Category Archives: Uncategorized

Ned Ruhstaller, 1954-2016

  Ned Ruhstaller, a nurse, estate salesman and member of a well-known Stockton family, has died. He was recently diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Ned was a great guy. He was cut from the same cloth as his brother Tod, head of The Haggin Museum, and his brother Larry, the former San Joaquin County Supervisor (and [...]

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A “bike mayor” to get things rolling

The city of Amsterdam is appointing a “Bike Mayor” to make the city bike-friendlier. The Cyclist-in-Chief will “promote and protect cycling in the city, acting as a go-between connecting city hall, cyclists, community groups, and anyone who might be affected by new measures designed to improve citizens’ cycling experience,” reports CityLab. Creation of the position [...]

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The long-delayed General Plan redo

Eric Parfrey of Campaign for Common Ground and The Sierra Club copies a letter he sent to the Planning Commission: “We are very disappointed that the City has continued to stonewall progress on the update of our disastrous 2007 General Plan and, by implication, this Planning Commission is complicit in this stonewalling. We urge you [...]

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Mayor Silva’s weirdness

There’s no getting around it: Mayor Anthony Silva is weird. He says weird things. He makes weird decisions. He has weird friends – and more weird friends  — and still more weird friends. He’s a magnet for trouble and suspicious occurrences. And he keeps weird hours. Former City Manager Bob Deis told me Silva was once captured on City Hall’s [...]

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New things in cities

Cities are trying new things: German city experiments with traffic signals in ground • Reports CityLab: Augsburg, Germany, has installed traffic signals in the ground for pedestrians (the new word is “petextrians–MF) distracted by cell phones. Stadtwerke Augsburg installed the LED signals at two rail stations. “The stubborn look at the smartphone can lead on [...]

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A honey of a yacht

Hey, I left a photo out of the photo essay that accompanied the column about Stockton items in the  San Francisco Maritime Research Center. It’s a photo of a honey of a yacht, the Elizabeth II. The eminently collectible wooden model — by “eminently collectible”, I mean “I want it” — as well as the [...]

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Sam Fant’s conspiracy theory

  Council candidate Sam Fant is innocent until proven guilty of the felony election fraud charge against him. But he’s guilty of one thing: preaching distrust of local government. “Stockton (residents) are tired of the good ol’ boys using their influence to attempt to suppress leaders that challenge the status quo,” Fant said. He sounded [...]

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The Al Jolson of Stockton

Criticizing Mayor Anthony Silva is often easier than shooting fish in a barrel. With Silva, the fish paints a target on his forehead, hands you a grenade and yells, Hey! Over here! Like last night. Speaking at a candidate’s forum, Silva chirped, “I may not be black but I’m pretty darn close. I might be the [...]

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Looking back at the horse races

It’s true, as this story says, that horse racing in Stockton dates to “the 1860s.” But  let’s be exact. Horse racing began in year one of that decade, 1860. That’s a venerable tradition. Name me another 156-year-old Stockton tradition. One that began the year before the Civil War. Having never played the ponies, I can’t [...]

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A Doobieous Dictionary

Just in time for 4/20, a Toulumne County man has authored a dictionary of marijuana terminology, “The Doobieous Dictionary.” Jason Porter Collinsworth has filled his reference witrh 1,420 (get it?) “cannabis idioms, colloquialism, and scientific terms” in a style he calls “blunt satire.” Some examples: Anslinger, Harry-n. proof that Satan is real; the Pecksniffian poltroon [...]

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    Michael Fitzgerald

    Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat. Read Full
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