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Thirty Years Ago "You name it, everything causes cancer. You can't even drink water, they say. It's all a fallacy, like everything else."

As Ida McNamare moves around the cramped quarters behind the counter at the California Malt Shop, she warms to the topic. "I've been in this business 30 years, and I've seen a lot of hot dogs, and none of 'em I ever looked at had any cancer." -- "HOT DOGS," Clinton Schachtel, March 24, 1977

Twenty-Five Years Ago The last high-rise to open in San Diego was the Central Federal Building in 1975. This year alone there will be four new ones: Columbia Centre, the new Wells Fargo, Imperial Bank, and the new Bank of America. This will provide 1,700,000 square feet of new office space. For the sake of perspective -- there is a single building in San Francisco with 1,200,000 square feet. One of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City has more office space than all of downtown San Diego. -- "ON TOP OF THE CITY," Stephen Simpson, March 25, 1982

Twenty Years Ago "What is a bum?" asks Jo, a short, animated, talkative man of 30 whose troubled life has included a stint in prison for possession of illegal drugs, a broken marriage, and a recent flirtation with suicide. Jo says he is one of 14 more-or-less permanent residents of the Aliso Creek rest area, located on northbound Interstate 5 about eight miles north of Oceanside. "I live here," he says openly, insisting that he cannot understand why that would be a problem for anyone. -- CITY LIGHTS: "POPULATION: 14," Bob McPhail, March 26, 1987

Fifteen Years Ago Helen was supposed to give me a certain amount of spousal support, $5000 a month, which was way, way out of line. But I accepted it rather than get into a big fight with her. She brought the divorce action against me, and where one spouse is thrown out of the house, so to speak, it's up to the one that retains the house, the property, and everything to pay the dispossessed spouse a sum equal to what he used to spend on his normal living expenses. On that basis, she should have been paying me $15--$20,000 a month. She did start to pay me something for awhile, then she quit, then she started again, then she quit again. I'm living now pretty much just on Social Security. -- "MR. SAN DIEGO," C. Arnholt Smith with Neal Matthews and Linda Nevin, March 26, 1992

Ten Years Ago As pleasant as it was, baseball with Dad went well beyond catch. Dad loved baseball, and so did I, and he would spend hours teaching me technique and mechanics, then hammering these into habits. When I was a catcher, he pitched to me. "Ten pitches without a passed ball. C'mon. One. Two..." When I switched to outfield, he hit flies. Most of all, we worked on the swing. "No foot in the bucket. Eye on the ball. Don't pull your head. Elbow up. Arms back, no hitch. Keep the bat level." Over and over until whatever was wrong was corrected. -- "MEN WILL RISE TO THE LEVEL WOMEN DEMAND OF THEM," Matthew Lickona, March 20, 1997

Five Years Ago But while [Dick] Cheney was comfortably encamped at the Four Seasons, where rooms start at $400 a night and a bottle of water goes for $7, part of his off-duty Secret Service security detail was making a little low-class history of its own down the road in Encinitas. As later related by sheriff's detectives, four of the agents got into a street brawl with almost two dozen locals outside the rustic Daley Double Saloon on Coast Highway 101. -- CITY LIGHTS: "CHENEY'S BAD BOYS IRK ENCINITAS," Matt Potter, March 21, 2002

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