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Jok Church, of Beakman and Jax cartoon strip for kids, dies at 67  
sfgate.com

Jok Church knew about gravity, about the planets and about why a spoon reflects an image of your face upside down €” and with a cartoonist€™s flair for the serious and the absurd, he loved to explain it all to kids. Mr. Church, the creator of the syndicated kid€™s cartoon strip You Can With Beakman and Jax, also knew why stuff slides to the back of a drawer when you pull it open (inertia) and what makes light-up sneakers light up (LEDs). Mr. Church died April 29 of an apparent heart attack while riding in a taxi near his Castro district home. Mr. Church arrived in Northern California with $85 in his pocket and found work as a news reporter for a Sacramento radio station. After a friend who worked as a landscaper for filmmaker George Lucas introduced the two men, Lucas hired Mr. Church to answer mail from young fans of his €œStar Wars€ movies, of which Mr. Church was a great admirer. Mr. Church found that answering kids€™ questions suited him, and he began doing the same thing in his new cartoon strip, first published in 1991 in the Marin Independent Journal. Each panel would feature a science question from a reader that Mr. Church€™s spiky-haired alter ego, Beakman, would answer in a whimsical manner while also providing a science experiment that the reader could perform to verify the information. Once, when a reader asked if there was such a thing as a cube-shaped soap bubble, Mr. Church spent hours constructing a bubble model with straws and paper clips €” only signing off on that comic strip after he finally produced a cube-shaped bubble of his own. In another cartoon, to prove that air has weight, Beakman advised readers to fill two balloons, fasten them to opposite ends of a ruler, tie the whole thing to a string, suspend and balance it in midair €” and then watch what happens to the ruler when you pop one of the balloons. [...] of his death, Mr. Church was in the process of drawing Beakman strips explaining why rubber balls bounce and what makes glue stick.
Submitted 5 hours ago by eureka!
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Newsom, pot proponents kick off campaign for California legalization
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Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, joined by leaders in law enforcement, public health and social justice, announced Wednesday in San Francisco that enough signatures had been collected to put recreational pot up for a vote in this year’s presidential election. The broad array of marijuana proponents, marking the official launch of their statewide campaign, o . . .

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