From the emails and voice mails:
PICK A TEMPERATURE – Monday morning, KCRA Channel 3 predicted Modesto would reach a high of 106 degrees by 5 p.m.
Over on KTXL Fox40, the call was for 105, which matched The Bee’s weather page prognostication. KOVR Channel 13’s website predicted 104, and KXTV Channel 10 forecast 103. Anything 102 or higher surpassed the record of 101 for June 9, set in 1979.
The winner? It depended upon your location in Modesto. The Modesto Irrigation District’s thermometer read 104 downtown. So Channel 13 was right, right?
Not so fast. The National Weather Service thermometer at Modesto Airport maxed out at 106, meaning Channel 3 nailed it.
The differences in the temperatures and the predictions confirms my longstanding belief that you merely need to surf the various local weather information sources and pick the forecast you like best.
FILLING IN THE GAPS – Last week, I received an email from Steve Martarano, public affairs specialist for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. But it had nothing to do with fish and wildlife.
Martarano recently donated four Ripon High yearbooks – The Mission – to the San Joaquin County Public Library’s Ripon branch.
“The yearbooks are from the war years, 1941-1944, and apparently they didn’t have those years. My mom, Carmella Nigro, and her sister Lucy (two of seven kids) were going there at the time (Lucy was Class of ’43; my mom, ’44). My mom passed away in 2005 and Lucy is still alive, living in the Fort Worth (Texas) area.”
Ripon librarian Melinda Kopp is happy to have them, because only in recent years did library staff begin searching for them.
“It would be nice to have two or three places in town where people can find them,” she said. “We have large gaps (in the years of the volumes cataloged).”
You might expect that in a small town, where generations of families have remained, the schools, the museum and the library would have complete sets of the yearbooks. Not so.
Ripon High librarian Roxanna Buck said the public school has yearbooks dating back to the early 1900s. “But there’s a really big gap from the 1960s and 1970s,” she said.
Lori McGovern, assistant to the superintendent of Ripon Christian Schools, said the private high school’s library also is missing several volumes.
And Don Schaapman of the Ripon Historical Society said that organization doesn’t have a complete set from the high schools, either.
So it might behoove the library, the schools and the historical society to pool their inventory information so if someone wants a specific yearbook, they’ll know which one is most likely to possess it.
WATER-SAVING TIPS – With the drought in its third year, and water being at a premium, conserving is a must. So is not wasting it. PrimeShine, a local car wash company, is posting water tips on its Facebook page. Drawing from a list posted on http://wateruseitwisely.com, the company passes along suggestions such as (No. 54) “Grab a wrench and fix that leaky faucet. It’s simple, inexpensive, and you can save 140 gallons a week”; and (No. 4) “If your dishwasher is new, cut back on rinsing. Newer models clean more thoroughly than older ones.”
Of course, if the drought continues, No. 64 will become prophetic: “Choose the right Arizona-friendly plants and watch them thrive in our desert environment.”
FUN AFLOAT – I wrote May 29 about Harry Boucher, a double-amputee (feet) who is raising money for the Society for Disabilities to provide playground gear for disabled children such as his son Max. Harry swam in the Lake Del Valle event in Livermore on June 1. He towed a kayak in which Max, who has cerebral palsy, rode.
“Actually, I did better than I expected, completed the 2.5k in 52 minutes and Max had a blast!” Harry wrote in an email.
He established an online fundraiser through http://firstgiving.com/fundraiser/harryboucher/harryboucher with a goal of raising $1,000. He did much better, generating $2,066 to date.
“JEOPARDY!” – Former Modesto-area resident Manuel Bermudez came close in an episode of “Jeopardy!” aired May 30. He finished second. Bermudez was featured in Glenn Scott columns in The Bee in 1986 and 1993, after Bermudez graduated with honors from Ceres High and was about to accept a scholarship to attend Stanford University. He later attended the University of Southern California’s film school and directed a short film featuring Will Ferrell for an alumni function.
Bermudez, now a legal assistant in Los Angeles, listed Modesto as his former hometown. He provided the correct question in Final Jeopardy, but so did returning champion Julia Collins, who won to extend her streak of consecutive wins to 20, second only to all-time champion Ken Jennings (74). She finished with $18,900. Bermudez was second with $14,400 and received $2,000 for finishing second. Maybe Bermudez softened her up for the next show. Collins’ winning streak ended June 2.
AUTHOR! AUTHOR! – Glenda Hyde’s “24 Years And 40 Days – The Story of Army 1LT Daniel Hyde” is available on Amazon.com in hardcover, softcover and Kindle ebook. It’s the life story of her son, Army Lt. Daniel Hyde, who was killed in Iraq in March 2009. “I got inspired by a teacher of Daniel’s at Thomas Downey who said she heard Daniel telling her to encourage me to write a book, to help comfort people who are coping with the death of a loved one,” Glenda Hyde said.
Turlock author Scott D. Roberts is a finalist in the 2014 National Indie Excellence Awards for his first novel, a thriller titled “ Vengeance is Now.” The 2014 National Indie Excellence Award is one of the most prestigious book awards in the nation. Roberts’ book received accolades from two groups for best new fiction in 2013. The book is available on Amazon, the website www.vengeanceisnow.com, 3L Publishing’s website www.3LPublishing.com and select bookstores. It is also available for Kindle, Nook and iBook.
Turlock figures differently in a new book by Alfredo Mirandé, professor of sociology and ethnic studies at the University of California, Riverside. His “JALOS, USA: Transnational Community and Identity” connects how people migrated from a town in the state of Jalisco in Mexico to Turlock and retained the the identity of their home region. According to a news release, it studies how “family, gender, courtship, religion and culture promote a Mexicanized version of the ‘American Dream’ for la gente de Jalo.” “JALOS, USA” is available in paperback and as an Adobe PDF ebook from the University of Notre Dame Press.
John Mangelos will be signing copies of his book “Ripon” on Saturday at the Manteca Costco store from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. It is part of the Images of America photobook series and is available at local bookstores and retailers, online or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com.
And, finally, Martha Ramirez of Modesto penned “Broken Heart,” a self-published picture book (illustrations by Mary Jo Prado) for children about open-heart surgery, whether it be their own or that of someone to whom they are close. It is available on Amazon.com.