2021

Short Stuff: Stinky flowers, chocolate master, El Super not so super, New Village Arts, SANDAG kids on the rails

Do NOT smell the flowers Morbid curiosity-seekers may be flocking to Encinitas soon, hoping to catch a whiff of a soon-to-bloom Amorphophallus titanum. The so-called “corpse flower,” named for the pungent stench emitted when it blooms, is expected to make an appearance later this month at the San Diego Botanic Garden (SDBG) in North County. This world-famous, ultra-rare specimen has not yet bloomed, but it is…


ACLU Report: California’s War on Unhoused People

Communities target unhoused people with discriminatory tactics exploiting legal loopholes, according to an ACLU report released Tuesday. The plight of people who are unhoused has reached horrific proportions in California, but instead of embarking on a resurgence of affordable housing, communities have instead instituted policies and regulations that target unhoused people by harassing, citing, segregating, banishing, and even imprisoning them, ACLU researchers found. “Until California…


Doug Porter Day and he keeps on trucking along

A few words on my personal situation. I’ve got good news and not-so-good news. Yesterday was “Doug Porter Day” in San Diego according to a proclamation from the County Board of Supervisors. I was recognized for my many years of journalism and activism. It was surreal to be in the Board’s space. Between cancer and covid, I don’t get out a lot these days and…


Three-Dot Lounge visits North County Notes

We are going to consider a few outstanding three-dot items stripped from below, well below, today’s headlines. But first, a reminder and salute about he who pioneered the three-dot way It’s been almost 25 years since famed San Francisco journalist Herb Caen (1916-1997) died. For journalists and San Franciscans, Caen was a superstar. Known as “Mr. San Francisco,” his columns were a vital piece in…


More nuclear power is no solution to climate crisis

If you live in Orange or San Diego County, hopefully you’re aware that San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS) has been turned into a nuclear waste dump for the foreseeable future. If you live on planet earth, you’re wise to be tracking domestic and foreign moves to increase reliance on nuclear energy. The United States ushered in the atomic age in 1945 by dropping a…


SD County farming values rebound to around $1.8 billion

Agriculture values topped $1.8 billion for the first time since 2014 and just the third time in 30 years in San Diego County’s annual crop report released earlier this year. The report covers the 2020 growing season, and reflects the mixed effects of the coronavirus pandemic. The total value of all agriculture crops and commodities rose just 0.8%, but that was enough to push total…


Tell mamaw, papaw; 8 indicted for grandparent fraud

Eight people were charged in a federal grand jury indictment unsealed recently, accused of participating in a criminal enterprise that has stolen millions of dollars from elderly victims in San Diego County and around the nation. The defendants swindled more than $2 million from 70-plus elderly victims across the nation, with at least 10 in San Diego County, by feeding them phony stories that their…


24 years ago, Heaven’s Gate couldn’t wait

Dateline Rancho Santa Fe. March 26, 1997. A 911 call came into the San Diego Sheriff’s Communications Center. It was treated as a prank call at first. From what turned out to be a nearby payphone, the caller said something so preposterous that dispatchers took their time in relaying the information to central command. “This is regarding a mass suicide. I can give you the address,” the…



Hodgee, the friendly Lake Hodges Monster: Fact or fiction?

Go down to Hernandez Hideaway at rural Lake Drive in Del Dios and people will swear up and down the long wooden bar that Hodgee, the friendly Lake Hodges monster, really truly — well, almost definitely exists. “The Lake Hodges Hodgee monster is kind of like the Loch Ness monster,” said Stan Smith, a long-time Del Dios resident. Smith, a cowboy poet and man about…