Mailbag: If you don't like traffic, don't drive

Louis Leo says he didn't move here to get stuck in L.A.'s traffic congestion ("Laguna traffic now like L.A.'s," Jan. 28). He wants the canyon widened to four lanes for its entire length so he can drive unimpeded by all the other people in their cars.

So did he bring his car with him when he moved here? Doesn't he realize he's part of the problem? It's always someone else's fault. Why don't they do something?

Here are some things he can do: He could move to Aliso Viejo. They have no traffic congestion there. There are four- and six-lane roadways everywhere and plenty of parking.

Laguna is a village, which is why we live here. We don't want to live somewhere that is given over entirely to automobiles.

Sixty percent of car driving is discretionary. You don't have to do it. So he can cut back on his driving. Leave the car at home one day a week. Ride a bike. Rideshare with a neighbor. Take the bus, as I do. Walk more. If he is still working, then use the Internet to telecommute two or three days a week.

If everybody did these things, it would cut the traffic in the canyon way back.

I live quite comfortably in Laguna without a car at all. I can do everything I need to do on foot, by bike, by bus and train — if I go to L.A. My health is vastly improved, and I don't feel a bit deprived. Quite the contrary, I laugh at the drivers fuming in their cars stuck in traffic jams.

The solution is up to you, not them.

Charles Alban

Laguna Beach


Skateboard fliers are littering city

I too had the "pleasure" of having the SNAG two-page propaganda taped to my mailbox — twice. I do not stand on either side of the issue, but I do stand against unsolicited material being stuck to my mailbox and littering my city. If you are too cheap to pay for postage, it is not a political message you are spreading but clearly a personal grudge.

Ann Marie McKay

Laguna Beach


City, Angels improved Riddle Field

If you haven't seen it, you should. Riddle Field looks fantastic! Laguna Beach Little League is about to kick off its 59th baseball season but before it could start, Riddle Field got some much-needed improvements. With the help of Tom Toman at the city Parks and Recreation Department and Vic Hillstead and his crew at Public Works, the trees were pruned, sprinklers replaced, fences painted and the lights were re-lamped.

With the coordination by John Carpino from the Angels baseball organization, and the expertise and hard work of the Angels head groundskeeper Barney Lopas and his crew, the infield was leveled with new dirt, the pitchers mound redone and the infield grass replaced. Our wonderful landscape contractor, Mark Linton, installed new bases and fence covers. He also gave the snack bar and dugouts a fresh coat of paint. I don't think this field has ever looked better. Thank you to everyone who helped bring this field back to life. I'll say it again: It looks awesome!

I invite everyone to come by the field and take a look. Baseball games begin March 1, so stop by, watch a game, enjoy a Riddle burger and marvel at this Laguna Beach gem. What a great town we live in and what a great place kids and families have to play baseball. Have a home run day!

Jennifer Sweet

Laguna Beach

EDITOR'S NOTE: Jennifer Sweet is president of Laguna Beach Little League.


Missing stamp machine at post office

Where did the downtown Laguna Beach electronic stamp machine go and why?

I have a P.O. box at the downtown Laguna Beach Post Office. I remember that at one time there used to be an electronic stamp machine that was at this location, and I would use it to occasionally purchase stamps. Then one day the machine was gone. I have asked every single postal worker working at the post office why the stamp machine is gone, and when or if another one will ever replace the one we had, but no one had an answer. Now anyone who has ever visited our local post office in downtown Laguna Beach has more often than not experienced long lines to mail anything, and I do commend the friendliness of each of our local postal workers.

I am one class away from achieving my bachelor's in business with a concentration in green sustainable enterprise, and through embracing this education, I have converted my lifestyle to mostly paperless billing and pay all of my bills online as this method saves time, money and is good for the environment, but I still like to mail birthday cards, holiday cards and thank you cards, therefore I occasionally have to purchase stamps. So I guess my frustration lies in the fact that if I don't have a stamp and need to purchase one, or even a book of stamps, I need to get into line, and patiently wait to purchase a stamp or stamps from our friendly postal employees at the counter.

Now, all that said, it would make logical, economical and environmental sense to provide and install an electronic stamp machine where it used to be. The positive effects of doing this are many. If people just need to buy a stamp or a book of stamps and could do so from a machine like we used to have, they would not have to stand in line and consume the time of our postal workers, and they'd spend less time at the postal office, which in turn would most likely result in people then leaving the post office and moving their cars from their parking spots, which would offer the opportunity for other cars to park and consumers to shop at our local businesses.

I realize the economy is down and times are tough, but from a logical, environmental and parking issue standpoint, it would make sense to bring back an electronic stamp machine.

Ryan Keller

Laguna Beach


Marine reserves will help ocean

I would like to thank Catharine Cooper for her inspiring words in last week's column, "Ocean protection a vital cause" [Coastline Pilot, Jan. 28]. She spoke from the heart and in so doing reminds us all that despite the controversy surrounding the newly designated Marine Reserves in Laguna Beach our ocean is in trouble and needs all the protection it can get.

The Laguna Beach Marine Reserves that will go into effect later this summer are a small step in the right direction. There is still plenty of room and sport left over for us all in our vast coastal waters for the fishermen, the scuba divers, the beachgoers, the swimmers, the tidepoolers and snorkelers and those that choose to surf, paddle, kayak and boat on the water.

If we all work together in support of protecting our marine life within our Marine Reserves we can help our coastal ecosystems remain healthy, resilient and productive for the benefit of current and future generations.

Charlotte Masarik

Laguna Beach

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