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Today's word on journalism

November 14, 2008

Fun Stuff

1. "The days of the digital watch are numbered."--Tom Stoppard, playwright (Thanks to Tom Hodges)

2. Palin-dromes: "Wasilla's all I saw." "Harass Sarah!"

3. "If you don't think too good, don’t think too much."--Ted Williams (1918-2002), philosopher-athlete (Thanks to alert WORDster Karl Petruso)

4. "I don't know anything that mars good literature so completely as too much truth."--Mark Twain (1835-1910), writer

5. "The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity." --Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), writer

6. "The First Amendment was the iPod of 1791." --Ken Paulson, editor, USA Today

7. "That's not writing. That's typing." --Truman Capote (1924-1964), writer

8. "The future of the book is the blurb." --Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980), sociologist

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Valley law enforcement gears up for a safe Halloween

By Brittny Goodsell Jones

October 31, 2008 | LOGAN -- Fiery haystacks and homemade bombs probably won't explode trick-or-treaters into the Halloween weekend this year. That's because the number of incidents that usually happen on Halloween night in Cache Valley has gone done in the last five years, said Chief Deputy Dave Bennett of Cache County Sheriff's Office.

"There was one city in the county that had Molotov cocktails," Bennett said. "Kids filling glass bottles with gasoline, putting rags on top, throwing it and having it explode. It was pretty crazy for a couple years around the valley."

Now, there are few, if any, reports of Molotov cocktails that happen over the holiday weekend. Bennett said he's seen his share of pranks but is confident this year will be calmer. Although there are still people who smash pumpkins and mailboxes on Halloween, most people stay out of trouble, he said.

He attributes this to residents being more aware and careful as they go about the holiday's activities.

"The last several years it's been very sporadic," he said. "Once in awhile we find a hay bale on fire in the street or some pumpkins being smashed. Other than that, it hasn't been real crazy."

Still, rural places such as Wellsville still require surveillance on Halloween. Bennett said Wellsville can get hit a lot because residences are more spread out. Also, the farming atmosphere means there is easier access to hay bales.

Sgt. John Seamons of North Park Police Department said his end of the valley doesn't see much action on Halloween. Most large parties happen in Logan or at Utah State University, he said.

The largest incident around the Hyde Park area happened more than 15 years ago when a van was stolen by juveniles and driven into a canal. Since then, the typical problems the NPPD face this weekend will be smashed mailboxes and pumpkins, Seamons said.

"That's throughout the whole city and that starts later at night," he said. "We have already had a rash of it with kids in cars smashing pumpkins, tearing out mailboxes -- typical prankster stuff. That's the only big crime issues we have."

Typically after kids end trick-or-treating, NPPD officers patrol busier streets and head to the highway looking for suspicious behavior from drivers.

Chief Deputy Bennett said the number of drunk drivers is average on Halloween night -- in fact, it isn't different than other holiday throughout the year. "It's not a big issue," he said.

There will be more than 20 extra deputies from CCSO out on the road Halloween night, he said. Contracts are also set up with neighboring towns so two or three deputies will be on hand to help out with patrolling.

One thing he cautions parents who drive their kids around to do is to turn car headlights off while they wait in the car for their kids. When another car comes down the road on the opposite side, parked cars with headlights on make it harder to see kids crossing the street.

"There are kids all over the streets, especially in little towns without street lights -- they're dashing across the street," he said. "Pay attention."

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