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Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

Hidden Cash coming to Fresno

So you know Hidden Cash, the mysterious Twitter account user who has been hiding cash in cities around the world and inspiring frenzied displays of greed fun? Well, Hidden Cash is coming to Fresno. The millionaire real estate investor who is apparently behind Hidden Cash said this on Twitter this morning:

So far, he has left stacks of bills — often $50 and $100  – hidden inside plastic Angry Birds and other creative holders, while giving out clues to the location via the Hidden Cash Twitter and Facebook account. He also hinted at a big holiday weekend surprise this morning, but didn’t say where.

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A new song from Oklahoma band Broncho … also “Girls” season 3.

So, there is this show on HBO called “Girls” that people seem like. I know this because of every third Tweet I read this morning. Also, this story. The season-three premiere was last night. I really don’t know anything about “Girls,” so I can’t tell you that you should get into it or whatever. I DO know that last night’s episode featured a new song from Oklahoma retro-punk band Broncho. You should definitely get into them.

Photo a day: The Big Fresno Fair (Day 1, rides)

The Big Fresno Fair opened this morning, and as of this afternoon the rides started to whirl. So if you’re heading out to the fair after work, have some fun with our photo a day challenge. Just snap a photo of today’s “rides” theme and share the photo with the #beebigfairfresno hashtag. Here’s one shot by Bee photographer Craig Kohlrus shared today:

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Find daily themes and instructions on the jump:

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Fres-Know: Trampled by Wyoming

BIG STATES VS. SMALL: Fascinating, must-read piece about the constitutional clout small states have in the U.S. Senate, which some call the least democratic legislative chamber in any developed nation. Prime example: Fresno has about the same number of people as Wyoming but receives far less from the federal government. [New York Times]

JITTERY BABY: Famous former Beehiver-turned-national-sports-blogger sadly deals with bad Yo Gabba Gabba trip. [Twitter]

SHOWDOWN AT THE ORANGE COVE CORRAL: Local politics doesn’t get nastier, John Ellis writes. You can turn his Page A1 story into a drinking game: Take a swig every time Mayor Victor Lopez refers to himself in the 3rd person. [Bee]

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Our 11 favorite tweets about The Black Keys concert

Yeah, I might have just hit play on “Everlasting Light” again. What of it? If you’re still thinking about Monday night’s Black Keys concert too, then consider this your Twitter time capsule. Here are our 11 favorite tweets — funny, true, odd or just plain amusing — about last night’s concert:

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Our 10 favorite tweets about this Conan/Fresno situation

So, that whole thing about Conan’s bobblehead really took off yesterday, huh? First there was the video, then the Facebook page, then the mayor’s letter to Conan. Needless to say, there was a lot of chatter about this. So we collected some of our favorite tweets — either funny, weird or amusing.

Warning: One has a swear word.

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107 amusing tweets about the weather in Fresno today

So, I was going to try to gather 107 tweets in honor of today’s (so far) high of 107, but then 97 of ‘em were some version of “OMG! Fresno why are you so hot? F*** you!” We’re left with 10 amusing tweets about today’s weather.

Feel free to add any funny/amusing/sad ones that you see in the comments.

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Let the people of Pinedale swim!

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A front-page story in today’s Bee by reporter Ezra Romero cast an eye on the unused community pool in Pinedale, which hasn’t been able to open in three years and, at press time, wouldn’t be opening any time soon because of city budget woes.

A couple choice quotes from the story:

“It’s so hot, and now we have to go swimming in the river,” said 11-year-old Isaac Liscano, who lives down the street from the pool. “The pool was the best thing for us.”

“It’s a sign of the economic condition that some of the city’s recreational services have been cut back,” said Andreas Borgeas, whose Fresno City Council district includes Pinedale.

The only way the pool could open, city officials said, was if $7,300 in donations were collected. So this morning, on a day that’s forecast to possibly reach 110 degrees, The Bee’s opinion page editor Jim Boren took to Twitter to start the campaign.

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Announcing: The Great Fresno Tweetup 4

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Once again, The Beehive and the Fresno Grizzlies are happy to announce the annual convergence of the Fresno Twittersphere that we’ve dubbed The Great Fresno Tweetup.

It’s happening May 3 (that’s two weeks from today) at the Grizzlies game. The tweetup returns to the centerfield pool this year, which seemed to be a big hit two years ago. Expect the usual tweetup good time — a special $5 ticket with our very own $1 beer station (it’s Tecate Thristdays, ya know?), prizes and more.

Wanna go? If so RSVP to @fresnogrizzlies on Twitter. While you’re at it, be sure you’re following @fresnobeehive and @fresnobee too.

Watch our Twitter accounts for some pre-Tweetup fun — like a chance to throw out the first pitch. Oh, and be sure to tag all your Tweetup-related chatter with #GreatFresnoTweetup.

Super Bowl XLVI all a game of numbers

voice.JPGMonday is all about numbers when it comes to the Super Bowl. The big news is always how many people watched and the A.C. Nielsen Company’s reporting an estimated 111.3 million people watched the New York Giants beat the New England Patriots. That’s up a fraction from last year when 111 million watched Green Bay top Pittsburgh.

NBC’s touting the ratings numbers for the second season premiere of “The Voice” that followed the Super Bowl telecast. “The Voice” averaged a 16.3 rating in adults 18-49 and 37.6 million viewers overall. That’s the highest 18-49 rating since ABC’s post-Super Bowl telecast of “Grey’s Anatomy” in February 2006.

“The Voice” was NBC’s highest-rated post-Super Bowl telecast in adults 18-49 in 14 years, since “3rd Rock from the Sun” in 1998 (17.1 rating), and in total viewers, it was tops for the network since the “Friends” special Super Bowl telecast in 1996 (52.9 million). The numbers are way up from last year as “The Voice” was up 40% in total viewers over last year’s post-Super Bowl telecast of “Glee.”

Sports talk radio is filled with numbers discussions in regards to Eli Manning and Tom Brady. The argument is Manning is a better quarterback because he’s 2-0 in Super Bowls while Brady is 3-2. Three is bigger than two but two is larger than zero. Both have two Super Bowl MVP honors.

Twitter reports there were 12,233 tweets per second late in the game.

One of the oddest numbers discussions comes from PornHub.com. It reports Massachusetts natives accounted for a 22% spike at 11 p.m. and a 33% spike at midnight following the game telecast on the East Coast while New York’s numbers only increased 16% and 32%. It looks like winning is its own reward.

R.I.P. Imad Naffa, local titan of Twitter

Imad Naffa — a local businessman who gained an international following on Twitter in recent years — passed away unexpectedly earlier this week at age 49.

Naffa, a civil engineer, had amassed more than 50,000 Twitter followers, making him one of the most-followed people in Fresno. Recently, he had been asked to speak overseas about his social media following, which connected him with like-minded engineers and social media enthusiasts around the world. You can read more about Naffa and plans for his funeral, scheduled for this weekend, in his Bee obituary:

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In an odd twist: Naffa’s Twitter account — @imadnaffa — is still active, as some of his Tweets are automated.

Tulare guy vying to be MTV’s first ‘TJ’

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UPDATE: MTV announced the five finalists who will compete for its “TJ” position in the Aug. 8 finale in NY — and Iniquez made the cut. So keep watching his blog and following him on Twitter.

ORIGINAL POST, 7/19: Tulare dude Jose Iniguez is the running to become MTV’s first social media personality. He’s one of 20 in MTV’s TJ contest (we think that’s Twitter jockey).

If he wins, Iniguez, who is 23 and a UCLA grad, would win a one-year contract with MTV, a $100K salary and tons of access to the celebs and events. Currently, Iniguez is in ninth place as the competition heads into its final week.

Since it’s crunch time and he could use the boost, here are a number of ways you can help him out:

  • Follow him on Twitter. Every person helps.
  • Check out his blog, where he’s posting his responses to MTV’s various challenges.
  • Vote for him on Facebook. (It’s quick and easy, you just have to like an American Express page first)

The winner will be named in an Aug. 8 live finale, which will be televised on MTV. The top five finalists will participate in the finale. You have a chance to see Iniguez in person before that though.

The Fresno Grizzlies and The Beehive have selected Iniguez to throw out the first pitch at The Great Fresno Tweetup 2 on Thursday at Chukchansi Park — it being a Twitter event and all, and him being a possible Twitter host for MTV, it seemed like a good fit.

My favorite thing on the Internet right now

… Is the @BPGlobalPR Twitter account. It’s skewering BP’s efforts in cleaning up the Louisiana oil spill. It’s a serious topic, sure, that some people might not enjoy someone making light of. But the parody here is dead on. And apparently, the real BP isn’t really doing anything to stop the fake account, which has 50,000 more followers than the real BP account. Here are a few of my faves:

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Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild: The Update

We’re just a few days away from Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild, our special after-hours party with Chaffee Zoo on Saturday. The RSVP list is growing and the chatter on Twitter is getting louder and louder. There’s still time to RSVP for the event and its special $5 ticket price. So hop on Twitter, follow Chaffee Zoo (@fresnozoo) and The Beehive (@fresnobeehive), and send us your RSVP.

Now here are some recent developments for the event, including a new band that’s been added and details on the afterparty.

THE AFTERPARTY
We’re having the official Tweetup afterparty at Palomino’s in the Tower District, where DJ Don D will be spinning. So if you’re schedule prohibits you from joining us at the zoo, there’s always the afterparty. It’s where Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild gets even wilder.

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Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild: The Music

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With our Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild with Chaffee Zoo right around the corner — it’s April 24, aka next Saturday — it’s about time we announce the local musicians who you’ll see playing that night.

Not only will it be a great opportunity to get into an exclusive evening event at the zoo and mingle with Fresno’s Twitter community — but you’ll hear some great local music too.

We’ll have three stations for music, with two artists at each. We’re still waiting to confirm one last band, but here’s 5/6 of the lineup.

All the music will be acoustic. Remember: Tickets are discounted to $5, and kids 10 and under are free. The event runs 5-8 p.m. We’ll have games, prizes and beer and food available for purchase. Be sure to follow and RSVP to @fresnobeehive and @fresnozoo. Use the #wildfresno hashtag when you talk about the Tweetup.

Twitter introduces paid tweets

Twitter is a huge deal, no question about it, but some in the tech industry still wonder: Will it pay off? The company took a step toward answering that question today by announcing it will introduce advertising by allowing companies to pay to have their messages show up first in searches on its site. According to the AP story on fresnobee.com:

These tweets are to be “called out” as ads on top of search results on Twitter, much as sponsors can pay for listings atop rankings on search engines such as Google, Microsoft’s Bing and Yahoo. That means Twitter users would see the new ads when they search broadly for topics being tweeted about.

However, many users connect with the service not through such searches or even visits to the site. Rather, scores of outside programmers have written mobile and desktop software that can access the feeds of Twitter messages that users get from people they are “following” on the site. Twitter said it might take the Promoted Tweets service further and make them also show up on those feeds.

Is this a small price to pay for the privilege of Twitter? Or will it become a major annoyance?

Fresno joins the Twestival cause

Hundreds of cities around the world will participate in Twestival on March 25 — and Fresno will be of them. Twestival is a Twitter-fueled global effort to raise money to help educate poor children around the world.

Fresno’s Twestival will be a celebration of local music, held at Tokyo Garden. Patrick Contreras, Abigail Nolte, DJ Bradley, Ms. Soulflower and DJ Revol are performing at the event, which begins at 9 p.m.

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Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild

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The Beehive and Chaffee Zoo are partnering for Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild. It’s a chance for local Twitter users to meet and mingle inside the zoo, at a discounted, after-hours event. It’s our sequel to last summer’s Great Fresno Tweetup.

This event is Saturday, April 24, from 5-8 p.m. Chaffee Zoo will be closed to the public, so it’s an exclusive event for local Twitter users. Tickets will cost $5, and kids 10 and younger are free with their parent(s).

There will be food, drinks, games and live music — all of which you can expect more details right here on The Beehive as the event gets closer.

A few notes on how the Tweetup will work:

  • You MUST message either Chaffee Zoo (@fresnozoo) or The Beehive (@fresnobeehive) on Twitter to get on the list for $5 tickets.
  • You’ll pick up your tickets along with a nametag at the will-call table before the event.
  • The Zoo says all its usual animals will be out during the Tweetup. We’ve also got a few fun things scheduled — like a Twitpic Scavenger Hunt.
  • Mark any and all Tweets about the event with the hashtag #wildfresno. And follow that hashtag for all the chatter about Fresno Tweetup Goes Wild.
  • If you’re not Twitter, you’ve got plenty of time to join and get into the swing of things. Be sure to follow @fresnobeehive and @fresnozoo first thing.

Talking points: Are you dreading your summer PG&E bills?

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PREPARE FOR AIR-CONDITIONER ARMAGEDDON: One of the most-discussed topics being bandied about The Bee’s site this week is Fresno getting dissed by our local monolithic for-profit energy provider. The conversation got kick-started by Bee reader George L. Strasser, who wrote a “Valley Voices” column Jan. 23 for the Opinion section:

As of this January, it costs $241.93 to use 1,000 kilowatt hours a month in Fresno. That much juice costs $121 in Las Vegas, $111.83 in Phoenix, and only $83 in Tucson. Are you surprised?

Bee reporter Tim Sheehan weighed in Monday with a front-page news story:

Contributing to the uproar are concerns over new-fangled meters that measure a home’s power use. The arrival of SmartMeters in the Valley last summer and fall coincided with sticker shock as many customers saw their utility bills jump. For example, Fresno resident Leo Margosian said the September bill for his condo was nearly four times higher than it was a year earlier.

One reader commented:

I have a hard time understanding why my PG&E bill was $375 last month. My heater was set to a mere 63 degrees and I am freezing in my own home. My gas usage was extremely low and nothing else has changed in the last 2 months of usage. I didn’t even put christmas lights on my house this year.

More talking points (ACLU vs. alleged anti-gay professor at Fresno City College, the demise of blogging, a really big Super Bowl mistake) after the jump.

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Apple introduces its iPad; the Internet LOLs

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As you’ve probably heard by now, Apple released its latest shiny, new, expensive thing today — the iPad.

I didn’t watch every second of the coverage, but I saw enough to know that it’s not as compact as my iPhone (which is why everybody needs it), it’s more portable than a MacBook Pro (which is why why everybody wants it) and it’s way more Apple-ish than Amazon’s Kindle (which is why everybody must have it*).

As per usual when Apple holds a big event, the Internet went wild. The tech bloggers started dissecting it every which way. Twitter got backed up.

One interesting thing did happen — the name was almost universally panned. On Twitter, it incited quite the array of clever quips. Jezebel has a good list of some of the best stuff from around the Internet. Locally, a bunch of people in my Twitter stream made my chuckle Some of them are below, starting with our very own Heather. Beehive High-Fivesâ„¢ to all included.

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