Thursday, October 16, 2014

Bako Bits: beware of all those panhandlers at our local gas stations and who in the world would put a metal clamp on a dog's leg to keep him tethered?

 * … SCAMS: I can't get enough of these scams going on around town. Listen to this reader who had an encounter at the downtown AM/PM gas station where a nicely dressed young man was seen using a plastic container to pour gas into his own car. "While I was filling my car, I saw him talking to another
customer and heard him say he ran out of gas in the country; a friend picked him up, and brought him to the gas station.  'If you could just fill my gas can with gas, I think I will have enough to get my car back into town.' Sounds honest enough; clean cut guy; not asking for money. But he would take the full gas can to his car, parked behind Subway, poured it in his car tank and then went back to the station, telling the same story to another unsuspecting customer."

 * … BAD FORM: This week brought a torrent of bad news, starting with the discovery of a stray black dog who was found with a large metal clamp piercing his leg. The clamp was used to tether the dog to a post, and veterinarians believe it was put there about a week ago. What kind of monster would do this to a dog? Then, later this week, someone burned down the playground equipment at Endeavor Elementary School in Rosedale.

 * … GOOD ADVICE: But every bad deed is answered by someone like Drew Douglas, who at just 9 years old has something to say about our litter problem. In a well thought note to The Californian, she said this: "Littering is bad but people do it anyway… Littering hurts animals, the ground and the earth. If you’re one of those people, then I would try to stop as much as you can. Littering destroys the world with trash! Me and my friend found all kinds of trash at our school and we threw it away. Don’t you want a better, cleaner place to live too?" Sound advice.

* … FOODIE: I have two recommendations if you are in the downtown area: The Union Station Deli across from the post office on 18th Street offers excellent service and a killer pot pie soup, and The Wall Street Cafe on L Street features one of the best beet salads I have ever had.

 * … CARR: Local talk radio host Ralph Bailey, who boasts an impressive deep knowledge of sports and the Oakland Raiders in particular, dropped me a note to share a few differences between the pro football debuts of brothers David and Derek Carr. "In David's first 167 pass attempts he was sacked 41 times, while Derek, even behind the blocking of my Raiders, has only hit the ground three times, according to CBS Sports. From a loyal yet miserable Raider fan." Thanks Ralph. (file photos of the Carr brothers)

 * … KUDOS: Hats off to the folks at Chevron for volunteering to clean up trash along China Grade Loop. Said reader Carole Cohen: "There were at least 15-20 volunteers working, and the before/after difference is quite spectacular. Take a drive through the area - start at Manor - and enjoy the results of their hard work. Thanks to all who participated for a job well done."

 * … PETS: The other day I mentioned the annual effort to collect blankets for stray dogs and cats that is planned for Saturday, Oct. 25, at the Petco on Gosford Road. Turns out I didn't correctly identify the group accurately. The organization is called Busters Pet Fund. Kudos to these folks who care for the strays among us.

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