APRIL FOOL: Almost all the cartoons in the New Yorker magazine’s April 25 issue were devoted to razzing Donald Trump, one way or the other, including Roz Chast’s “April, Fool” spoof.

In it, Trump reveals that his candidacy was just one big put-on. Hey, he’s not running after all. The pretend newspaper headlines “Trump Comes Clean: ‘Just a Joke, Folks!’” … “Amazed Anyone Believed He Was Serious.”

In another cartoon, a woman opens the door to her husband’s office, where he’s working at his desk: “Stop ​— ​that Trump cartoon you came up with this morning just happened.”

Barney Brantingham

PLAY IT AGAIN: And sing along. When Carpinteria’s Plaza Playhouse Theater celebrates its 88th birthday Saturday, April 30, Casablanca will be screened and moviegoers will be invited to sing those memorable words. What song? “As Time Goes By,” of course, a number the producer wanted to throw out of the movie. Twenty bucks gets you in for the 6 p.m. reception and pre-show entertainment; 7 p.m. movie: Bogie, Ingrid Bergman, and Dooley Wilson, who of course sang the memory-drenched song. It’s my all-time favorite movie. Many moons ago I was lucky enough to interview the co-scriptwriter, Howard Koch. When Casablanca was being made, no one involved had any idea they were making Hollywood history, he told me.

TRAVEL WOES: Bill Tomicki, editor of Montecito-based Entree high-end newsletter, wonders if hoteliers ever spend a night in their own rooms. “We guess not, judging by the missteps we find so often, like square soaps, soaps that are wrapped too tightly with plastic or paper … We hate soap dispensers in the bath, phones we cannot figure out, lighting that takes a visit from the engineer to decipher and any hotel that puts so much reading crap in the room that you can’t find a place for your own crap. And stop turning the radio on when we are not there, please. And not coming back for the room service table.”

LOVE LEFT BEHIND: You’d be surprised what people leave in books donated to Planned Parenthood. Some items are baffling, some notes passionately loving or just plain odd.

Elizabeth Downing dropped off a huge bag of “detritus/ephemera” at The Santa Barbara Independent, stuff that PP volunteers discovered in just six months of sorting through donations for the annual book sale.

Here are a few gleanings: A postcard, “Chicks on Speed,” apparently referring to a record label … “I received your note and understand completely,” read one postcard. “I really prefer one on one myself” … A birthday card: “I am also delighted to celebrate the fact of your continued existence on the planet” … Someone kept a reminder of the late airline, TWA. “Sorry,” read the red-lettered placard. “This seat is OCCUPIED!” … A note: “I was sorry to hear about your marriage [what?] but I believe that one door opens a brighter and better future” … Someone jotted a to-do reminder on an airline boarding pass, including “sex” … “[T]he meaning of life is to find your gift,” reads one scrap of paper, “the purpose of life is to share it with others” … A postcard from New Zealand shows a lamb being followed by a Dalmatian puppy. “Sheep Mustering,” reads the caption. On the reverse someone wrote: “Officially the dumbest New Zealand card I’ve come across” … “Holy Dodgers!” prays a red-robed Catholic cardinal on a postcard … A mother writes of a child’s birthday: “Good as gold, golden child, you color my world” … A writer just home from a visit tells her host, “You can still worry about me in Santa Barbara ​— ​there are numerous evils to be found there, too. Oh my gosh, I left the dirty dishes in the sink ​— ​yikes forgive me” … An overwhelmed woman pens a letter in gorgeous handwriting, “You truly are a deep prophetic voice for all of creation” … A note on yellow paper to Sally: “I (heart) u! u sexy person!” … And finally, a warm memory of (lost?) love: “I think of a day in the sun, long ago. We lay on the deck in perfect stillness and friendship, luminous, harmonious, lovely, once upon a time, time alone with you, beautiful you.”


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