Thursday, November 06, 2008


San Diego County has no regional fire-fighting system; the only metropolitan county in California not to have one. Each rural town has a volunteer fire department, manned by local business people, so until a fire reaches the San Diego city limits it is not being fought by professional, fully trained firefighters. Well, the California Department of Forestry has very professional and well trained firefighters, and some of them are stationed in San Diego County, but they are stretched very thin. And I do not want to denigrate those volunteers, they do yeoman work and are very good.

The counties to the north take a very dim view of us over this situation, since their agencies are always called upon when we have major fires, leaving them short in the event that a fire starts up there.

A proposition was on this year’s ballot to charge each rural homeowner $52/year to establish and fund a regional agency so that the rural part of the county would be better protected. This is an urgent need that has been well established by disastrous fires in two out of the last five years. Just $52 per homeowner per year. The measure failed.

California the state, however, passed a measure to fund a high speed rail line to Northern California using unproven technology and to serve an unestablished number of riders to the tune of $9.9 billion dollars. It won't cost anything though, because it's a "bond issue" not a tax.

Another measure that did not fail was a proposition to assure chickens the right to live more comfortably before they are slaughtered; to assure that they will have room to spread their little wings before they are flung into a machine that will pull their heads off.

Another measure that passed was one to remove from gays and lesbians the same right that the rest of us have, the right assured them by a court ruling in June; the right to get married to the person they love.

Seems Californians don't want anything they have to pay for, and they care more about chickens than they do about some kinds of people.

That thing about the "bond issue" not costing anything was snark.

My grandmother used to drive my father nuts with "These biscuits didn't cost me anything to make, because I already had all of the ingredients." Dad would start sputtering and you would look at Granny; she would be absolutely straight-faced, but her eyes would be twinkling.

Update the second:
Granny was a very cool old lady. Us kids went to her house for dinner when the parents went for a night out. She always served the same thing: hamburger patties so overcooked they were crunchy, sticky white rice, and frozen peas. That was our favorite experience and we always bugged the folks to have a night out so we could spend the evening at Granny's.

She also took the turkey carcass home after holidays and came back the next weekend with deep dish turkey pie that was to die for. No doubt it didn't cost anything either.

She was "lavender and lace" and just fun to be around.


  1. Well, the turkey didn't cost her anything if she took it home from your parents, now did it?
    So do you make deep dish turkey pie with your leftovers? I usually make turkey tetrazzini, ala The Joy of Cooking, page 218 (paperback, spiralbound edition). I promise that it is to die for!

  2. Anonymous8:51 AM

    if I have any leftovers, I make turkey soup, turkey sandwitches, (cold and hot). I haven't tried turkey pie yet, but thsat would be a good one.

    And no, the turkey is a freebie, but the rest would only be if she grew them, perhaps.

    And the notion that "bonds don't cost anything" has gotten us is a heap 'o trouble. Yeah it costs in lost revenue from the state budget, whish could go to other things, like... gee, a regional fire fighting system. No wonder we're screwed up here.

  3. I remember when I was "doing" the Thanksgiving turkey that it was upsetting that I didn't have a mother-in-law to take the carcass home. I often put it in the garage "for later". (Garages are very cold in Idaho in November, until there was a very unusual warm spell - that was not pretty. Smelled bad, too).
    Later I got lucky - the kids grew up and had their own houses, and THEY took the carcass home with them. I didn't always get pie, though.

  4. Anonymous11:46 AM

    Even luckier if you came to the children's house and didn't have to worry about any of it, carcass or not. Still didn't get any pie...

  5. Anonymous7:54 PM

    Nope, no pie, not from me either. Humm, did do make lots of soup though, and always took mom some.