HillcrestBlog by "San Diego News Service" (619) 757-4909

"San Diego News Service" covers hard news, features and reviews for local and national print media, and maintains, "HillcrestBlog." Address: 3907 Georgia St., #15, San Diego 92103-3548. Our editor is Leo E. Laurence, J.D., Copy Ed.: Martin Brickson. Member: Society of Professional Journalists, Latino Journalists of California. Call news tips to (619) 757-4909 (days), Nights: (619) 220-8686 (fax also). leopowerhere@msn.com Copyright 2008 by San Diego News Service

Monday, September 15, 2008

UNTRUSTWORTHY GAYS IN HILLCREST

Generally, I don't trust people who don't trust me.

Example: Just before a regular weekly meeting of the Monday Night Gay Mens Discussion Group at "The Gay Center" in Hillcrest, I taped (audio) an interview - outside of the group's meeing room - with longtime gay activist Jay Murley, a participant of the group.

He had some strong opinions about the trendy nightclub Universal that opened last year at University & Vermont in the Uptown District of Hillcrest.

Universal - which reportedly cost $5.5 million to develop - has a capacity of nearly 1000 people, and on weekends it is often totally filled. Some nights the crowd had been so huge that the San Diego Fire Department sent investigators inside to limit the crowd.

That means literally hundreds of cars pour into the Uptown neighborhood every weekend. Where do they park? Universal provides NO parking, and a deal to park some valet-parking vehicles in the underground parking facility under Ralphs supermarket, fell through.

Unfortunately, the operators of Universal haven't been paying their bills, and nearly $500,000 in mechanics liens have been filed against the nightclub, PLUS lawsuits have been filed.

As a journalist, I'm doing a story on this. To get community reaction, I made a very short audio tape of Jay Murley outside the discussion group's room, and before the meeting began.

When the discussion group did begin, two of the participants didn't trust me. They wanted to be assured that my tape recorder was turned OFF.

I gave them that assurance just as I walked out of the meeting, saying that I didn't feel comfortable with the participants, and don't trust people who don't trust me.
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Contact Leo E. Laurence, J.D. at leopowerhere@msn.com, or call (619) 757-4909.

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