First, some old business. Reader Jack Shaughnessy demanded to know how I could "miss a gaffe" in my own paper. He found it in one of the reprinted front pages in The Times' "Stories That Shaped the Century" millennium series (see accompanying).
Who cares if the typo in the headline--it said "trial" instead of "trail"--occurred in the March 26, 1911, issue of The Times? There's no statutory limit on such things.
Well, I complained, and the careless copy editor--now 123 years old and still employed here--has been suspended for a week.
HARDLY A COOL ANALYSIS: Sure it's been frosty lately. But Rick Tello wonders if "hot" was the correct word for the online weather forecast he came across (see accompanying).
FLAKY MUSICIANS? I never would have believed it until I saw an ad that Bob Murtha passed along (see accompanying).
EXPOSING 1999: In terms of public nudity, last year had its moments.
In February, Ralphs employees in Huntington Beach reported a group of streakers running through the store. In May, sheriff's deputies in Valencia found three naked men playing saxophones on a hill near the California Institute of the Arts.
In June, Penthouse model Jennie J bared her breasts before the Hermosa Beach City Council, which was considering reversing a ban against public nudity on the city's beaches. (The stunned council shelved the issue.)
Anyway, after all that exposed skin, I was a bit surprised that I didn't hear about more people celebrating Y2K in their birthday suits (if only because of computer breakdowns at the dry cleaners).
Fred Merrill of Inglewood did, however, notice a story about four female streakers in Whitefish, Mont., on New Year's Eve. Three were arrested and one got away. Police said they had "a good description" of the fugitive.
Merrill wonders what the wanted poster will show.
NO MORE FELIZ, PLEASE: It's been almost two weeks since Christmas, but some Y-107 radio listeners are still humming "Feliz Navidad," whether they want to or not. That's because the station played the song for more than 24 hours last month. The bizarre marathon was staged while the station was changing to a Spanish-language format.
This sort of thing has happened before. When classical KFAC-FM (92.3) became KKBT ('The Beat') in 1989, it broadcast the sound of a heart beating for several hours.
When KXEZ-FM ("Easy 103") became disco/dance KIBB in 1996, the move was signaled by several minutes of sounds of clanging machinery.
In 1997, when rock station KSCA-FM (101.9) went Spanish language, the new owners played a laugh track for 12 straight hours.
Which reminded Jim Elder of the annoyed reaction a rock station received when it replaced a classical music station in New York City and opened with . . . Chuck Berry's "Roll Over Beethoven."
In the novel "Little Sister," the narrator talks of driving through Bel-Air and passing "a big white two-storied Monterey house that must have cost $70,000."
Of course, Raymond Chandler wrote the book in 1949.