Sunday, January 1, 2012

Eight Condors spotted in downtown Bakersfield; an omen of good things to come?

* ... RESOLUTIONS: So did you dust off those New Year's resolutions yet? It's never too late to set some goals but don't forget to include charities on your list. Here's what Jayne Hotchkiss of Walker Basin has in mind. "I'm choosing the local ASPCA on Gilmore Street," she said.  "I figure humans can find help if they want it, but animals can't. Through the years I have taken in abandoned dogs, cats and  even horses that would have ended up in an auction. This will be a commitment to other animals that don't live at my ranch! I hope others follow."

 * ...  THE LIST: So what is on your list for giving this year? My list includes the pediatric care unit at Memorial Hospital, the Kern County YMCA, the local SPCA, Covenant Community Services located at 1700 North Chester Avenue and the History Department at my alma mater, Georgia Southern University.

 * ... GOOD OMEN: My downtown neighbor Keith Barnden awoke Sunday to spot what appeared to be eight California condors perched atop two tall pine trees across the street from his house. "I was shocked to look out my upstairs window to see these magnificent birds sitting there," he told me. Considering there are only about 400 known to exist, I'm taking that as an omen of good things to come in 2012. (file photo)

 * ... NEW YEAR'S RIDE: Almost 120 cyclists showed up at Beach Park for the annual New Year's Day ride up Round Mountain, where Kern Wheelmen volunteers were waiting with food and water. Too many people to name but among those I spotted were Danny Kaukola, Richard Picarelli, Greg Riggins, Jim Pappe, Kyle Lacey, Robin Ablin, Bob Smith, Greg Walker, Pete Elieff, Rogers Brandon, Kim Barker, Jack Skaggs, Hank and Patty Pfister, Brent and Cindy Bonetti, Mike Marotta, Anthony Finocchiaro, Carl Crawford, Scott Garrison, Joe Peterson, Tom Morgan, Zane Adamo, Zach Griffin, Frank Lobre, the aforementioned Keith Barnden and so many more.

* ... SPOTTED: When it comes to litter, I am never surprised by the ability of people to disappoint you. Consider this note from  Kim Bean, president of Ultra Star Industries: "Yesterday my husband and I were at the Heart Hospital visiting a family member. We were sitting in our vehicle in the parking lot when we noticed a woman getting into her newer model cream colored Audi sedan. Before driving off, she opened her door and deposited her litter which included a banana peel, a water bottle and other bits of garbage. My husband and I volunteered  five months last summer at El Capitan State Beach. Our primary duty was to pick up trash, and and we are simply amazed at how much people litter, especially here in Bakersfield. Now we notice the trash everywhere."

* ... CAVEAT EMPTOR? : Retired endodontist Dr. Robert Smith dropped me a note about some really bad customer service at the new "Sully's" Chevron gas station over off Buena Vista and Ming Avenue in Seven Oaks. The sign out front advertized $3.59 a gallon for regular gas using cash or a credit card. "So I pull up to the pump, swipe my Mastercard and the price-gallon on the pump reads $3.69 a gallon!" He cancels the sale, goes inside to tell the clerk of the mistake and "she says no, the $3.59 is for cash sale. I say, au contraire, take a look and sho'nuf, she takes a look and the sign is flashing $3.59 a gallon for both cash and credit sales. "The clerk apologizes but then says' the gal who is in charge of that is off for a couple of days so, too bad.'" Dr  Smith eventually took his business elsewhere.  "Make sure the pump price jives with the advertized price!" he said.


Anonymous said...

Condors? Really? Probably turkey vultures. They're all over town this time of year.

Anonymous said...

When carrion-feeding birds are hanging around near you it's hard to think of it as a good omen --unless I've been misreading years of film and cartoon imagery...

David S. Musick said...

Just reading through. Bakersfield is my hometown and most of my either reside there or are buried there. I miss it a lot; but lately I've been hearing barbs hurtled at my home State that in the 50'sI and early 60'sTuesday I would have never heard. California is now known in the Southwest as "The People's Republic of California". Kern County was "Grapes of Wrath" country. It's the place my grandparents came to, to escape the West Texas dust bowl in 1936. They brought values, work ethic, and family pride with them. What the heck happened to you people over the last 50three years?