Monthly Archives: August 2012
In the upcoming November election, voters in Washington will be voting on Initiative 502. If passed, it would allow licensed distributors to sell pot. Backers of 502 say its passage will raise $ 2 million in tax revenue over the next five years. The stated “intent” of the measure promises to take “marijuana out of the hands of illegal drug organizations and brings it under a tightly regulated, state-licensed system similar to that for controlling hard …More
Thousands Now Live With West Nile Virus Infection. Here, 2 Share Their Stories
Aug. 31, 2012 — This year, more than 1,500 people in the U.S. have been diagnosed with West Nile virus infection and several have died.
Transmitted by the bite of a mosquito, the infection isn’t equal opportunity.
Some infected people don’t notice any symptoms. Others have a milder form of the disease, known as West Nile fever. About 1 in 150 people infected develop severe complications, including infections of the brain (encephalitis) or spinal cord and connecting nerves (meningitis) or paralysis.
Rob Wagner Jr., 52, is a construction worker in Riverside County, Calif., near Los Angeles. He learned he had West Nile virus earlier this month.
Don R. Read, MD, is a Dallas surgeon who became infected in 2005 at age 63. He says he is still coming back from the complications, including paralysis.
Rob Wagner Jr.
Rob Wagner Jr., is a big guy who has worked construction most of his life. Most recently, he has been working as a glass glazer in Southern California.
In early August, he was hanging out at a friend’s house in the city of Riverside, spending a lot of time in the backyard.
A lifelong mosquito magnet, he remembers being bitten but not thinking much about it. “I was getting bitten every night,” he says.
One morning soon after, he woke up with a burning fever. “I was sweating like crazy,” he says. The day before, he remembers feeling like he was coming down with something.
He was lagging at work. “I have to deal with measurements, stuff like that,” Wagner says. “I was really slow, feeling incompetent in my measurements.”
He had an excruciating headache. He says he’s had those before, and they were linked with his high blood pressure. “It was like flu symptoms,” he says.
“I had a friend take me to the emergency room.” They told him the fever was 105 degrees.
“They started doing tests, taking blood. They did CT scans and MRI.” He had two painful spinal taps, a typical test to check for meningitis, which doctors suspected.
Doctors admitted him to the hospital. They decided the diagnosis was bacterial meningitis and started him on antibiotics.
The pain was so bad the doctors put him on morphine.
The week he spent in the hospital was a nightmare, his sister, Pamela Vest, says. “A whole week, we couldn’t even talk to him because he was so out of it.”
“One morning he woke up crying,” she says, “saying, ‘What is wrong with me?’ ‘What is it?’”
When he improved some, he was released.
Then came the call from the Riverside County Department of Health. “It wasn’t bacterial meningitis, it was West Nile virus,” he says.
“I didn’t know that much about it,” he says. “I was still kind of out of it.”
Associated Press | Aug 31, 2012 | Comments 0
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — The actor who played David Starsky in the 1970s police drama “Starsky & Hutch” is fighting a drug charge in Kentucky for what he says is medical marijuana from California.
The Daily News ( ) in Bowling Green reports an attorney entered a not guilty plea on Thursday on behalf of 69-year-old Paul Michael Glaser of Venice, Calif.
Bowling Green police charged Glaser with possession of marijuana and a pipe on May 10, hours after he read an excerpt of his young adult novel, “Chrystallia and the Source of Light,” to students at a middle school.
According to a police citation, Glaser said he had medical marijuana prescribed to him in California.
He was arrested after an anonymous call to police that a man was smoking marijuana in a hotel.
Animation Renaissance man Tom Sito has a stock line he uses whenever he gives talks: he wonders what happened to the years in between, “Hey, kid, sharpen these pencils for me,” and, “You worked with Shamus Culhane?” In my own way I can relate, though it’s even harder for me to think of someone like Genndy Tartakovsky, director (perhaps rescuer) of the upcoming film Hotel Transylvania, as an industry veteran. It seems like only last year that he was one of the hot rising stars of Cartoon Network’s What a Cartoon! program.
I’ve spoken with Genndy several times over the years, but in 2001—when his series Samurai Jack premiered on CN—I had the chance to chat with him about the road he took from Russia, where he was born, through Chicago, where he grew up, and onto L.A. He referred to the journey as one that involved more than luck or determination, or even talent. “It was like destiny and fate came to me,” he said:
“Growing up in Chicago, there really was no animation industry, nothing like there is in Los Angeles. I was a senior in high school and was still getting up Saturday mornings and watching cartoons, even if I had a hangover, or something. It was really important to me. Since in Chicago there was no industry, I just decided I’d do my own personal films, and do the film festival circuit, but meanwhile I’d have a normal job, so I went to Columbia College in Chicago for advertising art. They had alphabetical registration, and because my last name begins with T, all the classes I really wanted were closed. But there was one animation class that was open as an elective. Once I got in the class, a whole new world opened up. I realized there was this school, CalArts, and there was this industry, and I thought maybe I could actually break in. Right away, I switched my major to film.”
Then, as Genndy told it, “fate” intervened:
“My older brother Alex went to University of Illinois at Champaign and he had a roommate that liked animation, but he also didn’t know you could get a job. But he heard Alex’s brother was studying animation, so he went to Columbia. That was Rob Renzetti. He ended up in the same life drawing class that I was in, and I said, ‘Hey, you’re my brother’s roommate,’ and he went, ‘Yeah, and your Alex’s younger brother.’ So Rob told me about CalArts, and I told him I’d heard about that school, but thought it was impossible to get in. But he brought me this catalogue, and it had amazing drawings, and this faculty of famous people. Because of Rob, I found out about CalArts. We both submitted our portfolios and we got in, and that’s how we moved to California.”
After graduation, fellow CalArts student Craig McCracken recommended Genndy and Rob for jobs on 2 Stupid Dogs. It was the beginning of a powerful creative troika at CN, and the rest, as they say, is…destiny?
Watchdog Group Barks About Toons’ Adult Content
‘Adventure Time’ First Season DVD Arrives in July
Pitch Party 2012: First Batch of Judges Announced!
L.A. Film Festival Spotlights Women in Animation
Sony, CalArts Educational Program Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary