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Excerpts from Reader issues past.

What Matthew Alice found interesting in San Diego

Swiss army knife HQ, Reader T-shirts, the real Saint Diego, Torrey Pines coal mining, tallest building, why so few sea shells

Why locals mis-pronounce Garnet P.B.’s OGs (original gentry) pronounced the name as it should be, like the jewel, “GARnet.” Because they witnessed the name-change, they recognized that the street was part of a series of ...

Tip of My Tongue — deep food stories

Grape leaves, roasting hens, tortillas, pork, avocados, epazote

No Mexican food without epazote When I finish cutting back my epazote, I can’t get the smell off my hands. It reminds me of a friend who, while living in rural Mexico, once purged herself ...

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— 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 ...

Southern neighbors — business and politics of Tijuana

Baseball south of border, Caliente racetrack and the infamous Hank family, Baby Rock, Bob's Big Boy, early risers at Club Campestre, TJ Cultural Center

The Sport with No Clock Mexican baseball, like the Mexican economy, is just a half-step ahead of the creditors. The precipitous decline of the peso against the dollar has virtually destroyed the league’s ability to ...

Turn-of-the-century websites — still kicking

Prison penpals, ghost towns, rabbit nuts, Ayn Rand, duct tape, Padres, Russian subs for sale, Lescaux caves, Esperanto, urinals, Hunter Thompson, Russian brides, Ridout Plastics

San Diego's spiritualists battle local scientists San Diego is a logical venue for disputes over the paranormal: it is home to alternative lifestylers and first-rate science and research institutions. The landscape of the region also ...

Straight from the Hip — editor's picks

Useless parts of sports jacket, corpse buried under SD freeway, Disney animals with three fingers, men's jockey shorts

Useless parts of a sports jacket If you like your explanations tidy and tasteful, then the buttons are vestigial decorations, a sort of fashion appendix, left over from the days when wealthy men buttoned tight-fitting ...

Turn-of-the-century websites — R.I.P.

San Diego Polo Club, Charles Manson, Gulf War blog, pisser clams, CyberSleuths — all gone

Cars that are lemons The assumption that most of us bring to the table when buying or selling a car, new or used, is that we will be defrauded, which is usually the case. One ...

Best of Anne Albright's Kid Stuff columns

Intimate writing about life as a mom

The case for motherhood Unlike a lot of my classmates, I don’t practice law anymore. I stay at home with my kids. On a good day, I’m happy about my decisions. I wouldn’t trade Johnny’s ...

Musical San Diego: the 1990s

Local goths, S.D guitarists, Moby Grape, Stone Temple Pilots, flamenco, Deadheads, Elvis in San Diego, Beat Farmers, Richard Meltzer's records, Crawdaddy

Set a needle on my heart and play those songs of love and pain My record collection is a minefield of potential pain: stacks of Ray Charles, Robert Johnson, Otis Redding, Elmore James, Muddy Waters, ...

World War II — San Diego eyewitnesses

San Diego with lights off, a Hiroshima bomber, I shot down Yamamoto, POWs suffer under and evade Japanese, Vietnam vet visits Iwo Jima, sunken subs off Imperial Beach

War! “Automobile headlights were painted out except for tiny slits. You could see cars oncoming, but the driver couldn’t see. Panic would occur when people thought attack was under way. Then if a light was ...

Betty Broderick killed Dan Broderick and his wife 28 years ago today

The marriage, the murder, the trial

Broderick vs. Broderick But when Judge Howatt’s decision to bar the press and public was challenged by the Reader's attorney at a January 5 hearing, Betty Broderick reversed herself and told the judge that the ...

Matthew Alice's weird food facts

Rice Krispies, Heinz 57 varieties, Whitman's vs See's, M&Ms, butter packaging

The noise produced by Rice Krispies When the wet parts of the Krispie finally pull hard enough, the dry parts snap open and make a noise loud enough for you to hear. Have you ever ...

San Diego in the 1940s

Local Japanese sent to camps, tuna boats join the Navy, Midway-Rosecrans military housing, gas station struggles in Ocean Beach

It’s a Gas During the war, Bob recalls, "A-card owners got four gallons of gas a week. We had tires ordered when the business opened, but when the war came, they put them all in ...

So, you think your life is hard

Try steelwork, arson, rape, cystic fibrosis, drugs, bike accident, losing shrink, mental problems, shipwreck, AIDS, being short, blind, fat

Shipyard blues "With all the stuff you say these guys have to endure at NASSCO, anyone would believe the place is hell. But I don't understand what all these queers thought they were getting into. ...

Animal secrets: dog tail-wagging, sick flies, fish eyelids, cat whiskers, and the loss of songbirds

Matthew Alice even ponders animals' morning sickness

The indestructability of cats' whiskers When he’s prowling around in dark places, his whiskers help him determine whether a space is wide enough to crawl through. They’re like curb feelers on Dad’s Olds, but sensitive ...

Southern neighbors — daily life in Tijuana

Cops, dump, Revolucion, rain, taxis, upholsterers, flower sellers, abandoned cars, stealing electricity

The whole area was the city dump They chose St. Martin as their patron saint, the señora explains, because he was a friend of to the poor — because he was black and they too ...

All you need to know about celebrities

Matthew Alice on Bob Dylan sunglasses, Rose Kennedy bathing suit, Pancho Villa's head, Bogart as Gerber baby, OJ Simpson evidence, presidents who smoked

Robert White owns Rose Kennedy bathing suit but not JFK assassination suit The man driving the 1961 custom X-100 Lincoln Continental convertible was William Greer. According to a 1983 Associated Press interview, Greer joined the ...

Southern neighbors — Tijuana, the dark side of the law

Smuggling, the Zeta killing, the 1999 crime wave

Coyote — king of the smugglers You can catch a bus on Beyer Street or the trolley at the Iris Street station, avoiding the “Migra” around the congested central San Ysidro area. Stay out of ...

Brizzolara, from the best to the last

A retrospective, on the first anniversary of his death

John Brizzolara wrote for the Reader from 1989 to 2013, including a weekly column, TGIF. John died in his sleep at Father Joe’s Villages on October 11, 2016. He was 65. A Fear of Cold ...

History of San Diego, 1930s

Local WPA and CCC workers, the famous diva Schumann-Heinck, letters from a Depression housewife, a wilder San Diego, what women wore

Was the WPA a Boondoggle or Saving Grace? It's hard to look around San Diego and not see evidence of the WPA: the city library, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the dredging of Mission Bay (and ...

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