A Rastafarian (“Great Jah”) was parked next to me in the shopping center at Haven and Base Line in Rancho Cucamonga at lunchtime Monday, mon.
Rancho Cucamonga is not only the friendliest city in the Inland Valley (according to my newspaper’s unscientific reader survey) and a Tree City USA, it’s also an official Playful City USA, as this sign on Haven Avenue at 4th Street spotted by reader Bob Terry reveals. Check out the Playful City website. Anyway, looks like somebody’s jumping for joy.
I attended Wednesday’s Rancho Cucamonga City Council meeting because our RC reporter, Wendy Leung, is on vacation. Somebody ought to be there, I though.
Turned out to be pretty interesting, as the council passed the final version of rules regarding protests in the community (which happen now and then), over the protests of a few and to the confusion of many, including yours truly. Read the column here, and comment below if you like.
Sunday’s column (read it here) is about the national Wii bowling champions from Rancho Cucamonga’s James L. Brulte Senior Center.
I went to Wednesday’s RC council meeting because they would honor the team with plaques and I thought it would make a cute item. I interviewed three of the team members — first two, and later a third — in the lobby as they left the meeting. Also talked to two Senior Center employees who were also in the lobby. The fourth teammate seemed determined to stick it out in the meeting — he had more staying power than me, at least — so I left after an hour without speaking with him.
Anyway, the column item turned into a full-on essay, as sometimes happens. I wrote up some short items for the end but decided they would be anticlimactic and put ‘em aside for next week.
One item, though, will be too old by then. It’s probably too old now, for that matter. It won’t appear in print, but I’ll put it below.
* Two Pomona cops didn’t bat an eye Monday night when approached by a man in a domino mask. Could be because he was their server at Mix Bowl Cafe, they were on dinner break at the restaurant and it was Halloween.
It took only seven months, but Rancho Cucamonga recently replaced the directional sign that had no directional arrows at Archibald and Arrow. The previous version can be seen here. The sign was taken down within days of my February blog post and went back up again in late September. I hope no motorists have been driving aimlessly all this time.
There’s no place to buy compact discs at Victoria Gardens (although there’s a Best Buy across the street, if that counts). The closest thing to a record shop is this painted ad, artistically aged, for the nonexistent California Soul Records, which adorns a wall near the VG’s sheriff’s station a few yards north of Johnny Rockets.
This is one of many old signs at the open-air mall that add visual interest and mimic the idea of this being a real downtown with remnants of past businesses still visible. (A portion of another one, reading “Rugs,” is at top left.) I doubt if most people get the joke, but I like it.
I also wish there were a California Soul Records for me to shop at.
In November 2009, Jack Lam, the city manager of Rancho Cucamonga, and his wife, Linda, both enthusiastic travelers, vacationed in Antarctica.
Before they left, I suggested they pack a newspaper for our “Daily Bulletin on Vacation” feature. They did so, as this photo shows. Although the scene appears to be full daylight, the sun went down minutes later. Dig the crazy penguins!
This photo appeared in the newspaper after their return and I’m presenting it here to mark Lam’s retirement, effective today. (My column about Lam can be read here.)
When I saw Lam at the dedication of the Haven Avenue underpass shortly after his return, he quipped, “I was happy to go on assignment for you.” Since the Lams will next be traveling to Kenya and Rwanda, we await their next “Bulletin on Vacation” contribution.
A Comedy Central sitcom, “Workaholics,” is set at a fictional telemarketing firm, TelAmeriCorp., in nonfictional Rancho Cucamonga.
The stars, Adam DeVine and Anders Holm, recently produced a short spoof video for Fuel TV in which they mock-tout the attractions of Rancho Cucamonga, described as “conveniently located 38 miles east of Los Angeles.” (The video must contain the single most unattractive angle for Victoria Gardens.)
Proving there’s no hard feelings, the city’s redevelopment agency posted the video on its website, despite the description by the Fuel TV host of Rancho Cucamonga as “an industrial working-class city.” Uh, really?
Watch the video here.
“Rancho Cucamonga? It’s Cucamongo!!” the duo exclaim at the end.
A Google search for Looney Tunes references to Cucamonga (how many people can consider something like this part of their job duties?) turned up a “Did You Know?” page about Rancho Cucamonga from a tree service directory, of all places. Here’s the link.
I suspect all the “facts” aren’t 100 percent accurate. The trivia note that Frank Zappa made Cucamonga “his part-time residence for much of the ’60s and ’70s” makes it sound like he had a summer home there, when in reality he lived there about a year circa ’64. So caveat emptor — but much of the other info sounds right.