Sure, Irvine is the seventh-safest large city in the nation, according to FBI figures, but don't think for a moment that it's devoid of crime. Perusing the Irvine World News' police log, I came across a couple of shocking offenses that residents reported to the local authorities.
I thought of Joe Friday of TV's "Dragnet" when I read the terse language of the entries.
The first, an act of vandalism, said simply: "Hair mousse left on brick driveway."
The second involved a "6-year-old [who] hit reporting party's son's Gameboy with a baseball bat."
No word on whether the 6-year-old is still at large.
A freeway fast-breaker: In his new book, "Shaq Talks Back," Laker star Shaquille O'Neal admits he loves to drive fast--off the court, I mean.
He writes that once, around 3:30 in the morning, "I made it to Pasadena in 9 minutes from where I lived . . . on the 101 to the 134."
Shaq lives in Beverly Hills. Maybe he meant it took him nine minutes from the time he boarded the Ventura Freeway (101). Or maybe he's adopted that Southern California custom of exaggerating the brevity of freeway trips.
Anyway, he says that a few days later, after another NBA player was killed while speeding, "I traded in my Ferrari."
I don't ever plan to drive a freeway at 3:30 a.m. but I feel better about the big guy's conversion.
From Shaq to shack: In Australia, writes Peter Tupman of Claremont, "I came across a sign to the Lennox Point Hotel, which I am sure is very nice. However, the position of the sign was somewhat unfortunate (see photo)."
As for the pictured structure, I would say in its defense that I saw no evidence of mousse on any of the entryways.
Speaking of questionable attention-getters: Curt Blanchard of Redondo Beach wonders whether one tire seller should have chosen his words more carefully (see accompanying).
Slowing down: Near downtown L.A., my colleague Dave Barton observed a car covered with writing advertising the fact that the driver was a "speedtrap lawyer" who would fight your "radar ticket" for you.
Barton notes that the speedtrap solicitor, himself, was taking no chances: "His was the only vehicle in sight observing the speed limit and he was in the slow lane."
Back to Stupid Driver Tricks: Robin and Sally Shidler point out that sometimes "it takes two" to qualify for this category.
They saw a motorist on a freeway in San Bernardino who was "craning his head to read what looked like the L.A. Times sports section. It was being held in front of the rear-view mirror by his passenger. Surprisingly, the driver was keeping up with traffic, and in his own lane."
I'm just happy the driver wasn't getting angry over something T.J. Simers wrote.
miscelLAny: Vickie Elson of L.A. noticed that cigarette prices evidently are on the increase (see photo). Those tobacco settlements must really be having an effect.