Editorial: There’s Still Plenty Of Meat Left On Those Bones, Son

by Mark C.

For me, Father’s Day isn’t about gifts or cards. It’s about spending time with my kids. And as much as I appreciate you wanting to treat me for the day, it was way too nice out to not break out the grill. So why not? You can get the dishes! But, as we wrap up this little barbecue, there is something I need to address, and it’s in that pile of wing bones you’ve decided are “done.” What I’m saying is, there’s still a good amount of meat there, Bucko, and you’re not going anywhere until you pick those bones clean.

Wings aren’t cheap. Just because I got those on sale doesn’t mean you can eat the bulk and let the residuals go to waste. If they were off-brand Kroger wings, I wouldn’t say anything. But these are Tyson. Yeah. Starting to rethink tossing perfectly good chicken scraps yet? I certainly hope so.

Really, I shouldn’t even have to tell you to clean them off. Look at my plate. I got every nook and cranny. And they were perfectly cooked-through (if I do say so myself). Got that Bone-Suckin’ Sauce that we all like. So what’s the problem?

Your mother didn’t let you eat before this, did she?

Alright, I’ll make you a deal. Polish off those drumsticks and I’ll let you slide for tossing that unfinished ear of corn. You thought I wouldn’t notice you throwing out a perfectly juicy cob and grabbing another? That was good corn. Fresh from the flea market. Didn’t even need butter. And sure, you got most of it. All I’m saying is, kill what you got before you go for seconds. But if you finish — actually finish — the rest of your wings, we’ll forget all about it.

Love ya, Champ. I had a blast today. It was truly a Father’s Day to remember.

But I know you can get more out of those wings. We’re not throwing them away until they’re completely bare.

Fraternity Brothers Stumble Upon Budding Music Festival

Los Angeles, CA — With Summer in full swing, friends like Brett Swan, Kade Price and Matt King are always on the lookout for the next adventure. So when they discovered a music festival campsite downtown, they couldn’t wait to join the party. “We must be really early!” says Brett, noting the lack of stages.

Brett, Kade and Matt are on vacation with their fraternity here, all the way from Maryland. No strangers to a good party, they consider themselves veterans of the music festival scene. “We’ve hit Bonnaroo, Coachella, Lost Lands, FYF, Okeechobee…” says Brett, who continues to list festivals they’ve attended for the next two minutes.

While they hold their spot on the sidewalk, several of their fraternity brothers from UMD are out shopping for tents, alcohol, cannabis, food, water, Hawaiian shirts, and condoms. “… Electric Daisy, Electric Forest, Electric Daisyforest, Honda Days — You name it, we’ve raved it,” Brett finishes. But they had no idea there was a fest in LA this weekend, so they’ve spent the last few hours scrambling to find tickets. Kade’s eyes are locked on his iPhone as he scours the internet for 4-day passes.

Unfortunately, the other festival-goers haven’t been much help. “I tried asking our homie with the shopping cart over there, like, ‘Hey bro, where’d you get your pass?’ but I couldn’t understand a word he said. Dude is already trashed,” Matt says of their bearded neighbor. “Damn, we should ask if he has any Molly.”

As the day wears on, talk of dream artist lineups and “bitches” gives way to doubt. “What if we missed it?” A good question. The trash littered about, the dirtiness of the other campers, the vague smell of urine that kicks up with every breeze — all marks of a wrapped-up fest. But the brothers remain optimistic. In fact, they don’t seem worried at all.

And that’s when it becomes clear: it’s not about the music, or the bitches. It’s something more.

“If we stick around and there is a bomb-ass festival, we’ll be front row,” Brett says. And if they missed it? No problem. “We’ll have our own little party, right here.” He casually pulls out a pill bottle and starts to pass it around.

“At the end of the day, all you really need is Xannies.”

At press time, Brett was nursing a minor stab wound, yelling about how “that definitely wasn’t Skrillex.”

Brush Fire Miracle: Area Smoker Relieved He Left Benedict Canyon When He Did

Los Angeles, CA — Frank Hernandez doesn’t usually consider himself a lucky man. But when news broke of a brush fire spreading in the hills of Benedict Canyon, he couldn’t help but feel grateful he left the area when he did. “Crazy, I was just up there,” says the habitual smoker. “Sounds like I got out of there in the nick of time.”

Hernandez says he had coincidentally just taken a stroll through the Benedict Canyon neighborhoods earlier this afternoon. “Lots of pretty views up there. And the houses – sheesh,” he says of the area where firefighters are now racing to contain the massive blaze. “And to think, if I had stayed to finish that cigarette, I might’ve been caught in that.”

The LAFD says the cause is unknown.

As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, 75 homes had been evacuated since the first report at 2 p.m. near Portola Drive, and the blaze’s coverage was approaching 40 acres. “2 p.m.? Portola Drive?…”

“Wow. I literally just missed it,” Hernandez reports, flicking a smoldering cigarette butt into his flower bed.

Local Hero Saves Energy By Letting Someone Else Help That Guy

Manhattan, NY — David Haney is just your average American. He goes to work, comes home, cooks, cleans, and looks after his elderly mother. He’s a busy man — which is why he didn’t feel any compulsion to help that guy who was being mugged outside his apartment window Monday afternoon. “There’s other people around,” he said as he watched the assault.

The 31-year-old, who was just exhausted after chasing big clients at work all day, said he wasn’t indifferent to the victim’s plight; he was just confident that “it would get taken care of.” Sources say Haney surveyed his room for a whole twenty seconds before giving up on finding his phone. “I’m not the only guy in the world who knows how to dial 9-1-1.”

Direct intervention was also out of the question, which left Haney with no other option than to wait for someone more available to fend off the attacker. “What was I gonna do, yell out the window?” he reports, the image of a man being beaten within an inch of his life still fresh in his memory.

“I guess I just have faith in humanity.”

He was right to. Just as he was beginning to worry, another good samaritan came to Haney’s rescue, saving him from having to feel guilty. “See? He wasn’t in any real danger,” Haney said of the victim, who only sustained a broken nose, two black eyes, and a fractured rib. “Glad I didn’t get involved.”

A true hero.

At press time, David was avoiding going near the windows after making eye contact with the victim.

Stay-At-Home Dad Finds Fulfillment In Public Service

Washington D.C. — “You have to keep yourself occupied,” says husband and stay-at-home dad Don T.

Don is part of a historically small, but growing demographic of American men who choose not to take part in the 9-to-5 work hustle. A father of five, he’s spent much of his time making meals and packing lunches, shopping and cleaning, and driving the kids to and from work, practice and friends’ houses. After they left the nest, he found himself with a lot more time on his hands.

“All the ‘me’ time was nice at first, I’ll admit,” says Don from his desk. “But after a while you start to miss the sense of duty that you had when you still had kids running around.” Don says the decision to enter public service was a no-brainer. “I’ve always felt I had good ideas to combat some of the issues that face my neighborhood,” he says. “So many people have told me I have the best ideas.”

He decided to fulfill his lifelong dream of running for office. “I just went for it!” It’s paid off.

After garnering support from his community, he was given the title of ‘President.’ He’s now tasked with committee oversight, preparing budgets and meeting with ambassadors, to name a few of his new responsibilities.

The transition from caregiver into a leadership role was difficult, but rewarding nonetheless. “There were late nights, early mornings, a helluva learning curve, certainly. And I still have those days where the phone never stops ringing. But the sense of accomplishment I feel from passing a new resolution or erasing the legacy of my predecessor makes it all worth it.”

Even the family has gotten involved. “Boy, have they been a help. I figured they would be supportive, but I never imagined they would be so enthusiastic,” he says. “Junior especially has really gotten into it.”

What started as a hobby has turned into a full-blown passion for Don T. “I’ve had a lot of interests, I’ve done a lot of dabbling. Who would’ve thought I’d find my calling at 71 years old?” he says, signing another bill peeling back regulations.

“After all the years of child-rearing, I finally feel like it’s my turn.”

Facing Hardship, Family Makes Ends Meet By Rationing Monthly Free LA Times Articles

Los Angeles, CA — “You’ve reached your monthly free article limit.” That’s the message Jenny Wagner says she faced when she tried to read about the Alabama Senate race last December. Like so many others, she had no idea how scarce news had become. “I would complain that no one told us, but that’s sort of the problem, isn’t it?”

Jenny, a single mother of two living in North Hollywood, says her family has been hit hard by the news shortage. Many readers of the Los Angeles Times know the same struggle. Articles are rationed to just five per month per family, with each allowance coming at the beginning of each month. Now that it’s June, families may be tempted to splurge, but Jenny knows that would be unwise. “Five does feel like a lot these days. But we have to remember, this has to last us all the way until July,” Jenny explains. “This is when we have to be most careful.”

“I took the news for granted.”jake-lorefice-460658-unsplash

For the Wagners, the month of June will be like the past six months before it: they will use their five views on two local news articles, one on home and garden, one on global news, and one on politics. It’s not nearly enough for a family of three — but they’ll have to make do. Through all of this, Jenny credits her fourteen-year-old daughter, Leah, for keeping her strong. “I’m so proud of how she’s handling this. She’s really stepped up.”

Hard times have been especially hard on her youngest, Aiden. At five years old, he’s too young to understand why the news is gone. “How do you explain to a five-year-old why he’s not allowed to read the opinion section today?” Jenny asks, holding back tears. “It just breaks my heart.” Jenny will often scrape by on just headlines so Aiden and Leah have enough.

But despite their trials, the Wagners are staying positive. “If anything, we appreciate what little news we get that much more,” Jenny says. It’s this attitude that has helped the family deal with the challenge life has thrown at them. “I know we’ll get through this, even if that means we have to stay behind on current events.

“By the way, did you hear about this Facebook thing? Disgusting.”

When reached for comment, a representative from the LA Times said, “Jesus Christ, literally just pay ninety-nine cents and you can read all the news. Is that really so much to ask?”