Articles by Special to The Grapevine

Single on Valentine’s Day and happily so

There’s nothing wrong with celebrating romantic love, but the focus on such celebrations drowns out the voices of those who are fine as they are – single and happily so. As I’ve argued in my research on the ethics and politics of the family, social practices that celebrate romance, while ignoring the joys of friendship and solitude, reflect widespread assumptions. One is that everyone is…


Dr. Robert Breedlove returns to Escondido

We are certainly NOT in Kansas anymore, Toto! I really wasn’t talking with that Wizard of Oz character recently, but rather my bride, Debbie, while we were stopped in bumper-to-bumper traffic on I-15, northbound in our rental car. We were once again visiting huge San Diego County, near Escondido, California, a city we have regularly enjoyed since we permanently relocated from San Diego to Our…


Groundhog Day, what’s with those groundhogs anyway

According to legend, if the groundhog sees his shadow on February 2nd, there will be six more weeks of winter; if not, an early spring is predicted. This year no shadow. Of course groundhogs – also known as woodchucks – don’t emerge at this time just to be furry weather predictors. So what’s the real reason? Research into groundhog biology shows they have other priorities…


Why are so few people born on Christmas Day, New Year’s and other holidays?

Christmas and New Year’s are days of celebration in many parts of the world when people gather with family and friends. One thing many typically don’t celebrate on those days is a birthday. That’s because Dec. 25 is the least popular day in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand to give birth. In England, Wales and Ireland, it’s the second-least popular, behind Dec. 26, when…


Before Babe Ruth, there was Gavvy Cravath

(Editor’s Note: Gavvy Cravath was an Escondido native, perhaps the first Major League Baseball star from San Diego County. Patrolling right field at the historic Baker Bowl for the Dead Ball Era Philadelphia Phillies, he led the National League in home runs six times in the years just prior to Babe Ruth’s arrival on the scene. Later, a Laguna Beach municipal judge, the crusty Cravath,…


From San Marcos ‘Dressing’ to Thanksgiving

(Editor’s Note: This was the state of the holiday just one year pre-COVID, for those with nostalgia for the way ot was before social distancing and over 770,000 Americans lost their lives…) California supplies the nation’s Thanksgiving tables California ranked #8 in turkey production in the United States (2016), and supplied most of the western states from our poultry farms located in several areas in the state….


J’accuse: Esc. youth council members say Esc. Council member Morasco went racist over Allegiance Pledge

Immediately after the Escondido City Council meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 15, District 4 Councilmember Mike Morasco approached Escondido City Youth Council (ECYC) founding members. Why? Morasco, a Republican in his 13th year on the council,  questioned youth council members about their citizenship status because they quietly opted out of reciting the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of the meeting. “It’s incredibly disappointing to have…


Why daylight saving time is unhealthy

As people in the U.S. prepare to turn their clocks ahead one hour in mid-March, I find myself bracing for the annual ritual of media stories about the disruptions to daily routines caused by switching from standard time to daylight saving time. About a third of Americans say they don’t look forward to these twice-yearly time changes. An overwhelming 63% to 16% majority would like…


Columbus Day? ‘California Dream,’ indigenous peoples

The California Dream is a myth for many California Indian peoples and tribes. Since settlers arrived, California Indians’ reality has largely been one of land dispossession, cultural assimilation and even genocide. If California Indians were to design their own dream it would place decolonization at its core. Decolonization is the undoing of colonialism, part of what I study as a scholar of Native American studies….


The man who made it rain, rain, rain in 1916

It rained a lot this past winter. However, as we all know, that hasn’t always been the natural state for the arid San Diego region. It took Charles Hatfield to make it rain 107 years ago in San Diego. The only problem was he couldn’t make it stop. A deep dive through the San Diego Historical Society archives courtesy of the OB Rag reveals the…