Gilkyson and Gerber Get New Fan

When I heard that KZFR was sponsoring a concert at the Chico Women’s Club last Friday night, featuring Eliza Gilkyson along with Nina Gerber, I’d never heard Eliza Gilkyson’s music before.  But I got interested when I learned that she played acoustic folk music and was nominated for a Grammy Award.  And when a friend told me that Nina Gerber was going to accompany Eliza on guitar and that she had played with Kate Wolf’s band I thought, “I’m going!”

Being a photographer, I took photos of the two women, Eliza Gilkyson in color, thereby capturing something of the warmth of her voice and lyrics, and Nina Gerber in black and white because I thought the neutral colors would better show the intensity of her concentration on the guitar – the combination resulting in a sound that can never be adequately duplicated.

The song I liked best was Fast Freight by Eliza’s father, singer and songwriter, Terry Gilkyson. Perhaps I gravitate toward train sounds because I grew up adjacent to a San Fernando Valley railroad track or because of the long railroad journeys to Denver for summer vacations.  Now, in Chico, I hear the distant sound of a late-night train as it passes through town telling me, “If you go you can’t come back.”

Nina Gerber and Eliza Gilkyson

Nina Gerber (left) and Eliza Gilkyson

 

Eliza Gilkyson

Eliza Gilkyson

 

_MG_4455Eliza

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_MG_4474Eliza

Nina Gerber

Nina Gerber

_MG_4457Nina

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Nina playing “bottle neck” slide.

 

_MG_4456Nina

 

Nina and her dot, Tootsie.

Nina and her dog, Tootsie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

People Cited, Trees Cut

Once again, the Save Oroville Trees people gathered in the early morning darkness in front of the Oroville Cemetery. It was a last effort to save their Heritage Trees. To make sure law, order, and safety prevailed, the “authorities” called for the following city forces to be present: Oroville police, Oroville fire dept. and paramedics.  PG&E hired some rent-a-cops, traffic control guys, a fence crew and, of course, a large crew of out of town tree cutters.  Many PG&E officials were on hand.

Eleven people were handcuffed, cited and released. One woman, however, chose to go back into the fenced-off area and lay down under one of the trees. She was arrested and taken to the county jail.

By the time this blogger went home at 5:00PM, nine trees still stood – but with all their upper limbs lopped off.  You could hardly call them trees anymore, let alone Heritage Trees.

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Woman chains herself to a tree.

Woman chains herself to a tree.

Dave climbs up into a tree again.

Dave climbs up into a tree again.

People start getting cited.

People start getting cited and removed from fenced area around the trees.

Caroline gets cited and escorted out of fenced area around the trees.

Elderly gentleman with cane gets cited.

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Handicapped man cited and removed.

Handicapped man is cited and removed.

A woman cries before being cited and removed.

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A mother is handcuffed and removed along with her daughter.

A mother is handcuffed and removed along with her son.

Al talks to his wife while from up in one of the trees.

Al talks to his wife from up in one of the trees.

Oroville City Administrator, Randy Murphy, comes down and surveys the standoff between people and PG&E.

Oroville City Administrator, Randy Murphy, comes down to check out the standoff between people and PG&E.

Bill goes limp and is carried out of fenced area.

Bill goes limp and is carried out of fenced area.

Woman returns to fenced-off area and is arrested.

Woman returns to fenced-off area and is arrested.

PG&E workers huddle.

PG&E workers huddle.

The name of out of town tree crew.

The name of out of town tree crew.

PG&E don't waste time - 3 trees get cut at the same time.

PG&E didn’t waste time – 3 trees get cut at the same time.

One person said the cracking of the limbs "sounded like breaking bones."

One person said the cracking of the limbs “sounded like bones breaking.”

_MG_4312BigTreeBodiesChainsawed

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Heritage Tree gone forever.

Heritage Tree,  gone forever.

 

 

 

 

 

How Do We Measure What We’ve Lost?

Some losses are painfully easy to measure – getting laid off from one’s job, the death of a loved one, or the decline of mental and physical capacities as we grow older.

But how do we measure the incremental, bit-by-bit loss of the natural world? By the number of glasses of polluted water no longer fit to drink? By the number of acres of open space and prime farmland paved over for residential development and shopping malls? By the number of animal and plant species that have disappeared from the face of the Earth forever? Or do we measure the number of corporations that lied to us when they promised not to harm the environment? Or by some city council members who voted to sell off their cities’ natural resources? Or by the carbon released back into the atmosphere when a 4ft diameter tree is cut down?

And how do we measure the loss of 240 trees lining the streets of Oroville? As for me, I measure such loss by the lengths to which a small band of people will go to save even a single tree, and by the tears cried by an older gentlemen back home, in the kitchen, telling his wife about the 4 trees lining the Oroville Cemetery that he saw PG&E cut down.

[Below is the story, in photos, of the Oroville trees and their human protectors.]

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Jan. 6,  I travel to Oroville to check out the trees.

 

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Jan 26

 

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Jan. 6,  I measure the 4 foot diameter tree cut down by PG&E before people can organize.

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Jan 6

 

King Industries' 300 year old Valley Oak - in the path of PG&E too.

Jan 6   King Industries’ 300 year old Valley Oak – down the road from the cemetery trees, in the path of PG&E too.

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Jan. 6    King Industries Valley Oak, private property

Jan. 12th, Save Our Trees goes to court with their attorney, Richard Harriman.PG&E wins Temporary Restraining Order against the people.

Jan. 12th  Save Our Trees (SOT) people go to court with their attorney, Richard Harriman.  PG&E wins Temporary Restraining Order against the people. SOT will eventually go to court 2 more times.

5:00AM,

Jan.26th, 5:00A.M.   I get a call from the people. PG&E arrive to cut the trees down.

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Jan 26th

PG&E puts up fence around the trees and the people guarding the trees.

Jan. 26   PG&E puts up fence around the trees and the people guarding the trees.

The people and the trees appeared to be imprisoned.

Jan. 26    The people and the trees appeared to be imprisoned.

A mournful sound.

Jan. 26   A mournful sound.

In the early morning darkness the people gathered for pep talks.

 Jan 26   In the early morning cold and darkness the people gathered to encourage each other.

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Jan 26

 

Some of the Save Oroville Trees people try and stay warm.

Jan. 26  Save Oroville Trees people try to stay warm.

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Jan. 26

 

Dave goes up into the tree.

Jan. 26  Dave goes up into the tree.

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Jan 26

 

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Jan. 26

 

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Jan 26

 

The people discuss risking arrest with the police.

Jan 26  The people discuss risking arrest with the police.

Stand-off between PG&E and the people.

Jan 26  Stand-off between PG&E and the people.

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Jan. 26, late afternoon, when only a few people are still at the site, PG&E cut down 4 of the trees.

 

Al Cartwright jumps the fence. PG&E calls the police and Al is handcuffed, cited and released.

Jan 26, late afternoon.  Al Cartwright jumps the fence to try and save the rest of the trees. PG&E calls the police and Al is handcuffed, cited and released. Nine trees remain.

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Jan 27.   After PG&E cuts down 4 of the 13 heritage trees the day before the people set up camp all night to protect the remaining 9 trees.

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Jan 27

Allen Young and Bill Bynum, part of the core members of SOT.

Allen Young and Bill Bynum, part of the core members of SOT.

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Jan. 27

Epilog:  As of 1/30/15, the last 9 trees are still standing and the people are still standing in front of them. However, I got word PG&E will return on Monday, Feb. 2, 6:00a.m. to cut them down. Please show up if you can to stand in solidarity with the trees and the people.

Chico and Paradise people beware!  PG&E has plans to cut down trees in your towns too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Felize Navidad!

Chico Foothills, winter 2011

Chico Foothills, winter 2011

Happy Holidays to friends, family and the World.  Here are the words to John Lennon’s and Yoko Ono’s song “Happy Christmas (War is Over)” for you:

“So, this is Christmas
And what have you done?
Another year over
And a new one just begun

And so this is Christmas
I hope you have fun
The near and the dear one
The old and the young

A very merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Lets hope it’s a good one
Without any fear

And so this is Christmas
For weak and for strong
For rich and the poor ones
The road is so long

And so happy Christmas
For black and for white
For yellow and red ones
Let’s stop all the fight

A very merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Let’s hope it’s a good one
Without any fear

And so this is Christmas
And what have we done
Another year over
And a new one just begun

And so happy Christmas
We hope you have fun
The near and the dear one
The old and the young

A very merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Let’s hope it’s a good one
Without any fear

War is over
If you want it
War is over
Now”