Plus Letters To the Editor
I doubt many of our readers will have heard of Cora Evans before picking up this week’s issue. Her story has a homegrown Henry Darger quality, with a mystical twist. It’s also an example of something I think is a key part of the alternative press mission: to take a local person who in certain cult circles has become quite famous, but is relatively unknown outside of that very specific subculture, and tell his or her story to the community at large.
In Evans’ case, her journey from obscurity to prominence within that subculture—which in this case is the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church—couldn’t be more extreme. When she died in Boulder Creek in 1957, none of her writings had even been published. It has been a small but dedicated crusade to get her where she is today, under consideration for sainthood. Georgia Perry’s cover story this week explains how Evans’ legacy evolved, but also delves deeper to consider the larger implications of not only this story, but also the mythos of saints and other mystic figures. Was Evans, a woman who claimed to have traveled through space and time with Jesus and experienced stigmata, a religious visionary with supernatural powers, or mentally ill? How did she produce her most sophisticated writings with little formal education? Perry’s story explores a fascinating boundary between rationality and belief.
STEVE PALOPOLI | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Re: “Is KUSP Going L.A.” (GT, 4/15): We used to have two community radio stations in the Monterey Bay, KAZU and KUSP. Both stations have moved to Washington D.C. and become part of NPR. NPR is great, but we only need one outlet for their programming, not three (KQED also broadcasts in the Monterey Bay area).
KUSP was established here with NPR first. KAZU was bought by Cal State and they brought in a manager from the same Santa Monica station that wants to take over KUSP. They started off by letting all the original DJs go, and then they brought in NPR to compete with KUSP. Because of that move by KAZU, lots of folks lost their jobs. Both stations programming the same NPR shows greatly reduced the income of KUSP by a lot.
KAZU is underwritten by Cal State, thus making it easier for them to keep their heads above water. Also important to know is that this is not a student station nor a teaching station. No students are used in the running of KAZU. We all loved having KUSP as a Santa Cruz local station. A few years ago they hired a new manager with a long history of running NPR stations. He moved to Santa Cruz to save the station, and instead he is now thinking of moving it to Santa Monica. The management is now being paid a lot of money (more than they can afford). If you look at the numbers, you will see that it takes a full pledge drive to pay the top management position.
This is supposed to be a local station. The only thing local is late night and some weekend shows. It is time this great piece of local history be given back to the community that supported it.
As an aside, KKUP in Cupertino has no paid staff and has been on the air for 45 years!
John Sandidge, Santa Cruz
Here’s to 40
Thank you so much for the brilliant writing and wonderful stories included in your 40th anniversary issue! I moved here from Michigan in 1971, and some of the articles in this issue reminded me of my own history in this great community. I was a hippie here in the early ’70s, and so much has changed, both around town and in our personal lives. Your stories in the Good Times really captured an era, a real walk down memory lane!
A special shout out goes to Cat Johnson for her story on the LGBT changes over the years. I would like to add these highlights: the first Gay Pride in 1975, and the political mobilization we did against Prop. 6, the Briggs Initiative, which would have banned gay people from teaching. Also, the disco era and Santa Cruz’s first gay bars, Mona’s and the Dragon Moon, where we could meet one another and dance the night away. Also, the Gay Men’s Drop In, the AGEM shows at the Civic which sold out for years, Triangle Speakers educating students about LGBT issues for over 25 years now; the growth of visible gay families, the fight for gay marriage, and the growth in visibility for the trans population right here in our town. Aren’t we all fortunate to live here?
Larry Friedman, Santa Cruz
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SET TO DROP The photographer who shot this photo at the Boardwalk sent along birthday wishes to both the Giant Dipper and our paper: “Looking forward to celebrating the Giant Dipper’s 100-year anniversary in nine years! It’s a truly great Santa Cruz institution, as is the Good Times.” Photograph by Ken Gunville.
CHAIN UP THE BOOZE
A couple of guests got carried away at GT’s 40th anniversary party last week, but we adored the note they left: “We enjoyed ourselves a little too much, and wound up taking these bottles of wine home with us. We feel terrible and therefore are returning them.”
No hard feelings, anonymous winos, your cosmic karma has been set straight.
The 28th annual Santa Cruz County Bike Week kicks off May 1, featuring a host of activities starting with Bike Night at First Friday at the Museum of Art & History, a railroad cleanup May 3, free breakfast for those participating in Bike t
o Work/School Day on May 7, and the opportunity to win a Blix Electric Bike. Ecology Action is always hard at work reminding us of how our carbon footprint affects our ecosystem, so cheers to 28 years of keeping Santa Cruz green. Check ecoact.org for a full schedule.
“I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.” — Nelson Mandela