Thursday, December 17, 2009

Meir Brown on the Stockdale Highway traffic mess and is "Bako" a derogatory term?

* ... WHEN GOVERNMENT RESPONDS: Meir Brown, owner of the Cafe Med restaurant on Stockdale Highway, was one of the retailers who saw his business plummet when the city decided to take Stockdale down to two lanes during the lengthy widening project. Business owners like Meir were "appalled" that the city chose the peak of the holiday season to force drivers to run the gauntlet, scaring away virtually everyone save a precious loyal few, but a little pressure can sometimes do wonders. In Meir's words:

 "I have to say that at the end of the process, as I look at six lanes flowing on Stockdale Highway a full  three weeks ahead of schedule, some level of confidence in one's ability to affect change in the working of local government has been restored in me. The City Councilmen we approached - Dave Couch, Harold Hanson and Sue Benham, as well County Supervisor Mike Maggard - responded swiftly and positively. Although significant damage was inflicted on all the merchants in the Stockdale corridor, it could have been considerably worse. The process was encouraging and educational for me, as I said I did not believe we could make a difference. Also, I hope the process was educational for city officials as well and that unnecessary hardships could be minimized in the future for other businesses like ours."


* ... PACIFIC GRAD COMES HOME: I've been getting a lot of input recently from local kids who went to University of Pacific and came home. The latest is Dr. Dana L. Yeoman who graduated from West High in 1993 and went on to earned her bachelor’s degree in 1997. She was accepted to Loma Linda University School of Dentistry and received her DDS in 2003. Dr. Dana, as her patients call her, returned to Bakersfield and worked with her dad, Dr. Leland R. Yeoman, for a year before deciding to stay in Bakersfield and have her own practice as Second Smile Denture Care.

* ... ANOTHER DENTIST: The parents of Joshua Divelbiss, a Centennial High grad who went on to Brigham Young University,  proudly added Joshua to the list. He went to the University of Southern California Dental School before returning to set up his dental practice here in Bakersfield and  is now associated with Adept Dental Group. As his father Bruce Divelbiss said: "A big shout out to all our young people who bring their training and expertise back home to enrich our community. "

* ... BAKO OR BAKERSFIELD?: I enjoyed some friendly email banter with Sharon Milton who took me to task for frequently referring to Bakersfield as "Bako." I use the term loosely and as a term of endearment, but Sharon sees it as an insult and wonders about its origin. "Why shorten it?" she asked "Are you embarrassed to call our town by it's full name? This is what is disrespectful. Who wants to visit a great town called "Bako?" What is your take? Let me hear from you.


Anonymous said...

as for returnees, some are getting a little long in the tooth.
Bako is fine in a Blog. Echo Town might be streching it.

Dana Martin said...

It appears that the SoCal hip factor is finding its way north? We now have a nickname like some areas in "SoCal" (The O.C., Fig, etc.). I consider myself Bako's biggest cheerleader. Born & raised here, I've suffered through my share of being the butt of jokes, the "Why would you ever want to live THERE?" question, and the heat. Oh, the heat. It doesn't matter what we call it, how comedians may refer to us, or that we appear aesthetically displeasing from the freeway. Bako is ours, and we love it... no matter what we call it. So many words these days are truncated. Why not Bakersfield. :)

Matt said...

"Bako" is like saying "mom" or "dad", instead of "mother" or "father"...that sounds too stuffy.

"Bako" is much more affectionate and a place I'd rather visit.

Anonymous said...

Some people need to stop taking themselves so seriously. I love the "Bako". It is an insiders term and I love being a Bako insider.

ALittleGuitar said...

I think it should be called by its formal name: Field of Bakers.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Milton's right! Bako sounds like some sort of product -- bacon bits???

Anonymous said...

Bako is fine...some people need to get a life...

Anonymous said...

Hi Richard. I love the term Bako and use it often, and I'm a Bako native. My first recollection of hearing the term was when the original Great American Melodrama theatre came to town in the early 80s. That Melodrama has its first location in Oceano and most of the actors at the start had worked in Oceano before moving to Bakersfield. The actors started using the term Bako for short hand when talking about the two towns - Oceano and Bako.

Jan Hefner

Anonymous said...

Love it. From a Bako born n raised. Left and came back. LA area friends and business partners started it in my world. At first I
didn't like it but it IS a term of endearment in their book.

Marcelle Tillett

Laird Funk (BHS 1963) Williams, Oregon said...

Reading the Californian when I am in town to interact with relatives is one of the pleasures of the trip- I started reading it here back when it was taller than I was (seems we've both changed size)
Bako? Does tend to remind me that, at times, Bakersfield seems "Half-Bakoed" B'field is what I and my relations call it.

Anonymous said...

It might be interesting to survey your readers ..... how many buy your statement that "Bako" is a term of endearment?

Janice and I don't think so.

Dave Parker

Anonymous said...

I think folks ought to lighten up! It's not an insult when you call a city you live in by a shorten name. Citizens of San Francisco call their city "Frisco', and no insult is intended.

Besides, I like "Bacos' on my salad, anyway!

"If You Live By The Rules, You'll Miss Out On All The Fun !"
Doug "You Gotta' Break At Least One Rule A Day!" Wagner
Bakersfield, California

Anonymous said...

Just keep in mind that us girls did not actually term Bako. I'm sure we must have picked it up along the way from the good ole' boys, ie. Cousin Herb, Merle Haggard, Buck, etc. as in 'Good ole' Bako'. You might mention to Shirley (mornings' blog) that it's better than living in Toad Suck, Arkansas.

Patti Imes

Anonymous said...

I agree with Sharon. It's a little too "text messagee" for newsprint. I've also thought it unprofessional and insulting. You asked. You got!

Caroline O. Reid

Anonymous said...

There is nothing disrespectful about using Bako. I've definitely heard worse nicknames - Bakershole and Bakerspatch for example - used to describe our city. I like to think of Bakersfield as the poor little ugly dog that grows on you over time and becomes cute. What better nickname to give that dog than Bako?

Joel Young

Anonymous said...

Since you once told me you can use incomplete sentences in a newspaper because you write a "blog," I guess "Bako" seems OK also. I agree with the person that said it sounds like bacon bits, and I don't really like it. (And I have a life.) By the way, to a previous writer, I've found that citizens in San Francisco usually hate to have their city called "Frisco."

Anonymous said...

"Bakersfield vs. Bako
In your column is fine.

Bakersfield is too long.
Bako saves time.

Embarrassment is not the intent nor pun.
When using Bako, to me it sounds like fun."

Darlyn Baker

Anonymous said...

"Bako, Bakersfield... Sharon needs to "chill out" and stop taking Life too seriously. I would say it doesn't matter to a lot of outsiders anyway. I Love bako, and I Love Bakersfield!"

Oscar Baltazar

Anonymous said...

Dunno why people who offer their opinions on this blog get told to "chill out" or "get a life" or "stop taking life so seriously" by people who don't agree with them. No doubt these same people have strong opinions in one area or another and would not like to be told that they and their opinions are valueless.