Back When

Thirty Years Ago In what could have passed as a dress rehearsal for this summer's Democratic national convention, some 325 voters jammed a Clairemont junior high school to pick a slate of 10 potential delegates to represent California's "favorite son" -- Governor Jerry Brown. "The objective," confided one young woman, "is to get to New York this summer. And to a lot of us Jerry Brown looks like the best bet." -- CITY LIGHTS: "A RISING SON...," Paul Krueger, April 15, 1976

Twenty-Five Years Ago Todd Ghio, who runs the Anthony's seafood restaurants here, is half owner of one of the two abalone processors located in San Diego. "We're just about breaking even on our abalone dishes," says Ghio. "We're a seafood house, so we feel we have to carry it [abalone]. But this is a different eating town than a place like San Francisco, where they're getting twenty-four dollars for a meal of abalone. That's what you need to charge to make money on it. People down here just won't pay that." (Anthony's charges between fourteen and nineteen dollars for their abalone dinners.) -- CITY LIGHTS: "Thought There Might Be a Catch," Neal Matthews, April 16, 1981

Twenty Years Ago The wrestling room at Poway High smells the way a serious wrestling room should smell -- like stale sweat, rubber mats, and sour old jockstraps. It's a distinctive wrestling smell, cultured and cured by years of hard work in a stuffy room without windows. Non-admirers of the inglorious sport of high school wrestling might consider, in their ignorance, that smell to be offensive. But the wrestlers themselves know otherwise. For them that smell is a kind of tradition passed down to them from heroes they've only heard stories about. -- "ON THE MAT," Steve Sorensen, April 17, 1986

Fifteen Years Ago I am late to the first Gulf War protest, the one before the war officially starts. It's dusk, and as I cross Broadway and pass the hollow pillars of the Federal building, there is already the rhythmic thumping of somebody's African drum, backed by a thick echo of cheering. I come around the corner onto dark, milling hundreds, a harassed-sounding voice ringing through a PA system. The air has cooled and smells of incense. A girl twirls in circles, then skips off through the crowd, shaking a tambourine. — "PEACE BE STILL," Kathy Miller, April 18, 1991

Ten Years Ago When she gave her closing argument in O.J. Simpson's murder trial, Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Marcia Clark's hair was straight and she was clad in pure white: "The hollow-eyed voice of reason, her wan appearance the living embodiment of an arduous 'search for truth' through science," according to the Los Angeles Times. And when defense attorney Johnnie Cochran, Jr., delivered his closing argument, Clark wore red. Nine months earlier, before her life had become tabloid fodder, Clark delivered her opening argument dressed in black. A black, conservative suit coupled with a white blouse with a juvenile-looking Peter Pan collar and bow. Her hair was curly then, her hemlines a little shorter than later in the trial. "Dignified but feminine," proclaimed a consultant who analyzed her attire in the Times the next day. -- "CAN I WEAR MY GOOD LUCK DRESS?" Jane Farr, April 11, 1996

Five Years Ago Valerie Stallings's guilty plea in late January to two state misdemeanors for not reporting gifts from Padres owner John Moores resulted in her resignation from the city council and a $10,000 fine. And yet the revelations of Moores's four-year gift-bounty to Stallings have some San Diegans in disbelief -- fuming, really -- as to why Stallings took the fall and Moores was exonerated and why neither was charged with a federal offense after being investigated by the FBI. -- "THE JOHN MOORES EXEMPTION," Matt Potter, April 12, 2001

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