Stories for November 1998

Sunday, November 29

Does salt content affect how fast a surfer can surf?

Dear M.A.: Tropical waves are "faster," allowing for smaller, thinner boards and more fun. Up north it's like surfing with the emergency brake stuck on. It's the salt. The spray from northern waves often smells ...

During World War II, were Germans rounded up by Ecuadorian governments and sent to concentration camps in Texas?

Matmail: On vacation in Ecuador, I met an 80-year-old man who claims that during World War II, he and his German parents were rounded up by the Ecuadorian government at the request of the U.S. ...

Thursday, November 26

Giants Prayed For Rain

This cover story has not yet been posted. However, you can download the digital edition to view any story from this issue.

How are objects reflected in a mirror, and how do our eyes focus on the object?

Mat: Here is one that has always bugged me. It seems logical that when I look at something in a mirror, the critical distance my eyes should have to focus is between me and the ...

Point Loma's Bayside Trail is not simply for out-of-town tourists.

The Bayside Trail, sweeping downward from the old lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument, offers an incomparable view of the city of San Diego and its watery environs. Amid the sweet,pungent sage scrub and chaparral vegetation, ...

Wednesday, November 25

Padres! Padres! Padres!

I love baseball. I grew up watching the Yankees suffer through the misery of the '80s -- despite having Mattingly and Winfield and Guidry -- on WPIX Channel 11, listening to Phil Rizzuto exclaim, "Holy ...

Loving Scrutiny

Those unfamiliar with the Anglican Communion's range of belief and practice were puzzled in early August when, on the lawn of Kent University in England, Bishop Emmanuel Chukwuma of Nigeria tried to lay hands on ...

Thursday, November 19

I'm Leaving Now, Mr. Selznick, and I'm Leavi

This cover story has not yet been posted. However, you can download the digital edition to view any story from this issue.

Why are there so many abandoned homes along the beach of Baja?

Dear Matt: We've been driving around in Baja lately and wondered how come there are so many empty shell houses, most of them with no roofs, some with rebar sticking out the top of the ...

Why do people take the second or third copy off a pile of Readers?

Dear Mr. Answerer-of-All-That's-Weird: Why do people take the second or third copy off a pile of Readers? -- Crazy Cats of Clairemont I thought everybody knew. That's where all the good stuff is. The top ...

How are products able to get away with a label that says 99.9% fat free when there is more than .1% fat?

To: Matmail@aol.com: There are lots of packaged foods out there with a big splash on the front saying "99% FAT FREE." On the back it says, for example, total fat 1 gram, which equals 2% ...

Why is the color yellow associated with cowardice?

O Matt: Today I was watching Gunsmoke, and one cowboy called another "yellow," alluding to cowardice. Why "yellow"? Is this some sort of dis against Asians, or maybe people with liver disease? -- Jaundiced Joe ...

Hike to Anza-Borrego's Calcite Mine, where optical-grade calcite crystals were extracted during World War II

Thousands of years of cutting and polishing by water and wind erosion have produced the chaotic rock formations and slotlike ravines you'll discover in Anza-Borrego's Calcite Mine area. During World War II, this was an ...

The End of Privacy?

In 20 years, are you likely to meet yourself? Could someone clone another you from a Kleenex you dropped? Will your insurance premium depend on your DNA test results? Will a federal DNA data bank ...

Deal Diva

Lisa Whitney's cerulean-blue Jaguar glides through the streets of La Jolla at 8:15 a.m. Its driver is bound for a "pitching session" with the La Jolla Real Estate Brokers Association. She is dressed in a ...

Thursday, November 12

Mindy's Heart

This cover story has not yet been posted. However, you can download the digital edition to view any story from this issue.

We Are in Business

If you like time travel but don't own a working time machine, try an automobile ride to the Viejas Casino and Turf Club. Travel east on I-8, past El Cajon, climb the grade to Alpine, ...

Draw Me a Picture Of Your Pain

Marie can't really remember when it began. Her memory is hazy about the earliest days of her hospitalization. She only only knows that at some point, one of the perpetually smiling volunteers gave her white ...

Wednesday, November 11

Did Houdini contact his wife after he died?

Matthew Alice: Every year...at HALLOWEEN...media reports that the famed magician HOUDINI did not contact his wife AFTER he died. Not true!! This letter is on page 75 of Nothing So Strange -- the biography of ...

Why are flight attendants required to be able to swim 90 feet?

Dear Matt: Maybe you can help me ease my curiosity and assuage the paranoia that accompanied my thoughts after reading a job vacancy requirement. Recently Alaska Airlines advertised vacancies for the position of flight attendant. ...

Tuesday, November 10

Who named the Emmy, Grammy, Tony, etc.? Who was Hendrix Pond named after?

Dear Matthew Alice: Who is the Emmy named after? And the Tony? The Grammy? Who decreed that all these major awards have to end in y? What about the Pulitzer Prize? When will you be ...

Thursday, November 5

Three Bullets and Nine Years Later: Betty Br

This cover story has not yet been posted. However, you can download the digital edition to view any story from this issue.

Hike to the summit of North Fortuna Mountain in Mission Trails Regional Park.

Fortuna Mountain, in East County's Mission Trails Regional Park, presides over a great deal of as yet undeveloped territory. Peering north and northeast from Fortuna's 1291-foot summit, you can see thousands of acres of empty, ...

Top Brass vs. Low Church

This is the joke among the Navy's evangelical chaplains. "Question: What do you have to do to get promoted in the U.S. Navy? "Answer: If you're a Roman Catholic, you've got to be able to ...

Gone to Hell Fast

'Downtown, Open Sunday, 2-5, 3 story, 3 fireplaces, Old Mansion, needs restoration, 3450 sf house. $249,000." -- ad in the San Diego Union-Tribune. "Boy, if these walls could talk." -- woman at open house. I ...

Scandalous Diego

When word leaked out two weeks ago that ex-Charger Tony Martin was under investigation for money laundering on behalf of a Miami-area friend, it wasn't the first time that the Atlanta Falcons' wide receiver's financial ...

Wednesday, November 4

Are dogs able to see or recognize themselves in photos?

Dear Matt: The other night when my family and I pondered this question I had a "Eureka." I realized only one guy (and a few elves) would be able to sort this one out. Our ...

Monday, November 2

Good prospects await observers of 1998's Leonid meteor shower.

On a mid-November night in 1833, millions of Americans awoke to strange flashes of light. Peering outside, they discovered the night sky ablaze with meteors, pouring from the constellation of Leo at a rate of ...

Join our
newsletter list

Enter to win $25 at Broken Yolk Cafe

Each newsletter subscription
means another chance to win!

Close