January 2018

‘Lord of All Indoors’ soccer legend Steve Zungul lives quietly in Escondido retirement

Reclusive and sitting in a luxury home high above the San Pasqual Valley, the charismatic  “Lord of All Indoors” Steve Zungul continues to mystify and impress, albeit out of the public eye. He hasn’t spoken to anybody in the media for over a decade. His legendary indoor soccer career continues to do all the talking. Fans of the Croatian indoor soccer scoring machine, perhaps the…


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,…


John Elway sent me to the Pro Bowl

John Elway sent me to the Pro Bowl. Guess who is my favorite all-time NFL player. The Pro Bowl generally is a laid-back affair, past and future, played for most of its years at Aloha Stadium. It features special rules such as no blitzing, no zone defenses, no trick offensive formations. The 2018 Pro Bowl is today, Sunday, Jan. 28 at Orlando for the second year in the…


Vila, the gorilla, dead at age 60

One of the world’s oldest gorillas died Thursday at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Vila was the matriarch of five generations and served as a surrogate mother for several hand-raised western lowland gorillas, according to the zoo. She celebrated her 60th birthday in October, becoming the world’s second oldest gorilla. “Vila touched many people throughout her lifetime,” said Randy Rieches, curator of mammals at…


California highway safety laws best in US

Amid a resurgence in U.S. traffic fatalities now taking roughly 100 lives a day, an advocacy group today issued a report card identifying states that do the most, and least, to improve highway safety. The ratings by Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety credited six states — California, Oregon, Washington, Louisiana, Delaware and Rhode Island—with having the most protective road safety laws. The safety group…


Local flu deaths up, worst may be over

The number of flu deaths reported in San Diego County reached a new high, while at the same time lab-confirmed cases went down again, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced today. A total of 142 flu deaths have been reported through Jan. 13, 2018, the highest ever since the County began tracking fatalities about 20 years ago. The previous deadliest flu season was…


San Onofre Nuclear Plant ticking time bomb

What to do with the 3.6 million pounds of highly radioactive waste at San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station by Camp Pendleton remains an epic problem, pitting concerned citizens against Southern California Edison, the California Coastal Commission and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).  San Onofre’s seaside nuclear reactors were permanently shut down in 2013, following steam generator malfunction. Edison operates San Onofre while the Coastal Commission…


Coastal North County least diverse in area

Brian Pollard with the Urban Collaborative Project, a San Diego nonprofit, walks around a southeastern San Diego community where he says new residents have made once primarily African-American areas more diverse. (Megan Wood, inewsource) By the numbers: San Diego County’s most diverse neighborhoods When two residents in the southeastern San Diego neighborhood of Encanto meet, there’s a 71 percent chance they’re of different racial and…


‘This is what democracy looks like’

Somewhere over the Rainbow section of Interstate 15 Tuesday, Jan. 16, another nail in the political coffin of Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-50th Congressional District) went up in the form of a giant billboard reminding voters he is under criminal investigation. As several dozen Indivisible members and their endorsed candidate Ammar Campa-Najjar rallied, and passing motorists along Old Highway 395 honked vehicle horns in cacophonous support,…


California working, UC Berkeley report says

Between 2011 and 2016, California enacted a set of 51 policy measures addressing workers’ rights, environmental issues, safety net programs, taxation, and infrastructure and housing. Critics predicted that these policies—collectively called “the California Policy Model” (CPM) in this paper—would reduce employment and slow economic growth, while supporters argued that they would raise wages for low-wage workers, increase access to health insurance, lower wage inequality, and…