Page 1

Gardeners, Crafters Forge Connections and Eclectic Gifts p. 2 Local Guitar Heros Pave Their Road to Success p. 9 Chef Christine Issues Readers the 4-and-4 Challenge p. 10

Connecting the Disconnected, Mending the Broken By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor

Editor’s Note: In the spirit of the holiday season, Random Lengths News will be highlighting unsung individuals that serve their communities behind the scenes often unnoticed, working to make miracles happen. Sustained by faith or their determination to give back, these change agents aim to improve the lives of others.


Compton Makes a Green Noise/ to p. 5 Make a Green Noise Development Director Rushelli Luna (left) and Program Director Rhonda Ford Webb (right), launched an initiative to secure vacant lots of land for clean-up and use them as green spaces or community gardens. Photo: Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor.

The Strike Ended But Is That the End?

Clerical Unit of the ILWU went on strike Nov. 26 after talks broke down with the major shippers at the port. File photo.

ith negotiations going nowhere after working without a contract since June 30, 2010, the Office Clerical Unit of ILWU Local 63 went out on strike Nov. 27, idling most of the Los Angeles and Long Beach port complex. Eight days later, December 5, the strike was over, terminals were bustling, and the workers and the union seemingly couldn’t be happier with the outcome—an outcome that still needs to be formally adopted by the membership. “This was a community effort that will benefit working families for many years to come,” said OCU President John Fageaux. “This victory was accomplished because of support from the

entire ILWU family of 10,000 members in the harbor community,” added ILWU International President Robert McEllrath. The key issue was the outsourcing of jobs, in violation of one of the core principles of the Modernization and Mechanization agreements reached in the 1960s. The agreement established the basic foundation for labor peace on the waterfront in the technological era, which was ushered in by the advent of containerization. Employers were “freed of restrictions on the introduction of labor-saving devices,” while workers were promised that the new

December 7 - 13, 2012


By Paul Rosenberg, Senior Editor

Special Holiday Edition

ushelli Luna and Rhonda Webb, the driving force of Make a Green Noise, make things come alive like the vegetables and flowers they planted in the vacant lot on Compton Boulevard at Central Ave. Before we began the interview, resident Larry, “the Apple Tree man,” walked up to greet and chat up the two women for a bit about planting an apple tree. Then he was on his way after offering a word of encouragement. “Larry, who just passed by, always has a kind word to say,” Webb noted. “ If it wasn’t for the garden, I don’t think we would have

Office Clerks Back to Work/ to p. 1 7

Eclectic Giving, Community Building By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor


hile trailing the OUR Walmart demonstrations on Black Friday, I was struck by the scene of shoppers walking past demonstrators with their baskets full of technological gadgets and doohickies against a backdrop of workers demanding full-time status and benefits. Not because of any sense of obligation to honor picket lines, but rather, it triggered a point of reflection on gifts that give so much more than the sum of its parts. A day after Black Friday, I visited Harbor Farms founder, Rachel Brunhke, partly to talk about her garden, which includes vegetables, fruits and edible flowers—not to mention a pair of chickens. She had spent the day at CRAFTED, giving a talk on gardening. A Port of Los Angeles High School teacher, Rachel’s professional life, community life, and home life blend seamlessly. At POLAHS, she teaches an environmental science class that gives students a hands-on learning experience of the environment and food growth. Rachel took the idea beyond the school to her neighborhood and surrounding community, watching how seeds, bought from a nursery, turned

neighboring strangers into friends at the edge of each others gardens. Rachel’s home, like other aspects of her life, is a reflection of her values. Skylights taking advantage of natural light; solar panels for more energy independence; and a garden that supplies a significant proportion of her family’s dietary needs. I wondered what do you give a person that either has everything, or doesn’t need, let alone, desire much of anything that you’d find in a department store? We talked about her years studying in South America. While abroad, she saw for herself the inequities between the haves and have-nots, and the United States’ role in it. “I didn’t start out as environmentally conscious,” said Rachel, as she spread some tomato jam on a cracker. The mason jar of preserved jam was made from tomatoes in her garden. “My lifestyle started out as political from the beginning,” she said. “I couldn’t live in a hypocritical way.” I’ve written many stories throughout the years in Random Lengths News’ Harbor Living Magazine about homeowners who transformed their houses into homes that left a next-to-zero energy footprint—a move many shifted to as a result of a change in their politics. Many made that type of decision as a result of their observation of the nation’s dependence on foreign oil, which lead it into prolonged wars abroad. So, with the knowledge that normal gifts that can be found at Walmart and other departments for people like Rachel would get the proverbial, “Meh...,” I figured an urban garden-eclectic shopping edition of Random Lengths could be of use.

Special Holiday Edition

The Excalibur 3900 Delux

“A newspaper is not just for reporting the news as it is, but to make people mad enough to do something about it.” —Mark Twain Vol. XXXIII : No. 25

Published every two weeks for the Harbor Area communities of San Pedro, RPV, Lomita, Harbor City, Wilmington, Carson and Long Beach. Distributed at over 350 locations throughout the seven cities of the Harbor Area.

December 7 - 13, 2012


Publisher/Executive Editor James Preston Allen Associate Publisher Suzanne Matsumiya Managing Editor Terelle Jerricks Assistant Editor Zamná Ávila Senior Editor Paul Rosenberg Art Director Mathew Highland

Columnists/Reporters Lyn Jensen Carson B. Noel Barr Music Dude John Farrell Curtain Call Gretchen Williams Entrée Andrea Serna Arts Writer Malina Paris Culture Writer Kevin Walker Community News Tami Jackson Community News

Advertising Production Mathew Highland, Suzanne Matsumiya Advertising Representatives Mathew Highland, Chad Whitney Editorial Intern Joseph Barould

Calendar Display advertising (310) 519-1442 Photographers Terelle Jerricks, Jessie Drezner, Classifieds (310) 519-1016 Bobby Fabro, Betty Guevarra Contributors Editorial Office: 1300 S. Pacific Danny Simon, Arthur R. Vinsel Ave., San Pedro, CA 90731

I tested the idea on Rachel first and asked what sort of gifts she would appreciate most. A dehydrator made the top of her list, followed by a juicer, vegetable or fruit seeds, and plants. Rachel’s garden produces more food than she and her family could eat, noting that a dehydrator for her would need to be able to handle significant volume. A quick online search reveals that you can get dehydrator at a fairly cheap price at large chain store. Dehydrators are even cheaper at an online store. At I found the Excalibur 3900 Delux, a 9-tray food dehydrator with an adjustable thermostat, which ranges from 85 to 145 degrees Fahrenheit and 7-inch, 600-watt fan that distributes heat evenly for fast and effective dehydrating. Reading the specs on the machine had the thrill of reading the specs of an American muscle car. For comparison sake, the biggest baddest dehydrator I saw at big box stores such as Target or Walmart were the relatively wimpy 5-tray Ronco dehydrator and 4-tray Nesco Gardenmaster. Those machines are clearly made just for fruits and vegetables. The Excalibur on the other hand, is powerful enough to make deer jerky.

In 2010, Rachel Brunhke and her Port of Los Angeles High School gave away produce they grew as part of their class curriculum. Photos: Terelle Jerricks

Planting Seeds

Snacking on pomegranate seeds and tomato jam and crackers, Rachel revealed that the first seeds she received as gifts were volunteer tomato seeds, albeit unexpected gifts since they were already growing in her yard. Volunteer plants sprout from tomato seeds. Volunteers from heirloom open-pollinated tomato varieties will look like last year’s tomatoes, but volunteers from hybrid tomato plants are unpredictable. If you’re looking for a source for tomato seeds, there’s a nursery in Lomita called, Laurel’s Heirloom Tomato Plants. Rachel advised that tomatoes are a good starter for new gardeners. They can be grown year-round, outdoors or indoors. And if trellised properly, it can be made into shade areas for apartment balconies and backyard patios. As Rachel took me on a tour of her garden, she showed off her raised garden beds and greenhouse equipment made with found materials. Looking at it all, I was reminded of the small business entrepreneurs at CRAFTED and the Do-It-Yourself ethic that permeates the creativity of craft communities.

Skin Like Butter

A week after visiting Rachel, I walked through CRAFTED—I marveled at the foresight of the developers on insisting that the crafters themselves attend their booths at least some of the time. At the Skin Like Butter booth, I met Alexandra Williamson the booth’s creative mind and entrepreneur. She sells an assortment of scented lotions and soaps. She said she specializes in single-note scents, meaning a pure scent, like a mango-scented soap would simply smell like mango-scented soap, rather than mango and passion fruit scent. Soap and lotion aren’t difficult to make, but most people don’t have the technical knowhow (despite instructions on the Internet), the time or the inclination. Skin Like Butter, developed out of Alexandra’s desire to create skin products that would sooth her father’s skin. Her father, an ailing diabetic on dialysis, spent much time in the hospital. A fair-skinned man, who was prone to bruising, he had trouble finding soaps and lotions

that served his needs. Alexandra wanted to use her particular gift to make products that would soothe his skin and satisfy this connoisseur of scents. Using aloe vera, shea butter and a little water, Alexandra worked with a chemist to figure out the balance of oils and water that worked best. “In my family, I’m like the fourth generation,” Alexandra beamed. “My great-great-grandmother sold a creme in the backwoods of Alabama and would sell her own homemade beauty products.” But the knowledge was never passed down, forcing one individual in each generation to sort of reinvent the wheel, not unlike many Americans that have lost traditions and practices with the passage of time. Visit

Patsy Johnson Quilts

Patsy Johnson has known how to sew since the age of 6. She even pursued fashion design in college, but ultimately left for the corporate world of banking, finance and insurance. In 2008, after banging her head against the glass ceiling one too many times, she walked away on faith, and never looked back. Recounting the experience, she said she was tired. “There was something that wanted to come out, some form of self-expression, and it happened with quilts,” she explained. Patsy has only been quilting for the past four years. She was inspired by the documentary, The Quilts of Gee’s Bend. The film documents a quilting experience that had been handed down from generation to generation in an isolated, African American hamlet of Gee’s Bend, Ala. Patsy noted how expressive and colorful their work was, smashing any previous misconceptions about quilting.

Harbor Area L.A. Area Tall Ships Seek Volunteers

The San Pedro-based tall ships Irving Johnson and Exy Johnson are the venue for the TopSail Youth Program. Volunteers are needed for the summer and fall seasons. Orientation meetings for new volunteers take place once each month. The 90-minute meetings are followed by a tour of one of the ships, if available. Come to one of the upcoming meetings, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Dec. 15 and Jan. 15, 2013, at the Los Angeles Maritime Institute DECK House. Volunteers need no prior sailing experience. Training will be offered to all volunteers after a background check is completed. Volunteers for non-sailing activities are welcome. Details: (310) 833-6055 Venue: LA Maritime Institute DECK House Location: Berth 78 Apt. P3, San Pedro

Be a Santa to a Senior

Be a Santa to a Senior and provide holiday presents to those who might not otherwise receive a gift this holiday season, now through Dec. 19. Prior to the holiday season, participating local non-profit organizations identified needy and isolated seniors in the community and provided those names to Home Instead Senior Care. Christmas trees, which went up the week of Nov. 19 in 20 South Bay locations, including the Del Amo Mall, feature ornaments with seniors’ first names and their respective gift requests. Be a Santa to a Senior works as follows: •Holiday shoppers can pick up ornaments from one of the Christmas trees, buy an item listed on it and return both the unwrapped gift and the ornament to the store. •Home Instead Senior Care enlists the volunteer help of its staff, senior care business associates, non-profit workers and others to collect, wrap and distribute the gifts. Details: (310) 542-0563; www.beasantatoasenior. com

Aubrey Cyee Sexton models clothing in Patsy Johnson’s Quilts. Patsy Johnson is pictured to the right. Right, Catherine Goldberg’s Living Spheres at her Sculpted Garden booth at CRAFTED.

Indeed, the quilts found at her booth are complex in both color and design. As a producer of quilts, pillows and clothes, she’s been incorporating the visage of Frida Kahlo into her work. Finding that its one of her more popular designs. Some weeks ago, the Associated Press interviewed and conducted a photo shoot. The story ran in a number of markets nationwide, leading to orders from as far away as New Jersey and Indiana. Her journey since 2008 has been filled with life’s lessons. After so many years of being the one her family leaned on for financial support, for the first time in her life, she had to learn to receive help from her family. She noted that, for her, that was huge. Another lesson, or rather a realization that she walked into, is that she wanted to leave behind a blueprint of living a fuller life through entrepreneurship. To follow Patsy visit her blog at

Sculpted Garden

“I use antiques and recycled garden tools and I make planters out of them,” she explained. Among the items that can be found in her booth are living Christmas trees in one and five-gallon boxes that can be easily transplanted after the holidays rather than ending up on the curb in a green can. Check her out in person or online at http:// At the end of the day, I walked away inspired and more connected that day. I also walked away with the feeling the more ethereal things we desire like community, freedom from unhappiness aren’t handed to us in tightly wrapped boxes and styrofoam. These are things that we build, create and form with our own hands, hand in hand in together. From Dec. 7 through Dec. 23, Friday through Sunday, CRAFTED will be hosting crafting demonstrations called the Twelve Days of Craftsmas, for those who interested in learning how to create gifts and accessories to look as if professional has done it. The demonstrations are from 2 to 4 p.m. Most of the demonstrations are free. But there are a few that are $5. Visit for details.

Applications are now available for the Palos Verdes Art Center’s 2013 Beverly G. Alpay Memorial Awards for the Visual Arts. These grants provide funds to enhance the abilities and encourage the careers of visual art students, working professional visual artists and young persons seeking to become visual artists. Completed applications are due Feb. 22, 2013. Applicants must live or attend school within 25 miles of the Palos Verdes Art Center. Maximum grants in the various categories range from $500 for youth to $3,000 for Masters of Fine Arts candidates. Details: (310) 541-2479;

Holiday Living History

Participate in an afternoon of holiday festivities including tours, appetizers from Mexico and Spain, holiday craft making, dancing, music, toy drive, a visit with Santa and a posada procession from 3 to 5 p.m., at the Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum in Rancho Dominguez. Suggested donation is $4. Details: (310) 603-0088; dominguezrancho. org Venue: Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum Location: 18127 S. Alameda St., Rancho Dominguez

Memorial Wreath Laying Ceremony

Join the Long Beach Rosie the Riveter Foundation for a memorial wreath laying ceremony, at 9 a.m. Dec. 15, at the Rosie the Riveter Park and Interpretive Center in Long Beach. This ceremony will honor servicemen and women who have died while fighting abroad and the sacrifice of Sgt. Thomas Raymond MacPherson. This ceremony is taking place in coordination with the annual nationwide “Wreaths Across America” program on Dec. 15. Details: (562) 570-6932; Venue: Rosie the Riveter Park Location: Clark Avenue at Conant St., Long Beach

December 7 - 13, 2012

Though she is a garden designer by trade, you would never think that gardening work was just her occupation; that instead, it was something lived and breathed everyday. Catherine is a garden designer that does both residential and commercial work in the Harbor Area. It’s obvious, this isn’t just job or hobby for her. She always wanted a storefront. CRAFTED turned out to be boon for her. “This is my first opportunity at CRAFTED to have a home and show off my work for the holidays,” she said. Catherine makes living spheres, that resemble a metal lamp stand with a semi-circle fastener affixed at the top where a ball of plant life hangs. It’s not the only thing that sells but it is one of the striking items she has in her booth. “I make living spheres made from succulent cuttings grown in hydroponic grow material,” she said. “And I have different types and sizes. Just water them once a week, they will grow and flower and get better with age.” Catherine uses found objects, cleans them, polishes them up and incorporates them in creative ways with plantings she’s grown in her garden.

Visual Arts Award Applications Available

Special Holiday Edition

Model, Jessica Escobar, at Skin Like Butter at CRAFTED.

Community Announcements:


Holiday Spirit on Parade in San Pedro

Performers from Folklorico del Mar, mice and soldiers in the San Pedro City Ballet’s Nutcracker, Congresswoman Janice Hahn, L.A. City Councilman Joe Buscaino and his dogs, and Santa braved the drizzle in the San Pedro Holiday Spirit Parade on Dec. 2. Photos: Jessie Drezner.

It’s a Winter Wonderland in Wilmington

December 7 - 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

On Dec. 1, children to adult children played in 20 tons of snow trucked in by the Port of Los Angeles. POLA fielded an army of volunteers that manned game and face painting booths.


from p. 1

Compton Makes a Green Noise friendly conversations, going back and forth and with him telling me on a regular basis that he’s watching it grow and making sure no one harms it. Here is someone I wouldn’t ordinarily have a relationship with, but I do.”

Forging Bonds, Drawing Connections

Mending Distorted Visions of Compton

develop new skills at that site. We will also have workshops, training classes and outdoor education for our students because we have a couple of schools in the area.” Even with the functioning of the community garden, Luna is looking to partner with other, larger nonprofit organizations to address food insecurity in Compton. Whether the vision for the Alondra site comes into fruition depends on the success of the Compton Boulevard site. But they hope they can open the garden by late 2013. “In order to do something good, we need resources,” Webb explained. She noted that the nonprofit got some small businesses to buy in, but that it’s been tough to get the owners of the numerous shipping companies and warehouses based in Compton to take their calls or meet them at the door. While Luna and Webb appreciate the support they get from the city, they note that their presence could go a long way in carrying the vision forward. Luna noted how much of the top Los Angeles leadership turned out to events in San Pedro, whether it’s a groundbreaking ceremony for a new project or the celebration of a cultural as-

set. The city councilman shows up, the mayor, city attorney, a congressperson turns up and says cheese for the cameras, showing the world by their very presence, that those groundbreakings and those celebrations of cultural assets are important. “Compton doesn’t have in place where you can just go to one store and say, ‘We need funding and volunteers’ or where government would be in charge of implementing some type of giving program for the larger corporation,” Luna explained. She believes that if these companies’ operations are going to be based in and impact the community, then they should give some percent of their profits back to the community. Luna and Webb are all too aware that this is in direct contrast to how San Pedro residents are able to leverage community power against a single most powerful entity, the Port of Los Angeles, and achieve community objectives. “We have the steel industry in Compton; we have the Krogers warehouses down the street; Yoplait’s warehouses down the street; Garden/ to p. 15

December 7 - 13, 2012

Much has been written about Compton’s racial divisions and political dysfunctions. Luna and Webb are too familiar with images of Compton peddled in the mainstream media. “I spent most of my life serving children in Compton, taking children to and from the park,” Webb explained. “All parents come to the aid of a child that’s fallen down. All parents offer a child that’s hungry something to eat. So this huge idea that black and brown communities not getting together, I have not seen that firsthand at least to the degree that it is reported in the media.” Webb noted that she has Spanish-speaking neighbors on either side of her and they are often the main ones that leave food grown from their gardens on her porch. This example refutes the suggestion that divisions are so deep in Compton that residents don’t help each other. Luna and Webb are currently working on securing a site on Alondra Boulevard, to build a reentry program for ex-felons and provide job training. “Rhonda has also taken classes on re-entry programs and job creation,” Luna noted. “Every aspect of the community will be involved with that site. “They will be able to come to find jobs and

A dozen local residents came out in force and volunteered their time and energy to install raised garden beds to plant flowers and vegetables this past November. Photo courtesy of Make a Green Noise.

Special Holiday Edition

Community gardens in Southern California are not a new phenomenon, but they have the potential to solve multiple social and economic ills that afflict working class communities, particularly communities of color. In Compton, Make a Green Noise, has picked up the gauntlet thrown by the South Central Farmers group that fought the City of Los Angeles and developers to stay on the land they’ve cultivated over the past 10 years. Webb and Luna’s mission was a little more modest, yet more audacious. They wanted to get the city to turn over to them, and by extension, the community, as much unused vacant land as possible. They would clear the blight and make it productive until that property is developed. Climate change and globalization were issues that concerned Webb. She took classes at UCLA for waste management and waste reduction to find solutions that “will make our communities less polluted.” Webb is the founder and director of the LEAP Action Center (Leadership Environment Advocacy Partnership) a 3-year-old youth environmental stewardship program that aims to promote greater awareness of environmental justice concepts. Before that, Webb was a dean at Aviation High School in Oakland for a number of years. And prior to that, she worked side by side with her mother, Mildred Ford, the founder of Multicultural Center private school in Compton. Aside from education, Webb also traces her passion for gardening to her mother, who is and has been an avid gardener since she became a Compton transplant from Arkansas. “My aunt tells me that blood has memory and I believe it does,” Webb said. “Though I’ve watched my mom garden for years, when I started gardening and started doing organic waste and enhancing the soil, I discovered this was something I could do and it was something I was pretty darn good at, too.” Luna is a graduate of Cal State University Dominguez Hills. Webb interviewed Luna for grant writing and fund development. The two immediately clicked and began brainstorming ideas, sessions from which their idea of transforming alleyways into green spaces emerged. “From the onset of this, I always saw using green tools as an opportunity to improve the community, not just to improve the environment,” Webb explained. “We saw it as an opportunity to address the social problems that ill us, such as heart disease, obesity and then we get into the whole idea of transforming our communities and creating jobs. So this a great tool that would allow us to solve a lot of problems in our community.” Webb and Luna partnered with Compton Councilwoman Yvonne Arceneaux and the Compton Community Redevelopment Successor Agency. “She actually got us started by turning us over to the city manager at that time, who then turned us over to the CRA,” Luna explained. After some months of working with the CRA to fulfill various requirements, the CRA granted

Luna and Webb a six-month lease agreement for the Compton Boulevard property. Webb and Luna envisioned Make a Green Noise as an Adopt a Lot program where they get the city to turn over as many unused vacant lots as was possible. They could convert the blight stricken location into productive green spaces, for however long they would be allowed to before the lots were sold and/or developed. Luna believes that it was this feature that persuaded the CRA to give the duo a chance. “This is a pilot program,” Webb noted. “I don’t believe they’ve ever partnered with a community organization before. “We are in alignment in terms of what their mission and objectives are in removing urban blight and urban revitalization and transformation. They do go hand in hand. But there’s this huge disconnect in the working relationship between the city and smaller organizations, where we get lost and shuffled around.”


Dress Rehearsal for a Future Contract Mayor Villaraigosa auditions for role in Obama Administration as Labor Conflict Ends By James Preston Allen, Publisher

December 7 - 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

On Nov. 27, while most of us were recovering from stuffing ourselves on Thanksgiving turkey, and others were counting down the days to the end of the Mayan calendar (Dec. 21), the Office Clerks Unit of the International Longshore Workers Union local 63 at the Port of Los Angeles went out on strike. The cause for this action was obscured by the corporate media speaking on behalf of the shipping companies, present their slant on the ne-


gotiations to further their goal of “outsourcing” certain technology jobs outside of union jurisdiction. The issue seemed pecuniary and small. Just 51 jobs out of roughly 600 union positions and the shipping companies were accusing the union of wanting “featherbedding” contract language requiring artificial staffing levels. And the mainstream press mindlessly kept repeating the narrative that the strike caused an estimated loss of $1 billion per day, just as it had

during the 10-day 2002 lockout. None of this was accurate. But the value of the diverted cargo was not lost because of the delay, even though there may be added costs to the delivery. Nor was the core issue about preserving jobs for the sake of keeping a job. The issue was wrapped up in something called the “Framework for Special Agreement on Application of Technologies and Preservation of Marine Clerk Jurisdiction,” dated November 23, 2002. It’s now simply referred to as the “Technology Framework.” The dispute here is whether the employers have the right, under current working agreements, to outsource jobs to non-union workers, often out of state, due to attrition, vacancy or retirement. With the increased use of technologies now available, remote inputting and tracking of

cargo could be done anywhere. This has been an ongoing conflict since the OCU contract ended in June of 2010 and has been the subject of ongoing negotiation ever since. In frustration, the union finally decided they had no alternative but to strike, in order to make their point. The reason this dispute ballooned into such importance—a strike action that brought in the leadership from the International ILWU, the mayor of Los Angeles and, ultimately, federal arbitrators—is that it is seen as a precursor to the larger Longshore Division contract coming up in 2014. The outsourcing issue will continue to be an issue in the years to come, particularly in the next round of contract negotiations. This won’t affect just the OCU workers, but the entire 20,000 ILWU workforce from Seattle to San Diego. So this was just the preliminary bout that gave the parties the opportunity to size each other up, and see how the Obama Administration would react and whether the union was organized enough to fight this drift toward outsourcing their jobs. The ILWU stood their ground for now. But it needs to more fully explain its motto of “an injury to one is an injury to all” in fighting to preserve just 51 jobs. Even more so, the union’s considerable ability to rally its members, to recognize and support a picket line tends to distract from its inability to communicate its position outside of the union hall—something that the legendary Harry Bridges excelled at, but which the union as a whole seems to have forgotten. They still have a problem responding effectively to the media, who generally don’t get or are downright hostile to organized labor initiatives. This may involve some training in new technologies and communication strategies, tools for which they may need, oddly enough, to outsource. At least for now, the issue is settled, pending ratification by the OCU members. But the countdown to the 2014 contract negotiations is hovering like the end of the Mayan calendar, which I imagine was caused by a premature strike by the stonecutters, not some astronomical prediction. The Mayan stonecutters were probably underpaid, overworked and when they went on strike were likely sacrificed to one of their gods. It’s doubtful that they had collective bargaining rights. As for our illustrious Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, his involvement in this drama is just a dress rehearsal for his future position in the Obama administration in the Department of Labor, or perhaps the Department of Homeland Schmoozing. He’s a real pro at working the room—a job that’s hard to outsource to just anybody!

from p. 1

Office Clerks Back to Work jobs created by using any such devices would remain in their communities, subject to ILWU jurisdiction. However, the most recent updating of this basic agreement, following the momentous 2002 contract fight, left some potential loopholes that would have to be addressed in arbitration, ILWU officials told Random Lengths at the time. That left the door open for the outsourcing practices that were at the heart of this latest negotiation and strike, which ended “by winning new protections that will help prevent jobs from being outsourced to Texas, Taiwan and beyond,” according to an ILWU press statement announcing the end of the strike. Fifty-one jobs have been outsourced within the past five years, according to the union—a huge figure, given that the OCU only represents 450 workers. The employers did not dispute that 51 jobs are gone, but they push the dubious claim that the jobs were not outsourced because no one was fired. These employers have stated that the workers had quit, died or retired. With the jobs already outsourced, the employers then turn around and accuse the union of wanting contracts that permit “featherbedding,” the practice of hiring more workers than are needed to perform a given job. “The real problem has been an effort to deny their longstanding outsourcing schemes that have sent dozens of good-paying jobs to other locations from Texas to Taiwan,” ILWU spokesman Craig Merrilees responded, when questioned by Random Lengths as the strike headed into the weekend. “They’d like everyone to believe that there’s been a ‘natural’ decline in the number of jobs, but the fact is they’ve outsourced significant amounts of work. That means there are fewer

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa met with the parties involved in the OCU for 24 hours to broker an agreement. He emerge the next morning, tired and haggard, that the parties agreed to negotiate with federal negotiators, and called it progress. Photo: Terelle Jerricks.

jobs in the Harbor Area communities that our families need.” This was not the first strike called in these negotiations, Merrilees explained. “There was a strike about a year ago,” he said. “Early on two of the employers reached

terms with the union and settled their contract. The remaining twelve, including ones engaged in the outsourcing schemes, have been refusing to reach terms.” Subsequently, ILWU International President Bob McEllrath weighed in as well.

OCU Strike/to p. 14

Solidarity Caravan to the Port

December 7 - 13, 2012

Join a caravan of hundreds of cars, trucks and motorcycles in solidarity with workers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. An American flag will be provided to every vehicle. Assembly time is 8a.m. and 10a.m. Sponsored by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO. Details: (213) 381-5611 ext. 126, email Venue: Dodger Stadium Location: 1025 Stadium—Parking Lot 13

Special Holiday Edition

“Dozens of good jobs—ILWU union jobs— are being destroyed by companies at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach,” said McEllrath, in an official union statement. “They’re outsourcing family-wage jobs to Texas, Taiwan and beyond. If companies can destroy good ILWU jobs here, nobody on the West Coast will be safe – and communities in the Harbor Area will suffer.” As reported to its members on the Local 63 website, “The ILWU Longshore Division respected and refused to cross the first picket line placed at APM Pier 400 pending processing by the grievance machinery. “On November 27, Area Arbitrator Miller ruled that the OCU picket line at APM Pier 400 was not Bona Fide. Meanwhile, the OCU picket lines expanded to various other terminals where the OCU is engaged in contract bargaining. On November 28, the Coast Labor Relations Committee (CLRC) met to discuss Area Arbitrator Miller’s rulings on this issue. The Union moved to vacate the awards. After discussion, under the facts


—Friday, December 7, 5–9 pm—

December 07 – 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

Shopping • Music • Entertainment • Food • Face Painting Carnival Games • Jumper • Take Pictures With Santa!


Lead guitarist Johnny Romero, rhythm guitarist Victor Perez, and Cameron Smith on the cajon (pictured with Romero and Perez on the jump page).

Y Perez Pave Their Own Road by: Melina Paris, Contributing Music Writer


his summer, I attended a community event in Admiral Kidd Park and had the chance to experience a band with intense sounds and a driving energy. All I knew was that I wanted to hear more. Romero Y Perez describe their sound as “Spanish fusion music of classical flamenco with a modern twist.” Their sounds are vibrant, alive, and fast. You could tell someone was playing guitar with their fingers on fire.

Yes, the rhythms primarily are Latin, but Romero Y Perez incorporate much more. Their music brings together elements that incorporate multicultural and multi-genre influences such as rock, metal and jazz, as well as, some Middle Eastern inspiration. Lead guitarist Johnny Romero, rhythm guitarist Victor Perez on the cajón (an Afro-Peruvian percussion instrument) and Cameron Smith, have a dynamic sound. Though their songs take on dif-

ferent genres, they are always backed by Spanish flamenco guitar. Each member complements one another and stands out in their respective parts, as they experiment with cultural music with Latin vibes. The trio, each of whom played in different bands, met while a students at Cal State Long Beach. Johnny and Victor paired up only this past February. Tapping into a unique sound, together they were consistently well received, performing

Shop Local. Support The Community You Live In.


at numerous community events. Later, Smith became freed up from his reggae band and after a few jam sessions together, including a well-received appearance at Battle of the Bands at the Long Beach YMCA, the trio was formed. Having Smith on the cajón, they all agree, emphasizes their modern sound with his progressive approach and diverse background. Combined, they have many influences ranging from The Police, to Jose Feliciano, Carlos Santana, Jimmy Hendrix and Red Hot Chili Peppers. Each member’s love for music stems from genres just as diverse. Perez credits classical composers for his first inspiration. Beethoven, Bach and Hanson are his favorites. In the past he played thrash metal and psycho-billy. Smith sources Peter Gabriel and The Police as his initial motivation opening the gateway to playing a range of music from reggae to jazz, orchestral metal and recently flamenco. Romero’s background is in rock, Gypsy and Spanish music. “It always stands out more to me,” said Romero, professing his love for the music. “Carlos Santana really influenced me a lot because of his solos; they’re live and they can breathe.” Perez is the rock to Romero’s roll. While he provides depth with flowing rhythms punctuated by his guitar percussion, Romero deftly moves his fingers with speed over chord changes, showing his skill by playing a variety of styles. This especially comes across on their numbers “The Road “and “Olé” both having a distinct rock sound and driving guitar chords. They also do a great cover of Rodrigo Y Gabriela’s song “Diablo Rojo” and there’s a good reason why. The internationally known band happens to be one of Romero Y Perez’s biggest inspirations. “The turning point for me was when I saw Rodrigo y Gabriela in the 10th grade,” Romero said. “I just saw what I could do with the guitar.” Both of these bands play a driving fusion of rock, latin, metal, jazz and more on acoustic guitar. Each have created their own unconventional methods toward success. Both bands also come from a rock and metal background. A deeper look into each of these bands began to show me other parallels between them. Romero Y Perez continued on page 13.

December 07 – 13, 2012


British Gastropub

December 07 – 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

The Whale & Ale


Welcome to The Whale & Ale British Gastropub & restaurant, located in the historic waterfront district of San Pedro. Gather in the dining room around the oak & marble hearth for hearty British pub fare, such as Shepard’s pie, fish and chips or fresh salads, seafood, roasted meats & poultry. The pub offers 14 European & domestic beers on tap, a full bar & well–rounded wine list. In keeping with England’s tradition, The Whale & Ale is a place where a toast is raised to locals & travelers alike. Live music on weekends & 1st Thursdays of the month. Join us for a festive holiday season in the British tradition including roasted turkey, prime rib of beef, beef Wellington & Yorkshire pudding. The Whale & Ale will host Christmas Day dinner, as well as a New Year’s Eve celebration. Gated parking lot in back. Hours: Mon–Fri 11:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., Fri to midnight • Sat–Sun 1–10 p.m.


327 West 7th Street, San Pedro

Take the 4-and-4

Challenge by: Christine Rodriguez, Contributing Writer


have a vegan challenge for you this time: Create the next four recipes, which require only four ingredients each dish, and exchange that for one of your weekly meaty meals. Feel the difference now and thank me later. This dish is served as a main meal in my home but also serves well as a side dish at a holiday party. With the festive colors of the garnet red from the beetroot, the bright green asparagus tips and the earthy bold colors of brown from the wild rice, this dish is sure to get you some extra foodie attention. You will love the simplicity of this dish as it only needs four ingredients. I always assume everyone from novice to expert has salt, fresh cracked pepper, and olive oil. I do not count those ingredients as part of the 4-and-4 recipes. In these recipes I will share four vegan dishes that use four ingredients, simple and delicious. These dishes are also a part of my monthly menu rotation. Now, let’s get started with the benefits of the local farm produce used in this dish. Drumroll please … beetroot and asparagus together, at last, tossed in a wild rice medley, —oh my. Asparagus, the green spear of nature, helps to cleanse the arteries of cholesterol and contains a natural diuretic asparagine, which aids in the

elimination of water through the kidneys. In Chinese herbology the root of the asparagus is made into a tea. The tea also is used to promote fertility and increase ones compassionate nature. Next: the beautiful beetroot, baked and drizzled with your special brand olive oil. Add a pinch of sea salt, three cracks of freshly ground pepper and what you have is amazing, simply amazing! It is something so intrinsic, with its rings and layers of garnet red hearty beet. The result is a sweetness and earthy, even slightly nutty, mild flavor with a buttery smooth finish that is tender as you slice the beets. At the same time, it is dense and firm, tempting me to forget about the presentation and just eat it steaming hot right out of the oven. The opportunity is too good to miss. Luckily, I made a few extra in case this would happen. Needless to say, I absolutely love, love beets. Truth is I always have. Well what little girl wouldn’t? After all I got to have red lips without getting in trouble since the beets set a good stain on anything it touched and it usually happened to be my lips. I tie dyed with it once, I wouldn’t suggest it though. The benefits of my beety friends are to strengthen the heart and sedate the spirit. Beets aid to purify the blood, improving circulation and treat constipation. Awesome stuff, huh?

This dish is served as a main meal in my home, but also serves well as a side dish at a holiday party.

Continued on next page.

4-And-4 Challenge continued from previous page.

Just to be clear, the ingredients are:

2 beets 1 bunch asparagus - tips & second cut 2 cups wild rice 2 quarts vegetable broth

• Happy Hour •

The Chowder Barge • Try the 34oz. captain’s mug! (310) 830-7937, 611 N. Henry Ford, Leeward Bay Marina, Wilmington

Shop Local. Support The Community You Live In.

Blu Bar at Crowne Plaza • $4 Drinks and half off appetizers. (310) 519-8200, 601 S. Palos Verdes St., San Pedro

Godmother’s Saloon • Live jazz from Mike Guerrero Trio: 7 p.m. every Wed. (310) 8331589, 302 W. 7th St., San Pedro Iron City Tavern • Happy Hour 1/2-price appetizers & drink specials: 4 to 6 p.m. Mon. to Fri. 589 W. 9th St., San Pedro; (310) 547-4766 June’s Bar • Happy Hour: Mon. to Fri., 4 to 7 p.m. $1.00 Off drinks. (310) 521-9804, 1100 S. Pacific Ave., San Pedro Ports o’ Call • Happy Hour: Mon. to Fri., 3 to 8 p.m. Taco Tuesdays. Oyster shooter & bloody mary Wednesdays. (310) 833-3553, Berth 76 Ports O’ Call Village, San Pedro

Trusela’s • Happy Hour: 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., Tues. to Sat. (310) 547-0993, 28158 S. Western Ave., San Pedro Whale & Ale • Happy Hour: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Mon to Fri., 4 to 7 p.m. on Wed. Late Night Happy Hour: 10 p.m. to Midnight, Fri. Only. (310) 832-0363, 327 W. 7th St., San Pedro

December 07 – 13, 2012

San Pedro Brewing Co. • Happy Hour: 2:30 to 6:30 p.m., Mon. to Fri. (310) 831-5663, 331 W. 6th St., San Pedro

Happy Hour Listings Are Paid Advertising


Big Nick’s Pizza Tradition, variety and fast delivery; you get it all at Big Nick’s Pizza. The best selection of Italian specialties include hear ty calzones, an array of pastas and of course, our amazing selection of signature pizzas, each piled high with the freshest toppings. Like wings or greens? We also offer an excellent selection of appetizers, salads, beer and wine. Call for fast delivery. Hours: 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Sun.-Thurs., 10 a.m.-11:30 p.m. Fri. & Sat. 1110 N. Gaffey St., San Pedro • (310) 732-5800 BEACH CITY GRILL A culinary adventure—no passport required. Famous for Cajun sweet potato fries, garlic French fries, fresh fish, shrimp, salads, vegetarian, Cajun and Caribbean specials. Tr y the awesome desserts created by Chef Larry Hodgson. Celebrating 25 years. Open for Lunch: Tues.-Sat. 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. and dinner: 5-8 p.m. Closed Sun. and Mon. 376 W. 6th St., San Pedro. (310) 833-6345.

December 07 – 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

Boardwalk Grill


C a s u a l waterfront dining at its finest! Famous fo r s l a b s o f Chicago-style baby back ribs, fish-n-chips, rich clam chowder, cold beer on tap and wine. Full lunch menu also includes salads, sandwiches and burgers. Indoor and outdoor patio dining available. Proudly pouring Starbucks coffee. Open 7 days a week. Free Parking. 1199 Nagoya Way, LA Harbor - Berth 77, San Pedro • (310) 519-7551 Buono’s Authentic Pizzeria A San Pedro landmark for over 40 years, famous for exceptional awa rd - w i n n i n g pizza baked in brick ovens. Buono’s also o f fe r s c l a s s i c Italian dishes and sauces based on triedand-true family recipes and hand-selected ingredients that are prepared fresh. You can dine-in or take-out. Delivery and catering are also provided. Additionally, there are two locations in Long Beach. Hours: Sun.-Thurs. 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri. and Sat. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. 1432 S. Gaffey St., San Pedro • (310) 547-0655 Catalina Bistro & Express Grill The soaring span of the V i n c e n t T h o m a s Bridge above and bustling vessel traffic on the Main Channel alongside, Catalina Bistro and Express Grill in the new Catalina Express terminal is the most exciting place to eat

in the Harbor. The Grill is a wonderful surprise of great coffee and great food. The Bistro and accompanying bar have made the terminal a go-to place for drinks and food with a view at the outdoor tables with umbrellas. From 1/3lb Angus Burgers, homemade soups daily and clam chowder on Fridays you can’t go wrong. Join us for breakfast and lunch daily and dinners on Friday & Saturday nights. Catalina Sea & Air Terminal, Berth 95, San Pedro 310-707-2440 The Chowder Barge

L.A. Harbor’s famous floating restaurant, surrounded by boats in Leeward Bay Marina. Dine inside by our fire place, or outside on our deck. This unique spot serves great sandwiches, burgers, fish & chips, wings and of course, the BEST clam chowder anywhere! Try our sourdough bread bowl and daily specials. Wine and beer on tap or by the bottle, featuring our 34oz Captains Mug! The new owners have kept the “funkiness” of the old barge, and stepped it up several notches. Watch the games on our big screen TVs, utilize our WiFi and enjoy our XM tunes. THE place for your next party. Hours: Mon, Tues 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Wed, Thurs 11 a.m.–8 p.m. Fri, Sat, Sun 9 a.m.–8 p.m. 611 N. Henry Ford, (at Anaheim) Leeward Bay Marina, Wilmington • (310) 830-7937 • Iron City Tavern

Iron City features a newly renovated dining room and wonderfully restored bar in a modern setting. The most comfortable gastropub in San Pedro, Iron City offers casual dining for lunch and dinner with food service at the bar. Catch all sporting events on seven 50” screens in surround sound and listen to your favorite tunes on our internet jukebox. (Iron City is a supporter of the Black & Gold.) Iron City features authentic Philly cheese steaks, various hot sandwiches and burgers, calamari steaks and a variety of Italian pasta dishes. Hours:10:30 a.m.-2a.m. 7 days a week. Happy hour from 4-6 p.m. featuring 1/2 priced appetizers and drink specials. Free parking in rear. 589 W. 9th St., San Pedro • (310) 547-4766 Mishi’s Strudel Bakery Mishi’s is a fragrant landmark on 7th Street, where it is possible to find Nirvana by following your nose. The enticing aroma of baking strudel is impossible to resist, and the darling café is warm and welcoming like your favorite auntie’s house. Aniko and Mishi have expanded the menu to include homemade goulash soup and a variety of sweet and savory Hungarian strudels, crepes and pastas. The best indulgence is taking a frozen strudel home to bake in your own kitchen and create that heavenly aroma at your house. Mishi’s Strudel Bakery and Café, 309 W.7th St., St., San Pedro • (310) 832-6474

NIKO’S PIZZERIA Downtown San Pedro’s newest restaurant features a full Italian menu, as well as pizza, and a beer and wine bar. We carry a wide selection of beers on tap and by the bottle. Watch sporting events on plasma TV screens throughout the restaurant. Delivery service to all of San Pedro, Port locations, and hotels. 399 W. 6th St., San Pedro (at the corner of Mesa and 6th sts.) • (310) 241-1400 PORTS O’CALL WATERFRONT DINING Since 1961 we’ve extended a hearty welcome to visitors from every corner of the globe. Delight in an awe-inspiring view of the dynamic LA Harbor while enjoying exquisite Coastal California Cuisine and Varietals. Relax in the Plank Bar or Outdoor Patio for the best Happy Hour on the Waterfront. With the AwardWinning Sunday Champagne Brunch, receive the first SPIRIT CRUISES Harbor Cruise of the day FREE. Open 7 days, lunch and dinner. Free Parking. 1199 Nagoya Way, LA Harbor Berth 76, San Pedro • (310) 833-3553 www. San Pedro Brewing Compnay SPBC has an eclectic menu featuring pastas, steaks, seafood, sandwiches, salads, delicious appetizers, and great BBQ. Handcrafted ales and lagers are made on the premises. A full bar with made-fromscratch margaritas and a martini menu all add fun to the warm and friendly atmosphere. WIFI bar connected for Web surfing and e-mail—bring your laptop. Hours: From 11:30 a.m., daily. 331 W. 6th St., San Pedro • (310) 831-5663 • www. SPIRIT CRUISES

An instant party! Complete with all you need to relax and enjoy while the majesty of the harbor slips by. Our three yachts and seasoned staff provide for an exquisite excursion every time, and “all-inclusive” pricing makes party planning easy! Dinner Cruise features a 3-course meal, full bar, unlimited cocktails and starlight dancing. Offering the ultimate excursion for any occasion. Free Parking. 1199 Nagoya Way, LA Harbor - Berth 77, San Pedro • (310) 548-8080, (562) 495-5884 • www. Think Café Think Café is giving downtown San Pedro a taste of sophistication for breakfast and lunchtime, and dinner. Located in the heart of downtown on 5th Street, Think Café’ has been a magnet for local s and business types alike for over 15 years. The special secret of Think Café? Dining outside on the patio. Lovely for latte’ in the morning or soup and salad at midday, the patio is a wonderful rendezvous in the evening, perfect for enjoying a selection

from the wine list. The Café’ also boasts a selection of imported beers. Breakfast at the Café’ runs the gamut from bacon and eggs to eggs Benedict, with a wide variety of dishes to awaken the taste buds. Think Café’s sandwiches are hard to beat. 302 W. 5th St. Suite 105, San Pedro • (310) 519-3662 Trusela’s

Southern Italian & California Cuisine • Bob and Josephine Trusela have been awarded the “Most Promising New Restaurant 2010” award and three stars 2011 and 2012, by the Southern California Restaurant Writers Association. Catering available for all ocassions. Hours: Sun. 5 p.m.–Close, Lunch: Tues–Fri 11:30–2:30, Dinner: Tues–Sat 5 p.m.–Closing. 28158 S. Western Ave., San Pedro • (310) 547–0993

The Whale & Ale

San Pedro’s British Gastro Pub offers comfor table dining in oak paneled setting, featuring English fish & chips, roast prime rib, sea bass, rack of lamb, beef Wellington, English pies, venison, salmon, swordfish & vegan/vegetarian dishes. Open for lunch & dinner, 7days/wk; great selection of wines; 14 British tap ales, & full bar. Frequent live Music. First Thursday live band & special fixed price menu. Hours: Mon.-Thu. 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Fri. 11:30 a.m.midnight Sat. & Sun. 1-10 p.m. Bar open late. 327 W. 7th St., San Pedro • (310) 832-0363 • San Pedro’s Best Guide To —Fine Dining—

Brochure Pick Up Your 2012 Copy Today!

To Advertise in Random Lengths News’ Restaurant Guide for the Harbor Area, Call (310) 519–1442.

Romero Y Perez Continued… Continued from page 9.

A progressive approach describes how Romero Y Perez relates to Rodrigo y Gabriela. After eight years and six albums together, Rodrigo y Gabriela’s music, as well as their tour schedule, is on high speed. Their “fusion” sound blends Mexican and Irish folk music, rock, jazz and thrash metal using mainly Latin harmonies and rhythms. After their North American tour this past spring Rodrigo y Gabriela kicked off a world tour throughout Europe this November that will end up in Australia during the New Year. Rodrigo Sánchez and Gabriela Quintero met and bonded while playing in a thrash metal band in Mexico called “Tierra Acida.” They recorded some material and played in clubs but no album was released. Frustrated with their prospects of becoming successful at home they decided to take off for Europe, where they were well received. Upon their arrival to Ireland on an invitation to stay with a friend they found the friend had disappeared. Speaking no English they had to turn to busking on the streets of Dublin to make a living. This move heightened their reputation and connected them to other musicians. After that time the duo had a large range of original material. Soon after, in 2004, they released Re-Foc, their debut album. Their most recent album, Area 52, released in

January 2012, has received positive reviews. It contains re-workings of their original songs, but this time they play with an orchestra. It’s quite a departure from previous recordings of only the duo on guitars.They collaborated with the Collective Universal Band Association, a 13-piece Cuban orchestra comprised of some of Havana’s best young musicians, as well as the legendary virtuoso Ravi Shankar’s daughter Anoushka Shankar on the Indian string instrument, sitar. Charles Benavent played the bass, John Tempest and also Samuel Formell were on drums, and together they all added a whole different dimension to their sound. Area 52 is a natural evolution of Rodrigo y Gabriela’s international sound. Evolving is the natural order of things and doing so requires paving your own road. When things didn’t look so good for Rodrigo y Gabriela at home, instead of staying put trying to force something to change for the better they took their act to an entirely different part of the world to find success. Though Romero Y Perez’s challenges are not quite the same they also pave their own road to becoming known as opposed to the standard way of playing in clubs. Musicians pay (the club) to play in many clubs and quite often have to bring a crowd in too, this is so common it has a name, ‘pay to play.’

The way they get their gigs is at the very least inventive and is currently proving successful for them. “Musicians are constantly underrated and underpaid,” Romero explains. “We thought about doing venues but it’s pay to play, we don’t believe in that and we don’t want to be exploited in that way. I look online to find out about events and shows coming up in the community. Things really kicked off this summer with playing multiple Long Beach events like the Green LB festival.” Romero Y Perez are building a reputation in Long Beach and it appears that they have also found their change for the better in terms of reaching their audience by focusing on playing community events. Romero explains they want to play for the com-

munity, build their repertoire of songs and their reputation. Noting that there’s no Latin musical symbol in Long Beach they take pride in coming from to the city, where they want to give back to the community. Romero Y Perez just appeared November 30th in the Walker Building on Pine Avenue playing for an agency known as Men Making a Change. As it turns out, Johnny reports that Men Making a Change offered to record them within the next coming months. The next event you can see them live at will be a fundraiser for the Long Beach Immigrants Rights Coalition at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 8 at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 5450 E. Atherton St., in Long Beach. The band plays at 8 p.m. Check out Romero Y Perez on Facebook at


Tickets & Info: Williams Bookstore, &

Shop Local. Support The Community You Live In.

478 W. 6th St. • San Pedro


Japanese Restaurant Sushi Bar 380 W. 6th St. • 832-5585


Golden State Pops Orchestra opens their 11th season with this special annual holiday gift to the community. Maestro STEVEN ALLEN FOX leads the orchestra in a festive concert of holiday film music. Maestra MARYA BASARABA leads the GSPO Chorale – 40 exceptional voices from professional and regional choirs throughout Southern CA. Tickets ($60 - $22.50) and information at

Dame of the British Empire, U.N. Messenger of Peace, worldfamous primatologist and Grand Marshall of the 2013 Rose Parade. Join Dr. Jane and Friends for a fun and inspirational evening of music and stories from the Dame herself! Tickets (Students w/ID $20 | Adults | $35) and a special VIP preferred seat admission that includes a post-show reception with Dr. Goodall | $75 at experiencesp. com. Group rates available for parties of 10 or more at 310.519.1150.

DEC 15 | 8PM

JAN 4, 2013 | 7:30PM

December 07 – 13, 2012

San Pedro City Ballet brings Tchaikovsky’s timeless classic ballet to life with this eagerly anticipated South Bay holiday tradition. For 18 years, SPCB has presented a top notch production that thrills young and old (and also STARS young and old!). For information, please visit For tickets ($36/$26/$18), visit brownpapertickets. com/event/272149, or call 310.732.1861



from p. 7

OCU Strike

and circumstances of the case, the Coast parties agreed that the OCU picket lines are indeed Bona Fide.” Negotiations resumed on Nov. 29, but broke

down again during the weekend. “At a certain point people get fed up when the big companies appear so intransigent and disrespectful of the concerns that workers and community members are raising about the need to keep good jobs here,” Merrilees said, by way of explaining why the strike was necessary, while

Trucks backed up on Terminal Island during the OCU strike. File photo.

December 7 - 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

it was still ongoing. “When you’re dealing with big powerful corporations, they rarely pay attention to workers and community concerns, unless you get their attention, and that usually requires something drastic, such as a strike, to force them to face reality and issues that otherwise they are used to ignoring.” “Standing together and supporting this strike is the only way to protect everyone’s job,” McEllrath concluded. “Our support has already forced the companies to resume negotiations. We can win this fight—if we stay strong and united.” And that’s exactly what happened. Both parties had agreed to federal mediation after a marathon bargaining session at Banning’s Landing involving Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. But mediation proved unnecessary, as the agreement was announced a few hours later.


Garden from p. 5

we have Nissan warehouses down the street,” Luna noted. “We have all of these really big name businesses in the area, but yet a lot of them don’t give to the community… I don’t believe they see Compton as a place where they want to reinvest their funds. They reinvest their funds in other communities but not in communities where their warehouses impact directly.” In fact, Webb and Luna note that these companies often don’t even want to hear them out and slam the door on their faces. They believe that if elected officials got behind community efforts such as theirs, these companies would not so easily ignore community voices. The pair have noticed that they received the most traction when they worked from the grassroots on up by attracting volunteers from labor unions and employees from the warehousing companies, Luna noted As much help as Luna and Webb get from local volunteers, they receive a lot of help from outside sources, particularly San Pedro-based organizations such as the Adopt a Storm Drain and Clean San Pedro, both of which have donated their time and resources in furtherance of Make a Green Noise. Webb said they look forward to working other community organizations and community members. She noted that com-

munity members so often operate from a position of isolation that they don’t realize that one problem actually impacts other aspects of their life. “They consider them isolated incidences, but they’re not,” Webb noted “If you’re homeless, it impacts all areas of your life. If you are ill or

sick, it affects all areas of your life. If you’re jobless… it affects everything… So why not reach out to other organizations and make this a one stop center. That’s just how we see it.” Before the interview is wrapped, another gentleman, perhaps 70 years old, mosied over to introduce himself to the

two women. Himself a fellow gardener, he inquired about the community garden. He noted that he helps tend to four 24 by 10 foot plots in his community’s garden, growing everything from cauliflower to corn. And with that, another connec-

tions was made, another bond was forged.


On Dec. 7, the Make a Green Noise will host “Tea with a Master Gardener,” who will discuss soil, composting

and techniques in maintaining and harvesting a healthy backyard garden. The long term goal is to establish a Farmer’s Market on the lot of the community garden. In January, they are partnering with TreePeople to give away fruit trees.

Special Holiday Edition December 7 - 13, 2012



December 7 - 13, 2012

Special Holiday Edition

RLn 12-06-12 Edition  

Change Agents: Making a Green Noise, ILWU: The Strike Ended But Is That The End?, Gardners and Crafters Forge Connections and Eclectic Gifts...

RLn 12-06-12 Edition  

Change Agents: Making a Green Noise, ILWU: The Strike Ended But Is That The End?, Gardners and Crafters Forge Connections and Eclectic Gifts...