Pondering Blogs at 36,000 Feet

By Darryl Manzer
"Way Back When"
The Signal
Sunday, October 29, 2006

    It isn't always that I get to write on a Monday morning. Usually I'm someplace between lost and confused as I start my work week. Today I'm sitting on an airplane headed West, but of course by the time you read this, I'll have been in town and back out again.
    For you folks in West Ranch, know that by the time you've read this, I'll have spent two nights in your neighborhood.
    Altitude: 36,000 feet, headed to 40,000. What fun. Here I am in a large metal cylinder with 150 other folks. I can see the blog headline now ... "Darryl Manzer has five hours of intercourse with the lady in seat 9D." Only in the bloggers' dreams (and if I were much younger, mine, too) — but is it news? Fact? Fiction? And those same bloggers dare to call this newspaper a "fishwrap."
    And to think, I never even got her name.
    You get the idea. There are a few blogs that are well-researched and -written. Then there are the rest.
    By the way: Don't read the back of a dried pineapple package, because I just learned that the preservative used is sulfur dioxide. Isn't that one of the main ingredients of smog?
    Later in the week, in the early morning, I continue...
    You Californians are so funny. Get a bunch of signatures on a petition and any old silly item on the ballot. Like the measure to have a $50 tax added to all parcels of real estate. Newhall Land and Farming can afford it; can you?
    And then there is the $2.60 tax on cigarettes. Like they already don't cost too much? Alcohol kills as many folks as tobacco, so when are you going to increase the tax on alcohol?
    Just a note: Ever since you folks adopted your non-smoking rules, all I see is more cigarette butts on the ground outside restaurants and bars, At least get those smoking folks some ashtrays, OK?
    I'm glad you don't have to decide on more money in the way of bonds for William S. Hart Union High School District. Haven't you given that school board enough money to squander already? Now the board members claim they weren't informed of what was going on with the "out-of-control" construction costs. Why not? Isn't that the job y'all elected them to accomplish?
    Do I hear "recall"? Not yet, at least, but it appears now to be long overdue.
    I'm very glad to see you've got some initiatives on the ballot to get the infrastructure of California fixed. Some of the freeways I've been on, of late, are as rough as the roads in Mentryville. After this trip, the car rental company might have to have my vehicle re-aligned. So I hope y'all pass measures 1A, B, C and D. But couldn't you have come up with a better way to number them?
    I'd better watch out — this is starting to read like the Republican Party voter's guide many of you got in the mail. Sorry about that.
    Meanwhile, back in Virginia, the weather is getting COLD. Frost at the house last night, according to my much better half. It means I could get back and see some leaves turning red, yellow and gold.
    The elections there are anyone's guess, but I suspect the only real winners in this election cycle will be those who produce all of those stupid television and radio spots. Are y'all as sick of those ads as I am? Thought so.
    When it comes to election ads, I can finally find a use for the only decent speech I've heard at a Democratic National Convention in the last 35 years — and it was from Al Gore.
    He said, "It is time for them to go," about 30 times in a single speech. Same way with those ads. "It is time for them to go."
    Maybe on the flight back to Virginia, I can have another five hours of intercourse on the plane.
    Oh — like the local blogs, I left out a few facts: That would be verbal intercourse.
    Just what were y'all thinking?

Darryl Manzer grew up in the Pico Canyon oil town of Mentryville in the 1960s and attended Hart High School. After a career in the U.S. Navy he returned to live in the Santa Clarita Valley and eventually relocated to Boulder City, Nev. He can be reached at dmanzer@scvhistory.com. His older commentaries are archived at DManzer.com; his newer commentaries can be accessed [here]. Watch his walking tour of Mentryville [here].