Culture

Friends of OB Library On a Roll – Raised Nearly $1,000 Last Week

July 21, 2014 by Staff

The OB Friends of the Library are certainly on a roll! The all-volunteer group raised nearly $1,000 last week – including a $500 grant from the OB Town Council.

The Friends made $428 at their book sale last Saturday. This amount will be used to purchase books, materials, and equipment for our library.

The big news of last week was that the group will receive a $500 grant from the Ocean Beach Town Council to purchase a metal bench for the front of the library. The grant will be awarded at the next meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council on Wednesday, July 23, at 7:00 pm. at the Masonic Lodge facility, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.

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The End of Pot Prohibition As We Know It

July 21, 2014 by Source

potprohibitionWithout federal leadership, you can count on marijuana legalization to keep spreading one state at a time.

By Emily Schwartz Greco and William A. Collins / OtherWords

How much longer will it take before the United States declares a truce in the Drug War?

This latter-day prohibition is taking an immense toll. And the stakes ought to be low, given that most Americans don’t want anyone jailed for being caught with small amounts of pot.

But it does require some courage to pipe up. So thank you, former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, for joining the swelling chorus that wants to see marijuana legalized.

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Friends of OB Library Having Book Sale – Sat. July 19th

July 18, 2014 by Staff
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Ocean Beach Friends of the Library are hosting their annual Summer Book Sale — on Saturday, July 19, from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm.

They will be sorting books and materials donations on Friday, July 18, from 12:30 ish to 2:30 ish.

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The Little Thing Our Cities Can Do to Inspire Millions More People to Bike

July 18, 2014 by Source

Photo Credit: Dimitri Naumov

Protected bike lanes help riders feel less exposed to danger, and are also appreciated by drivers and pedestrians, who know where to expect bicycles.

By Jay Walljasper / AlterNet

You can see big changes happening across North America as communities from Fairbanks to St. Petersburg …

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The Story of How Community Planning Came to O.B.

July 17, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Staff: This is the second part of a 2-part series published this week. The series is loosely based on a talk by Frank Gormlie at the February 21, 2013 OB Historical Society monthly meeting. Here is Part 1

______________

The Twists and Turns of the Community Plan for OB

By Frank Gormlie

Last we left off was the Spring of 1972, when the City Planning Department canceled or postponed all its meetings or workshops on the Pen. Inc sponsored Precise Plan. This was due to the establishment of a substantial opposition to the plan, which was in the form of a damning survey of resident attitudes toward development, high-rise and density increases, and a petition calling for a building moratorium signed by thousands.

So, in the spring and summer months of 1972, the crisis was over – at least temporarily as Ocean Beach had awoken, and its residents had successfully halted the threatened onslaught of massive development.

There appeared to be a lull … for about 6 or 7 months.

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Lady Parts Justice Launches in 50 States

July 17, 2014 by Source

National movement using humor and outrage to remove bodily autonomy-hating local politicians from office

it's_a_man's_world_unless_women_voteBy ladypartsjustice

Lady Parts Justice is the first not safe for work, rapid response reproductive rights messaging hub that uses comedy, culture and digital media to get people off their asses and reclaim their rights.

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The Story of How Community Planning Came to Be in Ocean Beach – How Ocean Beach Was “Saved”

July 16, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Part 1
By Frank Gormlie

I have a story, and it’s a story about urban planning in Ocean Beach during the mid-1970′s – and how community planning came to be here in OB. It is a story about how a crisis of over-development encrusted the village of OB – and then it’s a story about how OBceans responded to that crisis – a crisis that affected much of coastal of San Diego and of the rest of the Southern California.

It’s a story how the small village blocked a plan that would have literally paved the way for the community to be redeveloped into a San Diego version of Miami Beach.

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California Passes Drastic Water Restrictions Effective August 1st

July 15, 2014 by Source
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Fines of up to $500 for watering gardens or washing cars – Southern Calif water use actually increased 8% since Gov. Brown declared emergency in January

By Ian Lovett / New York Times / July 15, 2014

With rainfall this year at historically low levels and reservoirs quickly dwindling, California officials on Tuesday approved the most drastic measures yet to reduce water consumption during the state’s increasingly serious drought, including fines of up to $500 per day under some circumstances for watering a garden, washing a car or hosing down a sidewalk.

The new measures come in response to an apathetic public that has ignored repeated pleas to save water since Gov. Jerry Brown declared a statewide drought emergency in January.

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July 15 Is the Deadline for Comments to FCC on Net Neutrality

July 15, 2014 by Source

FCC tweet
Breaking news: Because of an overwhelming response from progressives fighting to protect an open and free Internet, the FCC just extended the deadline for public comments until this Friday, July 18.

By John Loughlin

According to John Oliver, the only two words that promise more boredom in the English language are “featuring Sting.” He went on to explain that Net Neutrality is “actually hugely important.“

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Feeling Hawaii

July 15, 2014 by Ernie McCray
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by Ernie McCray

I’ve been to the islands of Hawaii four times, thoroughly enjoying the unparalleled beauty each time. How can one not?

Maui. The Hana Highway. The howling trade winds, the sudden rains, the rainbow eucalyptus, with its bright green inner bark and blue, purple, orange and maroon tones. The wonders of the Seven Sacred Pools.
Kauai. The Garden Isle. Waimea Canyon, the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” wild chickens everywhere. ‘Opaeka’a Falls after a heavy rain. The wet and dry caves.

Oahu. City life. Waikiki Beach. …

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OB Historical Society: “World War II Comes to OB” – July 17th

July 15, 2014 by Source

Ocean Beach Historical Society Presents

“WWII Comes to O.B.”

Featuring Dedi Ridenour
Thursday, July 17, 7PM
at P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B.

Be transported back to the frightening start of WWII in O.B. by hearing an Ocean Beach native Dedi Ridenour tell of hearing “WAR IS DECLARED!”,

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Reader Rant: Surf School Takes Too Much Space on Beach and in Water

July 14, 2014 by Source
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By Albert Elliott

This involves an incident I had on July 11th with Pacific Surf Schools in Ocean Beach.

I have heard people complaining about the amount of space both ON THE BEACH and IN THE WATER the surf school (Pacificsurf.org) has been taking down at the beach. On the 11th, someone had gone to the lifeguards and asked how much space the school was allowed and can they rope off the area to save it.

The lifeguards told the surf school to remove their rope.

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18 Million Americans Suffer from GMO and Gluten Intolerance

July 11, 2014 by Source
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NationofChange
Gluten intolerance is a hot issue these days. Research estimates that over 18 million Americans now have a gluten sensitivity. These new gluten sensitivities are likely due to genetic alteration of crops, and while there is no GMO-wheat, per se, GMOs and modern wheat are killing us.

Wheat’s mass production turned into toxic junk food, and now the combination of the two is causing headaches, stomach ulcers, prostate cancer, IBS, bladder and pancreatic cancers, and all sorts of …

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Anger and Compassion Shown at Point Loma Library Meeting on Homeless Issues (Without the Homeless)

July 11, 2014 by Staff
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In what was billed as Councilman Ed Harris‘ “Homeless Issues Meeting”, at the Point Loma library last night, July 10, at a standing-room only crowd, angry OB and Pt Loma residents and a few businesspeople met up with folks who serve the homeless. And apparently, there were no homeless people present.

The meeting generated different accounts (the OB Rag did not have a reporter present).

OB Jess reported the following:

When I went to the forum on the homeless last night I wasn’t sure what I was getting into,

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Judge Rules the UCSD Che Cafe Gets a Stay

July 11, 2014 by Source

… and the Struggle Continues

From Press Release from Che Cafe Collective:

The Che Café Collective, a world renowned cultural icon and UCSD landmark that operates as an all-ages music venue, performance space and cafe, will not be so easily uprooted by University officials after over three decades of continuous operation and huge support from students and the public.

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No One Ever Charged in Attack in OB on Homeless One Year Ago

July 10, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

One year ago almost exactly, reportedly a “gang” from OB attacked several homeless men, causing serious injuries, and then also attacked some local residents. This happened on the 4900 block of Newport Avenue around 2 a.m. on July 14, 2013.

One year later, no one has ever been charged with these crimes or brought to justice. It had been alleged that an OB gang, the “OB Rats” were responsible. Here is what the OB Rag reported on July 17, 2013:

The OB Rag has heard from two independent sources that an Ocean Beach gang attacked several homeless men Sunday night, July 14th, causing at least one serious injury, and then also attacked some locals. This occurred at approximately 2 a.m. on OB’s main street, Newport Avenue.

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Sunset Cliffs Park – Is It a Park or a Parking Lot?

July 10, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Report on Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council, July 7, 2014

By Lois Lane

At the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council meeting, it was déjà vu all over again, as they say.

The public comment period of the meeting lasted over an hour, as Point Loma neighbors on Amiford, Stafford, and Cornish voiced their impatience with park graffiti, under-age drinking, any-age drug use, all accompanied by cars, noise and general disruption by the people involved (not all homeless in this case), most of it at night, with the park a regular hangout.Not to mention the off-leash dogs.

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Tell SeaWorld: Stop the Nightly Fireworks

July 9, 2014 by Source
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Sign the Online Petition

There’s now an online petition to get SeaWorld to put a halt to their nightly fireworks explosions. As of Wednesday morning (July 9), it had 1,754 signatures.

Here is what the website states:

STOP the Nightly Fireworks at SeaWorld

SeaWorld is damaging the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of San Diegans on a nightly basis, 90 days straight during the summer season alone. They are causing hearing damage and overall the physical well-being of the citizens of San Diego who live within a 20 mile radius or larger.

The fireworks at SeaWorld constitute animal cruelty. Dogs, cats, and other companion animals don’t understand that the terrifying loud bangs are a celebration.

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Certain Bare Facts About San Diego

July 9, 2014 by Source

By Norma Damashek / NumbersRunner

cursusThere are certain bare facts about our city that we ­– as informed San Diegans and curious citizens – would benefit from knowing more about.

The intent of my upcoming commentaries is to shed light on the anatomy of hometown government while getting the bare facts out in the open.

Having just weathered the July 4th weekend, why don’t we start with some bare facts about flashy celebrations, San Diego style.

You’re probably aware that the job of drumming up money and excellent ideas for a centennial celebration of the 1915 Balboa Park Panama-California exposition (Panama refers to the canal, not the hat or cigar) …

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News From Around the Surf and Sand of Ocean Beach

July 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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* No Injuries a Miracle as SUV Plows into OB Episcopal Church

A Honda Pilot SUV plowed into OB’s Episcopal Diocese

* No Arrests at July 4th BBQ for Homeless

There were no arrests of anyone at the July 4th BBQ for homeless people in Saratoga Park.

* Volunteers Needed at Farmers Market to Circulate OB Plan Petition

Volunteers are needed as OB organizers gear up for the final showdown at the City Council. They’re needed to help circulate the Petition in support of the OB Community Plan.

* Councilman Ed Harris to Hold Forum on Homelessness – Thursday July 10

Councilman Harris will host a forum at the Point Loma library Thursday evening – July 10 – at seven

… AND MORE – COME INSIDE ….

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Surfrider: Significant Decrease in Trash on Beach After July 4th – Partly Due to Curtailed Marshmallow War in OB

July 7, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

The San Diego Surfrider, other environmental groups and all the volunteers who massed the day after July 4th to do the beach clean-up found a huge drop in the trash on the beach. A spokesperson stated that there was a “significant decrease in the amount of trash collected this year compared to the last few years.”

The group attributed part of the this to the curtailment of this year’s OB Marshmallow War.

In a press release from Surfrider San Diego, they announced that nearly 650 people gathered at 4 beach sites on July 5th as volunteers for the massive annual clean-up effort, led by Surfrider. By midday, they reported that a total of 1,410 pounds of trash and 326 pounds of recycling had been collected.

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The City “Dudette” meets the Real Cowboy!

July 7, 2014 by Judi Curry

Cowboy.

By Judi Curry

Weeks ago I said that I was going to stop my on-line dating sites. To a certain degree that was true; those sites that cost money I have now eliminated; those that are free I have kept. About 3-4 months ago I began corresponding with “Cowboy.” When he told me he lived in North Dakota – near Fargo – no less – I knew that there was no purpose in continuing our relationship, but it just seemed to continue, sometimes talking or texting 20-30 times a day.

After only a short period of time – maybe 3 weeks, he told me that we had texted over 2000 times! What in the world did we talk about? I don’t know, really, but our conversations went on and on, and pretty soon we were talking on the phone. For an honest-to-goodness cowboy I was impressed with his knowledge and truly enjoyed our conversations.

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OB Marshmallow War 2014 – a Shadow of Its Former Self

July 5, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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The Marshmallow War in Ocean Beach last night, July 4th, was less than a third of what it was in 2013. Way less marshmallows were thrown, the throwing did not get out of hand, and by 9:30 it was over and there was hardly a marshmallow in the streets down around Newport and Abbott.

Compared to last year, there were no marshmallows thrown before the fireworks, none thrown during the fireworks, and after the explosions and light show, it took a few moments before the first white globs were seen in the air.

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San Diegans Urged to Respond with Compassion to Humanitarian Crisis at the Border

July 3, 2014 by Source
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We are not only facing a humanitarian crisis, but a crisis of values as well

By San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium

The leadership of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (SDIRC), a coalition of nearly 20 community, faith, labor, and legal organizations released the following statement in response the current humanitarian crisis migrant families are facing in Southern California.

sdirclogoAlor Calderon, Chair of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium and Program Director at the Employee Rights Center:

The issue of unaccompanied minors fleeing their home countries is a humanitarian crisis, not an immigration crisis, and should be treated as such.

Furthermore, we are not only facing a humanitarian crisis but a crisis of values as well.

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OB Rag Looking for July 4th Monitors and OBservers

July 3, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Will the Marshmallow Ban Hold? Will Homeless Advocates Be Arrested?

Your online, local website is looking for a few good observers who have cameras for July 4th. That’s right, the OB Rag wants to sign up a handful of volunteers who will assist us in monitoring what happens in Ocean Beach on Friday, July 4th.

There’s a bunch of stuff to observe – and we’re not talking about the surf or the fireworks.

First, if homeless advocates go ahead as planned and feed homeless people in Saratoga Park at the beach, they may be arrested. The group that does feed homeless on major holidays say they have threatened with being arrested if they proceed with their plans. They’ll be doing this from 11 am to 2 pm.

So, we need observers with cameras and monitors for that potential scene.

And second, of course, is what happens down on the beach at night after the fireworks.

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Facebook Conducted Psych Experiments on 700,000 Un-Witting Users

July 2, 2014 by Source
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Subjects Had Their Feeds Altered to Gauge Effect on Emotion in 2012

By Reed Albergotti / The Wall Street Journal / June 30, 2014

A furor has erupted over news that Facebook, in 2012, conducted a psychological experiment on nearly 700,000 unwitting users. WSJ’s Facebook reporter Reed Albergotti discusses the fallout on Lunch Break with Tanya Rivero. Photo: Getty

A social-network furor has erupted over news that Facebook Inc., in 2012, conducted a massive psychological experiment on nearly 700,000 unwitting users.

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“Mallow out!” Says the OB Town Council – No More Marshmallow War

July 1, 2014 by Matthew Wood
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By Matthew Wood

If the Town Council has its way, Ocean Beach will be a marshmallow-free zone this Fourth of July.

Town Council President Gretchen Newsom hammered home that point Tuesday morning during a press conference at the Veterans Memorial by the beach as they spread the word to “Mallow Out.”

“This has been too much. The last couple of years, it’s gotten completely out of control. It has desecrated our memorial,” she said. “It’s time for our community to clean itself up.”

The Town Council is calling for all businesses to stop selling marshmallows in order to keep participation down. Newsom cited people throwing marshmallows that frozen, on fire and stuffed with batteries at last year’s Marshmallow War.

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Endless Summer: On the Verge of the Sixth Extinction

June 30, 2014 by Jim Miller

sixth extinction“The end of the human race will be that it will eventually die of civilization.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

We’ve seen a lot of bad news lately from the dismaying results of our last local election and a slew of reactionary court decisions at the state and national level to the re-emergence of the chaos in Iraq and the seemingly daily news reports of growing evidence that our widening level of economic inequality is becoming an entrenched and sadly taken-for-granted part of our new normal.

Even as we head into the heedless days of summer, we are greeted by yet more studies …

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Fun and Games at the OB Town Council

June 27, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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You never know what you’ll learn or see at a OB Town Council meeting until you’re actually there. And this was true last Wednesday night at their monthly meeting as usual.

Nearly 60 people gathered in the Masonic Center to get in on the action of the Town Council that night. With 4 TV stations present for the marshmallow controversy, there was a certain tension in the air as President Gretchen Newsom gaveled the meeting to order. The marshmallows and the OB Community Plan were the big ticket items on the agenda, but there was lots else going on – not to mention the upcoming 35th Annual OB Street Fair.

OB Firefighters and Para-Medics Have Warnings

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Watching With the Enemy: US – Germany World Cup Match at Kaiserhof

June 27, 2014 by Matthew Wood
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By Matthew Wood

The biggest question is, Why? Why watch the big World Cup soccer match between the United States and Germany at Kaiserhof, the long-standing Ocean Beach biergarten and general German fan meeting place?

Like the idea of climbing so many mountain tops and starting so many world wars, I countered with, Why not? When I came up with this hare-brained idea, …

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