Ours is a world of lists—lists of what's in, lists of what's out; top lists, bottom lists, long lists, short lists, to-do lists, don't-do lists; lists of what to read, what to buy, what to watch; who's rich, who's in, who's out; five things to do to [fill in the blank], five things to avoid if you want to [fill in the blank]. Damn! We love our lists.
For our annual Summer Guide, we've jammed out lists—utilitarian lists, whimsical lists, silly lists and at least one downright creepy list. Let our lists guide you through summer. Wanna go hiking? We got your list. Looking to have some fun in Baja? Yup—it's listed. Looking to avoid beachwear faux pas? Or make a mix-tape for your road trip to Silverado Canyon? Check and check. So, here's to a summer that's anything but—how should we put it?—list-less.
Four reasons to hike in East County
1. Cedar Creek Falls—This hike appeases the novice, the adventure-seeker, the rock climber and the playful child within. The Saddleback Trail in the Eagle Peak Preserve near Julian winds through overlapping slopes of wildflowers and grass into the San Diego River Valley. Though the river trickles at a creek's pace in San Diego proper, here it gushes into a 100-foot waterfall and swimming hole uncharacteristic of our desert landscape. Advanced hikers can cut to the left halfway through the Saddleback Trail to follow a creek to the top of the falls, where water slows before splashing over an infinity-pool-like ledge. Starting at the top of the falls, rather than following Saddleback to the base, requires climbing down to reach the swimming hole—literally climbing. This shortcut should only be taken by fit athletes or explorers willing to endure sore muscles a full week later. But this option is a welcome challenge that allows visitors to tailor their experience. The swimming hole is clear, warm and deep enough for diving. On warm days, there will be plenty of people lounging on blow-up rafts and sipping beers. But the falls' popularity doesn't rob one of experiencing nature. The scenery surrounding the intersecting trails acts as a noise buffer, absorbing any sounds that don't belong to birds or wind. If you stop on the trail for rest, you'll be overtaken by complete silence—perhaps an eerie silence, depending on how close you feel to death after struggling to complete the 4.5-mile trail. Though Cedar Creek Falls is a popular warm-weather destination, the trail's remoteness and variability offers something for every type of hiker. To get there, take Highway 78 and 79 to Pine Hill Road. Make a right on Eagle Peak Road and follow it to the right until you find a makeshift parking lot at the trailhead.
2. Hell Hill—If it's solitude you want, Hell Hill, as it is affectionately called by cross-country teams forced to defeat the steep incline for training, is largely undiscovered. Though the path is cleared and worn by horse tracks, it stems out of private property before crossing into county-marked trails. To find the hike, follow Highway 67 to Willows Road in Lakeside and park at the Little League field near the intersection of Willows Road and Wild Cat Canyon Road. Follow the road east on foot to the trailhead just past Calvary Ranch. The hike ends at Steltzer Park, from which you take Wildcat Canyon Road back to your car.
The first half is a difficult mile-long ascent up slippery granite, but the steep climb is short enough that you'll remain energized for the rest of the hike, and offers instantly gratifying views of the El Cajon Valley and orange and purple wildflowers. Veer to the left and you'll find a rock formation that could easily have sprung from your childhood imagination. The boulders form natural picnic tables and caves, and provide enough entertainment to tack an extra hour onto your trip. The scenery on Hell Hill feels softer, more comfortable than the nature on Cowles and Iron mountains. Instead of harsh switchbacks and dry brush, Hell Hill features rounded rocks and open meadows as you trek down that backside of the hill into Steltzer Park. The route seems to match bliss with adventure, and hiking it feels like a true connection with nature. Because so few people know of the trail, you become the ruler of the rock fortress at the top, and the view belongs only to you.
3. Iron Mountain—To get here, practiced hikers park near the intersection of Poway Road and Highway 67. The nearly six-mile, moderate hike takes you up 1,000 feet through scenery that varies greatly from Cowles' uniform switchbacks. The changing views foster a sense of adventure and exploration. The top offers a panoramic view comparable to the one offered by Cowles, but it also looks east to Ramona and piles of boulders that stir childhood fantasies of scaling giant rocks and building stone forts. To add to the whimsy, a mailbox with a pen and paper is affixed to the peak, allowing hikers to record their successes and musings. Here, hikers seem more removed from the everyday routines that hinder connections with people and places. No matter how short of breath one is, everybody manages to gasp a hello and put a smile on his or her flushed face when passing others on the trail.
4. Cowles Mountain—It rises 950 feet from Golfcrest Drive off of Navajo Road. The intermediate hike is the highest peak within San Diego city limits and offers panoramic views to the ocean and Tijuana. Its gently rising path and proximity to the city make it the showpiece of Mission Trails Park. Families, large groups and couples flock to the mountain on clear days. While the company doesn't distract from the view, it does deprive one of that thoughtful solitude he or she might desire. But for a novice or someone looking for a short escape, Cowles Mountain provides an adequate challenge that rewards with a fresh gust of air and a striking vista.—Megan Burks
Four places to get your swim on
1. The new Coronado Community Center (totally legal), 1845 Strand Way.
2. The Pearl Hotel (legal if you buy a drink), 1410 Rosecrans St., Point Loma.
3. The Lafayette Hotel (legal if you buy a drink), 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park.
4. The huge residential towers near the corner of Sixth and Pennsylvania in Hillcrest (totally illegal, but the fence you'll have to jump is low).—Kinsee Morlan
Ways to let it ride
1. Ye Olde Bicycle Shoppe & Café knows how to ride right. This funky shop offers used bikes for sale and expert repairs on one side and a café-cum-vintage-bicycle-museum on the other. The charming staff and eclectic bike selection alone are worth the trip. But with lunch, free wi-fi and a wealth of riding stories from owner Dave Taitano, Ye Olde Bicycle Shoppe is a must for rookies and retro-grouches alike. 6792-94 University Ave. in La Mesa. www.yeoldebicycleplace.com. 619-582-4334.
2. These days, 30 bucks in La Jolla won't get you much beyond a small appetizer. But this summer, La Jolla Kayak's $30 “Taco & Beer Paddle” is the exception. Yep, for just three 10-spots, the ocean-exploration outfit is sweetening its already-sweet rental deal with a two-hour kayak ride in and around beautiful La Jolla Cove, followed by a yummy taco-and-cold-beer combo at El Charro Café in La Jolla Shores. Stick around and you can spend all the money you saved on more beer. 2199 Avenida de la Playa. Call 858-459-1114 or go to www.lajollakayak.com to reserve your rental online.
3. There's only one place you can go to relive your childhood, see a bunch of chicks hash it out in short-shorts and tube socks and listen to bad '70s music as you crash into walls and small children. If you guessed the disco-happy fun house that is the American roller rink, you may have already been to Skateworld in Linda Vista. A landmark since 1975, Skateworld is the only roller-skating rink in San Diego. It hosts public skate sessions, birthday parties and regular roller derby bouts with the sassy San Diego Derby Dolls. Let the good times roll. 6907 Linda Vista Road. www.sandiegoskateworld.com. 858-560-9278.
5. Look out Bonanza—Happy Trails has come to town. Actually, Happy Trails Horse Rentals has been around for years, giving San Diegans a chance to tour the 3,677 acre Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve on horseback. Located just off of Black Mountain Road, Happy Trails offers guided trail rides and pony rides for li'l buckaroos. Who knew so much nature was just north of Mira Mesa? 12115 Black Mountain Road at Canyonside Stables. 858-271-8777 for details and reservations. www.happytrails-usa.com.
6. If bucking bronco is more your style, fear not. North Park meets Wild West at the new bar/lounge U-31. Although this urban bar features everything from drum-and-bass to reggae, U-31 recently traded in a chance at class for the opportunity to see drunk 20- and 30-somethings get flung off a mechanical bull. You too can ride the bull every other Monday and enjoy happy hour from 5 to 9 p.m. as well. Yeehaw! 3112 University Ave. www.myspace.com/U31sandiego.—Athena Davis
Hills to ride a Big Wheel down1. Noble Canyon Trail starting at the top of Mount Laguna and ending in Pine Valley.
2. Narragansett Avenue in O.B. Caution: certain death.
3. Mount Soledad Road in La Jolla: watch out for landslides.
4. University Avenue just east of Park Boulevard—just don't end up in Pecs by accident!
5. Mission Trails Soycott Wash Trail—watch out for rattlesnakes.—Dryw Keltz
Ways to get away with drinking illegally on the beach
1. Cylindrical flasks—conveniently shaped to fit in almost any orifice!
2. Papier-mâché cozy, à la Martha Stewart Living. Create a hollow insulating shell mimicking a milk jug or an extra-large Martinelli's apple-shaped juice bottle.
3. Vodka, gin, light rum and silver tequila are all clear. Empty out those 1.5-liter Aquafina bottles and go to town!
4. Create a diversion. If you see cops coming, quickly place your empty beer bottles next to your napping, sun-bathing neighbors and point the finger of blame at them.
5. Don't even hide it. There aren't enough cops in this city to patrol the beaches, anyway. In fact, ask the vigilantes to sit back and throw down a few. You'll either get a ticket or gain lifelong friends.—Justin Roberts, Enrique Limón and Aaryn Belfer
Ways to prevent getting sand in your junk
1. Avoid the beach or anything beach-related. Paper drink umbrellas, the 1965 Annette Funicello classic Beach Blanket Bingo and, especially, music by The Beach Boys should all be on your shit list. Do not leave the door open for temptation. As Jeff Goldblum's character in Jurassic Park says: “Nature always finds a way.” Good vibrations, my foot!
2. If you must ignore the warning in No. 1, wrap your nether regions in plastic cling wrap before putting on a swimsuit. Ladies can opt for the more breathable bubble wrap as a way of preventing a nasty yeast infection.
3. Reassess your beach attire. Like a flavorful onion, the secret is in the layers. Sunbathe wearing a full-length wetsuit, perhaps—UV rays are harmful anyway. Sure, your tan will be terribly uneven, but in the eternal junk vs. sand battle, your privates will come out triumphant.
4. Write a heartfelt letter to ConAgra Foods, makers of PAM cooking spray, strongly suggesting they partner up with Coppertone to develop a no-stick suntan mist.
5. If even after following these suggestions to a T, those satanic rock- and mineral-composed granules make it to where the sun don't shine, go home, rub some olive oil on it and give yourself an invigorating all natural body scrub. Your junk will never look younger.—Enrique Limón
Beachwear's seven deadly sins
1. Envy: Sure, you can't stand it when you see someone showing off all their worldly belongings in one overstuffed bold-printed tote bag, but that doesn't mean you should try to one-up them. Edit it down to a discrete pouch containing sunscreen and perhaps a good book. Remember the old saying: Guys don't make passes to girls with tote masses.
2. Pride: The only thing worse than owning tie-dye is showing it off with your head held high. Yes, you might be getting looks, but it's mostly people wondering where you parked your van, and are you a registered sex offender?
3. Wrath: Unless you're a power lesbian on her way to the Dinah Shore golf weekend, head-visors should be avoided. Rumor has it they've been banned from the Australian coastline due to the growing number of sunbathing beauties using them as makeshift boomerangs to whack boyfriend-snatching beach hussies. Tie-dye visors are a double whammy.
4. Sloth: So, you think all those weeks of Dancing with the Stars-watching, beer-drinking and gym-avoidance won't show if you camouflage yourself in one of those silk-screened “hot body” shirts? Think again. Next thing you know, the terrorists will be using those T-shirts to conceal their weapons of mass destruction. Is that an H-bomb? Oh, no, just a silver-helmet-wearing fat lady with one of those cooky shirts. Let's go take a picture... boom!
5. Gluttony: Ah, yes, gluttons of makeup are among the worst people out there on a sunny day. I don't care if Maybelline is making foundation with SPF nowadays; you're on your way to the beach, not a brothel, so tone it down with the rouge, honey. Nothing says “party foul” like having a kid come up to your beach towel asking for a balloon.
6. Greed: Just because your mom let you use her credit card at Claire's Boutique doesn't mean you should show off all of your exquisite purchases at once. Dosify it. Save the shimmer bangle bracelet for church, not the sand. And skip sporting the guitar-pick necklace-and-earrings set at the pier; it's way more appropriate for a fancy dinner at Red Lobster.
7. Lust: Men try to arouse the ladies' deepest desires by wearing Travis Barker-inspired side-cut T-shirts. Yes, she is giggling, and, yes, she's signaling for you to come over. But, it's to introduce you to her gay best friend. Your call, guys.—Enrique Limón
Songs to listen to while having sex on the beach
1. “Tighter and Tighter,” Alive and Kicking
2. “The Biggest Part of Me,” Ambrosia
3. “Night Time is the Right Time,” Tina Turner
4. “Magnet and Steel,” Walter Egan
5. “Do You Think I'm Sexy,” Rod Stewart
6. “So Into You,” Atlanta Rhythm Section
7. “Sex Machine,” James Brown
8. “Slippery When Wet,” The Commodores
9. “Dirty Love,” Frank Zappa
10. “Escape,” Rupert Holmes
11. “Me & Mrs. Jones,” Billy Paul
12. “Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin',” Journey
13. “Go All the Way,” Raspberries
14. “Groove Me,” Fern Kinney
15. “I Want You,” “Let's Get it On,” “Sexual Healing,” Marvin Gaye
16. “How Deep is Your Love,” The Bee Gees—Aaryn Belfer
Crazy Pet Owner (CPO) types you'll encounter at Dog Beach
1. CPOs who refuse to accept the reality that their precious li'l pooch is foaming-at-the-mouth mean and then get mad when another dog finally shrugs its shoulders and kicks their dog's ass.
2. CPOs who act really surprised when no one wants to pet their extremely intimidating (and untrained) leather-and-spike-collared pit bull.
3. CPOs who spend their entire visit running up and down the beach after their dogs begging for them to “come,” fearing Michael Vick-esque scorn should they actually exercise control over their pet.
4. CPOs who establish a “zone of decapitation” around them by launching tennis balls from a Chuk-It thrower at Trevor Hoffman-like speed, failing to realize that you don't have to hurl a ball halfway up the coast to exercise your dog.
5. CPOs who seem to go out of the way to have their dogs poo in inappropriate places and whose idea of dealing with it is kicking sand over the poo.
6. CPOs who wash other CPOs' dog poo off their feet in the ocean while trying very hard not to look like they're washing dog poo off their feet.
7. Oblivious CPOs who bring their lunches to the beach but fail to bring enough to satisfy the 50 or so dogs suddenly up in their faces.
8. CPOs who think that just because your dog wants to mate with theirs, you want to mate with them. Where's the spike-collared pit bull when you need him?
9. CPOs who act as if your dog's unsolicited efforts to mate with theirs is somehow a sex crime.
10. CPOs who think their dog is better than everybody's else's and so don't want their dog to play with anyone else's lest they be a bad influence. In short: Poodle owners. —Seth Combs and David Silva
Crazy dogs you'll encounter at Dog Beach
1. Yuppie labs in cardigans (with accompanying yuppie couple in matching cardigans).
2. Great Danes that think they're the size of a Chihuahua and jump on your chest.
3. Bug-eyed little yappy dogs with incontinence issues.
4. Senile mutts who are 120 years old in dog years and think you're the reincarnation of their first owner and follow you everywhere.
5. Dogs that will eat anything, including, but not limited to, seaweed, cigarette butts, other dogs' poo and sunbathers' toes.
6. Dogs that can swim better than you.
7. Alpha dogs who keep telling your dog what to do and who wash their paws obsessively.
8. Basset hounds who bark so loudly that somewhere in the depths of hell, a three-headed dog barks back.
9. Two words: Frisbee stealers.
10. And, of course, the ubiquitous leg-humper—Seth Combs and David Silva
Seven ways to keep cool (Not all of the items on this list promise to cool you down on a hot day, but if you can't beat the heat, you might as well look cool sweating. Stop by any of these spots for a summer refresher in San Diego culture.)
1. The Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College is a beautiful example of what conscious design can yield. In addition to gorgeous gardens, including a “bird and butterfly garden” and a “touch and smell garden” (think geraniums and peppermint), the Water Conservation Garden offers exhibits on turf, compost and much more. Gardens provide an interactive, educational, family-friendly environment, and admission is free. 12122 Cuyamaca College Drive West, El Cajon. Visit www.thegarden.org or call 619-660-0614 for details.
2. Subtext loves design. And if you do, too, then you must visit this gem of a bookstore/gallery/toy shop tucked away in Little Italy. Serving up a funky library of buyable books on art, illustration, photography, architecture and design, Subtext also pulls in hard-to-find magazines, toys and real live art for your viewing and purchasing pleasure. Knowledgeable, friendly staff are happy to chat, even if you're just browsing. 680 West Beech St. 619-876-0664. www.subtext store.com.
3. Distinction Gallery & Artist Studios. Located in a 7,000-square-foot building made up of one cutting-edge gallery and 14 artist studios, Distinction features a wide variety of figurative pop and urban surrealist works. Step in from the heat and find yourself in a wonderland of local craft. Drinks, live music and lots of art can be ingested on the second Saturday of each month in the gallery at 317 East Grand Ave., Escondido. 760-781-5779. www.distinctionart.com.
4. Stone Brewing Co. has special summer seasonals just waiting for your taste buds' approval. Visit this state-of-the-art brewery for a complimentary tour followed by a guided tasting. Also worth a visit is Stone's World Bistro and Gardens on-site restaurant, featuring fresh, local and all-natural ingredients complemented, of course, by a selection of fresh local brews. The food is as good as the beer, which is saying a lot. Arrive early to register for a tour in-person at 1999 Citracado Pkwy., Escondido. 760-471-4999. www.stonebrew.com.
5. The Kroc Center Ice Arena probably won't make you look cool as you attempt to glide with thin metal blades on slippery ice, but there is something appealing about winter sports in summer. The Kroc Center Arena, located on a 12-acre family support, education, recreation and cultural arts facility, has public admission and skate rentals for $9 and also holds pickup hockey and broomball games. 6737 University Ave. in La Mesa. www.kroccenterice.com. 619-269-1498.
6. Landmark Theaters. You can be sure of two things: Summer blockbusters tend to suck, and movie theaters are cold. Therefore, indulge in an independent film that might actually make you think this summer at one of San Diego's three Landmark Theaters locations: Hillcrest Cinemas (3965 Fifth Ave.), Ken Cinema (4061 Adams Ave. in Kensington), La Jolla Village Cinemas (8879 Villa La Jolla Drive). 619-819-0236. www.landmarktheatres.com.
7. Dizzy's downtown provides patrons with a rare opportunity to hear live jazz from world musicians at a low-bordering-on-ridiculously-low cover (usually about $8). With acts like Gilbert Castellanos, Toni Price and Bill Watrous set to perform this summer, Dizzy's is still keeping it cool. A new location at the San Diego Wine and Culinary Center means guests can now enjoy some wine with their wail. All ages are welcome and tickets are cash only at the door. Harbor Club Towers ground floor, Second Avenue and J Street, Downtown. www.dizzyssandiego.com.—Athena Davis
10 reasons to go to Baja California
1. Lots and lots of wine: In Season 4 of South Park, Kenny ends up in Ensenada and is convinced he's in Hell. But the Ensenada Wine Harvest Festival/Fiestas de la Vendimia shows just how wrong Trey and Matt can be. With wine events happening in Ensenada's gorgeous Valle de Gaudalupe from Aug. 1 through Aug. 17, the port city is waaaay closer to the fluffy clouds of heaven than the fiery pits of hell. E-mail fiestasvendimia@hot mail.com for details.
2. Dogs running after cute little fake bunnies: The dog races at Hipodromo de Agua Caliente are entertaining whether you bet your hard-earned cash or not. Experts check the stats of each beautiful greyhound for betting purposes, but we recommend putting your money (or just your gentleperson's bet with a friend) on the dog wearing the cutest little jersey. The stripes! The stripes! Check out bet.caliente.com.mx.
3. Mercado Hidalgo: This open-air farmers market (corner of Sanchez Toboada and Avenida Independencia in Tijuana's Zona Rio neighborhood) is fun and functional. Go for the produce and homemade Mexican candy, but stay for the strange Mexican curiosities, the excellent food at little taco joints tucked here and there and the totally Tijuanense atmosphere.
4. D-Town Tijuana: This new arts and music fest is being shaped as we speak, but with Sigur Rós and MSTRKRFT already booked, it looks like things are taking the shape of awesomeness. The events are going down June 6 through 8, but you should get your tickets now at www.dtowntijuana.com.
5. Julieta Venegas: A beautiful Mexican girl who can play the accordion and the piano while singing heart-wrenching love songs—that's more than enough reason to cross the line, right? Venegas is the pop princess of Latin America, but unlike Britney Spears or Jessica Simpson, this woman has a soul and a brain and a heart and a little something they call talento down south. The lovely lady takes the stage at El Foro in Tijuana July 19. Call 619-734-2333 for tickets.
6. Sweet treats: El Mejor Pan de Tecate, the fabulous bakery located at 331 Av. Juárez in Tecate, has a mouthwatering selection of cakes, donuts, conchas, breads and other colorful, fresh-baked delicacies. Founded in 1969, El Mejor Pan has been a staple for Tecate residents and tourists alike. Bread is still warm and the quinceañera cakes are to die for, so grab a tray and load up with goodies before you head back to the border. Visit www.el mejorpandetecate.com for details and recipes or call 011-52-665-0040.
7. Camping: Fresh air, stunning mountains and an abundant wine country are just a few reasons to abandon the beach and set your tent up in Tecate. Rancho Ojai is a working ranch and campsite located in Tecate's countryside, about 13 miles from downtown. The site has room for tents and RVs, or you can rent a wood cabin with full electrical service if you're into that whole camping-with-amenities thing. Call 011-52-665-3014 for reservations. www.rancho-ojai.com.
8. Fairs and fiestas: Art, culture and beer abound in Tecate in summer. The usually quiet town takes a few weeks to celebrate with the Feria Tecate en Marcha, which falls in July some years and August in others. In addition to parades and rodeos, the annual fair showcases crafts from Tecate's thriving arts community. To learn more, contact the Tecate Tourism Trust at 011-52-665-654-5892.
9. Dead bulls: That's right—bullfighting. We know we'll get some concerned e-mails from the PETA folks, but the Mexican consulate called and won us over with the old cultural-importance argument. The season kicks off May 25. www.tjbullfight.com.
10. Men in masks: Tijuana's Lucha Libre fights feature some of the sport's most voracious men in spandex. The luchas smack down on Friday nights throughout summer. You wish you could easily order tickets online and show up an hour before to get to your seats, don't you? Well, leave your sense of American privilege behind and drive down at least three hours early to purchase tickets (which start around $10) at the box office, located at the Auditorio Municipal on Agua Caliente Boulevard in Colonia El Parais (best bet: take a cab; otherwise, you'll get lost). To find out when the fights are happening, call 011-52-664-250-9015 or 888-775-2417 or visit www.seetijuana.com.—Kinsee Morlan and Athena Davis
Three ways to not get kidnapped in TJ
1. Don't look too American. Get a dark tan, wear a straw hat and refer to everyone as “ese.” You'll be brushed off as part of the local working class immediately.
2. Don't flash money around. In fact, try paying for your 2x1 cervezas with Monopoly money (better to have them think you're slow than well off; plus, pesos look a lot like Monopoly money so it may actually work).
3. Don't wear Crocs. Just don't. Trust us.—Kinseee Morlan and Enrique Limón
Four ways to get kidnapped in TJ
1. Wear snake-skin everything and walk like George Jefferson while whistling the “Moving on Up” theme song loudly.
2. Go ahead and let that annoying guy with a whistle poor tequila down your throat, then walk along Revolucion at 4 a.m. proudly yelling at natives, “Si yo quiero, te compro, cabrón!” (“If I want, I can buy you, fucker!”).
3. Wear Crocs.
4. Visit the Red Zone and buy yourself a $30 hooker. When you wake up to find your wallet missing, get all huffy and indignant, find her pimp and threaten him with promises of how well-connected and important you are.—Kinseee Morlan and Enrique Limon
Five reasons to drive a few dozen miles north
1. The Sawdust Festival—So maybe the Laguna Canyon arts festival has lost its edge since it opened in 1966 as “a revolt against the local art establishment,” but it's still quaint and cute, and you'll find at least one piece of jewelry or woodwork or an art print to add to your collection. Runs June 27 through Aug. 31. 935 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach. www.sawdustartfestival.org.
2. The Lab and its ilk—Orange County natives might remember when the “Anti-Mall” first opened, bringing Urban Outfitters and Tower Alternative (Tower records for the cool set, R.I.P.) to The O.C. The stores are just as unaffordable as they were 15 years ago, but at least now you've got more than babysitting money to spend. Across the street are more shops called “The Camp,” aka a “retail community compound.” Both are part of an area that's been dubbed “SoBeCa” (“South on Bristol Entertainment, Culture and Arts”). Rumor is, the hip factor cools the SoBeCa air by at least 10 degrees. 2930 and 2937 Bristol St., in Costa Mesa. www.thelab.com, thecampsite.com, www.sobeca.net.
3. Silverado Canyon (and surroundings)—Take Interstate 5 north to the 261 transportation corridor and exit Santiago Canyon Road and head south. Enjoy the lovely drive, with all its trees and nature preserves and quaint little country stores. When you get to Silverado Canyon Road, bear left, or continue along Santiago Canyon Road to Live Oak Canyon (if you find yourself on El Toro Road, turn back—you've gone too far). Stop at Cook's Corner, “the oldest road house in South Orange County,” for a beer and burger (www.cookscorner.com). Make sure to sober up and take Live Oak Canyon Road to Santa Margarita Parkway, turn left on El Toro Road, hit the 5 South and head home.
4. Downtown Fullerton—Yes, former O.C.ians, you read that right. Word is that the formerly unsightly 'burb, best known for its hideous Cal State campus, is developing a rather hip little shopping and dining district that includes a “vintage department store” and a British tea room/tavern. Go to www.downtownfullerton.com and see for yourself.
5. Bowers Museum—The place where O.C. school kids were dragged in the '70s and '80s to learn all about Orange County history has grown up and significantly expanded its collection. This summer, the museum hosts some pretty cool exhibits. Through Oct. 12 is hosts the largest exhibit of Terra Cotta Warriors—life-size statues constructed to protect China's first emperor after death—ever seen outside of China. Opening June 17: Gems! Colors of Lights and Stone, “the most important private gem collection in the United States.” 2002 North Main St., Santa Ana. 714-567-3600. www.bowers.org.—Kelly Davis
Five places to go on El Cajon Boulevard
1. Safari Market (corner of 54th Street and El Cajon). This East African bazaar is loaded with exotic goods you won't find at Wal-Mart.
2. Exotic Gardens (2212 El Cajon Blvd.). Yep, the new nightclub Universal officially took over the garden's old spot on University Avenue, but its new home on El Cajon is bigger and better—succulents, Staghorns and cacti are calling your name!
3. Tacos El Panson (4433 El Cajon Blvd.). Homemade tortillas and tacos filled with yummy but strange meat can be found here.
4. Botanica Chango (3095 El Cajon Blvd.). Need to chase away bad spirits via incense and oils? Need a plastic Jesus or Virgin Mary? This is your spot.
5. Bangkok Spices (2832 El Cajon Blvd.). The vegetarian satay appetizer—mock duck on a stick served with peanut sauce and chopped cucumbers in vinegar—is fantastic.—Kinsee Morlan
Ways to rediscover your childhood
1. As you walk through the midway at the San Diego County Fair, pause in front of a carnival game, tug on someone's arm and shriek about how much you neeeed a goldfish.
2. Insist on calling the San Diego County Fair “The Del Mar Fair.” While you're at it, go ahead and call Qualcomm Stadium “The Murph.”
3. After filling a sufficient number of water balloons and loading a neon-green Super Soaker, knock on your neighbor's door and ask, “Can so-and-so come out to play?” Throw a preemptive balloon and then wage water warfare in the streets.
4. Find a pile of slimy seaweed—preferably with sand fleas swarming above it—and throw it on an unsuspecting girl. If you want to be more forward, send a friend to ask her if she likes you.
5. Lay in the grass or sand and let your mind roam. Forget cloud animals, get creative. The land at the opposite end of the bay could easily be a different continent, and that makes you the world's largest human.
6. Scour Kobey's swap meet for pogs and a sweet yin-yang slammer. If that fails, settle for plastic butterfly barrettes or a Leonardo DiCaprio poster.
7. Skip-It down the boardwalk. Passing skaters and cyclists won't mind.
8. Explore a tide pool. The receding water at Sunset Cliffs reveals scurrying sand crabs and shell boogers—yes, shell boogers. Forget their biological name, these slimy green creatures shrouded in shells squirt water when you poke them. Nothing says childhood like torturing small animals.—Megan Burks
The bugs of summer
1. Jerusalem Cricket: For the most part, insects scare the crap out of me. Unless I'm certain it will not bite, sting, siphon, burrow, prick, infest, infect or inject its eggs into my brain and have the larvae eat my head from the inside out, I basically steer clear of any insect I encounter, especially the scary looking ones, and this Jerusalem cricket looks horrifying. Tinted orange with black and orange bands on its body, it looks like an evil Martian cricket sent to invade our planet one venomous sting at a time. The reality, however, is that it doesn't have poison glands and isn't aggressive. When encountered, I recommend squashing it under your boot until it's but a black and bloody splotch on your memory.
2. Green Fruit Beetle: Also known as the June bug, these flying insects will invade your airspace around—you guessed it—June. You've seen them before. They're green and huge and clumsy and dumb. When I moved to San Diego and first witnessed one of these giant, green monstrosities, it scared the living scabies out of me. The way she loudly buzzed around the patio, bumping into everything with a resounding thud, made me mistake her stupidity for fearlessness and think she was most certainly coming to lay her eggs in my brainmeat. Of course, they're utterly harmless, and for that reason, when encountering a June bug, I suggest batting it out of the air with a Wiffle Ball bat.
3. Kissing Bug: This is what infuriates me about some of these insect types. They have these totally harmless-sounding names that make you think you could love and trust them, only to find out the reason it's called a kissing bug is because it sucks blood from your lips when you're sleeping. If encountered, you should shoot and stab it in the face like you would any other home-intruder-molester type.
4. Termites: As a home owner, all I have to say about this group of insects is, “Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you!” When encountered, I recommend putting your house on the market.
5. Argentine Ants: I kinda dig ants. As long as they stay outside and don't crawl on my own personal skin, I'm cool—except, of course, for those goddamn Argentine ants. To Hell with them! They are predatory and violent and spreading across the globe via Argentina's agricultural shipping exports. They're the Borg of the insect world. Once they arrived in San Diego, they started attacking and eating all the native ants, which didn't have a chance against the deluge. The SoCal ants were just chilling on the tops of their respective ant hills in beach chair with buckets of Coronas by their sides when the Argentines swooped in and ate their asses. When an Argentine ant colony is encountered, pour gasoline into the hole and set it on fire.
6. Golden Garden Spider: I have mixed feelings about spiders. On one hand, they're noble and effective insect destroyers, catching the annoying little buggers in their webs, sucking out their life-slime and leaving their emaciated corpses suspended in the web as a message to other insects: Beware all ye who cometh here. I like that part about spiders. But they're also scary to humans. And, some of them can kill you. Badly. The golden garden spider can't kill you, but it will bite. And, as scary appearances go, this one makes the Jerusalem cricket look like a ladybug in a lily field. The thing is huge. Females grow up to almost an inch long. She's got a fat, yellow and black abdomen and thick black and orange banded legs that have several rows of black hairs running single file toward her feet. Her bite is not deadly to humans, but I have no doubt that she would lay her eggs in your brainmeat given half the chance. When encountered, I recommend enslavement of some sort, since she will catch and kill other bugs for you.
7. Common House Fly: There are simply no words capable of expressing my fear and loathing of the common house fly. Just the thought of its hairy legs dragging particles of dog excrement and rat dander all over my picnic guacamole bowl makes me turn white. Suffice to say, that guacamole is as good as dead to me. When encountered, I recommend capture and slow torture—you know, to send a message.
8. Western Honeybee: I really hope the bees come back soon. Talk about ecological instability. If they stay gone for much longer, we'll have to evolve back to lizards and move into the caves. If encountered, I recommend a ticker-tape parade, with confetti, marching bands and balloons shaped like huge cartoon characters.—Edwin Decker
Cute baby animals you can see in or near San Diego
1. Panda cub (San Diego Zoo)
2. Leopard shark babies (La Jolla Cove, best in August)
3. Red River hoglets (San Diego Zoo)
4. Rabbit kittens (Balboa Park, best in May and early June)
5. Seal pups (La Jolla Children's Pool)
6. Lion cubs (San Diego Wild Animal Park)
7. Gray whale calves (May, Laguna San Ignacio)
8. Tiger cubs (San Diego Zoo)
9. Juvenile elephants (San Diego Wild Animal Park)—Eric Wolff
Ways to create a vacation-resort-like feel in your studio apartment
1. For a tropical punch, skip the creamer and add Malibu rum to your morning coffee instead.
2. After making your bed, leave an Andes chocolate mint on the pillow and act surprised upon finding it at night.
3. Empty out your fridge, get creative and serve up your leftovers “buffet style.”
4. If you're lucky enough to have a hallway, put down a Slip ‘n Slide and go to town. During the evening hours, convert it into a makeshift shuffleboard deck for added fun.
5. Arrive barefoot at your local watering hole and insist on paying for booze with necklace drink tokens à la Club Med.
6. Put dirty laundry in a bag and set it outside your door in hopes that someone will wash it for you.
7. If your lease is ending soon, and you're looking for a way to leave with a bang, dig a hole in the yard and have yourself a good ol' fashion island pig roast.
8. Get sand in your junk. The more, the better. Nothing says vacation like some good chafing.
9. Buy a whistle and annoy the hell out of your neighbors by becoming your building's self-appointed activities director. Puka-shell bracelet class at 7 a.m.? You've got it!—Enrique Limón
Reasons to hate Crocs
1. Look down. Those little holes are looking at you all day. Everything you say and do is being observed by those Satan eyes. Everything.
2. Wearing them might get you confused with a colorblind mad scientist or a lunatic scrap-booking housewife.
3. They are rumored to be both Kim Jong Il and Rosie O'Donnell's footwear of choice.
4. According to The Daily Show, anyone wearing them “is soliciting incredibly depraved gay sex.” Think about that the next time you find yourself sporting a pair and need to relieve yourself in a Balboa Park restroom.
5. Because innumerable YouTubers can't be wrong. User Joeyhotguy92 states: “They're not fashionable, they're not in style. If you wanna look ugly, put on a pair of Crocs, some overalls and go look ugly.” This coming from a pudgy teen with Joey Buttafuouco hair. User SoSophisticated54321 goes as far as saying: “If you have Crocs, you should probably drown.”
6. As we learned in a compelling Inside Edition exposé, innocent children are getting their tiny rubber-clad feet caught in escalators, and 5-year-old Isabella Payne of Huntsville, Ala., has the battle scars to prove it.
7. A top-selling T-shirt for sale at Ihatecrocs.blogspot.com says it best: “They are to your eyes what second-hand smoke is to your lungs.”—Enrique Limón
Things to do with your Crocs
1. Make your Mary Jane Crocs into Mary Jane Chia Pets. The anti-toe sweat holes allow for a perfect combination of aeration and light. Grow kind bud as dank as the feet that once wore the offending “shoe.”
2. Offer them as chew toys for your teething baby ferret. Just make sure to remove the aftermarket adornments (charms, bows, bedazzlements). Those are choke hazards, you know.
3. Wear them while drinking Kool-Aid and choosing the perfect purple shroud for the next Hale-Bopp Comet. Please, take your Croc-wearing children with you.
4. Donate them to be used as foot/hand holds on a climbing wall for underprivileged youth. Do not donate them to children who need shoes. Those children are better off barefoot.
5. Melt down your Crocs and use the patented Croslite™ material to fuel the oversized SUV you use to take your little Disney Crocs-wearing Jack and Jill to soccer practice.
6. Make colorful and odor-resistant dildos, butt plugs and other pleasure-inducing devices. According to a number of podiatrists, Croslite™ has “purported medical benefits.”
7. Don them for authentic and convincing bedroom role-play: You be Kim Jong Il, and I'll be George W. Bush (he prefers the ominous black version with white ankle socks). If it's a ménage aux trois, one person can be Rosie O'Donnell.—Justin Roberts, Enrique Limón and Aaryn Belfer
Lies about San Diego that tourists will believe
1. Although Balboa Park was initially built for a 20th century expo, tourists are surprisingly gullible regarding its origins. Telling them that it was a summer home for the Queen of Spain, built by enslaved Aztecs, works more often than you'd expect.
2. Send them in search of the infamous “Munchkin Houses” in La Jolla. This widespread urban rumor has even had locals (myself, for example) circling the area, desperate to find any proof of its validity.
3. Make up a ghost story about Old Town's “haunted” Whaley house. Then see how long it takes the story to make its way into the house's official pamphlet. Average time is two to three weeks.
4. Gov. Schwarzenegger is rumored to own local property. No one knows exactly where. To a tourist, just about any nice house can be passed off as his summer mansion, and just about any field could be his personal firing range.
5. Sing the praises of the trolley system, telling tourists that it passes through all of the coolest parts of the city. After a tour of faceless malls and slummy suburbs, they're not likely to return.—Ben Greenstein
Ways to torture tourists
1. Market Hillcrest's neighborhood eccentric, Crazy Mary, as an “alternative tour guide.”
2. Tell them, “Sure, you can take the trolley to Pacific Beach.”
3. Tell them to go to Pokéz and ask for extra salsa.
4. Tell them to head north from Downtown on Highway 163 and take the University exit for great food.
5. Tell them that the College Area is a really great place to hang out.
6. Tell them that they recently made driving back across the border from Tijuana “a breeze.”
7. Tell them that the Navy strongly encourages people to speed through checkpoints at its military installations in Coronado and Point Loma.
8. Tell them that the best shopping can be found at the Sports Arena swap meet.
9. Tell them to enjoy the “scenic drive” down I-5 South at 4 p.m. —Dave Tow and Nathan Dinsdale
Summer-related craigslist postings
PINK PLASTIC LAWN FLAMINGOS: “three pink plastic lawn flamingos, the momma, the daddy and two babies. in good shape except the momma has a bullet hole. will trade for a good dog or weed eater, will also consider any kind of alcohol as long as it ain't been opened up.”
Fixed Gear Death Trap: “I'm selling a complete fixed gear. It is totally ready to ride and will probably kill you. I pushed it into a bike shop recently to have the wheel trued. At the bottom of my receipt it read, ‘My advice—get a new bike'. So, I am. And maybe you are, too…”
To the guy sailing across Mission Bay with a porch umbrella: “… I've never seen anyone windsurf with a porch umbrella for a sail, boldly charging across the bay like a cross between Admiral Nelson and Mary Poppins. I was amazed—you didn't just sail downwind, I swear I saw you tacking…”
5/4-5/17: The Tantric Art Of Lap Dancing May 20 7-9pm RSVP NOW Couples: “May is here and summer is almost here. We have some great workshops for couples and women. I am working with Tantra Teacher Steven Jay and exotic pole dance teacher Rebecca… Get $10.00 if you sign up for the Exotic Dance Experience and the Tantra Lap Dance Connection. $5.00 OFF the BJ/Hand Job Workshop.”
Need a summer boyfriend?—26 (Hillcrest): “Ladies, I've recently put it into my head that I'm moving to New York City this fall to pursue my passion, follow my heart, and generally just have an adventure. In the meantime, I'm looking for someone special to keep me company, go shopping with, and do a few last things in San Diego… I'm not looking for an LTR, unless you'd consider moving to NYC, too…” where's our 420 friends????????????????? mw4m (City of San Diego): “got a few response and we responded back but still waiting to find more stoner friends,,like reggae !!!!!!!!! getting natural in our backyard, hanging out with our fire place in our backyard at night !!!!!!!!!!! cum on stoner ppl,,,lets party...summer is almost here and lets get going … would like friends that can have an intelligent talk so dont be a dumb stoner...so,,sun, bud, backyard, and us...dont be surprised if parties at our house just spring up....”
HATE SQUIRRELS?? Then don't apply. $21hr. for Tree Crews Full or PT (San Diego): “FULL AND SUMMER/PART-TIME available. Drivers and Team Leaders- up to $21 an hour. Drivers- must have valid license and NO major driving record issues. Chainsaw experienced preferred but not required…”—compiled by Justin Roberts
Happy hours that go later and cook longer, so you don't have to
1. Costa Brava—Half-price tapas menu, montaditos (small sandwiches) for $3, stellar sangria for $2 glass/$8 pitcher. 4 to 7 p.m., Monday through Sunday. 1653 Garnet Ave., Pacific Beach. 858-273-1218.
2. Islands Sushi and Pupu Bar—Above-par quality for happy-hour sushi, including two-for-one handrolls plus drink specials. Yum, spicy scallops and salmon skin. 5 to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Hanalei Hotel, 2270 Hotel Circle Drive North, Mission Valley. 619-297-1101.
3. Bite—Champagne cocktails for $4.50, 25-percent off wine bottles and gourmet bar snacks. 5 to 7 p.m., daily. 1417 University Ave., Hillcrest. 619-299-2483.
4. J6Bar—Mini Brandt beef sliders with herbed pommes frites for $6, $3 off specialty cocktails. 5 to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday. 616 J St., Downtown. 619-531-8744.
5. Hive Sushi Lounge—Nigiri, edamame and miso soup for 99 cents, $2.49 rolls and large sake. 5 to 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday. 1409 C St., East Village. 619-702-6010.
6. Prado—Margaritas for $3.50, half-off appetizers. Don't miss the calamari. 4 to 6 p.m. and 8 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. Live music 8 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday. 1549 El Prado, Balboa Park. 619-557-9441.
7. Tapenade—Half-price menu in the bar. The wild mushroom raviolis are insane. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. Live jazz on Thursdays. 7612 Fay Ave., La Jolla. 858-551-7500.—Candice Woo
Cool and easy picnic items
1. Cucumber sandwiches—Peel the cukes and slice them. Spread some cream cheese onto bread and sprinkle on dill weed to taste (fresh or dried). Cut off the crusts and, if you're feeling fancy, slice into triangles.
2. Curry chicken salad—Cook two chicken breasts and then slice into cubes. Stir together the chicken, mayo (low-fat tastes just as good as regular) and curry powder. Add a dash of salt. Don't be afraid to go a little crazy with the curry. Diced celery is optional. Sprinkle in some golden raisins and spread it all on bread or a piece of Romaine lettuce.
3. Watermelon feta salad—Mix together 2 cups cubed, seedless watermelon, 1/2 cup sliced strawberries and 1/2 cup sliced cucumber. Mix in balsamic vinegar to taste. Top it off with 1/2 cup feta cheese, 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil and a handful of dried cranberries. Serves two.
4. Vodka blocks—Like vodka shots, but with Knox gelatin added to the mix to so the Jello's not so jiggly.—Kelly Davis
Things to cook over a fire
1. Skewer sausages (e.g., bratwursts from Sausage King) and roast until casings are brown and meat is heated through. If the sausages aren't pre-cooked, parboil them first so no one gets sick. Nostalgic favorite, the TJ hotdog: wrap a hot dog in bacon before skewering. So wrong but, oh, so right.
2. Cut sushi-grade fish (i.e. yellowfin tuna from Catalina Offshore) into 2-inch cubes, skewer and just barely sear over flames. Dip into pre-mixed soy sauce and wasabi.
3. Skewer pre-marinated, quick-cooking protein (shrimp, scallops, tofu) and veggies (peppers, squash, tomatoes) together and roast until cooked through.
4. Skewer seasonal fruit (bananas, stone fruit, strawberries, pineapple, etc.). Brush with a mix of vanilla extract, brown sugar, cinnamon and dark rum and roast until caramelized. Note: alcohol is combustible; do not light your face on fire. —Candice Woo
Things to cook in the embers/coals
1. Season halved heads of garlic with olive oil, salt and pepper, wrap in foil and roast in the embers until soft. Spread on bread. Faint.
2. Cut a slit down the length of an unpeeled banana (do not cut all the way through). Stuff the banana with chocolate chips and marshmallows. Wrap in foil and cook until the banana is warm and the chocolate is melted.
3. Line heavy-duty foil packets with thin slices of lemon. Top with thin fish filets, chopped herbs, olive oil, salt and pepper and a splash of that wine you're drinking. Lay packets seam side up on embers. Cook seven to 10 minutes.
4. Roll refrigerator biscuits into long snake-like shapes. Rub with soft butter. Wrap around a foil-wrapped stick or tines of a campfire fork. Rotate over coals until brown. Dip in honey. Swoon. —Candice Woo
Ways to embarrass yourself at the neighborhood BBQ
1. Eat a pot brownie after seven bottles of Miller High Life, as opposed to before.
2. Ask the neighbor who lives down the street when she's due. When she tells you she's not pregnant, laugh and say, “No, really, when's the baby coming?”
3. Be the first to suggest skinny-dipping in the backyard kiddie pool.
4. One word: Kegstand!
5. Wear your new, fancy, “Cypress”-style Crocs-pumps.
6. “Who wants to play Strip Croquet?!?!”—Justin Roberts and Aaryn Belfer
Places to get milkshakes
1. Mariposa Homemade Ice CreamMost popular shake: Frozen Hot Chocolate.Made with: Mexican chocolate ice cream.Added bonus: All ice cream, sherbet and sorbet is made and sold in the same little shop.Indulge at: 3450 Adams Ave., Normal Heights. 619-284-5197 .
2. Studio DinerMost popular shake: Gone Bananas.Made with: Vanilla ice cream, peanut butter and banana.Added bonus: Located on the lot of a working movie and TV studio, Studio Diner is open 24 hours if you're in need of a midnight milkshake.Indulge at: 4701 Ruffin Road, Kearny Mesa. 858-715-6400 .
3. Classics Malt ShopMost popular shake: Rainbow Sherbet Freeze.Made with: Rainbow sherbet and Sprite.Added bonus: On top of great chocolate malts (another favorite), Classics Malt Shop hosts hot-rod shows every Friday around 5 p.m.Indulge at: 3615 Midway Drive, Point Loma. 619-226-1600.
4. Corvette DinerMost popular shake: Elvis Shake.Made with: Vanilla ice cream, marshmallow, peanut butter and banana.Added bonus: Waitresses in bouffants and poodle skirts. Also try the Rootbeer Float.Indulge at: 3946 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. 619-542-1476.
5. Ritual TavernMost popular shake: Stone Smoked Porter Shake.Made with: Vanilla ice cream and Stone Smoked Porter topped with shaved chocolate.Added bonus: Isn't getting buzzed off a shake enough of a bonus? Note: must be at least 21 years old to partake. Sorry, kids.Indulge at: 4095 30th St., North Park. 619-283-1618.
6. Café ItaliaMost popular shake: Café Emmeline.Made with: Espresso gelato and two shots of espresso.Added bonus: Sidewalk seating for summer sipping and occasional live music.Indulge at: 1704 India St., Little Italy. 619-234-6767.
7. Beef ‘N Bun Whistle StopMost popular shake: Chocolate Peanut Butter.Made with: Vanilla milk, chocolate ice cream and peanut butter.Added bonus: Shakes are your best bet, but Beef ‘N Bun also serves up a mean fried zucchini (with ranch).Indulge at: 2477 Fletcher Pkwy., El Cajon. 619-465-0767.
8. FatburgerMost popular shake: Peanut Butter Shake.Made with: Vanilla ice cream and a four-pack of Nutter Butter cookies topped with whipped cream.Added bonus: Fatburger's CEO may be a convicted felon, but burgers and jukeboxes can't be all bad.Indulge at: 4516 Mission Blvd., Pacific Beach. 858-581-1955.—Athena Davis
Restaurants opening this summer
1. Cardamom Café & Bakery—30th and Upas in North Park. First it was going to open in March, then April. We're waiting….
2. The Linkery—30th Street and North Park Way. Everyone's favorite sausage spot is moving a mile or so north, and to a bigger spot.
3. Sea Rocket Bistro—3382 30th St., South Park. Sea Rocket's moving in to The Linkery's old spot. The website, searocket bistro.com, hints at seafood.
4. Bubbles—6502 El Cajon Blvd., Bostonia. The farmers market and mail-order British food biz has plans to open a restaurant. www.bubblesgourmet.com.
5. Beard Papa's—The foodies are already drooling at the thought of the “cracktastic” (as Candice puts it) cream puffs. Opening soon in Plaza Bonita shopping mall.
6. Mukashi—This sushi and seafood market, located in Bankers Hill, has had a “coming soon” sign up for awhile. 2706 Fifth Ave. www.mukashisandiego.com.
7. Olivetta Wine Bar—Opening where the Mission Hills Café used to be (808 West Washington Ave.), expect wine (duh) and Mediterranean cuisine.
8. Papa Nanou—Another new Mission Hills spot (4020 Goldfinch St.), this one's from Philippe Beltran, the guy who brought San Diego Bleu Boheme and Vagabond.
9. Tender Greens—The menu consists of “simple salads,” “big salads” and “comfort soups.” Eat here and make mom smile. 2400 Historic Decatatur Road, Liberty Station. www.tendergreensfood.com.
10. Cowboy Star—The “bar and butcher shop” has been slated to open for almost a year. The website, www.thecowboystar.com, says Spring 2008. 640 10th Ave., East Village.
11. El Camino Taqueria—Located next to Rebecca's Coffee House (Juniper and 30th streets), we're digging the funky neon-pink sign.
12. 3rd Corner Bistro—Yay! A second location for our fave O.B. wine bar. Opening soon at 897 South Coast Hwy 101, Suite F-104, Encinitas.
14. Pizza Gourmet Express—We're always ready to welcome a new pizza joint to town. Let the quest for pizza supremacy continue! 4615 Park Blvd., University Heights.
13. PinkBerry: Pinkberry, we've grown weary of waiting for you to open in Hillcrest. And, meanwhile, dozens of yogurt stores have popped up, all competing for our love. Yog-Art's still our fave.—Kelly Davis and Candice Woo
Out-of-town restaurants that are worth the drive
1. Blue Jay Lodge—As far as we know, it's the only restaurant and bar atop Mt. Laguna. Think Country Bear Jamboree meets Northern Exposure. Open only on weekends. 10600 Sunrise Highway, Mount Laguna. www.blue jaysandiego.com.
2. The Tin Fish, IB Pier—Sure, it's not too far from San Diego proper, but it's the drive-then-walk factor that makes this a road trip. Besides, restaurants on piers are cool. 910 Seacoast Drive, Imperial Beach. 619-628-8414. 3. Del Dios County Store—Located on the edge of Lake Hodges, Del Dios is a local institution that underwent a makeover not too long ago. White truffle fries? Yes, please. 20154 Lake Drive, Escondido. 760-489-4800. www.stevensrestaurantgroup.com.
4. Hernandez Hideaway—Del Dios' sister restaurant, this Mexican-food spot is known for its margaritas. 19320 Lake Drive, Escondido. 760-746-1444. www.stevensrestaurant group.com
5. Major's Diner—New York band Matt Pond PA lists this spot as one of its influences. Go find out why. 28870 Old Highway 80, Pine Valley. 619-473-9969.
6. Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens—There are indeed gardens here at this airy, organic spot. The dinner menu is mighty impressive, if a bit pricey, but take a look at CEO Greg Koch's reasoning (on the website) for using only top-notch ingredients. 1999 Citracado Pkwy, Escondido. 760-471-4999. www.stoneworldbistro.com.
7. Dudley's Bakery & Restaurant—Sure, everyone knows about Dudley's, and you can find their stuff at Henry's Market, but it totally tastes better when you buy it straight from the source. 30218 Highway 78, Santa Ysabel, 760-765-0488. www.dudleysbakery.com.
8. Rongbranch Café—Among the hit-and-miss restaurants in Julian, this is said to be one of the best. If you dig a fried pickle, this is the place to go. 2722 Washington St., Julian. 760-765-2265.—Kelly Davis
Places to chow down while standing up
La Tiendita—Birria, buche and carnitas tacos for $1.99 each. Go inside the market and ask them to pop the cap on a Mexican coke, find a railing to lean against and chew. 3851 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., Clairemont. 858-270-2221.
Tamales Las Delicias—For the price of a mere few songs on the jukebox, fill your belly with warm, steaming masa before you head across the street for drinks at the Turf Club. Corner of 25th and C streets, Golden Hill.
Mariscos Kiko's Place—Stand and slurp a pescado à la diabla taco, grilled fish and onions in a spicy sauce, then walk steps to the Tamales el Mexicano cart in front of the El Cajon Blvd Market for a pineapple tamal. 3504 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights.
Rico y Exquisito Tamales—Before you walk into North Park Produce and shop on an empty stomach, unpeel a pork or chicken Oaxacan tamale from its fragrant banana leaf and inhale. $1.50 each. 3551 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights.
Mariscos German—Ever eaten smoked marlin? It's deliciously meaty and one of the best things at this seafood-taco truck. Grab a soda from the cooler or, shhh, a beer from the adjacent liquor store. 3505 University Ave., City Heights.
La Princesita—This pristinely clean truck parks in the lot of Joe's 99-cent store, and the tacos cost just a few cents more than the wares sold inside. Except here, you get a lot more value for your money with amazing al pastor, cabeza and lengua tacos. 6882 Linda Vista Road, Linda Vista.
Six summer shopping events
1. Commune Wednesdays (held at various bars around town) is a cool and collaborative event, held every last Wednesday of the month, with local bands, DJs, artists and fashion designers teaming up for a good time. On May 28, enjoy music by The Howls and DJ Ryan, an art show by Kenny King and a trunk show by Copper Junction Jewelry and Mesh Boutique. www.my space.com/commune wednesdays.
2. From noon to 5 p.m. every first Sunday of the month, the fashion mavens that make up the new North Park Craft Mafia set up shop at Filter (formerly The Other Side Coffeehouse, 4096 30th St. in North Park). Stop in to check out the café's new décor and menu and pick up some handmade jewelry, clothing, pet accessories and purses, too. Check www.sandiegonorth parkcraftmafia.com for updates.
3. The date's not been set, but Frock You, one of our favorite local vintage spots, is planning its annual yard sale for sometime in July or August. Stop by the store (4121 Park Blvd., Hillcrest) or go to www.frockyouvintage.com to sign up for the mailing list so you don't miss out on the deals.
4. Magpie's monthly art shows and late-night shopping events were good places to hang during the warm summer months. Junc Boutique, which has replaced Magpie but is carrying on the vintage-and-new-clothes theme, is also hosting nighttime events. On Saturday, June 7, from 6 to 10 p.m., check out art from Paige Luneau and pick up a new outfit while you're there.
5. Three stupendous words: Vintage Music Fest. The details are still being hammered out, but from noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, July 20, all things vintage-themed—fashion, music and even food—will be celebrated at this first-ever happening at the Silver Gate Masonic Lodge (3795 Utah St. in North Park) and along North Park Way. Visit vintage musicfest.com for details.
6. Jep Boutique in La Jolla (7501 La Jolla Blvd.) has re-started its “Manic Monday” sales—one random Monday each month—when everything in the store is 10 percent off and you get deals on certain items (the most recent sale included 15 percent off all swimwear). Send an e-mail to thegirls@jepbou tique.com to get on the mailing list or visit www.jepboutique.com.—Kinsee Morlan and Kelly Davis
Outdoor movie screenings
1. Cinema Under the Stars—Choose from ergonomic lounge chairs or café tables for two (with ottomans—how cool is that?). Summer films include What's Eating Gilbert Grape (May 31), The Big Sleep (June 12-13), Raising Arizona (June 21-22) and Some Like it Hot (July 3-6). 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. www.topspresents.com.
2. Screen on the Green—The family-friendly summer series, held every Thursday on the lawn next to the Museum of Art in Balboa Park, kicks off July 31 with The Shop Around the Corner and concludes Aug. 28 with Paper Moon. www.balboapark.org.
3. Parking Lot Pictures—You bring a lawn chair or blanket and the folks at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego will provide the film and ice cream. The three-film series kicks off Thursday, July 10, at 8 p.m. with Raiders of the Lost Ark. July 24 is Superman, and Aug. 14 is Pee-Wee's Big Adventure. All films are shown at the museum's La Jolla location. www.mcasd.org.
4. The Pearl Hotel—The Pearl's Dive-In Theater, outdoors next to the hotel/restaurant's saltwater pool, is especially nice in the summer. Films start at 8 p.m. every Wednesday. Upcoming: Juno (June 4), Flamingo Kid (June 11). 1410 Rosecrans St., Point Loma. www.the pearlsd.com.
5. San Diego Film Festival's 35MM—Held the second Tuesday of each month at the Beach at the W Hotel (421 West B St., Downtown), the series merges film, music and art around a central theme. June's theme is surfing, July's is “green” and August is “soundtrack.” www.sdff.org.
6. Cinevelo—We're not sure when it starts (the deets are still being worked out), but plans are to show films at the Balboa Park velodrome. To keep in-the-know, sign up for the mailing list at www.cine velo.org.
7. Drive-ins—Thank goodness for our two local drive-ins, surviving despite Netflix and expensive gas. Get all the info you need for the South Bay Drive-In at www.south baydrivein.com and the Santee Drive-In at www.driveins.com.—Kelly Davis
10 things that'll glue your to your seat
1. A bunch of new plays—San Diego's Vox Nova Theatre Company has been making some serious noise in the field of staged reading as it dabbles in full productions, and with that kind of momentum, it's not about to take the summer off. Its inaugural weeklong play festival will present two world-premiere shows and a new musical entry, not the least of which is a full production of Alan Havis' very good The Tutor. The festival runs June 3 to 8 at The Lyceum Theatre space, 79 Horton Plaza Downtown. $15. 858-539-6251. www.voxnovatheatrecom pany.com
2. Double duty—The acclaimed Darko Tresnjak took over as The Old Globe Theatre's artistic director in January, and he's also the artistic director of The Globe's Summer Shakespeare Festival. This year's entries include Romeo and Juliet, The Merry Wives of Windsor and All's Well That Ends Well. And if these productions are as worthy as last year's Tresnjak-directed Hamlet, you can bet this festival will end very well indeed. June 14 to Sept. 28 at The Globe's Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park. $29 to $64. Find out more at www.theoldglobe.org. 619-23-GLOBE.
3. A de facto resident playwright—Playwright Liz Duffy Adams has a gift for language so rare it should be minted. For now, MOXIE Theatre is gearing up for The Listener, the third Adams play in the group's short history. Generations after humanity has discarded Earth for a new moon colony, the Listener calls out to survivors, harboring a vision for the future of Earth. Trippy—just the way you like it. It opens in previews June 15 and runs through June 29 at The Lyceum Theatre, 79 Horton Plaza, Downtown. $15 to $20. www.moxie theatre.com. 760-634-3965.
4. Another bunch of new plays—The North Coast Repertory Theatre's very first Festival of New Jewish Plays is also the latest feather in the Solana Beach company's feather-laden cap. Bluish, the first of the two staged readings, explores what happens when an aspiring Jewish TV reporter discovers his non-Jewish fiancée was born Jewish. The Wondering Jew examines the upshot when a Jewish son brings a very non-Jewish date to his family's not-so-traditional Passover Seder. The shows are part of the 15th annual Lipinsky Family San Diego Jewish Arts festival, sponsored by the San Diego Repertory Theatre. Bluish runs June 16 and The Wondering Jew June 17 at North Coast, 987-D Lomas Santa Fe Drive. $18. www.northcoastrep.org. 888-776-6278.
5. Still another bunch of new plays—This is the first summer since 1991 that Actors Alliance of San Diego won't be putting up a play festival. That's made way for an independently conceived animal called New Perspective: A Festival of Theatre Artists. In association with La Jolla-based New Works / Vantage Theatre, the staff has put together a 24-script program, commencing June 20 and playing over two consecutive weekends. All plays were written by aspiring and entrenched locals. If you tilt toward dark comedy and the absurd, you'll totally like this lineup. The plays will run at Swedenborg Hall, 1531 Tyler Ave., University Heights. $10 to $12. perspectivefest.google pages.com.
6. The key to America's gay phenomenon—Diversionary Theatre has chosen Yank! to open its 23rd season. It tells the story of a war reporter named Stu and an Army private named Mitch who fall in love during World War II. Peppered with swing, big band and boogie-woogie, it explores how World War II became the catalyst in bringing gay men and women together. July 10 to Aug. 17 at 4545 Park Blvd., University Heights. $20 ($45 opening night). www.diversionary.org. 619-220-0097.
7. A big night at the opera—Y'all know the play about the disfigured musical genius who skulks about backstage, pining for opera star Christine. At least you should, since it's the longest-running show in Broadway history and has played to packed houses in more than 100 cities the world over. It's The Phantom of the Opera, which The London Sunday Times called “God's gift to musical theater.” The Broadway/San Diego entry runs July 18 to Aug. 1 at the Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., Downtown. $17 to $66. www.broadwaysd.com. 619-570-1100.
8. A bioplay that's actually fun—No pomp and circumstance here; no fearful and wonderful celebrity name; no ceremony to stand on and no ax to grind. Playwright and actor Charlayne Woodard had a simple, happy childhood; she was thrilled to be a part of her family, and vice versa. Mom's breakfasts; Woodard's first church solo; a poignant tale about racial slurs and how to handle them: It's all there in a thing Woodard wrote called Pretty Fire, and Lamb's Players Theatre has it for ya. July 25 to Sept. 7 at the Paul and Ione Harter Stage, 1142 Orange Ave., Coronado. $20 to $56. www.lambsplayers.org. 619-437-0600.
9. Too much of a good thing—La Jolla Playhouse is off to a good start under new artistic director Christopher Ashley, and with its take on Memphis, it aims to keep it that way. Set in one of the battlegrounds of the civil rights movement, Memphis' original score tells the story of one deejay's mission to unite a divided country through music as his uncompromising vision threatens to destroy the people and music he loves. Aug. 19 through Sept. 28 at the Mandell Weiss Theatre, 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla. $42 to $75. www.lajolla playhouse.org. 858-550-1010.
10. The end of an age. Yes, Sept. 4 is cutting things a little close as summer events go, but this involves some pretty serious news. Sept. 4 is opening night of Fritz Theatre's final Fritz Blitz of New Plays by California Playwrights—and to boot, the works aren't even new. This is a “Best of the Blitz” program, wherein the preeminent works of the past 14 festivals will be mounted, all with the cutting-edge, anything-goes stamp that's colored the Fritz since its founding in 1991. Through Sept. 28 at The Lyceum space, 79 Horton Plaza, Downtown. 619-544-1000. www.fritztheatre.com. —Martin Jones Westlin
Events that will instantly make you more hip
1. Georgia O'Keeffe and the Women of the Stieglitz Circle—An exhibition featuring more than 80 pieces by the renowned modernist artist and her predecessors, including Pamela Colman Smith, Katharine Rhoades, Anne Brigman and others. Saturday, May 24, through Sunday, Sept. 28, at the San Diego Museum of Art, Balboa Park. 619-232-7931 or www.sdmart.org.
2. Elusive Signs—A series of experimental installations by contemporary artist Bruce Nauman, who uses neon lights in unexpected ways. Sunday, May 25, through Sunday, Aug. 31 at the Downtown branch of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, 1001 Kettner Blvd. 858-454-3541 or www.mcasd.org.
3. SummerBeat—CityBeat's very own summer kick-off party celebrating the release of this very issue with a fashion show highlighting new and vintage apparel, music by Transfer plus Shark Attack DJs, Saul Q and Gabe Vega and DJ Claire. From 7 to 10:30 p.m. Friday, May 30, at The Lafayette Hotel, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. 619-296-2101 or www.lafayettehotelsd.com.
4. Blurred Borders Dance Festival—Patricia Rincon Dance Collective presents two performances designed to nurture an exchange between international and local artists. At 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, May 30 and May 31, at Saville Theater, San Diego City College, Downtown. 619-388-3037 or www.rincondance.org.
5. Body Rock—A hip-hop dance competition featuring the best b-boys and b-girls from across the nation with music, graffiti art and more. At 7 p.m. Saturday, May 31, at Civic Center Theater, 1100 Third Ave., Downtown. 619-570-1100 or www.consensusent ertainment.com.
6. Superheroes—A preview reception for Thought to Pop, a display of comic-book art by Jim Lee and the team at WildStorm Productions, with live music, DJs, hands-on activities and beer from Karl Strauss. At 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 26, at Athenaeum Music & Arts Library, 1008 Wall St., La Jolla. 858-454-5872 or www.ljathenaeum.org.—Todd Kroviak
Three events that have absolutely nothing in common
1. San Diego Pride Festival—The annual LGBT Pride celebration features seven stages for live entertainment, as well as beer gardens, a wine grotto, more than 300 exhibitors, a parade (of course!) and more. Saturday and Sunday, July 19 and July 20, at Marston Point, Sixth Avenue and Laurel Street, Balboa Park. Visit www.sandiego pride.org for details.
2. Comic-Con International—The country's largest comics and pop-culture festival is back for its 39th year. Thursday, July 24, through Sunday, July 27, at the San Diego Convention Center, 111 W Harbor Drive, Downtown. Visit www.comic-con.org for tickets and schedule. 619-525-5000.
3. Lipinsky Family San Diego Jewish Arts Festival—A series of lectures, plays, dance and musical performances celebrating Jewish culture, including a monologue by renowned screenwriter and humorist Josh Kornbluth. Tuesday, May 27, through Monday, June 30. Visit www.sandiegorep.com for event listings and tickets. —Todd Kroviak
Inventive ways straight men can celebrate Gay Pride
1. Go on a diet even if you don't need it. Nothing says “sexy” like pairing a skimpy mesh tank top with some size 28 True Religion jeans.
2. Enrich your vocabulary by unsparingly using the words “girl” and “fierce.” For example: “Hey, man, that Jacob Hester is one fierce power back; this sure is gonna be our season, girl!”
3. After getting a good Pom-tini or Mojito buzz, get a tattoo of Cher (preferably from the Bob Mackie glamour-gown era). You'll be the hit at Urban Mo's Sunday happy hour.
4. Surprise your girlfriend by getting something waxed or pierced—or both.
5. Invite your buds over to watch The Notebook.
6. Two words: spray tan.
7. Forget the Pride festival; buy a weekend pass for Comic-Con.—Enrique Limón
Costumes to avoid wearing to Comic-Con
1. Fat Wolverine
2. Burlap Jedi
3. The Hulk—Anders Wright
Comic-Con gear checklist
1. Pre-made sandwiches
2. Comfortable footwear
3. Over-the-shoulder bag for swag
5. Light saber—Anders Wright
Events where you don't have to shield the kids' eyes or ears
1. Cajon Classic Cruise—The biggest classic car show in Southern California returns to Downtown El Cajon for its eighth season, featuring more than 500 sets of wheels and a different theme each week. From 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 4, through Wednesday, Sept. 24, at Main St., Downtown El Cajon. www.downtownelcajon.com.
2. San Diego County Fair—The fair is back for its 72nd year at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, featuring special events on selected days. Saturday, June 14, through Sunday, July 6, at 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar. Visit www.sdfair.com for full list of events. 858-755-1161.
3. Father's Day Brunch Buffet—Take pops to this all-you-can-eat beer-and-brunch cruise around San Diego Bay. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Sunday, June 15, at Hornblower Cruises, 1066 N. Harbor Drive, Downtown. 619-686-8715. www.hornblowerholidays.com.
4. Park at Dark—The Wild Animal Park extends its hours during the summer with special shows and “Journey into Africa” tours after sunset. From 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, Saturday, June 21, through Monday, Sept. 1, at 15500 San Pasqual Valley Road, Escondido. www.sandiegozoo.org.
5. O.B. Street Fair—The 28th annual Ocean Beach gathering features a chili cook-off, five stages for music and other entertainment, a skateboarding exhibition and tons of other activities. From 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 28, on Newport Avenue. www.obstreetfair.com.
6. Nighttime Zoo—The San Diego Zoo stays open late during the summer, with after-hours activities including live music, special animal shows and entertainment for kids. From 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, Saturday, June 28, through Monday, Sept. 1. www.sandiegozoo.org.
7. Screen on the Green—A month-long series of family-friendly films showing on the lawn outside of the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park. At 8 p.m. on Thursday nights, July 31 through Aug. 28. Visit www.bal boapark.org for schedule. 619-232-7931.
Ways to reject Fourth of July patriotism
1. When you hear the “Land of the free and the home of the brave” line in the National Anthem, respond with a snappy “Well, El Salvadorians don't have it all that bad, either, you know.”
2. Wear a burka to casual Friday.
3. At the drive thru, speak with an accent and demand that your Big Mac be served on a baguette.
4. Put on a beret, head to the neighborhood BBQ and make a scene upon finding out they have no Dijon mustard for your weiner.
5. Boycott Ranch and Thousand Island dressings.
6. Form a petition suggesting U.S Olympians wear turbans as protective headgear.
7. Proudly display a homemade, brightly colored “Ahmadinejad/Chávez '08” yard sign.
8. Tell co-workers that no matter how much he tries, George W. Bush will never be half the man Augusto Pinochet was. Jamais!
9. Refer casually to the metric system in conversation. For instance, tell all your friends how many Liters of gas it takes to fill up your hybrid.—Justin Roberts, Enrique Limón and Aaryn Belfer
Ways to crush the competition or watch others do it
1. Rock 'N Roll Marathon—A different band plays at each mile interval during the annual run, followed by a finish-line concert at Qualcomm Stadium featuring Pat Benatar. Sunday, June 1, starting at Sixth Avenue and Laurel Street in Balboa Park. Visit www.rnr marathon.com for registration details. 858-454-6510.
2. PGA U.S. Open—The best golfers in the world play Torrey Pines Golf Course, returning the Open to San Diego for the first time since 1948. Monday, June 9, through Sunday, June 15, at 11480 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla. Visit www.usopen.com for tickets and details.
3. U.S. Open Sandcastle Competition—The world's best sand sculptors put their skills to use, while onlookers are welcome to the accompanying street fair, featuring arts and crafts booths, food, entertainment and more from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, July 12 and 13, at Imperial Beach Pier. www.usopensandcastle.com.
4. Over-the-Line Championship—The 55th annual OMBAC event takes place over two consecutive weekends, featuring more teams (1,200-plus) and debauchery than you can shake a stick at, literally. From 7:30 a.m. to dusk Saturday, July 12, through Sunday, July 19, at Fiesta Island, Mission Bay. Visit www.ombac.org for details.
5. The 31st Annual World Bodysurfing Championship—More than 350 of the world's best bodysurfers catch righteous waves while competing for the crown. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 23 and 24, at the Oceanside Pier. Visit www.worldbodysurfing.org for times and details.
Things you'll spot on opening day at Del Mar that aren't horses 1. Cleavage. Tons.
2. Four-foot-10-inch-tall men and the 5-foot-10-inch-tall women who love them.
3. More than a few guys that you'll recognize from HotChicksWithDoucheBags.com.
4. People whose bosses think they've had a “family emergency.”
5. The single-largest littering of ticket-sized pieces of paper in San Diego County all year.
6. Ungodly, unparalleled, unwavering, never-moving traffic that even a snail thinks moves too slow.
7. Security guards at the entrance of the Turf Club that will drop you Secret Service-style if you don't have the proper wristband.
8. Obnoxiously large hats that will block any chance of you seeing an actual race.
9. More than a few “working girls” who charge more than what Elliot Spitzer paid.
10. That guy who just dropped what was left of his kid's college fund on a tip that “Big Buster Brown” would place. Good luck at trade school, junior!
11. Creepy old men groping the breasts of much younger women. Not because they're perverted, but because they're showing off something they created.
12. Cougars. Tons. College-age men beware.
13. A bunch of tackily dressed, overly pretentious drunken assholes in the Coors tent pretending like they know anything about horse racing.—V.H. McLoughlin
Things to put in your mouth
1. A Toast to Music Wine Tasting—Sycuan Casino presents this fundraiser for the El Cajon Community Development Corp. Includes unlimited wine and beer tastings, live music, food from local restaurants and silent auctions. From 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 31, at East County Performing Arts Center, 210 E. Main St., El Cajon. $75. 619-440-2277. www.downtownelcajon.com.
2. Encinitas Wine Festival—Music from a barbershop quartet, a silent auction and plenty of food and wine are featured at this fifth annual event. From 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 31, at Quail Botanical Gardens, 230 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas. $75 to $125. 760-436-3036. www.encinitaswinefestival.com.
3. Taste of Gaslamp—Sample menu items from a variety of top-shelf restaurants you probably can't afford on a regular basis, with special after-hours wine tastings. From 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 14 and 15, in the Gaslamp Quarter. Visit www.gaslamp.org for tickets and participating restaurants.
4. Taste of Adams Avenue—More than 20 restaurants along Adams Avenue offer food samples to attendees. Participating restaurants include Kensington Grill, Ponce's, Burger Lounge and more. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, June 22. www.adamsaveonline.com.
5. San Diego Restaurant Week—More than 130 restaurants from around the county serve up discounted three-course meals all week. Sunday, June 22, through Friday, June 27. Visit www.sandiegorestaurantweek.com for participants.
Things to put in your brain
1. Philip Gourevitch—The award-winning journalist and editor of The Paris Review discusses the dehumanization of American soldiers at Abu Ghraib at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 3, at the Neurosciences Institute, 10640 John Jay Hopkins Drive, La Jolla. 858-626-2000. revelleforum.ucsd.edu.
2. David Sedaris—The best-selling author and humorist comes to San Diego for an evening of laughs and observations at 8 p.m. Monday, June 30, at Copley Symphony Hall, 750 B St., Downtown. 619-235-0804. art power.ucsd.edu.
3. Water: H20 = Life—Explore the most valuable resource on Earth in ways you never would have thought, with hands-on exhibits, videos and interactive media. Saturday, July 19, through Sunday, Nov. 30, at San Diego Natural History Museum, Balboa Park. 619-232-3821. www.sdnhm.org.
4. George Carlin—The world-famous comedian and king of observational humor brings his brand of biting satire to San Diego on Sunday, July 20, at Humphrey's Concerts by the Bay, Shelter Island Drive. 619-220-8497. www.humphreysconcerts.com.
5. Bill Maher—The host of HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher performs an evening of political humor on Sunday, Aug. 24, at Humphrey's Concerts by the Bar, Shelter Island Drive. 619-220-8497. www.humphrey sconcerts.com
Things to put in your ears
1. Miles on Memorial Day—A day of free jazz performances in honor of Miles Davis' birthday, with sets by The Jazz Ensemble, ESP Quintet, Gilbert Castellanos, Daniel Jackson and Gary LeFebvre. From 2 to 8 p.m. Monday, May 26, at Dizzy's at the Wine & Culinary Center, 200 Harbor Drive, Downtown. 858-270-7467. www.dizzyssandiego.com.
2. Fiesta Del Sol—Belly Up Tavern's annual concert, beer garden and arts fest returns for its 29th consecutive year. Featured bands include The English Beat, Transfer, Venice and more. From 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 7 and 8, at Fletcher Cove, 111 S. Sierra Ave., Solana Beach. www.sbfiestadelsol.net.
3. Mainly Mozart Summer Fest—Two weeks of classical music performances from several of the finest concertmasters and principal players in North America. Tuesday, June 10, through Saturday, June 21. Visit www.mainlymozart.org for times, locations and tickets. 619-570-1100.
4. Mozart Marathon—Violinist Victoria Martino and pianist James Lent perform an entire day of Mozart sonatas, in remembrance of Martino's late husband, Konrad Oberhuber. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 14, at Athenaeum Music and Arts Library, 1008 Wall St., La Jolla. 858-454-5872. www.ljathenaeum.org.
5. San Diego Symphony Summer Pops—Sycuan Casino presents a weekly series of summer concerts with special themes and guests every week. Saturday, June 14, through Sunday, Aug. 31, at Embarcadero Marina Park South, Downtown. Visit www.sandiegosym phony.com for full schedule.
6. International Summer Organ Festival—Concert and theater organists play the world's largest outdoor pipe organ each Monday, accompanied by a variety of symphony musicians. At 7:30 p.m. Monday, June 16, through Monday, Aug. 25, at Spreckels Organ Pavilion, Balboa Park. Visit www.balboa park.org for schedule.
7. Twilight in the Park—A series of 33 free concerts throughout summer, Tuesday, June 17, through Thursday, Aug. 28, at Spreckels Organ Pavilion, Balboa Park. Visit www.balboapark.org for schedule.
8. SoundON Festival—Several of San Diego's most innovative musical talents converge for this three-day festival of modern composition, featuring performances by Nathan Brock, Ingrid Stolzel, Juan Campoverde and more. Friday, June 19, through Sunday, June 21, at Athenaeum Music & Arts Library, 1008 Wall St., La Jolla. 858-454-5872. www.sandiegonewmusic.com.
9. Bird Park Summer Concerts—Enjoy some diverse jams in an outdoor setting on five Saturdays throughout summer. June 21 through Saturday, Aug. 16, at Bird Park, 28th and Thorn streets, North Park. Visit www.npcasummerconcerts.org for dates and performers.
10. Athenaeum Summer Festival—Pianist Gustavo Romero performs a month-long series of concerts of classical works in this 10th annual incarnation, titled Ten Years, Seven Composers, One Pianist. Sunday, July 6, through Sunday, July 27, at Athenaeum Music & Arts Library, 1008 Wall St., La Jolla. Visit www.ljathenaeum.org for full schedule. 858-454-5872.
11. La Jolla Music Society Summerfest—Sixteen concerts performed by 70 of the world's best musicians, including Grammy-Award winning violinist Gil Shaham and pianist Garrick Ohlsson. Friday, Aug. 1, to Sunday, Aug. 24. Visit www.lajollamusic society.org for times, locations and tickets. 760-943-2333.
12. Summergrass—It's three days of bluegrass in the sun, with a horde of musical groups, along with plenty of food and activities for kids. Friday, Aug. 22, through Sunday, Aug. 24, at the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum, 2040 N. Santa Fe Ave., Vista. Visit www.summergrass.net for times and ticket details.
Beach books for smart people
1. The Lions of al-Rassan, Guy Kavriel Kay. An alternate history of Spain with lots of fun action sequences, and yes, romance. All the women are brilliant and beautiful and so are the men.
2. The Fencing Master, Arturo Perez-Reverte. If Inigo Montoya stayed off the sauce, he'd be the main character of this novel.
3. The Partly Cloudy Patriot, Sarah Vowell. A collection of essays about Vowell's journeying to visit preserved historic places. Funny, readable and educational, all at once.
4. The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger. A romance novel about a man who can't control his time travel and the love of his life who must live linearly like the rest of us.
5. Liar's Poker, Michael Lewis. In documenting his life working for Salomon Brothers on Wall Street, Lewis also documents the nascent forces that lead to the current housing crunch. But it's a memoir, so you have Lewis with his dry wit telling the tale.
6. What is the What, Dave Eggers. The author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius took the true story of Valentino Achek Deng, one of the “Lost Boys” of Sudan and used it as the basis for a part true/part fiction tale.
7. Underground America, edited by Peter Orner. Published as part of McSweeney's “Voice of Witness” series, this book is a compilation of true stories about undocumented immigrant workers.
8. Schott's Almanac 2008, Ben Schott. Are you one of those people who hoard knowledge? Think of this as a yearbook of interesting facts.
9. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Mark Haddon. Christopher Boone, the narrator, is a high-functioning autistic 15-year-old who sets out to solve the death of a neighbor's poodle.
10. My Sister, My Love, Joyce Carol Oates. Skylar Rampike's family, made infamous by the high-profile death of his sister many years ago, deals with a new twist in the murder case amid upper-class suburban life.—Eric Wolff and Dave Tow
13 outdoor concerts
1. The Police, Elvis Costello @ Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre (May 26). Actually, Roxanne, you might have to put out the red light if you want tickets to this reunion show.
2. D-Town Tijuana @ Planet Tijuana in, you guessed it, Tijuana (June 6-8). If you need a really good reason to brave a weekend in TJ, this three-day donkey show (featuring Sigur Rós, MSTRKRFT, L.A. Riots, etc.) is probably it.
3. FM 94/9 Independence Jam @ Southwestern College (June 8). A monster bill featuring Cold War Kids, MGMT, The Hold Steady, Flogging Molly, The Ting Tings and Nortec Collective. And that's not even counting the local stage (Transfer, The Muslims, Kill Me Tomorrow, etc.).
4. Eryka Badu, The Roots @ Humphrey's Concerts by the Bay (June 10). The Roots are one of the best progressive hip-hop collectives ever. Badu isn't exactly a slouch, either.
5. Dwight Yoakam @ Del Mar Fairgrounds (June 19). A lot of marquee country acts are coming through town this summer (including Brad Paisley, Toby Keith, Dolly Parton and Lyle Lovett), but there's nothing's more country than playing a county fair.
6. Death Cab For Cutie, Rogue Wave @ SDSU Open Air Theater (June 20). Even sullen indie kids want to get a little fresh air every now and then.
7. Snoop Dogg, 311 @ Cricket Wireless (June 27). The one show where you might wanna leave your patriotic all-red ensemble at home. Snoop's security detail thanks you in advance.
8. True Colors @ Viejas Concerts in the Park on June 27. Cyndi Lauper, Joan Jett and the B-52s take a nostalgia trip that's, in a word, fab-u-lous.
9. Robert Plant, Alison Krauss, T-Bone Burnett @ Humphrey's (June 30). Sure, this sold out weeks ago, but it just might be a good day to float your inner tube out in San Diego Bay and (oops!) maybe the current takes you awfully close to Humphrey's.
9. Journey, Heart, Cheap Trick @ Cricket Wireless (July 15). Whether you're a small-town girl or a city boy, you've never stopped believing. Even if you won't admit it in public.
10. Rockstar Mayhem Festival @ Cricket Wireless (July 16). Slipknot, Disturbed, Mastodon and a whole lotta dudes with black eyeliner.
11. Stone Temple Pilots @ Concerts on the Green (July 27). If I was a bookie down at Caliente in Tijuana, I'd have 2-1 odds that Scott Weiland relapses before this show.
12. Warped Tour 2008 @ Cricket Wireless (Aug. 18). You hate it, you love it, you love to hate it. You also can't avoid it.
13. Radiohead, Liars @ Cricket Wireless (Aug. 27). A one-day Comic-Con for music geeks.
Ways hipsters can pretend it's still winter
1. Hike up the usual SPF 50 to the heftier 75 and apply two coats. A healthy glow clashes tremendously with horizontal stripes.
2. When at the Livewire getting your Pabst Blue Ribbon on, kindly ask the bartender to set the thermostat to 45 degrees. He'll know why.
3. Wear your wool knit beanie 24/7.
4. Sew a line of buttons on your favorite plunging cotton v-neck and pretend it's an RVCA cardigan.
5. Bring frozen cupcakes to the Indie Rock Cupcake Social.
6. Throw a Faux Fur Frock Party for the grand re-opening of Scolari's Office.
7. Curl up under the pool table at U-31, cover yourself with your red and black checkered lumberjack shirt and hibernate.
8. Grab some scissors and turn those nut-hugging skinny jeans into skinny clam-diggers.—Justin Roberts, Enrique Limón and Aaryn Belfer
Songs to put on a road-trip mix-disc1. “You Really Got a Hold on Me,” She & Him
2. “Rockets Fall on Rocket Falls,” Godspeed You Black Emperor!
3. “Teenage Dad on His Estate,” Morrissey
4. “Craftsmanship,” Buck 65
5. “We Own the Sky,” M83
6. “Everybody's Happy Nowadays,” The Buzzcocks
7. “It's All Gonna Break,” Broken Social Scene
8. “White Tooth Man,” Iron & Wine
9. “Boyz,” M.I.A.
10. “Fucking Righteous,” Pavement
11. “Dead Bodies,” Air
12. “Onomatopoeia,” Calico Horse
13. “She Took Him to the Lake,” Alkaline Trio
14. “Part 1,” Band of Horses
15. “Seemed Like the Thing to Do,” Dinosaur Jr.
16. “I Dream a Highway,” Gillian Welch —Dave Tow
Songs to put on another road-trip mix-disc (with liner notes!)
1. “Cinnamon Girl,” Neil Young, from Everybody Knows This is Nowhere (1969). None of the other bands here would exist if it weren't for Neil. He's still kicking ass into his 60s, and this track is absolutely legendary.
2. “Between Days,” Red House Painters, from Old Ramon (2001). Sublime guitar work from songwriter Mark Kozelek, whose latest band, Sun Kil Moon, recently released April, another excellent collection of folk-inflected rock.
3. “Anytime,” My Morning Jacket, from Z (2005). A gloriously uplifting soul-rock hybrid from Louisville's finest. Their forthcoming Evil Urges will be released this summer.
4. “I Don't Always Know What You're Saying,” Ladyhawk, from Shots (2008). This gem from the Vancouver quartet is dark and brooding, but nevertheless deserving of repeated spins. They play The Casbah with Neva Dinova on Wednesday, May 28.
5. “Budge,” Dinosaur Jr., from Bug (1988). The reunited underground luminaries yielded the excellent Beyond, one of last year's best records. Here's to hoping they stick around for a few more albums.
6. “Take the Time Around,” The Boo Radleys, from Giant Steps (1993). Almost completely ignored in America, these Brits melded intricate melodies with walls of fuzz guitar to thrilling effect.
7. “Last Train to Satansville,” Swervedriver, from Mezcal Head (1993). We should be thanking the rock gods that Swervedriver recently re-formed. They're playing The Casbah with Film School on Friday, May 30.
8. “Across the Shields,” Torche, from Meanderthal (2008). Simultaneously one of the heaviest and poppiest songs of the year, this is triumphant metal that we can all agree on. Torche performs with Boris at The Casbah on Saturday, June 14.
9. “Stereo Situation,” Trans Am, from The Surveillance (1998). Instrumental goodness from the so-ironic-they're-not trio. Drummer Sebastian Thomson is one of the finest in indie rock.
10. “Wucan,” Black Mountain, from In the Future (2008). Wind it down and drive off into the twilight while playing this incessant jam, complete with a keyboard melody that'll stick in your head for days. —Todd Kroviak
Bands and artists that need to be forgotten by summer
1. Amy Winehouse
2. Lily Allen
3. Kimya Dawson
4. Mickey Avalon
5. Louis XIV
6. Vampire Weekend
7. Tokio Hotel
8. Whoever wins American Idol—Dave Tow, Nathan Dinsdale and Todd Kroviak
Sure ways ladies can get recruited to join a polygamist cult
1. Let your hair grow long, and when washing it, always skip the conditioner. Remember, the blow dryer and hair products are your sworn foes. As for styling, a thick horse-tail-like braid is the 'do du jour.
2. Ditch your current wardrobe and lean toward homemade couture. Vintage patterns work best. For a classy night on the compound, opt for the understated “1890s Girl's Empire Dress.” As for fabrics, a light denim or pastel cotton blend will work best during these hot months.
3. Get a personalized “I break for mass weddings” etched license-plate frame and proudly drive around town.
4. Go into a chat room and post your thoughts on how the term “age of consent” gets thrown around all too easily lately.
5. Hang out at the La Mesa or Santee trolley stations and make random conversation with strangers about how you don't mind roommates (not even 300 of them)—and about your desire to have as many kin as the Lord will send. —Enrique Limón
Four ways to score a hot summer fling
1. Be a friendster. It's simple logic—the more friends you add on MySpace the more likely you are to blaze through the bases, cyber to real-life, with one of your random “adds.” There are more bases involved here than the baseball metaphor allows, so bear with us. First base: MySpace message. Second base: Exchange e-mail addresses. Third base: Chat on Messenger or Gmail and use a web cam if you have one. Fourth base: Exchange phone numbers. Fifth base: Actually call. Sixth base: Meet for evening coffee, which will inevitably lead to seventh base: Nighttime drinks. Eighth base: Score!
2. Be a loner: You will never, ever get approached when with a group of friends—never. Go out alone once or twice and see how well the lone-guy-or-gal-sitting-at-bar move works. Perfect strangers feel obliged to keep you company. Just try to be as uncreepy as possible, because the stranger's creep-o-meter will be in turbo-alert mode.
3. If you're a chick, rub bologna on your face. Seriously, men are dogs. Not only will they pick up on the scent, but instead of licking your face like a cute little dog, they'll immediately start humping your leg. If you have boobs, you really don't have to do much to score a hot summer fling.
4. Sign up for Twitter.com and spend hours coming up with super-clever philosophical sentences about humankind being cursed to loneliness and alienation. Post said clever sentence at least two or three times a day and patiently wait for the cyber nerds to come your way.—Kinsee Morlan
2 a.m. sidewalk sales 1. Numbers: Twinks and trannies and bears, oh my!
2. Rich's: More sweaty, half-naked muscle than you'll get in the Hillcrest 24 Hour Fitness locker room.
3. Flame: So much androgyny you won't know what you're going home with until you're hitting the sack with him/her/it.
4. Bar Pink Elephant: Where even the straightest of hipster boys turns bi after midnight.
5. Bacchus House: Cuando necesitan un papi azucar.
6. U-31: It may be summer, but skis and snowsuits are still the suggested attire at blizzard-like U-31 after-parties.
7. Universal: Unlike U-31, when going home with someone from Universal, winter gear isn't merely suggested; it's compulsory.
8. SRO: I think Blur said it best: “Girls who are boys who like boys to be girls who do boys like they're girls who do girls like they're boys. Always should be someone you really love…”—Justin Roberts
Hot summer clothing for chicks, selected by a guy
1. Bikini, from anywhere. We like bikinis. We're pigs.
2. Orange v-neck from Fresh (1061 Garnet Ave., Pacific Beach). What can I say? Cleavage is a winner. This little orange number is only $35—we may be pigs, but we're also cheapskates. And yet so many of you love us.
3. Sheet dress, from Factory Vintage Boutique (4120 Napier Road). Factory opens its retail store on July 1 and will sell “reconstructed” clothing. This dress was reconstructed out of old bed sheets (I'm sure they washed them thoroughly), so you can always have that “other side of the pillow” feeling, and it'll hug your figure, which we like.
4. White light-weight dress from Target. Women-folk tell me that they don't always shop at cute boutiques. Sometimes they like to hit big-box store for basics. I had a tough time deciding, but I think this white dress shows off a woman's neck and shoulders nicely. Necks are highly underrated. Anyway, the point is, you can shop at Target and still look hot.—Eric Wolff
Ways to spend your tax rebate 1. Buy two battalions of Beta Fish and hold Civil War reenactments.
2. Purchase a year's supply of T-shirts and tube socks from the 5-for-10.
3. Buy a $20 money clip to hold $580 in one-dollar bills.
4. Put it all on “Black 22” at the Viejas roulette table.
5. Purchase a portable toilet, place it Downtown and then charge people $5 to use it.
6. Buy one tank of gas for your really impressive SUV.
7. Exchange it for Euros.
8. Pay people to take those Padres season tickets off your hands.
9. Buy spinning rims for two tires on your '84 Cutlass Ciera.
10. Keep your home out of foreclosure for another 72 hours.
11. Use it as seed money for a new drug-dealing enterprise at SDSU.
12. Go to Tijuana and buy enough Chiclets to tide you over until 2053.
13. Have 600 McDonald's cheeseburgers delivered to the next gathering of the San Diego Vegetarian/Vegan Meetup Group.
14. Buy back the little bit of your soul you lose every time you read Perez Hilton.
15. Purchase a .0000006th ownership stake in the proposed Chargers stadium in Chula Vista.
16. Buy the naming rights to a urinal at Petco Park.
17. Become a local strip-club legend when you “make it rain” with 600 dollar bills.
18. Plant it in your backyard to see if you can grow enough money to pay off your credit cards.
19. Invest in an order of 500 “I Lost My Job and My House and All I Got Was This Crappy Tax Rebate” T-shirts. Sell them for $10 each. —Dave Tow and Nathan Dinsdale