Bad Bimbo

I think that it is terrible that Bimbo just decided to close the stores without letting its customers know — due to a business decision (“Stringers,” April 7). My mom and I have shopped at those stores for years, and then my kids did. Why would they do such a thing? I was once a very loyal customer. I am sorry to say this sucks.

Rebecca Martin
via email


The map that accompanied “Roam-O-Rama” last week did not belong with the text, which described Potrero Regional Park. A map of the park can be seen on the Reader’s website (here).

I (Heart) PB

In regards to the article by Mr. Dorian Hargrove (“Foot Traffic, Retail, Up in Smoke,” “City Lights,” April 7), I specifically mentioned that I was not representing the Pacific Beach Town Council, yet the story could easily be construed by your readers that I spoke on our members’ behalf. Also, I am not a member of the Pacific Beach Planning Group.

Although I commented in your online blog, I want to reassert that I am not anti-alcohol or anti-business. I love Pacific Beach and most of our businesses. I, however, do not love how our business “improvement” district is largely ineffectual or what approximately 20 percent of our bars and restaurants are doing to harm our community and our reputation.

PB is a vibrant, diverse community of families and students, young and old. Yes, our business district, like any other, is built on market forces. The problem is, the only market we seem to be attracting is the people who want to get drunk and generally trash the place. So what businesses move into PB? More and more bars and “restaurants” (aka bars in disguise). Did you know that there are currently 15 new or modified alcohol license applications in process? And most every one is in the highest-concentrated core of PB? Do we really need more alcohol licensees in PB along with the respective crime and problems (even though the 20 percent crew deny there are any resulting problems)?

A major SDSU study shows that of the bars they researched, including PB bars, a test patron visited and was served the equivalent of eight shots in about 50 minutes. That person would have normally been able to acclimate one shot in that hour, yet they were consistently overserved — not just occasionally but by over 90 percent of the establishments.

The bars have no reason to self-police nor admit there are any problems. What’s their motivation? Here in PB — and ultimately in many other communities around San Diego — we need two things. One, a conditional use permit where bars pay between $35 and $100 a month and where a vice officer trained by Alcoholic Beverage Control and San Diego Police can work directly with the licensees and the community to address each other’s concerns. This officer could dole out on-the-spot enforcement (perhaps the alcohol licensees are afraid of) and is a great solution working in other California communities. Since neither the state nor our local police can afford to properly enforce state and local laws, should we just lie down as a community and take it, or should the people profiting from these issues pitch in and help?

The second thing we need is a better business mix. Unfortunately, the $325,000 our business improvement district spends annually does little to change our environment and business mix or to increase our potential visitors’ perception or build community.

Perhaps it’s time to do away with this “business improvement district” and start over with a group that gets it. It’s certainly time to get some oversight of the problem bars and restaurants, isn’t it?

Jerry Hall
via email

Mr. Hall was incorrectly included on the Pacific Beach Planning Group due to an editorial error. — Editor

I Don’t Like Craig Either

I saw the article “Hey, Craig, Where Did My Ad Go?” (“City Lights,” March 31).You know, I had the same problem just about two weeks ago. I placed an ad, and this was not about selling stuff; it was just a personal ad. And Craigslist confirmed that my ad was going to be there, and my ad never appeared. So, I don’t know what’s going on with Craig, but I never really like it. It’s very complicated. You need to be an engineer to know how to place an ad in there. They just make it so difficult. I’m one more customer who said, “Where did my ad go?”

Name Withheld
via voice mail

You Reds In The Red, White, & Blue

Re “A Band of Tinkerers” (Letters, March 31).

My reason for going into mechanical manufacturing engineering was to join the middle-class taxpaying American economy. My father was a poor factory worker in your slum-class economy who drank himself to death before he was 50, leaving us orphans. One of my uncles is 90 and a former taxpayer and still going strong. I feel I can beat the odds and still have a middle-class life with the 30 to 40 years I have left in life in this communist United States.

When manufacturing comes back to the U.S. using the junk we imported from those cheap-labor countries you talk of for raw materials, we can move ahead. I can contribute to a better American economy in the future with this junk. That’s why I am complaining about it now, to bring you up to date on what is going on in the real world instead of your make-believe old world that you don’t want to give up and are rotting your kids in today. Even if the odds are a million to one now, fighting age discrimination, I might get a life out of life in this dead economy in the United States and not rot it from the outside with American pirates with a $1.4E12 offshore economy filled with tax-free freeloaders destroying both sides of the border with a slum-class economy.

John G. Wotzka

Moral, Not Christian

In response to Keith Scott’s worldview, it is good to know that the wealth of a culture is its diversity (“What’s That You’re Reading?” March 24). Our Founding Fathers were quite clear, in their penning of the Constitution, that government and the church be separate. People like Scott let their religious views influence what they believe to be historical fact and fail to see that change — a changing society, in America’s case — is inevitable and that traditional values change as a result. Right-wing organizations, Christian nationalism, tea party people, and the like try to put forth the idea that our country was founded on Christian values but fail to realize that our country was founded on moral values which predate Christianity by millennia. Our forefathers considered religious persecution in Europe, a time when the church had considerable power. They were enlightened enough to see the danger in this and made sure that it would not be repeated here.

As for his views on limited government, the question is, how limited? Balance between the government and the private sector, as with anything in life, is the key. That should be simple enough for anyone with any political view to see.

Mike Myers
via email

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Jerry Hall is not a happy camper. I suggest he move. Quit trying to fight market forces. They trump whiners.

Rebecca Martin is right about the decision of Bimbo to close all those outlet stores. It REALLY sucks if all that bread and pastry now ends up in a landfill, as one commentator claims. We've relied on those stores around the county as our source of baked goods for about thirty years. I've no idea how much notice they provided when the stores were closed, but I'd guess it wasn't much at all, maybe only a day or two. A strange "business decision" from a foreign corporation that has a major market presence in the US, and no explanation was provided. We should all just be happy, I suppose, that those stores were open for as long as they were, offering value to those who shopped them and depended upon them.

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