LONGEVITY

Here is some good news: thanks to advances in science and healthcare, the number of folks living beyond the age of 100 continues to grow. According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, there are now 53,364 centenarians in the United States compared to just 37,306 in 1990. The winners in all this: businesses related to the care and housing of healthy seniors and healthcare providers.

DRUNK DRIVING

My heart goes out to the family of Raeleen and Raegan Sorensen, a mother and daughter from Taft who are the latest victims of a string of drunk driving incidents. The Sorensens were driving on Taft Highway when they were struck by a car driven by 34-year-old Vincent Moroyoqui, who now faces two counts of murder and two counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. And yes, you guessed it, this is not the first time Moroyoqui has driven while impaired. According to reports, he was arrested for DUI three different times in the past 15 years.

SPOTTED ON TWITTER

"Paid for something at Whole Foods with a card that didn't have a chip in it and a 7-year-old in a Ramones shirt hit me with a sock full of kale."

SPOTTED ON FACEBOOK

"My wife's signature move is asking me a question then turning on the faucet when I answer."

ZIMMER

A big crowd turned out this past Saturday to raise money for the campaign of Cynthia Zimmer, the longtime prosecutor running to succeed Lisa Green as district attorney. The event was held at the southwest offices of Bolthouse Properties, where company President Tony Leggio rolled out the red carpet to garner support for Zimmer. Among those attending were Mayor Karen Goh, former Kern County Sheriff Carl Sparks, state Sen. Jean Fuller and Mark Abernathy, her campaign consultant. The only other announced candidate in the race so far is Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman.

DUELING PIANOS

Who says there is nothing to do in Bakersfield? One of the best deals in town is being hosted by The Padre Hotel in the Prospect Lounge every Friday and Saturday night, featuring an energetic version of "dueling pianos" that has no equal in town. The best feature: there is no cover charge but management advises everyone to arrive early to secure seating.

GOOD FORM

Once again the employees out at Grimmway Farms are showing their commitment to the communities they serve. This past weekend, Grimmway volunteers joined the Lamont business community in distributing backpacks and school supplies to some 500 school-bound children. Its was all part of the Back to School Supply Drive led by the Greater Lamont Chamber of Commerce.

MEMORIES

Gary Fong wrote in with this query: "In grade school we used to get visits from a Sgt. Chitwood (or maybe it was Chickwood) of the Bakersfield Police Department. He would give short talks or demonstrations about safety or good PR with the police. I was just wondering if anyone remembers him." Anyone?

Email contributing columnist Richard Beene at rsbeene@yahoo.com. His work appears here on Wednesdays and Fridays; the views expressed are his own. Read more on his blog at BakersfieldObserved.com.

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