A CLOCKWORK ORANGE


Posted Aug. 4
MAMA'S GOT A SQUEEZEOC BOX
SqueezeOC, the Orange County Register's supposedly faux-alternative weekly, designed to strip you dear readers and advertisers away from you-know-who, is set to launch Aug. 18, according to their brand-spankin' new website www.squeezeoc.com. Their site even features a photo of--drum roll, puh-leeze--an orange. 'Cause this is ORANGE County. Get it? And "squeeze" is in their name and it's also something you do to an orange. Get it? Get it? No? Me neither.


LINK OF THE DAY
Hell, maybe the year:
www.sweetjesusIhatebilloreilly.com


BABY YOU CAN'T DRIVE MY CAR
If someone tries to tell you there is no market for gas-electric hybrids (as they previously tried to do with all-electrics; see Dude, Where's My Electric Car?), you have my permission to pass along my wife's recent car-leasing experience. Explaining that she wants fuel economy but isn't ready to step down from her mom van to a sedan, my wife zeroed in on a Toyota SUV hybrid. So we went to our local dealership, where there was only one hybrid on the lot: an SUV . . . that had already been sold. Since the owner hadn't yet picked it up, we could look at it, we just couldn't test drive it. How about a Prius? All gone. They did have another SUV hybrid arriving a couple days later that we might be able to test drive, but there was a good chance that, too, would be sold over the phone before it even got there. Now, here's the funny thing we discovered about Toyota hybrids: because demand is so high and they're just flying off the lots, the dealers load them with extras (sunroofs! chrome wheels! 6-cd changer players!). So, having found out what the retail price was for the stripped-down version before arriving, we looked at a sticker price that was at least $10,000 more because of all the (unnecessary) goodies. The salesman's explanation was pretty much "Why do we do that? Because we can." That proved too rich for our blood. My wife wound up leasing the same SUV, only in the stripped down, 4-cyclinder, non-hybrid model, because it fit our budget. It still gets better gas mileage than our family's other cars (even the tiny '93 Nissan Sentra). Lo and behold, on Aug. 4, Toyota announced plans for 10 new hybrids, while also inviting all other automakers to an eco-summit on global warming and better fuel efficiency standards in future cars. Toyota's goal is to sell 1 million hybrids annually worldwide, which means most will wind up on California's roads (the No. 1 Toyota sales territory worldwide, our salesman boasted). So, maybe by the time our SUV non-hybrid's lease is up, we can finally get that hybrid. Without all the goodies.


REVENGE OF THE 909
Oh, we're so smug here in OC, er, excuse me: THE O.C., BITCH! But just think of those poor dirtbags in the 909 with their trailers on blocks and single tooths and next-door meth labs exploding in the night. Those sorry bastards. Well, now it turns out they have something to crow about. An economist claims you're better off living in the 909--something they call the Inland Empire (HAH!)--than just about anywhere, and certainly much more better off than living here. You read that right, Poncho, here, paradise, the place that dreams and crappy teen soap operas and reality shows are made of. The economist attributes this to something he calls--no shit--"The Dirt Theory." Please stop laughing. Naturally, if it was reported in the august Fontana Herald News, it must be true.


CORRECTIONAL DEPARTMENT
We here at the Weekly apologize for our Aug. 3 It's News to Us web posting titled "20 Marines dead in 20 days in Iraq." Turns out that was erroneous. Upon further review, that should have read: 21 MARINES DEAD IN 2 DAYS!!! We apologize for any inconvenience our error caused to anyone other than the Bush White House.


HAVE GUN, WILL BRANDISH
Jesus Christ, do they toss out Orange County Sheriff's Department badges and guns like Chickletts on a TJ street corner or what? I mean, I've encountered some lunkheads on our region's many fine muni golf courses, and tempers do occasionally flare, such as the time I went ahead and hit thinking there was no way I'd reach the green where a foursome was putting, only to accidentally hit a little old Asian woman in the arm. She rightly yelled at me and waved her putter in my face, but it's not like she whipped out a badge, pulled a pistol and threatened to "kill" me like Sheriff Mike Carona's buddy just did. You know, for "America's Sheriff," this Carona fellow sure surrounds himself with some peaches. Maybe that's how he's solving Orange County's chronic jail overcrowding: just cutting cretins loose and handing them guns and badges on the way out. Background checks? We don't need no stinkin' background checks. If someone can't unseat Sheriff Capone in the next election, this here county is even more royally fucked up than I thought possible.


WANTED: ADVICE
Okay, I just did something really stupid: I hadn't had strong enough coffee before driving in to work, which, as you know, in the past has led me to forget my backpack, show up wearing mismatched socks plow my '74 Caddy through those schoolchildren in the crosswalk. But today took the urinal cake: after I sat down to do my, ahem, morning business in the public restroom here at Weekly HQ, I discovered that I had forgotten to put down the sanitary paper seat cover. First off, who knew those paperless seats were so cold? Second, as I sat there a few seconds, I couldn't decide if it was better to stop midway through, erm, dropping the boys off in the pool and grabbing the seat cover, or if I'd already potentially infected myself. I went with the latter, but should you know anything about this please email me at mcoker@ocweekly.com because it's really been on my mind--especially since the cottage cheese-looking stuff started coming out with my pee.

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