One Hell of a News Week
February 18, 2013

As you walk into the cozy little newsroom at KNCO Radio, there is a rather small standard definition television mounted in the upper left corner. It is usually tuned to CNN with the sound down, and at noontime we check out the local stations to see what stories they lead with in their newscasts. This week, the volume was up on many occasions, and when people in the news business are watching, you know there is something going on.

Tuesday afternoon was the most compelling, when the manhunt for Christopher Dorner was close to reaching its conclusion. The fiery end came after I had left to do a basketball game, but the sound on the television was up, and people kept coming in to check on the latest throughout the day. Many, including myself, feared that the end wasnít going to be pleasant. Not necessarily for Dorner, but that he might take several people with him. And to think he was hiding just yards away from the police command post the whole time.

Thursday marked the end of the Carnival ĎCruise from Hellí, and as we were watching the repeated video of passengers in a human formation spelling out the word Ďhelpí, I couldnít help but think there was a bigger disaster to come. I was afraid when the ship finally got to Mobile, 4200 passengers would trample each other while trying to disembark. Fortunately, that didnít happen, but how unbelievable was it when a bus carrying some of those passengers to New Orleans broke down? The lawsuits have begun, but Carnival representatives should have been waiting to greet the passengers, with 100-thousand dollar checks for everyone.

I didnít believe the story about Oscar Pistorius when I first read it from our news service on Thursday. Just a week earlier, I had interviewed a local paralympic snowboarder, who will be off to Sochi, Russia for a World Cup event at the end of the month. We didnít discuss Pistorius, but Evan Strong, who has one prosthetic leg, could easily be compared to the South African in terms of bravery and courage. This still hasnít been verified, but it is believed that Pistorius is a gun nut, and maybe a bit paranoid, and shot his girlfriend by accident. Truth or not, itís something to remember if you are going to keep guns in the house.

And Friday was the double-whammy. We find out that the asteroid missed us, but a meteorite crashed down in Russia, injuring over 1000 people, breaking glass, and damaging the town of Chelyabinsk. We were told that the two were unrelated, but I find that hard to believe. I think I have a better chance of winning the lottery every day for a month, than two different cosmic events of that magnitude occurring on the same day.

Add the State of the Union address, Marco Rubioís drink-of-water response, and the upcoming Ďsequesterí, and you have quite a week. And thatís not to mention the local news.

Sports Roundup: NBA All-Star Saturday was extremely weak this year, instead of just being moderately boring. The Slam Dunk contest has got to go, and no one has ever heard of these guys. I didnít even remember Jeremy Evans, who was runner up this year, and won the thing last season. Get the superstars to participate, or scrap it. The game itself was pretty decent. No one played defense, but no one ever does.

I was listening to the player introductions Sunday, and Indiana Pacers forward Paul George was announced as being from Palmdale, California. It turns out he went to Pete Knight High School (which didnít exist when I was a kid), before moving on to Fresno State.

Former Dodgers catcher Mike Piazza has written a book, and in it, he goes after no other than Vin Scully. Piazza blames an interview with Scully as the reason fans in Los Angeles turned against him. Piazza says Scully Ďcrushed himí about making an ultimatum about a contract extension in 1998. KTLA provided the video of the interview on its website, and Scully asked Piazza exactly three questions about the contract before moving on to lighter topics. Advice for Piazza. If you donít want fans to boo you, donít call out who Charley Steiner calls the Patron Saint of Baseball.

Pre-Oscars: I just wanted to go on the record before Sunday's Academy Awards to say I think host Seth MacFarlane will do a good job, but is an unusual choice. Most of the older movie-going crowd (and I am guessing many Academy members) don't even know who he is. It might have been better if the Family Guy creator hosted the Emmys or Golden Globes before having to follow in the footsteps of Billy Crystal.

I know there isnít an Academy Award for Worst Picture, but if there was, itís possible that our 16th President could be involved in both. Lincoln could win Best Picture, and Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter could get Worst. Guess which one of the two movies Iíve actually seen?

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