The Mayor of 42nd Avenue

eddie1Most days he would step inside the front door of our office on Northeast 42nd Avenue to declare, with a loud and dissonant voice, that it was going to rain that day; or announce something that was – or maybe wasn’t – happening up the street. He would then abruptly turn and leave to share his news report with other businesses or passersby along the avenue. Eddie Morgan, aka the Mayor of 42nd Avenue, was standing on the corner of 42nd and Alberta Street early one morning when he was shot to death.

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Didn’t See That Comin’

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This…

“In 2011, the state Legislature cut Texas’ family planning and women’s health program, which provide care and routine screenings for low-income women. Lawmakers slashed its budget by two-thirds—and kicked out women’s health providers that also provide abortions.”

Then this…

“Within a two-year period between 2010 and 2012, the rate of pregnant women dying in Texas doubled – and it’s not entirely clear why.”

From The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon

Smartphone Apps for Safe Travels

phoneI’m glad to have been a teenager in the time before cell phones and GPS tracking allowed parents to always know where their kids were. And as a parent of now-grown daughters, well, if you don’t want to know the answer, don’t ask the question.

Here are some useful smartphone apps, and not just for travelers. But don’t use them when you’re crossing a busy street.

The Other Marin

IMG_3193Marin County is known for a number of things: German automobiles cluttering its roads, George Lucas’s Skywalker Ranch and the stereotypical affluent California lifestyle in general. It’s also rolling hills and, miles from anything, the town of Nicasio, home to a church, a little league field, a volunteer fire department and the venerable Rancho Nicasio. The roadhouse was built in 1941, a year after the 1867-vintage Nicasio Hotel burned.

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Not In My Backyard!

ExxonMobil touts its success in extracting natural gas by fracking – hydraulic fracturing. They also want us to know how safe and inconsequential to the surroundings  it is. But just in case, ExxonMobil’s CEO Rex Tillerson is suing to prevent fracking near his property in Texas. It would impinge on his “rural lifestyle.”