Nothing ‘shifty’ about this bike business or a pancake breakfast

Mark Derry

Seems like things are improving economically, but it’s a slow boil recovery. Have always felt like the psychological aspect to recovery – or slide – is critically important. It’s almost as if you can “feel” whether the economy is moving. The numbers don’t lie, but they don’t tell the whole truth either. So, as Miss Jenny and I struggle to get the two daughters through college and the nation sputters to leave the Great Recession behind, I’m chagrined at the plethora of state, county and local tax measures dripping ink all over the upcoming ballot. There have been some reforms for public agencies in pension, benefit and pay structures. But honestly, it’s not nearly enough – not nearly enough to justify supporting all the tax measures on the ballot. One of our Community Pulse members answered a question about supporting the Santa Clara Valley Water District’s tax proposal  with this: “No. On principle, voting no on all tax measures until agencies, counties, Sacramento get their wasteful spending practices in order.” That’s on the money, and it seems to me that until the clear majority of voters adopt that principle – despite general support for schools, dam re-building, public safety or whatever the purpose – serious and sustainable reform will not happen.
Happily happens that the San Francisco Giants are the 2012 Western Division Champs. So, when Dodger fan, buddy and de facto Mayor of Gilroy, Rich Perez, asked me if I wanted a Dodger souvenir from his visit to LA  in a few days when the Giants face the Dodgers to end the regular season, I got to reply: “Sure, a picture of the Giants on the field so I can identify the non-starters who are playing while the stars from NATIONAL LEAGUE 2012 WESTERN DIVISION CHAMPION GIANTS rest.”
Had a couple of bicycles resting on flat tires in the garage. Fall is a nice time to ride, but it’s such a pain to haul them out and get them fixed. But, wait, there’s “Shifty” to the rescue. He comes out in his mobile truck van with all the right stuff to fix up your two-wheeler in a jiffy and get you back in the saddle pumping those muscles. All this for a reasonable price from a nice guy who knows what he’s doing. It’s 408-891-9916 and you can safely ask him how he got the name “Shifty.”
Nothing shifty about this idea: Adam Sanchez and Ann Zyburra, co-owners of Gilroy’s fine Milias Restaurant, have hired a local bus service to pick up and drop off patrons on Wednesday nights from Eagle Ridge. Go ahead, have an extra cocktail with dinner and don’t worry about the drive home. California Passport, owned by Ana Lelescu (408-659-0050), is the carrier. Now that’s an idea that makes so much sense that it just might catch fire here and spread to Morgan Hill. Party buses on the hour – and what a way to solve some of the winery parking issues, too? $2 for a ride home’s reasonable.
Thank you, BTW, to former Notre Dame receiver Golden Tate for the effort to claim the catch on the last play of the Green Bay-Seattle NFL game Monday. His effort magically combined with an unreal botch by the replacement refs to lay waste to an ongoing travesty and get the real refs back on the field. Hail Mary indeed …
Hail to Gilroy’s new interim fire chief. Had to chuckle when the press release came out and didn’t say a word about the former interim chief who got fired for “buying up” booze for a 20-year-old male working undercover in Santa Cruz. So, the new chief with the ironic initials of AA given his predecessor, is Alan Anderson. Welcome and how about a Gilroy Firefighters Annual Pancake Breakfast at the Sunrise Fire Station with all the proceeds going to the new YMCA programs coming to Gilroy?
We interrupt this column to break the news that daughter Mariah has just made the 7s women’s rugby squad at Oregon State University. Only 7 on the wide-open field make it a much more athletically demanding game and Mariah worked her tail off this summer. This is a good phrase, parents: “Luck is when opportunity meets preparation.” Atascadero High football coaching legend Larry Welsh drilled it into his players many years ago and it stuck with me as a good teaching tool. Way to go Mariah – and Go Beavs!

Reach Editor Mark Derry at [email protected]