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Slap Shots 

Wednesday, Jan 10 1996
52 Weeks That Shook the Bay Area -- A 1995 Timeline
January, Week 1
An alleged San Jose gang member accidentally shoots himself in the foot during a drive-by and is easily subdued by nearby residents.

January, Week 2
Forty-Niner fans offer bizarre good luck hexes for the upcoming NFC Championship match against the Dallas Cowboys, among them: going to the highest reaches of Candlestick Park and burning an old sock with holes in it, and inviting a 49er cheerleader to stand on her head, then chewing a piece of beef gristle and swallowing it.

January, Week 3
As SFMOMA opens, Jerry Garcia smashes a brand-new BMW 525i into a retaining wall on U.S. 101 outside Mill Valley.

January, Week 4
Over 5,000 fans line up in drizzling rain to watch Joe Montana promote Joe Boxer underwear at Southland Mall in Hayward.

February, Week 1
A 16-year-old Balboa High student denies eight felony counts of computer hacking, but does admit to logging on one year ago and changing his biology grade from a D to a C.

February, Week 2
A BART operator driving a southbound train to Fremont at 36 mph leans out a window and bonks his head on a signal pole.

February, Week 3
President Clinton stops by the restaurant Lulu and tips 20 percent on a $400 tab; members of the press consume meals worth a total of $300 and leave no tip whatsoever.

February, Week 4
A man accused of murdering his girlfriend calls the Howard Stern Show from the Santa Clara County Jail, confesses on the air, and makes stupid jokes about the death penalty. Stern replies, "California has lethal injection, so you better get your arm ready."

March, Week 1
More than $10,000 is found partially burned in a Financial District mailbox. Postal Inspector Frank Decor avows, "We are curious."

March, Week 2
Attempting to rid a woman of demons, five members of a small Christian sect in Dublin strike her for six hours, until she is dead.

March, Week 3
Retired since 1992, Berkeley's Waving Man returns briefly to street corners on his 85th birthday, greeting passing motorists with a friendly salute.

March, Week 4
Swimmer Raymond Vuelker III leaves Virginia's College of William and Mary, hops a plane, and 11 hours later jumps off the Golden Gate Bridge, leaving no reason for his suicide.

April, Week 1
A Yerba Buena Gardens security guard spies two women kissing and makes them stop. In the ensuing controversy, Yerba Buena Gardens Manager Margot Crosman defends the guard, saying the two females were "kind of getting out of hand."

April, Week 2
Swanson's "Kids Fun Feast Chompin' Chicken Drumlets" dinners are recalled in California and 28 other states, after children find hard plastic pieces in the food.

April, Week 3
A survey by the National Federation of Independent Business finds that fewer than half of the 5,000 small-business respondents own a modem, 30 percent have no fax, over 90 percent have no voice mail, and 81 percent don't use pagers.

April, Week 4
In his 16th attack, the Unabomber kills the president of the California timber industry's association in Sacramento.

May, Week 1
In celebration of Bike Commute Day, Mayor Frank Jordan is photographed riding a bicycle and wearing a colorful, ill-fitting helmet. Seven months later he will be voted out of office.

May, Week 2
The fourth annual Dr. Dan Reid Memorial Invitational Solo Piping Competition is held at the Westin St. Francis Hotel, combining traditional Scottish bagpipe music with California cuisine and wine.

May, Week 3
Not-to-be-missed events include the Bay to Breakers race, the "Crossroads of the West" gun show at the Cow Palace, and the premiere of the film Casper, starring Bill Pullman and Uncle Stinkie.

May, Week 4
A benefit is announced to save the old St. Mark's Lutheran Church on O'Farrell. The show includes hymns, a Garrison Keillor monologue, and a 6-foot statue made of Jell-O.

June, Week 1
The financially strapped AC Transit system is found to be shelling out $600 a month toward a crash-pad apartment for General Manager Sharon Banks, who earns $140,000 a year and doesn't want to commute home every night.

June, Week 2
Despite the chanting of 11 Tibetan monks from the Gyuto Tantric Choir, a snow leopard named Shin dies at the San Francisco Zoo.

June, Week 3
Big-shot supermodels -- including Christy Turlington -- graciously waive their $10,000-a-day fees and are photographed covered in cigarette butts, rusting bottle caps, and rotting fish as part of a local public relations campaign called Clean City Coalition.

June, Week 4
When a perpetually talentless Nancy Sinatra appears in concert at the Fillmore, the crowd "has to fight the temptation to laugh at her," according to one reviewer.

July, Week 1
Reporters gleefully note that Hugh Grant hooker Divine Brown, aka Stella Marie Thompson, has been arrested 14 times in the Tenderloin since 1991.

July, Week 2
Bay Area activist Harry Wu is arrested in China and charged with obtaining state secrets.

July, Week 3
When Princess Di stops at SFO airport to change planes, airport spokesman Ron Wilson proudly welcomes her to the city, to which she responds, "Thank you very much, whoever you are."

July, Week 4
Over 2,400 attend the International Psychoanalytical Congress at the Marriott Hotel for a Week of meetings, panel discussions, and screenings of the films Vertigo and The Conversation.

August, Week 1
An inebriated man falls out of a tree 12 feet and impales himself on a metal fence outside the BART station at 16th Street and Mission. It takes rescuers 45 minutes to free him.

August, Week 2
Guitarist Jerry Garcia dies, schoolteacher Alex Dunne (son of writer Dominick) turns up missing, and Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams is fired by Pacific Bell.

August, Week 3
A former Hell's Angel charged with murder asks the Mendocino County Court for CR>CR>CR>a laptop in his cell, to aid in mounting his defense.

August, Week 4
After one of his workers is shot during a robbery, a Salinas shop owner drags the injured man outside the store and leaves him there bleeding. The owner then claims the employee is actually a customer, because he carries no workers' compensation insurance.

September, Week 1
Joe DiMaggio Jr. is arrested in Martinez after his bicycle smacks into a van. He is suspected of riding a bike while under the influence of alcohol.

September, Week 2
Angela Alioto's sweetie, Peter Rowland, is resentenced to three years in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $150,000 to two women he fleeced in an investment scam.

September, Week 3
The Rev. Cecil Williams undergoes prostate surgery, in a procedure lasting, according to local media, exactly 26 minutes.

September, Week 4
On the eve of an inspection by the city's handicapped-access authorities, the Gold Club topless emporium agrees to remodeling plans to accommodate the disabled. Access Appeals Commissioner Terry Hogan, who uses a wheelchair, exclaims that he's "so disappointed" because compliance snuffs commission plans to close the club. "This was my first opportunity to go to a topless cub."

October, Week 1
Three pit bulls owned by Courtney Love's father are ordered destroyed after they escape from a pen in Los Altos and attack a Labrador retriever and its owner.

October, Week 2
Levi Strauss unveils its brand-new World Wide Web site. The section on youth culture is called the "Fly Zone."

October, Week 3
The San Francisco City Store opens at Pier 39, offering parking meters, road reflectors, and Department of Public Works brooms.

October, Week 4
SFPD officers arrest three marijuana activists at the Hooker's Ball for possession of "green vegetable matter." When one of the three, grow-your-own author Ed Rosenthal, arrives at the jail, it is empty except for hookers.

November, Week 1
TCR>wo CR>AriCR>zona Deadhead astronomers with lots of time on their hands name a newly discovered asteroid "Garcia."

November, Week 2
While shooting a scene for The Van, Robert De Niro is ticketed for driving his humvee between the crossing arms of the King Street intersection as a train approaches.

November, Week 3
Lombard Street reopens, and Mayor Jordan uses the "crookedest street in the world" as an opportunity to tell a crowd, "I never want it said that San Francisco has the crookedest government in America."

November, Week 4
A federal grand jury indicts an Oakland research physicist for allegedly accepting nearly $250,000 in federal grant money to develop a laser, after he had already stopped working on the project.

December, Week 1
After much debate, Stanford President Gerhard Casper kills a marketing plan that urges the use of words like "incomparable," "stunning," and "vibrant" to promote the university.

December, Week 2
As a house in Sea Cliff slides into a sinkhole created by a burst sewage line, Willie Brown wins the mayoral election runoff.

December, Week 3
An Exxon refinery in Benecia is slapped with a public nuisance violation after residents in Marin, Solano, and Contra Costa counties complain of a nauseating rotten-egg smell.

December, Week 4
Police Chief Tony Ribera is cleared of sexual harassment charges against Officer Joanne Welsh, and conveniently resigns Jan. 8.

By Jack Boulware

About The Author

Jack Boulware


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