WWII: Was John Reber a Wonder or a Blunder? B category looks good to me.

(The following piece is related to the Reber Plan; he’s the guy who wanted to turn San Francisco Bay into one giant lake after WWII. With military highways and military airports, too. I like the military highways because they are here, today, like Highway 101. I never thought of it as a military road; I thought it was for commuters, but I guess John Reber had other ideas…)

California Farmer (Pacific Rural Press–California Cultivators)

83 Stevenson Street

San Francisco 5, California

96th Year


The number one problem of California is water.

That’s why the California Farmer devotes so much time to the Reber Plan (discussed on the blog; I’ll find the link later) , and why I serve as president of the non-profit corporation which boosts the Rober Plan.

We are are wasting more good, fresh Central Valley Water through the Golden Gate each year than would be required to refill the underground and supply all the surface needs in the State.

Briefly the Reber Plan would build two wide earthn dams across San Francisco Bayand create two fresh water lakes in the north and the south, both connected by sa shipping channel.

[mor later.[

I don’t often post traveling videos

this special  one, featuring mostly very funny  smiling animals, guarantees human lip movements, too. 

Explains John Vonderlin:Hi June,

   In a bit of serendipity this 60 second video was in my Inbox this morning. I thought you might enjoy the message or song, even if you’re not a pet lover. I belong to several humor rings that send video clips amongst ourselves. While some are stupid and tasteless, many are hilarious or beautiful or inspiring. 
If you’d like me to forward the quality ones let me know. They often start my day with a laugh, a smile or a cluck and head shake.  Enjoy. John
To watch the video, you need to turn the sound ON your computer because there’s music that goes with the images.
To see the video called “Smile,” please click HERE
June adds: I love animals. I was the type who picked up strays all the time, you know, I was one of them in my “yoot.”I gave them to loving “parents” and now have two cats, Tami, the eelder, and Murray (also known as Cat) who is nearly a year old.

Comment: Those Swine Flu Masks Sure Remind Me of the 1919 Influence Pandemic

Gee, I don’t mean to be funny, but I hope they aren’t recycling those masks from the 1919 Influenza Pandemic.

They wore similar masks in San Francisco and San Mateo. (The opera was closed, schools, too) People flocked (flocked? you know what I mean.) I don’t have the accurate numbers although the SMC Health Dept  “may”–I think I wrote them at one point, and i I can find the reply I’ll post it).

In 1919, though, nobody wanted to wear the masks. Nobody believed they would save them from the deadly influenza which came back from aboard with the soldiers in WWII. Statred on the East Coast then moved West. Thank goodness, here in the Bay Area, we were hit the least.

They were ugly, too, the masks, and definitely unfashionable for the fashionable woman although some newspaper ads showed women in working clothes wearing a pretty hat and the ugly mask compared to a pig snout. 

(Today I talked to a doctor in Burlingame. He said he thinks they make the masks better today. At least you can paint and put sequins on them. He also said swine flu and influenza pandemic were very different but I was there when a patient called to find out if it was okay to take a cruise to Mexico and stay on the ship. It was decided that anybody who got off the ship could get it and give it to everybody on the ship.)

OOPS: I was not around in 1919, okay? But you can find info in the old papers and there are a couple of excellent books I have cited elsewhere on this site that mention all parts of the country, including the usual power grabbing—-in San Francisco and San Mateo.

I don’t know if the similarities are real but isn’t anybody more original these days? The Influenza Pandemic (which means worldwide, took the lives of millions, more than 20 million). And it wasn’t the old people who died. It was young. Turned out the silly masks protected nobody.

More from former Coastsider Katie, Now in Guatamala


Dear June

I took care of Les’ mother for the last four years of her life until she passed three years ago, so I have a (small) idea of what you’ve been through; that’s how I ended up at Lake Atitlan in Guatemala. It’s been three years of “coming back to life” there for me, and it couldn’t have been better.

As far as the piano goes, I always had a baby grand piano with me wherever I lived, but I never played for money, so many people don’t even know I played. I’ve played all my life, and rarely talked about it since it’s such a part of me, so I was very surprised to find out that people didn’t know..

I decided to finally make a recording of this incredibly beautiful music that just “flows like the River” in the Silver Stream, before it’s too late and it’s gone… I’ve played all over the world and wherever I play, and in whatever language people have been using, they ask me “what was that song you just played; I heard it when I was a child.” This always brings tears to my eyes, especially since I don’t read music and the music just comes….

Let me know how you are and what you’ve been doing since you called me in Paris. You were working for some big magazine or publisher, I think, in S.F. back in the mid to late ’80’s when I lived in France. I’ve been back in NC ever since 1990, until I went to Guatemala in 2006, then it’s been back and forth. It’s great. Hope you can visit sometime; it’s the perfect place to regain one’s energy, health and sanity……

It was great reading about English Richard the plumber; he was always such a good-looking guy. Haven’t talked to them in years (called his girlfriend some years back; can’t think of her name right off), but think about the old days quite often. 

🙂 smile!

Your friend, Katie

Anglo Misthos & John Vonderlin Talk NEW OSRR


Hi Angelo,

   Your mentioning of the OSR building a road along the Waddell Bluffs, thinking it would absorb landslides and leave the rail line clear, was a new set of facts for me. I found this article that makes mention of this project, but not the road’s secondary usefulness for the railroad. This is from “The San Francisco Call,” on June 16th, 1905. Enjoy. John  


car3(Image. That’s photographer Deb Wong with Barbara Senz, the too-modest woman behind Bob Senz, both longtime Coastsiders who helped started the “Dream Machine” show for a local non-profit..

 Mr. Senz has helped a lot of Coastsiders, including me, without being asked. That’s a REAL MAN. He has the right to be called not only “the Man,” but “Mr. Coastsider.” He should have shelves of REAL GOLD  awards–and so should his sweet wife, Barbara.

Photo b the great photographer Michael Wong. (I can’t help it: there really are “great” Coastsiders–come and find out.)


More Princeton Pix (Dream Machine,” including The Man, Bob Senz, please click here http://princetonbytheseamemories.com/  I am not forgetting about my old friends Chad Hooker, his artist-wife January Hooker,  and James Rudolph, and his life-partner the jeweler, Kathy,(whose work can be seen at FX on Main Street in Half Moon Bay) who all  selflessly have  given their time to make the Dream Machines a good thing for our community. (I’m not sure I like the planes flying over my house though,guys.)

Also I’ve included some ideas for adventures in Princeton, entirely up to you. The idea is to have fun and laugh and enjoy life.

The Heart of the Coastside: Thank You El Granada Post Office

Almost every post office I have been (in other places), I have found them cold, unfunny and frankly I wanted to get out. The El Granada Post Office people may have their bad days but they are almost always smiling and making jokes (and you know who I mean about “making jokes”). I honestly often leave laughing myself. After leaving the post office!

(Image: A signed sympathy card from my post office.)



The card reads: “Death cannot separate hearts that knew true love. How fortunate you were to have shared each other’s lives.

Signed by Judy, Tom, Kathy and Rowena