City Council, Herb J. Fenton Meet To Discuss Ways To Control Unchecked Growth Of Herb J. Fenton

Top Headlines

Recent News

Journeyman Fan Joins Sixth NFL Team In 5 Years

HELENA, MT—Continuing his lengthy trek around the league, sources confirmed Friday that 36-year-old journeyman fan Brian Ferretti has joined the Arizona Cardinals, his sixth team in the past five years.

Is The Nation Ready For The Next Katrina?

Friday marks the 10-year anniversary of when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, and many commentators have argued that not enough has been done over the past decade to address infrastructure and emergency response issues that could put coastal cities nationwide, including New Orleans, at risk of a catastrophe on a similar scale. Is the nation prepared for another Katrina?

Department Of Labor Study Confirms Your Job Most Demanding

‘None Of Your Friends Understand How Hard It Is,’ Report Reads

WASHINGTON—Noting that the level of mental strain associated with the profession was far and away the highest recorded, a federal study on workplace conditions and occupational stress released Thursday has confirmed that your job is the most demanding career in the entire nation, and that none of your friends or family fully understand how hard it is.

Neighborhood Starting To Get Too Safe For Family To Afford

CHICAGO—Explaining that the sense of unease she felt walking to and from her home had declined markedly over the years, Humboldt Park resident Kirsten Healy expressed her disappointment to reporters Thursday that her neighborhood was becoming too safe for her family to afford.
End Of Section
  • More News
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage

Originality

Productivity

City Council, Herb J. Fenton Meet To Discuss Ways To Control Unchecked Growth Of Herb J. Fenton

MILPITAS, CA—Citing space considerations, the need for a more forward-looking acquisition plan and community concern over severe electrical-outlet overcrowding, Milpitas city officials met with area resident Herb J. Fenton Monday to develop a sensible long-term plan for the controlled future growth of Herb J. Fenton.

Milpitas, CA, resident Herb J. Fenton, seen here in front of his expanding, consumer-goods-filled home. City officials met with Fenton Monday in an effort to develop long-term solutions to the growing problem of Fenton sprawl.

"The issue of 'Fenton sprawl' is the most serious long-term civic planning challenge facing Milpitas," said Bonnie Walker, president of the "Fenton 2000" planning committee. "Fenton's unregulated consumption, which in the past month alone has included a new motorcycle, minivan, stereo system, gas grill and patio set, puts him on a growth trajectory seven times that of the average U.S. consumer. Project that to the year 2010, and you begin to see the potential for disaster."

Throughout the five-hour, closed-door meeting, council members expressed a willingness to compromise with Fenton, though they sharply criticized him for what they termed "a long history of reckless, unchecked growth."

Among Fenton's more questionable moves: the recent purchase of a small digital satellite dish to augment the large dish already in place; last month's expansion and renovation of his living room to make room for a new billiard table; and a projected May '98 in-ground swimming pool installation.

Council members were particularly critical of Fenton's controversial recent purchase of an oversized trailer, a move he staunchly defended.

"I realize that an 18-foot trailer will greatly increase the density of my already overtaxed one-acre lot," Fenton said. "But let's be honest: My snowmobile and fishing boat aren't much good without a trailer to tow them. Growth, in this case, was absolutely unavoidable. Clearly, with their opposition to my new trailer, city council members are trying to curb my purchases not just of luxuries but of necessities, as well."

Council members also raised a number of serious Fenton-related storage issues, primarily the question of where he plans to put his new riding mower. "As we all know, Mr. Fenton's tool shed is already full," Walker said. "And while the construction of a second tool shed to store the mower would be helpful, in the long run such a structure would only serve to aggravate the problem of unregulated Fentonian expansion."

Fenton said that now that his three children are all in their teens, the proposed second shed could be built on land currently occupied by the youths' childhood swingset. Such a plan, however, would require the approval of Fenton's wife Cheryl, who is believed to strongly oppose the plan because of the swingset's status as a family historical site.

While Monday's meeting did not result in a comprehensive, workable Fenton containment plan, council members did conclude that a good deal of Fenton sprawl could be eliminated through consolidation.

"Instead of having a 27-inch television in every single room of the house, perhaps Mr. Fenton could opt for 32-inch televisions, but only in the living room, kitchen, master bedroom and breakfast nook," Walker said. "It's a quality-of-life issue. Bigger TVs with more channels, not more TVs. More heads on the VCR, not more VCRs. Only taping very special episodes of McMillan And Wife, not every episode. Simplify."

Fenton responded that such suggestions, while well-meaning, are unrealistic. "Should I also stop buying the Gotham City-sized Tostitos corn chips? Should I stop buying 72-can packs of Pepsi? What will I put in my refrigerators then?" he said.

Making a sole concession to the council, Fenton grudgingly agreed to hold a garage and rummage sale later this fall. "I guess I could sell off a few things. We don't use the trampoline much anymore, and I'll probably never get around to fixing up my old riding mower now that I've got the new Toro," he said. "But no way I'm selling those golf clubs—I still have to learn to play golf someday."