I wanted to thank the Daily Pilot for the unbelievable article about me and my new store that was included (very prominently!) in last Wednesday's edition ('Old things have a soul', Oct. 18), and again for the second mention in Greer Wylder's weekly column Friday.

Such exposure for a new up-and-coming business is invaluable, and I am extremely appreciative of your support. The coverage resulted in hundreds of people visiting my store the last several days — shoppers, consignors and even people simply wanting to wish me well.

It was very heartwarming and encouraging. In a time when, more-often-than-not, depressing and scary headlines dominate the news, the Pilot still puts regular focus on positive stories, whether it be new businesses, such as mine, student successes, community outreach and support, etc.

I want you to know that I, for one, appreciate that. And I also greatly appreciate the readers of the Pilot who read the article and made the effort to come to the store to check it out, search for a treasure to buy, consign property to sell and even to congratulate me on following my heart and pursuing my dream. The support of this community is undeniable, and I am forever grateful. Thank you!

Hillary Niblo

Newport Beach

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Try giving up animal products

Recent undercover investigations showed male baby chicks suffocated in plastic garbage bags or ground to death, pigs clobbered with metal pipes and cattle skinned and dismembered while still conscious.

Numerous studies have linked consumption of animal products with elevated risk of chronic killer diseases. Animal agriculture accounts for more water pollution than any other human activities. A 2007 United Nations report blamed it for 18% of greenhouse gases.

No humane welfare reform proposed thus far has alleviated the suffering of a single animal. Improvements in medical and environmental technology cannot possibly keep pace with the devastating impacts of meat consumption. The good news is that dropping animals from our menus works beautifully on all these counts.

Harold Undell

Huntington Beach

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Pay attention to your property tax bill

You or your landlord have just received a property tax bill. Every city is different, but you will probably see that most services and things that were long ago included in your basic property tax are now also listed as fees (just an added tax) on separate line items. In some cases these fees can add up to almost as much as the basic tax. This is the trick the politicians pull on us to circumvent the protection you had in Proposition 13 and rip you off to get more of your money to pay for all those outrageous salaries, perks, and retirements for themselves and government employees.

Dave Connell

Laguna Beach