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The Farsider

April 11, 2013


Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher <bilmat@comcast.net>
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster <leroypyle@sjpba.net>


The Farsider is an independent publication that is not affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or its membership.



Next Wednesday, April 17th
POA Hall, 1151 N. 4th St.
Bar will open at 5:00 with dinner following around 6:00



This story from the front page of yesterday's Local Section should capture your attention if you haven't already read it. So who wins? Retirees or the City? The Mercury News reports, you decide...

City Must Cash Out Unused Time but Claims a Long-Term Financial Victory

By John Woolfolk
Mercury News — April 10, 2013

SAN JOSE — San Jose owes a former employee more than $28,000 for unused sick leave under a judge’s ruling that puts the city on the hook to pay millions of dollars to other retiring workers from the generous perk it has tried to claw back.

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Mary Arand’s tentative ruling, dated Thursday, could influence other cases in California where it has been unclear whether “vested rights” protections for government employee pensions apply to other retirement perks. Her decision says San Jose must pay Lorie Deisenroth the $28,080 worth of unused sick leave that the former account technician said the city wrongly withheld on grounds that it eliminated the perk three months before her retirement a year ago.

Yolanda Cruz, president of the union that had represented Deisenroth, called it a victory for city employees who feel their retirement benefits are under siege from city leaders who say the perks’ soaring costs are devouring the city budget. The city imposed elimination of the sick-leave cashouts over union objections.

“It’s just unfortunate that we had to take this path, and it was a costly path,” Cruz said, adding that her union is willing to negotiate changing the benefit in the future. “We all knew this was a vested right, and this ruling just confirms that.”

But San Jose officials also claimed a victory, noting that the decision says the city can stop letting employees continue banking more sick leave credits to build up bigger retirement windfalls in the future. That is the position San Jose has offered in recent union talks, said city officials who added that the current budget assumes continued sick-leave payouts and won’t be affected by the ruling.

“I think there’s good news in the decision for us because it will allow us to move in a direction we’ve been trying to move in eliminating sick-leave payouts,” Mayor Chuck Reed said. “We’re trying to change things on a going-forward basis — people keep what they’ve got and we apply changes in the future.”

Though Deisenroth’s case was not a class action and the decision is still considered tentative, neither side indicated plans to challenge it, making it likely the ruling will stand and apply to other city workers eligible for the sick-leave retirement perk.

“Anyone who is in a similar position to Ms. Deisenroth and has a vested right to payment of unused accrued sick leave would be gratified by the decision,” said her attorney, Teague Paterson. Deisenroth had been counting on the sick-leave payout to help fund her children’s education.

Arand noted it is the first time a California court has considered the question, which attorneys said could potentially guide decisions elsewhere in the state. In reaching her decision she cited cases in other states including Wisconsin and Missouri. “The decision doesn’t necessarily reflect a change of law but confirms that California law is applied in the same way it is everywhere else,” Paterson said. City Attorney Rick Doyle said the decision that the city can cap the benefit going forward “may have implications statewide.” As a city employee he did not handle the case, which contract lawyers argued on the city’s behalf. Sick leave cash-outs are virtually unheard of in private employment, where time off for illness is treated as a use-it-or-lose it benefit. But it’s not unusual in government, and San Jose officials say the city’s perk is among the most generous.

Employees who have worked at least 15 years may bank up to 30 weeks — 1,200 hours — of unused sick leave to cash out at retirement at their final pay rate, even though they earned most of those hours years earlier while paid a lower salary. Police officers and firefighters must work longer to qualify — 20 years — but have no limit on the amount of sick leave they can cash out at retirement, resulting in even greater payouts and accounting for most of the annual bill for the perk that has topped $10 million in recent years.

News of the payouts has rankled taxpayers in recent years. The city has cut its police force and trimmed library hours to cover growing retirement costs. Yet amid the cutbacks, the sick-leave perk has let many longtime employees walk away with a retirement bonus big enough to buy a new car, and in the case of top administrators, police and fire chiefs, six-figure windfalls large enough for a yacht.

City unions have argued that the same “vested rights” under California law that bar government employers from diminishing their pensions for the duration of their careers apply to other retirement perks like sick-leave cashouts. City officials claimed authority to change or discontinue such benefits, but acknowledged it was tough to convince the judge that an employee could lose the value of a perk built up over a career.

“This is a real difficult case here,” Doyle said. “You had a career, 30-year employee who’d earned her sick leave. The court had to take that into consideration. At the end of the day it’s probably a decision the city can live with.”

Reed agreed, noting that the city last month offered police officers a deal that would freeze sick-leave that can be cashed out and the rate at which it will be paid by June 23. That would let officers maintain but not increase the current value of their accumulated sick leave.

“The public certainly does get worked up about these large payouts,” Reed said. “We’ve committed that we’re going to fix the problem. Now we’ve got a court decision that allows us to do that. That should help us achieve a negotiated solution.”



Last Week's Poll Results

For the most recent Rasmussen Reports releases, click here:



April 9th

Hi Bill and Leroy, thought I'd pass on another tidbit. I call it the day Officer Fred Esparza probably, and unknowingly, saved my life.

Back in the early '70s as I recall, Fred was walking a money beat downtown and was at Market and Santa Clara when a car pulled to the curb and asked him for directions. While Fred was bent over talking to the occupants a man came up from behind and jerked his .357 out of his holster. All of a sudden Fred was staring at his own .357 right there at the intersection. A crowd gathered and cars had stopped to gawk. Then-officer Jim Cornelius who was working an off-duty shoplifting job at the department store at the corner came out but was unable to get a clear shot at the suspect due to the crowd. Before anything could be done, the bad guy turned the gun on himself, but he survived his suicide attempt. (Some guys just can't do anything right.)
In those days it was common practice to wear a holster where the butt of the gun stuck out away from the hip. Upon talking to Fred after the incident and how his .357 was easily ripped from his holster, I immediately went shopping and bought myself a Burns & Martin break-front holster that prevented the gun from being removed by pulling it straight up.
Not long after the purchase I was working a weekend money paddy wagon job when I got a call of a disturbance behind some houses on S. 5th St., just north of San Jose State. I pulled up to the address, aimed the spotlight between two houses and saw some activity. I got out of the wagon and was waiting for a fill unit when a man came out from between the houses carrying something I couldn't I.D. in his left hand. When I approached him from the right, he began to switch the object from his left hand to his right, and I ordered him to stop. At this point he began to swing at me with the object still in his left hand. It turned out to be a 16-ounce can of beer. I was able to grab his right hand and pivot it backwards, pull him into a spin and take him to the ground just as then-officer Lyle Rice came running up, said "Nice move" and helped me subdue the jerk. We loaded him into the paddy wagon and I took off for the Main Jail.

When we arrived at the Drunk Tank and I opened the rear doors of the paddy wagon, the bad guy threw his jacket in my face, leapt past me and began running toward San Pedro with me in pursuit. I'm here to tell you that running with motorcycle boots and breeches is no fun. He turned left on San Pedro towards Hedding, then right on Hedding with me huffing and puffing behind. On Hedding St. I managed to commandeer a car occupied by a man and a woman and caught up with the subject behind the bank at the S/E corner of 1st and Hedding. Turned out that my suspect was a lanky, 6-foot-tall Native American.

As the suspect began to climb over a 4-foot-tall fence I was able to get one cuff on him. It was at that moment that all hell broke loose. We crashed into the fence with me going over backwards and landing on a 2x4 as the fence collapsed. As we wrestled around for what was a few moments but felt like hours, I could feel him try to jerk my gun out of its holster twice while yelling, "I'll kill you you white m---f---er!"

I finally managed to subdue the subject and had the man whose car I commandeered send his wife to the PD at 1st and Mission and get me some help.

It seemed to take forever before then-officer Ken Kocina arrived and took control of the suspect and I went to the hospital for some treatment to my back and some shots. I later learned that the subject had recently been released on parole from a Federal prison where he had been serving time for manslaughter on an Indian reservation.

Bottom line: Had I not decided to purchase the Burns & Martin holster after Fred Esparza's experience, well...

To quote Mr. Gump, "That's all I've got to say about that."

Dick Tush

• • • • •


April 9th

Hi Bill,
Unlike the situation in San Jose, Santa Cruz's mayor and city council have shown strong support for our police officers and the department as a whole. The Santa Cruz city council is voting on a measure to provide a $20,000 bonus for lateral transfers and up to and additional $5,000 bonus for those officers who obtain a college degree.
Additionally, they will be voting to allow Chief Vogel to hire additional officers now, over an above his current authorized staffing level, in order to fill anticipated vacancies created by officers who will be retiring later this year.  
Jim Carraher

This is the link to the news article that Jim included in his message. He is a former San Jose cop and brother to former SJPD officer-turned SJ firefighter Don Carraher.


Jim added an update on Wednesday that read, "Yesterday the Santa Cruz City Council unanimously approved the hiring bonus proposal and are allowing Chief Vogel to immediately hire five more officers than has been budgeted for as a way to quickly fill expected vacancies later this year."

• • • • •


April 10th

A little encouragement and a big thanks for all that you guys do for us very old retired cops. Every Thursday evening I sit down to the Farsider and scroll through the articles and websites. After 25 years away from the job, the Farsider is the last link to times gone by. The professional way that Leroy presents the website makes me a true believer that he is in fact a webmaster. And the way that Bill takes the rambling text of my articles and makes them a statement of interest is unbelievable. Looking forward to next Thursday and my time with the Farsider.

Again, thanks.

Bill Yarbrough

Those comments deserve a sincere thank you, Orville. We seldom receive feedback for what we do, and we appreciate the kind words.



—Read the last two paragraphs to see why those in California should support the legislation—

Democrat, Republican Craft Measure to Close Background Check Loophole

By Jennifer Steinhauer — New York Times
Mercury News — April 11, 2013

WASHINGTON — Sen. Joe Manchin so craved a pro-gun-rights Republican as a partner for a bill to expand background checks on gun buyers that he took to buttonholing senators on the in-house subway that ferries them from their offices to the Capitol, making his pitch while his colleagues were trapped with him in the tiny car. Repeatedly rebuffed, Manchin, a conservative West Virginia Democrat, decided to call on his friend Sen. Patrick Toomey, the Pennsylvania Republican known almost exclusively for his conservative fiscal positions. On a recent Amtrak trip from New York to Washington where they happened to intersect, Toomey agreed to listen.

On Wednesday the two gun owners, long favorites of the National Rifle Association, came together in a last-ditch effort on a background check compromise that opened the door to a rare congressional consideration of gun law changes, beginning Thursday.

While their agreement ensures only that the measure will reach the Senate floor for debate, it rescued gun law changes sought by President Barack Obama and gun control groups from an early defeat.

Lawmakers who represent neighboring states, allies on energy issues and temperamentally aligned, Manchin and Toomey announced that they had gingerly put together a bipartisan deal that would expand background checks to cover unlicensed dealers at gun shows as well as all online sales.

It would also maintain record-keeping provisions that law enforcement officials find essential in tracking guns used in crimes, but that some Republicans had balked at. Unlike the initial Democratic plan, it does not cover sales between family members and neighbors.

For Toomey, a Republican toiling in a swing state chock-full of suburban women who often favor gun safety legislation, a relatively modest measure to expand background checks seemed both politically viable and in need of a Republican imprimatur.

Gun legislation was “not something I sought,” he said.

“I’ve got to tell you, candidly, I don’t consider criminal background checks gun control,” said Toomey, who led the conservative advocacy group Club for Growth after a stint in the House.

He acknowledged that it was hard to take heat from fellow conservatives over his reach across the aisle.

“There have been people who’ve called the office expressing disappointment,” he said in an interview. But some have expressed support, too, he said.

For Manchin, whose signature campaign ad in 2010 featured him shooting environmental legislation with a hunting rifle, Toomey represented his best hope of a credible Republican ally who may be able to bring along fellow conservatives to the bill.

“I wanted to make sure whoever I was with came from a gun culture such as mine,” Manchin, who opposes most gun control legislation but wants to close background check loopholes, said in an interview. “I just appreciate Pat so much for being able to get there.”

Manchin, who wept during a meeting with family members of victims of the shooting in Newtown, Conn., has been lauded by gun control advocates for his help.

The gun bill will receive its first procedural vote in the Senate on Thursday. The House leadership sounded cool on the measure but for now the fight is in the Senate.

The bill also enhances some gun rights. For instance, the senators’ amendment would require states to recognize other states’ concealed carry permits and would allow for interstate travel laws for sportsmen who do not have a license in the state they are visiting.

But if enacted, the federal measure would have no effect in California, which already has the nation’s strictest gun background checks, including on person-to-person weapons sales. California also imposes a 10-day waiting period to buy a gun.



By Robillard, SJPD Ret.

"The Great Pretenders"

In the olden days, or days of old — whichever you prefer — another event occurred that became part of the folklore of the SJPD.

A couple of San Jose coppers were scouting the Gold Country up in Georgetown in Northern California for a small place the two could call a "mountain cabin." The particular day in question happened to fall on Good Friday, which began with the two indulging in a few libations at a popular watering hole in downtown Georgetown. During their banter with the bartender they expressed an interest in purchasing the saloon, and initial negotiations began over some straight shots followed with beer chasers, otherwise known as boilermakers.

During the conversation the barkeep was led to believe the two potential purchasers were Ray and Dave as they identified themselves as the police chief in San Jose and the foreman of the Big E Ranch, also in San Jose. However, Ray, a/k/a "Shaky" and Dave, a/k/a "Porkchop," were actually SJPD patrolmen.

As the banter about the possible sale of the bar went on, the owner stipulated that if he did sell the place, "Porkchop" would have to guarantee him a job at the Big E Ranch. Since "Porkchop" owned the ranch, promising the bartender a job was a snap.

When the bartender-owner advised "Shaky" and "Porkchop" that the bar would be closed from 12 noon to 3:00 p.m. due to Good Friday, the two "potential purchasers" said they would like to remain inside the bar and discuss the possible purchase while enjoying a little of "Georgetown's hospitality." And so it went.

By the end of the day the sale of the bar was still undecided, and the bar owner was left hanging.

Fast-forward two weeks later. With bag and baggage in hand, the owner of the bar and his cohort showed up at SJPD headquarters. When they stumbled into the Chief's Office and met the real chief — Ray Blackmore — the bar owner immediately realized he had been duped. But when the story was told, even a mental midget within the hallowed walls of the SJPD could easily figure out the identities of "Shaky" and "Porkchop," both of whom had to share the costs for the luckless bartender and his partner to return to Georgetown.

And the beat goes on...



He is engraved in stone in the National War Memorial in Washington, DC, back in a small alcove where very few people have seen it. For the WWII generation, this will bring back memories. For you younger folks, it's a bit of trivia that is a part of our American history.

Anyone born in 1913 to about 1950 is familiar with Kilroy. No one knew why he was so well known,but everybody got into it, I even remember seeing him around public places in the late 60s...

So who the heck was Kilroy?

In 1946 the American Transit Association, through its radio program, "Speak to America," sponsored a nationwide contest to find the real Kilroy, offering a prize of a real trolley car to the person who could prove himself to be the genuine article. Almost 40 men stepped forward to make that claim, but only James Kilroy from Halifax, Massachusetts, had evidence of his identity.

'Kilroy' was a 46-year old shipyard worker during the war who worked as a checker at the Fore River Shipyard in Quincy. His job was to go around and check on the number of rivets completed. Riveters were on piecework and got paid by the rivet. He would count a block of rivets and put a check mark in semi-waxed lumber chalk, so the rivets wouldn't be counted twice. When Kilroy went off duty, the riveters would erase the mark.

Later on, an off-shift inspector would come through and count the rivets a second time, resulting in double pay for the riveters.

One day Kilroy's boss called him into his office. The foreman was upset about all the wages being paid to riveters and asked him to investigate. It was then he realized what had been going on. The tight spaces he had to crawl in to check the rivets didn't lend themselves to lugging around a paint can and brush, so Kilroy decided to stick with the waxy chalk. He continued to put his check mark on each job he inspected, but added 'KILROY WAS HERE' in king-sized letters next to the check, and eventually added the sketch of the chap with the long nose peering over the fence, which became part of the Kilroy message.

Once he did that, the riveters stopped trying to wipe away his marks. Ordinarily the rivets and chalk marks would have been covered up with paint. With the war on, however, ships were leaving the Quincy Yard so fast that there wasn't time to paint them. As a result, Kilroy's inspection "trademark" was seen by thousands of servicemen who boarded the troop ships the yard produced.

His message apparently rang a bell with the servicemen because they picked it up and spread it all over Europe and the South Pacific.

Before war's end, "Kilroy" had been here, there and everywhere on the long hauls to Berlin and Tokyo. To the troops outbound in those ships, however, he was a complete mystery; all they knew for sure was that someone named Kilroy had "been there first." As a joke, U.S. servicemen began placing the graffiti wherever they landed, claiming it was already there when they arrived.

Kilroy became the U.S. super-GI who had always "already been" wherever GIs went. It became a challenge to place the logo in the most unlikely places imaginable (it is said to be atop Mt. Everest, the Statue of Liberty, the underside of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, and even scrawled in the dust on the moon.

As the war went on, the legend grew. Underwater demolition teams routinely snuck ashore on Japanese-held islands in the Pacific to map the terrain for coming invasions by U.S. troops (and thus, presumably, were the first GI's there). On one occasion, however, they reported seeing enemy troops painting over the Kilroy logo!

In 1945, an outhouse was built for the exclusive use of Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill at the Potsdam conference. Its' first occupant was Stalin, who emerged and asked his aide (in Russian), "Who is Kilroy?"

Kilroy was not the only one of his kind during World War II. The Canadians had their version (Clem) and the British had two (Chad and Mr. Foo). At the conclusion of the war, the American Transit Association decided to put a face on the mysterious Mr. Kilroy. The Association sponsored a contest through its radio program”Speak to America” to draw out the phantom. Nearly 40 men stepped forward claiming the persona, but the Association declared James J. Kilroy of Halifax, Massachusetts the real “Kilroy."

In order to prove that he was the authentic “Kilroy,” he brought forth co-workers from the shipyard, as well as some of the riveters, who vouched for his story. The Association awarded him a 22-ton streetcar which he eventually converted into sleeping quarters for some of his children.

James Kilroy and his family with the trolley car he
was awarded by the American Transit Association
He died in Halifax on Nov. 24, 1962.

And the tradition continues...

The wall surrounding bin Laden's compound in Pakistan

If you are interested, here is a video featuring Kilroy's family
that also tells the story behind "Kilroy Was Here."


And this is the link to the official "Kilroy Was Here" website...




The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox

New Articles

• Did the Cleveland Indians' Joe Gordon deliberately strike out to prevent rookie teammate Larry Doby from looking bad?

• Photograph purportedly shows an STD-related infection known as 'blue waffle disease.'

• Photograph purportedly shows the chief of Brazil's Kayapo tribe weeping over the approval of a hydroelectric dam project.

• Photograph purportedly shows an anti-rape device known as RapeX.

• Warning cautions women that rapists are using little children who appear to be lost to lure victims to them.

 • Did the Dalai Lama say, "If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun"?

• Warning proclaims that dihydrogen monoxide is a dangerous substance which should be banned.

• Did a man named Joshua Max Gallagher severely beat a 17-month-old girl?

• Photograph purportedly shows Barack Obama kissing David Cameron.

• Will YouTube be shutting down and no longer accepting video submissions?

• Discount chain threatens to bar a family from shopping at one of its stores due to the husband's pranking.

• Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news stories from around the world!

Worth a Second Look

• Did Little Mikey of LIFE cereal fame die from the explosive effects of mixing Pop Rocks candy with soda pop?

Still Haunting the Inbox

• Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world.

Fraud Afoot

• Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.



You know what to do...

• • • • •

Let's start with what we feel is the funniest clip so far this year. It's the official full-length, unedited version of the shortened video you may have recently seen on shows like Leno's or Letterman's. Was it staged to promote a product like Jeff Gordon's test drive that became a Pepsi commercial? It's possible. But the only brand apparent in the clip is the Lexus symbol on the steering wheel, and it's highly unlikely that the luxury car maker would want to send a message that there was a problem with one of its cars. Here's the setup: The kid in the backseat with the video camera or smart phone who you don't see tells his brother in the front seat when to zap their dad. (2 Mins.)


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This is the heart-warming video many of you have seen on the news this week of 7-year-old Jack Hoffman running 69 yards for a Nebraska touchdown. The little tyke who has been fighting brain cancer has been adopted by the Corn Huskers. (1 Min.)


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PoliceOne.com is a website that caters to law enforcement personnel. It recently conducted a survey that allowed officers across the U.S. to share their perspectives on issues ranging from gun control and gun violence to gun rights. The image below shows one of the questions in the survey along with the results. To see more questions and answers, click on the link below sent in by our Webmaster...


This article sent in by Leroy a few hours after the one above argues that gun registration can lead to gun confiscation, and claims it is happening now in New York State...


• • • • •

It will likely come as no surprise that Fox News and YouTube are about the only outlets where you can see this news story about several sheriffs in a number of states saying they will ignore any Federal gun laws they feel are unconstitutional. Then again, the vast majority of sheriffs are voted into office, whereas most police chiefs are appointed. The video was sent in by Bruce Morton. (9 Mins.)


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Have a look at this clip we received from Tom Macris and prepare to be amazed. We would love to provide you with intimate details about ARGUS, but we'd have the CIA all over our not-so-svelte butts if we did. (5 Mins.)


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It's simply unfair that some people have so much dough that they can purchase a former Walmart store and convert it into their own personal automotive man cave. Have a look at this clip we received from Les "The Vette Guy" Nunes, who said he "had to wipe the saliva off his keyboard a couple of times when he watched it." Perhaps it is time to follow the President's mantra and "share the wealth." (5 Mins.)


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Some of you may have seen this Italian TV ad for aspirin featuring an auction and a Ming vase (as in "vaz"). If you haven't, it should be worth a moment of your time. (44 Secs.)


• • • • •

If you missed this superb video from last Sept. about how NASA landed our first rover ("Spirit") on Mars, you have another opportunity thanks to a suggestion from Manny Becerra. Having seen it a couple of times, my only question is how did the scientists ensure that "Spirit" would be right-side-up after the huge bundle of balloons stopped bouncing on the Mars surface? After all the time and money that had been invested, it would have been a real bummer for the rover to wind up in the same position as a turtle on its back, eh? (6 Mins.)


• • • • •

This is an interesting video as it shows a full moon rising in real time, as you can see by the people moving in silhouette. Make sure your sound is turned on so you can hear the musical soundtrack. (4 Mins.)


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Someone finally made a video out of this old Italian joke about a guy on a scooter asking a farmer what time is it? (1 Min.)


• • • • •

If anyone can explain how this magic trick or illusion we received from Lumpy works, we would appreciate a definitive answer in less than 200 words. (4 Mins.)


This is a different presentation of the same trick or illusion. (4 Mins.)


We found this explanation using Google, but it wasn't very helpful for simpletons like us...



• • • • •

Imagine you purchase a used copier and find a hard drive inside that includes hundreds of pages of confidential police reports. Sure, you may be retired and no longer have the need to use an office copier, but if you have a friend or relative who is still in the workforce and does use one, you might want to send them this link and advise them to watch the video. (5 Mins.)


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If you are a fan of beautiful birds, you you should be intrigued by this video we received from Bruce Morton. It's about the "Birds-of-Paradise Project" and includes video of some of the most beautiful birds in the world. (5 Mins.)


• • • • •

When a reader sent me a link to a website that claimed it could find and display my high school photo, I was 99 percent sure it was one of those ha-ha sites in which a monster would suddenly appear on the screen and startle me. I was wrong, there was no monster, and I was amazed that the website was able to turn up my James Lick High School Class of '61 graduation photo. Give it a try and see if it works for you...


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Pic of the Week
Submitted by Lumpy


Scrolling Box

This is the message box, using the scroller component.



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