Articles by dweisman

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…


North County Congressional Town Hall killed

Much-ballyhooed and sold out within hours of announcement, the All North County Congressional Town Hall scheduled for March 19 at MiraCosta College Concert Hall, Oceanside was cancelled abruptly Friday afternoon. Rep. Duncan Hunter, (R-50th Congressional District) and Rep. Mike Levin (D-49th Congressional District) were scheduled to attend the 2-hour evening event primarily arranged by the San Diego North Economic  Development Council. Additional sponsors included the…


Olga Diaz addresses Jay Petrek questions

After six weeks of trying to get answers about Escondido Assistant Manager Jay Petrek’s appointment to the San Marcos City Council, Escondido Councilwoman Olga Diaz sent answers to The Grapevine on Thursday, Feb. 28. That leaves Escondido Mayor Paul McNamara, Deputy Mayor Consuelo Martinez and council members John Masson and Michael Morasco to go. Thank you. As the Washington Post states on its masthead: “Democracy Dies…


Rep. Duncan Hunter tries to remain relevant

Indicted for campaign finance fraud and awaiting a September federal court trial, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-50th District, CA.) does what he can to remain relevant. Although he has been banished from congressional committees, and doesn’t respond to non-conservative media outlets, Hunter has continued to make controversial comments and stands, take questionable donations and make suspect re-election campaign expenditures. Hunter is scheduled to make a rare…


Flower Fields blooming business through May

The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch opened Friday The final day? It’s always Mother’s Day, which is May 12 in 2019. El Nino rain in February should mean magnificent Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch blooms now in session through May 12. Mellano & Company of San Luis Rey is the production arm and onsite grower. The Ecke family owns the land. Over 50 acres are devoted to…


California Pacific Airlines says it will rise again

Like the Black Knight in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” who kept on fighting despite being torn apart limb by limb, California Pacific Airlines chief Ted Vallas said Tuesday his troubled 10-year airline project would fly again “within three months.” California Pacific Airlines flew for one month last year, incurred large debts, grounded its airplane, left employees without payments, got kicked out of the…


That happened. News you may have missed

This week promises a new overload. Michael Cohen testifies for three days before Congress, including a public Wednesday slam-fest. Donald Trump goes on formerly busted heel spurs to Hanoi to hold another fake summit with the evil murderous North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. Congress will pass a resolution blocking Trump’s fake national emergency. It goes to the Senate. Former national security advisors from across…


Meet the new San Diego border barrier, just behind the old San Diego border barrier

It’s kind of like a bait-and-switch along 14 miles of San Diego border barrier, or maybe similar to the new and improved status sometimes awarded to reconstituted cereal brands. Or call it peaches, as President Trump said for all he cared in early January. You know how some people double wrap leftover food. Using previously allocated border funds, the Trump Administration was double-wrapping the border…


Tracking the wild parrots of San Diego County

Seen a wild pandemonium of parrots lately? Report it immediately. That’s the question and request posed by University of San Diego Biology Instructor Dr. Janel Ortiz and her San Diego Parrot Project, along  with “parrot sighting submission form” and a hardy SDPP thank you. Ortiz took the academic show on the road Wednesday. That’s when she and her flock of students took flight with a…


Urban farming comes to the Bay Area

During the partial federal shutdown in December 2018 and January 2019, news reports showed furloughed government workers standing in line for donated meals. These images were reminders that for an estimated one out of eight Americans, food insecurity is a near-term risk. In California, where I teach, 80 percent of the population lives in cities. Feeding the cities of the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area,…