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October 2009

Hail, Holy Pumpkin!


This time of year, the coast is colorfully speckled with this fabulous orange squash. Families are often seen picking out pumpkins in big patches by the side of the road. They grace front porches with beautiful color. Although pumpkins make lovely fall decorations, they make even better table fare. I wonder how many people fail to eat their lovely purchases as October comes to a close. After all, pumpkins are delicious baked, steamed, mashed, or in baked goods. They stand up well to spices, sauces, and soups. They can be served sweet, salty, or savory, so there is a flavor for everyone. Not only are pumpkins versatile, they are nutritious, a good source of fiber; vitamins A, B6 C, and E; thiamin; niacin; folate; iron; magnesium; phosphorus; riboflavin, potassium; copper; and manganese. Filled with the antioxidant beta-carotene, pumpkin may even protect the body from such diseases as cancer and heart disease. For calories spent, pumpkin packs in a lot of nutrition. A one-cup serving of mashed pumpkin is only 49 calories and 12 grams of carbohydrate. So why wait until Thanksgiving pie to enjoy a little pumpkin this season?  Enjoy some tonight. Here’s to your health!

Dr. Cynthia Luce, DC

Lucebones Chiropractic

Rockaway Beach, Pacifica

Spiced Baked Pumpkin


Cleaned pumpkin, sliced to quarter inch thickness

2 Tablespoons melted butter

1 Tablespoon organic brown sugar

pinch of sea salt

Freshly grated nutmeg

Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange the pumpkin single layer on cookie sheet.  Mix the brown sugar and salt into the melted butter. With a brush, brush the tops of the pumpkin with the butter mixture. Sprinkle freshly grated nutmeg over the top. Bake at 400° for 25 minutes until soft. Enjoy hot as a side dish or cold on a salad. 

Styrofoam Ban: Pacifica Pooh-Poohs Polystyrene


On October 26, 2009, Pacifica City Council unanimously approved a comprehensive polystyrene foodware ordinance, which goes into effect January 1, 2010, requiring all Pacifica restaurants to use biodegradable or recyclable containers and utensils for to-go (takeout) food orders. It also requires the city to practice what it preaches in all of its own purchasing, meaning no more Styrofoam cups at City Hall. The ordinance is the result of several years of lobbying and research. In the end, Millbrae's ordinance was used as the model this ordinance was based on. The final vote was 5-0, with several citizens speaking in favor of the ban, and no one speaking against it.

(Ian Butler reporting)

Walk on the Wild Side: PCT 26 Nature Videos


Pacifica Currents on our community television station PCT 26 creates various videos of San Mateo County coastal wildflowers and other natural sights and sounds. In one of the videos, Toni Corelli, Avis Boutell, and Nancy Frost describe native plants they have surveyed on Pacifica State Beach at Linda Mar, Pedro Point Headlands, and Rockaway Headlands. Eric Mayrand films the shows. Click the link above to see all of our community TV station's fine work, courtesy of Marty Anaya and his band of merry elves. Also, here is a link to the YouTube video of the TV show. When you click the link, if it says "video not available," just click the other three tours to the right: YOUTUBE

Possible Problems in Coastside Scavenger Sale; City Council Revisits the Issue, Votes to Continue Due Diligence on Transfer


The sale of Coastside Scavenger (CS) appears to be going forward. City staff has requested City Council to authorize the city manager to enter into negotiations for assignment of the solid waste franchise agreement from CS to Recology. City Manager Steve Rhodes also has requested authorization to employ HFH as the consulting firm for support in the change of waste haulers. The city also has requested authority to negotiate a "reimbursement agreement with Recology for costs associated with [the] assignment process."

But the sale has a condition that apparently has not been met: "The city cannot consider the assignment if Coastside (Scavenger) is in default. Coastside has been delinquent in its payment of franchise fees, and has been notified that the company is in default. All franchise fees must be current." The amount in default is not mentioned in the staff report.

City Council took up this matter at its October 26 meeting and voted to continue the due-diligence process leading to eventual takeover of the troubled garbage company.


Dangerous Precedent? Gov & Solons Dis CEQA

On October 22, Governor Schwarzenegger signed legislation giving Majestic Realty a full exemption from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), allowing them to push ahead with construction of a 75,000-seat stadium in the City of Industry (Los Angeles County). AB X3 81, authored by Assemblymember Isadore Hall, allows Majestic and Industry to sidestep the current lawsuit filed against the project and proceed without adequately addressing environmental impacts. The bill, introduced in the last hours of the 2009 legislative session, quickly passed through the Assembly. Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg initially held the measure in an effort to resolve legal challenges outside the legislature. When that failed, the Senate capitulated and passed the bill. With this measure, the governor and both houses of the legislature have suggested—for the first time—that they will interfere with active court cases, and deny citizens groups their due-process rights, if developers have enough money to hire lobbyists. Though this legislation sets a dangerous example, it must not become a precedent. Developers must not be allowed to purchase CEQA exemptions and sidestep laws that exist to protect every Californian. (Jake Sigg, Nature News)

Fox Pacifica Tie-Dye Pix: Stop, You're Killing Me!


Greetings from Riptide Readers


Posted by Fix Pacifica at 1:51 AM  Leave a comment...0 comments

100+ Coastside Environmentalists Spell Out 350 on Linda Mar Beach in Pacifica

350 photo

On Saturday, October 24, in solidarity with people from 181 countries, more than 100 Pacifica and other coastside environmentalists got together to spell out the number 350 on Linda Mar Beach. The event, part of the largest environmental action in history, was an effort to educate the public on the need to reduce carbon in the atmosphere to 350 parts per million (PPM). Learn more at  (Photo by Ian Butler)

Science Comedian Brian Malow

Brian Malow is Earth's Premier Science Comedian (available for off-world appearances if transportation is provided). Based in San Francisco, Brian has performed for NASA, JPL, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the American Chemical Society, Applied Biosystems, and various outlets of the National Academy of Sciences, and has been featured in the Washington Post, Washington Times, Nature, Chemical & Engineering News, and the San Jose Mercury News and on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (CBS). Brian serves on the Advisory Board of the USA Science & Engineering Festival, and is a video science correspondent for Time magazine's Web site. For more information: SCIENCE COMEDIAN


And for a taste of science comedy: SCIENCE COMEDY ON YOU TUBE

"It's as much about expanding the mind as it is tickling the funny bone." —Washington Times

Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty: Quick & Dirty Tips


Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty has written a new book  called The Grammar Devotional: Daily Tips for Successful Writing from Grammar Girl. Her earlier one (a New York Times best-seller) was Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing.

Twenty million podcast downloads say it all: Mignon Fogarty's kicky, practical, and easy-to-remember advice about style and usage has won her fans across the globe. Her first book, Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing, hit the New York Times bestseller list, and her weekly grammar podcast has been hailed by USA Today as "authoritative but warm." Now, in daily devotional form, Grammar Girl offers 365 lessons on language that are sure to inspire. Chock-full of bite-size writing tips, fun quizzes, and efficient memory tricks, The Grammar Devotional gives you the tools you need to improve your grammar and become an even better communicator, one day at a time.

Mignon Fogarty is the creator of Grammar Girl and the founder and managing director of Quick and Dirty Tips. Formerly a magazine writer, technical writer, and entrepreneur, she has a B.A. in English from the University of Washington in Seattle and an M.S. in biology from Stanford University. She lives in Reno, Nevada. Visit her website:

YouTube video:

Florey's Book Blog: Meet Local Authors


Riptide invited Aaron Schlieve of Florey's Book Co. to share information here about local authors featured at Florey's book-signing events. Aaron graciously agreed: "It's a great idea to have a local author section on the site. Anyhow, probably the easiest way to get the info I sent is to just go to the Florey's blog. That has any and all digital images of the books I have, as well as the (sometimes slightly reformatted) text that is in the emails I send to announce the events. If you want to go further back than what is up now, just go to the archives (near the top on the left). Thanks for the interest, and let me know if you need anything else." FLOREY'S BLOG

Recology Eyes Coastside Scavenger; City Council Gives It the Sniff Test



Recology, formerly known as Norcal Waste, is negotiating to buy the assets of Coastside Scavenger, and has submitted a $100,000 check to the City of Pacifica for an "assignment fee" in connection with the transfer. According to the City Council meeting agenda for October 19: "The final acquisition (of Coastside Scavenger) is conditioned, among other things, upon the successful assignment of the existing solid waste franchise agreement between the City and Coastside to Recology."

Coastside Scavenger "has been delinquent in its payment of franchise fees, and has been notified that the company is in default," according to the city's document. Consulting firm HFH is being recommended at a cost of $55,000 "to provide the city with support in analyzing and negotiating the assignment request with Recology." The consultant's budget has been reduced considerably from the last known city request. Coastside Scavenger had bounced checks to the city and also, it was alleged in a lawsuit, to employees.

In a letter to Pacifica City Manager Steve Rhodes dated October 7, 2009, Coastside Scavenger owner Louis Picardo wrote: "Just a note to say I have no problem with the assignment of the contract to RECOLOGY. I am currently negotiating the purchase price of the Company with them." Coastside Scavenger has been the only waste collection company servicing Pacifica for more than 50 years. The fate of Coastside's employee base in this transfer is unknown. City Council met again October 26 to discuss this item, and we await reports on the outcome of the meeting.

Computer Pros: Windows 7 Launch Help

Ed and Stephanie Vinces, Pacifica Computer Pros & Microsoft System Builders

Get hands-on experience in new Windows 7. We have several computers of various generations prepared with Windows 7 for you to test out the new features, including the new look and feel of the operating system, Jump lists, Snap, and Windows Search. The most important improvements are better performance, security options, pop-up controls, and new storage options. This version of Windows truly lets you “work the way you want.” For those of our customers and friends who have not been updated on our latest affiliation with TechShop, it is a 15,000-square-foot do-it-yourself workshop at 120 Independence Drive, Menlo Park. The space is designed to provide tools, equipment, training, work space, and a supportive, creative community so that we all can design and build things we want to make. We have been having a great time experimenting with the 45-watt laser, using plastic, cloth, and wood. Please call us to make an appointment for you to see the new Windows 7, not as much fun as TechShop, but still worth the effort:

Dennis Willis, Flick Nation: Movie Yearbook 2010


Local author Dennis Willis has a new book, Flick Nation: 2010 Movie Yearbook, a compendium of more than 500 current movie reviews and dozens of direct-to-DVD titles not covered in other books. Willis also writes about Oscar’s hits and misses, the surprisingly positive effects from online piracy, Hollywood’s obsession with rebooting franchises, and Blu-ray’s identity crisis. For more information about Dennis and his book, check out his websites:

Flick Nation:
Flick Nation Facebook:
Also be on the lookout for an article in Pacifica Tribune .
Available at Florey's Book Company, 2120 Palmetto Avenue, Pacifica, 650-355-8811, open  10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day!

300 Rally to Save Sharp Park Golf Course

A standing-room-only crowd of more than 300 supporters of San Francisco's endangered public golf courses  at Sharp Park and Lincoln Park jam-packed the Sharp Park Golf Course banquet room in Pacifica Thursday night, October 22, as San Francisco golf icons, labor unions, public- and private-course golfers, high school students, San Francisco and San Mateo County politicians, and the golf course's Pacifica neighbors called for preservation of the 77-year-old Alister MacKenzie municipal golf course. Calling destruction of the golf course "unthinkable," San Francisco favorite son Ken Venturi, the 1964 United States Open winner and retired TV sports broadcaster, extolled the links as an "unpretentious place," whose seaside location and historic MacKenzie design pedigree "connects golfers to the Scottish public course roots of the game." Venturi, Honorary Chairman of the San Francisco Public Golf Alliance, appeared in the form of his personal letter, read to the crowd by Bob Dellas Captain of the Honorary Society of San Francisco Golfers. "Without the public courses, golf becomes inaccessible. The game shrivels and dies," Venturi continued. "So I ... urge my friends and fellow San Francisco Bay Area golfers to preserve Dr. MacKenzie's legacy, and defend San Francisco's golf heritage and public courses... with your time, your money, and your passion. Do not let anybody destroy Sharp or Lincoln." Co-hosted by the Public Golf Alliance, State Assemblywoman Fiona Ma, San Francisco Supervisor Sean Elsbernd, and Pacifica Mayor Julie Lancelle, the meeting was addressed by speakers including San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrerra, Lancelle, Elsbernd, with an appearance by San Mateo County Supervisor Carole Groom. The diverse crowd included Sharp Park golfers, Pacifica homeowners and business leaders, two high school girls golf teams, representatives of San Francisco and North Peninsula private golf clubs, a cameo appearance by former U.S. Golf Association President Sandy Tatum, and a surprise supporting appearance by a large contingent of orange-shirt-wearing golf course gardeners, members of Laborers Union Local 261. Next on the agenda for the Sharp Park Golf Course will be the long-delayed report of the San Francisco Park and Recreation Department on potential alternative uses of the golf course, which is part of the 400-plus-acre San Francisco-owned Sharp Park. Recreation and Park Department spokespersons have announced that the report, still in preparation, will be publicly released in the first or second week of November. No details have been announced by the Department or the Board of Supervisors about the decision-making timeframe thereafter.  

Source: 235 Montgomery Street, Suite 400, San Francisco, CA 94104, 415-392-5431, ext. 203, SF PUBLIC GOLF

Department of Redundancy Department (DRED)


“I had to chuckle when I read your STRAIGHT FLUSH blurb last week. We used to have ATM machines (automatic teller machine machines). Now we have HET toilets (high efficiency toilet toilets). The IRS (Internal Revenue Service service) can't be far behind!” (Pierre Messerli, responding to the HET item here on Riptide and in my Pacifica Tribune column, Wandering and Wondering)