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Volume 15, Number 11

Shoppers rest by the clock tower at the Westfield UTC shopping mall center court.

Courtesy of Westfield UTC

Shopping expert provides tips on navigating

Westfield UTC the day after Thanksgiving


Black Friday can be a shopper's paradise, a challenge or downright ominous.

That's why Adrienne Bergeron, marketing director for Westfield UTC shopping mall, wants to make the Black Friday experience less daunting for those in the latter category. Her tips and tricks help even the most novice shopper navigate UTC Mall on the busiest shopping day of the year.

Get ready

Plan. Plan. Plan. Before even stepping foot onto the UTC grounds, Bergeron


Black Friday events

Food and Fashion Friday, noon to 3 p.m. at Center Court by the poinsettia tree, featuring a runway show, beauty makeovers, children's showcase, food demonstrations and samples

Shutterfly calendar/poster giveaway, through Dec. 31 at the concierge booth. Get a free, customizable 16inch by 20-inch calendar or poster from Shutterfly with the purchase of a Westfield gift card of $50 or more.

Whether you're young, silver-aged or shop-

ping for the kids, local village and Bird Rock

fashionistas share tips on what to wear as

the weather cools.

See page 10.

Thomas Levy, a UCSD professor of anthropology and Judaic studies, stands in a remote area

of Jordan, where he pioneered three highly sophisticated digging excavations, which was the

topic of a Nov. 23 documentary on PBS.

Photo courtesy of NOVA/National Geographic Television

UCSD professor uncovers clues

that King Solomon's mines existed


The existence of King Solomon has been a topic of debate and intrigue for countless researchers and treasure-seekers, and an anthropologist at the University of California, San Diego has uncovered evidence suggesting that the ancient king's splendid, copper- and gold-adorned palaces -- as described in the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) -- may very well have existed.

Thomas Levy, a UCSD professor of anthropology and Judaic studies, has pioneered three highly sophisticated digging excavations in an area called Khirbat enNahas, located in southern Jordan. His efforts attracted the attention of NOVA/National Geographic Television, which sent a crew to Jordan with him last

fall. The resulting documentary about Levy's findings, "NOVA: Quest for Solomon's Mines," aired Nov. 23 on PBS.

Levy, also the associate director of the Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology (CISA3), wasn't looking for King Solomon's mines at first. He was actually researching the role of ancient technology on the evolution of society. But what he found in Jordan was groundbreaking -- thousands of tons of slag, a byproduct of smelting ore, and different types of blowpipes (bellows) used to heat the ore. Using the process of radiocarbon dating, his team discovered there was industrial-scale metal production of copper precisely in 10th century B.C.



Local historian tells the story of La Jolla's "great wall." See page 6 CLAIRE HARLIN | Village News





People in the news

? Pamela Maher, Ph.D, a senior staff scientist in the Salk Cellular Neurobiology Laboratory, led a team of researchers in the disPamela Maher covery that fisetin, a natural compound found in some fruits and vegetables, slows the onset of symptoms associated with Huntington's disease, an inherited disorder caused by a genetic repetition that destroys neurons in parts of the brain. The team's findings showed that when fisetin was fed to fruit flies with mutant Huntingtin genes in the brain, they had fewer motor defects, such as impaired eye development, and extended their life spans by 30 percent. Although fisetin does not reverse or stop progress of the disease, especially in its advanced stages, Maher's team found that the compound may slow the progression of motor problems such as the inability to walk, talk and reason in the early stages of the disease. Maher and her team's findings were published in the online edition of Human Molecular Genetics. The effects of fisetin in humans with Huntington's disease has not yet been tested; however, Maher and her team's findings lay the groundwork for future research on fisetin's benefits for patients with early signs of the disease.

degree in marketing from the University of South West Louisiana in 1973 and received his Society of Industrial and Office Realtors Hank Antis (SIOR) designation in 1999. He began his real estate career in 1984 at Latter & Blum, specializing in industrial real estate brokerage. In 2005, Antis became vice president of the San Diego Industrial Division of The Trammell Crow Company, and in 2009 he formed H. Antis Real Estate, Inc., specializing in tenant/purchaser representation.

? Ira Flatow, radio host for NPR's

weekly science talk show "Science Fri-

day," won the 10th annual Nierenberg

Prize for Science in the Public Interest

from the University of California, San

Diego's Scripps Institution of Oceanog-

raphy. He accepted his

award at the Scripps

Seaside Forum on Nov.

16. The prize, named

in honor of William A.

Nierenberg, who led

Ira Flatow

Scripps for 21 years, awards people who

bring excitement and

awareness of scientific advancements

to the public. Flatow has been a jour-

nalist for 40 years. During that time,

he has interviewed some of the world's

most renowned scientists, including pri-

matologist Jane Goodall, neurologist

Oliver Sacks and Charles David Keel-

ing, father of the Keeling Curve.

in Healthcare Management, is the

senior director of marketing and

communications at

Scripps Health Care in

La Jolla and has more

than 15 years of expe-

rience in strategic

planning and market-

Suzi Bustamante

ing and communications initiatives.

Goldberg served on

the board of directors

in the late 1990s as

well as the board of

the International

Forum of Corporate

Directors. He has also

David Goldberg

volunteered for the La Jolla Historical Society's Finance Commit-

tee and currently serves on the board

of directors of the Save Our Heritage

Organization (SOHO).

? Joan Brown Kearney, a La Jolla Debutante Committee member, recently announced the receipt of a poster from the Navy Seal Team as "thank-you" for a Mother's Day brunch that the committee hosted for 600 family members of deployed servicemen and servicewomen. The brunch took place in May at the Hotel Del Coronado in lieu of the committee's semi-annual ball. The La Jolla Debutante Committee has generated $2 million dollars over the years, which has been distributed to various children's charities in San Diego.

? Hank Antis has joined Lee & Associates, the largest broker-owned firm in the nation, as a senior associate for the San Diego UTC office. Antis, a New Orleans native, earned his bachelor's

? La Jolla Historical Society has elected Suzi Bustamante and David Goldberg to serve on the society's Board of Directors.

Bustamante, who holds an MBA

The La Jolla Village News invites to you share your stories of outstanding La Jollans. Please send bios and photos to ljvn@.


Amanda Marie Cropper and Devin Jai Burstein wed in La Jolla Cove on Nov. 6.


Town Council trustee weds at La Jolla Cove

Amanda Marie Cropper and Devin Jai Burstein were married on Saturday, Nov. 6, at Scripps Park in La Jolla Cove. The bride is the daughter of Dana and Greg Gomez of Hawaii. The groom is the son of John and Chrissy Burstein of Maine and June Burstein of New York City.

Accompanied by an acoustic rendition of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," the bride was presented by her father and met by her sisters, Brandi and Sabrina, and seven bridesmaids. The groom was presented by his mother and met by his brother, Luke, and eight grooms-

men. The seals remained politely silent. A reception was held on the rooftop of La Jolla Cove Suites, where 120 guests witnessed an epic sunset.

The bride is a graduate of San Diego State University and a local yoga instructor. The groom, an attorney at Federal Defenders of San Diego and a trustee of the La Jolla Community Planning Association, is a graduate of New York University and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University. The newlyweds reside at Windansea with their dog, Sammy.

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La Jolla activist awarded for 60 years of dedication


For La Jolla resident Gracia Molina de Pick, serving those who suffer from discrimination and poverty is a family duty. Her mother had eight sisters who were all involved in the women's suffrage movement in Mexico and her greatest mentor, Aunt Elena, was a close friend of internationally heralded artist, pacifist and feminist Frida Kahlo.

All these influential loved ones passed the torch to Pick, 80, who was recently honored as a local hero for her 60-year commitment as an educator, feminist, student mentor and community activist. In conjunction with Hispanic and American Indian Heritage month celebrations, KPBS and Union Bank presented her with the award Nov. 16 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla.

Her activism for women's equality, indigenous communities, and labor and immigrants' rights has culminated in progressive and concrete milestones.

Molina de Pick founded IMPACT, a community grassroots organization fighting for Mexican-American civil rights, and Comision Femenil Mexicana Nacional, the first national feminist Chicana Association. She has also been a chairwoman of both the National Women's Political Caucus, a grassroots organization dedicated to increasing women's participation in politics, and the National Council of La Raza, the largest national Latino civil rights organization in America. She organized Chicana participation in the U.N. World Conferences on Women, and she has also published a book that highlights women in the indigenous period in Mexican history. The book is titled "Mujeres en la Historia y Historias de Mujeres."

"There are only two ways to change things in society -- one is by the vote; one is by the gun," Molina de Pick said.

Her passion for peace, equality and justice

Tom Karlo, general manager of KPBS, presents

an award to Gracia Molina Enriquez de Pick at

the 13th annual Local Heroes Awards program,

held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in La

Jolla on Nov. 16. She was honored for her work

as an educator, professor of Chicano/a studies

and women's rights activist.


runs deep in her veins, and her activism began at a young age.

In high school, Molina de Pick was involved in post-World War II peace movements and political efforts to get women the right to vote in national Mexican elections. By 16, she founded and led the youth section of the Partido Popular, the only political party at the time that advocated women's voting rights.

After moving to San Diego with her husband, Richard, in 1957, Molina de Pick continued to emphasize the importance of voting rights and education in creating peace.

Within a few years in San Diego, Molina de Pick saw the oppression of the Hispanic population in schools where she worked, such as National City Junior High, where 70 percent of

her students were Hispanic and undereducated. Many of her Hispanic students were even placed in mentally disabled classes because they did not speak English.

From that point on, Molina de Pick became instrumental in educational reform in San Diego. She founded and wrote the curricula for the first associate's degree in Chicano/a Studies at Mesa College -- the first degree of its kind in the country at a community college. In 1970, she became a founding faculty member of the University of California, San Diego's Thurgood Marshall College.

"There has been a tremendous amount of change, but communities are still segregated," she said.

She continues to push for educational programs, such as MANA, formerly the Comision Femenil Mexicana Nacional, which she helped establish.

Among the many generous contributions that she has made to educational reform in the San Diego community, the most incredible is saving the Logan Heights Library by draining her own bank account.

"I gave the last of my money that I had in liquid, $80,000, to the Logan Heights Library," she said. "I believe in libraries, I live in the library and I wanted a library in the barrio."

To contribute further, the La Jollan held her 80th birthday in the library and asked for donations to the fund in lieu of personal gifts. Additions to the library's endowment fund totaled more than $6,000 that day.

Her spirit, generosity and passion has been such an inspiration that Jan. 12, 2010 was designated Gracia Molina de Pick Day in San Diego.

Molina de Pick said she intends to move back to Tequisquipan, Mexico, where she has a small home, and continue her activist efforts there. Her next project is to begin a scholarship fund to help students buy textbooks for school.


Man pleads guilty to robbing three Chase banks

Primitivo Martinez, 50, has pleaded guilty to robbing the La Jolla Chase Bank and two other banks, and he faces up to 19 years in prison when he is sentenced on Jan. 6 in San Diego Superior Court.

Martinez, who is also known as Mario Bilba, said he robbed the bank on Villa La Jolla Drive on Aug. 30. He also admitted to holding up two other Chase Bank branches in Bonita and Scripps Ranch. He showed tellers a note which read "put money in bag, no red dye."

Court records reveal Martinez was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon in July, and has other prior records dealing with burglary, receiving stolen property and possession of illegal drugs. The plea form Martinez signed states the maximum sentence is 90 years.

Judge Theodore Weathers indicated he would limit the prison sentence to no more than 19 years. Martinez does not have a plea agreement with the Office of the District Attorney.

Martinez was arrested last month and remains in the South Bay Detention Facility without bail.

-- Neal Putnam

La Jolla Shores breaks ground on lifeguard station, parking lot

District 1 City Councilwoman Sherri Lightner, Mayor Jerry Sanders, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department Chief Javier Mainar and city staff hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Nov. 22 at Kellogg Park in La Jolla Shores to showcase the construction of new projects on the La Jolla Shores lifeguard station and Kellogg Park parking lot.

A state-of-the-art 1,485-square-foot lifeguard station will replace the existing facility to enhance the safety of beachgoers in the area, improve lifeguard staff safety and maximize views from the park by moving the station closer to the parking lot,






Walking for a cause

An artists' rendition shows one of the 108 private rooms that will be featured in the new 383,000-square-foot tower that would, if approved, replace the existing Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla in June. In-patient room amenities include wireless Internet access, plasma-screen televisions and pullout couches for overnight stays.

Photo courtesy of Scripps

Scripps reveals high-tech

expansion for La Jolla hospital


Scripps Health unveiled Nov. 17 its $2 billion master plan to build three new hospital towers over the next 25 years to replace the existing Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla. If approved, the 43acre comprehensive medical campus would include research and graduate medical education facilities, an outpatient treatment center and medical offices.

The first tower, a $398 million, eight-story, 383,000-square-foot tower, would break ground in June and is scheduled to open for patient care in 2015. The tower would become the hub of the Scripps Cardiovascular Institute, featuring 108 inpatient beds in private rooms, 60 intensive-care beds, six state-of-the-art operating rooms, cardiac catheterization labs, centralized cardiovascular research lab, and a center for graduate medical education.

Medical and surgical treatments in the new hos-

pital would incorporate the latest technologies including robotic surgery, digital monitoring and record keeping, wireless technology and high-tech operating rooms. In-patient room amenities include wireless Internet access, plasma-screen televisions and pullout couches for overnight stays.

The towers' state-of-the-art building designs will incorporate green building principles and practices such as large expanses of windows to take advantage of natural light, water- and energy-saving devices and a "green" roof in at least one of the building's three towers.

Funding for the hospital's expansion will come from operating revenues, borrowing and community support. Thus far, $32 million of its $125 million fundraising goal for the first tower has been contributed in the form of philanthropic gifts.

The Scripps Health master plan has been submitted to the City Council and is currently under review.

Pink-haired supporters slap five with Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer 3-Day Walkers along La Jolla Shores on Nov. 19.

DON BALCH | Village News

A young girl at La Jolla Shores holds up one of many signs of support for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer 3-Day Walkers on Nov. 19.

DON BALCH | Village News







"It would have been like the Pittsburg of Palestine," said Levy.

There are two sides to the King Solomon debate, he said. First, there are those who "minimize the historicity of the Old Testament, saying there was no Solomon because during the 10th century there were no societies capable of creating a kingdom -- only petty nomads." On the other side, there are those who maximize the content of the Old Testa-

ment, he said. "We don't have proof that we have

found Solomon's mines, but what we have proof of is that there were kingdoms in 10th century," said Levy. "I think he existed."

Levy has been digging in the remote area of Jordan since 2002 with a Jordanian colleague, Mohammad Najjar, and National Geographic found out about his work in 2008 when he published an article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal.

"They got really excited about the work, and when they contacted me, I

said, `If you want to do the story you have to come out to Jordan and fund our work so we can finish the expedition,'" said Levy. "I told them there's no hotels out there; you have to live in a tent with us."

Levy said his crew of about 40 graduate and undergraduate students recreate the CISA3 lab in the middle of the desert, which they drive to every morning at 5 a.m. in four-wheel-drive vehicles. They generally stay abroad for two and a half months.

Students get class credit for the adventure, said Levy, adding that "it's well deserved."



said, one should check out the mall's online resources for the latest and greatest bargains.

"Check out our Facebook page. We update it every day with new promotions," Bergeron said. To see daily updates from UTC Westfield, visit westfieldutc.

Current promotions include a chance to win a $200 Godiva gift basket when shoppers submit their best photo eating a free Godiva truffle sample and a free customizable Shutterfly calendar with the purchase of Westfield gift cards valued at $50 or more.

To be even more prepared, visit the mall's website, utc, and map out store locations based on the website's directory to effortlessly navigate through the chaos. The site also offers store hours, dining, directions and more offers and events.

Tech-savvy iPhone, iPod or iPad users can also download a free Westfield app from the Apple's iTunes App Store to have a virtual shopping assistant in the UTC maze. The app's interactive features include a GPSguided map for driving directions to UTC, a digital rendering of the shopping center, real-time updates from the UTC Facebook page and a personalized walking route based on individual shopping lists.

Those who are overwhelmed by the prospect of spending all day shopping can save time by hiring a personal shopper. Macy's and Nordstrom department stores offer personal shopping services to help people hone

in on the perfect gifts for loved ones during the holidays. To schedule an appointment, call Macy's at (858) 453-2060 or Nordstrom at (858) 457-4575.

Get set

"The lovely thing about UTC is that there is plenty of parking anywhere," said Bergeron. "Sears [parking] is a little more open. It's the main entrance right into the fashion wing," she said.

"We also offer preferred family parking next to Pottery Barn Kids," she said. The additional 20 parking spaces created last month are intended for families with young children and expectant mothers to ease parents' shopping experience.

For families, getting set for Black Friday involves more than just parking. To set children up for the day, the Sears and Macy's wings offer self-service Smarte Cartes in race-car and fire truck-themed strollers to keep children comfortable while adults shop.


Shopping, that is. Doors open at 8 a.m., and some of the best deals happen in the morning before items get picked over. Arrive with ample time to take advantage of the hottest items at the best prices and then shop `til you drop.

The place to be for a little R&R after an exhausting day of shopping is center court, where hungry shoppers can refuel on food samples while watching the latest seasonal trends in a fashion presentation including a runway show, beauty makeovers and a children's showcase from noon to 3 p.m.

"You can power-shop in the morning and head over to the center court area, take a break and see the hottest fashion trends and best gift ideas from retailers like Godiva, Ben & Jerry's, Cozymel's and Red Robin," Bergeron said.

Westfield UTC is also offering fashion-forward shoppers a chance to win a $500 Westfield American Express gift card by being the most stylish shopper in the mall.

Also in center court is a Black Friday shopper's home base -- the concierge booth. The concierge can help with shopping needs such as disability services, dinner reservations, hotel referrals, foreign language assistance, gift suggestions, lost-andfound and transportation assistance. To access the concierge services from anywhere in the mall, call (858) 5468858 between 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

A pet- and kid-friendly Santa will also be available to hear wish lists and pose for a commemorative photo in the Sears wing by Children's Playtown. For restless kids, Children's Playtown is a great place for youngsters to release some energy while parents relax in one of the many couches in the area.

For those who spent all day shopping and still have not found that perfect gift, stop by the concierge booth for a last-minute winner.

"Westfield American Express gift cards are the best gifts for anyone during the holidays," Bergeron suggests.

UTC Westfield is located at 4545 La Jolla Village Drive. Stores will close at 7 p.m. For more information, visit utc or call (858) 546-8858.

Former Country Day JV volleyball

coach sentenced to six years

Xia Wei Li ordered to

register as sex offender

and will be deported


A former La Jolla Country Day School girls volleyball coach was sentenced Nov. 16 to six years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of performing a lewd act upon a 12-year-old girl who attended a volleyball camp where the coach was also working.

Probation was denied for Xia Wei Li, 29, of Pacific Beach by San Diego Superior Court Judge Theodore Weathers, who fined him $1,574. Li was given credit for 120 days already served in jail.

The parents of the girl told the judge "in private, our little girl spent many hours sobbing" and has weekly therapy sessions. They described her as "a gullable adolescent" who has since had two nightmares.

"We learned that our bubbly, gangly girl had been seduced by her coach and molested in a manner that was cool, calculating and degrading," said the girl's mother.

The girl was molested July 21 at a July 19-22 camp sponsored by the

University of San Diego. The victim told her parents about the molestation on July 25, and it was reported to San Diego police.

Deputy District Attorney Dan Link said reports of the incident have "rocked" the coaching world.

"The acts of this man have affected so many," said Link, who urged an 8-year prison term.

Li's attorney, Court Will, said Li has coached many minors and this is the first instance of misconduct. He urged a lesser sentence and no more than three years.

"I am not a bad person, but I'm a person who made a bad choice in a very dark moment of my life," said Li, who wore a blue jumpsuit. "I am very sorry.

Weathers said Li "took advantage of a position of trust." The judge ordered Li to register as a sex offender for life. After he finishes his sentence, Li will be deported to China as he was not in the United States legally.

Li was arrested Aug. 4 outside his residence on Oliver Street. Li was the junior varsity girls volleyball coach at La Jolla Country Day School starting in 2007, and was scheduled to coach this season.

The mother said she hopes Li will "repent of his sins and be a better man."



said city officials. The new station will include an observation tower with a 270-degree view, a modern first-aid room, male and female locker rooms, administration areas and a staff ready room.

City officials said the Kellogg Green Lot Infiltration Project will improve environmental protection of the area by replacing 18,000 square feet of asphalt with permeable pavers. The renovation will prevent stormwater and urban surface runoff from entering and damaging the marine diversity and potential for public use and research in the La Jolla Shores and the Scripps areas.

For more information, contact the city's Engineering and Capital Projects Department at (619) 533-4207, or visit engineering@.

-- Mariko Lamb

UCSD to build new research facility

The University of California, San Diego was given the go-ahead to construct a new Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI) building on UCSD's La Jolla campus.

The UC Board of Regents accepted the proposed budget and financing for the building, which is projected to cost $269 million.

In a recent statement, Gary S. Firestein, professor of medicine and director of CTRI, said, "The CTRI building will create a unique multidisciplinary environment that brings together laboratory scientists and clinical investigators to understand disease, develop new methods of treatment and translate clinical research results into clinical practice."

The building, which will be located near Thornton Hospital and Moores Cancer Center, is scheduled to be completed in 2016.

-- Kendra Hartmann





La Jolla's `great wall' offers a view of community's history

RReefflleeccttiioonnss By Carol Olten

Rock walls may seem like a boring subject, but one in La Jolla deserves particular attention because it is somewhat of an enigma and is definitely a historical curiosity.

The wall is located on Coast Boulevard at the foot of Cuvier Street on the back side of the La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art. Reaching 400 feet long and standing 21 feet in height at its tallest point, it is built of smoothly worn rocks gathered from the beach. Standing above it on the adjacent Coast Boulevard sidewalk, one is afforded beautiful ocean views of the north shore toward Oceanside and, more immediately, a fine, sandy little beach with some intriguing rock formations, including one frequently photographed piece of topography the ocean has carved out over the years to look like a bench.

People often stop to enjoy these views and the wall itself has become a popular spot for rock climbers to test their abilities. Surfers have named the little beach "Wipe Out" for obvious reasons.

Now for the curious stuff. For a while there was a legend of a La Jolla doll lady who made little shrines in the wall's niches to place some of her precious toys. The wall originally had 50 niches for lights set eight feet apart as beacons for boats and ships at sea. The lights were removed during the blackouts of World War II and almost all of the niches were filled in. It seems nobody has thought about restoring the lights over the years.

Taken sometime between 1908 and 1910, this photo, which is part of the La Jolla Historical Society's postcard collection, shows the wall located at the intersection of Coast Boulevard and Cuvier Street being built. The wall is about 400 feet long and 21 feet tall at its highest point. Courtesy of the La Jolla Historical Society.

And now for the real enigma. How and when did La Jolla's "great wall" get there? A postcard in the La Jolla Historical Society archives shows the wall in the process of being built. The estimated date written on the back is 1908-1910. A wood frame has been constructed where the wall is to be built in the postcard picture and three men are standing at the bottom of the cliff on a large pile of rocks as if looking ahead to long days of labor.

When the rock wall was built circa 1910, it prevented erosion and provided protection for the largest and grandest house in La Jolla at the time ? Ellen Browning Scripps' revered South Moulton Villa that stood atop the hill where the present-day museum is located. Scripps probably had the wall built herself or provided funding to build it. True to her native British heritage,

she had a predilection for cobble walls and her property was defined by the stone walls surrounding it -- stretching along Coast Boulevard from Cuvier Street to Eads Avenues, up Eads to Prospect Street, and from Prospect back to Cuvier. Many of those walls remain intact and the La Jolla Historical Society is working toward their preservation.

The landmark rock wall by the ocean has retained its character over the years. Standing over it, walking along the sidewalk by it and enjoying the views around it have provided pleasure to many over many years ? the wall is around 100 years old.

The last few months, the wall has brought special enjoyment to myself and my one-year-old dog, who is able to jump on his hind legs, put his front paws on top of the wall's ledge and look out

Carol Olten, historian at the La Jolla Historical

Society, stops to let her one-year-old Samoyed

"Jingles" observe the La Jolla Cove from the 400-

foot-long wall on Coast Boulevard. Olten estimates

the wall was built in 1910 or earlier by Ellen Brown-

ing Scripps.

CLAIRE HARLIN | Village News

over the ocean. He does so every day, straining at the leash until we arrive at the spot. He closely observes everything in sight from the ledge, sometimes for as long as five minutes -- and believe me, that's a long, concentrated effort for a Samoyed.

-- Carol Olten is the historian at the La Jolla Historical Society.


With sinceri-tea

In regard to "Outstanding volunteers, dedicated women and fine wines," (Nov. 11 edition, page 10), I wanted to thank you for the wonderful article you wrote about the Salvation Army Women of Dedication Presentation Tea. The article truly captured the event and honored these special ladies! Thank you so much!

Nancie Geller La Jolla

Carl DeMaio's economic chaos

The citizens of America's finest city should be uncomfortable and embarrassed with Councilman Carl DeMaio's proposed budget gimmicks. He seeks to balance the budget by impoverishing the families of hardworking public employees. Seven of his eight proposals punish city workers for the recent sales-tax increase defeat, rather than the politicians and the investment lobbyists who created this budgetary mess in the first place.

For years, the prevailing notions of

neo-liberalism and its market-based control of government, from privatization to paying non-livable wages, was tied to the casino-like gambling of Wall Street. Those who would dismantle community government sell the commons to the highest bidder and send most workers into destitution never talk about how over reliance on the stock market really got us in this economic chaos. Just this year alone, the pension fund has lost tens of millions of dollars on investments.

As a community, we need to look at ending corporate welfare, like the Centre City Development Corporation and our subsidies to ballparks, hotels and other "private" ventures; the mayor's office and the City Council should look at cutting six-figure consultants and lobbyists on the public dole; and we should look toward revising our pitiful services fees for wealthy developers and well-heeled speculators, rather than raiding the paychecks of the honest people who toil day-in and dayout to make this such a fine city.

DeMaio and others have made the gardener who tends wonderful Balboa

Park, the gal who picks up our trash, the superb receptionist who answers our inquiries, the enemy -- the bad person -- the scapegoat for this city dependence over dependence on the market economy for its economic security. DeMaio's plan for restructuring the city's pension fund only treats the symptom not the ailment.

Rocky Neptun Director, San Diego Renters Union

Are three councilmembers better than one?

Your letters column ("Where do you draw the line?" Nov. 18 edition, page 6) illustrates the importance of how we draw political district boundaries. The editor and one reader review a major consideration in the redistricting process -- whether La Jolla should be in one district or two. It's presently in two. There are advantages to both situations.

By choice, City Heights straddles three districts and might want to continue that. In contrast, many members of the lesbian gay bisexual transgender (LGBT) communities were put

together into one district (District 3) in the 2001 process.

You might not be aware of that or the reasoning for it. The Village News might want to study and consider the two approaches to district boundaries.

The LGBT communities wanted to control the choice of at least one councilmember, so preferred having their strength massed into a single district. They chose Toni Atkins in the 2002 election and Todd Gloria in 2010. They thought such an arrangement would better advance them and their causes. I was not then and still am not convinced, but they seemed to know what they wanted and my neighbors in City Heights supported them. I myself strongly supported them too, and I'll support them again to reach their political goals.

City Heights had a different view of the political landscape. Poor and illeducated, it looks at politics much more pragmatically. In 2001, it realized that five council votes make a majority. It reckoned that getting to five votes would be easier if it started with three than if it started with only one. Upon that reasoning, it lobbied

for boundaries that gave it access to three councilmembers.

It is now partly in districts 3, 4 and 7, with constituency status and strong neighborhood spokespeople in all three districts. On the whole, that was a good tactic for us.

The editor's note to the letter "City needs to advertise redistricting position," (Page 6, Nov. 18) and reader Gillian Ackland's letter introduce what I discussed just above: two approaches to redistricting. The Village News might want to review the two and discuss them within its staff and with its readers before it takes an editorial position.

We acknowledge that many of our neighbors in City Heights are poor or poorly informed. Others are ill-educated or speak an exotic language, but we aren't stupid. We understand politics. We know what's good for us, we're well organized and we're pretty successful at getting our way. Our good friends in La Jolla, whom we admire, whose well-being and political choices we support, might take a lesson from us.

Jim Varnadore City Heights



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