multiple stories at the same time, to intertwine those stories in the most unexpected ways, and to make sure viewers are emotionally invested in every single character makes the film an intriguing puzzle. Of course, a cast list that reads like an award-nomination roster doesn’t hurt its success either. Among the host of “main characters” in the story is Claire Morgan (Hilary Swank), the woman in charge of the ball drop in Times Square. Naturally things don’t go quite as planned and she’s forced to do some serious on-the-spot improvising–oh, and it should be noted that she’s deathly afraid of heights and there’s somewhere else she really should be on New Year’s Eve. Then there’s the suddenly rebellious tween daughter Hailey (Abigail Breslin), who runs off to meet her boyfriend in Times Square for a New Year’s Eve kiss, with her panicked mom (Sarah Jessica Parker) in hot pursuit. Mousy secretary Ingrid (Michelle Pfeiffer) decides to finally act on her long list of New Year’s resolutions and enlists the unlikely help of courier Paul (Zac Efron). An exclusive New Year’s Eve party throws together caterer Laura (Katherine Heigl), entertainer Jensen (Jon Bon Jovi), and sous chef Ava (Sofia Vergara). And then there’s Sam (Josh Duhamel), a wealthy playboy who just can’t seem to resist keeping an unlikely appointment to meet a mystery woman he met by chance last New Year’s Eve and hasn’t seen since (think An Affair to Rememberand Sleepless in Seattle). Other notable talent includes Ashton Kutcher, Ryan Seacrest, Hector Elizondo, Halle Berry, Robert De Niro, Lea Michele, Cary Elwes, Seth Meyers, and a host of others. While this film could easily run like a parade of stars or a rehash of the successfulValentine’s Day, it’s a powerful film in its own right that leaves viewers pondering whether New Year’s Eve might really be about second chances, hope, and embracing what will be. –Tami Horiuchi
Director/producer Garry Marshall brings together an stellar ensemble cast to celebrate love, hope, forgiveness, second chances and fresh starts, in intertwining stories told amidst the pulse and promise of New York City on the most dazzling night of the year
Carol Says..
New Year’s Eve
Now, who doesn’t love a Garry Marshall movie?  This movie came out a little over a year ago and we just watched it on TV (HBO).  It is a delight.  And full of actors that we all know – when Garry is making a movie, those actors beg to be in his movie.  As we were watching it, there would be an actor that we had no idea was in the movie and we would just start laughing…they are all in it.
The movie is about various people, unrelated, and what they are doing for New Year’s Eve – leading up to the big night and the actual night itself.  It is just a fun movie and I say, get the coke and popcorn out and just have a fun time watching it.  And see if you can figure out who the gal is that he is going to meet at the end….
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1/23/13
The Ghost And Mrs. Muir
Sometimes it is nice to go back in time – I mean really back in time.  When I was a little girl my mom let me stay up and watch this movie.  You might think it would scare a little kid, but it didn’t.  It came out in 1947, but of course I didn’t see it until about 10 years later – a rerun on TV.   This movie is a classic.
It is about a woman and her child who move into the country and into a haunted house.  They didn’t know it was haunted, of course.  She meets the ghost (and it is a bonus he is handsome!), she writes a book about his life….they fall in love, but it just isn’t practical and so he goes away.  But I don’t want to tell  you the rest, but it is good.
It is charming and delightful.  So go back in time and enjoy this movie!
1/16/13
Born Into Brothels
(Born Into Brothels: Calcutta’s Red Light Kids)

2004R85 minutes

British filmmaker Zana Briski’s Oscar-winning documentary is a portrait of several unforgettable children who live in Calcutta’s red-light district, where their mothers work as prostitutes to ensure their survival. Spurred by the kids’ fascination with her camera, Briski decides to teach them photography. As they begin to look at and record their world through new eyes, the kids awaken to their own talents and sense of worth.

Carol Says:

I saw this movie a few years ago.  Because movie theatres are about 1 hour from my house, I really do not get there much.  Really.  So I decided to look at the movies we ordered and watched through Netflix.  And this one popped out at me.
This is not for the faint of heart, in the sense of wanting life to be perfect.  It is not bloody and violent, just a straight on look at life for the women working in brothels, and more at the life that their children lead.
Zana Brisky starts working with the children through photography and opens a whole new world to them.  Seeing them learn about photography and the opportunities out there for them is heartwarming.   While their life continues as they know it, and things do not change totally, it does open a window for them.
I have not been to India, and I am guessing if you do go that this is not on the tour.  I learned a lot watching this documentary.

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1/2/13 The Guilt Trip

The Guilt Trip is a 2012 American comedy film directed by Anne Fletcher from a screenplay written by Dan Fogelman, starring Barbra Streisand and Seth Rogen.

Netflix says:

After Andy Brewster invents a fabulous new organic cleaner, he goes on a cross-country road trip to promote it. His mother, Joyce, comes along for the ride but soon discovers that her son has an ulterior motive: fixing her up with a long-lost flame. Cast: Barbra StreisandSeth RogenAdam ScottColin HanksKathy NajimyNora DunnAri GraynorCasey Wilson

Dani and I went to see this movie today, and it was a kick.  Dani was laughing through the whole thing; I either laughed or was amused.  There are also some poignant moments.

The scenes are “tight”, i.e. they do not drag on.  And they are unpredictable.  We both thought that the scene would go one way, but it just went another.

The chemistry between Streisand and Rogan is just perfect.  Streisand is not doing the silly character that I think of her doing in some of her past movies.  The timing is just right on.

There are some great lines and the acting was very good.  And when you go see this movie, think of me:  one time David and I were going to a movie.  He pulled up by the ticket counter, I popped out and got the tickets.  I jumped back into the car and said “OK, I’ve got the tickets” just to see some guy in the drivers seat, looking at me in shock.  Yep!  Wrong car.  I thought it was hilarious.

For a light hearted movie, feel good movie, go see this.