Thirty Years Ago
San Diego County is the third largest egg-producing county in the nation. The 114 poultry ranches in San Diego, with more than six million chickens, do a $50-million-per-year business. Although the world’s largest egg-production operation at a single location, with 3.1 million chickens, is still Julius Goldman’s Egg City in Moorpark (Ventura County), San Diego’s Prohoroff Poultry Farm, with 2.5 million hens, could easily overtake the number-one spot in the next few years.
— “CHICKENS AND EGGS, EGGS AND CHICKENS,” Manny Ramos, May 17, 1979
Twenty-Five Years Ago
Ernest W. Hahn, Inc., developer of downtown’s ten-acre, $140 million Horton Plaza Center, has confirmed that the eastern edge of that huge shopping mall will be left incomplete when the center opens next year.
Assistant city planning director Mike Stepner, who has carried the Gaslamp merchants’ concerns to Hahn and the city council, says “the finality of the decision” demoralized the Gaslamp owners.
— THE INSIDE STORY, Paul Kruger, May 17, 1984
Twenty Years Ago
Jim Harrell makes a fist. Shows a brown hump of knuckle. How the fist feels is hard. It’s not as big as a bread box, but pretty near the size of a pound round loaf of pumpernickel. Up close, you see that his index, second, and ring fingers’ knuckles have been driven back into the hand. He grins, says his knuckles got that way from doing to bad people what bad people needed done to them.
— “ONE TOUGH COP,” Judith Moore, May 18, 1989
Fifteen Years Ago
Nine Inch Nails’ new LP, The Downward Spiral, is a 14-song meditation on the mindset of a murderer. It opens with what sounds like a vicious killing and ends with the words I will make you hurt. It was recorded at 10050 Cielo Drive, where Sharon Tate and others were murdered by Manson Family members in 1969. Charming, n’est-ce pas?
NIN seemingly has two types of followers: rock fans and disco fans. The first group was in the pit, moshing determinedly to the loud, mechanized beats (which were augmented by two real drummers, needed for the thicker, less disco-ized sound that NIN presents live).
— “HONEY, IT’S TIME TO GO TO STONEHENGE AND DANCE AROUND GOAT GOD AGAIN,” Gina Arnold, May 12, 1994
Ten Years Ago
This letter is in regard to the interview with Maureen Orth in your April 22 issue (“Cunanan’s Curse”). In the interview, Ms. Orth posits a connection between myself and the deceased serial killer, Andrew Cunanan. She offers no proof of such a connection, nor the name of anyone who can verify that one ever existed. This is unsurprising, in light of the fact that I did not know Andrew Cunanan, nor anyone who knew him.
— LETTERS: “I DEMAND THAT THE READER PUBLISH AN IMMEDIATE RETRACTION,” Joseph Wambaugh, May 13, 1999
Five Years Ago
What color is blood that is running through our veins? Why does it look blue under our skin?
Unless you’re a clam or certain bugs, your blood is red. Bright red or a dark, brownish red. Blood is not blue. But then neither is a bluebird or the sky. They’re all just tricks of light. And a couple of scientists got so tired of being asked this question at cocktail parties, they finally analyzed it. Bright red blood in our arteries is full of oxygen. Once blood has made a circuit through the body and is heading back to our heart and lungs for a new charge, the oxygen is depleted, and it’s turned a sludgy color. When light hits skin, it can penetrate about .08 of an inch. If there’s a vein in that area, the blood absorbs the red end of the spectrum, so what we see from the outside are the remaining blue wavelengths.
— STRAIGHT FROM THE HIP, Matthew Alice, May 13, 2004