La Jolla News Nuggets

Attorney James P. Rudolph has announced his candidacy for San Diego's District 1 City Council race.

La Jollan James P. Rudolph announces for District 1 Council race

La Jolla resident, attorney and Democrat James P. Rudolph has announced his intention to run for the District 1 Council seat that Barbara Bry will vacate in 2021, La Jolla Light has learned.

Rudolph — the second-youngest child of Harry Rudolph, who opened La Jolla’s Harry’s Coffee Shop in 1960 — joins a crowded fray that includes five other candidates: La Jolla resident, firefighter and Democrat Aaron Brennan; La Jolla resident, civil engineer and Democrat Joe LaCava; Carmel Valley resident, attorney and Democrat Will Moore; UTC resident, entrepreneur and Democrat Harid Puentes; and UTC resident, entrepreneur and Independent Lily Zhou.

In January, Rudolph told the Light: “I’d love to (enter politics) at some point. It’s been an interest of mine for many, many years. When? I don’t know. But I’ve been thinking about it for a long time.”

Rudolph graduated from bussing tables at Harry’s to, eventually, working in both President Bill Clinton’s administration and, more recently, the State Department under President Barack Obama.

The general election for San Diego City Council will be held Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020.

Former Unocal 76 gas station sprouts pumpkin patch

Normally, pumpkin patches and Christmas tree lots are not incredibly welcome additions to residential communities. However, the one opening soon at 801 Pearl St. will at least provide a temporary solution to staring at the shuttered and defaced former Unocal 76 gas station.

“I didn’t realize that was an issue,” said Brandon Helfer, who previously ran the pumpkin patch at 6710 La Jolla Blvd. “But we’re going to clean it out, cover the graffiti and make it look nice.”

Starting Oct. 4, Helfer said, his lot will sell Halloween decorations and costumes and feature a haunted house in the station’s old mechanic bays. Between Halloween and Christmas, it will switch to pine tree sales.

The side of the property facing Pearl will remain fenced off and entry will be on Eads Avenue.

Helfer said he didn’t think 6710 La Jolla Blvd. would be a pumpkin patch this year, but he couldn’t speak on behalf of the property owner.

La Jolla resident and real-estate investor David Bourne, who owns 801 Pearl St., previously told the Light that construction to transform the former gas station into a mixed-use building will begin in summer 2020.

Alicia gets keys to Razor House

The new owners of La Jolla’s famed cliff-hugging Razor House have been revealed as superstar singer Alicia Keys and her husband, rapper and music producer Swizz Beatz.

Built in 2007 by architectural engineer Wallace E. Cunningham, the 11,500-square-foot modern mansion listed for $30 million last summer. Keys and Beatz paid $20.8 million.

A cutting-edge blend of concrete and glass, the jagged, sweeping structure was designed by Cunningham as a three-story structure to match the dramatic landscape that surrounds it. Employing a cantilevered base, the modernist home hugs the side of a cliff and takes in sweeping ocean views.

It has highlights aplenty. There’s a subterranean garage underneath and a series of geometric terraces up above — including a scenic entertainer’s deck with a swimming pool and outdoor kitchen. The entire structure wraps around a custom courtyard. Perhaps the home’s most stunning space, it features a collection of concrete monoliths around a turf lawn and fire pit.

Inside are touches of white concrete, stainless steel, stone and walnut. Walls of glass line the living spaces, which include a two-story great room, rounded living room, billiards room, library, tiered movie theater and two kitchens.

The upper levels, accessed by a sweeping, floating staircase, boast a lofted lounge and two master suites. There are four bedrooms in total, and the 1,300-square-foot detached guesthouse adds two more.

Josh and Matt Altman of Douglas Elliman held the listing. The Altmans also represented Keys along with Douglas Elliman’s Stephen Sweeney.

Keys has won 15 Grammys over the course of her career, so far. Keys has sold more than 60 million copies of her six studio albums — the last of which was 2016’s “Here.”

She has also appeared as a judge on NBC’s “The Voice.” Beatz has produced singles for Beyonce and Kanye West. The couple also own houses in New Jersey and Arizona.

Youth surfers sought for contest

The Windansea Surf Club is accepting entries for its annual junior surf contest. Called the Menehune (“meh-neh-HOO-neh”) after a mythical Hawaiian people of short stature, the contest was founded in 1965 and attracts young competitive surfers and their families from throughout the Western states, Hawaii and Baja California.

Long- and short-board divisions are offered for boys and girls ages 16 and under — including the popular Super Menehunes for children age 6 and under.

“It’s really a wonderful time and done for the right reasons,” said Windansea Surf Club president Bill Fitzmaurice. “It gets the competitive spirit going and helps kids build confidence.”

The first heat is 7 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 5 at La Jolla Shores. To register, visit

Rady fitness fair coming to La Jolla High

The La Jolla auxiliary unit of Rady Children’s Hospital will hold its second beWELL Fitness Fair 8-11 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 29 at the La Jolla High School Stadium, 750 Nautilus St.

This family-friendly fundraiser features a fitness boot camp, yoga class, local vendors and live entertainment. Net proceeds will benefit the new Copley Psychiatric Emergency Department and affiliate programs at Rady Children’s, the region’s first emergency facility dedicated to children experiencing a mental or behavioral health crisis. The facility is scheduled to open in 2020.

“We want to help end the stigma around mental healthcare so that every child facing a crisis is able to receive the care they need,” said Mary Stopler, co-chair of Rady Children’s Hospital La Jolla auxiliary unit.

Admission is $20 for adults, $10 for ages 13-18; free for under 12. Read more at

UCSD uses new tech to repair previously inoperable aneurysms

UC San Diego Health reports that surgeons are already using a new 3D imaging technology that can repair aneurysms previously deemed inoperable.

Dynamic Morphology Correction uses computerized prediction models — based on the patient’s pre-operative X-ray and anatomy — to build a 3D model of an aneurysm and surrounding blood vessels. This reduces the need for contrast agents, allowing surgeons to work faster and with more precision, and with less risk of kidney damage from the dyes. (In the past, up to 25 percent of patients undergoing this procedure experienced subsequent renal problems.)

“This is significantly more accurate than before, and I get into the major vessel with my catheter within a minute and without any contrast,” said Mahmoud Malas, chief of vascular and endovascular surgery at UCSD.

“We used to spend eight-to-10 hours on these procedures. Now we can do them in half the time.”

Scripps Institution links Atlantic and Indian ocean warming

Researchers at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Yale University report that, despite the 5,000 miles separating them, the Indian Ocean’s accelerated warming can influence rainfall, ocean salinity and circulation in the Atlantic Ocean.

The study, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, suggests that Indian Ocean warming could bolster the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC), a flow of water in the Atlantic Ocean that moderates Europe’s climate. The fate of the AMOC has been a central plot point in global-warming scenarios. Scientists have surmised that if that flow were to slow down or stop, catastrophic results ranging from dramatic global sea-level change to extreme cooling in Europe would ensue.

“This work shows that tropical ocean temperature patterns, by modulating rainfall over the Atlantic and surrounding continents, can drive AMOC change,” said Scripps climate modeler Shang-Ping Xie.

The study’s authors — including Scripps postdoc Shineng Hu — say their finding suggests a need for scientists to take the global influence of the Indian Ocean into greater consideration.

Fire Foundation to award $1k for ‘escape plan’ contest

Through Sept. 29, the Fire Foundation is holding a contest to encourage San Diegans to develop and practice a home escape plan. It will present two $500 awards during Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 6-12).

Two-thirds of American households have not planned and practiced a home fire escape plan, according to the Fire Foundation, “leading to a tragic statistic: seven people die each day in home fires in our country.”

Entrants must draw a home-escape fire plan of their personal residence showing two escape routes from each room and where fire/smoke alarms are located. For more details, visit

Come to your Census for a job

The U.S. Census Bureau is recruiting hundreds of temporary census-takers in San Diego in advance of its Nonresponse Followup Operation for the 2020 Census.

The purpose of the operation, according to the bureau, is to count people in person at housing units who have not self-responded to the census questionnaire, which is mailed out every 10 years. Visiting and counting the members of these households requires more field workers than any other operation for the national population count.

Nonresponse Followup influences how more than $675 billion from more than 100 federal programs are distributed to states and localities each year. The pay is $20.50 per hour. Apply at

La Jolla scholar authors Nazi book

La Jolla resident Mitchell Ginsberg, most recently a research scholar at UC San Diego Medical School, has self-published a book about the rise of the Nazi party. “The Hitler Era: Philosophical, Psychological and Historical Reckonings” — available through — gives historical and cultural context on the party’s rise. “It is a book I’ve worked on since early 1986,” Ginsberg said. “It also touches on the philosophical, psychological, and ethical questions from then and that remain for all of us today, in ways that are to some frighteningly similar to the start of the Nazi era.”

15th annual San Diego Restaurant Week returns Sept. 22-29

The biannual San Diego Restaurant Week returns for its 15th year from Sunday, Sept. 22 to Sunday, Sept. 29. More than 150,000 diners will sample fare from 180 restaurants across the county — including many in La Jolla — available as either two-course lunch menus or three-course fixed-price dinners.

Popular pain med may cause hypoglycemia

Tramadol, an opioid widely used to treat moderate or severe pain, may put patients at risk for abnormally low blood sugar levels. So states a new paper from researchers at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at UC San Diego. Published in the Aug. 28 edition of Scientific Reports, the paper shows that patients who take Tramadol are at greater risk for developing hypoglycemia, or abnormally low blood sugar.

The research team analyzed more than 12 million reports and, in fact, found a 10-fold greater risk of hypoglycemia using Tramadol than virtually every other opioid.

— Compiled by Corey Levitan from local reports