Columns

Apodaca: Students aren't only ones who have to adjust when going back to school

It's back-to-the-old-grind time for the nation's 55 million elementary and secondary school kids and 20.2 million college students.

 The Harbor Report: Swift brothers stay close and fare well in marine business

The Harbor Report: Swift brothers stay close and fare well in marine business

I am always looking to talk with people who make a difference in our harbor.

 The Crowd: SCR prepared to open fall social season

The Crowd: SCR prepared to open fall social season

In a way it is a rite of passage in Newport-Mesa, a harbinger of the fall social season's arrival. South Coast Repertory's annual gala is kind of like the temperature of the January stock market. If the gala sizzles, so goes the entire season of social events.

Barbara's Bits and Bites: La Vida Cantina corrects course

There have been times when I write this restaurant column, which discovers and rediscovers fun places to eat, that I've had less than stellar dining experiences

The God Squad: Prayer can't change the world, but it can change us

Question: Since losing our young daughter three years ago, many well-meaning friends and acquaintances have told me that prayer is the answer. After all, their prayers have been answered! I've seen comments posted on their Facebook pages like, "Thank you for your prayers; he is better now."...

A Word, Please: 'Rules' are sometimes just a matter of style

If you feel like one of the unfortunate few who missed out on a good grammar education, welcome to the club. Almost everyone I've ever talked to about the subject feels the same way — as if they were out sick the day that everyone else in school learned everything there is to know about word...

Fitness Files: Extolling the benefits of a midday nap

Just fell asleep on the computer keyboard. Gave up writing to take a nap.

Carnett: Enjoying post-fair peace. Is it too early to start worrying about next year?

Things have been rather quiet in my Costa Mesa neighborhood for the past fortnight.

Apodaca: Some kids are refreshingly unremarkable

Defiant nerdism has been with us for some time now.

Venezia: Choosing right dog park can be tricky

Are there unforeseen dangers lurking in local dog parks?

 The Crowd: Oceana fundraiser as star-studded as ever

The Crowd: Oceana fundraiser as star-studded as ever

Celebrity connections can make all the difference for nonprofits attempting to attract a crowd to the cause.

Fitness Files: You can't judge a hike-dusty woman by her cover

Seated at a round table at a Starbucks in Newport Coast, I listened, privileged to be part of a new group of woman — not my weekly hiking buddies. These ladies are trail runners, ultramarathoners, 100-mile-bike riders and open-water swimmers.

A Word, Please: A suffix makes a word, but is it the preferred form?

Here's a bit of free grammar advice I found online, offered up by a self-appointed expert who thought he could help all us poor, misguided grammar ignoramuses: "'Firstly' isn't a word."

The God Squad: Readers weigh in on the importance of passing on faith to children

I received lots of comments on my recent column about an interfaith couple having a tough time deciding whether or not to get married — and if they did, how to pick the faith in which to raise their children.

Carnett: The worst of the worst can be redeemed

Kudos for your candor, Mr. Well-Known Crime Boss With a Lengthy Record.

Apodaca: With girls joining more sports, safety is growing issue

Some of you may have heard the story of a Utah girl who addressed a school assembly in March and asked if there were any girls who wanted to play tackle football.

Corona del Mar Today: Artist pulls 'Mama Crusty' from Civic Center sculpture display

Corona del Mar Today: Artist pulls 'Mama Crusty' from Civic Center sculpture display

"Mama Crusty," a spider-like, 650-pound artwork created from recycled metal, is the third selection for the second phase of Newport Beach's Civic Center sculpture exhibit to be replaced after one selection was deemed too erotic and another too dangerous.

 The Harbor Report: Getting some tips from the winners

The Harbor Report: Getting some tips from the winners

I am back from Hawaii and the Transpac race where we finished second in our class, only two minutes out of first place, aboard the Santa Cruz 50 Horizon.

Venezia: Decision not to censure Peotter is bad news for Newport

I've covered my share of council meetings, but the one Tuesday night in Newport Beach was a doozy.

 The Crowd: An and Kang can teach a few things about benefits

The Crowd: An and Kang can teach a few things about benefits

photographer for Friday's Crowd is Laurel Hungerford Photography.

Carnett: The only time I saw my dad cry

I recall seeing my father cry only once.

Community and Clubs: Newport-Mesa throws support behind Special Olympics

It's hard to imagine an undertaking that has inspired as much support from the Newport-Mesa community as the hosting of the athletes participating in the Special Olympics World Games last week in Los Angeles.

Apodaca: CdM needs more than a conviction to move on from scandal

It would be nice to write that last week's guilty plea and sentencing of former tutor Timothy Lance Lai closed the book on Corona del Mar High's notorious computer hacking and cheating scandal, allowing the school to move on with dignity and restore its tattered reputation.

From the Boathouse: Coast Guard makes big strides in its 225 years

Ahoy, and happy birthday to the U.S. Coast Guard.

Venezia: Newport's reputation and Councilman Peotter

Will the Newport Beach City Council vote to censure Councilman Scott Peotter Tuesday, as was discussed at the July 14 special council meeting?

 The Crowd: Annual smoker raises funds for scholarships

The Crowd: Annual smoker raises funds for scholarships

In one sense it was a coming-of-age event. In another, it was a blending of private purpose for public benefit.

The God Squad: 'Go Set a Watchman' offers lessons about human frailty

Q: I've just finished reading Harper Lee's second novel, "Go Set A Watchman." Reviews have cited the lower quality of the writing compared to "To Kill A Mockingbird," and I agree. However, much more importantly, the book presents an opportunity for readers, and all Americans, to begin a...

Fitness Files: Hangovers are more complex than often believed

I admire friends who bask in the relaxed glow of a glass of wine.

A Word, Please: A more complete story about sentence fragments

When I was a kid, the "Do as I say, not as I do" school of parenting reigned supreme. Those adults lecturing children on the dangers of smoking? Smokers, one and all.

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