Smoke signals, I and II

Twice in the last 24 hours I have posted at PAW about the government decree to ban vaping and cherry-tobacco from Palo Alto and its likely negative impact on Mac’s Smoke Shop, which I frequent for newspapers and magazines.
I think flavored tobacco at Mac’s to adults should be grandfathered in.
Leadership should work with the landlord to give Mac’s a break while they figure out what to shelve to displace the offensive-by-decree items.
Further research indicates they also sell a pretty good $2 cup of Joe that is a bargain compared to the places I usually buy from.
The title I found objectionable — see above –is Cherry Boxxx Pictures “Black Virgin Teens” but it says they are over 18 years of age and has contact info for the publisher, 2005. Seven-ninety-nine reduced from $13.99 originally. I opted instead for Living Blues Magazine with a plain black cover “50th” anniversary issue, mainly for the ad for Ruthie Foster Big Band live album (“evokes Ellington, Sinatra”) on Blue Corn Records. (There were also magazines such as Marie Claire –Megan Thee Stallion–Sports Illustrated-Deandre Hopkins– and National Geographic with more wholesome and respectable images of black people, if you excuse the digression into race).
I spoke to the owner Neil Khoury about the possibility of eliminating the porn section of his store, which is behind a beaded curtain. But there is a difference between stores deliberately changing their wares for their own reasons and their hand being forced by government over-reach, which is how Dubois rightly describes his board’s unfortunate result.
I also bought a Gatorade, due to the heat. Earlier today, I had bought The Times, The Chron and the Merc. Earlier (trigger warning: I say “fuck” and I make a joke, based on Bertrand Russell’s work or Marshall McLuhan, about the inconsistency of “virginity” and “promiscuity”) With new vaping ban, Palo Alto expects smoke shops to shutter Council members vote down proposal to exclude adult-only shops The Khoury’s published an 80-word broadside with their view on this story and a call to action. They are partly right in that unlike the other businesses impacted, they are a marketplace of ideas. I buy roughly 10 newspapers there per week, easily $1,000 per year on that, magazines, plus pork rinds, and juice, the rare Nabisco product. I bought Take Five bars with two different packagings, intending to write about appropriation. The location is great, they can survive the blow. They could do more with their logo — they sell t-shirts but of a weak design. I’ve opined here hundreds of times plus posted 2,600 articles to my own blog, (which itself and in its name protested installing fake grass at the Page Mill soccer fields, but also covers local news and jazz music, for ten years). Maybe Mac’s Smoke Shop could publish “Smoke Signals” that covers this dispute and other pro-retail, unique to Palo Alto issues. Maybe I’d pay them to handle an exclusive weekly broadside based on “Plastic Alto”. I’d ditch a lot of the bongs and pipes, piled embarrasingly high. Likewise “Black Teen Virgins Who Like to Get Fucked” — this paper won’t even print the title. (Note: so far, 23 hours, it stands) Maybe the successor beneficiary landlords would give them a break. But if Neil and Lori Khoury can step to the step of the true spirit of Palo Alto, they can not only persevere but prevail. The council voted: Tom Dubois, Liz Kniss, Adrian Fine –no (3) The council voted: Eric Filseth, Greg Tanaka, Lydia Kuo, Alison Cormack — yes (4) I hope besides engaging in the government or self-governance process — leadership interacting with citizenry, being both representative and responsive — customers of Mac’s who read newspapers read magazines, drink coffee, eat snacks, eat ice cream or smoke tobacco — shop at the store and reach out to Neil and Lori Khoury with your words of support and ideas. Mark Weiss Plastic Alto blog resident, Downtown North

About markweiss86

Mark Weiss, founder of Plastic Alto blog, is a concert promoter and artist manager in Palo Alto, as Earthwise Productions, with background as journalist, advertising copywriter, book store returns desk, college radio producer, city council and commissions candidate, high school basketball player, and blogger; he also sang in local choir, fronts an Allen Ginsberg tribute Beat Hotel Rm 32 Reads 'Howl' and owns a couple musical instruments he cannot play
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