Yoshi Minezaki. He has kept his prices low.
Big money burritos
I have a recommendation that I’m sure will be both scoffed and chortled at. I think that it is time to change the name of Ed Bedford’s column Tin Fork. There is little doubt, in my opinion, that Ed is fine writer of the cheapskate cuisine scene. Unfortunately for me and other slug-like working poor folk, there aren’t any El Cheapo places to grub anymore other than Del Taco. In the 20 years that I have lived here, the demographics of San Diego have shifted from lazy bohemian types, surfers and military types to real estate developers, lawyers, dog walking yuppies, and whatever money-hungry profiteer that exists. Anyway, when Ed writes about joints that have $10 glasses of wine, $8 burritos, and $10 sandwiches, I think that a name change should be in order. Ed Bedford’s Silver Spoon is too obvious. How about Ed Bedford’s Platinum Spork? Make Carne Asada Burritos $5 Again! A faithful reader of the Reader,
Good morning on Christmas Eve. Happy holidays and I wish you a fabulous New Year 2021. The purpose of my call is to tell you how much I love you, all of you, your whole team and the Reader, and to tell you how much — it it may seem like a small thing, but it is not — to tell you how much the Reader has meant to me during this crisis time. When I went to pick it up yesterday, it just hit me how much that little trip, my walking from home to the box where I pick it up, how much that has meant to me.
You know, I get choked up, but there’s just so many parts of it that you know, Immortal Beauty, Ed Bedford, some of the Hipster, the stories. I mean it goes on and on. I don’t know how you’ve been able to do it, you must have had a solid thing before this whole thing happened. I’m sure you did. It’s a great piece of literature. Anyway it means a lot to San Diego and please tell your team, all of you, that I send my love and that you are so appreciated. Keep on keeping on, and 2021 is going to be a great, great year.
“I feel uncomfortable parking anywhere around here. I feel like I have been singled out,” says Amber. “I don’t know where else to go. I just got to keep moving.”
Photograph by Matthew SuÁrez
To heck with Amber
After reading the sob story of “Amber”, describing the Co-vid-driven hardships of living in an RV to avoid paying rent, I can only say that I was unmoved (“San Diego cracks down on anyone living in his car,” Cover Stories, December 16). I have seen RVs illegally parked in public venues, in business districts, and even on my own residential street. It is a form of vagrancy that would not be tolerated in other parts of the country, where the weather is inarguably much more extreme.
San Diego has generously offered many amenities to those “affected by Covid”, even issuing e-debit cards to students from families (such as those on my own street) who have plenty of expensive toys, high-end vehicles, one parent electively unemployed, and constant parties (beer and carne asada are not cheap). “Amber’s” daughter no doubt has one of those free-meal cards, I am assuming. Also, what is her husband doing about finding employment? I see young Mexican men in my area doing all kinds of jobs, construction, road crew, yard work, etc. Some can barely speak English (I speak Spanish) or not at all, yet somehow they find honest work. “Amber” fails to even allude to why her husband is not working. If he did have a job from which he was laid off, they’d be getting some form of benefits. If he isn’t working, why can’t she work? (I worked when my children were young, as I had no choice.) No reason for both of them to stay ‘home’ with one non-infant child.
It is outrageous that people like “Amber” would try to ‘guilt’ the rest of us into accepting their living-in-a-parking-space arrangement at venues (Mission Bay Park, for one) that the rest of us occasionally try to enjoy and have to compete for a parking space which we would occupy for but a few hours. Taking up more than one spot will, of course, get you a ticket! What would you expect? Surely there were signs posted that she and her spouse chose to ignore.
Doug Higgins also whines about all the new red curbs, no parking zones, and other safety measures the city has prudently implemented. Public streets are not meant for living. There are RV parks for that, for all budgets. The City has been kind enough to open up parking lots where people who claim, true or exaggerated, to be forced to live out of their cars can set up camp. Then if the free lots are “unsanitary”, not suitable for “Amber”, and create Covid fears, fix it. Wash your hands. Spray Lysol on the toilet if you must (you don’t...) sit on the seat to use it.
She might even do what I’ve done most of my adult life, be a leader and try to organize the other lot ‘residents’ to get a protocol established. BTW are the other residents trying to get into your trailer? Covid isn’t spread in the air outdoors! I don’t wear a mask outside. Unless the other ‘residents’ are right up in your face, they aren’t going to spread the virus outdoors in the open air. I suspect “Amber”, like other RV street squatters I know about, just want to be all by themselves in their own solo spots. The man in the article, Doug Higgins, self reported living for free in a vehicle for six years. As a veteran, as my father is, he should be eligible for certain benefits. I can’t believe that he has to live on the street and not pay rent. I wonder what he does with his black water? I hate to imagine, although he asserted that he obeyed all laws.
I do believe that some people just get used to not having to pay rent, doing things that would never be an option in other states, such as my own home state. If “Amber” and her husband cannot find work here, and can’t manage on their unemployment benefits (not mentioned in her tale) , they might consider relocating to a state with a lower cost of living.
My own two young adult children did exactly that. Why? Because despite graduating with honors with a BA from a reputable university, he couldn’t find a job in San Diego. So, he moved blind to Wisconsin, yes, after spending most of his life in sunny San Diego and swimming in the ocean. He did that because he got a job offer. My daughter drove across the entire country in her tiny car with two cats and two dogs to relocate to Massachusetts. She did this in September.
Unlike too many adults, my kids want to be grown-ups and not live with, or off, “mommy”, much less the good, kind-hearted, enablers known as the taxpayers. I do help my kids from time to time but, they rarely ask because of the values I’ve instilled in them, the same as my parents did for each of their eight children. It takes guts and courage to pack up and leave when you realize California is just too expensive. Both my kids grew up here, brought here from Philadelphia with me when their late father established his business here.
I’m a fairly well paid nurse and I don’t own a home or even a nice car. The cost of living here is ridiculous so, I can’t understand why people who can’t support themselves in this economic climate, even before the Covid pretext, don’t move where they can actually afford to live. Living in an RV at a public venue, in a business district, or on a residential street cannot be allowed.
Don’t be fooled by the emotional appeal and “Amber’s” presumptuous, reeking-of-entitlement plea for city funds to be directed toward bailing them out. Those funds are hard earned dollars from the tax payers. The government has no money, it comes from the people who work. Nobody ever handed anything to me and I have done whatever I have had to do excepting anything illegal or immoral, to provide for my children. Adults, aside from the very old or the very infirm, need to be more self sufficient and self reliant.
- Jane Underwood
- Chula Vista