Thursday, October 2, 2008
A LITTLE SEASONING… It’s October. I don’t remember the last time I saw rain around here, felt its freshness wash over me. I feel dried out, brown and droopy, my movements hampered by limbs turned brittle, foliage crisp and dusty. The earth needs a good rinse and so do we. On the first big day of rain we get I’m going outside to splash around like a little child– like when I knew it was totally normal to do so.
It’s funny how we kind of take water for granted. The need for fresh water is probably the foremost concern for the citizens of our world. Makes me think of my man Larry Gallery, a gem of a guy who was here working on the Moss Landing de-sal project. He was a great friend to the local restaurant community until he passed away a few months ago. Big Lar was someone who was doing something to try to fix the problem.
MEDICINAL TEA… Just finished reading Three Cups of Tea, a soul-strengthening book co-authored by and about Greg Mortenson, a one-man human resource who has dedicated his life to helping small villages in Pakistan and Afghanistan build schools and educate their youth, especially girls. By the sheer power of a loving heart, this selfless titan of a spirit freely moves among the most diverse factions of the Islamic world, welcomed like family for his intent to help desperate and forgotten humans begin to dream.
His insights from within a world we so flippantly vilify in its entirety cuts through mindless rhetoric and clarifies the muck of racist hysteria we have so easily embraced. Each page brought me deeper into this man’s singular genius, much of which owes itself to his sense of synergistic intelligence and belief in education as the only truly worthwhile offensive against the birthing of hateful ideologies.
Mortenson spoke at last week’s Carmel Authors and Ideas Festival. One of the necessary requirements of his position as head of the Central Asia Institute is to spread news about what he has been doing in the form of personal appearances to keep CAI funded. After I finished the book I ordered eight more copies on Amazon (a percentage goes to the foundation) to distribute to loved ones. Check it out, you’ll be deeply moved, www.threecupsoftea.com.
LOSING IT… I was looking through the computer folder in which I keep press releases and other tidbits to use here. Sometimes, for varying reasons (or, if I worked in the Central Valley, varying raisins), I lose track of an item I earmarked– or in this case, dog-eared– that I wanted to share with y’all. About three months ago, Anne-Lise Stannard sent me info about her Carmel Valley-based website, www.PlanetBlueDog.com. On it, Stannard sells all types of healthy, well-made products for your doggie, including supplements, toys, treats and various properly manufactured items no dog lover should be without. These are the types of products I would want my owner buying for me if I were a dog (go ahead, take your feeble swings).
Just so you don’t think I’ve gone soft, I’m as much a friend to our four-legged furballs as the next guy and I’m all for spoiling Fido a little, but sometimes we do blur the line between animal and human.
Speaking about blurring the line, bipolar disorder is a very real and debilitating mental state. Recently, Gerald Slota, an artist in NYC, had six of his photo illustrations, including the cover shot, featured in the New York Times Magazine with an article on child bipolar disease. He’s a close friend of our own local artiste clan, Jane Morba and Kevin Gould (www.amazingjane.com). She’s a gifted photographer, he’s a gifted musician and they combine talents to capture the magical moments from people’s weddings and other events. Jane spent four years shooting at– I mean for– us here at the Weekly. Kevin is one of the founding members of Cachagua Playboys. Nice couple.
BABY ME… Hey, I mentioned Bill and Heather Rammel’s new baby, Cynthia Kaye Lynn. She entered this world at CHOMP like so many others around these parts. Also like so many over the past 20 year, Maria Salameh (if that name sounds familiar, she’s married to Anton & Michel’s Tony), an obstetric nurse who has had more deliveries than FedEx, had a hand in this one. Bill told me that Heather was having a difficult time delivering. The staff got on the horn and called for Maria, who walked in, and as Bill recalls: “Everything got nice and the baby just came right out.” Having witnessed the of both my children, I believe wholeheartedly that Maria somehow electromagnetically realigned the reality of that time/space moment. There are a lot of lucky parents and children walking around here thanks to another of our local treasures, Maria Salameh.
While I’m on the subject, ran into Rob and Michaela Weakley (Pebble Beach Food & Wine) at the new Lalla Grill in Del Monte Center. They’re expecting twin girls. Michaela is radiant and carrying like a Hollywood mom and they’re both really excited. Rob told me they are contemplating names with the two frontrunners being Mercedes and Alexus.
MAKE IT SNAPPY… The Weekly’s own Windy “Sunny” Osborn is having a showing of her photography on Oct. 3 at Homescapes in Carmel, Seventh and Dolores, 624-6499, check it out, she’s good… Oktoberfest at Sticks in Spanish Bay, also on Oct. 3… happy hour is on at the C Bar in the Clement Hotel on Cannery Row. While you’re down there, check out the fabulous Scheid Vineyards Tasting Lounge across the street. They’re doing innovative collaborations with the Culinary Center, Earthbound Farms, Lulu’s Chocolates– everybody… www.wineandfoodfestival.org gets you the schedule of events for Salinas Rotary’s Valley of the World Wine & Food Festival… I’m gone.