Sara’s Achievement: Irony of ironies: Although
Sara Miller McCune’s hoped-for achievement in
recent months has been to rescue the Santa Barbara
from the clutches of Wendy McCaw,
Sara’s been named as one of three News-Press Lifetime
Achievement Award recipients. McCune, who has been leading an
effort to buy the paper, will be honored at a November 11
News-Press dinner. (Mighty strange times in our little
town, eh?) I left a message for Sara but at this writing, no reply.
Should be a fun little soiree, if Sara actually shows up, eh? Sara
was chosen by a group of past honorees, the usual procedure. I’m
told that she’s accepted the award and will in fact be there.

Wendy Suing The Indy: Invites to the
bash might even be accompanied by summons to depositions and
service of the lawsuit. Wendy announced late Thursday, after
The Indy was published (interesting timing), that she was
suing the paper in federal court for obtaining “two different
confidential unpublished articles” that never saw the light of day
in the News-Press.

In response, Indy publisher Randy
announced: “I would like to assure the powers
that be at the News-Press, as well as the community, that
it will take more than specious bullying tactics to silence us at
The Independent.”

Ellen and the Tabs: The tabloids are having a
field day with news that comedian Ellen
bought a $16.5 million home in Montecito.
First, the National Enquirer claimed that she and partner
Portia de Rossi plan to wed there next
summer; actually go through a commitment ceremony since same-sex
marriage isn’t legal (yet) in California. Now the London Free
and Ottawa Sun say the two “are talking
seriously about adopting a baby.” It may be just a coincidence, but
the new mansion has a nursery, and not for plants.

Illegal Political Signs: Not so many so far,
probably because there are no Santa Barbara City Council seats up
for grabs; still too many defacing the land with impunity. I like
the idea of the city and county setting a task force out on patrol,
paid for by sign fines. Main violations: Excessive sized signs and
signs in the public right of way. A school board candidate, of all
things, or the candidate’s campaigners, is one offender.

High Cost of Health Net: An angry senior
citizen complains to me that he got a premium notice from Health
Net Seniority Plus Ruby billing him for what he calculates to be a
256 percent monthly premium hike.

Honoring Harriet: Former mayor Harriet
will be honored at a Hotel Andalucia fundraiser
November 11 to benefit the Garden Court Endowment. That is
dedicated to assisting frail, low-income seniors to live
independently. The event will feature a progressive dining and wine
buffet, silent and live auctions, with special hotel room packages
available. Price of the 6:30-9 p.m. event is $125. RSVP to
Kelly Sheets at 560-7993.

Diamonds in the County: Laura Kath points out
that seven of the 10 AAA Four-Diamond ratings given by the Auto
Club in Santa Barbara County are in the Santa Ynez Valley. The two
restaurants are the Ballard Inn Restaurant and
The Willows at the Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez.
Hotels honored are Petersen’s Village Inn in
Solvang, Chumash Casino Resort, and Santa
Ynez Inn
, the Inn on Summer Hill in
Summerland, Harbor View Inn in Santa Barbara,
Ballard Inn, Fess Parker’s Wine Country Inn &
in Los Olivos, and his Doubletree
in Santa Barbara.


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