Articles by dweisman

State Sen. Joel Anderson (R-38th District) comes home to ALEC

Earlier this year, following his sub rosa Washington D.C. meetings with the chief Geico lobbyist, we asked the question: Where in the world is state Sen. Joel Anderson, R-38th District? He’s your state senator in case  you didn’t know, and he was about as far from Sacramento as possible. Answering that question is easy this week. Anderson is at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San…


Seafood on the go: El Crazy Fish reeling in customers at North County intersection

Fish up. While developers dither and county officials dally about doing something at the confluence of Valley Center and Cole Grade roads, Gabriel Pasdor is on the scene. El Crazy Fish is the name of his happening food truck game, and the people are eating it up. “There’s no other sea food around here,” Pasdor said between hearty rounds of dishing up the likes of…


Where have you gone, Pete Verboom Dairy?

Wind kicks across the site of the old, abandoned Pete Verboom Dairy just off Highway 76, west of Pala. Once an iconic and important dairy farm among hundreds of San Diego County dairy operations, Pete Verboom Dairy No. 1 and No. 2 are no more, and left blowing in the Pala Valley wind. Verboom was president of the San Diego County Milk Producers Council. He…


Drought-tolerant plants bloom at Waterwise Botanicals mega-nursery

There’s a drought on don’t you know, and Tom Jesch, founder and general manager of Waterwise Botanicals on Old Highway 395 knows it all too well. Waterwise, as the name implies, specializes in drought-tolerant plants and succulents. And when you say specialize, it means one of the most amazing displays of such landscaping materials here, there or anywhere. “Being water wise doesn’t mean it has…


A good egg is a little harder to find due to new state chicken cage law

Egg-laying chickens at Armstrong Egg Farms off N. Lake Wohlford Road “have less friends in their cage,” said a wry Ryan Armstrong this week, and egg prices have doubled since California’s Proposition 2 went into effect on January 1. That proposition approved by state voters in 2008 calls for 25 percent more room in chicken cages, effectively cutting the number of hens per cage in…


Empowering yourself in the Buddhist tradition

(Sally Busby is an empowerment coach who also gives workshops and is a Toastmaster trained motivational speaker as well as a spiritual counselor. What follows are her takes on overcoming feelings of being overwhelmed and practice, which makes perfect.)   “Do the thing you fear to do and the death of fear is certain” – Ralph Waldo Emerson Put your oxygen mask on first Many…


Valley Center Symphony performs for fun and cultural profit

Somewhere between surprising and unique, the small-town, all-volunteer Valley Center symphony orchestra seems to strike the right note. A culturally uplifting — shhh… — community secret, the local concoction of musicians ranging from first-time practitioners to seasoned professionals seems as dedicated as it is diverse. “Few communities can say that they have their own orchestra,” said Ed Labrado, a master of understatement as well as…


Ag Day brings students to the land of spuds, nuts and bees

They came. They saw. They trekked like soldiers going off to war, according to recently retired San Diego County entomologist David Kellum. And they learned. Welcome to Ag Day 2015 hosted at the Martin Gang Agricultural Learning Center on Cole Grade Road. Some 1,700 local kids from the entire Valley Center-Pauma Unified School District elementary school community, and fellow travelers, swarmed like bees across the…


Ray’s breakfast club percolates with the rising sun before landscaping local estates

On the surface, (the morning meeting) is about communication, but embedded within it are norms and values that are critical for organizations that must deal with difficult issues and adapt nimbly to new situations.” — Marty Linsky, professor, Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government With the sun a mere memory from yesterday’s news, Ray Casarrubias, and his crew, meet at 6 a.m. sharp…


Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services under state investigation

The Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services has been under fire in recent years with official commissions investigating high-profile deaths of children who had come in contact with the foster care system. It’s being investigated again by state regulators for possible baby-selling charges. Allegations are being investigated that Los Angeles DCFS personnel were involved with taking babies from the child welfare system and…