Articles by dweisman

3 carpetbaggers infest the 50th Cong. District

As a 25-year veteran of California’s 50th Congressional District, we’ve seen a lot of the strangest political stuff possible. This ain’t your standard issue power to the people kind of place. It’s been more like a political cesspool represented by the worst bottom feeders imaginable. Think about it. Dear old Randy “Duke” Cunningham, top gun and top corruption felon, who parlayed his 50th stewardship into…


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 Like a bear breaking out of hibernation, every so often I like to trot out one of my favorite stories….


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…



Putting off the Ritz: Theater renovation stalls

A much ballyhooed church project to renovate and re-purpose the abandoned, and historic, Ritz Theater in downtown Escondido will be delayed. Considering the historic failures of numerous groups seeking to re-purpose this long-abandoned historic theater over the years, the question is will it even happen. Promoted prominently by Escondido’s then-mayor Sam Abed and his allies, New Vintage Church (NVC) received unanimous approval from Escondido council…


Ukulele Ray Christmas Ranch Sing-A-Long

Escondido’s Ukulele Ray was a man of many faces, many names and many talents, always entertaining and many time surprising. Scroll down the right sidebar and you’ll see one of his “Only in Esco” cartoons he drew for The Escondido Grapevine. Ray also drew the winter cartoon atop this story, which he captioned: “Harry didn’t always dress like ‘The Grimace!’ We moved to Escondido, so…


CVS naughty, not nice, with recyclable cans

You know all those recycling containers situated just outside CVS store around town? Ever tossed a bottle or can in one of them, or otherwise tried to dispose of them at your local pharmacy? Surprise! The California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) today announced a $3.6 million enforcement action against CVS Health Corp. for failing to meet its obligation to redeem Californians’ deposits…



Follow the money: Joel Anderson edition

(Editor’s note: Oh, what a long, strange trip it’s been for former state Sen. Joel Anderson who, like Old Man River, keeps running for political office while playing fast and loose with campaign finance laws, along. Ten years ago, according to the San Diego Union Tribune Monday, November 4, when he was a state assemblyman from La Mesa, Joel Anderson was the subject of an…


Looking back at Del’s Barber Shop

Like father like son like grandson, Del’s Barber Shop is old school and proud of it. “It’s pretty much the same old barber shop,” said Jason Engelbrecht, now large and in charge of the 4-barber shop on S. Escondido Boulevard next to Lourdes Restaurant and its famous chicken soup. “We try not to change anything.” One would be hard-pressed to find another blast from the…