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Reader stories from summer of '97

Chargers ticket guarantee, cheerleaders, TJ Jews, the Renegade rednecks, San Diego fireworks oddities, apartment owners sound off

Bruce Henderson: "I’ve had councilmembers rise up out of their chairs, screaming at me at the top of their voice." - Image by Joe Klein
Bruce Henderson: "I’ve had councilmembers rise up out of their chairs, screaming at me at the top of their voice."

Bruce Henderson— stadium prophet

"Every time they raise ticket prices it gives them more and more money to do what? To buy what they hope is a better and better team. The council will have to extend the ticket guarantee, give them $100 million to stay here, or they’re going to leave. The fact is that we haven’t locked this team in at all! 'The Chargers can start shopping the team in 2003 and get to come back and ask the city of San Diego to match the offer of any other city."

By Matt Potter, Sept. 25, 1997 Read full article

Carol Lane of TechnoSearch and son: "I can make a good guess at your income. I can uncover that forgotten drug bust in college."

CyberCop vs.TechnoSearch

“Supposedly a prospective employer can’t go back into your records more than seven years,” says Lane, “and they have to tell you why you were denied employment.” But often an employer won’t say how applicants were screened. Instead of saying exactly why you didn’t get the job, the employer will give you a pseudo reason, such as, “You don’t meet our present needs.”

By Stephen Dobyns, Sept. 11, 1997 Read full article

Poway High pyramid

What's on a cheerleader's mind

No one broke an arm at the Irvine camp, and despite rumors that spread like the Wave across Mesa Court Field, no one snapped a neck. But at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, when the sun was high and 700 shoulders were starting to burn, we were on our way to three ambulance rides, four hospital visits, a gross of plastic ice packs, a dislocation, miles of tape, and a few busted lips. We were also in the midst of literal cheering, which is rhythmic sound and nonsense.

By Laura McNeal, Aug. 28, 1997 Read full article

“Are you coming in?” Mrs. S. said, half-inquiring, half-inviting. “Not under your conditions,” I said.

Tacos and manna: Tijuana's Jewish community

“How much are they paying you?” “Enough,” I said. “Well, we’ll pay you the same amount not to write it,” she said. “Are you offering me a bribe?” I said. “We’ll pay you not to write the story,” she said. “You’ll pay me off?” “Please,” she said, “we don’t want any stories. It’s a bad situation here, people have had death threats made against them, there are kidnappings here and all over Mexico.”

By Alan Cheuse, July 31, 1997 Read full article

Bill Holman and Owen Evans. Evans: "We have usually at least 20 tons of chlorine on site at all these three facilities."

The danger to San Diego filtration plants

“Fire could cause the chlorine cylinders to release their chlorine.... Water could react with chlorine or the lime and the potassium permanganate to cause dangerous reactions. The Miramar filtration plant operates 24 hours a day. Two-thirds of the time, the plant is operated by only a single person. This is not an acceptable means of operating. There are just too many hazards that the operator is exposed to."

By Matt Potter, July 24, 1997 Read full article

Bob and Grace kissing, Dodie and Jimmy in middle. Grace: "I grew up on the Motown sound. But around the house I love opera, especially Turandot."

San Diegans at the Renegade explain country music

The Renegade does not hide behind that generic tyranny of the latest urban middle-class version of good taste. The tavern is in-your-face like Willie Nelson with his red bandanna, like Elvis Presley in his Las Vegas glitter and Johnny Cash in his black suits, like Minnie Pearl wearing house dresses, like Dolly Parton with her blond wigs and all the rest to which she alludes in her line: “It takes a lot of money to look this cheap.”

By Hawkins Mitchell, July 10, 1997 Read full article

Kevin Brueckner: “The most dangerous firework ever made is a sparkler!"

San Diego fireworks fans in a county that forbids them

In 1976 a soundtrack was broadcast live over a radio station, and the fireworks were choreographed and electronically fired in anticipation of the music... The idea sprang from the fertile brain of Rick Leibert, then the program director for rock-and-roll stalwart KGB. Leibert left the station in 1980. He now runs a San Pedro-based business that has developed a specialty in castillos, an interesting subset of the pyrotechnics universe.

By Jeannette DeWyze, July 3, 1997 Read full article

Marie Tolstad:“We’ve come through five bad years for rentals."

San Diego apartment owners tell their war stories

"They eventually moved, and I just got the place redone. It cost me $3000 to fix and get it back into rental condition. They weren’t really bad guys, they were just pigs. That wasn’t the main issue, though. The parking lot was so full of oil and grease from them overhauling cars out there that it was ruining the carpet in the other three units on the property."

By Ernie Grimm, June 19, 1997 Read full article

Stadium concession area. The contract is careful not to mention specifically what the Sports Council will be doing.

Charge it to the taxpayers

"There isn’t even a requirement that they come back with a full-scale program to sell the full 60,000 tickets. There’s no indication that there is any performance schedule. Every ticket that doesn’t sell costs the City money, so they want to have a sellout. What they should be trying to do is sell out the stadium, sell out their 60,000 seats at least a month in advance.”

By Matt Potter, June 5, 1997 Read full article

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“Anytime you have a pool, or a bathtub, or a toilet, or a bucket, a child can drown.”
Bruce Henderson: "I’ve had councilmembers rise up out of their chairs, screaming at me at the top of their voice." - Image by Joe Klein
Bruce Henderson: "I’ve had councilmembers rise up out of their chairs, screaming at me at the top of their voice."

Bruce Henderson— stadium prophet

"Every time they raise ticket prices it gives them more and more money to do what? To buy what they hope is a better and better team. The council will have to extend the ticket guarantee, give them $100 million to stay here, or they’re going to leave. The fact is that we haven’t locked this team in at all! 'The Chargers can start shopping the team in 2003 and get to come back and ask the city of San Diego to match the offer of any other city."

By Matt Potter, Sept. 25, 1997 Read full article

Carol Lane of TechnoSearch and son: "I can make a good guess at your income. I can uncover that forgotten drug bust in college."

CyberCop vs.TechnoSearch

“Supposedly a prospective employer can’t go back into your records more than seven years,” says Lane, “and they have to tell you why you were denied employment.” But often an employer won’t say how applicants were screened. Instead of saying exactly why you didn’t get the job, the employer will give you a pseudo reason, such as, “You don’t meet our present needs.”

By Stephen Dobyns, Sept. 11, 1997 Read full article

Poway High pyramid

What's on a cheerleader's mind

No one broke an arm at the Irvine camp, and despite rumors that spread like the Wave across Mesa Court Field, no one snapped a neck. But at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, when the sun was high and 700 shoulders were starting to burn, we were on our way to three ambulance rides, four hospital visits, a gross of plastic ice packs, a dislocation, miles of tape, and a few busted lips. We were also in the midst of literal cheering, which is rhythmic sound and nonsense.

By Laura McNeal, Aug. 28, 1997 Read full article

“Are you coming in?” Mrs. S. said, half-inquiring, half-inviting. “Not under your conditions,” I said.

Tacos and manna: Tijuana's Jewish community

“How much are they paying you?” “Enough,” I said. “Well, we’ll pay you the same amount not to write it,” she said. “Are you offering me a bribe?” I said. “We’ll pay you not to write the story,” she said. “You’ll pay me off?” “Please,” she said, “we don’t want any stories. It’s a bad situation here, people have had death threats made against them, there are kidnappings here and all over Mexico.”

By Alan Cheuse, July 31, 1997 Read full article

Bill Holman and Owen Evans. Evans: "We have usually at least 20 tons of chlorine on site at all these three facilities."

The danger to San Diego filtration plants

“Fire could cause the chlorine cylinders to release their chlorine.... Water could react with chlorine or the lime and the potassium permanganate to cause dangerous reactions. The Miramar filtration plant operates 24 hours a day. Two-thirds of the time, the plant is operated by only a single person. This is not an acceptable means of operating. There are just too many hazards that the operator is exposed to."

By Matt Potter, July 24, 1997 Read full article

Bob and Grace kissing, Dodie and Jimmy in middle. Grace: "I grew up on the Motown sound. But around the house I love opera, especially Turandot."

San Diegans at the Renegade explain country music

The Renegade does not hide behind that generic tyranny of the latest urban middle-class version of good taste. The tavern is in-your-face like Willie Nelson with his red bandanna, like Elvis Presley in his Las Vegas glitter and Johnny Cash in his black suits, like Minnie Pearl wearing house dresses, like Dolly Parton with her blond wigs and all the rest to which she alludes in her line: “It takes a lot of money to look this cheap.”

By Hawkins Mitchell, July 10, 1997 Read full article

Kevin Brueckner: “The most dangerous firework ever made is a sparkler!"

San Diego fireworks fans in a county that forbids them

In 1976 a soundtrack was broadcast live over a radio station, and the fireworks were choreographed and electronically fired in anticipation of the music... The idea sprang from the fertile brain of Rick Leibert, then the program director for rock-and-roll stalwart KGB. Leibert left the station in 1980. He now runs a San Pedro-based business that has developed a specialty in castillos, an interesting subset of the pyrotechnics universe.

By Jeannette DeWyze, July 3, 1997 Read full article

Marie Tolstad:“We’ve come through five bad years for rentals."

San Diego apartment owners tell their war stories

"They eventually moved, and I just got the place redone. It cost me $3000 to fix and get it back into rental condition. They weren’t really bad guys, they were just pigs. That wasn’t the main issue, though. The parking lot was so full of oil and grease from them overhauling cars out there that it was ruining the carpet in the other three units on the property."

By Ernie Grimm, June 19, 1997 Read full article

Stadium concession area. The contract is careful not to mention specifically what the Sports Council will be doing.

Charge it to the taxpayers

"There isn’t even a requirement that they come back with a full-scale program to sell the full 60,000 tickets. There’s no indication that there is any performance schedule. Every ticket that doesn’t sell costs the City money, so they want to have a sellout. What they should be trying to do is sell out the stadium, sell out their 60,000 seats at least a month in advance.”

By Matt Potter, June 5, 1997 Read full article

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