Our Readers Write: Puesto, Harry’s Coffee Shop, leaf blowers, pelicans, ocean

Puesto La Jolla has applied to extend the use of parking spaces on Wall Street for outdoor dining for up to five years.
Puesto La Jolla has applied to extend the use of adjacent parking spaces on Wall Street for outdoor dining for up to five years.
(Elisabeth Frausto)

Letters to the editor


Letters to the editor:

No reason to give Puesto priority over other businesses

When the first story about Puesto surfaced a month ago — asking the city to give up 10 or so parking places on Wall Street to help Puesto business — I was amazed to read how a few private sector people thought it appropriate to have the city subsidize their business. This would be at the expense of 40,000-plus La Jolla residents and visitors and hundreds of other restaurants, businesses, nonprofits and government services.

Puesto La Jolla restaurant in The Village has applied for a coastal development permit that would keep its current outdoor dining area, built on the parking spaces outside Puesto’s Wall Street location down to Herschel Avenue, as a “placemaking pedestrian plaza” for up to five years.

As a sample of one who visits the post office two or three days a week — and must often spend extra minutes trying to find a parking place — I was amazed by the audacity and cluelessness of the Puesto request (five years or more of taking over a city right of way?!) Puesto wants to seat customers for 30 to 60 minutes for a meal at the expense of patrons of other institutions and businesses who might conclude their (generally more important) business in a matter of minutes.

From employee parking to stricter parking time limits to an array of other issues and questions, we might even “run the numbers” if this discussion folly continues.

I was impressed by the May 13 letter (“How ungrateful can Puesto be?” La Jolla Light) that covered several important points. Government at all levels has taken COVID-19 steps to help restaurants try to survive the pandemic. As we return to normalcy, that also means the elimination of assistance to individual businesses (at the expense of other businesses and residents/visitors overall).

Let’s hope for the quiet demise of a really bad idea. If not, the average La Jollan has only begun to highlight the absurd.

Richard Davis

Harry’s crash was avoidable with better prevention

The accident on May 12 at Harry’s Coffee Shop was entirely preventable if San Diego made it part of the building code to include heavy steel barrier posts between parking lots and vulnerable portions of structures occupied by the public.

Years ago, a car drove through the front door of the Mayfair grocery on Pearl Street and could have caused a serious accident when the driver mistook the accelerator for the brake, as was the case at Harry’s.

A resident at White Sands was killed by an impaired driver who ran a stop sign and crashed through the wall of the victim’s bedroom.

In both cases, barriers were hastily installed after the incident. Prevention can reduce tragic occurrences like this and perhaps lower liability insurance rates, too.

I’ve lived in The Village for 61 years, owned five small proprietorships and one California corporation here and have seen my share of mishaps. It’s still one of the safest places you’ll find in this populous state!

Robert Andrews

Time to move on from gas-powered leaf blowers

I was delighted by the article “Local groups discuss blowing away gas-powered leaf blowers” (May 13, La Jolla Light).

These devices have been an auditory and environmental irritant for years now, causing both environmental and noise pollution — waking people up in the mornings and making work Zoom calls difficult with the constant buzzing in the background.

Coronado, Del Mar and Encinitas have banned the use of leaf blowers, and [Patty] Kushner and others would like to see a similar ban in San Diego.

As mentioned in the article, a buy-back or trade-in program would help reduce impact on local landscaping companies currently using them.

It’s time to move on from gas-powered leaf blowers. They are a noisy anachronism.

Michael Bear

Pelicans’ ‘glide fever’ is a beautiful thing

Pelicans fly along the water as a surfer takes a wave off La Jolla.
(K.C. Alfred / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

I am writing to thank you for the May 6 article written by Elisabeth Frausto about the characteristic manner in which pelicans seem to love to glide on the ocean, quite near the surface of the incoming waves (“Can UCSD doctoral student’s findings on pelicans’ ‘wave-slope soaring’ give drones a lift?” La Jolla Light).

I have been fascinated by this behavior all my life. It was fun to learn more about it and to realize that a Ph.D. student at UCSD (Ian Stokes) is studying this intensely.

Other birds don’t seem to catch the same “glide fever” about this, and I suspect that the size and shape of the wings of pelicans is a huge asset to this ability of their species. At any rate, it is a beautiful thing to watch.

Larry Hauser

We need to do better to keep the ocean clean

Local beaches have colorful stalls set up to inform visitors to not leave a speck of trash on what Mother Nature gifted us all with.

While it was amusing reading in the Light of growing human organs from animals (“Salk scientists implant human cells in monkey embryos as a step toward easing future transplants,” May 13), perhaps humans should be not killing our ocean.

Schoolchildren and adults alike can sit with our polluted ocean just at their backs. Keep America beautiful — don’t litter.

Alexandra Ashborn

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What’s on YOUR mind?

Letters published in the La Jolla Light express views from readers about community matters. Submissions of related photos also are welcome. Letters reflect the writers’ opinions and not necessarily those of the newspaper staff or publisher. Letters are subject to editing for brevity, clarity and accuracy. To share your thoughts in this public forum, email them with your first and last names and city or neighborhood of residence to You also can submit a letter online at Letters without the writer’s name cannot be published. Letters from the same person are limited to one in a 30-day period. ◆