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Holiday, celebrate 

Thanksgiving is almost here, unless you’re reading this after Thanksgiving, in which case, Thanksgiving is already over, and, if you let this issue sit around a long time under some other papers on your coffee table, the busiest shopping day of the year drained your wallet and filled your closet with useless crap, Christmas is finished, and we’re well into 2005. Happy New Year, throw the confetti, I can’t believe another year of my life is gone.

The holidays came and went faster than Hearsay, a flash-in-the-pan blog devoted to rumors in the fertile and incestuous Central Coast media industry. On Nov. 19, an anonymous writer began posting jabs at local personalities and so-so celebrities like the Trib’s Sandra Duerr and Silas Lyons, KVEC’s Dave Congalton, producers at KCOY and KSBY, and the New Times’ own Steve Moss. The mystery blogger had been outed by a coworker at Clear Channel by Nov. 22. I’m no good with computers, so I can’t figure out exactly who is registered to, but if you can, I’ll give you one of the hand-knit sweaters my mom gave me for Christmas. It’s an extra-small, and I’m not, especially after all the Thanksgiving turkey I ate or have yet to eat, depending on when I wrote this and when you read it.

Before Hearsay’s online death rattle, the cyber-gossip-monger also claimed to know who I am, which is odd, since most days I don’t even know myself. I once went on a voyage of self-discovery, but all I found were a couple of stale Doritos, three nickels, and the remote control, which is what I was actually looking for in the first place. Put that in your blog and download it, you nameless thug. You should be ashamed of yourself for lashing out at hardworking locals from the comfort of your high-powered media outlet, cloaked in the warm, cocky blanket of anonymity.

You should take a tip from former local pretty boy, Poly prof, and sometimes New Times contributor Kevin Sites, who has the decency to wrap himself in the warm, cocky blanket of national celebrity or infamy, depending on whether you talk to members of his media fan club or pro-military conservatives upset that he’s reporting on what our soldiers are doing around the world.

Sites, a freelance journalist and blogger himself, apparently stuck his Iraq-imbedded nose deep into a pile of Iraq-embedded controversy when he eye-witnessed a Marine shooting what appeared to be a wounded, unarmed Iraqi in a mosque, which, if you follow the evening news, is like a church, but with less crosses and more hand grenades.

Sites didn’t say that what the Marine did was bad, and he didn’t say it was good, either, but soon, some Americans back home were screaming at the military, and some were screaming at Sites, and above all the screaming, pundits were shouting, and above all the shouting, military officials were yelling until the whole mess sounded a lot like Fallujah, and you got fed up and changed the channel back to football, like you always do.

Through it all, Sites has maintained that he somehow unfairly became “a lightning rod for controversy� by doing his job, a sentiment shared by many major players in the ongoing sewer soap opera of Los Osos.

A recent Los Osos Community Services District vote on some obscure sewer-related talking point prompted hours of debate, ending in members deciding on what’s called a volume-based rate structure, which, as far as I can tell, charges fees to speakers during public comment periods depending on how loud they talk. Or not. The details are so confusing, especially since some people say there’s going to be a workshop to review rate options, and others say there won’t be any workshops to review rate options or water use or anything at all ever. Period. I think.

I say that everybody in the whole city should attend a communication workshop and learn to say what they mean and mean what they say, because, like I said and meant, I can never follow this mess, what with sewer supporters shouting, and sewer opponents yelling over them, and CSD leadership, like General Manager Bruce Buel vehemently denying that there have been any inconsistencies in the board’s decisions and explaining that final decisions will come around in mid December, and everybody closing their ears against everyone else and shouting louder until the whole thing sounds a lot like Fallujah, and I get fed up and change the channel back to NBC to find out whether Sites has been fragged yet.

I hope he gets out alive. I hope everybody does.

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