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By Justin Time

April  1, 2012 (La Mesa) –Back in 1957 when City Hall was dedicated, La Mesa buried a time capsule that was intended to be opened for the city’s centennial in 2012.  But nobody remembered where the time capsule was hidden and the keys were also lost, as ECM has previously reported.

Early this morning,  however, a broken sprinkler line saturated Briarcrest Park, where a groundskeeper discovered a sealed pipe protruding from the mud.  He called La Mesa Police, who feared that the mud-spattered object could be a pipe bomb. 

The  bomb squad was summoned. Officers cordoned off the park and surrounding areas, prepared to detonate the suspicious device.

Fortunately, a bomb squad officer spotted a logo partially obscured by mud.  Upon closer examination, he recognized the City of La Mesa seal and a notice proclaiming “Open for Centennial.” After x-rays confirmed the device contained no explosives, a press conference was called.

Mayor Art Madrid opened the capsule in the presence of City Council members, staff and press.  Inside were old photographs and memorabilia – along with a large bundle of stock certificates.  

Looking over the latter, City Treasurer Eldon “Bud” Vogt gasped, swiftly punching the numbers into his smart phone. 

“Unbelievable,”  he exclaimed.  “1957 was the year Standard & Poors, the S&P 500 index, got started. Our mysterious donor bought up stocks on the original S&P!”

“So what are those old musty stock certificates worth today?” Mayor Madrid asked.

“The original S&P stocks have risen 140-fold. These stocks, valued at $10,000 back in 1957, are now worth $1.4 million!”

Mayor Madrid broke into a grin.  “Our budget crisis is hereby resolved.  Now let’s get ready for the party of the century!”

Happy April Fool’s Day!

To read more of our  April Fool’s Day 2012 special edition stories, visit



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