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You Sing About the Zamboni, You Could Be Treading on Some Thin Ice

A Wall Street Journal article on the newest genre in music -- hockey rock -- mentioned the song, “Zamboni Driving Maniac,” which goes like this:

Before and after and in between,

One man’s mission, the ice he’ll clean.

He’s fueled by hockey, fueled by beer.

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Run you down if you get near.

The cheery song, by Two Man Advantage, a New York band, is not a hit with the Zamboni Co. of Paramount, the city of birth for the ice-resurfacing machine.

“We’re taking a look at that with our trademark attorney,” said Paula Jensen, a spokeswoman for the company, which also markets Zamboni memorabilia. Part of the company’s concern, Jensen said, is whether the song “implies an unsafe activity.”

Another hockey rock group, the Zambonis, is licensed by the company but doesn’t celebrate beer-fueled drivers of the rinks.

The Z factor: Perhaps because the Zamboni is so slow-moving as it rumbles about during hockey intermissions, the machine inspires jokes about its lethal potential.

The company ignored a little-noticed detective novel by David Katzman with the title “Death by Zamboni.”

The novel never mentioned the machine in the story.

And the company embraced the gentler humor of Charles Schulz’s “Peanuts” comic strips, one of which portrayed Snoopy questioning how much his hockey coach valued him.

“He told me to stand in front of the Zamboni,” the depressed hound said.

Traveler’s advisory: With vacation time approaching, it’s time to confuse you with some foreign traffic signs (see photos).

Three were taken in London by Jay Berman of Manhattan Beach and seem to warn of a striped animal not usually found in the city; an area unsuitable for Laker coach Phil Jackson; and a boomerang area.

Actually, the zebra sign refers to an elevated pedestrian crossing; the coaches’ sign refers to buses; and the “adverse camber” -- well, Berman isn’t quite sure what the heck that is.

Closer to home: Elsa Jones of Chino Hills, meanwhile, snapped a sign in Jamaica that refers to speed bumps and not to a cop snoozing on the job. (see photo).

Mondegreen of the Day: Anne Olmstead of La Crescenta recalls the time a niece of hers “came home from Sunday school and asked her mother who did God’s washing. That day they had sung a song about ‘bringing in the sheets.’ ”

It turned out to be the harvest hymn, “Bringing In the Sheaves.”

miscelLAny: “As a daily Palisades walker and observer of local motorists and their driving habits, as they relate to traffic-control signs,” David Russell wrote in the Palisadian-Post, “I would say that Pacific Palisades has more nonstops than the airlines that fly into LAX.”

A fleet of sleeping policemen might help.

Steve Harvey’s e-mail address is steve.harvey@latimes.com.


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