Thursday, April 29, 2010

Michael G. Laurendeau playing on that diamond in the sky.

Mike was one of those people that was so smooth and gifted on the ball field. He could run , hit and throw with the best. And he was really a good guy. He played on my softball team just a few years ago, so this is really hard to see his passing. Way too young.

Michael passed away Saturday April 24 suddenly with a heart attack at the age of 49 years. He was born in Eureka on February 25, 1961, the second son of George and Jessie Laurendeau. He attended elementary schools in Cutten and graduated from Eureka High School in 1978. He attended College of the Redwoods for two years. Michael participated in Baseball, Football, Wrestling and Basketball starting at 8 years of age, but his favorite was Baseball where he had a real talent. During his years he was involved in several serious accidents but survived. He also spent some years where drugs took him down the wrong path but was working hard to change his lifestyle as he had a cardiac disability and a desire to change.

Mike is survived by his daughter Michelle Barnes (Miles) of Ashland, parents George and Jessie, brother Daniel (Reeda), niece Shayla and Kelsy Portland, Oregon, sister Louise Pratt (Elton) and nephew Roger Jr. and niece Paige Matthews of Lauton, Oklahoma, cousin Sharon Thompson and Karen Steinblock, Jeff Klopp, Uncle Frank Klopp and Aunt Mimi Henkes, Mary Wright, alex McMillan, Denise Theodore, and best friend Sharon Delong. Mike was preceded in death by his big brother William (Bill), Aunt Joann Klopp, and Uncle Guy and Eina Laurendeau.

There will be no formal service, but a memorial will be held on Saturday, May 1 at 2520 Hubbard Lane 2:00-5:00 pm at the Community Center (The Meadows). Please come with a few stories of the good life as he called it.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Democratic Moderates vs Progressives. Central Committee wars to the south.

Moderate Democrats in San Francisco often complain that far-left politicians don't represent their values. Middle-class families are frustrated that their concerns - like safe streets - are undermined by ideologues with wild claims of a "police state." Developers are exasperated when their projects are subjected to endless delays, even when the property has been a vacant eyesore for years.

Would you like to see things change?

Then I've got some bad news for you.

You're going to have to get involved - or at least start paying attention.

The next two months will see a battle for the political soul of the city. It will pit the progressives against the moderates in a face-off that will have huge implications in the November elections and, perhaps, the election of the next mayor. The key is control of an obscure but incredibly influential organization called the Democratic County Central Committee.

Rather than complaining about the direction of the city, middle-of-the-road Democrats have to get active. They have to vote in the June DCCC election and they have to do their homework on the candidates to learn if they represent moderate values.

"If you want to see change in the city, change to the culture of the Board of Supervisors, and bring some common sense and reason back to the city, it starts with the DCCC," said David Latterman, a local pollster.

If you are not sure what the DCCC is, you are not alone.

"If you stopped people on the street and asked them what the DCCC was, most of them wouldn't know what you were talking about," Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier said.

San Francisco political insiders know. The DCCC endorsement doesn't necessarily mean a win in every election - it just seems to work out that way. In 2008, the DCCC went 6-for-6 in supervisor races (the seventh, Ross Mirkarimi, used to belong to the Green Party and was not eligible for a Democratic endorsement) and 3-for-4 in the school board elections.

That's no surprise. San Francisco is a liberal Democrat town. When the official voice of the local Democratic committee sends out recommendations in mailers - and it has a nearly unlimited budget to do so - voters listen.

"But when Mrs. Jones receives her Democratic voter guide in the mail," said Scott Wiener, former chairman of the DCCC and candidate for supervisor in District Eight, "she's thinking of the party of Barack Obama, not the party of Aaron Peskin and (Supervisor) Chris Daly."

There's the rub. In 2008, Peskin and Daly unapologetically staged a takeover of the DCCC. They ran a slate of well-known names, including Eric Mar, David Campos and David Chiu, all of whom won seats as supervisors later that year. When they won seats on the DCCC, Wiener was voted out as chairman and replaced by Peskin, the former president of the Board of Supervisors.

Now, there's nothing illegal or evil about that. In fact, a few years ago people complained about then-Mayor Willie Brown controlling the DCCC. Peskin and Daly promised to dismantle the Willie Brown machine.

They did. Then they created their own.

"Aaron Peskin is building a political machine that would make Willie Brown blush," Wiener said.

Campos scoffs at that idea.

"We don't sit around trying to figure out what we, as a machine, should do," he said. "I talk to everybody."

Maybe so, but with the DCCC's unmistakable power, a progressive voting majority will guarantee endorsements of far-left candidates in the November elections for supervisor. And remember, if Gavin Newsom leaves office as mayor, the supervisors will elect his successor. The stakes are huge.

The election for the DCCC is in June. You should be sure to vote. And you should make sure you know who you are voting for.


Friday, April 23, 2010

Green Sturgeon in Humboldt Bay! None local?

I went to the Humboldt Bay Symposium today and was blown away by a presentation by Bill Pinnix of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Green Sturgeon monitoring in Humboldt Bay. I have fished about all sides of this bay and sloughs and have never caught or witnessed a sturgeon being caught in the bay. I have seen many from the Trinity river though. Apparently Humboldt Bay has thousands of readings of these fish that are tagged between April and October in the far North Bay near Arcata. Kayakers have witnessed them at certain tides and were asking if they were legal to catch. It sounded like fishing laws for Sturgeon are vague. These fish as adults are generally 6-7ft and over 100lbs. They live around 70 years and are very prehistoric looking.

Now get this. These fish that are monitored are from the Sacramento River, San Pablo Delta, Rouge River and other rivers north. And while we have sturgeon in the Klamath and Trinity rivers in abundance, they avoid feeding in Humboldt Bay and seem to go everywhere north! There has been no recorded readings of Klamath or Trinity Sturgeon in Humboldt Bay!

Damn those fish! Make them go local!

Friday, April 16, 2010

RIP Haley. Way, way, way, too young. Condolences to my nephew Steve.

I never had the chance to meet by grand niece Haley. I had heard about her and Robin and I have always meant to go to New Mexico to visit my nephew Steve, who owns the La Provence French Restaurant and Scalo's Italian Restaurant in Albuquerque, but time and life always seemed to get in the way. My sister Juanita has always been on me to get down their way and now I feel so bad. I wish I had words and a great speech for this tragedy. Please send contributions to Youth Matters, c/o Scalo, 3500 Central Ave. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106. Haley was involved in many youth projects.

Haley Paternoster, 16, passed away in Albuquerque, N.M. on April 9, 2010. She captured her daddy's heart the moment she was born December 25, 1993, forming a unique bond no earthly thing could break. She is remembered for her beautiful eyes, brilliant smile, sense of humor and courage in the face of adversity. She was adored as "Sissy" by her young brothers, Jackson and Jameson, and had a tight grip on the heart of "Big Poppa," her Grandpa Pat. She was a sophomore at Media Arts Collaborative Charter School, where her teachers valued her academic dedication and creativity, and was preparing to enroll in Central New Mexico Community College for dual credit. Haley was bright, artistic and technologically gifted, a teen who loved music and fashion and was considering becoming a nurse. She was compassionate beyond words and, with her father Steve, co-founded Youth Matters in Albuquerque to provide funds and services for children involved in the children's court system. Through their work, the nonprofit provides clothing and basic necessities benefiting children in three programs: SNAP, for children involved in domestic violence; Children's Drug Court; and the Program for the Empowerment of Girls. Haley was predeceased by "Papa" Jack Fertig. She is survived by her parents, Steve and Jane Paternoster and Charla D. Davis; brothers Rodorick Rubio and Jackson and Jameson Paternoster, and grandmother Waddie Fertig, all of Albuquerque. Haley also is survived by her El Paso grandparents Nita Johnson and George Johnson and James R. and Margie Paternoster; her Aunt Laurie Paternoster and Uncles Michael Churchman and James R. Paternoster, Jr. She also leaves behind her loving cousins Megan and Justin Churchman of El Paso, and Madison McCarty of Washington. Memorial services will be April 17, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. at Rio Rancho Presbyterian Church in Rio Rancho, NM. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Youth Matters, c/o Scalo, 3500 Central Ave. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106. Those who wish to express their condolences may do so at Haley's care has been entrusted to: Daniels Family Funeral Services 2400 Southern Blvd SE Rio Rancho, NM 87124 (505) 891-9192

Perch'n on the Peninsula!

Samoa Peninsula Fire District
Announces the 1st Annual
Perch’n on the Peninsula
Surfperch Fishing Tournament and Pasta Feed Fundraiser!

SPFD is in need of a new AED (automated external defibrillator) and Digital Projector for firefighter training

Entry Fee: $25.00 per person.

All Tournament Participants must Register and Agree to the Waiver of Liability Terms prior to going fishing!

When: May 8th 2010, Fishing begins at 5:36 am, Check-in (Noon-2pm) deadline is 2pm, Pasta Feed Begins at Noon and Fundraiser Raffle begins at 3:30pm.
Where: Peninsula Elementary School, 909 Vance Ave. Samoa, CA. (Directly across the street from the Samoa Cookhouse)

Tournament Entry Registration: Will be available from 5:30 am to 10 am at the Peninsula Elementary School on Tournament Day. Doughnuts, and Tee Shirts will be for sale with free Coffee. You can also pre-register at Mad River Outfitters, Redwood Marine or at Englund Marine. For more information Contact;
Ben Smith at: 707-601-0375 (, or
Charlie Holthaus at: 707-499-7088 (
Tournament Registration Includes: One (1) Entry into Door Prize Raffle (Limited to Tournament Participants Only, door prize tickets will be supplied upon check-in), Admission to Spaghetti Feed and Fundraiser ($5.00 value) and 5 Complementary raffle tickets ($5.00 value).

Tournament Prizes:-10% of entry proceeds awarded for largest overall fish (Up to $625.00*).
-10% of entry proceeds awarded for largest combined limit of three (3) fish (Up to $625.00*).
The more participant’s the higher the payout (*Based on 250 Participants)!
Tournament Judging: Fish will be judged by Total Length.


Admission Fee: $5.00 Per Person (Free for Children Under 6 and Tournament Participants).
Pasta Feed and Raffle Ticket Sales: Noon to 3:30 pm
Raffle Drawings*, Door Prize* and Tournament Prize Awards*: Begins at 3:30pm
-$1.00/ticket raffle will include all items donated by local sponsoring businesses *
-$5.00/ticket 50/50 raffle will consist of a single cash prize worth 50% of 50/50 raffle ticket sales.*


Tournament Rules:

1. All California Department of Fish and Game Ocean Sport Fishing Regulations shall be adhered to. As per DFG regulation, the minimum size for Redtail surfperch is 10.5 inches, any sub-legal fish will not be accepted. All adult anglers over the age of 16 must possess and present a current California Sport Fishing License at the registration table.
2. You must fish on the day of the tournament, any fish caught before the day of the tournament will not be accepted. You must return and check in at the registration table between Noon and 2pm with your catch. Late arrivals will not be accepted.
3. Only Surfperch in the family Embiotocidae are eligible, any other fish species will not be accepted. Any frozen, freezer burned, undersized or manipulated fish will not be accepted. All fish will be measured by tournament staff and no squeezing, bending, tweaking or manipulations of any sort will be allowed (please take good care of your fish, any bent, twisted and/or rigor-mortised fish will be measured as-is and not straightened out). All measurements by tournament staff are final and no re-measurements will be allowed. If there is a tie for largest fish, those anglers’ second largest fish will be judged for the tie breaker, if the tie cannot be broken the prize money will be split evenly between all tied anglers.
4. You may fish anywhere you want within ocean waters (Humboldt Bay is considered ocean waters, river mouths and estuaries are not considered ocean waters), as per DFG regulation.
5. Samoa Peninsula Fire District volunteers and Board members are NOT eligible to participate in the Tournament.
6. All Participants shall read and agree to the Waiver of Liability Terms prior to participating in the Tournament. All Participants shall supply their Name, Phone Number, Signature and Date on the Tournament Entry Form at the time of Registration as acceptance of the Waiver of Liability Terms. Minors (under 18 years old) shall have a responsible parent or guardian sign on their behalf. Tournament Entries are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee endorses candidates April 14th, 2010.

The Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee (HCDCC) will be holding their endorsement general committee meeting tomorrow Wednesday April 14th, at the Humboldt Area Foundation at 6:30pm on Indianola Blvd. The meeting is open to the public and might be spirited. I requested the executive board to not endorse any candidates due to the many Democrats running against each other. My motion was voted down, so now we are going into a very ugly scenario. Why should Democrats vote for one over another in a Primary election? I say let them battle it out in those elections that aren't winner take all.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Bass signs up!

This weekend the Bass campaign went ahead and put up some signs. Hundreds actually. There were many volunteers in this process. Thanks you all! Now, back to the door knocking.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Potential Freshwater Tissue employees please respond!

The Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers (AWPPW) local 49 had a lively well attended general meeting tonight and we need some help. If you worked at Evergreen Pulp and have the desire to work for Freshwater Tissue in the near future, please e-mail me with your current address and phone number. I would suggest that to former salary workers also.

Local 49 Standing Committee Representatives have talked to Freshwater CEO Bob Simpson and have had positive response. Bob is hoping for the return of 65% of the past labor force, and would like for us to identify them before/during continued negotiations. The hopes is to have a labor agreement by June 9th! If Freshwater Pulp is able to garner a permit from the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board meeting on June 10th at Santa Rosa, Freshwater wants to start bringing back workers on June 11th.

This is fast and furious and just good news for many Vendors, Longshoreman, Truck Drivers, Sawmills, Harbor District, Dock Workers, Local Labor Tradesmen and the many unemployed Humboldt County residents who can be a part of an environmentally friendly project on a huge "Green" stage.

Good luck to Bob Simpson and Freshwater Tissue!

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Robin on the ballot last for Humboldt County Democratic Central Commitee! How do they decide that anyways?

The way make the decision on what ballot designation, or where you are placed order wise on a ballot is called a "Random Alphabet Drawing." The Secretary of State does a drawing of the alphabet from 1. to 26. This year was 1. Y, 2. B, 3. N, 4. F, 5. T, 6. S, 7. W, 8. L, 9. P, 10. Z, 11. V, 12. X, 13. Q, 14. A, 15. I 16 O, 17. J, 18. R, 19. G, 20. D, 21. C, 22. U, 23. M, 24. K, 25. H, 26. E.

So in the county elections that are just by districts, the ballot orders are:

5th District Supervisor:

1. Ryan Sundberg
2. Jeff Lytle
3. Pat Cleary
4. Pat Higgins

4th District Supervisor:

1. Virginia Bass
2. Bonnie Neely
3. Jeff Leonard

4th District Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee:
(Voting for 4 out of the 5)
1. Bob Service
2. Pam Service
3. Charlene Cutler-Ploss
4. Richard Marks
5. Robin Marks

When you have 2 running with the last same name, the first name in the criteria.

In the County wide races, they do by supervisor districts and the order changes for each district.

Just in case you were wondering.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

The rain is here, must be baseball season!

It has been cold and rainy lately, so it must be baseball season. This is one time of the year that really gets under my skin in Humboldt County, the rotten spring weather. It also leaves our baseball and softball teams at a disadvantage as far getting on the fields to practice and play games. We need either all weather ball fields (think artificial turf)or a indoor facility (think roof over Eureka Babe Ruth or roof over any little league field in Humboldt). Anybody else out there feel this would be a good project for our community?