Wow. The Cafe is buzzing. It’s great to be hosting again, by the way. Would anyone like more coffee? I’m serving only decaf today! How about a lighter subject while I sort out your thoughts about fire protection?  Since the end of the year is typically a time for pundits to forecast the future, I’ll take a shot. But, because there’s no such thing as a “sure thing” in government, it’s probably wiser to predict what won’t happen than what will. Looking into my crystal ball… 

Ten Things That Will NEVER Happen in 2008

1. City of San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders takes “managed competition” to a whole new level by outsourcing city government in its entirety to the county of San Diego, which, given our own success with strategic outsourcing, accepts numerous bids for the task and awards the contract to a start-up located in Bombay, India. Citizens praise the high degree of friendliness from phone operators.  

2. Congressman Bob Filner is recognized by the San Diego Mediation Center as Mediator of the Year.

3. San Diego’s Indian gaming tribes join forces to launch the “World Series of Canasta” tournament, hosted by Matt Vasgersian to air nightly on KPBS television. San Diego seniors can’t get enough of the “Canastapalooza” craze or its reigning champion Ian Trowbridge. The tribes donate an astounding portion of the show’s proceeds to the non-profit voiceofsandiego.org website.  

4. Four words: Greg Cox. Bar fight. 

5. LaDanian Tomlinson arrives at Qualcomm Stadium 3.7 seconds late on game day after stopping to help a line of helpless baby ducks cross busy Friars Road. Unaccustomed to any mistake by the picture perfect and greatest running back of all time, Chargers fans are stunned by Tomlinson’s tardiness. A series of scathing Union-Tribune editorials slam Tomlinson for his “utter disregard for time management.” Tomlinson, being Tomlinson, overnight bakes and delivers apple pies to every man, woman and child in the region, including Mike Aguirre.     

6. New concerns over wind flow and automotive traffic patterns prompt the Federal Aviation Administration to declare the notorious Sunroad building 14 feet too wide.

7. After singing a truly moving rendition of America the Beautiful at the 2008 Monster Truck Mash at the Del Mar Fairgounds, Pam Slater-Price is caught by a KFMB television camera wearing one of those hats with the dual beer holders and shouting “Sunday, Sunday, Sunday.” The footage is posted on YouTube and is voted the most highly rated video of the day. She becomes an overnight sensation in Vienna, Austria.

8. Chargers General Manager A. J. Smith reveals that his break up with former Chargers Coach Marty Schottenhiemer was actually the result of an ongoing dispute over who had the better fantasy football team.

9.  Santee mayor Randy Voepel drops his objections to the re-designed Las Colinas Detention Facility in the city of Santee on the condition that he, instead of Sheriff Bill Kolender, gets to operate it. Voepel’s innovative “Punitive Pedal Power Plant” features hundreds of clean, green energy turbines attached to stationary exercise bikes. The project eliminates the need for both the proposed power plant at Miramar and San Diego Gas and Electric’s Sunrise Powerlink. It fights global warming and obesity. Voepel is praised by both the ACLU and the Sierra Club. 

10.  Possessing a gifted and unmatched vocal ability but not the Generation Y age to go with it, County Chief Administrative Officer Walt Ekard obtains a fake I.D. so that he can compete on the next season of American Idol.

How about you? What do you think will or won’t happen in the year ahead?

— DIANNE JACOB

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