A Fresno Story

I recently saw the front of Fresno High School and was shocked outta my gourd – the ugly, low-lying newer buildings built in front, blocking the view of the magnificent old brick auditorium, have been demolished and the original appearance of the front entrance to the school restored. It now looks like it once did when Cher, who suffered from dyslexia, was laughed out of class as a failure. Her prospects for a happy life living big dreams in the Land of Al Radka not that likely, she decided to flee southbound down the Golden State Highway at the age of 16, never to trod past the Fresno High auditorium again. Landing in Hollywood as an aspiring actress, she dated Warren Beatty until a chance meeting in a Palm Springs bar with Sonny Bono, who was only interested in if she could cook and clean. She could do neither, but Sonny discovered she was the missing voice to his songs and together they became a 1960s hit machine and soon later a television variety show team. Divorced during the television heyday, Sonny and Cher split paths and Cher went on to become American showbiz royalty, Sonny a conservative Republican politician (whose Congressional career and life ended in a tragic skiing accident), which proves all you need to do to succeed is get out of Fresno. In the least, it’s probably a smart move.

Holy Happy Days!

I feel weird every time I say “Merry Christmas” ever since the phrase got politicized. I’m old school – Merry Christmas goes with all the yummy imagery – Santa Claus, egg nog, Christmas trees, Christmas lights, caroling, laughter, presents for children, crackling fireplaces, getting dressed up for a special dinner, burping after dinner while petting the dog by the TV tuned to old time movies. Also ruined by politics is “Happy Holidays,” which is seen as the “anti-Christmas” greeting by the same people who ruined “Merry Christmas.” Poor ol’ “Happy Holidays” – such a bad rap. It is the perfect seasonal salutation for cordial settings. Anyone say “Seasons Greetings” anymore? Was it ever said, per se? That one looks perfect in hand lettering but doesn’t have much ring to it said out loud…

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