Everyone — please bring comfortable shoes

To everyone who is coming along on the Nature Walk this Saturday in Santa Cruz:(organized under the auspices of Bookshop Santa Cruz.) First of all, greetings to all of you. Looking forward to meeting you in person (and I’ve already met a few of you on my past travels, so hello again.) I wanted to let you know that we are in for one medium-grade undulating hill early on in the walk and one short but somewhat steeper hill. Overall, I would call this walk moderate, with quite a few easy sections (flat or downhill). Just bring comfortable walking shoes or boots with good traction for that steeper hill because it has a bit of loose gravel on it. Here is how this will work: we will talk about ‘voice,’ the narrator and the places where memoir and nature writing intersect. We will talk a bit about the lovely greenbelt…

Canada Rocks, updated

I just want to take this opportunity to thank the entire country of Canada. A couple of days ago, I received two inspiring and uplifting messages from the first-ever Canadian to write into my blog. Ever! In light of these recent messages, I want to take this moment to emphasize that Cactuseaters.blogspot is a Canada-friendly zone and let you know that I, too, was offended by the recent Billy Bob Thornton comments. It helps to remember that Billy Bob has also said some peculiar things about the Statue of Liberty and antique shops, among other things. If I ever have the chance to go on a book tour throughout Canada, I promise to never compare your fans to Thanksgiving foodstuffs. By the way, I am soliciting contributions to “stuff you probably don’t know about Canada.” Feel free to send in at any time, and I’ll turn it, eventually, into a…

Redwood hike/talk in Santa Cruz

Thanks so much to everyone who signed up for the Bookshop Santa Cruz hike/talk in the woods; looking forward to seeing you out in the redwoods on Saturday. I also want to thank readers so much for your very moving messages about testimonials about David; I am getting so many great stories and messages about him, and I will add them continuously to this blog as they come in. Also, make sure to check out my brother Phil’s blog, Pawprints, listed below. http://cactuseaters.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default

Your resolution for the month: Adopt a “shelter” animal

I’m getting quite a few emails from people asking me if “Zook” had any favorite charity, and if they can donate to it in his name. I still need to pin down the details with his family — but in the meantime, I can safely say that he was a true champion of animal adoption; his household was filled with creatures (two dogs, two cats) and every one of those animals is either a stray or a shelter animal. He took great care of the animals, and hated to leave them in kennels for any length of time when he was away. So … one great way to honor David is to give a good home to a dog or cat that you find in a shelter. In my case, I eliminated the middleman and just adopted a cat right off the street some years back when I was living…

Remembering Zooknoone in Carson City

Thank you to everyone who paid tribute to my brother David, alias “Zooknoone,” in Carson City on Thursday and Friday (and also today — a drumming circle/life celebration has been scheduled in town.)”Zook,” my big brother, a musician, writer, and field adjuster by trade, passed away on March 27 after emergency open-heart surgery. All of us miss him terribly. (please see remembrances below, and thank you so much for your kind words about my brother. I will continue to update this and file your messages about him as they come in.) My brother Phil — who is a very gifted writer — read a tribute, I shared a few words of my own, and we spent time with UCSD pals of Zooknoone, including John and Youndy. My mother and father made the trip out from southern California. A storm blew up over the Sierra Nevada almost immediately after the gathering….


Looking forward to remembering with all of Zook’s family and friends in Carson City tomorrow. I’m bringing a DVD of a great Zook performance of a Randy Newman song from his rock opera, “Faust,’ along with a few words about him. Feel free to pitch in by email if there are any anecdotes you want me to include (but send in as soon as you see this email. I’m taking off for Nevada really soon.)By the way, I want to extend a heartfelt thanks to everyone in the Cactus community and your kind words of support. http://cactuseaters.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default