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Stories by Justin Wolff

She Hated Adverbs

Judith Moore remembered

My long conversation with Judith Moore about writing began in 1980. We first met at a monthly campus ministry shindig for the faculty of Central Washington University, in Ellensburg, Washington. Judith was escaping the small-town ...

Trigger Happy or Just Plain Happy? Who is David Medina?

Dressed neatly in a white oxford cloth shirt with a blue pullover sweater, David Medina, a.k.a. “Happy,” pursed his lips and appeared to listen closely as Judge John Thompson handed down Medina’s sentence — nine ...

Interview with Oakley Hall

In 1953 Judy Garland made a splendid appearance at the opening reception for the Kentucky Derby. She was wearing a navy-blue, full-length coat; navy-blue, calfskin opera pumps with very high heels; white china beads; and ...

Has Gaslamp Lived Up to Its Promise?

The Downtown Information Center, a service of the Centre City Development Corporation, occupies the ground-floor lobby at 225 Broadway. The center exhibits sketches and charts detailing the area's redevelopment. Its showpiece is a 200-square-foot model ...

Big Ears for Freedom

In the hot frequencies, the 800 megahertz band, one can hear all kinds of terrible things. Good people and bad people alike victimized by neighbors, lovers, drunk drivers, dogs, drugs, alcohol. On a Monday night ...

Leave Me Alone: San Diego's Goths

She was tall, blond, and, like almost everyone there that night, dressed in jet black. What she shouted at &mdash to be heard over the music &mdash hurt, but only for a second, like a ...

No Place for a Beer Party

A proposal to impose a 24-hour alcohol ban on San Diego beaches hit a temporary snag on January 24 when the city's Public Safety and Neighborhood Services Committee postponed action until early April. Although the ...

Something Fishy in Paranoia Bay

Despite a recent scolding, the city, some watchdogs say, continues to disrespect Mission Bay Park and those citizens who care about it. On April 18, you might remember, a San Diego County grand jury released ...

Council Winks at Boy Scout Gay Ban

The Desert Pacific Council of the Boy Scouts of America forced the city's hand in November when it asked for a 50-year extension of its lease on 16 acres of land in Balboa Park, where ...

State Testing Programs

The expression "high stakes" is a favorite idiom among San Diego educators these days. It doesn't matter if you're talking to people at the local, district, county, or state level -- if the subject is ...

Hard Town for Activism

On the evening of October 11, George W. Bush and Al Gore were in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, being stupid on TV. Gore: "First of all, let me say that if I'm elected president..." Bush: "If ...

Kinder Than I Would Think Possible

When I got in trouble, my father’s impulse was to hug me. He did punish me for the little things, but when I did something corrupt, committed a youthful transgression that had the potential to ...

Poetic Injustices

You have to kiss a lot of toads before you find a handsome prince... Anyone can be passionate, but it takes real lovers to be silly... If a relationship is to evolve, it must go ...

The Ministry of Rum

Bat Bite, Cool Carlos, Cuba Libre, and Sunny Sour. It’s summer: rum season. Time for Mojitos — dark rum, lime juice, sugar, mint leaves, and club soda — and Rum Drinks, the practical name my ...

A Sub-Society of Greatness

'Build it and they will come," the proverb tells us. Today, however, disciples of the precept have little use for its noble motivational message; they prefer instead its promise of material reward. Build a mall, ...

Diver Down

Where the ultrahip go for liver damage.

February 16, 1999: Fat Tuesday. This afternoon, downtown in the Gaslamp, aren’t letting on that they spent the workday at work. They hustle across Fourth Avenue and yell excitedly at friends as police construct roadblocks ...

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