Diary of a Mad County

SATURDAY, JUNE 8 Drunken drivers plow cars into trees, center dividers and, unfortunately, other cars. John Ferrellbecomes the unluckiest of all just after 1 a.m. when he's—allegedly—zooming along Beach Boulevard at about 65 mph before slamming into a police car . . . that's stopped at a red light. Westminster Police Sergeant Jack Davidson goes to UC Irvine Medical Center with a concussion and back injuries, while Ferrell goes to Western Medical Center-Anaheim for treatment of unspecified injuries and arrest on suspicion of felony drunken driving. It's the day before Ferrell's 34th birthday, the Los Angeles Times reports. A good lawyer would make a fine present.

Illustration by Bob Aul SUNDAY, JUNE 9 Garden Grove police arrest one Bolsa Grande High School student today and three more June 10 in connection with the slaying of 14-year-old Edward Fernandez, who was gunned down the preceding weekend after taking a cab ride home. Police, city officials and the mainstream media do not link the crime to taxis but to cybercafés. Indeed, based on near-daily coverage by the dailies, you'd think Tony Sopranohad changed the name of the Bada Bing! to I.C.E. Internet Cafe (which is where the cab picked up Fernandez) or PC Cafe (outside of which a 20-year-old was stabbed to death in December), both in Garden Grove. Everyone's jumping on the regulate-the-hell-outta-cybercafés bandwagon, but in the six months between those two slayings THAT DID NOT OCCUR INSIDE CYBERCAFÉS, far more Orange Countians have died in murder-suicides in homes (including three more in Lake Forest on June 10), and no one's talking about regulating those.
Illustration by Bob Aul
MONDAY, JUNE 10 Costa Mesa-based skateboarding company Silver Starimmediately pulls its logo using lightning bolts to represent its initials after three students pass out fliers at Newport Harbor High School saying the "SS" is similar to a Nazi hate symbol. (History buffs will recall the SS was Adolph Hitler's secret police force.) Students Eric Weller, Brandon Marshall and Wes Pohlmann also single out Costa Mesa clothier Johnny Suede and Santa Cruz skateboard company Independent for iron cross logos the kids find Naziesque. Independent's president tells the Newport Beach/Costa Mesa Daily Pilot that its logo is based on the "Lord's Cross" on Pope John Paul II's robe, while Johnny Suede says his cross is just for looks. Where some see fashion, others see fascism. TUESDAY, JUNE 11 The Irvine City Council gives final approval to the development of 12,350 homes on 7,700 acres of Irvine Co. land in the so-called Northern Sphere. The project is expected to draw about 35,000 new residents, which would make it about the same population as San Juan Capistrano, without all that annoying charm and history.
Illustration by Bob Aul
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12 U.S. Representative Christopher Cox (R-Newport Beach), who has been trying since 1993 to kill the estate tax as part of the Republican Congress' Contract With Wealthy America, suffers another setback when the Senate falls six votes short of the 60 needed to send the bill to Dubya's waiting pen. Cox and his GOP cohorts dishonestly pass off the "death tax" as a levy affecting all Americans, even though it's only charged on estates valued at more than $1 million. His death tax bill is dead for at least another year. THURSDAY, JUNE 13 UC Irvine announces that researchers from the university and Japan have determined that earwax production is controlled by a gene linked to a rare movement disorder. Further, exploring that genetic relationship may help researchers prevent cancer and excessive body odor. We don't pretend to understand any of this, but they're really grossing us out. Still, in the name of research, we feel duty bound to mail UCI our extensive collection of used Q-Tips and sweat-stained wifebeaters. FRIDAY, JUNE 14 During an airport-security discussion on former Assemblywoman Marilyn Brewer's local cable-access program, UC Irvine poli-sci guy (and sometime Weekly contributor) Mark Petraccamentions how often pretty young women are pulled out of checkpoints and forced to endure extensive searches of their shapely persons. Pretty but not exactly young Republican political consultant Eileen Padberg expresses shock over having been searched twice since Sept. 11. Padberg is apparently oblivious to Attorney General John Ashcroft's recent bra-bomb alert.
Illustration by Bob Aul
SATURDAY, JUNE 15 We clean out our kitchen pantry to make space for the latest product from the good folks at Heinz: chocolate French fries. Funky Fries also come in cinnamon sugar and blue French fries. Marketing them will be a snap. Just riff off the classic Reese's Peanut Butter Cup commercial, in which one guy will say, "Hey, you got chocolate on my French fry," while the other will reply, "Well, you dipped your French fry in my chocolate." Packing double the fat and sodium of regular fries, Funky Fries perfectly complement today's alarming childhood-obesity rates. Ask for them by name! SUNDAY, JUNE 16 On the eve of the 30th anniversary of the Watergate break-in, reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein appear on CBS' Face the Nation to talk about Orange County favorite son Richard Nixon's unfinest hour. Or hours, according to Woodstein, who dispute the notion that the break-in and cover-up were the Dick's only crimes, born out of a necessity to fend off liberal journalists and Vietnam War critics. They contend Nixon's repeated illegal use of the FBI, the IRS, other government agencies and secret slush funds to not just defeat but also "rub out" his enemies was a far worse transgression than Watergate.
Illustration by Bob Aul
MONDAY, JUNE 17 On the 30th anniversary of the Watergate break-in, the Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace in Yorba Linda invites visitors to its Watergate gallery that foists the notion that the break-in and cover-up were the Dick's only crimes, born out of a necessity to fend off liberal journalists and Vietnam War critics.


SATURDAY, JUNE 15: Lizardman at the Wienie Roast.

Photo by Jeanne Rice