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News

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics


The Town Crier chronicled the first election of Los Altos City Council incumbent Jarrett Fishpaw in 2010 and documented the Los Altos candidacy of Jean Mordo, who volunteered as a longtime public servant in Los Altos Hills before moving to the flat...

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Schools

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system


Courtesy of St. Simon Parish School
St. Simon fifth-grader Matthew Cummins uses a laptop in class last week. The school’s cloud-based Schoology system boosts organization and collaboration.

Families at St. Simon Parish School in Los Altos laun...

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Community

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos main library is among the more popular branches in the county library district system, set to celebrate 100 years.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his debut with the Boston Red Sox, wages hit $5 per day, the first ste...

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Sports

Eagles eye another stellar season

Eagles eye another stellar season


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High outside hitter Carmen Annevelink, right, goes for the kill Thursday against Palo Alto, as teammates Sarah Tritschler, left, and Lulu Kishton prepare to play defense. The Eagles won the match in straight ga...

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Comment

Torok, Walter, Dave for MVLA board: Editorial

There’s really nothing major you can criticize about the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District. It offers a diverse array of effective programs for all types of students. Its instructors, with few exceptions, are outstanding.

Howe...

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Special Sections

'Funabout' Fiat

'Funabout' Fiat


Photos courtesy of Fiat
The 2014 Fiat 500e uses 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, which the engineers claim is the equivalent of 116 mpg of gas use. It has a sticker price of $33,095.

If you believe in climate change, would love to see alternat...

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Business

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground


Ted Fagenson

An East Bay app developer is testing his newest creation in downtown Los Altos.

Ted Fagenson, co-founder of Skrownge (pronounced “scrounge”), told the Town Crier that he’s beta testing his mobile gaming app this week ...

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Books

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween


Courtesy of Dee Ellmann
Jenny Hurwick self-published her picture book last month after decades of storytelling.

During her years working as a teacher and a Los Altos mom, Jenny Hurwick loved to tell stories. One tale she crafted for her son just se...

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People

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

'Gypsy' on its way out

'Gypsy' on its way out


Chris Berger/Special to the Town Crier
Alison Koch of Los Altos plays Dainty June in “Gypsy.”

This is the final weekend to catch the Sunnyvale Community Players production of “Gypsy” at the Sunnyvale Theatre. The musical is slated to close Sund...

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Spiritual Life

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Herman Lukwago educates children in Uganda.

Imagine life if your father had 25 children and you were raised in poverty in rural Uganda.

Now imagine that you and your siblings were orphaned at an early age and you ass...

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Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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The empty spaces: No Shoes, Please

When I look around my home, I see signs of my husband everywhere: photos of the family to whom he is devoted, an Acosta Family crest, prints of Italian Renaissance, French Impressionist and Picasso masterpieces. I see his vision – always pointed at the horizon – in our remodeled kitchen and bathroom. The vegetable garden, the roses, the carefully tended lawn – that’s all him, too. I even see him in our appliances, every last one purchased at discounted prices with a firm adherence to both quality and value, not sacrificing one for the other.

Simply noting the material things, you hardly see me at all. The bookshelves contain a lot of me, but my stuff accounts for just over half the items resting on them. There’s a Japanese doll standing in a far corner of the house in a spot you wouldn’t notice unless you were really prowling around. And I’ll claim the family photo display, too.

But just because you can’t see me doesn’t mean I’m not there. In fact, I’m everywhere – in all the blank, unseen spaces. I’m from the “less is more” school of thought and apply it to everything: how many flowers you put in a vase, how much clothing you pack for a trip, how many back issues of a magazine you keep in the house, how much dressing for a salad. So where you can find me in the home is in the absence of clutter and knickknacks.

I’m also in floors, which are repeatedly vac- uumed (oh, that darn dog hair!) and wiped down, because I like things clean – not just looking clean, but actually being clean. And in stark contrast to my husband, who would have trouble locating the scotch-tape, I know where everything is. But if you had to find something without my assistance, you would discover that everything is kept neat and well organized, something you’d never know by just glancing around. My imprint lies literally behind closed doors: hall closets, kitchen drawers, pantry shelves.

I believe in invisible things like energy and emotion – again, just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there. I therefore take cleanliness to the next level by burning incense or sage periodically to ensure a well-balanced energetic environment. I have no evidence that it makes any difference whatsoever, but I definitely feel better afterward. The atmosphere in my home seems more peaceful, more relaxed and somehow lighter when I’m done.

I crave emptiness: a nonexistent mess, the space along the mantel, items donated to Goodwill that my mind no longer keeps track of. I pay a lot of attention to the things you can’t see and what’s not there. That’s where my comfort and security lie.

When I walk into any room, it’s my husband’s taste and interests that grab my initial attention. It kind of reminds me of a dog marking all over the house. But that’s not a completely accurate image of our home. My husband may dominate the visual landscape, but I’m right next to him, leaving my own tracks. I’m in all the empty spaces. To find me, you have to look a little deeper.

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