I have an epiphany! Oh . . . you, too? Must be the day for it.
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 7
Guess when you think about it, “Unsolved Homicide” is another way of saying “Go Fish”—which is definitely the game that the San Bernardino County sheriff’s Cold Case Team is playing as it deals out decks of cards featuring the faces of victims and suspects involved in long-ago murders. Cute, in a creepy kind of way. Or is it the other way around? The point is, inmates who may know something about the cases can provide anonymous tips. The 5,000 decks will be available to nearly 6,000 inmates at the county’s four jails—let’s recite them together, shall we: Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino, Devore and Adelanto—which seems to mean that potentially 1,000 criminals will be left out. Here’s hoping that any resulting hurt feelings don’t get anyone hurt any worse.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 8
Armageddon? Nope, just a little earthquake. Bummer.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 9
The day-after descriptions of the relatively inconsequential 4.5-magnituder seem to show that the local populace really is almost ready to handle The Big One. Get a load of these quotes culled from the Press-Enterprise and Sun. Abby Ayala of Rubidoux: "If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought a giant had picked up the building and shook it." Tim Franke, San Bernardino County fire supervisor: "It was a little roll and a big jolt, then a sonic boom kind of noise." Stephanie Castillo, a San Bernardino resident who lives near the epicenter: “It felt like someone was trying to pick up the house.” Karen Brown, a dispatcher with the U.S. Forest Service working at Tippecanoe Avenue and Mill Street: "It felt like the building was picked up, dropped and shook." Red Lands, a commenter on the San Bernardino Sun blog: “It made a loud crash, like a car wreck had just happened.” Jazmin, also from the Sun blog: “i live in sanbernadino i was on my space whean it happin of cores we whear scared i didnt evean feel the aftershok it wasnt 15 seconds it was 1 min i live whear it happpin i was frekin scard.” Even Susan Hough, the scientist in charge of the U.S. Geological Survey’s office in Pasadena, seemed to have been expecting more after seven aftershocks ranged in magnitude from 1.1 to 3.3 between 8:06PM to 9:06PM: "It’s a pretty wimpy aftershock sequence." Well not counting my reaction to Jazmin’s handle on the English language, anyway.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 10
A story on the local sex trade in today’s Inland Valley Bulletin is undeniably heartfelt—and not entirely in a good way. After reading it awhile it’s almost impossible not to uncomfortably wonder what else reporter Wesley G. Hughes might have been feeling as he wrote. Beginning with the headline—“Ontario’s Holt Boulevard: Hotbed for young girl prostitutes”—the overwrought piece comes across as a how-to manual. “The hottest place for all hookers, young and old, in the Inland area . . . is along Holt Boulevard in Ontario west from Euclid Avenue to Montclair and Pomona, a distance of roughly two miles or more,” Hughes offers, perhaps a little too helpfully. “Another way to find them . . . ” Well, you get the idea. He goes on like that, providing Websites and such, and doing so in such crime-show language that you almost suspect that somebody is getting titillated. Also? The online ad for the University of LaVerne that accompanies the story—the one featuring the pretty young coed holding an apple—is really unfortunately placed.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 11
Assembling a field for the “celebrity” tournament at the 50th Bob Hope Desert Classic is probably a no-win situation, inasmuch as the presenter of this year’s event is Arnold Palmer. Arnie’s what—147 years old? Yet he’s still the best reason to watch a bunch of fancy pants chase their balls all over four desert courses this week. Still, it’s pretty amazing what passes for fame when it comes to the “celebrity” portion of the event. Josh Kelley, Oliver Hudson, John O’Hurley—stop me when you’ve heard of one of these doofs. And the sad fact is, the guys you haven’t heard of are preferable to the names you recognize. Huey Lewis and Michael Bolton? William Devane? Tom Dreesen? Former Vice President Dan Quayle? Well, that could be fun—especially if they pair him with Yogi Berra.
MONDAY, JANUARY 12
What’s the best spot in all of Riverside County to construct a massive new 7,200-bed jail? Well, it’s obvious—the almost-pristine junction of Interstate 10 and Highway 111, an area of fine pale sands and dramatic mountain backdrops that has pretty much been the perfect gateway to Palm Springs since tourists began bothering to make the trip. What, not so obvious to you? Well, then it’s obvious you’re not a member of the Coachella Valley Public Safety Committee, which today votes unanimously to support the jail—mostly because it will be a more convenient drive for law-enforcement officials than other sites. Is it obvious now?