September 4, 2014
Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
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
Our Department is in
the news, again. Click here to read the Mercury News' story on our Chief's
decision to return the recently acquired Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle
(MRAP). (Ed. — The story appears in the Trials &
Tribulations column below.)
The story's first sentence pretty much sums up the event."Amid a national furor
over police militarization, the San Jose Police Department has decided to get
rid of a 15-ton armored vehicle it received earlier this year from a federal
military surplus program."
The story went on to say, "In San Jose, the MRAP, designed to withstand
improvised explosive devices used against U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan,
has been in an undisclosed storage garage in the city. It was being outfitted
for street use when police brass -- already facing criticism for their recent
purchase of a drone -- decided it wasn't worth the potential damage to the
department's image and community relationships."
Our Department spokeswoman, Sgt. Heather Randol, very succinctly explained our
Department's need for the vehicle."It was acquired to provide protection to our
bomb unit members. We are the regional bomb facility. We are a resource in the
county and statewide."
The Chief sent out an email explaining his decision to return the vehicle. Click
to see the email.
"After obtaining the MRAP, physically inspecting it, gaining input from
various stakeholders, understanding the community perceptions of such a vehicle,
evaluating the infrequency of potential use of such a vehicle, the option that
other law enforcement agencies have obtained like vehicles and the fact that the
SJPD could potentially utilize similar equipment from other law enforcement
agencies, we have reconsidered our position on actually having an MRAP. We will
be decommissioning the MRAP from our fleet and will be returning it to the
Defense Logistical Agency."
Interestingly, Redwood City also obtained a similar vehicle. Their Mayor, Jeff
Gee, was questioned by a citizen about the militarization issue and the Mayor
defended his City's possession of such equipment. Click
to see the email (it's worth the read).
"We live in an increasingly more complex world than ever before. The Active
Shooter exercise at Roosevelt School this past summer, was a stark reminder
about the potential realities we face everywhere. This exercise was to prepare
our public safety organizations to respond in the event of a shooter on one of
our school campuses - an all too real situation given the events seen across our
"I hope and pray that we never have to see this vehicle deployed. However, if
the violence of the world reaches Redwood City, I want our public safety
organizations to have the tools that they feel they need to protect lives."
Is it any wonder why our Department has lost so many of its officers to Redwood
City? We applaud Mayor Gee's strong support of his public safety personnel.
to watch this video of a modern day gunfight with police.
• • • • •
The Stakes are Huge
Raul Peralez needs your help and without it San Jose will be stuck with Don
Gagliardi, who wrote the ballot argument in support of Measure B. Here is a
link to contribute to fellow police officer Peralez's City Council campaign.
Raul finished 1st in the June primary. His opponent, Don Gagliardi is supported
by Sam Liccardo, Chuck Reed, and the Mercury News. Raul has received the
endorsement of two of those three candidates who also ran in the June primary,
with the third, Kathy Sutherland, remaining neutral in the race.
Raul has picked up numerous new endorsements since his primary win including
several who had endorsed Kathy Sutherland. Here is a partial list of those who
have endorsed Raul since the primary:
State Senator Jim Beall
State Senator Jerry Hill
Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski
Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez
Santa Clara County Supervisor Ken Yeager
Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith
Cupertino Mayor Gilbert Wong
Campbell City Councilmember Evan Low
Mountain View City Councilmember Margaret Abe-Koga
Former State Assemblymember Joe Coto
Former Milpitas Mayor Bob Livengood
League of Conservation Voters of Santa Clara County
Sierra Club, Loma Prieta Chapter
In addition, these elected officials and organizations endorsed Kathy Sutherland
in June and now have switched their endorsement to Raul Peralez:
San José City Councilmember Donald Rocha
Margaret Abe-Koga, Councilmember City of Mountain View
Dr. Jeffrey Lease, San Jose-Evergreen Community College Trustee
Roma Dawson, City of San José Arts Commission
Former San José City Councilmember Nancy Pyle
DAWN - Democratic Activists for Women Now
Silicon Valley Asian Pacific American Democratic Club
Silicon Valley Democratic Club
Raul will face a relentless attack from Gagliardi and his supporters and Raul
will need the resources to fight back. Make a contribution now of $25, $50,
$100 or more to help turn San Jose in a New Direction. Go to this link and help
your colleague now.
Here are the two notable endorsements Raul's opponent has picked up since
coming in second place in the June primary:
San Jose Councilmember Sam Liccardo
Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen
Don't let a Liccardo/Rosen friendly lawyer take this seat. Raul can win but he
needs our support. Please make a contribution now, you must act or one of the
architects of Measure B, one of the signors of the ballot argument that has
destroyed our Department will be the next Councilmember representing downtown
San Jose. You can't afford that risk.
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF THE CITY AND SJPD
It would be difficult to accuse the Mercury news of being subtle
in drawing attention to this Aug. 29th story about the so-called militarization
of municipal police departments in general and the SJPD in particular.
The Redwood City Police Department debuted its new armored vehicle, identical to
the one San Jose police are returning to the military, at the city’s Fourth of
July parade. Redwood City police plan to keep theirs.
By Robert Salonga
Mercury News — Aug. 29, 2014
SAN JOSE — Amid a national furor over police militarization, the San Jose Police
Department has decided to get rid of a 15-ton armored vehicle it received
earlier this year from a federal military surplus program.
San Jose’s move comes right on the heels of similar plans by the city of Davis
to jettison its mine-resistant, ambush-protected troop transport, or MRAP. Among
the handful of other Bay Area agencies that own the hulking transports, Redwood
City, South San Francisco and Antioch are standing by them.
In San Jose, the MRAP, designed to withstand improvised explosive devices used
against U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, has been in an undisclosed storage
garage in the city. It was being outfitted for street use when police brass —
already facing criticism for their recent purchase of a drone — decided it
wasn’t worth the potential damage to the department’s image and community
San Jose police spokeswoman Sgt. Heather Randol said internal department
conversations about forfeiting the MRAP were already happening before the
vehicles gained wide notoriety during the civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri,
where local police deployed them for crowd control and sparked a national
conversation over their use on American streets.
“We’ve been going through the analysis process,” Randol said. “It is a useful
tool, but we realize it could be viewed by the community as the militarization
of SJPD. It could create a divide, and we want the community’s trust.”
The decision to give back the vehicle is the second such move in Northern
California this week: Tuesday night, the Davis City Council ordered their police
chief to get rid of his department’s MRAP.
“Symbol matters. We are a species that uses symbol, and this symbolizes the most
destructive force on the planet, which is the U.S. military,” Mayor Pro Tem Robb
Davis said at the Davis council meeting.
He added that “this piece of equipment, because of its powerful symbolism, will
hurt” trust between police and residents.
Several agencies in the Bay Area have some form of armored transport, but only a
handful have an MRAP, with San Jose the only Santa Clara County city to have
one. The vehicle, standing about 10 feet tall, dwarfs most fortified vehicles
used by police, such as the more commonly used Bearcat.
In addition to its size, the MRAP is designed to withstand the kinds of roadside
bombs that killed scores of U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. San Jose got
the half-million dollar vehicle, manufactured by BEA Systems and known as a
Caiman, for free through the Pentagon’s 1033 program, which donates surplus
equipment to law-enforcement agencies.
“It was acquired to provide protection to our bomb unit members,” Randol said.
“We are the regional bomb facility. We are a resource in the county and
Micaela Davis, an attorney with the ACLU of Northern California, credited police
leaders for the decision but took issue with how it came and went with little
public oversight, echoing protests from the organization over the department’s
acquisition, also earlier this year, of an unmanned aerial vehicle that is
currently shelved pending the formation of a use policy and community input.
“The department should be commended for responding to concerns,” Davis said of
San Jose. “But it brings up questions about whether it was needed in the first
place. It’s why public hearings should be required on the front end.”
The pending return of the MRAP is unpopular with much of the rank and file at
SJPD, who are backed by Sgt. Jim Unland, president of the San Jose Police
“This was politically expedient. I don’t know why you wouldn’t want the best
equipment for your officers,” he said. “You can’t predict the hazards and
dangers that will come in 10 or 20 years.”
He noted the integration of military equipment in police work is long-standing.
“Helicopters were primarily a military vehicle. So are AR’s (rifles), and so are
the tactical vests and helmets we wear,” Unland said. “Those come from military
usage, have been incorporated in law enforcement, and save lives. If there are
issues of trust with the community, explain the use, and create a firm policy of
when we can use it and when we can’t.”
But LaDoris Cordell, the city’s Independent Police Auditor and a retired judge,
said community trust in police is threatened by the show of might that such an
armored vehicle projects.
“SJPD, if it is to continue its efforts to build trust with the communities it
serves, must not go down the path of militarization,” she said.
In Redwood City, spokesman Malcolm Smith said police leaders are keeping those
sensitivities in mind as they write guidelines for the transport’s use, though
it has already been rolled out for a major event — the city’s Fourth of July
South San Francisco says its MRAP has already come in handy.
“It has a horrible public perception, but in reality, this is designed just to
protect the occupants,” said Lt. Michael Remedios, SWAT commander for the South
San Francisco Police Department.
Officer Matt O’Connor sits inside the Navistar Maxx Pro used
by South San Francisco police. Like many police departments
across the United States, the South San Francisco Police
Department has acquired an armored military vehicle. The
tactical vehicles have caused an uproar in many communities.
Remedios said the vehicle can bring police and emergency personnel closer to a
hostile scene to give immediate help to victims without waiting for an area to
be secured. He also highlighted its ability to traverse broken streets and
downed power lines after a disaster.
He also contended that the imposing nature of the vehicle can prevent violence.
On three occasions since his department got the MRAP in October, South San
Francisco police used it to serve high-risk search warrants.
“It looks intimidating,” Remedios said. “If we roll out to an
armed-and-dangerous person’s house, they’re less likely to engage police
• • • •
Don't let it be said that Macris and Mattos didn't try to warn
the Police Administration about upcoming controversies regarding the
militarization of equipment and drone surveillance when these two Cops-a-Field
cartoons appeared in the SJPD Insider thirty years ago in the mid 1980s.
We queried our in-house NFL referee
about his opening schedule this week and received this reply…
My opening game is New Orleans at Atlanta on Sept 7 at 10:00 a.m., which will be
televised in the Bay Area on Fox.
I have a bye week in week 2, after which I will work the Baltimore at Cleveland
game on Sunday, Sept 21.
On Sunday, Sept. 28th, my crew and I will be in London to work the Miami and
Will update you when I learn more.
• • • • •
Not sure if you have seen this before, but with a son and two nephews in the
military, and with everything going on the world right now, I found it moving
will take you to the 3-minute video Steve sent in. The mantra "We Must Fight"
certainly seems pertinent given what's going on with ISIS.
• • • • •
Readers of the Mercury News
are expressing their views about the SJPD in letters to the editor. Here are
three that appeared this week. (One is from the daughter of a deceased San Jose
officer: either Art or Dan Campos).
Paramilitary Behaviors by Police Heighten Fear
Letter to the Editor
Mercury News — Aug. 31, 2014
Although the San Jose Police Officers Association and the rank and file find the
return of the MRAP (mine-resistant, ambush-protected troop transport) unpopular
(Page 1A, Aug. 29), the rights of the people to a transparent government and a
law enforcement agency that serves the public good is critical today. We cannot
allow police officers’ fear of the public to reach such an extreme that they are
focused more on self-protection than public service. To do so will place this
community in peril of establishing paramilitary response to the people as they
exercise their constitutional rights.
People of color and the mentally disabled already experience this treatment as “
experiments” in escalated police responses that too often result in unjustified
police violence and civilian deaths. Too many local communities already fear the
police, with justification. And the rest of the community should realize
unchecked police fears resulting in their adopting paramilitary behaviors
creates the real potential to expand and escalate community unrest and loss of
Delorme McKee-Stovall, San Jose
Liccardo Will Move San Jose Forward
Letter to the Editor
Mercury News — Sept. 1, 2014
Pete Campbell’s and
Carm Grande’s statements (Letters, Aug. 25) offer no solution and seem to
perpetuate a negative campaign. My late father was a San Jose policeman. I have
always believed all law enforcement deserve the best.
My husband is a member of Local 405 and his union has done much to provide for
members. Carm, Sam Liccardo is not forming a new SJPD. Reform was needed, and
with a better economy, no one more than Sam wants to reattain the department’s
glory. Pete, because Dave Cortese is supported by the union does not make him
unworthy of a vote.
Both are good men in public service, doing something most of us won’t, run for
public office. I support Sam Liccardo and volunteer. I believe he will move San
Jose forward. Go to,
Read it and vote for him Nov. 4.
Rebecca Campos, Campbell
Decision to Return Military Vehicle Wise
Letter to the Editor
Mercury News — Sept. 3, 2014
The administration of the San Jose Police Department should be commended for
their bold and courageous decision to return the MRAP vehicle.
I believe that law and order begins by maintaining order. The interrelationships
between law enforcement officers and the public they serve are major factors in
this regard. Disappointment of the “rank and file” is perhaps understandable in
view of the “macho image” such impressive military equipment affords. However,
the reasoning of the San Jose Police Officers Association, that an MRAP is
somehow equivalent to helicopters, assault rifles, helmets and vests, is a
specious argument (SJPD would not be permitted the use of bazookas and RPGs). If
an MRAP is an appropriate response in a civil action, I would much prefer the
deployment of the National Guard, whose discipline, control and military
authority are well established. I am proud that the SJPD values community
advocacy over antagonism.
Henry Richards, Los Gatos
THE LATEST BILLY & SPANNER IS NOW AVAILABLE ON-LINE
to download it to your desktop.
NEW VANGUARD IS ALSO ON-LINE
Hard copies are in the mail and will arrive shortly.
To view the Sept. edition of the eVanguard on-line, click
NEW SJPD HISTORY BOOK TO BE AVAILABLE ON MONDAY, SEPT. 22nd
John Carr Jr. and Jarrod Nunes — both sons of retired San Jose cops — have put
together an excellent book that details the history of the SJPD. This is the
third such publication in the past 31 years. The first was the SJPD
Commemorative Album that was published in 1983. It was followed 20 years later
by a second similar book: "San Jose Police Department 1849-2003: A History of
Excellence." This third book provides a more comprehensive and updated history
of the Dept. from 1849 through the present. We had the opportunity to review its
content before it went to press and can highly recommend its purchase for anyone
who has worn the SJPD badge. If you don't buy a copy for yourself, get one for
your kids and their offspring.
All sales will benefit the SJPD Historical Society. It will go on sale on
Monday, Sept. 22nd, and be available at most book stores as well as on-line at
Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other on-line book sellers. You can also shave 5
percent off the $21.95 cost by purchasing the book at the POA Office when it
becomes available in a couple of weeks.
CORTESE FOR MAYOR FUNDRAISER
ANNOUNCING CRIA's ANNUAL GOLF TOURNAMENT
—Northern California Robbery Investigators' Association—
CAN BUYING HOOTCH AFTER HOURS QUALIFY AS A SECOND STRIKE?
It pains us to air SJPD's dirty
laundry, but news is news, and there is no reason we can see why those of you
who live out of the area and are unaware of this story should escape the
embarrassment of acknowledging that a "bad apple" has fallen from the tree. In
addition to a rape charge, the officer has now been charged with buying a bottle
of vodka after 2 a.m. It's such a heinous crime that it made the front page of
the Local Section of yesterday's Mercury News and was covered by the four major
TV news outlets on Wednesday night.
Officer in Rape Case Faces New Charge
—Cop is arraigned in illegal after-hours purchase of booze—
Mercury News — Sept. 3, 2014
SAN JOSE — The San Jose police officer accused of rape was charged Tuesday with
a new crime — storming out of the Gilroy Safeway with a bottle of vodka about
2:30 a.m. in violation of a state law that bans the sale or purchase of alcohol
between 2 and 6 a.m. Officer Geoffrey Graves faces one misdemeanor count of
violating that law, but he was not charged with theft because a grocery store
cashier said he left $20 at the check stand, apparently enough to cover the
cost. The incident occurred May 25, though it did not surface publicly until
Tuesday when Graves was arraigned.
The new charge comes while Graves is free on $100,000 bail and on paid
administrative leave for the Sept. 22 alleged rape of an undocumented woman he
first encountered during a disturbance call. He faces up to eight years in
prison if he is convicted. However, experts say prosecutors could add a gun
enhancement because he was armed at the time of the alleged sexual assault,
potentially extending his maximum sentence to life in prison. The Safeway
incident was captured by the store’s surveillance cameras, law enforcement
A customer is seen approaching the check stand with a bottle of liquor about
2:30 a.m., talking briefly to a cashier, throwing down some money and stalking
out. In an interview with police, the cashier said he told the customer he
couldn’t sell him the alcohol. It is not uncommon for such incidents to be
knocked down to an infraction punishable by a fine. But if Graves’ rape case
goes to trial, the prosecution may be able to introduce the matter as character
evidence — in particular, of his alleged disdain for the law. Graves, who did
not enter a plea Tuesday, is due back in court Oct. 16 on the alcohol charge.
His preliminary hearing on the rape charge is set for Oct. 1 but may be
continued until later this year.
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
Aug. 26th through Sept. 2nd
How about the Emmy Awards last night? Almost every show on TV was nominated for
an Emmy, and once again I'd just like to say it's an honor to be ignored by your
Did the Emmy Awards seem like a long show? I felt like Sophia Vergara's dress. I
could hardly stay up.
President Obama watched the Emmys and said the U.S. would be out of the Emmys by
Over the weekend in California — a big one, a 6.0 earthquake. It was so powerful
that Lindsey Lohan was driving on the right side of the road.
You can now buy a pack of beer containing 99 cans. A 99-can pack of beer. Who
says America has lost its competitive edge?
In Washington state you can now smoke weed. But they have something I've never
heard of. It's weed soda. It is the opposite of diet soda, if you think about
it. A minute ago I was just thirsty. Now I'm starving. Weed soda!
Burger King is moving to Canada. they bought the doughnut place, Tim Horton's.
Financed by Warren Buffett, burger king will be moving to Canada to avoid paying
taxes. Hearing about it, president Obama immediately took away Buffett's medal
It's Labor Day weekend. Labor Day, of course, is a holiday where people take
three days off from being unemployed.
It's Labor Day weekend — time to put up your Christmas decorations.
Chinese authorities have seized 30,000 tons of what? Chicken feet. Because
they're tainted. Well, there goes my cookout.
Is there really a difference between tainted chicken feet and non-tainted
chicken feet? It's negligible.
How many of you have kids heading off to college? Well, don't you worry, because
that liberal arts degree, that thing is a license to print money.
What an awful day today. It's 90 and insufferable. No, wait a minute. That's me.
Here's how hot it is. I got on the subway this morning and I saw a rat eating a
Dr. Phil is 64 years old today. People want to know what to get Dr. Phil. I say
if you want to get him something, how about a medical degree?
Last night was the 66th annual Emmy Awards. An night of which all of television
makes beautiful, sweet love to itself.
The Emmys are typically on Sunday night. But they moved them to Monday for the
first time for 38 years. One reason is the VMAs were scheduled for Sunday night
on MTV. For those of you too young to know, music videos are something MTV used
to play before it turned into a network for pregnant teenagers.
The VMAs are a chance for all of the former Disney stars to show up with their
new tongue piercings.
A rare copy of Action Comics No. 1, which was the first published appearance of
Superman, just sold on eBay for $3.2 million. That's a lot of disposable income.
To buy a comic about Superman, you have to be as rich as Batman. I think that
means Superman wins, right?
Apple is secretly developing a new product rumored to be the largest iPad
they've ever made. It's said to be 12.9 inches across, and it will be the first
iPad that folds out into a full-size bed.
I just spent a lot of money getting the small iPad and now there's a big iPad
I'm also going to get. They come with a pre-shattered screen for that cool,
An iPad that's 12.9 inches — it doesn't sound big, but it is big. And it's going
to make those people that take pictures with their iPad look even more
According to a report from the United Nations, the damage from global warming
could be irreversible. It's clear we need to do something. We need to give the
Earth the ice bucket challenge.
You know, it's hard to believe. But it's almost time for a new season of
"Dancing with the Stars." According to TMZ, the producers have a dream list. I
have my dream for the next "Dancing with the stars." His name is Rob Ford,
If Rob Ford doesn't win re-election, I'm going to try to book him to perform at
our office holiday party.
According to an anthropologist from the University of Hawaii, who spent years
studying this, Hello Kitty is not actually a cat. I hope the anthropologist was
studying other stuff, too.
The anthropologist said she was preparing for a museum exhibit and according to
the company that makes Hello Kitty, she is not a cat. She is a cartoon
character. And a little girl. But not a cat. That makes as much sense as Hasbro
announcing that Mr. Potato Head wasn't a potato.
Hello Kitty is a cat. I don't know why they would take that position. Maybe
there's a translation issue.
I had a relaxing Labor Day weekend. It was a big weekend at the barbecue grill.
I made Italian sausage with peppers and onions. And I ate and I ate. The object
of Labor Day is to eat so much that I feel like I'm going into labor.
Nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence and other female stars were leaked online over
the weekend. I think you can tell how good or bad a person you are based on how
many seconds you wait to Google Jennifer Lawrence nude after hearing the news.
Anything under 60, you're going to hell.
Early reports suggest that the culprits obtained photos by hacking into the
Internet cloud through Apple's iPhone app. Apple is denying that. They're
claiming hackers broke in by finding out email passwords. I think the CEO of
Apple should be forced to apologize in the nude.
Next week they're expected to announce a new iPhone with a virtual wallet. Apple
is believed to be partnering with American Express. The wallet would replace
having to carry credit cards around. You can lose your naked pictures and all
your money in one easy step.
Welcome to The Tonight Show. I'm your host, former iCloud user Jimmy Fallon.
Over the weekend a hacker got into Apple’s iCloud and leaked nude photos of a
number of celebrities, including Jennifer Lawrence and Kim Kardashian. Jennifer
wants to sue the hacker for damages, while Kim wants to pay the hacker for his
Texas Senator Ted Cruz has invited President Obama to play golf on the
U.S.-Mexico border. Cruz thought it was a funny way to point out problems the
president hasn't fixed yet. While Obama said, “So are we playing or not?”
A woman in Mexico claims that she turned 127 years old over the weekend. She
says she’s still pretty happy, but worried that she's still single and almost in
It's rumored that next week the new iPhone is going to come out. It's going to
come with a larger screen, more memory, and it can leak celebrity photos twice
A spokesperson for Jennifer Lawrence, one of the people who had nude photos
leaked, is calling her nude leaked photos a violation of privacy. Meanwhile Kim
Kardashian is calling her nude leaked photos "stuff I was going to release next
The man who released the nude photos of celebrities is admitting he's on the
run. However, he's been given asylum by a shadowy group known only as “guys.”
Over the weekend the White House chef married an MSNBC news anchor. Or as Fox
News reported it, "Person who serves the president marries person who serves the
It's Labor Day. How do we celebrate? Immigrant working. It's the day we say
"Thank you" to the typical American worker. So, "Gracias."
It's a big holiday today. President Obama spent the day golfing. Then he
remembered it was a holiday.
The weather is changing in L.A. It is hot here. How hot is it? Just yesterday,
the cloud started raining nude celebrities.
In case you haven't heard, there are nude celebrities all over the Internet. I
never thought I'd see the day. Someone hacked "the cloud." The cloud is
something I don't really understand. It's like whatever language Honey Boo Boo
I'm telling you, Hollywood hasn't been rocked like this since the great kale
Do you read People magazine? Neither do I. But they released exclusive pictures
of Angelina Jolie's wedding dress. I don't know about you, but I find it
refreshing that people still get excited about pictures of celebrities wearing
Justin Bieber was arrested and charged with assault after his vehicle hit a
mini-van. On the plus side, it was the first hit he's had in a while.
Happy birthday to Keanu Reeves. He turned 50 years old today. He announced his
next movie, "Bill and Ted's Excellent Prostate Exam."
In Los Angeles we got our first Dunkin' Donuts shop. I can think of one reason
why Dunkin' Donuts might not be successful here. It's the people of Los Angeles.
They'll say, "Do you have kale doughnuts?" "Is it organic?" "Were these
doughnuts raised humanely?"
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie finally got married during a secret ceremony at a
chateau in France. They said their vows surrounded by 100 of their closest
Today is Keanu Reeves’ 50th birthday. And it’s a good thing, too. Any lower than
that and the bus explodes.
Reports say that several of the world’s leading kale farms are running out of
seeds after the recent increase in demand for the vegetable. I guess they can’t
grow it as fast as we can throw it in the garbage.
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF AUG. 23, 2014
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
• Facebook appeals calls for justice for a young girl
in a playground incident.
• Is notorious mom Casey Anthony
• Rumor claims most of the $100 million raised from ALS 'Ice
donations won't go to ALS-related research and services.
• Has rapper
thought to have been killed in 1996, come out of hiding?
• Brouhaha over Zara clothiers offering children's pajamas resembling
• Does a video show a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup
allowed to fly on US airlines with no identification?
• Will McDonald's
boxes come with Ouija boards?
• Has a nail polish been developed that can detect the presence of
• Will AMC's
be returning with new episodes?
• Does Starbucks'
contain dangerous toxins?
• Were a bevy of
quietly imposed upon Americans in July 2014 due to the Affordable Care Act?
• Has the CDC intentionally suppressed reports of
of autism from reaching the public?
• Did President Obama break precedent by
declining to attend
the funeral of General Harold Greene and failing to send any administration
officials to the ceremony?
• Does the use of cellular phones pose a danger of touching off
at gas stations?
arrested while visiting Ferguson, Missouri?
• Did the governor of Iowa charter a flight to summarily return
• Contrary to social media reports,
has not been killed in a car accident in Australia.
• Was a man in Ireland killed by the bite of a deadly
• Photographs show
praying in the streets of New York City.
• Don't forget to visit our
page for a collection of odd news stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
• Did a bank once accept and cash a
written on the side of a cow?
Still Haunting the Inbox
• Check out our 25
list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world.
• Visit our
page for a list of schemes commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from
THE LIGHTER SIDE & OTHER ODDS AND ENDS
Large or Full Screen recommended for YouTube videos.
• • • • •
Of all the Blue Angels videos we have included in the Farsider over the years,
this one from Paul Salerno rates near the top of the chart. It was posted on
YouTube just two weeks ago and takes you inside the cockpit with one of the
Blues in the two-man F/A 18 Hornet. When you see the passenger show his pearly
whites, it means he and the pilot are pulling several G's. Enjoy the
and try not to grit your own teeth. (4 Mins.)
• • • • •
We were very impressed with
stunt by the Red Bull Sky Dive Team until we realized he was wearing a
parachute. (3 Mins.)
• • • • •
This recently posted video received from Steve Postier shows 15 rockets launched
by Hamas being intercepted at once by the Iron Dome. That brings up a question
we've been wondering about for some time: How can that little helmet worn by
many of the men in Israel protect them from a rocket that manages to get
• • • • •
Want to see what a "demilitarized" police force can look like? Watch this
Powerline Blog video sent in by Bill Leavy of Muslims in support of Hamas
chasing British cops down the street as the protestors chant "Free, free
Palestine." And keep in mind that the London cops have been dealing with this
for some time as the video was first posted on YouTube in April 2010. Our NFL
ref says Bill Brown would turn over in his grave if he was to see this, and we
agree 100 percent. Click
to view it. (10 Mins.)
• • • • •
It's a man-on-man tug-of-war pitting Canada against the U.S. with the Canuck on
the left in the dark green cammies. Place your bets on who wins, then click
to see if you can collect your winnings or have to pay up. (3 Mins.)
• • • • •
Speaking of tug-of-wars, see if you can
the winner between a modified John Deere drag tractor and an 1800s era steam
tractor. (4 Mins.)
• • • • •
Did you know you can make a working gun from Lego blocks? True. You can also
make magazines that hold plastic pellets that will allow you to fire the gun.
if we have piqued your interest. (2 Mins.)
There are several
books available on Amazon that show you how to construct these and other guns.
should take you to the appropriate page.
• • • • •
Are you familiar with the mystery of the "Slithering Rocks?" There is an area in
Death Valley called Racetrack Playa that has puzzled visitors for hundreds of
years. The area gets its name from the large flat stones that mysteriously
‘race’ around this barren dry lake bed. The rocks, some weighing as much as 600
pounds, slither across the ground leaving snake-like grooves in the hard, dry
stone. Some of the trails left by the moving rocks are thousands of feet long.
Well, it looks like the mystery of how they move has finally been solved. If you
are interested, watch
• • • • •
We found this excerpt from a
program of interest. It's a first-person account of what it's like to live in an
underwater habitat for two weeks. Give it a look and you may finding it
interesting as well. (4 Mins.)
• • • • •
How can you tell this little tyke is going to grow up and be a man and not a
woman? Answer: By how he
to a TV remote control. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
Have you ever heard of "Combat Juggling?" Neither have we, but it seems to draw
a huge crowd. See if you can
out how the combatants score a point. (9 Mins.)
• • • • •
We have no doubt that this elephant will eventually master the art of ribbon
twirling. Whether it can develop the
to leap off the ground like the Olympic athlete below is another question.
(Disregard the title of the clip; the poster apparently doesn't know the
difference between a ribbon and a hula hoop.) (3 Mins.)
• • • • •
Why is it that elephants get all the notoriety over their long memories? If I
was a King of the Beast I might feel slighted. Check out
short video received from Don Hale. (1 Min.)
• • • • •
Here's another one of those irresistible duckling rescue
that will no doubt result in good karma for the rescuer, if not a seat next to
St. Peter himself. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
Tired of playing with your cat or dog using a laser pointer? Here's a
Tape it to your pet's head and let the critter play with itself. (1 Min.)
• • • • •
Meet Igor, one of the luckiest dogs in the world.
what his owners did for him when they took a trip abroad and had to leave him
home. (3 Mins.)
• • • • •
If you've never seen a puppy that can catch a ball with its paws, watch
clip and you'll be able to say you have. (1 Min.)
• • • • •
All baseball fans should appreciate watching this 35-second clip, especially
those who follow the Oakland A's. It's not every day you see a ball team turn a
• • • • •
excellent Go-Pro production. If the guy was on a motorcycle it would be called
"canyon carving," although the same term may apply to jet skis. Does he risk
bouncing off one of Lake Powell's canyon walls at high speed? You bet.
a look. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
You may not want to watch this 18-second clip if you suffer from acrophobia (a
fear of heights). Question: Are these three kids who posed for a selfie atop a
Hong Kong skyscraper certifiably 51-50? You make the call. It makes us wonder
how many wannabe YouTube stars have died or been seriously injured in an attempt
to become an
• • • • •
We agree that the U.S. has lost (or is losing) its war on drugs, and that one of
the reasons is a lack of public education. Perhaps it's time once again that the
itself with Canada's anti-drug message in which spiders on drugs were used as an
example of how destructive a doper's lifestyle can be. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
What kind of an act
has amazed this judge on a Chinese talent show? It was a magical ballet
to watch the video sent in by Alice Murphy and see if it amazes you, too. (5
• • • • •
Think back to when you were a kid. Were you a hotshot with a yo-yo? Sure, you
could "Walk the Dog," "Go Around the World," maybe even "Rock the Cradle."
Compared to this six-year-old, however, you were a Zero. Watch
• • • • •
What happens when you attach a waterproof GoPro camera to the back of a dog that
is what happens. (35 Secs.)
• • • • •
If you are planning
on hiring an outfit to help move your household furnishings, check out
guys. Dirk Parsons says they seem to know what they are doing. (1 Min.)
Dirk also suggests
hiring this guy if all you want to do is load your bike in the back of a
15-second clip will show you why.
And last but not
least, Dirk recommends you hire the guy in
clip who can balance a motorcycle on his head if you want to load it on top of a
bus. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
Say what you want about the Amish, but they sure do know how to raise a barn.
And they are fast, too.
them raise this barn in 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
• • • • •
Behold the greatest invention yet from a man who was ahead of his time. Find
that hard to believe? Watch
clip. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
This week's Tip of the Week deals with soda cans that have been shaken. Here's a
simple way to ensure that they don't spray when you pop the top. Have a
• • • • •
John Wayne (1907-1979) made a number of short films during his life in which he
expressed his love and admiration for America. We can recall presenting two of
them here in the Farsider over the past half-dozen years or so, but this video
sent in by Steve Postier is one we have not seen until now, even though it was
posted on YouTube in 2010. Given the impact that Hollywood movie stars have on
the American psyche, the
could sure use more like men like The Duke today. (3 Mins.)
• • • • •
We thought we had kept up with all the popular flash mob videos over the past
few years, but here's one we somehow overlooked. It took place in Copenhagen's
central railroad station and was comprised of the Copenhagen Philharmonic
playing Ravel's Bolero. (Think Bo Derek in "10," guys).
• • • • •
This final video is
very profound and should be seen by every elderly person who has lost a friend
and/or loved one. Seriously. It's about five men whose average age is 81. The
short video is another one of those Asian public service videos sponsored by a
Chinese corporation, in this case the TC Bank of Taiwan. Trust us, it will be
three minutes of your time.
• • • • •
Pic of the Week