Fast Talk: Weekly odds and ends
by Ron Swift | Patterson Irrigator
Mar 29, 2012 | 363 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Ron Swift
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Having worked in the newspaper business for 60 years (yes, I started when I was 2), I recognize a slow news week when I see one.

So, dear readers, prepare yourselves for a slow news week. I think you’ll agree.

Let’s start with city government. (Ah, come on, don’t desert me now.)

This is an exciting election year. Really. Not only will President Barack Obama’s name be on the ballot in November, plus a Republican opponent if they can choose a candidate, but Pattersonites will also be electing a mayor and two other members to the City Council.

Oh, you say, we just did that. No, that was more than a year ago, and we have to do it again. That’s because we are the only city in these parts that elects a mayor every two years, as well as two council members. If the voters choose to do so, they can put three new bodies on the five-member council every two years.

Mayor Luis Molina has been in office for just more than a year and will soon find himself facing a re-election campaign. The four-year council terms of Annette Smith and Dominic Farinha also expire late this year.

The local political season, which starts when the filing period opens in July, is less than four months away. Really brings a smile to the face, does it not?

On another subject, let’s give further kudos to Jon Maring. He’s the one who spearheaded the volunteer efforts to reclaim Laird Park near Grayson from an unsightly patch of weeds. Trees and weeds removed, the land leveled, we suddenly again have a county park for all to enjoy.

Just drive by and have a look.

And leave it to a super sleuth at this newspaper to come up with another Apricot Capital. This one is Malatya, a city of about 420,000 in central-eastern Turkey. Malatya even has an Apricot Festival, an annual event since 1978. (Our fiesta started in 1971; so there.)

Malatya bills itself only as the Apricot Capital of Turkey. Whew! That was close.

Another turns 90

Back on Jan. 10, longtime West Side resident Julia A. Perez observed her 90th birthday. She’s lived in the Patterson-Westley area for more than 50 years, and all of her children graduated from Patterson High.

But our 90-plus list of local residents lost Henry Morganti, a longtime Crows Landing farmer who died recently at age 97.

Note to recent emailer: Please resend the info on the person who turned 90 last Saturday. My computer inadvertently threw out the information and has been severely reprimanded.

Silence that cell

You might have read about it.

A Connecticut man was attempting to steal 700 pounds of metal when he accidentally dialed 911 on his cellphone. The police immediately responded, as police are prone to do, and an arrest was made.

We “anti-cellers” can only smile.

Today’s lesson

There are only two animals that can see behind themselves without turning their heads. Those would be the rabbit and the parrot.

Also, the elephant is the only animal that cannot jump. Fortunately.

Readers don’t have to go far to receive a solid education.

For the sports fan

The winter sports season of 1986-87 — 25 years ago — was undoubtedly the most successful in the history of sports at Patterson High. The wrestling team under coach Mike Worley went 23-0 in dual meets and won the section title and sent two grapplers to the state meet. Dave Klein took his boys basketball team (25-4 for the year) to the section finals after winning the league championship, and the girls team, headed by Tony Lomeli, finished 8-4 in the Trans-Valley League.

All three coaches were named coach of the year in the TVL, while Klein received the honor at the district level. It couldn’t get much better than that.

And finally…

The English language has its humorous side when used on signs in foreign lands. To wit:

At an airline ticket counter in Copenhagen: “We take your bags and send them in all directions.”

In a Swiss restaurant: “Our wine leaves you nothing to hope for.”

In a Japanese hotel: “You are invited to take advantage of the chambermaid.”

And this dandy in a laundry in Rome: “Ladies, leave your clothes here and then spend the afternoon having a good time.”

With that, have a great weekend.

• Ron Swift is editor/publisher emeritus of the Patterson Irrigator. He can be reached at

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