Top Stories Breeze

17 Jul 19
Murder in Common

With bonus Q&A below Not much is pretty about the Gingerbread Houses, an image that normally conjures beauty and charm. These Gingerbread Houses are vile places where degenerate behaviours are forced upon the young. PI Charlie ‘Bars’ Constantinople is hired to find a pedophile using the name Teddy Bear. A man who has left the […]

17 Jul 19
The Big Garden and Croft

Today was forecast to be the last day of day-long sunshine before another longish spell of rain and wind, so we shut the Hebridean Woolshed and set up camp (with the motorhome) at the Loch Druidibeag car park, for a day of walking and discovery.

17 Jul 19
BIG OTHER

  Gravitas, an oval shape. We partially shot our windows, our idiot boxes so we don’t see your faces. The crisis game is to wall off the brain. We make vows we cannot keep about refunding your truths, your votes, your demonstrations. Apparent suicide not as rare or in rows as (one) (you) would think. […]

17 Jul 19
Daily Breeze
KOST (103.5 FM) was down almost a full point from May, but remained the top dog in the Los Angeles ratings race according to Nielsen Ratings, which released the June report last week. The soft-rock station earned a 5.8 share of the audience aged 6 and over compared with the 6.6 it had in May and 6.5 in February and April. Right behind was all-oldies KRTH (101.1 FM) at 5.4 … about what it has averaged over the past six months but down from the 5.8 peak it saw in May, and KTWV The Wave (94.7 FM) at 5.0 … slightly above its 6-month average but down from May’s 5.2. KBIG (103.5 FM) was 4th at 4.6, while KFI (640 AM) singlehandedly proved that people can and do tune in to the AM band if the right programming is there and came in 5th with a 4.5 share. That KFI came in 5th is significant: in an era when few even tune to the band at all, being on the band and in the top-5 is huge. The next-highest-rated AM station was KNX at 14th (2.7 share); others were way down the list. KLOS (95.5 FM) is thriving under local Meruelo Media ownership … its 8th place 3.3 is the highest the station has seen in years, perhaps since I started writing this column in 1987, though I admit I didn’t look back to verify. The station had a 2.6 share in the last ratings period in which it was owned by Cumulus. It’s still a half point under primary competition Jack (KCBS, 93.1 FM), but finally within striking distance. Alternative is still struggling, with both KROQ (106.7 FM) and Alt 98.7 (KYSR) in the low 2s: 2.0 and 2.2, respectively. I still believe that playing and breaking new music would help both, but they will more likely just stay the course and find themselves irrelevant in the next few years. For its part, Alt still calls itself “LA’s New Alternative” years after adopting the format, perhaps an indicator of some of the problems facing the station. OK, I’m being harsh, but I do think both stations need to reset and stop relying so much on one sound and too many songs that are years old. They are both holding much-untapped potential! KSUR (1260 AM, 105.1 HD2) still manages to amaze by earning a 0.5 share. Sounds not-too-impressive until you realize that the main AM signal doesn’t even reach the entire city. On the other hand, KABC (790 AM), which does reach the entire city, was at 0.4. Adult-album formatted KCSN (88.5 FM) — which seems to reach everywhere except wherever I am — earned a 0.5. KIIS-FM continues to surprise … for the wrong reasons. The once-dominant station has settled in the high 3s and low 4s; in the latest, it was 7th place at 3.7. Not bad in and of itself, but you can bet if the station was not owned by a huge company that owns seven others in town — as was the rule before consolidation — heads would roll. No wonder radio ad revenues are down. The full story: Each rating is an estimate of the percentage of listeners aged 6 and over tuned to a station between the hours of 6 a.m. and 12 midnight, and are printed with the permission of Nielsen.1. KOST (5.8) 2. KRTH (5.4) 3. KTWV (5.0) 4. KBIG (4.6) 5. KFI (4.5) 6. Jack-FM (3.8) 7. KIIS-FM (3.7) 8. KLOS (3.3) 9. KLAX (3.2) 10. Power 106 (3.1)11. KLVE (3.0) 12. Real 92.3, KXOL (2.9) 14. KNX (2.7) 15. KRCD (2.6) 16. Amp Radio (2.4) 17. Go Country 105 (2.3) 18. KLYY, Alt 98.7 (2.2) 20. KROQ (2.0)21. KSCA, KUSC (1.9) 23. KPCC (1.8) 24. KBUE, KKLQ (1.7) 26. KJLH (1.6) 27. KLAC, KSPN (1.4) 29. KCRW (1.3) 30. KDAY, KXOS (1.2)32. KEIB, KKJZ (0.9) 34. KFSH The Fish (0.7) 35. KFWB, KRLA, KWIZ (9.6) 38. KCSN, KDLD, K-Surf (0.5)41. KABC, KKLA, KWKW (0.4) 44. KIRN, KTNQ (0.3) 46. KYLA (0.2) 47. KHJ, KPFK, KSPN Online Stream (0.1)
17 Jul 19
universalshortstories

The story of hellAug 28, 2016 Shiva and Haruto were walking together one day. They had just finished a meditation class. This was nestled in a location far off from any real metropolis. “How did your meditation go, Haruto?” Asked his friend Shiva. “It was alright. I kind of had my friend on my mind… […]

17 Jul 19
laviedepraerie

I could see it. We were loosely gathered on the outer edge of the copse of trees, standing on soft earth covered in early winter grass. A skinny little wind was lifting our hair, teasing at our collars. Our cheeks were cold. Sombre. We spoke randomly, each sharing a memory as it came. Sometimes voices […]

17 Jul 19
The Folk Apothic

The dog days of summer are upon us here in Appalachia and the heat is absolutely…. well… miserable. Days are spent indoors and it’s only reasonable to venture outdoors about 2 hours after sunset. Legs stick to lawn chairs, fish don’t bite, bugs are incessant, the lake is packed, and the air is heavy with […]

17 Jul 19
Faith. Family. Food. Frolic

July 17, 2019 Today we were awoken by the beautiful sun in Phuket – a great way to say goodbye to the Land of Smiles. You would think that I would learn after being in Thailand for about two weeks that when we look up how far something is on maps.me that I should automatically […]

17 Jul 19
The Colorado Sun
Compiled by Eric Lubbers, eric@coloradosun.comCTO/Newsletter Wrangler, @brofax Good morning! Today, most of Colorado will be feeling the dog days of summer (named by the Romans because they thought the “Dog Star” Sirius was so bright that it sent extra heat to the planet when it was visible in July and August.) But as you do whatever it is you need to do to prep for temperatures that feel more like Phoenix than Denver, we’ve got a whole bundle of fascinating stories worth your time. No joke, you need to sit down and actually read at least three of the stories linked below. No excuses. Let’s slam this Slurpee, shall we?   Want to support local journalism and show off your business or event at the same time? Consider underwriting a Colorado Sun newsletter. Email underwriting@coloradosun.com for rates and availability.   >> ABOVE THE FOLD  A slain deputy. A political brawl. A school shooting: How Sheriff Tony Spurlock is handling years of turmoil Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock talks about the shooting at STEM School in Highlands Ranch on Tuesday, May 7, 2019. (Jesse Paul, The Colorado Sun) “I don’t see you that much, except bad news on the TV.” — A restaurant worker to Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock There has been one man right in the middle of three of the biggest stories in Colorado: Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock.  >> DEATH, POLITICS AND OTHER TRAUMA Spurlock’s time at the helm of the 800-person department has been rough — including the death of Deputy Zack Parrish in late 2017, a political fight over the red flag law and the recent STEM school shooting. Jesse Paul spent a lot of time with Spurlock, a Colorado native, to find out how his once-sleepy county has dealt with what he calls the most trying of his 40-plus years in law enforcement. Take some time to read this one.   Gunnison’s farm season has grown by 28 days. The proof is in “Barometer” Bartleson’s weather records. In a chart based on Bruce Bartleson’s collected data, the growing season in Gunnison — defined as the number of days between the last frost and the first frost of the year — has been steadily getting longer since the 1960s. Despite his nickname, “Barometer,” Bruce Bartleson doesn’t actually use a barometer for his work. “I tell them I don’t forecast: I am a weather historian. I only backcast,” he told reporter Nancy Lofholm. >> FEWER FROST DAYS, LONGER GROWING SEASONS There are two reasons to read this great story by Nancy. First: The story of how Bruce, an 85-year-old retired geology professor, turned an interest in weather into a full-blown obsession that debunked some of the deepest-held myths about Gunnison weather (no, it’s not the coldest town in the country, and it’s not even the coldest in Colorado.)  Second: By mining more than a century’s worth of data, he’s showing the real-time effects of a changing climate right in his own backyard.   Who’s signing the petition to recall Gov. Jared Polis? People who feel left out. Dave Arnold works at Warrior’s Revolution in Longmont on July 13, 2019. The store, which sells ammunition and survival supplies, is one place where people can sign a petition to recall Colorado Gov. Jared Polis. (Sandra Fish, Special to The Colorado Sun) We’ve reported about how much of a long shot the attempt to recall Gov. Jared Polis is, requiring an unheard-of number of signatures (more than 10,000 per day) in a state where the governor won an election just last year by 8 points. Sandra Fish talked to some of the people who are pushing the effort along to find out why they are committed to the cause. >> OIL, GUNS AND SOME MISCONCEPTIONS From agricultural supply stores in Platteville to tactical gear stores in Longmont, Sandra reports on why these residents feel so strongly — while also correcting some misconceptions when the voter’s beliefs don’t match up with facts. This is a really interesting story that you should make time for no matter where you fall on the political spectrum. BONUS: Sandra also explains the significance of the “Polis penny” — a penny stapled to a card that looks like a little souvenir for donors to the recall effort — but that is actually a way to skirt campaign finance reporting requirements.   Colorado’s child abuse hotline can’t process tips from social media or email — despite a memo urging change “There are enough gaps in this system that concerns are bound to fall through. We need to be proactive and preventative to ensure the safety of kids.”— Katie Facchinello, who wrote a memo concerning gaps in reporting while working as a communications manager for the Colorado Department of Human Services You likely saw the story: An email inbox at the Colorado Department of Human Services went unchecked for four years, resulting in lost cases. But The Sun’s Jennifer Brown dug deeper into the story — learning that none of the emails in the inbox were from the public, only from inside CDHS, and finding a memo written a year ago that served as a warning. >> NO EMAIL, NO TEXT, NO SOCIAL MEDIA The state’s child abuse hotline (1-844-CO-4-KIDS) was designed to make reporting abuse easier, but as Jen writes, some advocates are worried that without more modern methods of collecting tips, cases are bound to fall through the cracks.   Grand Junction will, in fact, become the Bureau of Land Management’s new headquarters — but not quite as expected Monday afternoon, the news that many Coloradans had been anticipating for months — if not years — came down: the new headquarters for the Bureau of Land Management would be coming to the Western Slope. >> LAKEWOOD GETS MORE JOBS UNDER THE PLAN But as more details were revealed about the reorganization, it became clear that the impact wouldn’t be quite as large as some boosters anticipated, with just 27 jobs coming to the Western Slope and more than 50 heading to Lakewood’s Federal Center. Jesse Paul has more details, plus the still-happy reaction from the head of economic development in Grand Junction. >> GARDNER’S BIG MOMENT OVERSHADOWED? The relocation of the BLM to Colorado has been one of Sen. Cory Gardner’s most consistent goals during his term. But when that goal was finally reached, the good news had to compete for attention with the national conversation about President Trump’s racist tweets targeting four congresswomen. Read more about the latest way Gardner has had to deal with his relationship to Trump.    More from The Sun A crack that emerged in the deck of the eastbound lanes of U.S. 36 on July 12, 2019, was declared a full-blown sinkhole as the supporting earthen structure slowly collapsed into Westminster’s Lower Church Ranch open space on July 15, 2019. People walked from the nearby shopping center to look at the damage. (Doug Conarroe, Special to The Colorado Sun) It’s still unclear who exactly is going to be on the hook for the defects that led to the massive sinkhole on U.S. 36, but Tamara Chuang dug into the data, from the public private partnership that built the structure to the state of toll revenue on the road, to get a clearer picture of what’s going on — and how taxpayers could be on the hook.The 90-day jail sentence for a former Westminster cop accused of raping a handcuffed woman in 2017 while he was supposed to be giving her a ride home from a hospital stoked outrage. Now the FBI is investigating and he could be facing years in federal prison if a case is ultimately brought against him by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Colorado. There is a top tier of Democratic presidential candidates forming. Colorado’s U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet and former Gov. John Hickenlooper are not in it.  More than a third of Colorado students who graduated from high school in 2017 were flagged as needing additional help in reading or math to keep up with college-level coursework. Our friends at Chalkbeat have the whole story.    >> THE SHORTLIST  // What do you think about when you hear “working class?” If you picture car factory workers and coal miners, I’ve got news for you: The entire coal industry employs fewer people than Arby’s. Fast-food, retail, warehouse and call center workers are the vast majority of the working class in America today. And this firsthand account from the front lines of fast food is shocking, not only for the conditions these workers endure, but how technology has made those jobs more stressful and unpredictable — on purpose — in the name of algorithmically squeezing out a little bit more profit for the conglomerates operating them. // Washington Post, Vox // The Republican side of Colorado’s delegation had been pretty quiet about the racist tweets sent by President Trump aimed at four Congresswomen — until yesterday. All three of Colorado’s GOP reps in the House voted against a condemnation of the tweets as racist. Then in an interview with KOA, Sen. Cory Gardner said “I disagree with the president. I wouldn’t have sent those tweets. I think he shouldn’t have done it,” when asked about the tweets. // CNN, KOA NewsRadio // A 17-year-old grizzly bear died following a struggle with arthritis shortly after being moved into the new bear habitat at the Denver Zoo. The Sun wrote earlier this year about the Harmony Hill exhibit and how zoo officials are hoping to help educate humans about how to keep bears (and themselves) safe. // 9News, The Colorado Sun // As we reported, the effort to get the recall of Gov. Polis in front of voters is a Herculean task, requiring more than 10,000 signatures a day. But it’s illegal to offer anyone prizes to sign petitions, like a gun range in Douglas County seemingly did on Facebook (they’ve since clarified.) // The Colorado Sun, 9News    >> TODAY’S THING  Today’s Thing comes from reporter and Sun co-founder Kevin Simpson. Got a thing? Send us an email at things@coloradosun.com and we can share it with the world! Meet Toasty, the mascot for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox Rocky Mountain Vibes. The Thing: Rocky Mountain Vibes Baseball Why You Might Like It: You know you’ve hit on something a bit different when a baseball team’s mascot is a s’more. The Vibes, who replaced the triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox, are the advanced rookie league affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers, which means these kids are young and several worlds away from The Show. But that’s the charm of this level of ball, where you’ll see mind-blowing skill one minute, sandlot miscues the next. And between innings in the Springs, we saw a tricycle race, T-shirt cannons and a sprint between human and dog, so you get the drift that this is a total entertainment package. We got great tickets for $11, but there are endless promotions, including $2 Tuesdays. Best of all, the baseball was immensely fun to watch. You can even get your picture taken with the mascot Toasty — marshmallow body, graham cracker arms and flames for hair. You can’t make this up.    You did it! You finished reading today’s Sunriser, hopefully somewhere with air conditioning or a nice breeze. I received an email this morning telling me it’s been exactly one year since the end of our Kickstarter campaign, during which people who value the role of journalism in Colorado came together and smashed our initial fundraising goal. That outpouring of support will always be a treasured memory for our staff, but to truly make The Sun a sustainable model that will stick around for years to come, we need the kind of direct, ongoing support that a membership provides. If you haven’t already, becoming a member is fast, easy and starts at just $5 per month. The Sun is likely the most efficient journalism-per-dollar outlet in Colorado you can support with your hard-earned money and I hope that the work you’ve read today can help inspire you to head to coloradosun.com/join right now and become a part of our community. And if you’re already a member, thank you so much for helping keep Colorado informed! I’m sure you have a friend or five you could introduce to The Sunriser (coloradosun.com/newsletters) to help grow our community. Every new reader helps. And with that, we’re wrapped for today. Drink lots of water, stay cool and I’ll see you on Friday. — Eric
17 Jul 19
It’s The Truth Wanders

If you ever want to go back in time and go to a place that has barely changed from when Native American tribes roamed the wild west and black gold had yet to be discovered, then drive down the Pacific Coast Highway in Big Sur. If I was on the back of a horse and […]

17 Jul 19
When Angels Fly

Please welcome Suzy Davies to my blog reading friends. Take a seat, Suzy, and we shall begin.  Please introduce yourself to those reading this blog post. My name’s Suzy Davies, and I’m a multi genre author. I’ve written one romance novel and the rest of my books are for children and young adults. Thank you, […]

17 Jul 19
E. Lexi Abbott

Dear readers, you are now up to date on everything I had written before. From this post on this is all new content, and likewise, may be shorter or longer than the last few posts depending on how the story progresses. I hope you continue to enjoy! PART 4 He spent that day staring at […]

17 Jul 19
She Has Wings

I am really loving Rishikesh. I fall in love with India a little more every time we go to a new city. A little more. And a little more, until my heart will just be so wide open that I will love India more than my own country! Just kidding, but I really am enjoying […]

17 Jul 19
Kwakyewa The Storyteller

It’s been a good long minute from my ‘page a day’ writing resolution but I’m back in the saddle. And what a great topic to kick start my intentions: “What’s your favorite part about visiting a new place — the food? The architecture? The people watching?” My favourite part? ALL OF IT. Honestly, I’m waiting […]

17 Jul 19
Prose and Prejudice

Morning walks with my mom are one of the things I treasure in my life. Quite obviously, it started out as a realization of how plump our physique has become.  We would climb the hill near our house before the streaks of golden rays touch the tree tops. We would talk about anything, everything as […]

17 Jul 19
Daily Breeze
By TOM HAYS NEW YORK — The Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman has been sentenced to life behind bars in a U.S. prison, a humbling end for a drug lord once notorious for his ability to kill, bribe or tunnel his way out of trouble. A federal judge in Brooklyn handed down the sentence Wednesday, five months after Guzman’s conviction in an epic drug-trafficking case. The 62-year-old drug lord, who had been protected in Mexico by an army of gangsters and an elaborate corruption operation, was brought to the U.S. to stand trial after he twice escaped from Mexican prisons. Before he was sentenced, Guzman, complained about the conditions of his confinement and told the judge he was denied a fair trial. He said U.S. District Judge Brian Cogan failed to thoroughly investigate claims of juror misconduct. “My case was stained and you denied me a fair trial when the whole world was watching,” Guzman said in court through an interpreter. “When I was extradited to the United States, I expected to have a fair trial, but what happened was exactly the opposite.” The harsh sentence was pre-ordained. The guilty verdict in February at Guzman’s 11-week trial triggered a mandatory sentence of life without parole . The evidence showed that under Guzman’s orders, the Sinaloa cartel was responsible for smuggling mountains of cocaine and other drugs into the United States during his 25-year reign, prosecutors said in court papers re-capping the trial. They also said his “army of sicarios” was under orders to kidnap, torture and murder anyone who got in his way. The defense argued he was framed by other traffickers who became government witnesses so they could get breaks in their own cases. Guzman has been largely cut off from the outside world since his extradition in 2017 and his remarks in the courtroom Wednesday could be the last time the public hears from him. Guzman thanked his family for giving him “the strength to bare this torture that I have been under for the past 30 months.” Wary of his history of escaping from Mexican prisons, U.S. authorities have kept him in solitary confinement in an ultra-secure unit at a Manhattan jail and under close guard at his appearances at the Brooklyn courthouse where his case unfolded. Experts say he will likely wind up at the federal government’s “Supermax” prison in Florence, Colorado, known as the “Alcatraz of the Rockies.” Most inmates at Supermax are given a television, but their only actual view of the outside world is a 4-inch window. They have minimal interaction with other people and eat all their meals in their cells. While the trial was dominated by Guzman’s persona as a near-mythical outlaw who carried a diamond-encrusted handgun and stayed one step ahead of the law, the jury never heard from Guzman himself, except when he told the judge he wouldn’t testify. But evidence at Guzman’s trial suggested his decision to stay quiet at the defense table was against his nature: Cooperating witnesses told jurors he was a fan of his own rags-to-riches narco story, always eager to find an author or screenwriter to tell it. He famously gave an interview to American actor Sean Penn while he was a fugitive, hiding in the mountains after accomplices built a long tunnel to help him escape from a Mexican prison. There also were reports Guzman was itching to testify in his own defense until his attorneys talked him out of it, making his sentencing a last chance to seize the spotlight. [related_articles location=”left” show_article_date=”false” article_type=”automatic-primary-tag”] At the trial, Guzman’s lawyers argued that he was the fall guy for other kingpins who were better at paying off top Mexican politicians and law enforcement officials to protect them while the U.S. government looked the other way. Prosecution descriptions of an empire that paid for private planes, beachfront villas and a private zoo were a fallacy, his lawyers say. And the chances the U.S. government could collect on a roughly $12.5 billion forfeiture order are zero, they add. The government’s case, defense attorney Jeffrey Lichtman said recently, was “all part of a show trial.”