Obesity: According to a new survey, many parents believe their children are thinner than they are. A study published in Pediatrics (and reported in The New York Times) says more than half of parents of overweight and obese children totally underestimated their weight. Said one researcher: "They're in denial." Added the Times: "The reasons for the misunderstanding are not known, but the scientists suggest that they news media presents a stereotypical picture of overweight children as severely obese and this distorts parents' understanding."
Trash: Lisa Prudhomme witnessed some behavior on the Panorama Bluffs that leaves you wondering about how people were raised. "I just have to share this with my fellow citizens," she wrote. "Again, as I was walking on the Panorama Bluffs I thought I would pick up some litter. As if the litter and trash aren't bad enough, piggy people are worse. As I approached a family sitting on one of the pathway benches, they watched me nearing them as I was putting trash in a bag. They quickly got up to leave, leaving their fast food trash (cups, wrappers, napkins, etc.) right where they were sitting. Their car was parked at the curb and they quickly loaded up their kids and were gone before I could say anything, leaving more trash in the gutter. I couldn't believe it! Are people really that ignorant and disgusting? I guess so, because this wasn't the only time I've witnessed such disregard and stupidity. With that being said, those of us that choose right over wrong will always lead by example."
"House of Cards," original Netflix programming starring Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright, is some of the hottest TV on these days and provides plenty of fodder for water cooler chatter. The series depicts Spacey as an ambitious and cruel House majority whip who rises to become vice president. Last Friday Spacey appeared on "Good Morning America," where the real House majority whip, our own Kevin McCarthy, appeared in a tongue-in-cheek video from the whip's office with a picture of Spacey behind him. Spacey said he shadowed McCarthy before the series to fully understand how the whip office operates.
Memories: Linda Meadows Polston wrote that her mother grew up on Terrace Way where Baldwin Road dead-ends into it. "She has always told me about an old Chinese cemetery behind her house. She said it was very interesting as they would burn incense, leave rice cakes and other food, and other items for the deceased person on his journey. They would finish by giving everyone a nickel wrapped in colored paper. My mom and the other neighborhood kids would get right in line to get a nickel, too, and graciously, no one ever said anything. Sometime in the late 1950s or early 1960s, the cemetery was moved, and houses then built on that spot. I just wondered if anyone remembered this cemetery besides my mother."
Tunnels: And speaking of Bakersfield's Chinese population, does anyone remember the tunnels that supposedly existed somewhere in the downtown area?
Richard Beene is president and CEO of The Bakersfield Californian. He blogs at www.bakersfieldobserved.com. These are his opinions, not necessarily those of The Californian. Email him at email@example.com.