Witticisms, Criticisms, From the Best Writers In Lamorinda - You!

Patchers had a lot to say this week, weighing in on topics ranging from the safety of BioSludge for home use to the future of newspapers and... (gulp) Patch!

Cool week underway with a couple of shakers to get our attention, fine weather, sports, a prowler or two and then - BadaBing - news of further layoffs and consolidation at a local newspaper.

Announcement of continued changes at made several Patches and lit a fire under commenters, who wanted to talk about the decline of newspapers in general, the decline of the CCTimes and Patch - and its predicted decline.

Everything was getting pinged this week, from the rumored arrival of the to (who knew?) and just about everything else under the sun. As we do every week, we picked some of the pithiest commentary and highlight for your perusal.

Let's start with what we characterized as a rumor that Moraga would soon be getting a McDonalds restaurant - a rumor it turns out virtually everyone has heard.

"Gross." - Fanny

"...Great news if it happens. Town Manager needs to know the Bruzzone family better, they have never "validated" any new business coming into their center. Just pick up the phone and call McDonald's direct for an answer. Also, why assume Mac is taking the Shell station when the corner is the preferred site for a fast food/drive thru restaurant. In any case it will continue to stretch the spending dollar between Moraga Center and Rheem Valley Center ; one gets better while to other remains overbuilt and lags behind. Mac and Jack vs. Burger King, Taco Bell & Nations. Let the games begin." - Spencer

"Hard to see any fast food place drawing more people to that center than a Safeway and CVS already do. "Gross" seems a little over the top. I'd be surprised if this really is more than a rumor; my understanding is McD's need to bring in a lot of business for it to be worthwhile for corporate and the franchisee. (Skipping the debate about the CUP for now.)" - Tony Rodriguez

"Oh come on Moraga, can't we do better?" - Tina Chambers


And then there was our foray into the field of BioSolids and their use in the garden and, man, is that a sticky subject:

"I have used biosolids compost for 20 years in my home flower and vegetable gardens and on my lawn, and it works GREAT! Nothing works better. Let me hasten to add, too, that my professional career has been spent making biosolids compost and promoting its use. So I have a bias. But I believe in it, because it WORKS, and the biosolids-fertilized earth supports abundant yields . The crisis of our world is NOT biosolids, but the impoverishment of our soil. No less than complete recycling of our human-generated organic matter is an appropriate response to the challenge of this crisis. I save my fight for a real human risk; I rail against french fries in our schools." - William Toffey

"I also believe in and use biosolids and love it -especially on our tomatoes. We've studied the science of biosolids for decades alongside demonstrating safety. They even have amazing protective powers.  They are the a local, sustainable, renewable option (critical as we are running out of phosphorus) alternative to synthetic (including petrochemical) fertilizers. Biosolids that go back to farms and gardens also help fight climate change by sequestering carbon that can generate carbon credits (not true when it's burned as a fuel). It is critical to understand that presence does not mean the plants will uptake that material (peer-reviewed science here showing that use of biosolids REDUCES metals uptaken in plants compared to control (that took up More metals!) Finally, if you think buying something else without sewage sludge in it is the answer, think again. Here you'll see that biosolids compost has the same amount stuff as other organic amendments - actual data included. But, biosolids has lots and lots of good stuff inside too cause it comes from us and all the vitamins and great food that we eat. The plants love vitamins and grow like crazy cause it's good stuff! Even has probiotic powers!" - Deirdre Bingman


From Burgers and BioSolids to BANG - - and their continued restructuring - which unleashed a huge comment flow and discussion about the future of newspapers and Patch of all things.

"I guess it's another sad sign of the times." - Maureen Addiego

"I follow the irony in your post, but it's really not sad at all. The CC Times has evolved to be one pervasive, editorial rather than reporting on local news. As an added bonus, they graciously sponsor the most obnoxious telemarketing and junk mail campaigns in our area to hound former subscribers. In my mind, it's about time for the CC Times to fail once and for all. It's not that print media is dead, but they've missed the mark with their brand of journalism." - Pacman

"Newspapers should have lead the internet revolution years ago but could not get out of their own way due to their heavy manufacturing infrastructure. They owned most of the content then. Tech upstarts that had no idea where to head figured it out and now lead the way in communications and news. Newspapers don't own as much of that content today but they still have the heavy manufacturing and delivery infrastructure." - Phil Simmons


And on the arrival of a small that rolled through Lamorinda and had people talking about "the Big One:"

"Welcomed us to Moraga on our first night after moving from Oakland. That Hayward Fault just reminding us that it's still underfoot." - Steve

"No ridiculous photos of East Coast people looking hysterical like most websites were running yesterday with the AP story about the VA/DC earthquake? From the photos, it looked like people were watching Godzilla attack America." - Divalent Daddy

"The real world of the post Hayward Fault Earthquake will chaos.
It will probably happen on a cold and rainy night. Only two cops and a small crew at the firehouses. The tunnel will fail, the overpass at El Curtola and the 680 will fail. All entrances and exits for Lamorinda will be closed. We will be on our own. All emergency responders will be headed for the major infrastructures of the surrounding areas; Walnut Creek, Concord, Oakland, etc. The National Guard is in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the rescue equipment. If it happens in the dry season, May through November the fires will be all consuming. The towns will burn to the ground. Water needs pumps that run on electricity. No electricity no gas no pumps no water to the hydrants." - Usual Suspect

"...and Zombies. Don't forget the Zombies." - Nicholas

"And there's another one." - Amanda (alerting everyone to the arrival of an aftershock!)

"Looting in Lamorinda. Oooh, feel the breakdown of civilization as Orindans brave barbed wire and anti-Mercedes traps to tiptoe into the wine cellars of privileged survivors with the foresight to stash a good pinot grigio in time for the meltdown." - Danielle

"We have lived in Moraga for just about a month now (moved from Hercules) and completely forgot about our proximity to the Hayward fault. Keeps you on your toes and giving me motivation to put together a earthquake supply kit. Interesting first day to school. Wonder if the kids had a drill today?" - Ed Sharp

We loved this exchange between Divalent Daddy and Chris Nicholson:

"I grew up in the South near the Gulf and learned to be prepared because of hurricanes. While hurricanes, unlike earthquakes, offer the advantage of preparation time, it's still important to be ready.

I have an emergency generator (operates off natural gas but if the gas lines are ruptured/inoperative then it runs off propane) that powers up a small guest room attached to my garage. The guest room has a mini-refrigerator & a microwave. I have 14 days of MREs for each member of my family. Plus, thankfully, I love SPAM so I have plenty of that stuff on hand. (In fact, one can never have enough SPAM.) I also have 21 days worth of bottled water for my family. I have a satellite phone with a solar powered battery charger. (Satellite phones are a must have if you do any boating as well.) I rarely let my vehicles fall below half a tank of gas. I always have some cash as ATMs don't work well without electricity. The ATM lesson I learned the hard way after a hurricane that wiped out power for nearly 7 days. Everything was cash only. I was scraping together pennies by the time power got restored." - DD

To which Chris responded:

"DD: Your set up is too bulky. I have a small tool box with only two items: a crowbar and a slip of paper with your address written on it. Seriously, though, that's impressive preparation! I am envious. It reminds me of the Twilight Zone episode where the neighbors all try to talk (and ultimately force) their way into the shelter of the one neighbor who planned ahead." - Chris Nicholson (great one).


And on our yarn about thieves making off with large chunks ($30,000 worth) of a , there were these zingers:

"Try to sell that on Craigslist." - Betty Buginas

"I have the gear in my garage. Trying to finalize a deal with Verizon....." - Bryan


And on that note, we'll leave you. It was a good week. Another underway. Good luck to us all.


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