Ontario woman grills Brad Pitt on ‘Oprah’

Reader Nancy Bumstead said she was watching “Oprah” on Wednesday when a viewer from Ontario — our Ontario — named Christina asked a question of guest Brad Pitt via Skype video about his tattoos, with which the fan seemed, um, rather strangely interested. And knowledgeable.

Watch a YouTube video of the 2:13 encounter here.

Christina describes herself as a “forever fan” of Pitt’s of “about 17 years.” I love how “Oprah” shows Ontario on a map next to Christina’s face. It should be helpful when the restraining order comes through.

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Restaurant of the Week: Pittsburgh Broasted Chicken


This week’s restaurant: Pittsburgh Broasted Chicken and Subs, 669 Indian Hill Blvd. (at Holt), Pomona.

This restaurant opened a few months back north of the old Food 4 Less in a strip mall that is also home to Christy’s Donuts, a nail salon, 98 Cent Plus and a Vietnamese sandwich shop. The space’s previous occupant was the shortlived Sushi 4 U, which I liked to imagine was run by a Prince acolyte.

PBC, as I’m going to call it for brevity, was empty when I ventured in for a mid-afternoon meal this week. The interior appears clean and bright. You order at the counter. I think the owners are Korean American.

I got the 2 piece dinner plus a soda ($6.69). (It was only after ordering that I noticed “lunch specials” on the menu. D’oh! It’s tough trying to absorb a new menu while someone is waiting for you to order.)

They gave me my choice of pieces, so I went with a breast and thigh. You also have a choice of four styles: original, plain, lemon pepper or cajun. (Begging the question, what is the difference between original and plain?) I went with lemon pepper. The dinner comes with a side of slaw, potato salad, macaroni salad or baked beans; I went for the slaw.

The dinner was made to order and came out after 15 minutes. The meal was served in a basket that was heaped with potato squares, kind of like Wendy’s fries except in cubes. They were pretty good. The slaw was standard. There was a roll too.

As for the chicken, it was impressive. I have limited experience with broasted chicken — who doesn’t? — but the mysterious process of broasting somehow involves both pressure cooking and deep frying. As they say on this Chowhound thread, don’t try this at home. You can read a more official version at the official broasting website. Scroll down for an apt quote from a “West Wing” episode.

The PBC version of broasted chicken had crispy skin and very moist, flavorful meat, even if the lemon and pepper were too subtle for me. (Maybe lemon pepper, original and plain are all the same.)

The meal was a good deal for the money. All in all, a pleasant surprise.

PBC has also been reviewed by the IE Restaurants blog and by the Student in Pomona blog, which rates it No. 1 in Pomona, even above (gasp) Donahoo’s. Heresy!

I wouldn’t go that far, but if you like chicken, you ought to give PBC a try. The restaurant doesn’t deserve to be empty.

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Friday column preview

I was at the Chalk Art Festival in downtown Pomona a couple of weeks ago when Danny Holznecht of the Pomona Jaycees broke the news to me that the Pomona Christmas Parade was canceled. In 2007, you’ll recall, I was the 60th annual parade’s 60th grand marshal.

“You’re the last one,” Holznecht said.

Say it ain’t so!

City Hall pulled its funding and the Jaycees-run parade couldn’t go on without it. Find out more in Friday’s column.

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A retirement in Ontario

It’s time to say farewell to Brix, a police service dog with the Ontario Police Department. Not that you probably ever said hello to him, unless you were one of the 1,398 suspects he helped collar in his nine-year career.

The German Shepherd has retired from the force at age 11, or “70-something” in dog years, as Mayor Paul Leon put it when Brix was honored at Tuesday’s council meeting.

Tuesday’s meeting was not the final one for Jason Anderson, the councilman. He anticipates the Dec. 2 meeting will be his last.

Well, it’s good to space these farewells out.

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Fox Theater sign is back up!

The rotating sign atop the Fox Theater in Pomona — which no longer rotated, had burnt-out neon and scrawled graffiti — was taken down by crane last spring for repair. On Tuesday, the sign was returned to its perch high atop the Fox’s wedding-cake tower. Hooray!

Somebody missed a good-news photo op by not alerting the media (ahem) — making me wish our offices were still next door — but thankfully, the Metro Pomona blog was on the scene. So was the blog Ren’s Corner.

And we now have photos provided by developer Jerry Tessier on our Pomona Now blog.

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Wednesday column preview

Monday’s Pomona council meeting may or may not have been worth skipping Maureen Dowd’s Claremont appearance for, but it wasn’t bad. Also, I understand the room in which Dowd spoke filled up and several people, including my colleague Wes Woods, were unable to get in. At least in Pomona I could get a seat.

Well, read Wednesday’s column to find out how Norma Torres’ last meeting as mayor went.

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Traffic advisory continues in Montclair

Central Avenue above the 10 Freeway is now nice and smooth, as is Monte Vista Avenue, after recent repaving that narrowed lanes and choked traffic.

However, the lanes are not yet striped, only marked with those Post-It note-like temporary markers. Painting the lanes, whenever that occurs, could mean more inconvenience for motorists.

Thus, your cautious correspondent declines to lift his advisory to avoid Montclair. If you happen to live in Montclair, my advice is to stay below the 10. Repeat, stay below the 10. Thank you.

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Pomona council tonight

This will be the first post-election meeting and, as I understand it, the last full meeting for Norma Torres as mayor and George Hunter as a councilman.

I’m skipping the chance to see Maureen Dowd, the New York Times columnist, at Claremont McKenna College tonight (6:45 p.m. at the Athenaeum, admission free), so the meeting had better be a good one. In fact, now that I’ve typed that sentence, I’m beginning to wonder if I’m making the right choice. Oh well. Pomona calls.

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Jack Benny in Etiwanda


Jack Benny’s radio show made Cucamonga famous as part of the train station announcer’s cry, “Train leaving on Track 5 for Anaheim, Azusa and Cuuuucamonga!” Supposedly — according to an article on an Anaheim history website — this line was first heard on his Jan. 7, 1945 broadcast and it became a running gag, continuing when Benny transitioned to TV.

The three tiny communities loved the attention. Benny was made honorary mayor of all three a year later. He visited Anaheim at least twice, in 1947 and again in 1963. He was made an honorary citizen of the three communities in 1965, in a ceremony held in Azusa.

But did he ever visit Cucamonga? I can’t answer that. But it seems he did visit Etiwanda.

The accompanying photo was taken in either 1966 or 1967 at the Regina Winery. Gino Filippi, who sent it to me, said it was given to him by Mr. C. Boesen of Alta Loma. “The white-haired man opposite Mr. Benny is Tip Browne, GM of the Regina Grape Products Company. I think the event was a promotional event for the grand opening of the Regina Winery Restaurant, ‘California’s first winery restaurant.’ ”

Anaheim, Azusa and Etttttiwanda!

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