John Boston | Don’t Let the City’s Roundtable Ruin Hart Park

John Boston
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Dear 5th District Supervisor Barger: 

Hey Kathryn. Placing digits to keyboard this fine Friday to head off a disaster of Homeric proportions. Recently, my beloved City o’ SClarita drafted a nefarious request for Los Angeles County to turn over to them — lock, stock and smoking bison — William S. Hart Park. 

Seems beneficial. The county saves $12.8 million yearly on Purina Goat Chow while the tireless and annoyingly helpful Friends of Hart Park are incarcerated in one of the SCV’s many under-appreciated and dank youth concentration camps. Hart Park would be under local control. 

Big mistake, Kate. 

Are you aware of the SClarita Human Relations Roundtable? Roundtable (the useless city agency, not the yummy pizza parlor) plans to turn Hart Park überwoke. They’re bent on destroying the legacy of our saintly silent movie star. 

Before the ink dries on the transfer, Roundtable (secret city agency, not the pizza joint) aims to turn this hallowed cowboy ground into the largest homeless shelter in California. Worse? They plan to build a giant, free homeless carwash in the park, causing epic traffic jams. Then, there’d be all those senseless lawsuits falsely claiming the park’s carwash vacuum cleaners were sucking up “valuables” from the floormats of rusted 1975 AMC Pacers. 

It’s a slippery slope. If you allow homeless car washes, next comes taxpayer-funded homeless bed-and-breakfasts. This requires removing all hills from hilly Hart Park as state law mandates homeless encampments must be on level ground as it’s a well-known fact that the homeless — and, our daft president — suffer from vertigo. 

Or was it lumbago? 

I’m going to have to visit Wikipedia and fact-check that. (Oh. Adding “Lumbago” to our band name list. Latin? Salsa? May I have this dance?) 

Like Hell, the road to Hart Park is paved with good intentions. If Mayor Bill “Carmen” Miranda’s Roundtable gets their mitts on the land, they’ll sterilize Hart’s legacy. They’ll edit his silent movies. Guns, fistfights, fallen naughty saloon ladies, people smiling and mouthing “Merry Christmas!” and even horses will be airbrushed out of Hart’s old Westerns. PETA will invade. Hart’s historic film library will be sanitized. No pony riding. No ordering dogs to “fetch.” Knife fights with pouncing mountain lions will now be mitigated by a City Film Heritage Dialogue Committee with pumas being coddled as victims and Hart being labeled the White Male Aggressor. (Cripes. White Male Aggressor! Another great band name!) 

Not even good-old American horsing around will be tolerated.  

Silents Under the Stars will be 17 seconds long. Worse? Laurene Weste will rewrite the silent movie subtitles with PC messages. Like: “Tho Bill appeared to enjoy a beautiful Western sunset, little did he know that his eyeballs were actually pumping out dangerous levels of CO2 into the atmosphere and killing whales, far, far away…” 

There’s a better solution here. 

Sign over Hart Park to me. 

Swear. I’ll take good care of it. Heck. I’ll even make it better. 

You don’t want the city in charge of anything entertainment-oriented. First thing they’ll do is change Bill Hart’s cowboy focus to Sexually Ambivalent Navy Admiral Mime Festivals or Vegan Interpretive Poetry Readings. With me in charge of Hart Park, I’d ensure our cowboy heritage would forever remain sacrosanct. I’d build a saloon. Atop Heritage Junction. Accidentally. Bill’s Fine Beer Saloon won’t be like those pathetic designer yuppie 1% ale klatches on Main Street. I’m talking Fallen Busty Women (another good band name). Bar fights. Faro games. Roulette wheels. Yodeling. Bar fights over yodeling. Fetching shy school marms to patch up pummeled cowboys and chide “… no no no no no!” while applying iodine to dented heads. 

Toward the back of Hart Park, I’d build the Santa Clarita Bigfoot Sanctuary and encourage Sasquatch, or unsightly women with liberal arts degrees, to migrate here. Both could eat the buffalo. We could host elk hunts. And teas every fourth month for the ladies. As a godless California is about to slide into the Pacific six minutes before the arrival of Climate Change, Hart Park could become The Center for Enlightened Vigilantism Studies and bring back traditional Frontier values. 

Two words, Kate. 

Cowboy. Robots. 

We bring back Tom Frew’s old blacksmith shop and crank out Cowboy Robots by the thousands to hunt down undesirables. I have my list. It’s thick. 

With the beauty of eminent domain, we could slowly acquire local properties to add to the Boston/Hart Ranch. You know. Like Downtown Newhall? We yank kids out of schools (as they’re not learning anything anyway), employing them to reforest the SCV. If they loaf, we feed a few as examples to another Hart Park invention of mine — Robot Grizzly Bears. Again — if I may — yet another fabulous punk rock band name. 

I’m comfy where I am. But, in the holy cause of civic duty, I’d sacrifice and move myself and Scared o’ Bears Ranch into the Hart Mansion, just to keep a watchful eye. All I’d ask is what Jim Ventress used to make at the Boys & Girls Club — $3.6 million. Quarterly. 

Oh. By the way. You’re not any relation to Sonny Barger, fabled Oakland Hell’s Angels president, are you? Sister? Mom? Aunt? Ex-wife? 

Didn’t think it would hurt to ask. 

Sonny went to College of the Canyons. Dated COC Empress Dr. Dianne van Damme van Hook, I’m told, during her wild outlaw motorcycle years. 

Please. Don’t hand over Hart Park to the city. They’re in cahoots with Dianne. Soon as Di-Di drives through the gates, she’ll start building another marbled COC extension campus skyscraping eyesore and fill it with 10,000 useless administrators named Karen. 

Well. Whadya know. 

Another great band name — The Karens! 

John Boston is a local writer with a modicum of animal husbandry, brothel and ranch management experience.

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