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Flashes

Those Amazing (Former) Suns
While the Phoenix Suns are emerging from their torpor--Danny Ainge's pained pouts apparently making all the difference--The Flash can't help but marvel at the excellent team the Suns have fielded for other NBA franchises.

Consider this lineup: Charles Barkley (41 minutes per game for the Rockets, 15.8 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 20.8 points); Jeff Hornacek (31.6 minutes per game for the Jazz, 4 assists, 15.6 points); Dan Majerle (41.4 minutes per game for the Heat, .369 three-point field goal percentage, 5.4 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 14.7 points); Cedric Ceballos (before he was hurt, 34.9 minutes per game for the Lakers, 6.6 rebounds, 10.8 points); Armon Gilliam (31.2 minutes per game for the Bucks, 9.9 rebounds, 12 points); Steve Kerr (24.8 minutes per game for the Bulls, .444 three-point percentage, 2.5 assists, 8.4 points); Andrew Lang (23.6 minutes per game for the Bucks, 5.7 rebounds, 5.1 points). And although he never appeared in a Suns uniform, let's not forget Jayson Williams, the Suns' first-round pick in 1990, who just happens to be leading the league in rebounding, 16.1 per game, and scoring 13.8 per game, for the Nets!

There are myriad other ex-Suns who aren't having much impact: Elliot Perry, Chris Carr, Rafael Addison, Eddie Johnson, Mark West, Antonio Lang, Xavier McDaniel, Anthony Goldwire.

We also must include Ed Pinckney on this list (he's a Heat). Easy Ed serves to remind us of this agony: The Suns drafted him ahead of Karl Malone in 1985. And Jay Humphries ahead of John Stockton in 1984 . . .

Trailer Trash
The Flash just received an early Xmas present from Harkins Theatres and the YMCA--a gift bow fashioned from a snippet of a coming-attractions trailer. "Made by kids for kids" to benefit local YMCA after-school programs and summer day camps, the 20,000 bows were constructed from 75,000 feet of trailer stock donated by Harkins. The bows, which sell for a buck a pop, are currently on sale in the theater chain's lobbies.

In a press release that accompanied The Flash's bow, theater magnate Dan Harkins waxed enthusiastic about the wholesome holiday project: "For just one dollar, moviegoers can take home a piece of Hollywood, recycle and contribute to YMCA programs."

But after deconstructing this bow and holding the film clip up to the light, The Flash discovered that Harkins and the kids were offering a lot more than just "a piece of Hollywood." Mainly, a piece of actress Maria Conchita Alonso in the form of a steamy clip from the unrated Caught, in which the actress is being groped--frame by frame--by a young man.

As they say in Hollywood, "That's a wrap!"

Tribulations
In the wake of the Tent City riots, the Mesa Tribune (and the Scottsdale Progress-Tribune and the Chandler Arizonan Tribune and the Tempe Daily News Tribune and probably several unknown Tribunes) prominently displayed an erroneous but eye-catching illustration which seemed to indicate that Sheriff Joke Arpaio's budget had been slashed in recent years. In fact, county supervisors were quick to point out, the sheriff's budget has steadily increased since 1994.

But that was nothing compared to the brilliance the various Tribs showed on December 7, a day which will live in infamy. The rest of the Valley's media felt that the latest goof coming out of Arpaio's office raised serious questions about the sheriff himself: How could The Crime Avenger give the run of his offices and jails to an imposter, soldier David Pecard, who used his status to check inmates out of Arpaio's jails? Two of those inmates accuse Pecard of sexually assaulting them.

After he duped Arpaio for more than two weeks--and taking it upon himself to provide personal protection for the sheriff during the November 17 Tent City riots--Pecard was found out and he was put under military house arrest. Only after Pecard went AWOL and was rearrested December 5 did Arpaio make Pecard's misdeeds known.

The sheriff and his public relations machine have been spinning hard ever since, claiming to be the innocent victims of a master criminal, and placing blame on the military for not sniffing out Pecard earlier. And the gaggle of Tribunes were willing to help Arpaio out in that mission right from the start.

On Saturday, December 7, the front-page banner in the Arizona Republic proclaimed "Phony detective dupes Sheriff's Office," with the subheadline, "AWOL soldier gained access to jail, files."

Meanwhile, the Tribs' headline, "Alleged Impostor Fools Army," and its subheadline, "Sheriff: Fake Investigator Charged," made it seem Arpaio was, if anything, the hero of the story, rather than its fool.

The Flash wonders if The Crime Avenger has an "in" with the Tribs. Oh. Could it be that Arpaio's daughter, Sherry Boas, is a reporter for the Tribs? And that Arpaio's son-in-law, Phil Boas, is the Tribs' city editor?

Naaaaah.


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