Stories for June 2009

Tuesday, June 30

Crystal Cove, Newport Beach

Ever longed to step back in time? The Crystal Cove State Park Historic District, originally a seaside colony in the 1930s, offers a vintage getaway located on the ocean side of Pacific Coast Highway in ...

Carnival in the Plaka, Athens

Who knew that it snows in Athens? On my way to the island of Paros to teach painting at an art school, I stayed in the Plaka, a historic district near the Acropolis of Athens, ...

Home of Twilight: Forks, Washington

Whether you are hiking the stunning Olympic rainforest or hunting down vampires, Forks is a popular place to be. In the summer of 2008, I went on a road trip to Forks. After reading the ...

Monday, June 29

Surrounded

Just before 1:00 p.m on June 29, an altercation between two people at 746 Broadway (above the Church of Steel tattoo shop) resulted in police officers surrounding the building. Because a gun was involved, police ...

Driving on Highway 395, near Mono Lake

A summer morning drive on Highway 395 offers a breathtaking view of the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. The endless array of mountains, trees, lakes and geological wonders on the way to Lake Tahoe is ...

Pacific Coast Highway, California: An Undertaking

The Maserati convertible was not quite ready for the road, I felt, in spite of my best efforts (having taken the carburetor off – twice – to rebuild, etc.). With no other options, I caught ...

June 25 Crossword Contenders

Flo Abena, Rancho Penasquitos, 24. Happy 233rd Birthday USA! Mary Arana, Encinitas, 24. Shannon Barry, Pine Valley, 24. I'll start to count backwards, and when I am through... Olga Betteridge, Ocean Beach, 24. I am ...

June 25 Sudoku Contenders

EVIL Daniel Aames, Carmel Valley, 9. How many ways to fill in a blank 9x9 grid? Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 9. Michael Jackson is poetry in action! RIP Jacko! Jean Bradley, Spring Valley, 9. Much ...

Neighborly Noises

Two weeks after I’d moved in, one of my new neighbors, Gris Glums, asked how I liked living here. “Noise bother you yet?” I said it hadn’t, probably because I was pounding nails for pictures, ...

Smoking Trolley

At approximately 9.15 a.m. on Saturday, June 27, as an M.T.S. Blue Line trolley en route to Old Town arrived at the Civic Centre stop, commuters onboard were forced to evacuate the train as smoke ...

Friday, June 26

Fans Staying Away from Away at the Park

On Wednesday evening, June 24, The San Diego Padres found themselves deadlocked in a 3-3 tie with the Seattle Mariners through the top of the eighth inning. Although it was a close game, there were ...

Cruisin' in the Caribbean

Our seven-day Caribbean cruise started out in Miami on a hot summer day in 2006. Standing near the southernmost tip of the country, you can gaze toward the horizon across the Florida Keys. With a ...

Thursday, June 25

Butt Out

For Solana Beach city councilmember Lesa Heebner, cigarette smokers should be confined to their houses with their doors and windows shut tight when they spark up. “My father died from smoking,” said Heebner during the ...

Poachers Get Shellfish

For many San Diegans, the La Jolla Underwater Park is a tranquil place to observe marine life in its natural environment. Poachers, however, seem to view the state-protected marine conservation area as their own personal ...

Seen a Dream Walking

You should have been at the barbecue held in Little Italy last Sunday. Picture it: moving up the street toward the house in a black jumpsuit was a blonde vision with perfect complexion and a ...

Transformer Taken Down by Parrot

Residents in southern Ocean Beach began Wednesday, June 24, without power. At about 8:30 a.m. one of the many parrots inhabiting O.B. landed on a transformer in the alley between Santa Cruz Avenue and Del ...

Wednesday, June 24

If We Didn't Advertise We'd Go Broke Treating the Poor

Healthcare is like burgers — sell, sell, sell.

Many of us watched the Chargers’ season-ending run this past winter and, amid the cheers and groans, saw a 30-second TV ad starring LaDainian Tomlinson. Well-dressed and calm, he’s holding a postgame news conference. A ...

A Static Charge

Chula Vista Deputy Mayor John McCann wants the San Diego Chargers to build a new stadium in Chula Vista. During the past few years, the councilmember has gone on the offensive to get the team ...

Train Travel Shake-Up

An earthquake occurred at 6 p.m. Friday evening, June 19, off the coast of Southern California. The USGS website reported the quake as a 4.1 magnitude event with its epicenter 45 miles west-southwest of Oceanside, ...

Burdick’s back taxes

Any doubts about the continuing political involvement of the Union-Tribune under Platinum Equity, its new owner from Beverly Hills, were erased two weeks ago with the appointment to the port commission of Lee Burdick — ...

John Vanderslice

John Vanderslice had been playing music for several years, first as a member of MK Ultra and then as a solo artist, but his career didn’t really take off until he set up camp in ...

Uli John Roth

The Scorpions, a German heavy metal band, date back to the ’60s. Around that time, the trend for hard rock guitarists was to break from the blues-rock tradition by playing fast, long, clean solos that ...

Sautéed White Shrimp and Sweet Pea Risotto

by Paul Mccabe, Executive Chef, Kitchen 1540 I grew up in a family where my mom didn’t work out of the home. She was a good country cook — actually, one of the last. I ...

Friends Christian Fellowship

Friends Christian Fellowship meets in a Santee office park suite artfully converted into a cozy chapel. Several times a year, they set up outreaches across the 67 at Shadow Hills Park. “One time,” said Pastor ...

Sticking with Stocks

How do you rebalance when the economy is so unbalanced? That is the question facing all money managers and particularly the fiduciaries that run pension funds for employees. Periodically — say, once a year — ...

Freeworld Rockin'

Phil Bellante comes from a long line of politically aware, socially relevant, musically adroit, and vocally unpredictable singer-songwriters like Neil Young, Harry Nilsson, Perry Farrell, Bruce Springsteen, and their deep-thought freeworld-rockin’ brethren. Think Edwin McCain ...

How's It Goin', Everybody?

June has had damp cool about it. The sky, for most of the month, scallop and oyster clouds. Congealing bruises showed at intervals beneath the marine layer, a kind of lividity: the chill skin of ...

Discrepancies Aside

The news, or at any rate the publicity, that Woody Allen had originally written Whatever Works for Zero Mostel (d. 1977) and had only lately pulled the script out of a drawer and plugged in ...

The Ponds at Daley Ranch

The “ponds tour,” suitable for hikers, runners, and mountain bikers, serves as a fine introduction to the City of Escondido’s Daley Ranch — a sprawling, 3000-acre open-space preserve in the hills north of town. The ...

Another Side of BBQ

And now, for a completely different style of barbecue: Japanese yakiniku. Sensei Shima, Samurai Jim’s martial-arts teacher, favors Suzuya for it; Jim and his fellow students often eat there with the master after class. Jim ...

Fallbrook’s Mine — A Hit or the Pits?

A pristine wilderness area northeast of Fallbrook is at the center of a heated controversy, pitting local residents against a multibillion-dollar Fortune 1000 construction company. Five years ago Granite Construction announced its plan to develop ...

Issa’s gold

Personal financial disclosure reports for members of Congress covering 2008 have been filed, and they reveal that the richest local congressman is still North County Republican Darrell Issa. Noteworthy transactions of the multimillionaire, who made ...

Sent to Sea Level

‘You sit there with a machine that pumps an Albuturol mist into your lungs.” I ask, “Did you have a mask on?” “No. It’s like a pipe.” Speaking is a woman I’ll call Margaret, an ...

Try to Remember

The first time I saw The Fantasticks, way back when, I took my fiancée. We adored the chipper first act, in which a “tender and callow” boy and girl fall in a love beyond metaphor. ...

Time of the Season

Thursday 25Local punk-rock heroes the Zeros reunite tonight at Bar Pink in North Park. Chula Vista High grads Javier Escovedo and Robert Lopez (aka El Vez), with Hector Peñalosa and Baba Chenelle, became known as ...

A Summer Unstuck

“My kids are like druggies,” lamented my friend Nancy. “If you give them sugar or TV, they don’t want to stop.” I sympathized. “I know what you mean about the TV. Between that and the ...

Sara Petite

Sara Petite, at first listen, sounds not unlike a (very) country version of Metric’s Emily Haines, but the similarities stop there; where Haines’s voice possesses an ethereal quality, Petite’s has the confident folk twang of ...

Caribbean Tide, Killer Words

Dear Matt: My parents and aunt and uncle just got back from the Caribbean on vacation. We all got together to look at their pictures, and in the middle of everything, my uncle pipes up ...

Border-Crossing Cyber Sessions

With two of the six members of Spanish alt-rock band Marquez! living in Jalisco, Mexico, three living in San Diego, and one living in Tijuana, the band has had to find creative ways to record ...

Twilight Series

What are you reading? “I just started the first book of the The Twilight Series. My sister has been telling me to read them. I’m actually a Harry Potter fan — I just finished all ...

All the Fine New Prefixes

Thirty Years AgoDear Matthew Alice:How do you get hold of the words to a song when you can’t understand them on the record? [As] the critic Greil Marcus said in Rock and Roll Will Stand, ...

Puttin' on the Hits

Canes Bar & Grill in Mission Beach has been an obstacle in Randy Wood’s attempt to revive his success of the 1980s. At least, that is, according to Wood, who in his heyday created a ...

Letters

Crossword Crack The crossword puzzle in today’s issue is weird. The numbers are off or something. I can’t figure it out. This is my “crack,” so I’m going through withdrawals…help! Name Withheld via email Due ...

The Lakers vs. Luna Llena

I drove up to Oceanside for a surprise party that Wayne was throwing for his wife’s birthday. I squeezed into a spot on the street, slightly blocking the driveway of a nearby neighbor. I could ...

The Red Wing and the Rock Star

Which former San Diego County resident looms largest in popular music? Zappa? Waits? Jewel? A case can be made for Eddie Vedder, who went from struggling SD musician to front man of grunge monsters Pearl ...

Unfair Fair?

The theme for this year’s Del Mar Fair is “Music Mania.” Chris Behar of reggae band High Tide thinks that’s false advertising. “The fair is supposed to be all about music this year. They are ...

Big Kahuna Flavors

Huh? Last time I came through these doors this was a Chinese place, the Silver Sea. Now it’s Hawaiian. Very Hawaiian. Bright yellow and sea-green walls, canoe paddles, three toothy, life-size tikis, and that bright ...

Double Negatives

At the Tuesday, June 23, meeting of the County Board of Supervisors, county supervisors heard an amendment, introduced by county supervisor Bill Horn, Sheriff Bill Kolender, and District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis that “prohibits illegal medical ...

Tuesday, June 23

You Can't Drink The Early Bird Special

Its hard find a good place to drink in Chula Vista. I don't know what scheme the city planners enacted to kill the night life, but it worked. Finding a nice bar in Chula Vista ...

June 18 Sudoku Contenders

EVIL Daniel Aames, Carmel Valley, 8. Everyone share! See you at SDReader.com/puzzle. Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 8. Single payer is the only answer! End of discussion! Jean Bradley, Spring Valley, 8. Love my girls: Wendy, ...

Las Vegas’s Chinatown

It is a cool 60 degrees outside and the crowd is watching in amazement at what can only be the strangest site in our modern universe, Las Vegas’s Chinatown. Though much smaller then San Francisco’s ...

Monday, June 22

Paso Robles: Great Wines are Closer Than You Think!

Where are the great wines of California? If your thoughts immediately jump to Northern California’s Napa/Sonoma region, then you’re missing the wines of Paso Robles in Central California. Paso Robles boasts over 200 wineries nestled ...

Santa Barbara: Stearn's Wharf and the Art Walk

I have a love-hate relationship with Santa Barbara. On the one hand, it is a pretty little town, filled with pretty people doing pretty little things. On the other, Santa Barbara is quirky and set ...

Big Bones of Contention

For the past two months, the future site of Thomas Jefferson Law School in the East Village has been the location of an orderly protest regarding labor matters. At the southeast corner of 11th and ...

No More Eyesore in O.B.

For longtime residents of O.B., their community is representative of many things, from tolerance of alternative lifestyles to richly colored cliffs at sunset. As for the elements that creep in like crabgrass in a perfectly ...

Try, Try Again?

Eleven days after a man from Mexico was arrested in Imperial Beach for allegedly trying to smuggle 25 pounds of marijuana on a surfboard, two more men were arrested for trying the same trick. Border ...

Saturday, June 20

State's TB Scare

A San Diego State University student who attended classes during the spring 2009 semester has been diagnosed with active, infectious tuberculosis. The student is considered to have been contagious between March 1 and May 21. ...

Friday, June 19

At Home at Vista Ranch...

"One minute, a ruler is seated on their throne...the next minute, they are thrown out on their seat!" --Redd Foxx The part of Vista I call home is a former motel called Vista Ranch. Located ...

Thursday, June 18

La Policia Scare the Pants Off Prostitutes

Two hundred and fifty heavily armed and armored police from three branches of Mexican law enforcement raided several nightclubs, hotels, and pleasure emporiums in Tijuana's Zona Norte nightclub district on Friday night, according to Tijuana ...

California Academy of Science Museum, San Francisco

Nowadays, more and more people – and businesses – are becoming eco-conscious. Adding to this trend is the world’s greenest museum, the California Academy of Science Museum. Located in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, this ...

Villefranche-sur-Mer, France

Bonjour! My boyfriend and I indulged in a seven-night cruise of the western Mediterranean. On day two, the vessel docked at Villefranche, France. We decided to explore France on our own instead of booking an ...

Wednesday, June 17

The Restaurant Issue

We eat to live, they eat for a living.

It’s Hard to Eat With a Paper Bag Over My Head by Naomi Wise I arrived in San Diego nine years ago, a well-spoiled food snob coming down (pun intended) from San Francisco like the ...

Hauling Butt

Imperial Beach sheriff deputies are investigating a violent three-car accident that sent two drivers to the hospital. At 9:10 a.m., Wednesday, June 17, at the intersection of 13th Street and Holly Avenue, a red Nissan ...

Rabbits Run Amok in Mira Mesa

On Wednesday, June 17, the ever-growing rabbit population in the Tampico Community, a residential area of Mira Mesa overlooking Black Mountain canyon, lost two members. In isolated incidents, one rabbit was hit by a car ...

Lights, Camera, Cuts

Still upset over last week’s decision to include car allowances for top-level management into their base pay and looking for new ways the city can save money, despite already passing a balanced budget, Chula Vista ...

Family Banding

Mid-May, after a show at Canes, Rhythm and the Method lead singer Rhythm Turner was saying goodbye to her girlfriend when she was attacked. Her dad, Papa Shawn, is a guitarist in Rhythm and the ...

Volcano Energy, Made From Scratch, Freeway Sign Mileage

Hey, Matt: Is it possible to get free energy from volcanoes? — Big Thinker, via email We’re already doing it, Big. Sort of. If you’re thinking of harnessing the energy in those wow!, picturesque volcanic ...

Jack and Duke and Tiffany

About a month ago, I drove to El Cajon for an annual horseshoe tournament in memory of Jack and Duke, two deceased friends of the organizers. When Chris called to tell me about it, he ...

Zank

Zank’s new album, Without a Bridge, sounds like a primer for how to make a pop album, right down to the key changes. The construction is there — harmonies in the right place, solos expertly ...

Swift Serenade

Luke Walton, an 18-year-old Carlsbad resident and recent graduate of La Costa Canyon High, is getting popular because of a song he sort of wrote, a love song for Taylor Swift. He posted it on ...

Hiromi

There’s a kind of primal pleasure in watching a slight Asian woman systematically manhandle an array of expensive keyboards onstage. That’s one way to describe watching Hiromi — a jazz-fusion pianist — and her unique ...

Like Stank on Erykah

“My parents maintained a very musical household,” says singer-trumpeter Tori Roze. “My mom played with Randy Holden, the lead guitarist in Blue Cheer, and she opened for groups like Canned Heat and Three Dog Night. ...

Penny Foolish

The old aphorism “penny wise, pound foolish” has been revised to “penny-stock wise guys get pounded.” San Diego has reams of penny stocks: don’t get foolish. Actually, the Securities and Exchange Commission defines a penny ...

Down the East Fork

Born from snow-fed rivulets, the many tributaries of the East Fork San Gabriel River gather together to form one of the liveliest streams in the San Gabriel Mountains. At “the Narrows” of the East Fork, ...

Clay Pigeon Flies Solo

“I’ve always considered my career in the defense industry to be my plan A,” says rapper Jimmy Powers, who by day is an administrative security engineer with a Department of Defense contractor in Torrey Pines. ...

Letters

No Barbecue Qualifications This is in reference to a review that Naomi Wise recently wrote about one of your advertising clients, the House of BBQ (“Smoking or Non?” Restaurant Review, June 11). The review was ...

Stomp Off-Leash Park Romp

Bella, Jeff’s five-year-old Labrador mix, crouches five feet from her owner at a park in San Carlos. She stares at the rubber ball inserted in a sort of handheld catapult called a “Chuckit!” Jeff rears ...

Shamey Jays, Even Keel, and Berkley Hart

Artist: The Shamey JaysSong: “My Machine Kicks Your Machine’s Ass” (from the CD Your Pretty Packages)Heard By: Sarah Nelson, DowntownIt was fun. It’s something that I’d want to listen to while I’m doing something like ...

Life as an ex-con

The RAND Corporation, a Santa Monica think tank, is out with a study of how California’s parolees fare once they get back home from state prison, focusing on the four counties with almost a third ...

Heart Pounder

Back in November of ’97, I was doing a live broadcast from Nashville. It was the day before the Country Music Awards. It is a crazy and massively fun, long day — a cattle-call of ...

Due Process

Thirty Years AgoC. Arnholt Smith was alone when he walked the two blocks from Judge Robert Conyers’ courtroom to the Chamber building. One young man recognized him and, recalling that this was the day Smith ...

Passport to spending

Democratic senator Patrick Leahy has announced that San Diego, along with Leahy’s home state of Vermont, as well as the cities of Buffalo, New York; El Paso, Texas; and Atlanta, Georgia, will be getting a ...

Doggy budget

Is Balboa Park part of downtown? Does the city need another leash-free dog park? Can it afford it? Those questions occurred to Mel Shapiro when he read an account in the Union-Tribune about a recently ...

St. Agnes Point Loma

On June 28, St. Agnes church in Point Loma will hold a farewell luncheon in honor of Father Joseph Mel Collier. According to a May 20 article at sdnews.com, the departure of the aging Irish ...

Home Again

An old Vegas friend is on the phone, we’ve been happily slandering a mutual acquaintance. Comes a pause in the conversation, David fills the hole with, “What are you writing this week?” “Trying to find ...

Hula Hoop Revolution II

Speaking with a few young dudes and a few chicks up here in North County, I asked, “What’s up with your weekend?” this past last Friday/Saturday of gloom and damp in May. Justin Daum is ...

Nice to Meet

The art-house patron can only take what he gets. Last time out I noted that the Japanese director of Departures, Yojiro Takita, though he has literally dozens of films in his résumé, was a new ...

Golden Shower of Hits

Thursday 18There will be a Golden Shower of Hits when Hermosa Beach hardcores the Circle Jerks hit the pit at House of Blues tonight. The tenacious trio of Keith Morris (hollerin’), Zander Schloss (bassin’), and ...

Dinosaur Jr.

We all get excited when our favorite old bands reunite, and we tend to overlook the fact that the musicians probably hate each other and are only getting back together because their solo careers have ...

Playpendemonium

The secret of dealing successfully with a child is not to be its parent. — Mell Lazarus Had it not been for the unmistakable racket of a wailing child and the desperate, hushed tone of ...

Eyeless as a Calling Card?

“I call it a Sludge Opera because the music is thick and lugubrious,” says one-man band Zsa Zsa Gabor (real name Samuel Lopez) of his elaborate sci-fi stage production The Blind Dead. “The opera part ...

Blood on the Pomegranate Tree

When we lived among men with guns

I remember it was noon on a warm and sunny day. The air smelled of food, dust, gun powder, and smoke, just like every day. I was a dusty-haired six-year-old wearing a sticky dress and ...

It’s Hard to Eat With a Paper Bag Over My Head

I arrived in San Diego nine years ago, a well-spoiled food snob coming down (pun intended) from San Francisco like the culinary marshal sent in to clean up an untamed border town. Now, I find ...

You Can So Eat Well in San Diego

This is Ambrose Martin. Rich food makes me gassy. Juvenile? Sure. But it’s not like I ever intended it to see print. For the two years that I pounded out pinch-hit restaurant reviews for the ...

My Delicious Ed-ucation

When Judith Moore suggested that because my buddy Hank and I were eating mostly cheapo street food anyway, why not write about it, I thought, “Yes, but how many ways can you describe a burger? ...

Tuesday, June 16

June 11 Crossword Contenders

Flo Abena, Rancho Penasquitos, 23. Happy Father's Day Flor. Mary Arana, Encinitas, 23. Happy Father's Day! Shannon Barry, Pine Valley, 23. Here's what I'll do... Olga Betteridge, Ocean Beach, 23. I have nothing else to ...

June 11 Sudoku Contenders

EVIL Daniel Aames, Carmel Valley, 7. Hello to Daniel and Lisa Erenstein and Mark and Marybeth. Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 7. Beware of the Military-Industrial- "Me" dia Complex! Dwight Eisenhower. Jean Bradley, Spring Valley, 7. ...

Islas Coronados, Mexico

A short trip out from our beautiful Pacific Coast is a vast world of nature; yes, nature does exist and you do not need to visit the San Diego Zoo to see it. Darwin’s islands ...

Rancho La Brea, Los Angeles

Things I’ve learned at Rancho La Brea: 1.) La Brea means “the tar” in Spanish, so if you say The La Brea Tar Pits, you’re really saying The The Tar Tar Pits 2.) The fossils ...

Sunday, June 14

Anarchy Was a Bonus

The Rancho Peñasquitos Skate Park, located at 10111 Carmel Mountain Road, has remained unsupervised since January 2009 due to San Diego’s budget problems. Initially, skaters were permitted to use the site at their own risk. ...

Snake!

On Saturday, June 13, while I watched TV in my Oro Vista Villas apartment at 1:00 p.m., I heard a man yell. Jumping up from my recliner, I went out onto the balcony. I thought ...

Saturday, June 13

One Dope Boat

At 2:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 11, a small boat was seen close to shore near 1600 Seacoast Drive in Imperial Beach. According to radio transmissions over county sheriffs’ radio, the reporting party also stated ...

You Like It Raw?

The May 30 “Baja by the Sea” food and cultural exhibition held at Embarcadero Marina Park in downtown San Diego ultimately sought to encourage Baja tourism, but considering what I experienced, the mission was somewhat ...

Riders of the Storm

On Tuesday, June 2, Craigslist’s North San Diego area listed four lost or found dogs. On Wednesday, June 3, after the unexpected lightning storm rolled through, 25 lost or found dogs were posted that afternoon ...

Take Me to the River

At approximately 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 9, Chula Vista police observed what they thought was a narcotics sale, according to police radio traffic. CVPD officers got behind a suspect car at East Palomar and ...

Thursday, June 11

Searching for Savings

In the grips of a $6.7 million deficit, the City of Escondido is grabbing for every penny in savings. So far, revenues have dropped by $4.1 million. This year’s expenditures are $6.6 million less than ...

Nothing For Nothing

At the Wednesday-morning meeting of the San Diego City Council’s rules committee, councilmembers Tony Young, Kevin Faulconer, Donna Frye, and Todd Gloria (council president Ben Hueso was at a Coastal Commission meeting) requested that the ...

The Path of Least Resistance

When the Imperial Beach City Council decided to forego a special election and appoint former mayor Diane Rose to fill the vacant council position left after councilmember Fred McLean passed away from cancer, the city ...

It’s Hard to Be a Fan

Though the Padres stretched their Sunday, June 7, game against the Arizona Diamondbacks 18 innings in the longest major league game so far this season, one Padres fan didn’t quite make it to the 8th. ...

Smuggled by Surfboard

At about 6:00 a.m. on Sunday, June 7, U.S. Border Patrol Agents spotted a surfer paddling north about 200 yards off the Imperial Beach coast, near the Mexican border. On the orange surfboard, agents could ...

Wednesday, June 10

Please Don't Be a Weirdo

Should I share my house with you?

“Single mom seeks same to share my home,” Christine Bevilacqua’s Craigslist ad reads. “$700 includes all utilities, laundry, internet, [satellite] TV, master bedroom and bathroom. Depressed, uptight, or lazy women need not apply.” Bevilacqua isn’t ...

Smoking or Non?

Is it myth or truth that white men can’t “Q”? (Got your attention? Kickle kickle.) Barbecue — meaning Southern-style barbecue — is a black art indeed, requiring a magical confluence of technique, timing, and taste-buds ...

Online Politics

GOP gubernatorial hopeful and former eBay honcho Meg Whitman has been tapping San Diego Republicans for big money lately. On May 18, former savings and loan mogul Kim Fletcher gave $25,900, as did Jamul developer ...

Free-for-All

“When I did a short tour of New York City a couple of years ago, this guy at Verve Records told me that I’m going to die in obscurity in San Diego,” says Brazilian jazz ...

Keep on Truckin' That Gas

If ever a scheme needs a good euphemism, it’s the Beneficial Use of Digester Gas. Nevertheless, the plan passed its first smell test. The City presented it to the local planning board at its July ...

Un-cowed

La Jolla’s Scripps Research Institute, which has built a $187 million branch on the campus of Florida Atlantic University in Jupiter, has become a target of students there opposing animal research. “We’re protesting the relationship ...

Marshall Crenshaw

We tend to think of the ’80s as a time of synthesizers and performance-enhancing hair products, but the decade was also a time of musical revival. Record companies began reissuing their old vinyl releases on ...

Convention Liars

The sugar daddies that could be expected to bankroll the convention center expansion are on the sidelines. But watch out: the backers of the proposed expansion are likely to twist statistics and distort reality to ...

Guevara with a Guitar

It’s awkward when Joaquin McWhinney’s students recognize him as Quino, lead singer of Big Mountain, the local reggae band that had a top-ten hit 15 years ago with single “Baby I Love Your Way.” “They ...

"Same James" by Jimmy Powers

“Same James,” by Jimmy Powers, was the most-downloaded MP3 from SDReader.com during May. Below is an interview with the songwriter. The theme of the song is about how you’ve stayed true to your roots. What ...

Chillin' with the Shins

Delta Spirit’s next full-length, set to come out in 2010, will be titled Natalie Portman Says This Album Will Change Your Life, riffing on a line from the 2004 movie Garden State. In the movie, ...

Homegrown Gooseflesh

“I was just given the history of the Homegrown brand yesterday by Jeff Berkley,” says Cathryn Beeks, new host of Saturday night’s Homegrown Hour on KPRI 102.1. “He broke out original Homegrown vinyl...I got goosebumps.” ...

Clean Out the Garage

Thursday 11Disco erasers. Jay Reatard, Thee Oh Sees, and Earthmen and Strangers are gonna clean out the garage at Casbah tonight. Mr. Reatard hails from music-makin’ Memphis, Tennessee, hewing hopped-up pop for the punk-rawk set. ...

Love Is Not Enough

Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t. — Erica Jong As Karen chronicled her first few dates with a new guy, I couldn’t help thinking how ...

Hanging On

The WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) is starting its 13th year in business, which makes it the longest-running women’s professional sports league (team-based subdivision) in America over the past 400 years, give or take. That’s ...

The French Get It

“This is on me,” says Carla. “I’ve been saving. True! Ever since you didn’t take me out on my birthday. You forgot, remember?” Sigh. Yes, I remember. I forgot. “Where?” I say. “And how much?” ...

A Chihuahua Named Wanda

Nothing better than an afternoon party on a sunny day with barbecue and a live band. At this house in Kensington, they were cooking up chicken, burgers, and bacon-wrapped asparagus and artichoke hearts. I walked ...

Odor Concealment

“With all of my boys,” said my sis Meg, surfacing from her boys’ messy bedroom, “I really should be refreshing our home more often. Between odiferous shoes and sweaty bodies, it’s a true blessing my ...

A Different Kind of Homecoming

Thirty Years AgoWe rode the number 3 district school bus, my brother and I, from our Del Mar Heights neighborhood up to Encinitas, and San Dieguito High, each morning. We were spirited and energetic, acceptable ...

Escondido by Night

I am staying in Escondido. I am unfamiliar with this town (which is called a city) and so I set out to explore on a Friday night and a Saturday afternoon. For purists who demand ...

Instant Groove

Incomplete Neighbor’s debut album, Suspended Electric Coma, hit the streets May 9 featuring ten original pieces of art on the cover and inside the CD sleeve. Each band member painted several canvases which were compiled ...

Belgian Endive Soup with Hoegaarden Beer

Recipe by Nathan Coulon, executive chef, Quarter Kitchen. I started cooking before I can remember. My grandparents owned the Belgian Lion in Ocean Beach and my mom is a pastry chef, so it definitely runs ...

Mind and Hand Together

How did Shakespeare do it? How did the author of King Lear, Henry IV, Part One, and The Winter’s Tale compose two plays a year for almost two decades? A comparative look at the writing ...

Zebra Riding, More on Odd Door Closings

Matt: I like horseback riding but I’ve been thinking that I’d like to try riding a zebra. They’re related to horses and they look like you could ride them. Actually I’d like to own a ...

Interfaith Service of Consolation and Determination

“If you are visiting for just a few moments or a few hours, please know that you are granted immunity from the painful ravages of religious bigotry and intolerance. St. Paul’s...is a place where a ...

Quid pro cash

Leave it to Jerry Brown to round up the key players in two of San Diego’s ongoing sporting dramas. The state attorney general and ex-governor, now eyeing yet another run at the governorship next year, ...

White Rabbits

When White Rabbits hit the scene in 2007 they were a burst of sonic energy, slightly disorganized but with enough collective animation to rival powerhouse acts like Arcade Fire. Fort Nightly sounded like the work ...

Letters

Amateur? Delicious! I was taken aback by Wendy Cryingwolf’s letter (June 4) saying how much she loathed Thomas Lux’s article about the Zirk Ubu Circus: “Bless this crew of visionaries, joy-bringers, and nutcakes!” (June 20). ...

More Ugly Stats

When the Arizona Diamondbacks were in town on May 6, 2009, the Padres and D’backs drew an announced crowd of 13,646 — a record low for Petco Park (capacity is 42,445). The average for this ...

Permission to Demolish Granted

At its meeting on Wednesday, June 3, the Ocean Beach Planning Board recommended approval of the demolition of two units on a property on the 4900 block of Cape May Avenue. An architect representing the ...

Tuesday, June 9

Fields of Turf

At its June 2 meeting, the Poway City Council approved $3.3 million in redevelopment funds to convert two grass fields at Meadowbrook Middle School and Valley Elementary School into three artificial turf fields. City staff ...

Monday, June 8

June 4 Crossword Contenders

Flo Abena, Rancho Penasquitos, 22. AP Chem stands for "Ate Pocky." Mary Arana, Encinitas, 22. Royalty - great word card game. Shannon Barry, Pine Valley, 22. He stood on a chair and he said... Olga ...

June 4 Sudoku Contenders

EVIL Daniel Aames, Carmel Valley, 6. Hello to my kids...Thad, Faith and Emily. Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 6. History repeats itself, Long live stupidity!, Long live greed! Jean Bradley, Spring Valley, 6. Things are not ...

Wintergreen Dogsled Resort, Ely, Minnesota

I was invited to the Wintergreen Dogsled Resort in Ely, Minnesota, by a friend of mine. I chose the lodge-to-lodge trip, four days of dog sledding between lodges. The food at the lodges was wonderful, ...

All About the Benches

Residents and park users wishing to have their say about the recent removal of guardrail benches along Sunset Cliffs Boulevard attended the June 1 meeting of the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Council. Also in attendance ...

A Scream in the Dark

At approximately 3:15 a.m. on Wednesday, June 3, residents of Bella Vista apartments in El Cajon awoke to the incoherent screams of a man in the parking lot. Before residents went to check on the ...

Friday, June 5

Beyond Pesky Flies

On June 2, county officials announced a quarantine on areas of Mira Mesa after finding four adult Mediterranean fruit flies and 14 larvae in the neighborhood. “They were all found in residential yards,” says county ...

Escondido’s Got Reservations

Many Escondido citizens have reservations about contributing $18.9 million toward a $67 million luxury hotel downtown. Most thought the proposal was dead in the water when developer C.W. Clark was unable to acquire funding by ...

Thursday, June 4

Drive-By in the Burbs

Heading down Poway Road on Sunday, May 31, at 6:30 p.m., I heard a loud popping sound seemingly emanate from my tire. Thinking I’d run over a rock, I pulled into the nearest parking lot ...

On a Dark and Misty Night...

On Sunday, May 31, at 4:30 a.m., a Honda Civic traveling in the northbound lane of Westview Parkway struck the rear left side of a parked ’90s model Volkswagen Passat. The accident occurred between Galvin ...

Possible Prostitution

A handful of Vista acupuncturist’s offices and day spas identified by authorities as possible locations for prostitution prompted an undercover sting operation on Wednesday, June 3, the San Diego Sheriff’s Department said in a press ...

Unpunished

Fifteen minutes before the Wednesday, June 3, meeting of the Imperial Beach City Council was set to start, a dozen residents, a few reporters, and a television news crew congregated outside council chambers. The residents ...

Red Means Stop

San Diego police are investigating a two-car collision that killed a 24-year-old woman on Tuesday, June 2. The crash, which occurred shortly after 1 p.m. at Camino Ruiz and Carroll Canyon Road, prompted authorities to ...

Dug in Deep

According to police radio traffic on Saturday, May 30, at about 2:00 p.m., a man was seen smashing a car window with a shovel in the parking lot of the Vons shopping center on Lomas ...

Kuşadası, Turkey

I didn’t know what to expect when our cruise ship ported in Kuşadası, Turkey. I was expecting something completely foreign, but instead found a charming place. In Kuşadası they accepted almost any kind of currency, ...

Wednesday, June 3

Stay Away From Pinto Canyon

Surreal signs of life in the desert.

"There’s some petroglyphs over in Pinto Canyon," Frank said as he passed me on the trail. Frank Johnson, a handsome 75-year-old man, with flowing white hair and a superb knowledge of hiking trails, is something ...

BBQ Ban Next for O.B.?

At approximately 5:15 p.m. on Saturday, May 23, a dumpster fire broke out in the parking lot at the end of Brighton Avenue. Moments before, a man had been seen emptying the coals of his ...

By the Beautiful Sea

A couple years ago, the 1912 Craftsman-style home at 125 Mozart Street — one of Cardiff’s oldest — was spared from demolition after zoning issues caused an office-building development to fall through. Recently, local architect/developer ...

Sorry, Charley

I was given detailed directions on how to get to Charley’s party. He was graduating from Cal State San Marcos. But the beachfront condos in Oceanside, where he lives, all had gates I couldn’t get ...

A Bundle

The surprise winner (as we are all obliged to call it) of this year’s Oscar for foreign film, the Japanese Departures, is somewhat less surprising when you see it. That’s not to say it’s a ...

Adam's Run

I’ve had two Thanksgiving dinners with Eber Lambert, father of American Idol Adam. Last November, before we all sat down to eat, Eber was doing a lot of texting. He said, “My son just made ...

Come to the Cabaret

“San Diego stands poised to rival such musically friendly cities as Austin, Texas,” says Rafter drummer Andy Robillard, who recently took over booking the Ruby Room. “Now if only we could get those archaic cabaret ...

Baby Carriers

"The problem with the Baby Bjorn is it’s a two-man job,” complained my brother Mike. A new dad, he was having trouble finding a comfortable baby carrier. “Someone needs to adjust the back straps for ...

Rothman Rules

Regulars will recall Ben Rothman, 25, professional croquet player. I wrote about him in the May 6 issue. I’d not heard of professional croquet and was delighted to learn there was one more sport to ...

Letters

Real Life How appropriate to run your excellent lead article about how texting and twittering are now ruling the world (“You’re Standing Right Next to Me,” Cover Story, May 28). At the onset of summer, ...

Endless Summer, Oldboy, Pineapple Express

Steve WagnerBrewmaster, Stone Brewing Co. I’ve always been a film noir fan, and Polanski’s Chinatown offers a 1970’s update on the style that does the masters proud. Water, real estate, politics, and racism in Chandler-era ...

Bang Bang

Guns don’t kill people, people kill people, and monkeys do too (if they have a gun). — Eddie Izzard I exited the freeway 20 or so miles east of San Diego. Noting the prevalence of ...

Cold Case Gets Hot

It was shortly after 2:00 a.m. when Gerald Jackson finished his closing shift at the Barbary Coast, a downtown gay bar at the corner of Fourth and C, next to the landmark California Theatre. The ...

Dyar Spring/Juaquapin Loop

If water is an element essential to your hiking pleasure, then this hike in the Cuyamacas may be for you. Along Juaquapin Creek, you can sit in the shade and listen to the most peaceful ...

Alarm Bells

The morning began with no surprises. I woke up at my usual time of 4:30 a.m. and prepared for a normal day of work as a buyer of raw-material golf components in Carlsbad. I arrived ...

New Life Church

Add Michael and Michele Kole to the list of pastors — The Rock’s Miles McPherson, New Venture’s Shawn Mitchell, et al. — to come out of Horizon Christian Fellowship. “Horizon is a great church,” said ...

Joe Cocker

The history of air guitar has got to include a footnote for Joe Cocker. In the late 1960s, Cocker, a British rock star, was mainly known for two things: A voice that — although agreeable ...

Pumpkins, Fast Humans, High Tide

Hey Matt: Every year at Halloween time I wonder this. Since I have nothing else to do right now I figured I’d write to you to get an answer. Pretty soon it will be jack-o-lantern ...

Arias on the Plate

Old-time San Diegans remember when the Gaslamp Quarter was getting over its “Hey, sailor” sleaze-phase and Horton Plaza was new. Italian restaurants serving affordable food suddenly peppered the neighborhood — but once the rising entertainment ...

Crystal Antlers

Tentacles, the debut full-length from Long Beach’s Crystal Antlers, opens with a looping keyboard sound, but if you think this is going to be some kind of electronic album, you’re in for a shock. Soon, ...

Communication Breakdown

After two years of playing drums for alternative rockers Demasiado, Wade Youman has decided to move on. “There were some creative issues with me and the bass player [Eric Shefstad]. We were banging heads, and ...

They Know Fish

Bay Park. Whoever knew where that was? I’ve whisked past it a zillion times, driving with Hank up Interstate 5 or on the Coaster or aboard the Amtrak. Never even gave it a blink. I ...

Oh, Evan

Thursday 4Brick by Brick books the 30-year-strong “smart-metal” band Kings X. The Louisiana-based trio is on the Inside/Out label and touring behind their 12th proper, XV, a hook-heavy collection that allmusic.com scored four of five ...

Hey, Hoochie Mamas

In March of this year, Revolt in Style called the Buzzbombs “San Diego’s Favorite Party Band.” The rockabilly trio is all about having a good time. “Our crowds are always so much fun,” says Johnny ...

El Cajon Scam

Matthew “Beau” La Madrid, no longer a registered investment adviser with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), nonetheless convinced 300 people that he had a surefire way of beating the stock market. He said he ...

Last of the Blue Notes

Thirty Years AgoIn Duncan Shepherd’s review of Woody Allen’s latest movie, Manhattan (“Rhapsody in Black,” May 31), he makes a revealing statement. In analyzing Diane Keaton’s role as a highbrow writer, he says, “It would ...

Tornado Magnet

The first track (“Hook Up”) on Tornado Magnet’s album Double Wide is about a fishing hole, Lone Star beers, and the good old boys who convene on a Sunday to hook up. The second, “Pistolero,” ...

Tuesday, June 2

May 28 Sudoku Contenders

EVIL Daniel Aames, Carmel Valley, 5. Hello to Lauren Weintraub, Olivia Najjar, Maddie Hearst, Hannah Folk. Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 5. History repeats itself, Long live stupidity!, Long live greed! Dennis Beabout, Temecula, 5. Please ...

Rotten Contract

On Sunday morning, just before dawn, David Larson can be found in front of the DMV on Normal Street in Hillcrest picking up trash scattered around the grey-and-blue stucco building or sweeping the gutters along ...

May 28 Crossword Contenders

Flo Abena, Rancho Penasquitos, 21. Room 409: Where solving happens Mary Arana, Encinitas, 21. Celebrate diversity. Do no harm. Shannon Barry, Pine Valley, 21. 10 was a puzzle: what should Johnny do? Olga Betteridge, Ocean ...

Monday, June 1

Tainted Catch

Divers take note — if you’re in Mission Bay, La Jolla, or anywhere else along the California coast, don’t move a mussel. Or, to be more specific, don’t harvest and eat a mussel. A quarantine ...