Where does all the jewelry go?

Diamonds, rubies and pearls, oh my!:

I was wondering if you could find out what happens to gems and
jewelry that goes down the drain. Is there a filter at the end or
are city workers getting all these diamonds and rubies and
Diamonds, rubies and pearls, oh my!: “I was wondering if you could find out what happens to gems and jewelry that goes down the drain. Is there a filter at the end or are city workers getting all these diamonds and rubies and pearls? Thanks.”

“Years ago that happened to a lady who lost a ring,” City Administrator Jay Baksa told the Red Phone. “She contacted the city and in what would be incredible odds, one of our people found it in a manhole. Everyone lived happily ever after. But the odds of that happening are incredible.”

Baksa explained that the city uses an industrial vacuum to occasionally clean out the sewers, so lost items can end up being pushed further down the line or could end up at the sewer plant, in theory.

But before you go jumping in a sewer, it might be best to check out the S-shaped pipe – also known as a trap – below your sink. That’s the most likely place to find that lost jewelry.

Generous donations: “This is overdue. This is from your article on Thursday, Jan. 13. I’d like to commend the four McCormack sisters, Camille, Carla, Celia and Christine, for their generous donation to the new arts center in Gilroy. I’d also like to commend their parents, Dr. J.G. McCormack and the late Mrs. McCormack. That’s what you call a gift from the heart. The parents planted that little seed in them and they took off with it and I commend them for their love of arts. Hopefully someday we’ll bring the Nutcracker, maybe a mini version of it, into Gilroy. Thanks again.”

Kudos to everyone who has generously donated to the Gilroy Center for the Arts Endowment Fund. And the Red Phone imagines Camille, who has attended the Nutcracker for 44 consecutive years in San Francisco, also looks forward to a version in Gilroy.

Green means what?: “Hi Red Phone. I’m driving around town and I’m seeing these green lights on what look like utility boxes and I’ve never seen them there before. I’ve been seeing them on boxes that are at ground level. I’m wondering what that’s for. Is it just to show people if it’s working or not? Thanks Red Phone.”

The Red Phone earned its pay with this question, caller. It got on the trail … and got lost several times. Though it had difficulty finding someone who knew exactly what those odd boxes and lights are, it finally found an answer with Gilroy’s own Public Information Officer Joe Kline.

“The boxes are actually power supply units for the Charter Communications cable TV system,” he said, and added, “The green light indicates that the box is in the normal operating mode. A red light indicates that the unit is in stand-by mode.”

So there you go. Another mystery solved.

Join in fight against blight: “This is regarding the articles about blight in Gilroy. I would like to add my response to this. Although I was really encouraged to see that readers are concerned about the blight problem, to date I’m discouraged by the lack of action by the city of Gilroy. My wife and I were instrumental in the implementation of the blight ordinance and immediately after it was implemented wrote a letter to Gilroy requesting they do something about the blight problem on Ronan Avenue. … Little has been done. It’s especially surprising because the Dispatch, on three occasions, has identified and written articles on the blight problem on Ronan. If everyone is as concerned as I am and is waiting for the city to do something on the problem, the wait may be a while. What I suggest we do is start organizing ourselves and attend some city council meetings. If anyone is interested, please send me a letter, providing me with your name and phone number and I will contact you. Write to: Blight Concern, 124-H Blossom Hill Road, Box 1524, San Jose, CA 95123. I would appreciate it if this could get in one of your articles and hopefully I will get some calls and we can start getting something done. Thank you very much.”

Sure thing, caller. Let’s hope concerned Dispatch readers take note and contact you.