Friday, January 30, 2009

Green Living by Janet Marchant: Expect Greener Winters Across Our Nation, Thanks to Stimulus Spending!

Oh, I'm just so excited! I heard that our new president wants to provide money for "shovel ready" projects that will get our country's economic engines revving, and I know just the thing for that. You might remember that I wrote about it in this very column not long ago. What takes lots of shoveling? That's right: burning coal for heat!

Federal money for coal will not only keep Alamedans warm through the winter, but also nurture the fledgling clean coal industry. So grab your scuttle and shovel now, and call your government representatives to let them know that your household is a lean, green, shovel-ready project just waiting for that stimulus money. I know my shovel is ready!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sandwich Maker Doth Protest Too Much


It seems that S.O.S.!A. has struck a nerve with our searing indictment of corruption in the sandwich industry. Sandwich shop owner Antonio Bologna denies that he and his colleagues are in the pocket of Big Baloney, but his suspiciously forecful denial proves that all of our worst fears about governmental lunch fund mismanagement are true, beyond a shadow of a doubt.

As we all know from long experience with crooked food producers, the stronger the denial of an accusation, the more likely it is to be true. Who can forget the phrase, "Pop Rocks and Coke do not make your stomach explode"? Well, just try to tell that to the bereaved parents of the kid who played "Mikey" on that cereal commercial.

Methinks the sandwich maker doth protest too much. Quite simply, Mr. Bologna is full of baloney.

Dave Williamson
Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sandwich Shop Owner Reacts to Sensational S.O.S.!.A. Press Release

Dear Editor:

I am writing to respond to the press release sensationalistically entitled "Alameda on the Cusp of Prandial Armageddon: Alameda's Sandwich Crisis, the Impact on Public Services, and the Future of the World as We Know It," which you published yesterday. In it, I was so egregiously misquoted that I can only conclude that it was a deliberate attempt to distort my position beyond all recognition. In all my years in the business, I have never seen a so-called community activist behave in such an irresponsible and downright reprehensible way.

I'll try to make this perfectly clear: The city, state, and federal governments are not subsidizing the sandwich industry, and my fellow sandwich shop owners and I are not in the pockets of "Big Baloney," "Big Condiment," "Big Dough," or of anyone else, for that matter. I, for one, have had it up to here with Mr. Williamson and his antics, and I truly hope that this is the last word I will read on this whole ridiculous matter in your publication.

Sincerely Yours,
Antonio Bologna

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Sandwich "Bail-Out" Status…Subject of Urgent Press Release

Following is yet another press release from "Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda":

A leaked letter confirming that sandwich shop owners are siphoning money not only from the city of Alameda but also from the state and federal governments and will begin subsidizing Big Baloney and other sinister corporate interests almost immediately brings a sense of urgency to this, the latest press release from "Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda," ominously entitled "Alameda on the Cusp of Prandial Armageddon: Alameda's Sandwich Crisis, the Impact on Public Services, and the Future of the World as We Know It."

Sandwich shop owners have refused to acknowledge the "Big Baloney bail-out" possibility. But a letter—leaked to a soon-to-be-award winning daily noosepaper—confirmed early this week that an area sandwich shop owner's pocket are lined not only by "Alameda's municipal employees" but also "by the state government (whenever) a Caltrans worker (stops) in for a cup of joe" and "even subsidized by the federal government (whenever) a postal carrier (eats) lunch at my establishment!" Acknowledging the superior reasoning abilities of S.O.S.!.A.'s spokesperson, he continued, "Clearly this logic is utterly (irrefutable)."

Not to be outdone, the sandwich shop owner also revealed that, "our purchase of lunch meats (is) considered a subsidy for 'Big Baloney,' (and) our purchase of mustard (is) a subsidy for 'Big Condiment' and our purchase of bread (is) a subsidy for 'Big Dough.'"

"Sandwich shop owners are trying to downplay how beholden they are to Big Baloney and other corporate interests, yet even they freely admit that the conspiracy goes beyond Alameda and even Sacramento, all the way to Washington, D.C., involving a dizzying range of industries far beyond mere cold cuts." said Dave Williamson, a spokesperson for Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Sandwich Shop Owner Corrects the Record

Dear Editor:

As the long-time owner of a successful sandwich shop, I would like to provide the community with clear and accurate information as it pertains to the supposed "bail-out" of sandwich shops by municipal employees. I am often in communication with other purveyors of lunchtime fare, and I am sad to report that we have noticed a considerable drop-off in business ever since the group "Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda," or S.O.S.!A., began its sustained publicity blitz against what it has so misleadingly labeled "Big Baloney."

A recent press release issued by a Mr. Dave Williamson of S.O.S.!A. created the mistaken impression that taxpayer dollars are being used to "bail out" the sandwich business. Nothing could be further from the truth! Alameda's municipal employees are buying their lunches with their own hard-earned money; the fact that the City's payroll is ultimately funded by the taxpayers is completely irrelevant. If Mr. Williamson's reasoning were correct, then my shop would be subsidized by the state government if a Caltrans worker were to stop in for a cup of joe, or even subsidized by the federal government if a postal carrier were to eat lunch at my establishment! Clearly this logic is utterly ridiculous.

Furthermore, Mr. Williamson erroneously suggests that corporate interests are being subsidized by our purchase of sandwich ingredients. If our purchase of lunch meats were to be considered a subsidy for "Big Baloney," then our purchase of mustard would be a subsidy for "Big Condiment" and our purchase of bread would be a subsidy for "Big Dough." For S.O.S.!A. to portray our paying fair market price for supplies as some sinister kind of subsidy is, quite frankly, dishonest and wrong.

Local businesses like mine provide much-needed jobs and tax revenue in cities across America. If Mr. Williamson really wishes to "save his city," he should stop spreading false rumors that do nothing but harm the hard-working people in the lunch business. Just think of all the good that the time and money devoted to S.O.S.!A.'s misguided publicity campaign could do if they were put to constructive use.

Sincerely Yours,
Antonio Bologna

Friday, January 23, 2009

Green Living by Janet Marchant: Reducing Your Pesticide Use

Winter is here, all right. First we had those weeks of home heating emergencies, and now the rain is coming down and the humidity is going up. And after each little rain shower, it seems like a million weeds pop up all over my Kentucky Bluegrass lawn! What is a caring homeowner to do?

Now, if you're like me, you usually take a canister of Round-Up and give each of those dandelions a healthy squirt, but did you know that the chemicals we use to kill plants and insects around our homes can be bad for the environment? They can soak into the soil, and find their way into the bay. If we don't want all of our children swimming in toxic chemicals at Crown Beach, we're going to have to find a better way to fight weeds and nasty insects in our yards.

Fortunately, there's a simple alternative that will ensure that you never have to spray weeds or ants again! Simply have the problematic portions of your yard sealed in concrete, and those weeds will never rear their ugly seed heads. Rain water will just run harmlessly off the surface, remaining pristine until it reaches the shores of Alameda. Depending on the shape of your yard, you may also find that you've created a new place to park one of your cars. So paving your yard is a win for you, and for the planet!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Roger Rates Recent Interwebcasts

Roger's ratings of meetings initially interwebcast in the past 14 days, with the most recent shown in green:

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
Corica Have Mercy:

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
This Is an Outrage:
Regular Meeting of the Alameda City Council, January 20, 2009

Editor's Comments:

The Alameda Daily Noose and I don't much care for Council meetings, but this one didn't seem nearly as horrible as usual. Call us crazy, but it was almost as if the mayor were a completely different person.

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
So Many Things to Get Annoyed About:
Regular Meeting of the Planning Board, January 12, 2009

Editor's Comments:

The only redeeming value of this video comes at the 34-minute mark. None of the rest makes any sense whatsoever…nothing but bureaucratic gobbledygook and sanctimonious lectures from so-called planners.

Golden AcornGolden Acorn
Run-of-the-Mill Shenanigans:

Golden Acorn
Nothing Worth Complaining About:
Regular Transportation Commission, January 14, 2009

Editor's Comments:

The Alameda Daily Noose and I have watched the entire five-hour video of the January 14 Traffic Committee meeting three times now, and we are simply astounded at the utter and complete lack of things to complain about. We realize that some crazy people might consider boats to be some kind of third-rate form of transportation, but showing five straight hours of nautical pictures hardly seems like a worthy use of taxpayer dollars in these troubled times. The sooner we scuttle this wasteful Transit Board, the better.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Nightmare Becomes Reality: Squirrel-Hugging Secret Scotsman Becomes Our 44th President

Yesterday was a sad day in the Global War on Squirrels. Due to covert interference of the Bushy-Tailed kind in last November's election, the Great Island Nation of Alameda has now lost a golden opportunity to rout the Sciurine menace once and for all. Instead, we have a new president who is even more Soft on Squirrels than the last. The Alameda Daily Noose and I couldn't be bothered to watch the sham of an inauguration that ushered in this new era of Sciurine appeasement. Alameda should have learned its lesson when that sniveling Chamberlain gave Czechoslovakia to the Squirrels in 1938.

We assume that today's inauguration ceremony ended with a procession of Bagpipes, since there is no longer any need for Secret Scotsman Barack Obama to hide his true identity. The Alameda Daily Noose and I had so hoped for a last-minute miracle, perhaps in the form of staunch Squirrel opponent Miss Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin delivering a devastating flying karate kick to the lead Bagpipe, rendering the whole band harmless, and inspiring the grateful crowd to sweep her into the Oval Office on a wave of ecstatic anti-Squirrel and anti-Tartan sentiment.

Unfortunately, as of press time, we have heard no rumors of such activities at the inauguration, and so must assume that we now have a Squirrel-hugger as our president. We can only hope that he will soon stop prattling on about what he is for, so that he can get down to the serious business of telling us what he is against.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Frieda Bellows Says Drop Everything and Work on Her Plan


What's this I hear about another city-wide parade being planned for the Fourth of July? Last year was horrible, with all of those streets closed off, and people everywhere! I don't want to spend another holiday trying to drive through all of that undesirable foot traffic. The whole thing is a huge waste of our tax money.

We need to put a stop to these parade plans now, before they push our already struggling city into bankruptcy. Instead, we should have a big Fourth of July gathering, in some sort of gathering place. Maybe there could be sponsors to pay for it, or some kind of county-wide sales tax. I don't know. I mean, I'm not on the parade committee or anything, so don't ask me for a bunch of details about my plan. It's the parade committee's job to flesh all of that out for me. The important thing is that they just drop everything they've been working on so far and start working on MY plan instead, and I mean pronto.

I'm not anti-celebration, but I am for people being quieter about their celebrating, and not moving around so much while they do it. I don't want to rain on anybody's parade, I just want to stop it. Anyway, the important thing is to stop the dangerous and wasteful planning process for the annual traffic nightmare that these irresponsible people, whoever they are, call a parade.

Frieda Bellows

Monday, January 19, 2009

Gene Clipworth Wants Alameda to Immediately Terminate its Master Tree Plan


I am not anti-tree, but I AM against planting trees for the wrong reasons. We've all heard a lot about the City of Alameda's so-called Master Tree Plan, but we have to ask ourselves who is behind this plan. For that matter, who or should I say what is behind the TREES? Is that a bushy tail I see sticking out?

I was searching the google the other day when I ran across this shocking propaganda video:

It ends with a reference to an interweb sight filled with even more hateful pro-Squirrel propaganda masquerading as environmental advocacy. This, in combination with the video, constitutes absolute proof that the Squirrels are merely trying to promote tree planting in order to obtain more government-subsidized housing for themselves.

Alameda already has more than its fair share of trees. Sure, you'll hear some Squirrels complaining that their pups have to scurry off to other cities to find trees of their own, but these whiners need to realize that not every Squirrel has a right to live in Alameda. Maybe if those pups work hard and save their acorns they'll be able to afford to move back into a small "starter bush" in Alameda some day. Our government has no business interfering in the tree market by subsidizing housing for these Squirrels with their outsized senses of entitlement.

Trees are an important part of the city, and we have an alternative vision: a public tree trust. The concept behind the notion underlying this idea is that the trees belong to the People, not the Squirrels and that's all of Us not all of Them. There are many things that can be done with the trees to discourage Squirrels: limiting tree height and density, little wrought-iron fences with spikes on top, rings of sticky stuff smeared around the tree trunks, or perhaps even catapults. Of course, this won't look like the groves of trees we're used to seeing. It will look like the Alameda Tree Trust, with its own special system of anti-Squirrel defenses.

We've heard a lot about our "carbon footprint" lately, but that doesn't concern me. The kind of footprints we should REALLY be worried about is Squirrel footprints!

The city should immediately terminate the Master Tree Plan, and join with the rapidly growing numbers of Alameda folks who have signed on to this alternative vision.

Gene Clipworth

Friday, January 16, 2009

Green Living by Janet Marchant: Attracting Backyard Wildlife

This time of year, it seems like it will be forever before the next time we get to load up the car for a drive to Yosemite, and some close interaction with the great outdoors. But while you're dreaming about those summertime bear encounters, you could be enjoying the wonders of nature right here in Alameda. Did you know that wild animals can be found right here in our very own city? That's right. With a little planning and patience, you can see these adorable creatures in your own backyard.

Don't worry if you have no place to hang anything like a birdfeeder. Just scatter some seed on the ground, and you're sure to see a fluttering flock of pigeons descend in no time! These gentle, feathered friends are so trusting that you'd think they were domesticated. You can almost walk up and touch them. Don't actually touch them, however, especially if you are susceptible to Histoplasmosis.

If you are more fond of furry than feathered creatures in your backyard, try this simple trick: leave a 10-pound bag of dog food outside in a place that is easily accessible, but protected from rain. Sooner or later, some wily raccoons are sure to find the tasty treats, and thank you by spreading kibble (some of it digested) all over your yard. Raccoons are so spunky that they will even follow the scent of pet food right through a cat flap. Few things are more exciting for the backyard wildlife enthusiast than finding raccoons in the kitchen, although the hard part is getting them to leave again. Remember, raccoons are wild animals, so it can be harmful to them to become too dependent on using your microwave to thaw out the pizza pockets they take from your freezer. If that happens, they may lose their ability to hunt down their own pizza pockets in the wild.

What works for attracting raccoons is also likely to apeal to more diminutive visitors, such as Rattus norvegicus. You might think that these beady-eyed little fellows look like Squirrels without the bushy tails, but there's a world of difference between them. For example, trees are natural enemies of the poor little brown rat, since they serve as lookout towers for birds of prey in search of a rodent snack.

These are just a few examples of the fun you can have with Alameda wildlife. If you keep your eyes open, and your food sources replenished, you're likely to see even more exotic animals in your backyard!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Phyllis Clump Loves the Alameda Daily Noose and Me


You are so talented. I love to visit your interweb page, in fact I often look at it several times a week. Its great to see that pretty yellow background when I get there, but I have one complaint. Why do you have to keep changing the words and some of the pictures? I'm sure they would be fine if you'd left them the way they were when I first saw them. Can't you just let the page be instead of fiddling around with it all the time?

Phyllis Clump

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Impossible Traffic Conditions Paralyze Alameda

The completion of the last new home being built in a West Alameda subdivision has proven to be the straw that broke the camel's back. It has now become impossible for anyone to drive off of or onto the Treasured Island of Alameda. As you can see from the exclusive Alameda Daily Noose photo above, the line of cars leading to the tubes is endless. Commuters who set out for their jobs in those other cities that aren't Alameda on Monday were still waiting to get on to the freeway on Tuesday.

Many stranded commuters have given up getting to work, and are simply living in their cars. Enterprising street vendors stroll between the vehicles, selling donuts, coffee, and gasoline to keep all those motors running. The situation has grown so dire that some have suggested that people could get out of their cars and bypass the tubes and bridges altogether, perhaps utilizing some sort of watercraft. Clearly, the idea of a bunch of commuters getting out of their cars and riding in a boat to get to work is certifiably insane. That such ludicrous proposals are being floated suggests that those exhaust fumes might be making some people a bit dizzy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Innovative Business Not So Golden After All

Lately, the owner of Sugar Rush Golden Doughnuts is feeling like there's a big hole right in the middle of his business plan. Last year, when the 24-hour doughnut outlet first opened near Park Street, owner Karl Ebbs thought he'd found just the right niche. After all, where else can you get a doughnut at 3 a.m. around Park Street?

"I expected to have a fairly steady stream of customers, perhaps easing slightly during the hours when most people tend to be sleeping," Ebbs explained, shaking his head resignedly. "It's amazing how few people seem to want doughnuts in the afternoon and evening, though. Sometimes I sit all night just watching the crullers and the raised and the cakes sitting in their cases, unpurchased. I'm really starting to wish that I'd hired an employee or two so that I could sleep once in a while."

Because the 24-hour plan doesn't seem to be working out very well, Mr. Ebbs is asking the City to allow him to reduce his hours, perhaps focusing more on the morning than the evening. So far, however, the City seems to be reluctant to allow the change. Rumor has it that certain City officials and staff have grown accustomed to being able to make a doughnut run on those occasions when meetings stretch through the night and into breakfast time.

As a protest against the City's apparent lack of sympathy, Mr. Ebbs has started spray-painting his doughnuts silver. While watching Mr. Ebbs ply his spray can across a tray of chocolate glazed goodies, the Alameda Daily Noose and I noticed a customer trying to find some doughnuts whose colored sprinkles had not yet been intermingled with flecks of silver paint. She seemed a bit put off by the act of protest, even after Mr. Ebbs carefully explained its purpose to her. As she left, she pointed out that Mr. Ebbs might want to post his hours somewhere in the store if he wanted people to know they could expect to get doughnuts there 'round the clock.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Former City Council Candidate Clarifies


I didn't watch either of those interpodcasts of the City Council meetings that you rated last week, but I can see from all the acorns that they were just as bad as ever. The problem is all those darned elected officials and the "board members" that they appoint! We need to get rid of all of them. I mean every last one of the corrupt weasels.

In fact, I've gotten seven or eight phone calls just in the past week, even before your ratings came out, all suggesting that the heads of the mayor and the city council should all be served up on a platter, garnished with a sprig of tax relief and drizzled with clarified butter. I'm not sure if all of the calls came from different people or not, because after the part about the butter, all I heard on the line was heavy breathing.

I agree completely with the call for throwing all those bums out of city hall. Let's clear out the whole shebang and start over with some different council people who will work harder at not changing anything. That's right, we need to get rid of every single one of them, except I guess that one who ran with me in our throw-the-bums-out campaign that one time. He was okay. Oh, what the heck - get rid of him too! We can't take any chances, especially with people who've actually been elected to office. You can't trust any of them.

Just to clarify, I'm going to go get out a stick of butter and a saucepan right now, so look out!

Former City Council Candidate

Friday, January 9, 2009

Green Living by Janet Marchant: A Totally Organic Heating Solution

If you have your finger on the pulse of the planet, as I do, then you have undoubtedly heard that coal is making a comeback as a heating fuel. Now, you're probably saying to yourself, "Gee, I wish I could save all that money by burning coal, but I'm concerned about the effect on the environment." Well, I have some good news for you!

As anyone who's been to the grocery store lately can tell you, anything marked "organic" is wonderful and good for you and for the planet. But what does "organic" really mean? According to my trusty Webster's dictionary, "organic" means "of, relating to, or containing carbon compounds." You can imagine my surprise, then, when I looked up "coal" and found that it is "a piece of glowing carbon"! In other words, coal is totally organic, and therefore good for the planet, so the more you burn, the better.

Of course, burning coal can be a bit messy, due to the coal dust and ash, but this too has a silver lining. You and your family will have hours of enjoyment re-enacting scenes from "Mary Poppins," taking turns tending the furnace and then playing the role of that lucky, loveable Cockney chimney-sweep!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Roger Rates Recent Interwebcasts

Roger's ratings of meetings initially interwebcast in the past 7 days, with the most recent shown in green:

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
Corica Have Mercy:
Regular ARRA Meeting, January 7, 2009

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
This Is an Outrage:

Golden AcornGolden AcornGolden Acorn
So Many Things to Get Annoyed About:

Golden AcornGolden Acorn
Run-of-the-Mill Shenanigans:
Regular Meeting of the Alameda City Council, January 6, 2009

Golden Acorn
Nothing Worth Complaining About:

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Award-Winning Squirrel Is Cause for Concern, Confusion

Washington (AP) October 8 2008

The nation's highest military honor, the Gold Acorn of Freedom, was awarded to Pvt. B. Tail of the newly created Sciuridae Division of the US Armed Forces in this pool photograph released by the Pentagon Wednesday. Pvt. Tail, of the 13th Deciduous Division, 23rd Non-mechanized Powerline Climbing Regiment, II Corps based at the Ansbach garrison in Germany, infiltrated a suspected Taliban base in Afghanistan, and directed ground artillery and airstrikes against the enemy.

The results proved lethal for the enemy squirrels who were then dressed and served to Coalition soldiers from the Ukraine contingent.

Editor's Comments:

The Alameda Daily Noose and I were cleaning out our mailbag the other day, assuming we would find more new year's accolades, when we discovered the following press release stuck to the bottom of the bag by some kind of reddish viscous substance not unlike barbecue sauce. We would like to apologize on behalf of Marc Alpert of Tijuana Brass Band fame for his sloppy eating habits, which delayed our publication of his latest dispatch from the front lines of the Global War on Squirrels. We must say that we find the subject matter of his report deeply disturbing and not a little confusing. As soon-to-be-award-winning journalists, we fail to understand why a Squirrel should receive any kind of award, and most certainly not before we get what's coming to us. We have often warned that our federal government is dangerously Soft on Squirrels, and this latest development is disheartening evidence of a growing trend. The Alameda Daily Noose and I are rightfully disgusted by such sciurine appeasement. We do like the part about the Squirrel kabobs, though. They look delicious!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Scoop! of Accolades Starts 2009 Out Right

The Alameda Daily Noose and I are used to receiving a lot of praise for our journalistic excellence, but even we were pleasantly surprised by the flurry of accolades we have received in the new year. On January 3 alone, no fewer than four enthusiastic readers wrote us seven times to tell us how much they love our soon-to-be-award-winning daily noosepaper, a new record for adoration. One of these excited readers, undoubtedly a very attractive woman who makes jewelry by hand, even went so far as to ask for our telephone number, but we must inform her with a deep blush that the Alameda Daily Noose and I are already taken.

Now, the Alameda Daily Noose and I are not up on all of the latest interweb slang that the kids today are using, so we're not sure what a "lol" is, but we can only assume that it's a good thing. We are a little concerned by the fact that some readers appeared to use the word "blog" to refer to our soon-to-be-award-winning daily noosepaper. Normally we would be highly offended by the suggestion that we have anything in common with those Boring, Lame Online Gossip Shops, or B.L.O.G.S.; however, we are going to be charitable and assume that these youngsters are so new to the noose business that they simply don't understand the important, fundamental, and completely obvious differences yet. In fact, it seems that the only criticism our readers have of the Alameda Daily Noose is that there is not more of it. What these poor souls don't seem to realize is that you can never get enough soon-to-be-award-winning noose.

Monday, January 5, 2009

"Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda" Urges Rejection of "Bail-Out" of Big Baloney

Following is a press release from "Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda":

As anybody who has thrown away a soggy local "newspaper" lately knows, the city of Alameda is going to Hell in a hand-basket. Our City fire stations are apparently threatened with "brown-nosing" and the city is spending millions of dollars on the kind of fancy suits lawyers wear—yet something like $700 million has been spent over the years to "bail-out" Lunch Developers in our business districts, charged a group of elderly gentlemen and like-minded whippersnappers who got together for coffee today.

The "bail-out" is so bad that "Save Our Sandwiches! Alameda" (S.O.S.!A.), as the erstwhile Kaffeeklatsch is now known, has gone to unusual lengths to stop the practice, unveiling this hard-hitting, stylish, and exceedingly well-written press release to inform the general public about the mess.

The Alameda City Council will host a meeting about something or other at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 7, in the City Council Chambers at City Hall, Oak Street and Santa Clara Avenue. S.O.S.!A. urges all Right-Thinking Alamedans to attend the meeting and demand that the Council talk about the sandwich "bail-out" instead.

"For years, city employees have been handing their paychecks, which are funded by taxpayer money that belongs to all of us, over to local eating establishments, private interests, which can then use that money for private profits from selling sandwiches. And because these sandwiches are always eaten, we taxpayers do not even have anything to show for this egregious expenditure our hard-earned money,” said Dave Williamson of S.O.S.!A.

This press release—which has been sent to ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MTV, the WB, and the Food Network—asks Alameda citizens to "Stop the 'bail-out'" and "Protect public safety" by urging Alameda officials to reject the practice of lining the pockets of Big Baloney with taxpayer dollars.

"S.O.S.!A. estimates that over the years, there must be at least $700 million in taxpayer money that has been funneled through the salaries of city staff and into the pockets of the Lunch Developers, to subsidize the required baloney, cheese, bread and such, so they can profit from making sandwiches. Alameda taxpayers will be left footing the bill for this Baloney Bail-Out.

"We would prefer to see City employees 'brown bag it' by making sandwiches at home, rather than waste taxpayer dollars on sandwiches and put our fire stations at risk of further 'brown-nosing,'" Williamson explained.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Green Living by Janet Marchant: Ring In a Green New Year!

The sustainably farmed cork has been popped from the organic sparkling wine, the bottle has been drained and then properly recycled, and yesterday morning's headache has been treated with an all-natural homeopathic remedy. Yes, 2008 has been chucked onto the great compost pile of history, and all that's left on most people's new year's to-do list is to chuck that old calendar into the recycling bin. However, now there's an even greener option for 2009!

Why go out and buy a whole new calendar when you can simply re-use your 2008 calendar? All you have to do is cross out the "2008" and write in "2009"! Now, I'm sure that some astute readers out there have spotted one little flaw in this plan. That's right, 2008 was a so-called leap year, which means that it had one more day than 2009 will have. Fortunately, there's an easy solution: Simply cut the square for "February 29" out of your 2008 calendar and stash it in a kitchen drawer, where you'll be able to find it and use it the next time a "leap year" comes around. This happens every time the year is divisible by 4, except for those times when it doesn't, such as in 1900, except for when it does anyway, such as in 2000.

Other than the minor complication of "leap years," I can't think of a single reason why you can't keep re-using that 2008 calendar again and again. I'm sure you will never grow tired of those same twelve cute pictures of puppies, kittens, or flowers that made you fall in love with the calendar in the first place.

So, my fellow planet-savers, here's wishing you a wonderfully green 2009!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Grumpy Noose Year!

The Alameda Daily Noose and I don't love making predictions nearly as much as we love rubbing people's faces in them when they come true, which they invariably do. With that in mind, here is our official, exclusive list of predictions for 2009:

  1. Someone will make a plan to build something or accomplish some task, the Alameda Daily Noose and I will condemn it in no uncertain terms, and then, not everything will go according to said plan, thereby proving to all Right-Thinking Alamedans that so-called planning is nothing but a huge waste of time.
  2. A steady increase in the comings and goings of airships will create a sort of Zeppelin traffic Looney Tunes, or perhaps even a Zeppelin traffic Merrie Melodies, in the general vicinity of the Super-Mega-Monster-Plex That Everyone Hates.
  3. Our new president, Barack Obama, will be tested early in his first term. As a Secret Scotsman who is also certifiably Soft on Squirrels, he will cave in to clandestine pressure and fail to allow U.N. inspectors to verify that Scotland's Bagpipe program is, in fact, being used for "peaceful musical purposes," as the devious Scots claim.
  4. Blitz Donnerwetter's weather predictions will be proved more or less correct an astonishingly high 50% of the time.
  5. Our loyal newshound, Scoop, will finally catch one of those pesky Squirrels that taunt him so. Either that, or he will finally catch one of those pesky young skateboard punks who pass dangerously close to our lawn every single school day.
  6. A publication considered an arbiter of style and good taste will declare that lists of exactly ten items are most definitely "out" for 2009, and that six is "the new ten."
Well, there you have it. Please write these predictions down for future reference, and start thinking about whether you prefer the taste of crow or the taste of your own hat!