With all those extra people banging around your house during the holidays, you’re probably ready for a little peace and quiet.
Well, tough. There’s so much great stuff to make fun of this year that I just can’t keep my voice down.
Come on. Suck it up. I’m not asking you to do the impossible, such as memorizing the lyrics to more than one stanza of Good King Wenceslas.
Yes, it’s time again for the Bobby Awards, now in their 17th glorious year.
As you should know by now, the Bobbys honor the best and the worst, the goofiest and the dumbest, the oddest and most embarrassing moments our area had to offer during the 12 months gone by.
Unlike those overhyped national awards — the Oscars, the Emmys, the Grammys, the Tonys — the Bobbys are locally produced and commercial-free.
They also are biased, insensitive, slanted, sarcastic, one-sided and unfair.
And therein lies their beauty.
?ODDEST CRIME: The Portage County Sheriff’s Office issued a news release about an apparent homicide that took place on Thanksgiving. It said the victim “was discovered in his residence, and fowl play was suspected.” Deputies quickly ruled out a nearby goose and chicken and identified a neighboring turkey as a “bird of interest.”
?THE DOG ATE HER FAREWELL SPEECH: A new principal hired by Copley High School, Marisa Bavaro of Brunswick, lasted all of five hours before turning in her resignation. And how did she resign? By sending a text message. And what did the text message say? “Can’t take job. Don’t call.”
?TWEETY BIRD AWARD: In June, former Gov. Ted Strickland let it be known he was pulling hard for the Kent State University baseball team. He sent out a tweet that read, “Great win tonight by the Zips against FL in the College World Series.” Too bad the University of Akron Golden Flashes already had been eliminated.
?BEST BOMB THREAT: If you spotted an unattended metal object at Akron City Hall ... and the object was cylindrical and had duct tape over both ends ... and the object had the word “Kaboom” written on it ... you’d probably perk up a bit, wouldn’t you? That’s exactly what happened in October. The building swiftly was evacuated. The Summit County Bomb Squad, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Akron police and fire departments swarmed the scene. Authorities eventually discovered the object was a homemade walking stick owned by a guy named Natural Hunka Kaboom. Seriously. A 65-year-old Akron man who legally changed his name in 2009, Kaboom is a regular at City Council meetings and left his walking stick behind after attending one. The item in question began life as an extendable shower rod. Don’t ask.
?FUNNIEST ONLINE COMMENT: It appeared in reference to a story about a female panhandler in South Akron who was holding a sign that read, “Not homeless. Need boobs.” A reader wrote, “I never give the panhandlers money because I am concerned that it will go toward drugs or alcohol and not the intended cause. In this case, giving her money for a boob job, what guarantee do I have that she won’t spend the money on feeding or clothing her kids?”
?ROAD & TRACK TROPHY: In April, thieves stole an ATM from Cafe 7 in Springfield Township. That was the easy part. Then they had to figure out how to open it. They decided the best method would be to drive their car over it. Turns out that was not the best method. The car got stuck on top of it.
?BEST CAMPAIGN SIGN: During a year in which campaign advertising reached new highs in frequency and new lows in false information and nastiness, a message on the sign board in front of Broadman Baptist Church in Cuyahoga Falls was good for a smile. The top line read: “We love God.” Immediately below: “I am God and I approve of this message.”
?WORST RESTAURANT REVIEW: At a Wendy’s on Kent Road in Stow, a 28-year-old man yelled so many profanities at employees that he eventually was charged with disorderly conduct. What set him off? He had been told the restaurant was out of baked potatoes.
?BEST DOMESTIC DISPUTE: An upscale neighborhood in Copley Township would have been right at home in the land of Jerry Springer. “A Kings Court woman, 29, was issued a citation for disorderly conduct,” the news item read. “Her boyfriend called the police saying she was damaging property inside and outside his residence. She apparently became agitated when he started having sex with another female in front of her.” Some women have no sense of humor.
?MOST CONSCIENTIOUS CRIMINAL: In July, residents of Phelps Avenue in Cuyahoga Falls told police someone broke into their apartment and “moved a chair and game table, cooked a turkey hamburger, cleaned the dishes and left.”
?WORST SCOOP IN 25 YEARS: Chuck Booms, one of the morning personalities on the normally well-grounded Cleveland sports-talk station WKRK (92.3-FM), phoned the afternoon show and breathlessly announced what he said could be “the biggest story in Cleveland football in 25 years.” He said an impeccable source told him that, contrary to widespread speculation, Peyton Manning would re-sign with the Colts, clearing the way for the Browns to draft coveted Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck. Less than an hour later, the news broke that Manning had been cut by the Colts. Perhaps Booms has a future in meteorology.
?RAGING HORMONES AWARD: In March, Akron cops were called to break up a gentlemen’s disagreement at Kenmore High School. One of the responding officers told the dispatcher the two students had resolved their differences: “They have agreed to share the Victoria Secret catalog.”
?PERRY MASON AWARD: During the big Craigslist murder trial, Summit County Assistant Prosecutor Jon Baumoel got down to basics when questioning a computer expert in open court: “What is the Internet?” And all this time I thought only defense attorneys got paid by the hour.
?FAINT PRAISE TROPHY: After the state released its report card for school districts, Akron Public Schools posted an online statement from Superintendent David James expressing his delight at the schools’ progress. Part of it read: “Our students are getting a year’s worth of learning value out of every school year, which should be encouraging to Akron’s parents and taxpayers.” Glad our students are no longer getting only four or five months’ worth of learning out of every school year.
?CHEEKIEST CRIMINAL: A 23-year-old Akron man was arrested for trying to hide a bottle of wine during a traffic stop. When he got to the jail, officers searched him and found “a small plastic bag of crack cocaine between the cheeks of his buttocks.” Yes, they found crack in his crack. Allegedly.
?NICK NOLTE AWARD: Not since the actor’s infamous post-DUI photo a decade ago has a funkier mug shot surfaced. This one belonged to Garrettsville resident Rudy White, who was charged with aggravated burglary involving a gun.
?WORST MISDIAL: Everybody occasionally dials a wrong number. But what if that happens when you’re sexting? A 48-year-old Copley resident found out. According to the police report, he accidentally sent a photo of his private parts to another man’s cellphone. Police said all the victim requested “was for the sender to be notified. Officers called the man and warned him that he could face charges. The man said the picture was meant for someone else and promised it would not happen again.” No word about the size of the charges he could face.
?MOST MORONIC MARKETING MOVE: Just when you thought there could be no worse name for a public organization than “Metro Parks, Serving Summit County,” the Summit County Port Authority changes its name to — take a breath — “the Development Finance Authority of Summit County: An Ohio Port Authority.” Well, that just rolls right off the tongue.
?PURPLE HAZE AWARD: If a warrant were out for your arrest, would you flag down a police cruiser and ask for a lighter? A 31-year-old Mentor man who was shopping in Tallmadge didn’t see anything wrong with that concept and ended up being arrested on the warrant. He also was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. Probably safe to assume he made use of that paraphernalia shortly before deciding to ask a cop for a lighter.
?WORST ALIBI: You’d think the chief of police in a city of 27,000 would be able to come up with a better line of bull. Medina’s Patrick Berarducci was given a four-week suspension for making a sexual hand gesture during a meeting with dispatchers. The city’s law director said Berarducci initially claimed the gesture was not sexual in nature, that he was merely pretending to roll a set of imaginary dice. That’s not even a good try.
?GRAMMY AWARD FOR HEAD-BANGING: Two Akron brothers were arrested in January, accused of beating a man with a guitar. The story struck a chord with a Beacon Journal editor, who opined, “These guys must be high strung.”
?WORST HEIST: Akron police said a thief broke into Julian’s Restaurant on Pioneer Street in Goodyear Heights and “took used cigarettes from the rear porch.” Yes, used cigarettes. Police assembled a special investigative team that included the CIA, FBI, ATF, NCIS and CSI: Miami, but never managed to crack the case.
?BEST COLUMNIST: Modesty forbids.
Messages for Bobby can be left at 330-996-3580 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He would like to express his eternal gratitude to colleagues and friends who contributed Bobby nominations during the year: Kathy Antoniotti, Rick Armon, Mary Beth Breckenridge, Rich Desrosiers, Kim Drezdzon, Larry Pantages, Phil Trexler and Craig Webb. God bless them every one.