False start

Last week this column announced the unveiling of the new and improved News & Review. But we discovered a glitch in production early Thursday as the papers were being delivered. Because of an error at the print shop, four pages of the Reno News & Review replaced four pages of the Chico News & Review, which meant we lost half the cover story, Streetalk and a number of advertisements. We did gain some Reno news and some Reno ads. Not satisfied with the tradeoff, we were forced to spread out across town (fortunately the papers bound for other parts of Butte County had not yet been delivered) to try to contact the delivery drivers and pick up those issues already on the racks. In the meantime, the Paradise Post printing shop had to reprint the entire press run as it was intended. Major headaches for all involved. We got calls from people wanting to know where the heck the paper was. For those who didn’t call, there’s your explanation.

Another thing. A few weeks back this column (notice how I say “this column,” which sort of lets me off the hook) reported the Marysville Appeal-Democrat newspaper had been purchased by media mogul Dean Singleton, who already owns the dailies in Red Bluff, Chico and Oroville as well as the Paradise Post. I’ve come to learn that the sale fell through. The Marysville paper is owned by the Freedom Communications Community Newspaper Division, which also operates papers in Porterville, Victorville, Barstow and Yuma, Ariz.

The conversion is complete. There will be no more KNVN or KHSL evening television news programs. Beginning June 2, look for a one-hour simulcast of NCN on the two stations from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Matt Keller and Crista Evans will anchor, at least while Debbie Cobb is out on maternity leave.

This American flag flap has got to stop. Those who want to fly the flag forever from every light post in town are good Americans. Those who don’t wish to fly the flag to an excess are good Americans, too. We’re all good Americans. No jingoists or pinkos here. Let’s move on.

I feel like I’ve awakened from a long and mostly pleasant dream, one that lasted for eight years. The Cleveland Indians are, as of this writing, on a seven-game losing streak and boast a record of 7–19. (Thank God for the Tigers.) These are the Indians I remember as a kid: horrible and out of the pennant race by the end of April. In my dream, however, they were a powerful and feared team playing in a modern stadium, selling out every game. No kidding. The Cleveland Indians. While I was lost in this blissful sleep, the Tribe made the playoffs seven years in a row, winning their division in all but one of those seasons. It starts in 1994, when they are in a tight race with the White Sox. But that season is shortened by a labor dispute in August, with the Indians a half-game behind the Sox. My dream continues and they make it to the World Series the very next year, in a season shortened by 18 games. But they still rack up 100 wins! They lose to the Braves in six games. But they’re young and their best players are locked into long-term contracts. Dreams, however, can be twisted and cruel as well as weird. Witness: Two years later the Indians, in my feverish sleep, make it into the ninth inning of the seventh game of the World Series nursing a one-run lead. They lose, of course, in extra innings to—get this—the Florida Marlins!

With this record, the Indians should still playing in the wretched (but oddly beautiful) Municipal Stadium, as the smell of cheap cigars, stale beer and industrial rust wafts in the winds blowing off Lake Erie. And I’ll bet Omar Visquel, bless his Golden Glove heart, is feeling right now like he just woke up from the same damn dream.