Craig Coffin


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Craig Coffin - 1966Craig Coffin - 2007
1966 Yearbook photo2007 Photo


One cool thing that's happened recently was my second son's graduation from PGHS, Friday. The Class of 007 is really cool. Sharp. Fun. Good, Good people. The front page picture and article in The Herald Saturday was about Ellen, the girl with Downs syndrome who made it all the way through the PG school system, and gave a beautiful speech at the ceremony. Positivity overcoming adversity. Her classmates gave her a sustained standing ovation. My son started at MPC Monday (certainly not his first classes there).

My other son is in the Class of 2001. He's since graduated from UCLA's honors program in three years, traveled around South America twice, Saipan (where he taught high school), the Philippines, Indonesia and Southeast Asia. Right now, he's in Tokyo, teaching English and hanging out with his wonderful Japanese girlfriend, who he met in Vietnam. How 'bout that? Nationals of two former occupiers. Make love, not war.

I've been back in PG since '76, married to Elvira since '79. She's a Chinese/Mexican Mexican, who I met while shopping for opals and agates in Mexico in '77. I've been thoroughly enjoying a big, and constantly growing, fantastic family in my other country. (Thanks, Mrs. Shepard, for the second language.)

I'm not doing politics, now. The annoying Teen-Age Republican ended up registering as such only for the sake of voting for Timothy Leary in that party's gubernatorial primary against Ray-Gun. After four years at USC, I dropped out the month before graduation, during the 1970 strike protesting Tricky Dick's Cambodia incursion. After a couple a years underground, I returned, at the behest of a federal judge, to finish my degree in Philosophy and start graduate work, focusing on International Relations. I was inactive Peace and Freedom, until Jackson's '88 campaign. After a national convention, almost four years on the state Central Committee, and as secretary of the county CC, I'd had more than enough of that ego-maniacal opportunist and what I've come to refer to as "the Democrat branch of the Republicrat machine", so I helped found the Green Party in the county, the state, and the US. I ran for State Senate and Congress.

Then I dropped out, to concentrate on my novel, "Reflections of a Born-Again Pagan Radical" (Available in Monterey Peninsula book stores and all over the internet, including Amazon. The best place to browse it is at iUniverse.. The two-page opening chapter and much of the second are about PG, which is an ideal, throughout. The book's gotten lotsa praise for its effectiveness at bringing the '60's to life, though it's intended to be much more than a mere nostalgia piece.

I haven't gotten into pushing it, 'cause right after I finished it, I got cancer. They slit my throat and radiated me. No sign of recurrence for almost two years, now. They'll officially pronounce me cured, if it stays that way for five years.

Whoa! Enough, for now. The student'll be wanting his study back, soon. - Enjoy every moment... Your friend, Craig. (BTW, The Herald's been making a big deal about the 40th anniversary of Monterey Pop (June 16-18) and the Summer of Love, which it kicked off. D.A.Pennebaker'll be at the State Theater Saturday, to kick off the showing of his documentary about the big event. It'll be there through the 21st. Then at the end of next month, there's gonna be a 40th anniversary festival at the fairgrounds.)

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