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Small Wonders: Random thoughts on reading

September 28, 2012|By Patrick Caneday

I'm trying to avoid controversial subjects right now.

After a few weeks tackling hot-button issues — religion, politics, slumber parties — and fielding the fiery feedback, I need a breather. But with 38 days left before election day, it's going to be difficult.

Good thing I'm too busy working two jobs so I can pay 30% of my income in taxes, save pennies for a rainy day, afford food, utilities and rent — because even with multiple incomes we can't afford a mortgage in Burbank — or I'd feel like one of those “victims” dependent on government handouts.

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It's 4 a.m. as I write this — taking care of my first job before leaving the house for my second. The world outside is still dreamy as I pierce the darkness with my desk lamp, open the window and feel the cool breeze roll in. The daily newspaper just landed on my driveway with a thud, and I am staring at the blinking cursor on my screen trying to coax a subject from the ether of my foggy brain that I hope you'll enjoy.

I read a recently published comment from a reader (yes, I do care what people are saying about me) that insinuated I don't write enough about local events and places. A fair assessment, I have to admit.

For reasons stated above, it's hard to get out and meet interesting people, chase stories, rake the muck and still have time to make sure my kids know the difference between iPod and iParent.

So, for inspiration, I turn to another window on our community to keep abreast: the Glendale News-Press and Burbank Leader websites. Glendale is my hometown; Burbank my adopted home. Like family, they're often infuriatingly frustrating, yet both cities mean more to me than words can describe.

Glendale, dynamic and envious, has a college, a grand shopping district, simmering racial tensions and is in a state of constant makeover attempting to keep up with L.A. and Hollywood. Burbank, contented and complacent, has an airport, movie studios, a troubled police department, Friday night carhops at Bob's Big Boy and fights hard to be a big town rather than a small city.

A recent headline stated, “The latest statistics released by the U.S. Census Bureau this week show Glendale has taken a major economic hit since the recession began in 2007.” I blame all those lazy employees who got themselves laid off when good, hard-working, deregulated bankers consolidated and gambled away their mortgages…

Sorry, trying to stay lighthearted.

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