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"We get around," says Mike. "And this place is good."

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Ron and Mike

He and Ron are with CSI scaffolding, working on the big Mercado shopping project that's going up across the road here in Barrio Logan.

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Mike's eating the seafood sub. Ron's got a turkey and swiss. We're at the Ponderosa Deli Market (1897 National Avenue, 619-235-450).

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The old house where the Ponderosa is, well, housed

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Gilbert, sitting outside, recommended the roast beef sandwich

Me, I've got the Ponderosa's pastrami.

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Like Mike and Ron's sandwiches, it cost $5.25. Large would be $6.75.

Kinda interested in the pastrami because just the other day I was at Tommy Pastrami's downtown, having this exact same thing.

How do they compare? Maybe the pile of meat isn't as high, but the whole thing is lusher, more liquidy. Scrumptious, actually.

Ricardo's the artist who made this little beauty. Been here years. Almost as long as Ellie, the gal behind the counter.

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Ellie, with my sandwich

Ellie says she and her husband Eddie came from Jordan 26 years ago. They and their son Chris have been running this ever since.

"The barrio has changed a lot since then," she says. "It's so much better these days."

A couple of customers say they appreciate their prices and the fact that $5.25 for all sandwiches includes tax. Is that cool or what?

Their biggest customers? Probably the guys from the fire station across the road. But everyone working on the Mercado site seems to be coming, too. Maybe because Mike and Ron have put the word out.

If anyone should know, it's a construction worker, right?

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