Can Water and Sanitary Work Together to Shape the Future of Montecito?
By Bob Hazard   |   April 8, 2021

A recent series of letters in the Montecito Journal has questioned the wisdom of the Montecito Water Board and the Montecito Sanitary Board’s studying the issue of consolidation. Jeff Kerns, a respected former Sanitary Director, has raised an important issue. He suggests that the first step is to define the problem you want to solve; only […]

The Farmer + The Flea
By Leslie Westbrook   |   March 26, 2021

On the last Sunday of every month, the Summerland Post Office parking lot on Lillie Avenue fills up with a cornucopia of flea market and food vendors. Even volunteers from CALM (Child Abuse Listening and Mediation) are onsite to raise funds and awareness of the nonprofit. While parking may be a challenge – “It’s a […]

 

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Perish Prolixity
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   March 25, 2021

When I was first privileged to write this column, I was set a 750-word limit. I knew that I could go a few words over or under, and nobody would care. But I decided to make a game out of turning in exactly 750 words each time. What made this relatively do-able was that, unlike […]

Our Solar System: The Leftovers
By Tom Farr   |   March 25, 2021

We all learned in school that there are eight planets (well, nine if you’re as old as I am), but our solar system is messier than that. There are millions of leftover rocks called asteroids; bits of ice and rock that come and go called comets; and objects out there beyond Neptune called, in dry […]

A Revolutionary Plan for Santa Barbara’s Children
By Laura Capps   |   March 20, 2021

There’s a lot that has me optimistic these days: the declining case rates of COVID, millions of people getting vaccinated, kids safely returning to the classroom and a return to competency from the White House. One of many positive developments that will have massive ramifications is the inclusion of the child benefit in the COVID […]

A Really Big GoFundMe
By Robert Bernstein   |   March 18, 2021

Network news shows tend to end with a feel-good story about people helping people. This often involves someone who got cancer, or some other dreaded disease, and neighbors and friends who mount a fundraiser for them. Sometimes, it even involves children setting up a lemonade stand for the cause. GoFundMe has raised $9 billion since […]

Smile!
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   March 18, 2021

In our culture, the act of smiling has not always had a very positive image. Among great paintings, I can think of only one that would qualify. It’s called “The Laughing Cavalier” by Frans Hals (1624), but he is only smiling, not laughing. By the time of World War I, however, it was a different […]

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They Call it Mellow Yellow… The Case of the Hidden Staircase
By Leslie Westbrook   |   March 18, 2021

The Internet and townsfolk are all abuzz about the Big Yellow House’s new “yellow” paint job. About a month ago, I received a text with a photo of the building being painted. It read: Dear Summerland correspondent, The Big Yellow House is being painted cream. Signed, Nancy Drew I was relieved that the super bright, […]

Labels
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   March 4, 2021

For many years, you couldn’t buy certain items, such as mattresses, in the U.S.A., unless they contained a federally required fabric label, or “tag.” I’m not sure exactly what information these labels provided, but what I do remember is that they also contained a very severe warning against removing them. Something like “DO NOT REMOVE, […]

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The Whine Club
By Deann Zampelli   |   February 25, 2021

I was going to be the “Cool Mom.” The “Let’s Play Hooky and Eat Ice Cream For Dinner Mom.” Or at least that was the plan. The cruel reality came crashing down during the COVID pandemic when, against my will, I blurted out to my children the words feared by parents and kids alike: “Because […]

Summerland Neighbors: Kevin Frank + Family
By Leslie Westbrook   |   February 25, 2021

Kevin Frank and his wife, Katie, owners of K. Frank, the Montecito men and women’s luxury and designer clothing store on Coast Village Road, moved to Summerland six years ago after being attracted by the “small town charm and walkability.” It wasn’t until they toured their house that they became gob smacked by the incredible […]

Rejection
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   February 25, 2021

Being rejected is a basic human experience, for which most of us need to be better trained than we probably are.  If you ask Mr. Google about rejections, he’ll give you many lists of famous and successful people who failed over and over again, but went on, and, through sheer persistence, became the stars and […]

A Few of My Favorite Things
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   February 18, 2021

My tastes in most categories are very conventional, so most of my favorites probably will not surprise you. In poetry, for example, at the top of my personal list is the piece known as “Gray’s Elegy in a Country Churchyard” – not to be confused with Gray’s Allergy. [Only kidding.] One reason I like it […]

Our Solar System: Saturn
By Tom Farr   |   February 18, 2021

30 June 2004, 7:30 pm. The VIP room at JPL is quiet as we all watch a thin line trace horizontally across the big screen at the front of the room. It’s the radio signal from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft as it speeds toward Saturn Orbit Insertion (SOI) after seven years in transit. JPL invites some […]

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