Welcome to Bakersfield Observed. Our mission is to celebrate life in Kern County by focusing on newsmakers and events and the local characters who make this community such a special place. The views expressed here are strictly my own and do not reflect the views of any other individual, organization or company.
* ... ALAN TANDY: Is City Manager Alan Tandy standing in the way of a faster, cheaper way to build a low barrier homeless shelter? That's what City Councilman Willie Rivera thinks, and he articulated it during an appearance on The Richard Beene Show this week. Rivera claimed that Tandy
* ... REPLACING TANDY: Meanwhile the city has more than 20 applicants to replace Tandy, and at least one of them in an inside candidate. I am told that city attorney Ginny Gennaro has thrown her hat into the ring to replace Tandy. No word on if our two assistant city managers, Chris Huot and Jacqui Kitchen, have also applied. Gennaro is well respected and well liked on the city council. (file photos if Gennaro, Kitchen and Hot)
* ... FULL MOON: Are you ready for the last full moon of the decade? Well that is happening this week so get ready to cast your eyes toward the sky to catch it. Known as the "cold moon," this one will appear larger and brighter than usual, according to NASA. "Cold Moon" is a name the Algonquin tribes gave December's full moon as a way to mark the long, cold nights that accompany it. Other nicknames for this month's moon include Oak Moon, Moon before Yule, Long Night Moon, Uduvapa Poya, the Karthikai Deepam Moon and the Chang'e Moon.
* ... ARE WE 'BAD PEOPLE?': If you come from a farming family or one involved with oil, do you consider yourself a "bad person?" Well, apparently Jackson Kernion does and she should know because - well, you know - he teaches philosophy courses at UC Berkeley and he is prone to deep thinking. "I unironically embrace the bashing of rural Americans," Kernion wrote in a now deleted tweet. "They, as a group, are bad people who have made bad life decisions ... and we should shame people who aren't pro-city." Okay, let that sink in for a minute. This is a teacher at an elite university who apparently has no shame. Kernion also said rural citizens should pay more in taxes and be forced to live "uncomfortable" lives for rejecting "efficient" city life. Kernion later deleted the tweet and said he would "reflect" on it. And there you have it.
* ... SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT: If you work in the oil and gas industry, it is hard enough dealing with distortions and half truths when it comes to the fossil fuel industry. And that is what happened when former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger went on 'Meet the Press' last week and proclaimed - inaccurately - that Kern County produces more jobs in the solar industry than the oil and gas. Among those who were livid was Tracy Leach, head of Providence Consulting, who represents fossil fuel interests. Said Providence: "In the Meet the Press interview, Schwarzenegger stated as fact that the solar industry provides more jobs for our area than oil. The truth is our oil and gas industry provides 23,900 direct and indirect jobs whereas solar has only 1500 permanent jobs created since 2007! Clearly there is no comparison and how the former California governor got this so wrong is very unfortunate."
* ... SPOTTED ON TWITTER: "Tonight I'll be drinking wine from the skull of the guy that wouldn't stop asking questions during the webinar."
* ... BAD FORM: Just when you things could not get worse, you learn that people who received gifts from non-profits are returning them to retailers for cash. That's right, just check out this post I spotted on Facebook: "I just witnessed the most sickening thing... a woman returning multiple 'gifts,' clothes, bikes, skateboards, dolls... all given by Angel Tree. Walmart didn't give her cash, but they gave her a gift card to be used for ANYTHING Walmart sells! After almost crying (seriously), I asked the Walmart associate how often they saw this, the answer was ALL DAY the day after Christmas... IF you do give to ANY of the multiple organizations that give to the needy children, please take time to mark through the bar code with a black Sharpie (Walmart says they look for this)...(I copied and pasted this from a friend. Sickening!) Mark through those barcodes.":
* ... MEMORIES: A walk down memory lane in pictures, looking first at the old Kress building and later an old theater back in the day.