Wednesday, February 22, 2006

What do you miss most from Ojai's past?

What was better about Ojai in the old days? Post your thoughts here.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Cacique said...

Steelhead Trout in Ventura River. One could catch them easily from the bridges over the river. Now, it looks like the local Casitas Water District is killing the same fish they claim to be trying to help with the new fish structure at Robles Dam.

4/05/2006 3:58 PM  
Blogger Rhonda said...

I miss the lack of crime. 20 years ago the crime reports consisted of someone driving off the road while blowing their nose, along with an occational pety theft.

4/17/2006 5:45 PM  
Blogger jeninojai said...

I miss there being more things for the younger kids to do. The Bowling Center was one of them. Why do we have so many parks, but nothing for older kids? That is what I miss.

4/18/2006 7:48 AM  
Blogger MadamPrez said...

Like "jeninojai," I, too, miss the bowling alley. A lot! I also miss civic leaders-with-a-sense-of-humor, e.g., Jim Loebl, Nina Shelley, Suza Francina (although Rae Hanstad can make even the most interminable City Council meetings, the kind with 36 agenda items---32 of them Proclamations, Resolutions, or Affirmations of some sort---bearable. So bearable you don't even notice your bum's numb until you try to get up and go home!) And the traditional school calendar (you know, three months off for summer, the way God intended), which is pretty much the same thing as missing the days when our local school administrators told it like it was/called a spade a spade/didn't try to pass off a year-round school calendar as a "modified" one: Note that, not only do 500+[!] California school districts with the EXACT SAME CALENDAR as ours use the term "year-round," 100 percent of these calendars were “sold” honestly… a sale that works particularly well in the poorer communities, where few-if-any parents care whether, ahem, “’Studies show’ that children retain more of what they’ve learned the previous year when on a modified [sic] school calendar than they do when on a traditional calendar,” is a TRUE claim or not, but most-if-not-all parents care that, the more days school’s in session, the less they’ll have to pay for childcare. Never mind that year-round and/or ’modified’ calendars and traditional ones have the same number of instruction hours---thanks to the ridiculous number of "half-days" included in the former---better the kid's on his own four hours than eight! And for those "long" stretches school's not in session at all, e.g., "President's Week" or the "Summer" break? Why, they're barely long enough for a kid to wear out his welcome at a relative's here, a kindly neighbor's there! “Shoot, if I could make my kid just a wee bit more charming, I wouldn’t have to spend ANYTHING on daycare!”
And the more “affluent” districts, the ones where two working parents (one of whose wages will gladly be sacrificed-by-half for the peace of mind quality daycare provides) or simply two-parent-families are the norm? THEIR school boards sold them on year-round school with the truth, as well: “Your schools will get more money from the State the more days your kids are here.”
So why didn’t the OUSD just come out and tell it like it was? That is, the longer the “calendar,” the more per diem (half-diem or otherwise!) it’ll receive---and therefore have on hand for Extra Art, Extra Music, Extra field trips, guaranteed smaller class sizes/“individualized attention,” bilingual instruction, etc.,---and let us, as a community, take it from there? Why did it feel the need to make up some nonsense about traditional summers being “too long” for kids to remember what they learned the Grade before. (Please; how did we former public school students manage all these years, our “forgetting” everything we’d learned over all those “too long” Summers? I mean, really: Why wasn’t the average Prom King or Queen 25 years old?)
Of course, lies have a way of catching up to the people who perpetrate them… anyone seen OUSD’s latest enrollment figures? The district can blame the ever-declining numbers on the ever-rising “cost of living” all they want; the powers-that-be on the---horrors!---“gentrification” of our valley till the steelhead come home. The real reason public school enrollment figures are down is we, even us ungentrified Joes who were lucky enough to buy homes here 18-or-more-years ago, i.e., when our firstborns were infants; even those of us who, despite living here “forever” still pinch pennies in order to take vacations and/or “support” local shopkeepers (Come on, even with gas at $4 a gallon, it would be infinitely more cost-effective for an old-time Ojai-an to say, “Screw loyalty!” and shop Ventura-or-beyond) are sick of being lied to. And the reason they keep---and will keep---getting lower is this: We, the lied to, don’t all get sick at once. Some of us are so optimistic, we’d cheerfully wait three years or more before deciding a ‘modified’ academic calendar doesn’t yield smarter kids. Some of us will smell a rat from a mile away, but won’t so much as wrinkle our noses until we can afford private school and/or the time to home-school. And some of us are just plain naïve (i.e., will believe anything someone “in authority” tells us) and therefore won’t know we’re sick until our neighbors tells us we should be.
As for me, I’m a reluctant pessimist: I want to believe the populists still run the show, but how can I? Pull the valley’s curtain back these days, you’re just as apt to find a nouveau-riche social climber as you are a snakeoil salesman.

5/03/2006 1:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I miss the real middle class fun loving friendly people. I miss the times you could go to the park without the homeless drunks urinating in front of the children and begging for money. I miss going out to eat where everyone spoke and understood english. I miss being able to shop in town for the basics wihout having to pay triple prices. And most of all I miss the normal flow of traffic when you could pick up your children from school without feeling you were in the LA rush hour. Ojai will never be the same and yes there is a hispanic gang problem, and a horrendous drug problem. The officials may try to sweep certain issues under the carpet but..you can't hide it forever.

8/26/2006 11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Peasants and Pitchforks is not quite an endearing
label for the emerging political group trying to
save Ojai, although surely the writer meant well with
that title in his recent OVNews editorial.
Ojai has always coexisted with many income levels-
folks intermingled into a larger whole in this
special place. Some are richer, some are poorer.
Some have disposable incomes but no place they can
really call home. Some own their a home but have
little disposable income. But we all who are
attempting this thankless work in local politics have
a strong common bond- we are compelled to believe that
decency can overcome mere politics. If one wants to
get literal, there seems to be a new Ojai dictionary
coming out where the term "building moratorium" means
full tilt buildout of the city. It may very well be
that fighting progress and projects is a lost cause-
but isn't that the only cause worth fighting for? Not
from the lessor, not from the higher, but from the
people.
Remember that phrase? Of, By, and For the People! Pete L

9/14/2006 12:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I miss seeing the sidewalks in ojai you cant see them anymore just a sea of Mexicans like ventura or Oxnard looking for more tax free hand outs. The only thing they work hard at is convincing us that we need them if you think we need them then i have some kick*** property in Mexico cheap! OJAI was sweet 20 yrs ago.

10/28/2006 5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People talk about Ojai 20 years ago. What about Ojai 50 years ago before the "Y", before the hospital, when that whole area was nothing but wheat fields. When Nordhoff High School and junior High occupied the same place in the Arbolada. When I earned a dime a line manually setting pins at the four lane bowling alley downtown, when we kept our 3 horses in our backyard within the city limits, when I enjoyed an occassional banana split at the soda fountain in the pharmacy across from the post office. Nothing in the Mira Monte area except Henderson Airport and a couple of homes. When there was nothing East of shady lane except citrus groves and a few homes. When we parked our cars in front of our homes and left the keys in the ignition and doors unlocked all night. Ojai has none of the charm it once held.

11/30/2006 9:25 PM  
Blogger alt.obituaries said...

Oh, please, you oldtimers. Must
you always bewail your fate and
the fate of progress? Yeah, things
have changed. Get over it. The
universe is not a static phenomenon. Life goes on. Etc.

12/26/2006 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We're not bewailing anything. Just remembering how wonderful Ojai was before all you "Johnnie Come Latelys" arrived and ruined the valley.

1/11/2007 9:25 PM  
Anonymous bob said...

I miss the days when it was only larry bower, bob durett, and chemo driving the three wheel harley. i could tap a keg of beer in front of rookie west's ojai valley market on the fourth of july and smoke a cig. at the same time. remember drinking beer in loops parking lot and street racing on ghorm road. Now that was the days my friends

2/12/2007 9:53 PM  

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