By Allen David
Once they were three places, called by the names of Edgemont, Sunnymead and Moreno. But after a vote of the residents, those three places were incorporated on December 3, 1984 to form the general law city of Moreno Valley. Nice name, one that signified the transition of this part of the Inland Empire from backwards boondocks to forward-looking suburbia. Well, that’s what it used to represent. But people living in Pigeon Pass—a small rural enclave just north of Moreno Valley but required to use that name on their addresses, drivers’ licenses and the like—recently voted for a new name to separate themselves from what they assert is Moreno Valley’s “stigma.” They’ve got a point. Actually, they’ve got a bunch of them. Moreno Valley has well-known problems with crime, gangs, loss of businesses, corruption and a federal investigation involving city council members and others. Property values are beginning to fall in areas of the city where businesses have left. “We don’t want to be negative,” says Lydia Thompson, a 13-year resident who led the push for a new name. “We just want to have our own special area—because we are special.” So what name did these special people in this special area choose to designate their specialness? Spring Hills. Spring Hills? Bleh.
THURSDAY, JULY 25
I was gonna throw in my two cents, but the PE commenters pretty much covered everything. Recall Moreno Valley’s City Council asks: “Is the stigma of Moreno Valley the reason the “Mayor” has decided to locate our City Hall in “Rancho Belago” even though it’s not located east of Lasalle? Just google “Moreno Valley City Hall” and see what it shows. I have a suggestion for Tom Owings. If you don’t like the name of our city, maybe you should move. We won’t be insulted but relieved. Congratulations to the newly formed Spring Hills.” From Wake Up MoVal: “We need to change ‘MoVal’ to ‘Tombstone.’
Bob Rimac writes: “Changing a name to Spring Hills does not get rid of all those years of pigeon poop.” And Jason Walsh chimes in: “Ahh, the old ‘putting perfume on a ‘term’ trick.” And then Jason Walsh chimes in yet again: “I meant ‘turd’ . . . F’ing Apple autocorrect!”
FRIDAY, JULY 26
SATURDAY, JULY 27
A month after it again became legal for same-sex couples to marry in California, a mass “Rainbow Wedding” ceremony at the Inland Empire Pride Center draws exactly nobody. Considering the work that had gone into preparing the place—the decorations in the lobby, the donated presents, the ordained minister on hand—Inland Empire Pride director P.J. Seleska decides to wait awhile for any possible late arrivals. They never arrive. Seleska had planned the Rainbow Wedding as a service to the Inland Empire Pride’s mostly-poor constituency. So what does the lack of a turnout signify? Hmmm, hard to say, but from here it looks like equality. Any idea how many heterosexual couples might have shown up for a cattle-call mass wedding? Being gay means nobody has to play that, anymore.
SUNDAY, JULY 28
Maybe we don’t understand it, but whoever is decorating fire hydrants in Yucaipa to represent Minions—the weird yellow beings with the incomprehensible language from the hit movie Despicable Me 2—must have a very, very important reason. Consider the motivation for the last significant transformation of fire hydrants, way back in the early-to-mid 1970s, when some red, white and blue paint had them looking like Revolutionary War soldiers in honor of the United States bi-centennial. That was patriotism, my fellow countrymen. You don’t have a problem with patriotism . . . do you? And you’re not going to quibble over some imagined difference between honoring the 200th birthday of our nation and promoting the sequel to a kids’ summer movie featuring one of the most-annoying characters ever . . . are you? Judging by the smiles and snapshots being generated around Yucaipa by these street-corner arts-and-crafts projects, the answer from real Americans is obvious. Of course, it’s not unanimous, and why are we not surprised that some of the objections are coming from The Man—suggestions from cops and firefighters that the hydrants with Minions Makeovers might represent vandalism or an obstacle to emergency operations. Wonder what the Minions would have to say about that? Wonder whether we’d ever understand it.
MONDAY, JULY 29
Fire Mike Scioscia Reason No. 56: The Angels manager watches, dead-faced, from the dugout as his team loses, 4-3, on two ninth-inning home runs to a Texas Rangers team that entered the game on a four-game losing streak during which it had not scored a run in more than 26 innings.
TUESDAY, JULY 30