Sunday, June 26, 2011

#177 / Contract Renewal Time

The photo is of the Cosmic Lady. It's a photograph that is said to date from 1980, when the Cosmic Lady was in San Francisco. You can click the image to get the website reference.

I met the Cosmic Lady before 1980. I think, in fact, I knew her during the early or mid-1970's, when I was first getting involved in community issues in Santa Cruz. The Cosmic Lady hung out near the Cooper House on the Pacific Garden Mall, providing a colorful commentary and prophetic witness which fit well with the spirit of the community.

I was thinking of the Cosmic Lady yesterday, because one of her often repeated phrases was running through my head: "It's contract renewal time."

In many ways, a call to create a new human reality is directly tied to what the Cosmic Lady called "contract renewal time." Nothing that we create will last forever, and it's just about time to turn the page, and to initiate a new set of relationships and a whole "new order" in the world.

On a whim, I typed "Cosmic Lady" into my favorite search engine, and found not only her picture, but learned that a Santa Cruz author, Marshall Motz, has written a book about the Cosmic Lady.

The title of Motz' book is The Cosmic Lady Was Right. You can read an excerpt by clicking the title that I have linked to Motz' website, or you can "see inside" the book on Amazon. Locally, you can purchase the book from Bookshop Santa Cruz.

While I'm waiting to read the whole book, I'll keep thinking. Maybe the Cosmic Lady was right. Maybe it really is "contract renewal time."


  1. The Lady was far more prescient than any of us thought, back there in 1974, boogying at the Cooper House. Since then, we've had our share of earthquakes, both personal and political. And the ground is still rumbling. Gary, your blog continues in her spirit. Thanks. Where is she, now that we need her?

  2. Maybe she would have said: "all resources, always available." I'd like to believe that's true. Thanks again for such a nice history of a Santa Cruz "moment." Besides Cosmic Lady, your description of the Sash Mill Theatre brought me right back!

  3. I've always been a fan of yours, Gary, all the way back to Marilyn Liddicoat. I followed from afar, and rooted for you. Your slant on the "contract renewal time" expression is more socially oriented than is, perhaps, mine in my book, but on the other hand, that perspective is far from absent in the pages of Cosmic Lady. You might find that I trace what seems to me to be the decline of liberalism in our land, from FDR to Obama, and lament the drift to the far right we've seen in that interval. Another line of hers that sticks in my mind---and is in fact a major theme throughout my work---is the stuff about the earth as the "planetary lunatic training asylum." What's to be done about that one? Every day I'm more convinced she was right about this. Nuts are everywhere, a huge problem. I like your idea of the New Order for the world---to me, this is what liberalism or progressivism is all about. Yet even this phrase has become a shibboleth for the right-wing conspiracy nuts who see it as intrinsically evil, a satanic plot for the coming totalitarian world government of the antichrist... It's a red flag to these folks: OMG, the New World Order! Just finished reading again Morris Berman's "Dark Ages America." Given a bit more erudition, and a different style, the Cosmic Lady could have written this... Meanwhile, I'm appreciating some of your past entries. Where are the liberals in Washington these days?

  4. Marshall: What a nice note! Thank you. And where ARE all those liberals?

  5. Kris a teenager in the Haight 1980January 14, 2023 at 7:36 AM

    I looked Cosmic Lady up today because I think of her saying “the rent is due on the planet.”


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