Richard Beene

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

    By Richard Beene
    Sunday, Aug 24 2014 04:50 PM

    SCAM Here is yet another scam that leverages our obsession with social media. A friend's nephew is vacationing in Mexico, and the lad mentions it on Facebook. Someone sees this, and calls the nephew's grandmother (how he got the number, I don't know) posing as a Mexican lawyer, saying her grandson was in jail, and he needed $100,000 to get out. The grandmother, wisely, checked on the safety of her nephew before wiring money to the would-be thief.

    TRASH Hats off to the city Solid Waste Division, which will partner with Sean Battle and Garden Pathways' volunteers to clean up a stretch of Fairfax Drive that is littered with discarded furniture. Said Sal Moretti, city solid waste superintendent: "The city will provide a trash truck and...

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

    MUSIC: I stopped by a free concert at Imbibe Wine and Spirits this weekend and was wowed by the vocals of Emily Danger, a band whose lead vocalist, Emily Nicholas, hails from Bakersfield but now lives in Brooklyn. Her concert before a...

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

    SHOOTING: The shooting of an unarmed man in Ferguson, Mo., and the unrest and rioting that followed has triggered a lot of soul searching about behavior by both the police and regular citizens. I found this advice about "how to avoid being...

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

    HOME: If you ever doubt the goodness that exists in this community, notes like the following should serve as a wake-up call. Amanda Vallette and her husband are from Edmonton, Alberta, and were touring the United States on motorcycles when...

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

    YOGA: This is for all you yoga fanatics out there: New research shows that yoga really doesn’t do much for overall muscle strength or cardiovascular fitness. That’s according to a study published in The New York Times that followed two...

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

    OUTLETS: I stopped by the Outlets of Tejon the other day and left impressed with the design, location, convenience and of course, the retailers. These are outlet stores after all, but the Tejon Ranch Company did a remarkable job with the...

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

    OVERHEARD: The VIP opening of the Outlets of Tejon on Wednesday evening was a huge success, at least judging from the crowd that paid $25 each to get a sneak peek. One friend likened it to “a big party” even though she was stranded on...

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

    FRACKING: Keep an eye on a movement in Colorado to restrict hydraulic fracturing, the oil and gas extraction method that has led to a boom in production across the country, including here in Kern County. There may be two initiatives on the...

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

    HOUSING: The housing rebound continues with its fits and starts, and now comes word that a slowdown may be underway. On the national level, The Wall Street Journal notes that home prices rose 9.3 percent in May compared to the same period...

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

    HOUSING: Another sign that we are far from recovering from the recession came this week when it was revealed that the share of Americans who own homes had dipped to its lowest level in almost 20 years. The Commerce Department said just 64...

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

    SCAM: More on those telephone scams going on around town. From Alice Merenback: "Today, I received 11 phone calls (obviously their machine jammed because it was the same message each time). The caller had a very strong foreign accent and...

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

    TRAGEDY: Horrible news out of Cabo San Lucas, where a Bakersfield man was severely injured in a zip-lining accident. Brian Hodges and his wife, Shimeaka, were in Cabo celebrating a year of marriage when Brian broke his neck after slamming...

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

    PLEDGE: Kati Hartnett McKeown, who works in the district office of Rep. Kevin McCarthy, noted this as she was driving with her 6-year-old son: "Jake just said the Pledge of Allegiance to a flag flying on a pole by a building as we were...

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