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LETTERS: December 15th Issue

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Re.: Giving Tuesday

Wow! We just cannot thank you enough for hosting the Taste and Give event on Giving Tuesday. That brainchild was just another wonderful way that RVM touches the southern Oregon community. Since it was a new event we had no idea what to expect but RVM did not disappoint! From the moment we walked through the door and set up our display, it was apparent that this event was going to be something special. Everyone was so warm and friendly that even the new event quirks were incorporated with a joyful spirit. The RVM crew truly is something special not only because of their welcoming ways but to put so much energy into an event that was truly about giving was heart warming. As a non-profit it was refreshing to be part of something that was encouraging relational generosity. There is something so unique and satisfying about getting together with a large group of people in a small space and sharing what keeps us inspired every day. I met new supporters and others who already had a favorite cause or two, but both were fun and friendly. We were blessed to share a table with Sara, RVM editor and that was really icing on the cake for the time well spent. Thank you for inviting us. We look forward to more Taste and Gives! (PS – Don’t be shy about planning one for Grants Pass. I know many who would love to be a part of such a fun, inspiring event.)

Inspiring Hope, Empowering You

Jo Lisa BlossomDevelopment DirectorPregnancy Care Center of Grants Pass

Re.: Stinky Weed

I think we were all so much more open to it until it became legal and we realized how stinky it made our neighborhoods. Honesty, people just don’t want to have to smell it. I hate that I can’t hang out in my own backyard without smelling my neighbor’s pot everyday.

– Melissa

Re.: Sarcastic Weed

Dear Southern Oregon Pot Growers: Thanks for coming out from the shadows. No longer must you hide behind barns or 12 foot fences in narrow valleys in the middle of nowhere. Now we can all see you. Without using Google Earth.

What do you plan to do with all of that reefer? Sure, there are at least a half-dozen dispensaries lining the local highway in as many miles. But is local demand in our little valley really that strong? Is everybody high, all the time? Really, I want to know, is all that weed you’re growing going into medical or recreational products that are sold and consumed here in Oregon? None of it makes it’s way over the California border that lies an easy few miles to the south? Is it all going up to Portland and Eugene? None of it finds it’s way back east? I honestly don’t know… but I’d love to hear where it goes.

How do you protect those valuable plants of yours? I notice that many of the “fences” around your weed patches are not much more than a few thin posts and some translucent plastic mulch. That’s not much of a barrier to protect such a substantial investment. Maybe enough neighbors are growing their own these days that you need not worry about the many thousands of dollars of drugs growing in your garden?

How has the banking been going? Do you need banks? Or do you just pay your labor under the table? Where do you keep all of that cash? How do you protect it? Nice car by the way.

I suppose you could invest your cash in real estate. My oh my, land and home prices around here are high! Rent too! It’s almost like you have to grow pot to be able to afford anything!  Just make sure you grow some food too… there won’t be too many market farmers around much longer.

How’s labor looking? I mean I know how they look… kinda hard to miss. It sure does get crowded around here come October. I guess they’re reliable right? Good, hard-working, God-fearing folks? The kind who just keep to themselves and quietly make their contributions to the community, maybe even settle here to raise up a family. The kind who pay their taxes.  Real salt of the earth types.

How do your folks feel about the fact that you’re out here, growing weed for a living? How about your kids? They’re smart, beautiful kids. Surely they learn about the importance of agriculture at their Waldorf school. Maybe they’ll start smoking weed in 5th grade. That’s old enough right? Shouldn’t be hard to get it. Hope it doesn’t affect their ambition or grades… pot doesn’t really do that though, does it? What do you think a good age to start smoking is?

Look, I’m sure your good folks. You want to do right by the community. Heck, there are lots of people in the drug industry around here, all the coffee houses, all the vineyards and wineries. These are just the questions I (and no doubt others) have. It would do you well to address them, instead of slipping back into the shadows.

–Daniel MacSweeney



Hey Messenger: I am a 17-year-old boy and a junior in High School. I have started to hear talk about colleges and applying for them. I know what I want to major in (computer science). I am a B to B+ student and I want to go to a good college but I’m not sure where. What I am asking is, how did you choose where to go? I’m not sure whether I want to be close to home or far away, and how I should go about researching things and making myself available and a good candidate to be accepted? Would be helpful if you could tell me how I should be going about college; that would be cool, thanks.


Dear C.R.: I would recommend applying to seven to 10 colleges if you do not already feel committed to any one thing in particular. This way, there is room for a few denials and a few choices. Typically, one would want to do this around October of the senior year, so you have some time. In February, one may want to visit a few of the campuses and have meet and greets with counselors and deans. I would also recommend getting your grades up as much as you can, joining clubs, and engaging in community or charity volunteer work. Today’s acceptance committees want to know that students also have a stake in things like positive social change. They want to know that the education they provide you will contribute to the betterment of society. Personally, I want this too, as we are all sort of depending on you guys to fix the mess made by the Baby Boomers, Generation X, and whatever my weird Oregon Trail generation is.

I chose my college based on location. I wanted to get out of my geographic area and move to the Pacific Northwest. I was tired of the sun burning my eyeballs every day, and I wanted to see some damn trees. You may have similar “grass is greener” thoughts of your own, and they are not necessarily unhealthy to entertain at this early stage of your life. I would suggest applying for schools close to home and far away, just in case.

In terms of resources, the website college-insight.org is a good place to start. They allow users to build their own comparison tables, so that you can better visualize and balance the pros and cons of each school. US News is known for their “Best Colleges” lists that come out every year. The website allows you to search lists in a variety of topics such as best value schools, specific programs, and even “best schools for B students,” just in case you don’t get those grades up!

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