Looking Back at 2008: The Ecstasy and the Irony
This is not a look back at disgraced Sheriff Mike Carona, the Little Sheriff, the Debs, the Little Debbie Snack, the Freeway Complex Fire, Rick Warren, Wiley Drake, any lantern-jawed preacher with the last name of Schuller, pedo-priests, the 241 toll road extension, Proposition 8, fluctuating gasoline prices, the mortgage meltdown or the havoc that phenomenon wreaked. No, these are 15 stories from 2008 that may have fallen through the cracks were it not for the wonders of online archives and slow news cycles.
2) Mensa escapee Dana Welch was arrested on May 22 for allegedly pointing a laser pointer at three commercial jets and a police helicopter. When asked why he did it, the 36-year-old
3) A member of the Scottish Parliament in July tried to get
4) Retired NFL placekicker Tony Zendejas was arrested in July on several counts in connection with the alleged drugging and raping of a woman at his San Dimas sports bar and Mexican restaurant. Ironically, the
5) The Huntington Beach City Council voted unanimously in August to add seven cameras on the pier so Hollister clothing can beam "surf culture" images into their stores across the nation. Ironically, the street preacher next to the pier now has his crazy rants interrupted by women asking if their butts look too big in their bikinis.
6) The self-titled debut of Japanese Motors, featuring the unsurpassed greatness of Alex Knost, dropped this year. Ironically, I don't know who the hell Japanese Motors and Alex Knost are.
7) While touring a Beijing,
8) Huntington Beach Police in September had to give back to 52-year-old trade show decorator Jim Spray the four ounces of pot and "chunk of hash" he had a doctor's note to possess for pain from a herniated disc. The HBPD already knew the drill; under court order in April they returned another compassionaite user's 30 grams of higher-end purple urkel and smoking pipes. Ironically, this now makes HBPD the county's top pot distributor.
9) Orange County Superior Court Judge Sheila Fell ruled in September that nude sunbathers at San Onofre State Beach's Trail 6 can only be cited for violating public decency laws if a private citizen complains--in essence upholding a look-the-other-way policy that had been in effect since 1979. Ironically, if you've seen the nudists who flock there you'd look the other way, too.
10) The Anaheim Angels of Los Angeles, or whatever they are called, end the season with 100 wins and the American League West crown before losing a playoff series (to Boston). Then, in the off season, the Halos lose Frankie "K-Rod" Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira. Ironically, none of this wipes the blank expression off manager Mike Scioscia's face.
11) An industry consultant tells Forbes magazine that
12) The Orange County Register and Los Angeles Times/Orange County edition cap a year of consistent staff reductions with Draconian cuts in October. Ironically, we at the Weekly take devilish delight in this ... until our own layoffs this week (sniff-sniff).
14) While O.J. Simpson was off getting imprisoned (finally), the late Johnnie Cochran's law firm was retained in November by the family of a man wrongfully shot to death by Anaheim police in his front yard. Ironically, the if-the-mistakenly-fired-bullet-don't-fit-you-must-acquit defense probably won't work. Then again, these are OC courts ...
15) The American Civil Liberties Union sued the city of