Monday, March 30, 2009
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Yesterday's wino wonderland at dba256 was big fun. The organizer (gotta think of a smartass pseudonym for him/her!) was worried that there wouldn't be enough people, but I gotta tell ya, Pomona Heritage rep-re-SENT!
Here's what we drank:
1. A sauvignon blanc from the Marlborough region of New Zealand (I didn't get the name).
2. A Santa Rita chardonnay from Chile.
3. A Barreto Cellars tempranillo from Lodi.
4. A Ventana merlot from the Arroyo Seco area of Monterey.
The wines were good, although I volunteer to help bargain on a price for future adventures, as it was rather overpriced. But it was great to see people I know and meet people I didn't. And of course I'm always eager to support a local business, even one with two @#$% TVs over the bar (hi, Ron!).
Oh, yeah, I took a pikkie. Don't worry, folks -- I actually braved the ever-daunting Photoshop to blur out the faces, so as not to violate folks' privacy. But I didn't blur out the evidence of a great time being had by all, I hope.
That was the Bartles & Jaymes part of the show; the Smith & Wesson part is, WHAT THE HECK IS UP WITH ALL THIS GUNFIRE?!?!?!? (Aren't you proud of me for saying "heck" instead of what I was really thinking?) Tonight is the third night this week I've heard the telltale pop!-pop!-pop! as I'm lolling on the couch of an evening. Does an economy down the crapper make people want to go shoot off a few rounds, and if so, why do it on Pearl Street instead of Wall Street?
Friday, March 27, 2009
Ed asked for more details about the PomHer event tomorrow, and while I am very much a fringe sort of character in Pomona Heritage, I am pals with the organizer (who is not John!), so I'll step up.
It's wine. Lots of it. At dba256. At 4pm. $14 gets you a sommelier-nurtured wine tasting, and there are rumors of horse-doovers. The downside is that the company might be a little low-rent, as K. and I are planning on being there. We can be counted on to bring crass behavior to any gathering. [K.: "Speak for yourself, darlin'."]
Glasshouse: Performances on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Diverse genre. It doesn't hurt to look, and who knows, you might be pleasantly surprised.
Antique Row: Collectors' Street Faire from 8AM-3PM
Art Colony: Last Saturday Art Walk starts at 6PM. Not just art, it also includes a Farmer's Market and Metro Night Out (couldn't find a good description, but you can always go to the website).
Fairplex: Prime Time Dance competition and on Sunday is the NowRooz Festival from 12-8PM
City of Pomona: Madison Park is being renamed Tony Cerda Park. Celebration runs from 10AM to 2PM. I'm in a hurry, so plug it into google maps yourself.
Geriatric Home Lovers: Grand re-opening of the Walker House in San Dimas. Last open house is scheduled for 3/28 from 10AM-2PM
Pomona Heritage is doing a social event, but I don't know whether I can broadcast it out. John? Anyone else?
Garfield Park neighborhood watch is getting together. Does the Lincoln Park group have similar meetings? The chainsaw probably scares them away, cuz I don't hear about them.
Cal Poly Pomona: Men's basketball team in Saturday's NCAA Division II finals at 1pm on CBS (channel 2).
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Old Home Restoration Workshop
Trinity United Methodist Church
Welcome and Opening Remarks
– Paula Lantz, Council Woman
– Deborah Clifford, President of
Start of Silent Auction
- Fellowship Hall - Steve Mittleider – City of
- Johnson Room Matt De’Fazio Tile and Design
- The Patio Neil Cannone Wood Refinishing
- The Choir Room Rembrandt Windows
o Caring for and Repairing Double Hung Windows
- Fellowship Hall Brad Hagbery BDH Plastering
- Small Room – Frank Simpson Drought Tolerant Landscape
- Patio - John Jones Wooden Screens Doors and Wooden Screens
Guest Speaker and Lunch –
Fairplex Speaker – Historical Gardens with Power Point Presentation
- Main Room Cool Tools Dan McIntire
- Small Room City of
- Main Room
- Small Room Tad Decker – Paint Bucket
- Patio William Korthof – Energy Efficiency Solar Panels
- Final Bids for Silent Auction –
Visit to Home in Progress –
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Tuesday @ 7PM in the City Council Conference Room
Agenda: "Is anyone Listening" Video, Freeway ramps at Garey and Towne, Home Beautification Contest, Citywide Beautification Day, Update on roles and responsibilities of Community Life Commission.
Wednesday @ 7PM in City Council Chambers
Agenda: CUP @ 1233 E. Kingsley to convert educational institution space into religious retreat center. Google Map
More activity in Community Life than Planning? Isn't that a sign of the times!
Sunday, March 22, 2009
But M-M-M-My Pomona is my bully pulpit, so I'll develop the point here, particularly in light of Anonymous's feeling that conversation was getting out of hand the other day.
I'll defend the value of real anonymous posting (or commenting). There's nothing unethical about people who really, truly want to remain a disembodied voice, drifting in from nowhere, speaking their piece, and vanishing again. They're not very persuasive, but that's their choice.
That's true for commenting, anyway. The fact is, it's pretty darn hard to post anonymously. Once you've made two or three blog posts, you start building a persona, and readers start engaging with that persona, forming opinions about it, imagining the human being behind it. And what's true for a multiple-authored blog like this one is doubly true if you start your own; sooner or later, you'll have to refer to yourself by some name, and then all hopes of anonymity are gone. Your persona has a name.
The take-away point here, I think, is that when we participate in an online community, we stake the reputations of our personas. Opponents of so-called anonymous blogging huff and puff about accountability, but all bloggers risk the good opinion of others when they post, regardless of the name they do it under.
The only form of accountability that pseudonymous bloggers avoid is the kind that allows irate jerks to accost them at their homes or offices -- the kind that encourages retribution in an unrelated sphere. If I'm bloviating on the web, I'm happy to put my web-cred on the line, but don't be calling my boss and trying to get me fired for something I said online (unless, of course, I've dooced myself). What happens online should stay online.
Meanwhile, to stand up and speak at City Council or one of the commission meetings, you have to announce your full address on local tv, essentially. I don't mind doing it myself, but I do wonder whether that's advisable. It just takes one contentious issue and one intempterate dirtbag to create a situation. It would probably be wiser to keep the house number on the speaker slip but not on the microphone.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Speaking of such things, I have pals in Claremont who keep chickens, and I know that it's pretty common in Pomona too. Does anyone know offhand the laws on chooks? In Claremont, you can only have hens -- roosters are streng verboten. Is that the case here too?
Thursday, March 19, 2009
If only I had a fax machine, I guess I could call and have them fax me the agenda. If only.....If only...
The old carbon-pusher can always be the last option. I'll let you know. Sorry, I never made it down to City Hall to grab the agenda.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
The Om Sweet Om Pilates & Yoga studio in Claremont is offering lots of free yoga and pilates classes as part of their open house (not quite as cool as the hot dogs at the F&H Tire open house, but perhaps worth a visit anywya). Here's a link the studio's website; the freebie class schedule appears in the bottom left corner of the page.
Note the kids' class on Sunday from 2 - 3 PM. That class will be taught by yours truly. Swing by and say hey.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
While the new fence ordinance was item 32 on the agenda, the earlier items went pretty quickly (for a large agenda meeting) and we took up the issue at about 9:00 pm. I had submitted my speaker's card and as soon as the item was announced by the city clerk I was asked to make my statement. I was a little confused as a public hearing is usually proceeded by a staff report on the item, then the public is asked to comment, then the council, then the vote. But it appears that because this item had been to two commissions and a study session that staff didn't feel that a presentation was necessary.
Fortunately, after the comments generated by Ed's original posting on this issue, I took the opportunity to familiarize myself with the report and we were on our way.
I made the arguments that a $500 fee for a major COA might create situations where, as in my own case which I highlighted, a fencing project might only cost $125 to construct, but the COA would boost that cost by over 4 times the amount. I argued that, while wanting to preserve the integrity of our historic neighborhoods, that such fees would actually cause individuals to not upgrade fences or to do them without permits and hope they don't get caught.
Public Participation: I, and Arturo Jimenez, who is on the planning commission and had similar conerns to ming, were the only speakers on the issue (where were you Gilman and Ed?). No reference was made to any written comments, so I don't know if the council had received any or not. I was somewhat surprised as the various comments on the previous posting, particularly by Gilman, warned us about being vigilant and participating.
In the end, the council decided to delete the requirement for a major COA in historic districts, and reduce it to a minor COA which can be done over the counter. Councilwoman Lantz asked that guidelines be created which clearly delineated the appropriate materials and styles for each housing style within the historic districts.
Chain Link: The new ordinance restricts the use of chain link to back yards. It not be permitted in front yards or in back or side yards that face a street. The ordinance states that you can't put in new chain link fencing, nor can you replace/repair chain link fencing of more than 50%. So a damaged chain link fence which requires less than 50% replacement can be repaired, but if a car runs down a chain link fence and it is more than 50% damaged, then it has to be either removed or replaced with appropriate fencing.
Councilwoman Soto asked that chain link be allowed in front yards for the next two to three years due to the problems with the economy, for families who want a place where their children can safely play. She was concerned that other fencing materials might be a financial burden in these troubled times. The rest of the council was not inclined to go along with that approach. Unfortunately, no one explained to Councilwoman Soto that Pomona has a "white picket fence" program which reimburses residents for front yard fencing (vinyl white picket fences), and those in need can get assistance. Councilwoman Carrizosa made a passing reference to it later in the meeting just before the vote.
Now to see what we can do about the major COA costs on tree removal.
Monday, March 16, 2009
I *L*O*V*E* foot massage parlors. $15 for a one-hour foot massage that -- quite surprisingly given the name of the service -- is a head-to-toe experience. We typically go to the joints in San Gabriel on Valley, but would be delighted to not have to drive in our post-massage lull.
So, this post is really more of a plea: Please let me know if you are privy to the whereabouts of this joint!
Not surprisingly, it is a full agenda.
- The zoning amendment for fences and walls will be up for its first hearing. I would encourage everyone to write their Council member and ask that this amendment get scaled back.
Saturday, March 14, 2009
I can't recall if I've posted about LaVerne's Corner Butcher Shop, but in any case they deserve some more press -- if for no other reason than that we want to make sure they keep a healthy business going in these tough times.
Yesterday K. was working from home, so we met up for lunch at CBS. They have specials every day, and yesterday's was a housemade hotdog and a Dale Brothers beer for $1.99. The dog, as K. kept saying afterwards, was the Platonic ideal of a hotdog. Me, I'm not sure that hotdogs get to have a Platonic form, but this was the best dog I've ever had (while still being undisputably a dog).
The cases at CBS are full of all kinds of amazing stuff, including a zillion kinds of sausage and the output of their smoking ovens. They're open till 8 on weekdays and 6 on weekends, so with a little planning you can swing by after work and pick up something nice -- no need to rely on the supermarket (and their questionable provenance). The seafood/fish case at CBS isn't large, but the selection changes every day, and everything I've tried was of top quality.
I have a new colleague who just moved here from the midwest. I namedropped various ethnic markets one too many times, and he asked me for a list of my sources. So, here are the ethnic places that I shop. Does anyone have others to add to the list, especially for the underrepresented cuisines?
El Super (cheap if not fabulous)
Upland Farmers Market (the best)
Basha (the furthest and biggest)
Grove Farmers Market (the nearest and worst)
What have I missed?
Friday, March 13, 2009
.........Where retailers go to sell off
over-stocked name brand merchandise for pennies on the dollar!! TVs,
digital cameras and camcorders, brand-name clothing and shoes,
kitchenware, lingerie, jewelry, art – it’s all here
Saturday and Sunday
$6 and park at gate #9
ASTV Thai Festival
Saturday in the Grandstand
Parking is at Gate #17
check out Pomona Art Colonists and Metro Pomona for more
info and to download a map of the art colony. Also A.S. Ashley
has a piece in the Daily Bulletin.
for quirky presents or a gift for that person
who has everything, I guarantee you can find
something at one of the shops. Our purchases
have ranged from Coca Cola tin trays
to living room furniture. We even framed
vintage newspaper ads.
Let's keep Pomona going by
supporting your local schools and businesses.
Although not Pomona, Ontario's Granada might be worth a stop tonight. The lack of vintage seating is a bummer, but tonight they'll be showing Singin' in the Rain, starting at 8PM (30 minutes of vintage comics starts at 7:30PM). ($3) Check out David Allen's article.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Other PUSD news: K-12 education is being reshaped in Pomona. The yesteryear formula of elementary, middle school, and then high school will now be competing with multiple PUSD schools offering K-8 education and two middle schools converting to 7-12 academies. Gee, a public school generation that will miss those warm and fuzzy middle (junior high) school years, how unfair is that.
A message from the PUSD website:
Grade-level reconfiguration meetings
Join us this week at a community meeting to find out more about the five new Pre-K-8 schools and two small academies serving grades 7-12 that are coming to our district this fall. Come to the meeting that's closest to you:
Wed., March 11, 6:00 pm: Fremont Middle School
725 W. Franklin Ave., Pomona
Thurs., March 12, 6:00 pm: Golden Springs Elementary
245 S. Ballena Drive, Diamond Bar
for download from our website here.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
I got a haircut today, and the pleasant banter turned to the fact that Barberella and her husband went to the Irish fair at the Fairplex this weekend.
Appalling fact no. 1: $16 entry plus $9 parking makes for a hefty pricetag.
Appalling fact no. 2: NO IRISH BEER! They only served Budweiser products. Well, apparently they sold Michelob too -- for the appearance of teh fancy. But ferchrissakes, Anheuser-Busch owns Bass -- how hard would it be to sell a little Irish beer? And don't say it's the Fairplex contract, because you can get non-Budelob beers when the LA County Fair is on.
I am truly ashamed of Our Fair City.
Monday, March 9, 2009
- A CUP for beer and wine at the Wing Stop in the shopping center at Arrow and Towne. Anyone have an opinion on this one? According to the supporting documents, the only two other on-sale alcohol licenses in the vicinity are at Shakey's and Sizzler. I've never been in Wing Stop, what's the food like?
- Sign Ordinance for Downtown Specific Plan. The Metro Pomona crowd will likely attend the Commission meeting to weigh in on this one.
- Location/Time: Wednesday @7PM in Council Chambers
- Homeless Issues in Pomona. I don't know if this refers to homeless sleeping in the parks or homeless issues in general. I suppose it could involve recreational opportunities for the homeless (particularly children).
- Park Related issues/Police Department. I'm curious if any parks other than Lincoln park are closing their bathrooms during the week. I've caught a few people urinating in the alley since the November closure. Anyone else have this problem?
- Location/Time: Thursday @ 5:30PM in Administration Board Room (City Hall 2nd floor).
On this week's Board of Parking Place agenda:
- Sorry no agenda yet posted online.
- Location/Time: Thursday @ 6PM in Council Chambers
Kudos to the department that assembles the Historic Preservation and the Planning Commissions documentation. Head and shoulders above the documents from the other commissions.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
I've been enjoying the discussion about historic districts. I tend to be with Ed: Prices need to be kept within limits that encourage compliance. If we encourage violation of rules with ridiculous fees, the city will just end up spending even more money placing liens on property and crap like that. And everyone loses.
But the debate between John, Gilman, and others -- and probably the essential issue surrounding the creation of historic districts -- strikes me as far more philosophical than the discussion lets on.
Namely, I think the disgreement is really over the relevant verb. Is one group's aesthetic sensibilities being pushed over everybody else's (possibly under false pretenses), or is history being preserved for future generations? The chain-link-fence discussion really brings that out, since many people think it's ugly but it has historical value under some circumstances.
I've been wrestling with this issue ever since I read a quotation from the late Nell Soto a while back, asking why she should care about Lincoln Park when her ancestors were never allowed to live there. This fact too is part of the history, and to my mind also important to preserve.
So my position is this: We need to preserve architectural history even when it's butt-ugly. By preserving it, we not only give ordinary citizens the opportunity to benefit from the wisdom of past construction practices, but we also preserve the evidence of those practices for future study. If we are headed for a whomping big energy crisis -- to say nothing of a whomping big earthquake -- we may have a lot to learn from old structures for coping with forces beyond our control. Including construction practices that we may currently consider unimportant.
At the same time, we need to preserve the human and social history associated with neighborhoods (not the historical status quo, mind you, but the knowledge that it once was the status quo). History is an important way of remaining alert to the ways that social groups (whether linguistic, ethnic, religious, economic, or what have you) piss on each other (among other dealings). There are other ways to remind ourselves of this (and, one hopes, guard against it), but they tend to be more contentious than thinking about what's past and done. Just look at this discussion, which is proof that some residents of historic districts feel pissed-upon.
Celebrating its 7th year, The Irish Fair & Music Festival has become the largest festival of its kind in Southern California. With 8 stages featuring true Irish music.
Come join the best Fair ever!
Admission [Note: The 2009 Los Angeles County Irish Fair & Music Festival has lowered admission prices to provide the best family-entertainment value in Southern California!
$16.00 - General Admission
$14.00 - Seniors, age 55 & over
$14.00 - Students, with valid student ID
$26.00 - 2-Day Pass
Children, 11 and under are FREE!
Tickets purchased at the gate are CASH ONLY.
ATMs are located throughout the venue.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Pomona saw three homicides in the month of February. The most recent occurred at the Motel 6 on Garey Ave., near the 60 Freeway. Three suspects were arrested within days of the murder.
Claremont experienced their first murder since 2006. The Claremont PD issued a press release shortly after the homeowner's body was discovered, but now the PD's lips are shut tight. No arrests have been reported.
Montclair experienced a double-homicide resulting from an apparent domestic dispute.
Upland's only homicide was a shooting fatality in January. The reports from the Daily Bulletin suggested the victim was a gang member.
January in Rancho saw a SB County Sheriff shoot a 36 year old from Diamond Bar following a police chase. And in February, a 13 year old boy riding his bike was run down by an alleged drunk driver. The death of the 13 year old follows a fatal hit-and-run bike accident in October which took the life of a 19 year, and two non fatal bike accidents in January. Hmmm, can I suggest riding around Bonelli park.
Homicide ranking of cities by population: Montclair, Claremont, Pomona, Upland, Rancho Cucamonga, Ontario. It pays to be big..........for the first two months.
For a view west of the 605, check out the LA Times Homicide Report.
Monday, March 2, 2009
City Council Agenda 3/2/09
I'm worried about Item 22 (Public Hearing-Zoning code amendment). This amendment covers construction of fences and walls. I believe, currently, the city only requires permits for masonry walls over 4 feet. This amendment would extend the permit requirement to other forms of fencing.
Here's the problem. If this amendment is passed in its current form replacing your fence in a historic district will now require a Major COA (Certificate of Appropriateness). If you haven't been reading my snarky comments on the tree ordinance, you might have missed that a Major COA will cost you $500. Even before a single hole is dug or a screw is purchased, a homeowner in the historic district will be $500 poorer if they want to replace their fence.
Does every resident in the city get smacked with a hefty permit fee. Nope. In fact, based on comments included in Item 22, the members of the Planning Commission apparently were concerned about the cost of the permit for the rest of the city, but still decided to require a Major COA (knowing it would cost $500) for historic district residents.
Can we swap out a standard dog-eared fence for another dog-eared fence? If so, should it require giving the city $500? Will the $500 yield better fences in the historic districts? I'm not opposed to some oversight, even at the possible risk of homogenizing the fence styles. Does it make sense to be yanking $500 out of people's pocket when they want to improve their property? With trees and fences, can we find some way to fast track these alterations and decrease the time investment of the Planning Department, as well as allow review by the HPC.
It's your money (or the little old lady's, on the corner). Speak up! The Council members with historic districts are Soto, Atchley, and Lantz. Send them an email, if you can't attend.
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Very, very cool. My only question is whether the Chamber of Commerce shouldn't be taking this idea and running with it. If it takes the city to lead the way, so be it, but really, the Chamber should create a website, modify the interface and make it easy to shop Pomona.
The city isn't the greatest when it comes to posting agendas, but wow, can they map.