Richard Beene

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    By Richard Beene
    Tuesday, Apr 15 2014 05:05 PM

    REAL ESTATE: How many homes do you think are for sale in Bakersfield for $2 million or more? A simple search of the Trulia real estate website found five in that range, starting at $2.3 million and soaring to a $2.9 million mansion boasting seven bedrooms, eight baths and 16,000 square feet of living space. Meanwhile, an old home I have admired downtown that sold for $220,000 in 2010 is back on the market listed at $775,000. What is this, 2006?

    STRAYS: The throwaway culture that exists in our society unfortunately extends to pets, and Kern County seems to be ground zero for stray animals. Recently, an emaciated, but very sweet, female gray cat showed up on my porch. She was hungry for food, for water and most of all, for attention. I...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    CLEANUP: Hats off to all the local people who fanned out around town Saturday for Keep Bakersfield Beautiful and the Great American Cleanup. I spotted hundreds of folks about town participating, and city crews were busy on the bike path...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    GATES: There is a mini-storm brewing in the Bakersfield County Club area where some residents are asking the county for permission to gate off parts of the neighborhood. The gates would be installed at Dalehurst Drive and Wingfoot,...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    PETS: The way some people treat their pets, like disposable diapers, is beyond disheartening, but every once in a while, we hear something that gives us hope. Over at the city's Animal Care Center, veterinarian Robert Duquette sent me this...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    MOUSE WAR: John Pryor sent me a note tipping me off to the great Kern County "mouse war" of 1926. It's such an odd story I simply must share it. Turns out Kern County had experienced several years of drought and by 1926, the Buena Vista...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    DOWNTOWN: Not sure about you, but I plan to spend this Friday downtown for the first First Friday of Spring. Among the attractions, both Uricchio's Trattoria and the Wall Street Cafe have new appetizers, The Padre has revamped its menu,...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    CHAVEZ: The legacy of Cesar Chavez has been in the spotlight this week — a new biopic movie on his life opened along with National Cesar Chavez Day — but is the union he founded still relevant? Some critics say no, and they say his...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    FRACKING: I received this note from a reader who wanted to weigh in on the debate over hydraulic fracturing. Listen to Michael Jacobsen's words: "Greetings from Bismarck, N.D.! As an online subscriber to The Californian, I found it amusing...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    FRACKING: I had to chuckle at the recent letter to the editor from an Oakland-based environmental group that insists on trying to link hydraulic fracturing to earthquakes. Never mind that countless government studies have discounted this...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    PADRE: An ugly incident Saturday night at The Padre Hotel triggered two letters to the editor from women worrying about their safety at the bar. This is the kind of press that people like Padre owner Brett Miller hate, and he told me...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    Mutts: I stopped by the Healthy Bakersfield Expo at the Convention Center this weekend where I met Hooch, an adorable French mastiff who was hanging around the Marley's Mutts dog rescue booth. When Hooch was found, someone had cut off both...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics and people

    Goodall: Bakersfield College scored a coup when it announced that Dr. Jane Goodall would speak there on Tuesday, April 1. Goodall is widely known as the world's foremost expert on chimpanzees and for her multi-decade study of wild...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    FRACKING: The recent incident involving Moo Creamery and a petition to ban hydraulic fracking is part of a larger effort that could have serious consequences for energy rich areas like Kern County. There is little doubt that...

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