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The Farsider

April 24, 2014

 

Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher <bilmat@comcast.net>
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster <leroypyle@sjpba.net>

 

The Farsider is an independent publication that is not affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or its membership.


 

PENSION NEWS

Scott Herhold's column from today's paper was all we could find about the pension issue...

 Taking Moral Ground in Pension War

 By Scott Herhold <sherhold@mercurynews.com>

 

Mercury News — April 24, 2014

Whenever I think about the fractious war over pensions at San Jose City Hall, particularly for cops and firefighters, I try to divide the argument into the practical and the moral.

On the practical side, the cops and firefighters are winning. They won the bulk of their case in court against Mayor Chuck Reed’s Measure B. And the city is finding it hard to hold new recruits. On the moral side, it’s hard to say anyone retiring with a 90 percent pension after 30 years, plus a guaranteed 3 percent annual cost-of-living allowance, has the upper hand. That’s why the cops have focused on the disability clause in Measure B, arguing that it cheats officers injured on the job. On this, they can claim stronger moral ground.

My view on all this is heavily influenced by personal experience. You see, a long time ago, as a senior in college, I found myself in a situation not unlike that of the paladins of law enforcement today.

At Yale, where I was a scholarship student between 1967-1971, the custom for freshmen on financial aid was to work 12 to 13 hours a week in the dining halls, setting tables and busing dishes. I didn’t mind this. In fact, I was good at it.

After that first year, things got easier. You became a “master’s aide,” which meant you worked in the library, did office work and helped out at events put on by the residential college master.

A sinecure

By the time I was a senior, I worked only one hour a week in the library in exchange for my $650 yearly pay (about $3,000 today). As the chief aide, my only real duty was filling out the schedules. I should have known that this situation was too sweet to survive. Our college master, Professor Frei, acting on a complaint by younger aides, called me in to explain.

I pointed out what was true — that we had suffered as freshmen and gotten a better deal as upperclassmen because of our pains.

If we had a sinecure, it was no more a sinecure than our predecessors had enjoyed — which those carping underclassmen would see one day if they would only shut up. Professor Frei, who taught religion, shook his head and said, “Scott, you don’t really believe that, do you?” I was forced to make the schedules more balanced. The upperclassmen had to work more. I wound up doing a full four hours — oh the inequity of it — each week. My vested rights were quashed.

Outrage

 At the time, I was outraged at Professor Frei’s inquiry. Over the years, I have come to see that he was right. Whatever the precedent, the situation had gotten out of whack.

Of course, pensions are different from my senior scam. But the memory shapes my view of today’s battles. If I were a cop, I’d be outraged if someone tried to reduce a pension promise.

 I would summon all the arguments I could to point to what other departments were doing — and what sacrifices I had made over a career. And I’d make the practical argument that folks would leave.

 But deep down, I think I’d know that I wasn’t winning the moral argument, not when most people have to depend on a 401(k) or much lesser reward in retirement. Not when other city workers get a significantly less sweet deal.

 Professor Frei took that easy assurance away from me forever.
 

  

POA UPDATES

We're not sure why this NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit clip from April 18th wasn't sent out by the POA as a Membership Alert, or perhaps it was and we missed it. Whatever the case, it doesn't provide much in the way of good will toward the men and women pushing the blue and white beat cars around the City.

 

 <http://tinyurl.com/l2rvqbc>

 
 

THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF SAN JOSE AND THE S.J.P.D.

 San Jose's one-person civilian review board is in the news again airing SJPD's dirty laundry...

Auditor Urges Firing of 2 Cops

—Report says officers lied during investigation about sexual incidents—

 By Mike Rosenberg <mrosenberg@mercurynews.com>

Mercury News — April 19, 2014

 SAN JOSE — Two San Jose police officers who had sex in questionable circumstances should be fired for lying to internal affairs investigators about various acts of misconduct, the city’s police auditor says in a new report.

 In her annual review of the San Jose Police Department, retired Judge LaDoris Cordell also found fault in about a dozen internal affairs investigations that cleared officers from allegations that they improperly used force. Still, the report concludes the vast majority of the police force and its internal affairs unit are performing well.

 

Cordell took issue with two unnamed officers who the police department’s internal affairs unit said it examined for alleged criminal and policy violations, only to be caught lying during the investigation. They received suspensions that lasted about one month — the only suspensions the department handed out in either 2012 or 2013.

 But many of the departments the auditor’s office surveyed said they fire cops for lying to detectives and that should be San Jose’s policy, too, she said.

 Most (other departments) say, ‘you lie, you die. You’re useless, why would we keep you?’” Cordell said in an interview Friday. “That’s See REPORT , Page 4

 “Most (other departments) say, ‘you lie, you die. You’re useless, why would we keep you?’ That’s the whole integrity of your department — it depends on the honesty of those wearing badges and having guns.”

One of the two officers in question was working a secondary job at a local undisclosed school, where he often broke policy by wearing a “San Jose Police” windbreaker and a polo shirt that had another officer’s name and badge number on it, the IA team found. He also often failed to report his hours working at the school.

Once, he had sex with a woman at the school while he was supposed to be working there, which ultimately led the woman to allege the officer sexually assaulted her, according to the report. The report said the officer lied to IA detectives during their criminal investigation. Those results were not made public by the police department and not known by the auditor.

 In the other case, a different officer often secretly went home while he was supposed to be on duty and had sex with a woman while in his uniform — both department violations. He also lied in his IA interview, according to the report.

 Neither a police department spokeswoman nor the president of the police officer’s union returned messages seeking comment.

 The report’s other main findings involved officers using weapons, takedowns or other uses of force on suspects. The auditor found that in 2012 and 2013, people lodged 275 complaints against cops, accusing them of improperly using force. The department, however, determined every complaint was either bogus or represented a justified use of force. The auditor’s office reviewed about half of those recent allegations and determined about 9 percent of the IA investigations were not thorough enough for the department to know whether use of force was warranted. “I think it’s worthy of discussion,” said Cordell.

 Most of the other violations outlined in the report involved officers failing to file police reports, using improper language to the public or speeding through streets in their cruisers when there wasn’t an emergency.
 

• • • • •
 

 The City had better hope that qualified police candidates are not reading the articles that have been appearing in the Mercury News. In addition to the one above, here is a story that can be interpreted as insinuating that good cops are covering for bad cops. And of course, the paper had to give LaDoris Cordell the last word...

 Cop Complaints Against Fellow Officers Decline

 —Drop comes as residents file more misconduct grievances—

 By Mike Rosenberg <mrosenberg@mercurynews.com>

Mercury News — April 22, 2014

 SAN JOSE — Even as community complaints against San Jose police officers rise, cops have almost entirely stopped the practice of tipping off their superiors to misbehaving colleagues — resulting in far fewer officers being punished.

New figures from Chief Larry Esquivel show that compared with a few years ago, the department last year launched 83 percent fewer investigations into Police Department employees based on evidence submitted by fellow officers. Those complaints are key in helping San Jose determine whether an officer needs to be disciplined or trained, yet last year only 1 percent of the police force was investigated based on allegations from colleagues.

 “It’s very troubling, and I hope that the chief would have an explanation for this at next week’s meeting” when the City Council discusses the new figures, Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen said.

Police say it’s possible the number of complaints is down because cops are simply behaving better. They point to new training programs that may have helped officers’ conduct. Yet in allegations ranging from improper force to rude language, residents filed more misconduct complaints against the police force last year than at any point in the past four years.

The internal affairs unit, under the direction of the chief, emphasized it looks into all complaints cops submit about their fellow officers.

“From an IA point of view, we’re not sure what’s causing the decreases,” said Lt. Loyd Kinsworthy, the internal affairs commander.

South Bay civil rights group, however, expressed concern that cops may be ignoring behavior they once reported.

“The last thing you want, particularly for a Police Department, is officers protecting bad behavior and bad actors,” said Raj Jayadev, coordinator for the Silicon Valley De-Bug community group, which has criticized the Police Department. “That’s the point where really it becomes a danger to the community.”

Some in the department, speaking on background, said the police force is now so short-staffed that supervisors — long the main source for evidence on misbehaving officers — no longer have time for such responsibilities as they focus on more pressing day-to-day issues.

The statistics mirror an overall trend of declining investigations at the department, which has seen the number of arrests and the percentage of crimes that are investigated drop in half in the past half-decade, even as crime has increased. At the same time, the number of officers has dipped from about 1,400 to 1,000 in the past decade as the city struggles to afford its cops, and officers leave for better-paying cities after pension cuts voters approved in 2012.

The internal affairs team must investigate all complaints about officers, dispatchers and other police employees. But the allegations that originate with officers are especially key because about three-quarters of those complaints are ultimately confirmed and lead to punishment or counseling.

In 2010, following similar numbers from 2009, internal affairs acted on tips from its own department to initiate 84 administrative investigations, covering 118 allegations of misconduct from police employees, mainly officers. After steady decreases in 2011 and 2012, last year the department initiated just 13 investigations covering 16 allegations of misconduct.

As a result, the department went from launching nearly seven officer-initiated investigations per month to about one per month.

Most of the officers who violated department policy for a range of administrative infractions typically received training or counseling, or a short suspension. Most offenses fell into two categories — conduct unbecoming of an officer and violating police procedure — but Esquivel’s report does not spell out specific acts of misconduct.

Some complaints are more serious, however. From 2009 to 2012, four to six police employees per year were fired after officer-initiated investigations. But no one was terminated last year.

In all, the number of officers punished from investigations stemming from officer tips plummeted 61 percent last year compared with 2009 and 2010. The reporting of the figures didn’t begin until summer 2008.

Police union head Sgt. Jim Unland said he views the plummeting investigation numbers as a positive development. “It is a testament to the dedication and professionalism of our remaining officers that the number of department-initiated complaints has declined so dramatically,” Unland said in a statement.

But retired Judge LaDoris Cordell, the city’s independent police auditor, said she expects the council to grill police brass at the April 29 meeting over why the officer-initiated IA investigations have plummeted — though she, too, did not have an explanation.

“Why is there this dramatic drop?” she asked.

 
 

WEEKLY POLL
 
   

Last Week's Poll Results
 

 

 For the most recent Rasmussen Reports releases, click here:

<http://www.rasmussenreports.com/older_content/home/top_stories/most_recent_articles>

  
 

MAIL CALL

 April 21st

Hi Bill,

Back from Guatemala after the 12-day Rotaplast mission, during which the surgeons performed corrective surgeries on 118 children, some as young a five months, and six adults. All suffered from cleft lips, cleft pallets or other facial disfigurements. Attached is a photo of two young recipients of cleft pallet repairs just a few days after surgery, and me, trying to figure out how I'll get up off the floor.

Seriously though I want to publicly thank those retired officers who helped make the mission possible by their financial support. I also want to again acknowledge the generous support of of Sandra Dunning-Erickson for her donation of $1,000 in honor of her late husband, Officer Anton "Rich" Erickson. And thank you Bill and Leroy for making retired officers aware of the Rotaplast missions through your weekly newsletter.

To see a short video on the mission, go to www.YouTube.com and search, "Guatemala Rotaplast 2014." I believe that even the tough shells of some old retired cops can be cracked. If you are a softy like me, have some Kleenex available. The day-by-day photo-journal of the mission can be found at <www.rotaplast.org>. Click on "Blog" in upper right side of menu bar.

Bruce (Hodgin) <brucehodgin@yahoo.com>

Cell: 408-832-8579

P.S. Sandra. Your photos will be in the mail by the end of the week. Thank you again.

This is the YouTube video Bruce referenced in his message. (4 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0X8hVGUYsdk>

 

• • • • •

 

April 23rd

In the morning Merc (Wed) is listed Russ Roessler, a local attorney who, in the mid to late '70s,  represented numerous local coppers who managed to get themselves into trouble Departmental-wise. Had offices in the Boccardo Building, and was practicing at least up until a few months ago when I ran across him at CVS on Prospect Rd. Spent almost every weekend at his beach house in La Selva Beach. A true gentleman...as well as a Gentle Man.

Bob (Moir) <robillard1045@gmail.com>

Those who wish to view the full obituary and/or sign the guest book should click on this link: <http://tinyurl.com/kvveuqa>

 

TOMORROW IS THE DEADLINE FOR THE CHAPLAIN'S RETIREMENT DINNER

The SJPD Chaplaincy Board would like to invite you to join them for dinner at the Hayes Mansion in honor of Dave Bridgen's retirement from the Chaplaincy on Thursday, June 5, 2014. See the flyer below for more details.

Click here <http://tinyurl.com/lhyosna> to register or make a donation online. Registrations MUST be completed no later than April 25th. This is a firm deadline date with the Hayes Mansion. Please register now!

NOTE: To receive an e-mail with just the form below that

you can print, fill out and mail in, send your request to

<bilmat@comcast.net>

 

DIANE WOO'S RETIREMENT DINNER REMINDER

To receive an email with only the form below so you can print it,

fill it out and mail it in, send a request to <bilmat@comcast.net>

 
 

A LITTLE HELP HERE…
 

This photo was recently posted on Ivan Comelli's VSJP (Vintage San Jose Police) page on Facebook by Bob Evans along with a notation that says the plaque reads: "Widow & Orphans Aid Association in Memory of Departed Members." If you can I.D. any of the officers present, please send an email to Ivan or Bob at <ivcomelli@ymail.com> and/or <rwe1324@comcast.net> It would also be helpful if someone can identify the location of the plaque.

 
 

THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES

April 16 through April 22

A new survey found that 81 percent of parents admit to stealing Easter candy from their children. While the other 19 percent of parents don't think it counts as stealing if you bought the candy in the first place.

Vladimir Putin said he thinks that President Obama would save him if he were drowning. Then President Obama said, “There's only one way to find out.”

Congrats to Chelsea Clinton. Last week, she announced that she is expecting her first child. If it’s a girl, it’ll get some of Chelsea’s old hand-me-downs; and if it’s a boy, it’ll get some of Hillary’s.

Some people are claiming they have spotted the Loch Ness monster on Apple Maps. But it turned out it was just a car that drove into the lake because it was using Apple Maps.

Today is Earth Day. It’s the day we celebrate the "three Rs:” Reduce, reuse, and, uh, Retweet? I don’t know.

In honor of Earth Day, Apple announced that it will recycle all of its used products for free. That’s right, they’re recycling Apple products. And then Samsung said, “Beat you to it.”

Apple will recycle its used products for free. That's not to be confused with what Apple normally does — when it recycles its old ideas for $600.

Joe Biden said the U.S. will help Ukraine with financial aid as long as the leaders tackle corruption. Because if anything stops corruption, it's bribing someone to stop corruption.

A 16-year-old kid got on an airplane in San Jose, but he didn't really get on. He just climbed up into the landing gear on a flight to Hawaii. At JetBlue that's business class.

The 16-year-old kid claims that he passed out right after take-off and woke up just before landing. Isn't that everybody's dream flight?

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is running for re-election, and he's got a catchy campaign slogan: "Forget my first term. I was on crack."

Hillary Clinton is going to be a grandmother. She's very excited about it. She's home right now knitting a tiny pantsuit.

Happy Earth Day. And because it's Earth Day, we'll be using a solar-powered applause sign.

Earth is 71 percent water. No, wait a minute. That's Yankee Stadium beer.

Stephen Colbert is here, ladies and gentlemen. He's here. He just dropped by to sign the lease.

I don't know if you've heard this, but Stephen Colbert will be taking over the show sometime next year — pending the physical.

This year's Easter Sunday happens to fall on the same day as the marijuana holiday, 4/20. Which means no matter what your religion, this Sunday you're probably going to see a giant bunny.

Speaking of religion, the Pope let two 11-year-old boys ride in the Pope-mobile with him. Afterwards the Vatican told the Pope, "That's not the kind of publicity we're looking for."

Some experts are claiming that watching porn is bad for your sex life. Those experts are called wives.

Domino's debuted a new pizza where instead of dough, they're using fried chicken. It's called "Domino's deep dish you're all going to die."

A new report claims that posing with a dog in your online dating profile makes you more desirable — and posing with a cat means you're going to die alone.

A Southwest Airlines pilot who famously landed at the wrong airport has retired. He tried to retire to Florida but ended up in Alabama.

Potential Republican candidate Jeb Bush is married to an immigrant from Mexico. Yeah, so they're taking our jobs and our Jebs.

Today is the 50th anniversary of the first Rolling Stones album. The band is still going strong. Thanks, drugs.

The Rolling Stones celebrated today by partying late into the afternoon.

There is a new survey out today, the best and worst jobs in America. The worst job is lumberjack. Being a lumberjack must be tough. For one thing, you have to wear plaid. And that is so 1990s.

There are a lot of shows about lumberjacks, like "Ax Men" on the History channel. They're all over cable TV: "Bark and Recreation." "Saw and Order." "The Branchelor." "The Wood Wife." "Two Oak Girls." "The Big Branch Theory." "Game of Pine Cones."

Chelsea Clinton is pregnant. There is another one coming. A little baby Clinton. People are already wondering, is the baby a girl? Is it a boy? Is it going to run for president in 2016?

It's a great day for Victoria Beckham, also known as Posh Spice. It is her birthday. You know who also has a birthday? The Ford Mustang. Now the Ford Mustang and Posh Spice are very different, of course. One's a sleek machine that's been redesigned a couple of times over the years but is still a great ride. And the other one is a Mustang.

According to a new survey, being a mathematician is the best job in America. So congratulations, nerds.

I'm announcing my retirement. Well, just until after the commercial.

Today is John Muir Day. He is the father of our national parks, the most famous naturalist of all time. Do not confuse a "Naturalist" with a "Naturist." A naturalist is an expert on nature. A naturist is an expert on walking around outside naked.

John Muir devoted his life to preserving nature. Without his tireless effort, America would be a dirty, over-developed commercial wasteland. Or as we call that here, "Los Angeles."

John Muir and I actually have a lot in common. He was born in Scotland. I was born in Scotland. He relocated to America. I relocated to America. His activism changed U.S. history. I relocated to America.

John Muir was so dedicated to the environment that he would house woodland creatures in his beard. That's Scottish tradition. Sean Connery does it in his chest hair.

It's the new season of "Deadliest Catch," which kicked off tonight on the Discovery Channel. It's in its 10th season. That's 10 seasons of doing the same repetitive task over and over again. I can't relate to that at all.

"Deadliest Catch" reminds me of this show. They started in 2005. We started in 2005. They have a lot of cursing. We have a lot of cursing. They have multiple Emmy awards. We have lots of cursing.

Being a crab fisherman is a very dangerous job. It's like being prime minister of Ukraine. Or Kim Jong Un's chess opponent.

Chelsea Clinton has announced that she is pregnant with her first child. The baby is expected to crawl after nine months and run in 2055.

This weekend over 37,000 people went to Denver to participate in the 4th annual Cannabis Cup. And they all made memories that would last a few minutes.

Last week, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced that he wants to raise the league’s age minimum from 19 to 20. The league’s age maximum will continue to be Kevin Garnett.

Today is Earth Day. At least according to the guy who saw me throw a banana peel in the blue trash can.

The Christian Science Monitor is claiming “Hillary Clinton will be a tad less interested in running for president now that she’s about to be a grandmother.” And if you put a grain of sand in your pocket there’s a tad less sand on the beach.

Dutch designers have created a baby’s onesie that comes with built-in Wi-Fi. That way, your child can search the web for better parents.

Happy Earth Day. Earth Day was founded in 1970. It's the one day of the year we tell the Earth we love it. With the other 364 days we try to kill it.

After what we have done to it, it is almost disrespectful to have an Earth Day. It's like lice declaring a Head Day.

Everyone celebrates Earth Day in his or her own way. In honor of Earth Day, I have filled all four of my pockets with fresh potting soil.

President Obama's approval rating is on the rise. It was 39 percent in November. It is up to 45 percent. His approval rating has gone from terrible to slightly less terrible.

 
 

WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF APRIL 19, 2014

The facts behind the legends, information and

misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox

New Articles

• Does McDonald's buy their meat from a company called '100% Beef,' which allows them to legally but deceptively claim they use 100% beef in their hamburgers? <http://www.snopes.com/business/market/allbeef.asp>

• Video shows a ball girl making an amazing catch at a minor league baseball game. <http://www.snopes.com/photos/advertisements/ballgirl.asp>

• Was the kidnapping and murder plot of the film Fargo based on a true story? <http://www.snopes.com/movies/films/fargo.asp>

• Have Jews in eastern Ukraine been ordered to register with the government or else face loss of citizenship and deportation? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/ukraine.asp>

• Has the American Psychiatric Association classified the taking of 'selfies' as a mental disorder? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/satire/selfies.asp>

• Has congress has introduced a bill requiring military veterans to inform their neighbors about their combat service? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/satire/ptsd.asp>

• Has the Miami-Dade County Elections Department implemented a policy to close the bathrooms at all polling facilities? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/ballot/restroom.asp>

• Has actor Leonardo DiCaprio been tapped to portray Martin Luther King in an upcoming film? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/satire/mlk.asp>

• Warning about neighborhood residents finding unexploded 'bottle bombs' in their yards. <http://www.snopes.com//crime/warnings/bottlebomb.asp>

• Under Obamacare, must patients 76 and older must be admitted to the hospital by their primary care physicians in order to be covered by Medicare? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/medical/medicare76.asp>

• Will the U.S. dollar officially collapse on 1 July 2014 due to the implementation of H.R. 2847? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/conspiracy/hr2847.asp>

• In the 1987 tax year, seven million people previously claimed as dependents on income tax returns suddenly disappeared. Where did they go? <http://www.snopes.com/business/taxes/dependents.asp>

• Are Senator Harry Reid and a Chinese company building a solar plant behind a standoff between federal agents and a Nevada rancher? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/conspiracy/nevada.asp>

• Warning about studies that have supposedly demonstrated Monsanto-developed corn contains toxins that cause organ failure in rats and adverse effects in pregnant women. <http://www.snopes.com/food/tainted/monsantocorn.asp>

• Was singer Patti Labelle arrested after attacking Aretha Franklin at an Atlanta concert? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/satire/labelle.asp>

• Is the federal government preventing Volkswagen's XL1 model car from being sold in the U.S. because the vehicle is too fuel-efficient? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/conspiracy/xl1.asp>

• Did the Hobby Lobby chain fire an employee for divorcing her husband without company approval? <http://www.snopes.com/politics/satire/hobbylobby.asp>

• Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news stories from around the world! <http://www.snopes.com/daily/>

Worth a Second Look

• A compendium of superstitions and lore associated with Easter. <http://www.snopes.com/holidays/easter/easterlore.asp>

Still Haunting the Inbox

• Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world. <http://www.snopes.com/info/top25uls.asp>

Fraud Afoot

• Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money. <http://www.snopes.com/fraud/topscams.asp>

 

 

THE LIGHTER SIDE & OTHER ODDS AND ENDS

Large or Full screen preferred for YouTube videos
 

The Critter Corner
 

Peter Graves (the actor) and Tom Cruise would be proud of this "Mission Impossible" feline. (1 Mins.)



<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hd3x91iD9Uk#t=37>

 

• • • • •

 

This is a situation where the mother Elephant has to be scared away in order to save her baby that had fallen in a well. (5 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYKtN20JAIA>

 

• • • • •

 

Substitute these carrots for warm glazed donuts and I know a few retired cops who could put this Hamster to shame. (1 Min.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZpdr8B5kcE>

  

• • • • •

 

This video of Flipper the cat who barely escaped being euthanized is a little over a year old. We would like to think that she has since won the heart of someone and has since been adopted. (2 Mins.) 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWmrM3T_daI>

  

• • • • •

 

It's been several weeks since an Otter was featured in the Critter Corner, so let's highlight this one that has taken a liking to a little boy and wants to play. (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9APqLA2YKs>

  

• • • • •

 

We love the sound effects someone added to this clip of a cat beating up on a dog that had the audacity to sniff the feline. (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmHmxbRPZsY>

  

• • • • •

 

How can you not have sympathy for a Fox cub whose head is stuck inside a can? Watch this: (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UeQkgxSvB4>

  

• • • • •

 

Could this monkey in a Jerusalem zoo that walks upright be related to the missing link between Man and Ape? (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8L_SjngmnO8>

  

• • • • •

 

Would this not be a terrifying experience if you have never seen or heard a kitten before? (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1MWHvsPP4Y>

  

• • • • •

 

Never underestimate the intelligence of a Honey Badger. This excerpt from a BBC documentary will show you why. (4 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c36UNSoJenI>

  

• • • • •

 

Having a difficult time deciding if your next pet is going to be a cat or a dog? If you enjoy a deep tissue massage, perhaps this clip will help you decide. (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCdizjgQCMM>

  

• • • • •

 

Check out this footage of a little cutie playing with fourteen German Shepherds. It's difficult to determine who is having the most fun. (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofCZNgnPtqU>

  

• • • • •

 

We have included video clips of "Jumpy" in past editions of the Farsider. This one was just posted a few days ago and describes him as "Jumpy the Parkour Dog." It’s worth a watch, especially if you are a dog lover. (4 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqk1h8uuiBc>

  

• • • • •

 

This is a short story courtesy of ABC news about a dog named "Duke" that saved the life of a dying baby. (2 Mins.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQvzKk9Tn0s>

  

This week's Critter Corner is now history

  

If you don't watch any of the other items in this column this week, we strongly recommend you take a few minutes and at least watch this TED presentation as it is one of the most interesting and profound videos we have seen in a long, long time. It's titled "Hidden Miracles of the Natural World." (7 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiZqn6fV-4Y>

  

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Imagine that you work at the Kennedy Space Center and you are asked to assemble for a historical group photo along with all other employees. That's exactly what happened a couple of years ago. Trust me, this time lapse footage is worth a couple minutes of your time. (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tr-yTbWuhWE>

  

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Those of you who once rode (and/or continue to ride) a motor might be interested in this motorcycle video diary of a guy who rode from Alaska to South America. (9 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=huiBrAdd8HM

 

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Do you recognize the lyrics "Little boxes on the hillside, little boxes made of ticky-tacky?" You are no doubt dating yourself if you do. The name of the group is "Walk Off the Earth." (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LM8JhvfoqdA>

  

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Many of you have no doubt seen some of these activities that help cleanse the gene pool, but Bill Leavy and I would wager that few of you have ever seen them set to a musical parody of Dean Martin's "That's Amore." (3 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-w-mWhIWEM>

  

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Be honest, guys. Haven't you had a desire to be a heavy equipment operator at some point in your life? How about working for Caterpillar and being assigned to play a game of JENGA blocks in which the object is to remove and then reposition a stack of 27 blocks one at a time without toppling the structure using only the Cat machines and attachments. (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWc8dUl7Xfo>

  

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For you golfers, these were touted to be the Top 10 Holes-in-One on the PGA Tour as of Jan. 2011 when the clip was posted on YouTube. (6 Mins.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gt3DHpOY6i8>

  

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If you will give this video of “Mehdi Sadaghdar the Know-It-All" 60 seconds of your time, we think you will agree that he has a bright future as a comic. If you agree, you will find other instructional videos bearing his name on the right side of the screen. (4 Mins,) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A129SM9S54A

Here's an example where Mehdi undertakes to lose some weight with an extreme workout. After it fails to slim him down, he invents a motion sensor that will force him to drop some pounds. Watch this. (4 Mins.) 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A0314QOklz8>

  

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Earlier this week a couple of TV shows aired a 30-second snippet of this video that is described as "Intense Downhill Mountain Biking" from the rider's point of view (POV). This is the full clip that will show you just how intense it really was when you consider the drop-offs on both sides of what is loosely considered the "trail." (2 Mins.) 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZgRap-q3x4>

  

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It's doubtful that these two "pen spinners" are going to be able to earn a comfortable living doing what they do, but in this crazy world one never knows. One thing is for sure: They are very good pen spinners. (3 Mins.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=voqYX8_VjvQ>

  

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This clip from Steve Postier documents what are referred to as "Ultimate Close Calls" thus far in 2014. Watch the video and you are likely to agree that the targets of misfortune are indeed fortunate to still be among the living. (That’s a huge boulder that came crashing down from a mountain in the pic below.) (7 Mins.) 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnp1e3tMTFo

 

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Is this 2013 Ford Interceptor with the latest in Motorola technology the ultimate patrol car? Maybe, maybe not. Check out this video sent in by Les Nunes, who pointed out that the gal featured in the clip should be considered a bonus as "she is pretty easy on the eyes." (9 Mins.)

 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxudlwOEhKQ>

  

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Any of you remember this Kia Sorento Super Bowl ad from last year? I would like to believe that it aired during a head call because I don’t. Is it a manifestation that my memory is going south? (2 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwHG_7-CW0c>

  

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How many ways can you arrange a deck of cards? Think of it this way: Any time you pick up a well shuffled deck, you are almost certainly holding an arrangement of cards that has never before existed and might never exist again. This TED-Ed clip explains. (4 Mins.) 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNS1QvDzCVw>

  

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Want to have some fun and freak people out? It's easy. Just learn how to pull off this prank. A simple Google or YouTube search for a “headless prank” will show you how it's done. (1 Min.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsL_JDtVbww>

  

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Does this firefighter from 2009 look stoned? He just got through fighting a fire in San Diego where there was a significant marijuana grow. Jimmy Kimmel explains. (1 Min.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dHk6sdOVd1E>

  

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We've seen youngsters perform amazing tricks on bicycles in recent years. This 60-year-0ld film clip highlights what was considered amazing back in the 1950s. (2 Mins.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wKtpYSn9BA>

  

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These three brothers who are known as the Sleepy Man Banjo Boys wowed Letterman and his audience a couple of years ago, and with good reason. Have a look and listen. (4 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXcRI0BdioE>

  

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When it comes to musical talent, is there no minimum age in which a child can excel? Apparently not. Listen to this 8-year-old prodigy perform a trumpet solo. (2 Mins.)

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9Pcy1PgPU0>

  

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We challenge you brainiacs to explain any of these 10 discoveries that are claimed to be unexplained by science. (3 Mins.) 

 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ug7AaJjwBDA>

  

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Dick Tush says this is the greatest play in all of baseball, and we fully agree with the retired motor officer. Even if you have seen this clip in the 6 years since it was first posted on YouTube, it should be worth another look. (4 Mins.) 

 <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IrV8QPQAhxo>

  

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Choosing this week's feel-good closer was easy. It's about a young man in need of a job and the owner of a restaurant who knew he would make an excellent employee. (3 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ydy1HiZ-Vio>

 

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C'ya

 

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