Author: carolhector

From the Editor

The Argonaut’s “Letters to the Editor” page is one of the most popular features in our paper. It’s a chance for the public to comment on stories we’ve published or to give their individual opinions on local issues. It is truly interactive. If you have considered writing to us but are not sure how to go about it, here are some tips for getting your letter published in The Argonaut. First of all, we ask that your letter contain your first and last name, your address (not a post office box) and your phone number. Liveaboards may substitute a slip number for an address. Of course, if your letter is used, be assured that only your name and city or community will be published. Your letter must be legible. Please type your letter or print clearly. We need to be absolutely sure of what you are trying to say. Letters are accepted by mail, e-mail, fax or just about any other way you want to deliver it to us. Please keep your letter short and to the point — 300 words or less on a single topic is best. Letters may be edited for length or clarity. Sometimes we receive many letters on the same topic and some weeks we don’t receive any. If your letter takes a new slant on an oft-discussed topic, it has a greater chance...

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‘Spring forward!’ Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. Sunday, March 9th

Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. Sunday, March 9th, when it will be time to set clocks ahead by one hour. Many people find that the simplest solution is to change their clocks before retiring on Saturday night. Just like last year, we “spring forward” three weeks earlier than we are accustomed to, due to a provision in the Energy Policy Act passed by Congress in 2005. The hitch is that any computers or other electronic devices which have been programmed to change time automatically in sync with the old schedule will need a “patch.” It may be sufficient for now to change the date manually, but if that is done, the device may “spring forward” again in three weeks. Also, it will have to be set manually again in November. As always, for those with battery-operated smoke detectors in the home, the reminder to change clocks twice a year can provide an easy way to remember to change the batteries in smoke detectors as well. Also, the National Fire Protection Association suggests that smoke detectors that are older than ten years be...

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The early Argonaut: a view from the production department

The Argonaut that you are holding in your hands (or reading on your monitor) is the 1,891st issue of this newspaper, which was founded by the late Dave Johnson on November 25th, 1971. I began my newspaper career at The Argonaut eight years later, so I missed the excitement of being a part of a brand-new publication. By the time I arrived, a lot of the kinks had been worked out. With my background in art and retail, I must have seemed a good choice for the job of “production artist” which consisted mainly of being able to stick little pieces of paper to cardboard. It was tedious, but I loved it. I had never touched a computer in my life; but that was okay because, in 1979, the only employee at The Argonaut who used a computer was the business manager. This “computer” communicated with its operator by spitting out a continuous flow of green and white striped paper, perforated at the edges. Pretty dull stuff. Over the years, the technology in all of our departments has changed — sometimes gradually, sometimes in huge stressful leaps. Looking back, it’s difficult to remember exactly what we did or how we did it in any particular year. Old equipment has been replaced, old software discarded. Much of the story would be lost if it were not for a copy of...

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The early Argonaut: a view from the production department

The Argonaut that you are holding in your hands (or reading on your monitor) is the 1,891st issue of this newspaper, which was founded by the late Dave Johnson on November 25th, 1971. I began my newspaper career at The Argonaut eight years later, so I missed the excitement of being a part of a brand-new publication. By the time I arrived, a lot of the kinks had been worked out. With my background in art and retail, I must have seemed a good choice for the job of “production artist” which consisted mainly of being able to stick little pieces of paper to cardboard. It was tedious, but I loved it. I had never touched a computer in my life; but that was okay because, in 1979, the only employee at The Argonaut who used a computer was the business manager. This “computer” communicated with its operator by spitting out a continuous flow of green and white striped paper, perforated at the edges. Pretty dull stuff. Over the years, the technology in all of our departments has changed — sometimes gradually, sometimes in huge stressful leaps. Looking back, it’s difficult to remember exactly what we did or how we did it in any particular year. Old equipment has been replaced, old software discarded. Much of the story would be lost if it were not for a copy of...

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The Argonaut celebrates 35 years

This week we celebrate the 35th anniversary of The Argonaut newspaper, founded in 1971 by David Asper Johnson. For this special issue a few of us have written down our memories of the “early days” to share with our readers. And with sadness, because it is our first Argonaut anniversary without Dave, on page 3 we have included a reprint of his obituary, that he prepared himself, first published on May 18th. We have also collected a small sampling of news stories The Argonaut has covered over the years, including a few of Dave’s popular “Snoopin’ around” columns. In the top corners of many of this week’s pages you will find excerpts from these stories. They have been chosen in some cases for their historical significance, and in others just for an amusing look at what has changed and what has stayed the same. Reprints of some early front pages are on pages 33 to 40. To read the complete stories, or to research past issues of The Argonaut, readers can visit the Lloyd W. Taber-Marina del Rey Library at 4533 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey, where they have archived all of the past Argonauts. We are grateful to the library staff that has provided this service over the years. As we begin this 36th year, I can’t help but look ahead with optimism. This is an interesting area...

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