dan weisman

25 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…



Historic Inn at Rancho Santa Fe reportedly sold

The historic Inn at Rancho Santa Fe reportedly has been sold with the announcement expected this week, according to sources who did not want to be identified. The sale reportedly will be completed by May 18. Speculation was that all employees would be laid off and have to re-interview for jobs with the current general manager and executive chef leaving the Inn. No further details…


They threw me out of Bill Clinton’s office

“Ooh, let me get it back, let me get it back,  Let me get it back, baby, where I come from It’s been a long time, been a long time,  Been a long lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely time. Yes it has” — Led Zeppelin Yes, it’s been a real trip — and way too much Linda Tripp although Sarah Paulson’s got to get numerous…


‘Married at First Sight?’ If you must, reality TV show shoots at the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe this week.

Lights, camera, weirdness. “Married at First Sight,” the Lifetime Channel reality TV show matching total strangers in unholy matrimony upon first meeting, shoots its brand of unreal magic through Feb. 5 at the ultra-exclusive Inn at Rancho Santa Fe. Check it out. If they’ll let you. They threw me off the set for having the audacity to walk up the Inn’s primrose path, lingering for…


Pastor hikes road to glory with heavy cross

Pastor Wes Mauch took a road less traveled through Valley Center, carrying a 38-pound wooden cross, a well-worn Bible and message all the way to Rancho Santa Fe. Mauch, 66, walked along the side of Cole Grade Road, wooden cross on his shoulder and all, “doing what Jesus asked me to do,” he said while vehicular traffic whizzed by as if he were invisible. When…


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…


Is Jennifer Lopez moving to Escondido?

Is Jennifer Lopez moving to Escondido? Only The Shadow knows. However, local radio stations and the Internet were buzzing about the possibility that Jenny on the block was moving to this block. While it might be true — who knows, Donald Trump might have been president; the Cubs might have won the World Series — the rumor blasting across several local radio stations and celebrity…


Idiosyncratic dinosaur ‘museum’ went extinct

Always a bit of an oddity, and itself a colorful exhibition of an Escondido antique dealer’s lifelong hobby, the Roynon Museum celebrating all things dinosaur, went the way of the creatures celebrated within, that is to say, extinct, on June 30, 2019. Applying the lofty title of Roynon Museum of Earth Sciences and Paleontology to its decidedly idiosyncratic exhibit and purpose, museum officials this week…


Surveillance Pelicana Chapter 1: ‘Good Morning, New Orleans’

SURVEILLANCE PELICANA BY DAN WEISMAN The entire book appears at this link with chapters added after appearing online: Chapters 1-10: https://www.escondidograpevine.com/surveillance-pelicana-full-book-chapters-added-as-they-appear-online/. Chapters 11-20: https://www.escondidograpevine.com/surveillance-pelicana-part-ii-chapters-11-to-20-chapters-added-as-they-appear-online/ Chapters 21-30: https://www.escondidograpevine.com/surveillance-pelicana-part-iii-chapters-21-to-30-chapters-added-as-they-appear-online/ CHAPTER ONE On Christmas Day 1987, Tyger Williams, video artist, discovers a classified ad for an insurance investigator which he answers. On New Year’s Day, he burns the “box of troubles” at the abandoned 1984 World’s Fair site…