Haugh About That?: Asking for help

Standing in my bedroom in 1974, my mother schooled me once again with her steps for finding the perfect job. Having heard it all before, I wanted to scream. At 22 years old, I was now a college graduate and, in my snarky opinion, no longer needed her advice.

But as I pounded the streets of San Francisco’s Financial District in my long, homemade jean skirt covered in embroidered flowers and a peasant blouse that slid down my right shoulder, I began to wonder whether perhaps her words were true. High-end law firms and such had an image to protect – and looking like a bygone hippie didn’t fit the bill.


The Villaj Idiut: Valley twirl

I don’t have any empirical evidence to bolster this observation, but it certainly feels palpable to me that there has been a subtly thunderous shift in the ethos of Silicon Valley.

Haugh About That?: This too

As I walked into my apartment, excited to spend time with Lauren and her new baby, Bowen, I was hit with the reality of her life. The little one, now 2 1/2 months old, was experiencing his first cold, thus forcing his schedule completely out of whack and turning night into day. On the couch, with eyes swollen from fatigue and tears, sat my sleep-deprived daughter. Remembering those early days with my eldest, I took her in my arms to soothe her tired moment and simply said, “Honey, I promise this will pass.”

A Piece of My Mind: Congratulations, Los Altos! More than 80 percent of you voted. Now what?

At a recent meeting, Kim Cranston of Los Altos Forward shared some numbers from the recent election. Per his research, 82.9 percent of registered voters in Los Altos participated in the election, a higher percentage than in Mountain View, Campbell, Sunnyvale or San Mateo. (Direct comparisons were only possible in cities where there were city-specific measures on the ballot.) Fantastic!

Per Cranston’s research, Los Altos has a track record of high voter participation. In the November 2016 election, the town hit 90 percent participation, and in the previous midterm election in 2014 managed 64.5 percent, outranking its neighboring communities’ participation rates in both years.

Life in the Hills: More than just books

A few weeks ago, I attended a wonderful luncheon for Narrative Magazine, an online literary magazine, organized by Los Altos resident Katie Dickson. From the opening comments on how the world of books came alive for Katie when she read “Harriet the Spy” and identified with “the intrepid, curious, young detective” to Narrative’s high school award-winner explaining how her grandmother wove stories while cooking for the family with her “gnarled hands” and Executive Director Carol Edgarian interviewing author Susan Orleans, who wrote “The Orchid Thief” and “The Library Book,” I sat on the edge of my seat.

For I have had my nose in a book from the time I could remember. Listening to Orleans describe her love affair with her local library growing up and everything it embodied for her resonated with me so strongly that I knew I had to write this column before I even read her book.

No Shoes, Please: Santa Claus comes to town

When my daughter was in nursery school, I attended meetings with other moms who, like me, were active participants in the co-op school environment. I don’t remember how the topic came up, but during one group discussion, we shared stories of family holiday traditions.

One mother who had three young sons excitedly relayed the lengths to which she and her husband went to convince her boys that Santa had indeed visited their home on Christmas Eve. They provided the usual clues, of course. A plate of cookies, freshly baked, and a glass of milk left on the mantel, which by morning became crumbs strewn about the dish and a bare puddle of milk left in the glass. But that was only the beginning. The father got up in the middle of the night and made gentle noises on the roof to suggest the arrival of animals pulling a sled. (I can’t remember whether or not he actually climbed on the roof to do it, but I don’t think he went that far.) The mother sprinkled soot around the fireplace and Christmas tree as evidence of Santa’s journey down their chimney. Someone embedded at least one hoof print in the yard to mark where a reindeer must have trod.

The Villaj Idiut: Disrespecting the flag

Virtually any time I’m driving the IdiutMobile around the Village these days, it feels like every street in the city has some form of construction – either of the road itself or a new building or a new home.

It’s a good sign of prosperity in our little bubble, to be sure, but you know what absolutely makes me want to drive rivets into my toenails and then stick my feet in a bucket of ice water? Flag men.


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The Town Crier welcomes letters to the editor on current events pertinent to Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View. Write to us at 138 Main St., Los Altos 94022, Attn: Editor, or email editor Bruce Barton at bruceb@latc.com. Because editorial space is limited, please confine letters to no more than 200 words. Include a phone number for verification purposes. Anonymous letters will not be printed.

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