Matthew Alice

Matthew Alice

For more than 25 years, Matthew Alice answered readers’ questions in his column, Straight from the Hip. No subject was too obscure for Alice, and the notorious answer man settled bets on everything from astrophysics to the word origins. This is an archive of Q's and A’s dispatched from the Alice Research Institute over the years.

Matthew Alice was written for about 20 years, ending in mid-2012, by Linda Nevin, who passed away on Feb. 15, 2013.

Articles by Matthew Alice

Sorrento Valley – what little there is

Lost roads, The Corner House, fights with Mira Mesa, how to go south on 805

Lost roads of San Diego:Sorrento Rd., Smilax, Edelweis There was also once a Smilax Road in Sorrento Valley, one in a series of short roads named for local flora. It paralleled the railroad tracks on ...

University City – UCSD's bedrooms

Trolley, Regents Road Bridge, San Clemente Canyon, Miramar jets, traffic

No trolley in my backyard A group of neighborhood conservationists in University City are hoping to put the brakes on a plan to extend trolley service from downtown San Diego's Santa Fe Depot to a ...

Spring Valley – land of contrasts

Dictionary Hill, mobile homes, Deering Banjos, Mt. Helix trail, the new North Park, Noah Homes, horseback riding, Cali Comfort BBQ, whiskey distillers

Dictionary Hill in Spring Valley got its name from encyclopedia salesman One of the oddest things about the Dictionary Hill area, also known as La Presa, is the way the streets were laid out on ...

Allied Gardens – a fight for serenity

Superior Ready Mix, farmers market, sinkholes, Kaiser parking, Cowles Mountain, Grantville, Navajo Canyon, Iowa Meats

Superior Ready Mix dusts Allied Gardens “We sweep the streets three times a day, at 4:00 am, mid-day and then mid-afternoon. We paved the interior street that is the extension of Princess View several months ...

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 ...

The Answer Man: 25 years of facts ... mostly

All the greatest questions and answers from Matthew Alice’s Straight from The Hip column which ran for over 25 years in the San Diego Reader.

Repossession of possessions upon death

Heymatt: A few years back, a friend’s husband’s death required the coroner. His very expensive cowboy boots, sterling silver belt buckle on a nice leather belt, wedding ring, and watch were undamaged. He also had ...

The tallest tree in SD

Heymatt: What’s the tallest tree in San Diego? I have some guesses, but I suspect I’m completely wrong. And I wonder if the tallest tree in these parts is one that was planted by humans ...

Storm-ending bombs?

Heymatt: If we can develop bombs that level whole cities, why can’t scientists come up with the same stuff to obliterate tornadoes before landfall? What is it in these tornadoes that can’t be neutralized? Tornadoes ...