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Monitor Notes: Mushrooms, Joe Matthews, Reproductive Rights, Youth Art


Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.


In Case You Missed It:
Pleasures and Perils of Mushrooming in the Bay Area

Debbie Viess mushroom hunting at Mt. Shasta. Credit David Rust

Debbie Viess is dreaming of morels, delicate wild mushrooms that pop up as the cool of winter yields to the warmth of spring. Her favorite recipe for morels when they’re tiny and tender is with fresh spring peas in cream sauce over pasta. “They’re delicious,” she says.

If you don’t know what you’re doing, however, this meal could also be dangerous. Mushrooms are notoriously difficult to identify and some are poisonous. For instance, novices can easily mistake false morels (Gyromitra esculenta) for true morels. “The look-alike Gyromitra species can be seriously toxic,” cautions the morel page of the Bay Area Mycological Society, which Viess co-founded with David Rust, her husband and fellow mushroom enthusiast.
Read more from Robin Meadows at the Bay Area Monitor.



News and Events from Around the Bay


Lunch with the League
Thursday May 19th, 11:30am

Columnist Joe Matthews will be giving a talk on “Why California Isn’t a Democracy,” next Thursday. Mathews’ weekly column appears in 30+ newspapers throughout California, including the Mercury News and San Francisco Chronicle. An article of his published earlier this year looked at representation in government:

“In the city of Los Angeles, population four million-plus, there are just 15 city councilmembers. That means each councilmember represents 270,000 people, the highest such ratio in the country… Our state Senate districts, with nearly one million people each, and our Assembly districts, with 500,000 Californians each, are the largest in the country.”

Register for the Lunch with the League talk here.


Protect Reproductive Rights
Saturday May 14th

Join Planned Parenthood and the League of Women Voters in a national call to action to protect reproductive rights tomorrow. From the President of the League of Women Voters of the United States, Deborah Turner:

“I want to acknowledge the pain and fear that this news causes for so many. This very real threat to our reproductive rights puts people in danger, fuels already heightened anxiety, and looms as a dangerous degradation of personal civil liberties.”

Marches are planned in both Oakland and San Francisco. Read Turner’s statement here, and a statement from LWV Oakland President Viola Gonzalez here.


Power of Nature Youth Art Exhibit

“In celebration of Earth Month, Greenbelt Alliance and the Bay Area Youth Climate Summit hosted our first-ever Power of Nature Youth Art Contest, which called on high school students from around the San Francisco Bay Area to showcase nature-based solutions to climate change.”

Top prizes include Naomi Chen’s “Up,” which emphasizes the carbon capture potential of natural ocean upwelling, Kyan Shilpak’s “Below the Surface,” highlighting the relationship between a tree and its roots, and Sophie Eilersen’s “Replenish our Forests,” a painting that advocates for the replenishing of forests. See the winning pieces (not pictured), plus the rest of the exhibit here.




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