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Thirty Years Ago
My former colleague, Jonathan Saville, has the town abuzz with his “review” of Shange’s For Colored Girls.

I found both the poetry and the stage production of Colored Girls to be ambitious, adventurous, and artistic. I suppose that makes me “white, male, liberal, and guilt-ridden.” Last time I checked in on Jonathan he was all of that, too — perhaps more on several counts.
LETTERS: “PURPLE PROSE,” Paul Krueger, September 28, 1978

Twenty-Five Years Ago
Our daughters, who are two years old, pick up our phone whenever they feel like it, being bored with their toy telephones: a Princess to match Julie’s personality, and for Jeanne a business model. Those girls love phones as much as their mother does. Jane is panting to get Sprint, though I’ve held her off so far, but I expect in two years the vote will be three-to-one-I-lose. Sometimes I wonder where those Mouseketeers of mine absorb so much commercialism.
“THEY OUGHTA BE IN PICTURES,” Joe Applegate, September 29, 1983

Twenty Years Ago
On Tuesday morning, September 6, 34-year-old San Diegan Dave Clark smeared his body with two pounds of lanolin and ran into the water at Shakespeare Beach in Dover, England. Nine hours and 47 minutes later, when he emerged from the rough sea at Cap Gris Nez, France, the beach was deserted.

Swimming the English Channel doesn’t mean much anymore, “not unless you break a world record” was the advice Clark heard from veteran distance-swimmer Florence Chadwick before he left for England. Chadwick, a veteran of four well-publicized English Channel swims and considered to be the world’s greatest female distance-swimmer, is now a downtown stockbroker with Smith Barney.
CITY LIGHTS: “FROM ENGLAND TO FRANCE,” Sue Garson, September 29, 1988

Fifteen Years Ago
The KUSI News at Ten crew is a cast of strong, some might say florid, personalities. Unlike the sleeker, slicker 11 o’clock broadcasts on KFMB or KGTV, for example, KUSI’s program seems deliberately rough around the edges. The anchors sometimes cackle, they mispronounce words then laugh at their mistakes. The feature reporters sometimes seem in the grip of some unnameable hysteria.
AS SEEN ON TV: “BE IT EVER SO HUMBLE,” Abe Opincar, September 30, 1993

Ten Years Ago
On September 18 — the last day of KOGO talk-show host Roger Hedgecock’s annual vacation — the station filled in for him by inviting Larry Lucchino, CEO and minority owner of the San Diego Padres, to guest-host. So much of the show centered around Proposition C on the November ballot — the controversial proposal to allocate nearly $300 million of public money to build the Padres a baseball-only stadium downtown — that one opponent of the project called the show “a two-and-a-half-hour infomercial for Proposition C.”
CITY LIGHTS: “RIGGED MEDIA,” Mark Gabrish Conlan, October 1, 1998

Five Years Ago
Drop dead. That’s what City of San Diego employees, their retirement-board — and the mayor and city council — are saying to taxpayers, as well as to current retired city workers.

The city may well have to go bankrupt or sell its public land, warns Diann Shipione, a member of the board of administration of the San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System. Many others who have studied the frightening retirement-fund deficits agree.

What very few San Diegans realize is that these egregious retirement benefits are based on a big lie: that city workers have low salaries and thus deserve generous retirement packages. In fact, their salaries are far higher than private-sector salaries. According to the San Diego Association of Governments, the average salary (not including fringes) for all San Diegans in 2001 was $36,240. The average for all local government workers was $38,997.
CITY LIGHTS: “CITY PENSION FUNDS IN RED,” Don Bauder, September 25, 2003

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