In my teenage years my parents decided to move to Los Angeles.
Having seen the beautiful beaches of Santa Barbara and the luscious trees of Beverly Hills in soap operas, I was expecting to be blown away by California's nature.
Like bloodthirsty spectators at the Colosseum in ancient Rome, many Americans today seek their jollies through carnage and depravity. But instead of lions and slaves going at it for the crowds, now it's violence and titillation-steeped virtual reality video games.
One new "adventure" game that has captured the retail marketplace is Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto (GTA) IV. A financial blockbuster, it has raked in a whopping $500 million in its first week alone.
"Hillary has always been a liar - why all the fuss about her sniper kerfuffle?"
Family men are action heroes. We face a horrible, treacherous nemesis, far worse than other super heroes must face.
We must stand up against the dreaded Domestic Gremlin, a creature not seen, but one that endangers our precious domesticated lifestyle, causing kitchen appliances to malfunction, allowing critters and other unsightly creatures to enter wife- and kid-inhabited living quarters.
Did you buy into an older, established neighborhood in the belief that you would be safe from bulldozers and houses abandoned to subprime mortgages? Did you check the city zoning ordinances and thought you knew what was planned for this neighborhood? Or have you just lived there for 20 or so years in the belief that life would go on as it had been planned when you moved in?
The comedian Yakov Smirnov once said, "In America, its always easy to find party. In Soviet Union, Party always finds you."
Last Friday was a rough one. I'm in the landscape business - married to the housing industry - and as most know, housing isn't the cheeriest spot in the economy right now. It's akin to tap dancing atop a minefield. There's stress, and then more stress - like a "super-unglue" against healthy living.
So, limping home from work, I looked forward to soul-replenishing relaxation with Carrie. We'd light up the fireplace. Pop open the Sauvignon Blanc. And turn on reruns of the BBC series "As Time Goes By."
Most parents will recognize a common excuse used in childhood: "Johnny told me to do it." And the parents' rebuttal, "If Johnny told you to jump off a cliff, would you do it?" This lesson is usually lost on the young child, but it manages to sleep within his consciousness until he is old enough to understand its wisdom.
Now that the talking heads on 24/7 news outlets have a new victim to slay - Barack Obama via his relationship with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright - people are suddenly questioning the patriotism of Wright and the common sense of Obama. Without ...
It's no secret that Ronald Reagan is my hero. For as long as I can remember, I have appreciated the ideals of the conservative movement, and I sincerely believe that if more voters my age (the coveted Gen-Xers) truly understood those values and the long-term implications of the policies generated by those positions, more would support conservative causes and candidates.
Puls•kamp•er•ie –noun 1. the ability to make the people believe you addressed a problem while actually doing nothing. 2. actions taken by a group of people to prevent the true nature of their endeavors from escaping their group, or becoming well know to the public: "The staff members used Puskamperie to keep the facts from reaching the newspapers."
What makes a mother feel beautiful? A pre-Mother's Day TV commercial promoting (what else?) Mother's Day commercialism is currently attempting to answer that question. In doing so, that particular jewelry store ad is venturing into some potentially dangerous psychological territory.
In the commercial, a pretty, smiling woman is seen with her two little girls. They have just polished their Mommy's nails. Not a perfect job, but it's the thought, right?
'What do you want for Mother's Day?" I asked my wife earlier this week. "I don't need anything," she said. "Do you want to do something for Mother's Day?" I asked. "Anything you want to do, we'll do it."
There is not a day that goes by when I do not think about the one person who made all the difference in my life. And at this time of year, the days seem to be strung together by a seamless, bittersweet preoccupation with yesterday. "Bitter" because death brings the weight of days lost; "sweet" because it somehow refines yesterday's memories to help one see just how good things really were. Those memories then become life's joys and lessons that cannot be spoken of enough, and that are held quietly in the heart.
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station opened its doors on May 8, 1972, with Sheriff Coffeen officiating at the ceremony. Explorer Scouts conducted tours of the station and included demonstrations of computerized and expanded traffic record systems. Copies of historic dockets and cases dating back to the early 1900s were on display.
Now here we are in 2008, still in the same building. Though the laws and method of operations have changed to fit our current everyday problems and rising crime, our deputies are better trained and equipped to handle whatever comes their way.
There are two propositions on your June ballot that you will probably need some background on in order to cast an informed vote. These are Propositions 98 and 99.
Proposition 98 is the California Property Owners and Farmland Protection Act, and Proposition 99 is the Homeowners Protection Act. The purpose of both ballot measures is to amend current eminent domain laws to restrict government's use of eminent domain authority.
These days, homework is not only difficult, it's time-consuming. It is not uncommon for students to have three hours or more of homework each and every night.
I don't know who is responsible for this situation, nor do I know if it can be corrected, but I do feel like no one is seeing the reality of this.
I met up with Lee Rogers for lunch last week at the Tournament Players Club restaurant in Valencia. The Democratic candidate running to replace Howard "Buck" McKeon in this year's election, Lee, many believe, is likely to be the new representative for our district.
Is anyone else tired of the barrage of ad hominem attacks, conspiracy theories, ginned-up scandals and false equivalencies coming from the right side of the political spectrum?
No matter who you are or where you live or what you drive or whether you thought "The English Patient" or "Anchorman 2" the funnier movie, it is time to take a stand on plastic bread. Here's a hint: most of us are against it.
Santa Clarita residents are enjoying one of the warmest winters on record, which means there are more opportunities than ever to get outdoors and enjoy our local bike trails.
"Hear, my son, your father's instruction
Elections have consequences. It's a phrase we often hear. Getting the right people in office to represent us is a critical function of our citizen-led government.
Working to recruit new businesses to the Santa Clarita Valley, I come across a lot of misconceptions about our valley.
Most folks understand that the tax policies of the past 30 years have created a great wealth disparity in the United States.
Republicans think they get unfairly labeled as the party of the wealthy, a party that tricks working-class voters into voting against their own economic self-interest by exploiting cultural wedge issues.
Punxsutawney Phil must be stopped. The lovable little groundhog must be stopped.
I believe the Republican Party's psychic break happened the moment their "compassionate conservative" economic philosophy melted the world's economy. President George W. Bush, the champion of deregulation, bailed out the banks and then offered: "I've abandoned free market principles to save the free market system."
Today millions around the world will gather with jersey-clad friends and family to eat and cheer their way through the Super Bowl. This championship of professional football in America has been the darling of the sports media for several weeks now, and finally the hoopla will give way to actual athletic competition.
As a principal, father, and member of the City Council, I can tell you firsthand that environment and behavior go hand in hand. If we want the best students, we must provide an environment that supports learning, connectivity with quality educators and opportunities to study.