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Bob McPhail and the Reader

Oceanside gay murders, Balboa Theater, Gringo goes to TJ hospital, 20K fetuses, dog served at TJ restaurant

The rejected plan. The archbishop has asked architects interested in the cathedral’s re-design to submit their plans by mid-June.
The rejected plan. The archbishop has asked architects interested in the cathedral’s re-design to submit their plans by mid-June.

Bob McPhail came to the Reader from the Oceanside Blade-Tribune in 1987 and has written stories for the Reader through 2018.

McPhail's favorite stories he has written for the Reader:

  • Stage fight

  • This is a story about the collision of dreams in the arena of redevelopment politics. One dream was that of Danah Fayman, a wealthy and influential arts patron with powerful political allies. She wanted to convert San Diego's landmark Balboa Theater into an art museum, thereby ensuring employment for her talented friend, Sebastian “Lefty” Adler. (June 4, 1987)
“The beautiful and unique dome is seen from all over downtown and provides the central area with a rare landmark."
  • Why Tijuana for sick man?

  • Everything was just out of reach as I lay on my left side in a bed at Tijuana's newest and most modern hospital. I had to sit up or lie down only on my left side because of a stinking wound the size of a pack of cigarettes on my lower right back. (Nov. 15, 2007)
  • The unconventional community of San Aliso Creek

  • “What is a bum?” asks Jo, a short, animated, talkative man of thirty 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 fourteen more-or-less permanent residents of the Aliso Creek rest area, (March 26, 1987)
The Aliso Creek Rest Area. "The area is well lighted, has public rest rooms, twenty-four-hour catering trucks, running water, and a minimal police presence..."
  • No meat, no bullfights, no zonkeys

  • Animal-rights activists took to the streets of downtown Tijuana again on Saturday, January 31, in their most recent protest against what they say is the maltreatment of the city's iconic zonkeys — donkeys painted to look like zebras. (Feb. 3, 2015)
BFI incinerator chimney. At BFI, says Garvin, he tries to identify containers earmarked for incineration that may contain human fetal remains; the company, he maintains, prefers to cremate, instead of incinerate them. “That’s not a legal requirement,” says Garvin. “It’s just an aesthetic thing.”
  • All was not well in Lo Yen City

  • Four employees and the owner of a Chinese restaurant in Tijuana were arrested on April 7 after food inspectors discovered the eatery was butchering and cooking dog meat. (April 9, 2015)
  • Tijuana’s new archbishop rejects the design of a new cathedral

  • In an undated press release posted on the new cathedral’s website, Archbishop Francisco Moreno Barrón said, among other things, “That in eagerness that it be modern, the project does not look like a Catholic church, much less a cathedral.” Tijuana’s archbishop orders re-design of new cathedral (May 30, 2017)
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Local Natives, Nicey Nice World, Sully Band, Deaf Club, Steve Poltz
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The rejected plan. The archbishop has asked architects interested in the cathedral’s re-design to submit their plans by mid-June.
The rejected plan. The archbishop has asked architects interested in the cathedral’s re-design to submit their plans by mid-June.

Bob McPhail came to the Reader from the Oceanside Blade-Tribune in 1987 and has written stories for the Reader through 2018.

McPhail's favorite stories he has written for the Reader:

  • Stage fight

  • This is a story about the collision of dreams in the arena of redevelopment politics. One dream was that of Danah Fayman, a wealthy and influential arts patron with powerful political allies. She wanted to convert San Diego's landmark Balboa Theater into an art museum, thereby ensuring employment for her talented friend, Sebastian “Lefty” Adler. (June 4, 1987)
“The beautiful and unique dome is seen from all over downtown and provides the central area with a rare landmark."
  • Why Tijuana for sick man?

  • Everything was just out of reach as I lay on my left side in a bed at Tijuana's newest and most modern hospital. I had to sit up or lie down only on my left side because of a stinking wound the size of a pack of cigarettes on my lower right back. (Nov. 15, 2007)
  • The unconventional community of San Aliso Creek

  • “What is a bum?” asks Jo, a short, animated, talkative man of thirty 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 fourteen more-or-less permanent residents of the Aliso Creek rest area, (March 26, 1987)
The Aliso Creek Rest Area. "The area is well lighted, has public rest rooms, twenty-four-hour catering trucks, running water, and a minimal police presence..."
  • No meat, no bullfights, no zonkeys

  • Animal-rights activists took to the streets of downtown Tijuana again on Saturday, January 31, in their most recent protest against what they say is the maltreatment of the city's iconic zonkeys — donkeys painted to look like zebras. (Feb. 3, 2015)
BFI incinerator chimney. At BFI, says Garvin, he tries to identify containers earmarked for incineration that may contain human fetal remains; the company, he maintains, prefers to cremate, instead of incinerate them. “That’s not a legal requirement,” says Garvin. “It’s just an aesthetic thing.”
  • All was not well in Lo Yen City

  • Four employees and the owner of a Chinese restaurant in Tijuana were arrested on April 7 after food inspectors discovered the eatery was butchering and cooking dog meat. (April 9, 2015)
  • Tijuana’s new archbishop rejects the design of a new cathedral

  • In an undated press release posted on the new cathedral’s website, Archbishop Francisco Moreno Barrón said, among other things, “That in eagerness that it be modern, the project does not look like a Catholic church, much less a cathedral.” Tijuana’s archbishop orders re-design of new cathedral (May 30, 2017)
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Bob McPhail wrote about illnesses, finally dies of them

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Edwin Arnold: author of The Light of Asia and winner of prestigious Newdigate Prize

Three poems: December, A Song, Destiny
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