Neighborhood Blog Winners

Our neighborhood blog contest was discontinued at the end of 2012. We continue to welcome submissions in other areas: Neighborhood News from Stringers | CD reviews | Concert reviews | Travel stories

Archived articles

A Love Affair with the Freeway

My Dearest Freeway Five, Having spent most of my life in New York City, I have never truly known someone like you. But I came out here for new and exciting experiences, and boy am ...

A Love / Hate Letter to the Chargers

Dear Alex (Spanos), After almost 34 years together I’m starting to think this relationship isn’t working. I’ve given you my unconditional support, my precious time, and my hard-earned money and in return you’ve given me ...

On the border of University and Nowhere Park

I woke up this morning, knowing that everything on my uncovered porch outside was going to be saturated by the evening rain...Why was everything outside uncovered and unprotected from the rain you ask? BECAUSE THIS ...

CBP Interrogation

After two hours in the pedestrian line, waiting to cross into the US, I'm often a bit knackered by the time I get to the CBP Agent Interrogation desk. I have my papers in order, ...

Routinely Running

It is simply labeled "Blues" — a jazzy three-note riff played four times before landing on the tonic. And then again, with a minor crescendo. This is the iPhone tune that wakes me up at ...

The Battle of the Sunflower Maze

It was an organic farm in the Tijuana River Valley pitted against the United States Navy. They weren’t fighting over pesticides or aircraft noise pollution. Instead, what got Congressman Bob Filner involved was a fight ...

Where is the pedestal?

It has come to my attn.that everyone has their head up their arse. This is what I think as I sit outside Starbucks reading the Reader. They pontificate, fornicate, try to communicate:but "SOMETHING" 's missing:where ...

Ecleticism

Few years back, I was in a posh San Diego rehab battling wretched alcoholism. Every night, my fellow rehabbers and I would pack in the shiny white van, and head off to yet another AA ...

The Neighborhood Watch

The cultural dichotomy of my neighborhood is one that leaves me with polarized feelings of appreciation and resentment. Though my apartment building is technically located in Talmadge, it has more resemblance to City Heights. For ...

Scum-Sucking Ticket Scalpers

Ticket scalpers! Besides Ticketmaster, they are enemy number one to any concert goer. The other night I attended the Alabama Shakes concert at the House of Blues. Luckily, I was able to get in, but ...

Moving Sale

When I went to bed Saturday night, I’d almost forgot that my girlfriend had posted a Sunday morning yard sale on Craigslist earlier that week. She wrote that it would start at 9am, which meant ...

The Neighbor

Ours was a normal little enclave affectionately referred to as our South Park “Hood”. It was really like any other small community, an up and coming neighborhood, home to all sorts of folks, of all ...

Mallow Madness

My heart’s pumping, adrenaline is flowing and I am smack dab in the middle of a full-fledged war. A huge bonfire rages, growing larger with each passing moment, and the ground has become littered with ...

It's Time to Make Smart Business Decisions for IB and Allow Marijuana Dispensaries

In 1989 I moved to Puerto Rico. I arrived on a Tuesday – that Sunday hurricane Hugo devastated the Island. I had a permit to sell clothes on Luquillo Beach, but the beach was destroyed ...

One-Dollar Fish Taco Frenzy in University Heights

This article seeks to find value for fish taco lovers living in the San Diego Area. The Taquerias in question (El Zarape and Kiko’s Place) are often overlooked by economically casual chowers but they shouldn’t ...

Red Neck Gardening

Spring is the season that warms the heart of any gardener. You hold hope and a dream in your hand with each seed you plant. Hope for tomatoes, red and juicy, fresh vegetables, fine herbs, ...

My Missed Fortune

Author: Jake Peterson Neighborhood: El Cajon Age: 26 Occupation: Student I awoke from my daily nap a little later than usual that fateless Wednesday evening. It was pushing 6:00 p.m., and my tummy was howling ...

Look! L.A.!

So, I took the little missus up to Los Angeles for the day. Left the sunshine and the safety of San Diego and ventured into that gloom and doom to the north. She’d never seen ...

The Haunting Desert Coast of Baja Norte

The eastern coastline of northern Baja California is situated on the Sea of Cortez, and supports an entirely different type of habitat and marine life profile than does the Pacific side. Volcanic outcroppings and occasional ...

The Red Light Fight

Some weeks ago in the murky AM hours of a drizzle infested day, I fled through a yellow/red light, accidently, in an undisclosed intersection found in North San Diego County. I knew I had committed ...

Same Route, Different Journey

Last week I returned to San Diego for vacation. It has been nine years since I left America’s finest city for my hometown in New Jersey. Every winter my husband and I ask ourselves, “What ...

Ladies (and Men) Who Lunch

The first Thursday of each month has the residents of North Encanto gathering at a neighbors' house. For over twenty years, this diverse, fun, quirky group has advocated for their neighborhood while socializing surrounded by ...

Why Californians Should Say NO to Any Tax Hikes

A recent poll revealed that Californians are in favor of the idea of raising their taxes in order to pay for Sacramento's massive spending problem. Among other tax hike measures on the ballot the big ...

Ensenada Police Department: An Open Letter of Thanks

We are living during very trying times. Stateside gasoline prices are headed through the roof while, with the correlated rise in the cost of goods and services, Americans with a desire to take a vacation ...

No Place Like Rainbow

There's no place like Rainbow. This low mountain ecotone combines riparian woodland with coastal sage scrub, creating an expansive earth tone canvas splashed with Live Oak, Palms, citrus, and multi-colored flowering plants. The canyons act ...

My Milkshake Brings All the Birds to the Yard

Name: Leorah Gavidor Neighborhood: Golden Hill Age: 31 Occupation: Retail/editor Actually, it’s not really my milkshake, and, technically, it’s not even a milkshake at all — it’s a basic solution of sugar and water, boiled ...

Empirical Order — from the Apocalyptic Chronicles

My name is Axel Baxter and I'm a mean guy. Just ask my Old Lady. I don’t mean to be I just can’t help myself. Been around the block and back and I don't take ...

The $10 Sandwich, or why I no longer contribute to my retirement fund

I blame Annel and Drew, the delightful, the charming, the talented, the delicious foodmaking dream duo for my recent decrease in 401k contributions. These two have wondertwin power-activated their foodie know-hows to create Annel and ...

A walk on the boulevard beyond the race track

I went back to Tijuana last week to participate in a poetry reading at a small university. I say “back” because, from 1999 through 2007, I lived there pretty much full time. I still rent ...

What We Do for Our Kids

Author: Stephen Gallup Neighborhood: Carmel Valley Age: 61 Occupation: Technical writer I don’t claim to be a competent speaker of anything other than English, but when I hear Mandarin spoken, I’m often able to discern ...

Bad Thoughts for Bad People

Everybody believes he is a good person and that what he does in life is done, most of the time, with honor, purpose, and noble conviction; this belief is true of almost all people, the ...

His Little Brother of France

The holiday cards started coming in around this time last month. I'd gone through dad's directory and contacted as many of his acquaintances as I could, informing them that he'd passed away in June. Still, ...

Geezerville

I used to scoff at people who lived in senior citizen communities. I called them “Geezervilles,” and swore I would never live in one of them. Not me. I’m too hip. But, after yet another ...

Notes on American Freedom

My first 2 hours on American soil — Dallas Ft. Worth airport to be exact — were spent in long lines: ‘Freedom’ lines. Because I’d complained about the wait to the person next to me, ...

The Christmas Tool

I was up early today watching for Santa Claus/The U.S. Postal Service. I have never been threatened by, or treated poorly by, a member of the United States Postal Service. I have however been accused ...

From Life in Ohio to Life on Ohio

A women goes over 2,000 miles west and ends up in the same place, how is this possible? I didn’t pull that question out of the MindTrap deck (note cultural reference that makes me feel ...

Doggy Doo On a Village Woods Balcony

Well, the kooky neighbors are at it again at Village Woods. The upstairs neighbor finally rented her apartment to, wait for it, a weirdo. But before I go on and on about the new weirdo ...

The Japatul Fire Station: For Jerry Schad

The thing that keeps hikers going is an insatiable desire to see what is beyond the crest of the next hill. Even late in the afternoon, when we know that we really should be getting ...

Tiny Headstones

The sound of the traffic ranges from “oh my god, are they are going to hit the house”, to white noise in those areas where there are a couple of houses to buffer the unending ...

Roaming Solitary in the Sands

Fourteen miles south of San Diego and five miles north of the land where Tequila pours like honey lays the surfing Mecca known as Imperial Beach –or “IB” as it is referred to locally. I ...

A Grant Writer's Story

I live and work in San Diego, but sometimes I have to put myself in a fictitious world to do my job. I take on the persona of a character in the book I'm reading ...

San Diego, Unplugged

Top Ten Reasons to have a blackout 1) Now we know who we’re related to, electrically speaking 2) Finally got to use 2-year-old new emergency radio & flashlight 3) Neighbors out on porches, talking and ...

When the power goes out

Twelve hours now, the power's been out. And I'm writing by candlelight in the kitchen. The only thing technologically enhanced about this is my .7mm mechanical pencil (do I have enough lead?). I'd be writing ...

Consider the Snake

If you listen, carefully, you can hear the rattles under the house, beneath the bathroom floor. You disturb that snake, every time you set foot in the bathroom. Unnerving, the babysitter called it. Rodent control ...

Over there by the bowling alley

A long time ago I was new to the city, so I relied on my buddy and roommate to show me the sights. He worked over on University in that office complex between the library ...

Where Hummingbirds Land

Butterflies, lady bugs and hummingbirds fascinated me when I was a child. Raised by my grandparents, who were avid gardeners, I still mark my year by the growing seasons. Hummingbirds especially piqued my curiosity. For ...

John Wayne is on my plate

I pull up to the line where "occasional" vendors purchase a spot, and am greeted with a "got a sellers permit?" by a less than enthusiastic employee of the swap-meet. After securing a space, I ...

The Watching Birds

Just the other day, late in the afternoon, I was sitting on the couch, reading the Reader (yes, really!), when I sensed something large watching me through the front picture window in our living room. ...

An Absolutely True Story of Being Deported at Age 14

At first, I was scared to share this story about me getting deported. First of all, I am not a good writer yet. I am only 16 years old. English is my second language. Spanish ...

Royal Highland Island

Author: Caltona Neighborhood: Kearny Mesa If you were to have asked most San Diegans back then about Kearny Mesa, they generally would have answered with a question. “Isn’t that Clairemont?” Or, “You mean Linda Vista?” ...