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From Russian River notoriety to party-hopping in fast lane

It didn't make the Biggest Stories of 2010. But you'll remember the tale of young Nick Gruber renting a Russian River vacation home in January -- ostensibly for proposing to his girlfriend before shipping off with the Army to Afghanistan -- and then hosting a rave party so huge the deck collapsed, injuring people.

More recent developments suggest that Gruber did not have a girlfriend and his occupation is not soldiering.

Unless there are more than one 20-year-old Nicholas Grubers, the fellow who told a bittersweet love story in order to rent the Guerneville house has spent much of the year party-hopping with Calvin Klein.

Internet photos of the 68-year-old fashion designer and his blond companion have satisfied folks at Russian River Getaways, who still have an ID picture of Gruber, that their least favorite client has had some cosmetic work done and has left River Road for the fast lane.

Should you Google Gruber, you might not want the kids looking over your shoulder. The El Molino High grad's professional interests appear to include underwear modeling and, well, acting. The rental agents at Russian River Getaways will concede that the guy can pull off a persuasive line.

And he certainly is lucky. I'm not talking about this thing with Calvin Klein. Our boy Gruber is lucky the stunt at the river house a year ago didn't kill anybody.

VISION FOR CAMBODIA: Santa Rosa eye doc Gary Barth is packing for his first trip to Cambodia.

He won't do much sight-seeing, but he'll improve the sight of scores of impoverished Cambodian people who've had little chance of being seen by one of their country's only nine eye surgeons.

Barth will spend the days performing cataract surgery, something he's done on eight or nine trips to India through the Seva Foundation, co-founded by Wavy Gravy.

The ophthalmologist is eager to serve Cambodians for several reasons. There's the nightmare the nation suffered under Pol Pot, and the outrage Barth has carried since the U.S. bombed Cambodia in 1968.


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