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The Beat

Layla Bohm, Kyla Cathey & Lauren Nelson
  • Layla Bohm, Kyla Cathey & Lauren Nelson
  • News-Sentinel Assistant City Editor Layla Bohm, Lodi Living Editor Lauren Nelson and Copy Editor Kyla Cathey share their takes on life in Lodi — and beyond.
Tuesday 06/22/2010
Labyrinth on the cliff

A few Fridays ago, I took the day off work to go with my friend Laura to her appointment at UC San Francisco Medical Center.

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, June 22, 2010 9:19 am. Updated: 9:22 am. Comments (0)

Friday 06/18/2010
Beer-can chicken

With Father's Day just a couple of days away, I thought I'd share something that my own dad is newly obsessed with: Beer-can chicken. He recently found these little stands (about $5 at Walmart and Lowes), and now I think it's his favorite way to enjoy chicken. The chicken comes out so moist, it falls off the bone — and it's pretty fun to make.

Posted in The beat on Friday, June 18, 2010 9:15 am. Updated: 9:19 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 06/02/2010
Kingwood, Texas?

Is it wrong for me to be very amused by the website of Kingwood, Texas? It doesn't hurt that their town motto is apparently "the surfable forest," and one of their featured businesses is Heather the Pet Nanny (whose website features a rather fascinating bouncing yellow tennis ball). And, when asked their favorite meat to eat, visitors to the website overwhelmingly selected beef.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 05/20/2010
Mt. St. Helens

This week marked 30 years since Mt. St. Helens erupted, which means it was a good excuse for lots of journalists to write about the event. If I lived a bit closer, I most definitely would have gotten in on that action, because I've always been fascinated by the volcano -- perhaps because I grew up at the foot of a 14,000-foot mountain.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, May 20, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 04/27/2010
Saving on books

If you're a book-lover, there's a good way to save money on books (other than borrowing them from the Lodi Public Library).

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, April 27, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 04/19/2010
Boston 2010

My morning got a bit messed up, so I wasn't able live-blog the Boston Marathon as I did last year, but I followed as best I could. Between Twitter and the Boston Athletic Association, I tracked about a dozen runners, and heard about a bunch more. The men's winner was Robert Cheruiyot of Kenya (a 21-year-old farmer who said he's going to buy some cows with his prize money), who set a course record; American Ryan Hall was fourth and set a record for the fastest-ever American on the course. Teyba Erkesso of Ethiopia won the women's race by three seconds.

Posted in The beat on Monday, April 19, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 04/14/2010
Eating well for cheap

There's a pretty interesting story on the wire today about eating well on a food stamp budget. To come up with the money, they took the average amount of food assistance given to a family of four: $275.53 per month, or $68.88 per week.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, April 14, 2010 12:00 am. Updated: 3:02 pm. Comments (0)

Wednesday 04/07/2010
Back on track

Since I last posted about somehow messing up my neck, I should probably update my status: The neck is much better, and I'm back on track to run a marathon in 25 days.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, April 7, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 03/29/2010
Down and out

I'm typing this from my house, on a Monday afternoon. I should be at work, but instead I'm wasting one of my carefully saved paid days off. This weekend, the weather was glorious in every possible way, but that also went to waste.

Posted in The beat on Monday, March 29, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Sunday 03/14/2010
Is it time to end Daylight Saving Time?

I'm a bit biased on this: My answer has been an emphatic "yes" since high school, despite the "fall back" giving me an extra hour to work on my thesis one busy, busy college weekend.

Posted in The beat on Sunday, March 14, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 03/12/2010
Want to update your landscaping?

You know what's a lot cheaper than going and buying several flowering trees or evergreens? Joining the Arbor Day Foundation — at $10 for six months — and getting 10 trees for free with your membership.

Posted in The beat on Friday, March 12, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 03/10/2010
Could Lodi be a culinary Mecca?

In his latest entry, Jon Bjork (the News-Sentinel's "Wine Guy") wrote about the Pairing Perfection competition, and it inspired a thought: Lodi is thinking too small.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, March 10, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 02/25/2010
My dogs, my heart

My name is Lauren, and I have the best dogs in the world. Seriously. I just felt like showing them off. Happy Thursday.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, February 25, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Music of the Site

Have you ever wondered what your Web site sounded like? Not the tone of your writing or the "loudness" of your design, but the actual music created by the code?

Posted in The beat on Thursday, February 25, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 02/22/2010
Never too old

So many times I hear people say, "I can't run. My knees are too old." Or they even try to say, "I'm too old."

Posted in The beat on Monday, February 22, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 02/18/2010
A chance to change the world

What would you do with $100,000?

Posted in The beat on Thursday, February 18, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 02/15/2010
Ask a librarian!

In my last post, I suggested some neat online communities that will help you find the half-remembered books and movies of your childhood, and commenter eveleve brought up an excellent point: You can also ask at the Lodi Library.

Posted in The beat on Monday, February 15, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 02/12/2010
Happy Valentine's Day!!!!!

How was that for a large amount of exclamation points in one blog post title? If you know me, that would seem a bit out of character. Don't worry, I'm making up for it by wishing all of you a

Posted in The beat on Friday, February 12, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 02/11/2010
What was that book?

Have you ever suddenly remembered a book you read as a kid, but couldn't remember the author or title, just a few vague details? Maybe you just remember that it was about a girl who knew thread magic and her friends, or that it was a picture book about a milkman that rhymed. Or maybe it was a book you read as an adult, that seemed like it was written by John Grisham, but none of his books sound right.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, February 11, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 02/10/2010
Why I run

I was minding my own business, on an assignment for work, when everything stopped for a moment. My heart began racing, my hands started shaking and I lost all track of what I'd been doing. Someone had invaded the space known as my mental well-being, and it was an unsettling feeling. Then I got mad at myself for letting this person have such an effect on me. I hated myself for not being able to maintain control.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, February 10, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 02/09/2010
Super Bowl eats

It didn't take long on Sunday for me to realize that I pretty much had the worst Super Bowl pool numbers possible. Once the excitement fled, my family and I focused on the food, two perfect SB dishes: Gourmet nachos and chili. Both were might tasty and included beer. And I'm not ashamed to say the recipes came from two TV goddesses, Oprah and Martha Stewart. I highly recommend

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, February 9, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 02/01/2010
Local spring races

I'm behind in writing up race reports (yes, Tim, I know I need to get to the Angel Island trail run report), but right now I'm looking ahead. After having to do some rehab on a stressed out Achilles tendon and the tendons surrounding it, I've been getting steadily better, even as I ramp up the weekly mileage. Here's what's on my spring schedule:

Posted in The beat on Monday, February 1, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 01/29/2010
Battle for the golden ladle

Today, the News-Sentinel celebrated the thing that only happens once a year: The chili cookoff. Staffers rolled into the parking lot early this morning, weary from cooking late into the night. Even with half batches dumped on the car floor, they were ready for victory. The building, from the newsroom to the circulation department, filled with the slightly-unappetizing aroma of chili, roasted peppers and meat. And at noon, it was on.

Posted in The beat on Friday, January 29, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 01/26/2010
No play for the pooches

While dog/house-sitting this weekend, I thought it would be so much fun to take Captain and Sara (my dog) to the Vinewood dog park. Like I said, I thought. But I was so wrong. We pulled up to realize the entire park was flooded almost to the gates (way more than these two-days-later photos show).

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, January 26, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 01/25/2010
My new obsession

I'm happy to say that I'm sticking to one of my new goals and trying my hand at different arts. This month, I learned (and still need to refine) soldering, pronounced "sautering." I always though metal work would be such a hassle and expensive, but it's really not. All you need is a small-ish soldering iron (not a blow torch, as many keep asking me), flux (this clear-ish goo), copper foil and solder that comes wound up like wire. Then, of course, there's the glass and images.

Posted in The beat on Monday, January 25, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 01/19/2010
Chasing rainbows

While Long Beach

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 12:00 am. Updated: 3:01 pm. Comments (0)

Monday 01/18/2010
The rainy day life

Happy rainy holiday! If you're at work, you probably have three things working against you: 1.) it's a Monday 2.) it's raining and windy 3.) it's a holiday and you're at the office. While there's something nice about starting a new, fresh week, you have to admit there are other ways you'd rather be spending the day. So if you are sitting at home eating your Cheerios and watching "Reegis," get up for a little while and let us holiday office dwellers live vicariously through you.

Posted in The beat on Monday, January 18, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 01/15/2010
Helping Haiti

In yesterday's Regional Roundup, we shared some information from the District Attorney's office warning county residents to be wary of charities claiming they would help the people in Haiti after the devastating earthquake that has killed tens of thousands.

Posted in The beat on Friday, January 15, 2010 12:00 am. Updated: 3:02 pm. Comments (0)

Thursday 01/14/2010
It's good to be back

Today, I got a new work computer. And it's already changing my life.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, January 14, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 01/05/2010
'The Princess and the Frog'

I hate to horn in on film critic Jason Wallis' territory, which is one reason why I rarely say anything about the movies I'm watching here. (The other is because I normally watch them two or three years after they're out of theaters. On the cutting edge, I am not.)

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, January 5, 2010 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 12/30/2009
Caffeinated to death

In this season of eating too many sweets and drinking too many spirits, here's another uplifting take on over-consumption: Death by Caffeine.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, December 30, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 12/21/2009
Unreasonable expectations?

When I lived in Queens, N.Y., there was a fantastic company called FreshDirect. Basically, even living in Queens instead of Manhattan, going to the grocery store was a nightmare. Parking was ridiculous if you had a car, you had to cart groceries back on the subway if you didn't, you had to pay to rent shopping carts, and rarely was the produce in grocery stores fresh, since most of it had been shipped via train from California.

Posted in The beat on Monday, December 21, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 12/18/2009
Football vs. trial

What happens when attorneys happen to live in an area of the United States where college football is almost as much of a necessity as water? They ask for a trial delay to go see their team play football. (They're playing in the BCS title game in Pasadena, so yes, it is a big deal. An earth-shatteringly big deal for Alabama residents.)

Posted in The beat on Friday, December 18, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 12/14/2009
Christmas lights in Petaluma

I love Christmas lights, and this article makes me want to make the trek to Petaluma just to see a seven-minute Christmas light show. Since I can't quite fit that trip into my work week, I have to make do by watching the video the paper included in that link. He's also got a webcam that I'll have to check out this evening when I'm not baking cookies and watching House.

Posted in The beat on Monday, December 14, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 12/10/2009
Some holiday cheer for retail employees

I will admit right now that I have never worked retail. I'm not a big shopper, either. Black Friday, for me, was like the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade — fun to visit once, for the experience, but not something I ever want to repeat.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, December 10, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 12/07/2009
Vote on the Top Stories of 2009

For the first time, the Associated Press is letting Facebook users vote — in a non-scientific poll — on the Top 10 Stories for 2009. Choices include the inauguration of President Obama, Sarah Palin resigning as Alaska's governor, the swine flu, the Fort Hood shooting, and outside the U.S. the protests in Iran, drug violence in Mexico and the coup in Honduras, among other things. And if you think a story is missing, there is a space to offer suggestions; personally, I had a few!

Posted in The beat on Monday, December 7, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 12/04/2009
CIM 09

In a little more than 36 hours, thousands of runners are going to start pounding the streets of Sacramento for the 27th annual California International Marathon. (That's 26.2 miles, though there's also a four-person relay.)

Posted in The beat on Friday, December 4, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 12/02/2009
Layla's 2009 Black Friday

Once again I found myself waking up at stupid o'clock on the Friday after Thanksgiving to go shopping. Every year I hate shopping a little more, and this year I almost nixed it. But I'm a glutton for punishment, and there's also a strange part of me that will do almost anything in order to have a story to tell.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, December 2, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 11/20/2009
Killer name

I was reading the birth announcements in the paper the other day and felt a little sorry for the baby who now bears the name of Nora Mora.

Posted in The beat on Friday, November 20, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Thursday 11/19/2009
Is a "mandatory gratuity" an oxymoron?

In Bethlehem, Penn., a group of college students visited a pub. According to the students, they waited over an hour for their food, had to find their own cutlery and napkins, and had to go to the bar for soda refills instead of their server doing it. When they tried to pay their bill, they say, they couldn't find the waiter; they eventually found her smoking behind the restaurant. And when they wanted to talk to a manager, there wasn't one available.

Posted in The beat on Thursday, November 19, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 11/16/2009
Ridiculous Thanksgiving food

Unless you've been living under a rock for the past several years, you've heard of turducken. But how about turbaconducken?

Posted in The beat on Monday, November 16, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Friday 10/30/2009
Metal vs. Corolla

It seems that many of my trips to the Stockton courthouse involve something unexpected, whether it's a flood in the courthouse, crazy testimony, a defendant hitting on me, someone cussing at me, or an attack/shooting in a courtroom. The latest incident happened Tuesday, though at least this time it was outside the courthouse.

Posted in The beat on Friday, October 30, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 10/27/2009
We could use a little more naivete

Working nights in Lodi, there aren't a lot of ways to connect to people (especially if you aren't a big drinker). So one of the ways I pass the time after work is on Internet communities. A few of them are about certain hobbies or topics, but I also have a couple I lurk and very rarely comment in "just for fun," and my favorite of those has theme days (Macro Mondays, Off Topic Tuesdays).

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, October 27, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Monday 10/26/2009
Farewell, Geocities

Most people have probably never heard of Geocities. The free Web host — basically a huge Web site that provided space for people to create their own Web sites — wasn't popular for very long. But for a few years when I was in high school and just discovering HTML, Geocities hosted my own site and those of many of my friends.

Posted in The beat on Monday, October 26, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Sunday 10/11/2009
Chicago Marathon 09: Brief version

Well, folks, I did it. I finished my second marathon, so I can now say, "I run marathons"!! My bottom line goal was 4:19, to beat my previous marathon time of 4:20:28. I did that. My main goal was 4:09. And I beat that for a total time of 4:08:41.

Posted in The beat on Sunday, October 11, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 10/07/2009
'Jersey Boys' in Chicago

For those who have only seen movies in a theater, get yourselves to the 'real' kind of theater: Go see a musical. You'll see phenomenal acting (there are no re-takes on the live stage) and hear great singing (unless you hate that for some reason, but there are plenty of great plays, too). You won't sit in front of a screen while people around you do things like check their cell phones, get up to use the bathroom and chat about unrelated things.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, October 7, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 10/06/2009
Going pink in October

In case you missed it, we've entered October. Aside from being the month of spooky Halloween fun, October is host to Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, October 6, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 09/30/2009
Chicago Marathon: 11 days

Exactly 11 days from now, I will be more than three hours into the Chicago Marathon. Eleven days! It seems like just yesterday that the countdown clock was at 114 days.

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, September 30, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Tuesday 09/29/2009
TV is back — do you know where your remote is?

I'm behind on the times, and I'm not ashamed to tell you.

Posted in The beat on Tuesday, September 29, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

Wednesday 09/23/2009
Big woof, little woof

When I ran over to Tillie's Coffee for a caffeine boost yesterday morning, I had no idea I was going to have an overload of cuteness at the door. Take a look:

Posted in The beat on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 12:00 am. Comments (0)

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