Addicted to Facebook

The first time I bought a totally portable battery-operated radio, I believed I’d gone to Heaven. Even though I was able to receive only one station, KFUN-AM, I enjoyed listening to the Game of the Day as I delivered papers on my Optic route, which comprised two streets across the tracks, Railroad (which we call Tough Street), Grand and parts of First and Second.

I taped the small radio to the handlebars and got fairly good reception. That made me a Brooklyn Dodger fan, as that team was on the air most often.

And I thought, way back in 1952 that sound technology had reached the highest peaks.

That was long before tiny, yet powerful, things like cell phones came along. And with them came something called Facebook, which I happily admit, has obsessed many, including and especially me.

I’m addicted. Day after day, I come across lots of drivel; if it’s not someone wanting to sell us something, it’s another person hoping to convert us.

Most of my life, I’ve been addicted to the groan. That’s what follows a horrible attempt at humor. Please realize that when someone attempts a joke, people usually laugh out of courtesy, or because “that’s the thing to do.”

A friend with whom I taught many summer journalism classes at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff explained all about the making of kidney pies (I kidney you not!) My friend Martin wrote as if kidney were something edible. Then he gave the prices people in places like Puerto Rico and Jamaica pay for such pies.

And he called his research “The Pie Rates of the Caribbean.” Can there be any pun more groan-worthy than that one?

Another friend presented a photo of Leonard Nimoy, of Star Trek. The message was, “It’s hard to tell from this angle, but Spock actually has three ears: The left ear, the right ear, and the final front ear.”

How much more of these atrocious puns can a person take? Stick around: The worst is yet to come.

Another person forwarded a drawing of a pair of dressing room doors for the character Hamlet. The door on the left contains a sign: “2B”; the one on the right reads “Not 2-B,” which is probably the way Shakespeare would have labeled each door.

• • •

The Optic’s weekly Thumbs feature received a bit of reaction Friday, shortly after the newspaper hit the streets. On his morning talk show, Joseph Baca of Radio KFUN, referred to the three thumbs down that appeared on our editorial page.

Although each item was a thumb down, Baca gave them his own thumbs up. The item that drew the most attention was our mention of hundreds of tires strewn around the Camp Luna area, near the site of the old city dump. We mentioned heaps of used, damaged, rotting tires, some of which were bundled together to keep them in one place.

Many other tires are strewn in all directions. The Optic’s thumbs down mentioned that such dumping is illegal, extremely unsanitary and possibly hazardous. It seems obvious that whoever dumped them was hoping to avoid paying a fee, and instead took the tires directly to the nearby dump.

Baca applauded our thumbs entries. But before ending his program, Baca said he’d received a phone call from “some lady” who explained that the tires hadn’t exactly been dumped at the site but placed there in order to help police with training.

That explanation seems plausible — until we question what kind of training the police would be conducting. Would they mount the tires on fast-moving vehicles so cops could practice shooting out tires during high-speed chases?

The illegal act of dumping the tires — at a site far from the shooting range that police use just doesn’t sound credible. If police were indeed planning to “practice” with the worn-out tires, wouldn’t someone have moved the tires closer, or even inside, the shooting range to the north?

Despite the anonymous woman’s implausible explanation as to the purpose of the tire-o-rama event near the dump, we believe the public needs to be informed at the beginning as to the purpose of the dumped tires.

It would be helpful if we could discover how long the tires have been in those several places, how long they’ll remain, and whether it’s OK for residents to donate tires to the site.

The public also would like to know more about the time and method of disposal of the tires when the presumed “police training” is completed, and — more importantly — whether the dumpers were merely trying to avoid a disposal fee.

• • •

It didn’t take long for my teenaged granddaughter to stop reading a book that had to have been written by the cliché champion of the century.

In the first few pages, Carly came across the following sentences: “He nodded his head,” “She shrugged her shoulders” and “He wore a happy smile on his face.”

To this we ask, what can one nod besides a head, what can we shrug besides our shoulders, can a smile ever be unhappy, and where else would one wear that smile?

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