Today I heard a newscaster say that America is feeling a sense of normalcy observing Independence Day activities nationwide. The Big Bay Boom was back in San Diego and in Escondido we had our fabulous fireworks show at Grape Day Park.
I might add that there were multiple locations of smaller fireworks displays around town. One woman asked me “is that legal?” We both chuckled when I answered “no.” Actually heard some booms around midnight.
However, the biggest testimony to our almost full return to normalcy happened in New York City’s Coney Island with Nathan’s hosting their ever popular hot dog eating contest. I don’t get the popularity of watching people gorge themselves with scores of soggy tube steaks. And the winner is, drum roll, Joey Chestnut … again. This guy set a new record gulping down 76 dogs in 10 minutes and never tasted one. Nathan’s is my hot dog of choice and I achieved my personal best consuming two dogs in 10 minutes. You may recall it took me 15 minutes last year and my new record will stand.
During the week I jot down notes that I may or may not use in this column. By the way, what is the origin of the term “jot?” I think I’ll ask word guru Richard Lederer. Following are some items I jotted down.
The other day I read in a U-T editorial where a mention was made of flying from Tijuana to San Diego. Really, a 40 mile flight? And the print media questions the public distrust of today’s journalism. Another editorial championed the San Diego Council text messaging people about an agenda item of their interest. Let’s see now. If one has a smart phone to receive text messages that person also has the ability to access any website including a council agenda as we have in Escondido. If an issue is of such great interest to you would you not check agendas on-line as I do?
Last week I mentioned how some happenings result in my mind switching to something similar in my past which results in a story. I saw a photo of a man holding a witching rod. Nothing more than a Y shaped stick which will bob when sensing a water source. About 35 years ago a builder we were working with was purchasing a vacant lot on Cimarron Terrace. There were some rock outcroppings on site and he wanted to know to what extent since the site required a septic system and leach lines.
He hired a witcher. We asked, a what? Well, the witcher comes to the site and gets his stick and proceeds to walk the lot. Depending on how many times the stick bobbed he determined the depth of the rock(s). And surprisingly enough, he was spot on. Thus the builder was convinced that the lot was in fact buildable with proper excavation and grading. To quote President Biden, “This is not a joke.”
California likes to refer to itself as a pacesetter for the country. Here is the latest. The State is considering legalizing psychedelic drugs such as LSD, magic mushrooms and MDMA aka Ecstasy. It appears we are going back to the 1960’s because learned people say that psychedelic drugs may aid in treating mental illnesses. I never did drugs, heck I haven’t even had a prescription for anything in about 23 years, but I guess hallucinating makes you forget who or where you are. Again, not a joke.
Did you fill up the tank before the new gas tax went into effect on July 1? This is just another example how wording in a ballot initiative/proposition is paramount in gaining voter approval, or not. The office of the Secretary of State, the person charged with crafting ballot language, must have a team of linguists on staff to create often times confusing double negatives so as to confuse the voter. Sometimes a yes vote means no. In 2018 we had the opportunity to stop the gas tax but too many voters were duped with doublespeak. And now Xavier Becerra is Secretary of HHS in Washington.
Thank you to Caltrans for finally repaving Hwy 78 through Escondido. About 5 years ago I met with then District Director Laurie Berman asking that Ash Street between Valley Pkwy and Grand be repaired as it was the worst section of street in Escondido. Julie Procopio, Director of Engineering Services also asked for the improvements but alas it is now in process. I think everyone will be pleased when the work is completed from Lincoln Avenue to Washington to Ash and South.
Oh, I received an email from Amazon informing me that my account has been locked for security reasons. Oh no not that. I have never had an Amazon account, do not have an Amazon account and never intend to have an Amazon account as I prefer to have my sales tax spent in Escondido. Beware.
The latest vanity plates. WEHELP1, service provider? DATADVN, not sure, techie?