The OB Rag Staff Box
Current authors and contributors to the OB Rag
A few words about each of us…
A lawyer and grassroots activist, Frank was finally convinced in the Fall of 2007 by Patty Jones to start a blog after she became tired of listening to his rants about the news. Way back during the Dinosaurs in 1970, Gormlie founded the original Ocean Beach People’s Rag – OB’s famous underground community newspaper, and then later during the early Eighties, published The Whole Damn Pie Shop, a progressive alternative to the Reader.
Affectionately known as the “tech desk” in the virtual OB Rag office, Patty likes to tinker with things; mechanical, geekery…. anything she can hope to take apart and put back together (including this website).
Got a comment regarding the website or technical issues? Send them to Patty!
Doug was active in the early days of the alternative press in San Diego, contributing to the OB Liberator, the print version of the OB Rag, the San Diego Door, and the San Diego Street Journal. He also has contributed blogs to the Huffington Post, Daily Kos, Voice of San Diego and is involved with the organization Educate for the Future.
Doug is also the energy behind the OB Rag’s lively FaceBook page!
I left a moribund Western Pennsylvania mill town the year that Richard M. Nixon was not impeached for crimes against the American people, and set off in search of truth, beauty, justice and a beat I could dance to.
Here I am.
I was raised in a loving and alive home, in a black neighborhood filled with colorful characters in Tucson, Arizona. Such an environment gave me a hint that life has to be grabbed by the tail as tight as a pimple on a mosquito’s butt. With no BS and a whole lot of love. So, from those days to now I get up every morning set on making the world a better place. On my good foot*, and I hope my writing reflects that.
*an old black expression
High school dropout who decided to show the educational community what learning is all about. If it’s the status quo something’s wrong with it and I’ll scratch the itch!
Annie Lane is a freelance writer with a passion for the environment and the separation of church and … just about everything. Annie grew up on a sailboat and was raised “throughout the world” as her family spent six and a half years circumnavigating the globe. She lives with her fiancé, their daughter and a host of wayward animals in Point Loma, and can sometimes be found scaling its hills on a long afternoon walk.
Jim Miller, a professor at San Diego City College, is the co-author of Under the Perfect Sun: The San Diego Tourists Never See and Better to Reign in Hell, and author of the novel Drift. His most recent novel on the San Diego free speech fights and the IWW, Flash, is on AK Press.
Terrie Leigh Relf
Terrie is a free lance writer and author who writes for the OB Rag about local happenings and sustainability issues. She is a member of the Science Fiction Poetry Association and Horror Writers Association, and is also an editor and writing coach. She has been nominated for four Rhysling Awards, the James B. Baker Award, and The Preditors and Editors Award.
Michael is a long time activist and writes on many issues. In his words,
“My coming of age coincided with the revolutions of the 1960s, and all this combined to help me find my meaning as an adult through an anti-authoritarian impulse, and to seek liberation in all forms, foreign and domestic. I became an activist and took up many causes, anti-war, anti-nuke, food co-ops, music other cultural insurrections, the Irish freedom struggle, squatting in San Francisco, more recently defending my aging parents from the ravishes of age and a society that would just as soon throw them on the garbage heap.”
“I eventually found a way to express my views in activism through writing, in journalism that dug up the dirt and threw it back in the face of the dirtbags. But I needed to find ways to express more, to dig down into the emotions that in the end are all we are, even though polite society does it’s damndest to cover it all up and bury us alive from the day we’re born.”
Michael’s books are available from Black Rain Press.
A pro sysadmin/horticulturalist and sometimes writer/activist. Marc was a founding member of the Ocean Beach Grassroots Organization (OBGO) and was active in bringing the OB Rag into the digital realm starting in 2000. He moved west to join the OB Blackfoot tribe in 97 coming from the Ottawa Valley, eh. An avid outdoorsman and walker, he enjoyed blackening his feet with long barefoot walks around OB. He has since moved back to the Ottawa area, where they speak Franglais instead of Spanglish, but still visits OB whenever possible.
Dave grew up in East County, where El Cajon meets La Mesa meets Spring Valley, but always had a fondness for OB, where his parents had been taking him on weekends since he was young. He bounced in and out of private, public, and home school systems before finally dropping out about halfway through his third freshman year of junior college. Politicized at an early age by his father, his interest has always been in opposition politics, though his slant toward progressive ideas developed later. At 13, he started working in a bicycle shop and had his own parts-and-repair business operating by 16. After a brief stint in banking (he was fired for performing his job too effectively), he’s returned to the family real estate brokerage with his father and sister. He currently resides in the southern portion of OB with his partner and elementary-age daughter.
Thankful for the opportunity to cruise through this world with a purpose.
Citizen Cane writes a column for the OB Rag called “The Hitchikers’ Guide to Ocean Beach“, where he highlights little known historical facts and other OB oddities.
Jon Carr is a San Diego native who has resided in Ocean Beach for the past decade. He enjoys Nati’s burrito special, short walks on the beach and high-fiving people as they walk past him on the street. Jon wants to focus on the people that make Ocean Beach such a great place to live. That means you!
Andy spent 15 years working in the highest levels of the San Diego professional sports world, including both the Padres and the Chargers. He began his foray into writing while a volunteer for Francine Busby’s 2010 Congressional campaign, eventually becoming a contributor to the now defunct SDNN. He has reported on local and national politics for both the OB Rag and the San Diego Free Press. When not reporting news and events, he offers political and policy commentary from a liberal perspective, occasionally turning back to his sports roots. While he does not hide his more liberal political bent, Andy always strives for fairness in the telling of a story.
Scratchy curmudgeon with a reflective side, my students call me Lao Xu Long (Old Snow Dragon). Surfer, teacher, facilitator, recovering attorney (I’ve had all my shots), cook, canine steward and writer, I proudly maintain dual citizenship with the People’s Republic of O.B. and Planet Earth. Opening a can of worms is only the beginning of a good time and don’t change the subject to avoid doing so. Peace be with you and Namaste…
Lane hopes to provide a fresh perspective on local and national issues pertaining to social and economic justice. Having worked as a community organizer in both rural and urban communities, Lane believes that basic human rights, such as access to healthy food, shelter, and preventive health care, are the key to healthy communities. As a writer for the OBRag, Lane hopes to bring much needed attention to important social issues and plans to offend as many people as possible. Lane lives in
OB New Jersey with his girlfriend and happily accepts personal gifts (such as bottles of Jack Daniels).
Mary E. Mann
Mary enjoys the sound of rain and the pop when the needle hits a record. Anything more that you need to know about her can be found on her website, www.maryemann.com.
Brenda moved to LA from Toronto to find work as a TV writer. There she met Kevin. He brought her to SD to show off the city and take her to a baseball game. They kept coming back, especially to OB. One day they saw the light and realized who they really wanted to be. They’ve lived in OB ever since.
A college educated, decorated military veteran, accomplished mountaineer, defender of the working class and advocate for socialism.
Rocky Neptun passed away in 2013. He had been a director of the San Diego Renters Union. He calls himself an “aging peacenik” and was imprisoned for his human rights work, ferrying young Portuguese soldiers and sailors opposed to the colonial wars in Africa out of the country, in 1971 by the fascist dictator Antonio de Oliveira Salazar.
It is said that converts to a religion can be more zealous than those born into a religion. Perhaps the same applies to people who did not get to grow up in Ocean Beach but have moved here and won’t go away. I may not be a native OBecian but I sure think OB is fantastic and it isn’t just the ocean, good bars and dog beach. It’s the OB attitude that makes everything else so good.
HOBBIES: writing and body surfing
FAVORITE SAN DIEGAN: Tony Gwynn
FAVORITE BURRITO: Nico’s bean/cheese/potatoes
OB YEARS: 27
Christine Schanes, J.D., Ph.D., is a consultant and public educator in the area of homelessness. Christine is director of two departments within Nos Amis/Our Friends, Inc.: (1) the new Center for Justice and Social Compassion and (2) Children Helping Poor and Homeless People , co-founded by Christine and her two children, Chrissy, age 8, and Patrick, age 6 over twenty years ago. Today, CHPHP is a nationally recognized educational outreach program conducted by children and teens with adult advisors that encourages direct service.
Matthew Wood moved to Ocean Beach from Chicago, where he lived for 13 years while working at the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, AOL CityGuide and The Heckler. He covers the Padres for NBC7 San Diego and has a personal blog detailing his adventures from the Midwest to this crazy beach community. He has assimilated to the OB lifestyle by eating a lot of fish tacos and walking around barefoot. An avid sports fan originally from Ann Arbor, Mich., he is a huge supporter of University of Michigan athletics and Detroit sports teams. He personally apologizes for the Tigers beating the Padres in the ’84 World Series, but not too much.