Wednesday, March 24, 2010

PG&E and Valley Heat

image The San Joaquin Valley is a hot, dry place.  No doubt.  There are dust storms, allergies, and Valley Fever to weed out the weak.  Another test is this.  Can you afford your electricity bill?  Well, can ya?

It seems some valley folks are bending the ear of Pacific Gas & Electric Co. – PG&E to convince them that valley rate payers are tired of subsidizing electricity for city slickers.  The Kern County Taxpayers Association is really helping us out by fighting the fight.  The extra special part about the whole thing is that it’s pissing people off in the Bay Area and along the coast. 

Oh yeah.  We like that.

Read the article in the San Francisco Chronicle.  Make sure to read the comments.  Ain’t it funny how those that had their rates subsidized by us don’t want to subsidize our rates?   There’s another article in the Bakersfield Californian too.

Oh, it will be a fun fight to watch.  I hope we finally win one.

Saturday, March 20, 2010


I needed some worms for my garden.  Today, I went to the local hardware store to grab a bucket.  They were all out of worms.  I think I know where I can get a great, big, fat worm…

image…Washington D.C.  Congressman Jim Costa announced he will vote yes for the health care bill.  WORM!

I know where to score another worm…


…Sacramento, CA.  State Senator Roy Ashburn was arrested recently for DUI while driving a State vehicle with a passenger in the car.   Oh, he’s been a worm for years.  He’s been a worm since he was my County Supervisor.  WORM!

I guess that’s what it takes to be a politician.

I’ll stick with the real deal.  They at least do the job they are hired to do and cost me a lot less money and freedom.  WORMS!image

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Local Food

If you could recommend 3 eateries that represented where you live what would they be?

imageThis is tough for me in Bakersfield.   There are a bunch for me to pick from; but I need to narrow the field to 3 (with absolutely no chains).  Here’s my recommendations:

1.  Wool Growers – Basque food.  Loads of food.  Loads of socializing.  Loads of atmosphere.  The Basque came to Kern County to raise sheep.  Many Basque hotels and restaurants thrived near the train station to cater to immigrants arriving in Bakersfield.  Some establishments are still here with a rich history and loyal clientele.


2.  Dewar’s – Ice cream and candy shop.  This place has been around for awhile (1909).  All the locals know about chews, Black & Whites, and George’s Specials.


3.  Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace – Entertainment and food.  I picked the Crystal Palace because so many people think of Buck Owens when they think of Bakersfield.  The entertainment is great the food is alright.  However, I know many enjoy the gigantic chicken fried steaks.image


Other finalists include:  Mexicalli, Zingo’s, Milt’s, Bill Lee’s Bamboo Chopsticks, Fish Lips, the Highland Cafe, Westchester Bowl, 24th Street Cafe.

When you’re passing through Bakersfield on your way to somewhere else, stop in and spend some money.  We appreciate your visit.

If you can come up with 3 representatives for where you live, let me know.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Ralph and the Giant Tomato

(Absolutely nothing like James and the Giant Peach.)

DSC_0993_3390Since I planted a butt load of tomatoes, I needed to visit the giant tomato for a photo outing.  Ralph has a giant tomato.  Really.  He does.  Ralph is Italian.  Really.  He’s from Italy and he has a giant tomato.  Ralph also has a restaurant in Bakersfield called Frugatti’s.   He and his wonderful family have a great restaurant and catering service.  The giant tomato is the centerpiece to the entrance of his Italian eatery.DSC_0994_3391We went to have a wonderful meal; but I wanted to take some pictures of Ralph’s giant tomato before the sun went down and some more photos after the lights came on.  DSC_1010_3407 We always have a wonderful meal whenever we go to Frugatti’s.  Always.  The food is great and the place always seems to be buzzing with happy customers.  I prefer to eat at a place that has the clatter of dishes and chatter of people enjoying themselves.  The music is always great too – Rat Pack, Clooney, Prima, Damone, etc.  Friday and Saturday nights are extra special though.  Bob Iorio is at Frugatti’s.  Bob plays the accordion and Bob rocks!  Thankfully, I paced myself on this night.  I had room for triple chocolate cheesecake.  Mama Mia!  They make a Reese’s peanut butter cup cheesecake too.  Dieters beware.DSC_1017_3414Take a look at the menu.  There are tomatoes everywhere.  Tomatoes mark menu items that are Frugatti’s favorites.  Tomatoes are on the logo.  And there are most definitely tomatoes in the dishes to choose from. 

Maybe you’ll be inspired to visit Bakersfield before the heat arrives.  Even if you wait until the summer, Ralph keeps it nice and cool at Frugatti’s.DSC_1025_3422Thanks for keeping it cool, Ralph.  (Grazie per tenerlo fresco, Raffaele.  Per inciso, hai qualche foto di Bob?).


Here’s a gardening challenge for those that follow Maybelline’s Garden:  Ralph is planning on building an arbor to follow the arch of Frugatti’s doorway.  He would like some kind of vine to grow on the ironwork.  The area is shaded for most of the day; but, POW!  It really gets hit at sundown.  If you have a suggestion for a durable vine that would thrive in zone 9, forward your suggestions to me.  Thanks.DSC_0994_3391