Beach Magazine February 2017

cbudman

February 9, 2017

Volume 47, Issue 27

Manhattan Phoenix

Malissia Clinton

Sundeen’s search

Smog City’s lady

Redondo Ramen master

South Bay Bridal Guide


February 9, 2017

Volume 47, Issue 27

ON THE COVER

Malissia Clinton

Photo by Emily Kinni

(EmilyKinni.com)

BEACH PEOPLE

12 Faith restored by Malissia Clinton

Manhattan Beach attorney Malissia Clinton contemplated moving out of

town after her family’s home was firebombed. Why she didn’t was the

subject of her talk at the Manhattan Beach TEDx in November.

16 Phoenix rising by Ryan McDonald

Having her family’s Manhattan Beach dream home firebombed wasn’t the

first life changing challenge Malissia Clinton faced. There were also a few

bumps in road between South Central LA and Stanford Law school.

24 The challenges of a simple life by Mark McDermott

After graduating from Mira Costa High School, Mark Sundeen took a road

few would choose to write the widely praised “The Man Who Quit Money.”

Now he has written “The Unsettlers: In Search of the Good Life in Today’s

America.” The book tells the stories of others pursuing a simple life.

30 Noodle master by Richard Foss

Ramen Shack Takumiya’s name translates as Place of Masterly Skill. The

hard to find restaurant in South Redondo Beach lives up to its name.

8 Beach Calendar

10 South Bay Chili Cook Off

20 Hermosa Man, Woman of the Year

22 South Bay Bridal Guide

28 El Camino honors

distinguished alumni

BEACH LIFE

28 Hermosa Kiwanis Taste of the Beach

32 Redondo Beach Women’s March

34 Perfect surf

38 Torrance Memorial Auxiliary

39 Home services

STAFF

PUBLISHER Kevin Cody, ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Richard Budman, EDITORS Mark McDermott, Randy Angel, David

Mendez, and Ryan McDonald, ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Bondo Wyszpolski, DINING EDITOR Richard Foss, STAFF

PHOTOGRAPHERS Ray Vidal and Brad Jacobson, CALENDAR Judy Rae, DISPLAY SALES Tamar Gillotti, Amy Berg, and

Shelley Crawford, CLASSIFIEDS Teri Marin, DIRECTOR OF DIGITAL MEDIA Hermosawave.net, GRAPHIC DESIGNER Tim

Teebken, DESIGN CONSULTANT Bob Staake, BobStaake.com, FRONT DESK Judy Rae

EASY READER (ISSN 0194-6412) is published weekly by EASY READER, 2200 Pacific Cst. Hwy., #101, P.O. Box 427, Hermosa

Beach, CA 90254-0427. Yearly domestic mail subscription $150.00; foreign, $200.00 payable in advance. POSTMASTER: Send

address changes to EASY READER, P.O. Box 427, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. The entire contents of the EASY READER newspaper

is Copyright 2017 by EASY READER, Inc. www.easyreadernews.com. The Easy Reader/Redondo Beach Hometown News

is a legally adjudicated newspaper and the official newspaper for the cities of Hermosa Beach and Redondo Beach. Easy Reader

/ Redondo Beach Hometown News is also distributed to homes and on newsstands in Manhattan Beach, El Segundo, Torrance,

and Palos Verdes.

CONTACT

n Mailing Address P.O. Box 427, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 Phone (310) 372-4611 Fax (424) 212-6780

n Website www.easyreadernews.com Email news@easyreadernews.com

n Classified Advertising see the Classified Ad Section. Phone 310.372.4611 x102. Email displayads@easyreadernews.com

n Fictitious Name Statements (DBA's) can be filed at the office during regular business hours. Phone 310.372.4611 x101.

6 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


S O U T H B AY

CAL ENDAR

Thursday, February 9

Happy Hour with History

“A brief, partial and biased culinary history of

Hermosa Beach” is the title of a talk to be presented

by Easy Reader food critic Richard Foss at

6 p.m. to members and guests of the Hermosa

Beach Historical Society. $10. RSVP at HermosaBeachMuseumRSVP@gmail.com.

710 Pier

Avenue.

The end plan

Completing an Advance Directive is the first

step to ensuring you receive end of life care that

reflects your personal values, choices and what

matters most to you. Join Dr. Matt Gonzales, Associate

Medical Director with the Providence Institute

for Human Caring. 4 - 6 p.m. Silverado

Beach Cities, 514 S. Prospect Ave, Redondo

Beach. RSVP: 310-896-3100 or lglover@silveradocare.com.

Friday, February 10

Relax to singing bowls

Cancer Support Community-Redondo Beach

(CSCRB) hosts singer Jeralyn Glass. Participants

will experience deep relaxation, rejuvenation,

and a state of well-being through the vibrant

tones of crystal alchemy singing bowls. Free. 3 -

4:30 p.m. 109 West Torrance Blvd, Redondo

Beach. RSVP. Limited space available. Call 310-

376-3550 or visit

cancersupportredondobeach.org.

Saturday, February 11

Dawn patrol

Join the Manhattan Beach Teen Center for a

day trip to Bear Mountain and Snow Summit.

Participants do not need to be enrolled the Teen

Center to register. Transportation provided by

charter bus service. Trips are open to teen ages

11 to 18 years. Bus departs 5:30 a.m., returns 8

p.m. to the Teen Center at Manhattan Heights

Park. Must preregister. Complete and sign waiver

form, available online, prior to trip. Return

waivers to Teen Center staff on the day of trip.

Cost: $25 (for season pass holders) to $95 (All Inclusive).

A trip is also scheduled for March 11.

Call Tiffany Thomure, Teen Recreation Leader,

for more information, 310-802-5426.

Get it in writing

Cancer Support Community Redondo Beach

(CSCRB) hosts Barbara Force. This monthly program

offers everyone affected by cancer—participants,

family and friends—techniques to use

writing as a tool for expression and reducing

stress. 9 a.m. - noon. 109 West Torrance Blvd, Redondo

Beach. Advance registration is preferred.

Call 310-376-3550 or visit the website at cancersupportredondobeach.org.

Be part of the crew

Join the Trail Crew introductory class to learn

how you can improve Peninsula trails with various

techniques for erosion repair, building rock

walls, proper pruning and more. No experience

needed, 18 and over. 9 a.m. to noon. 916 Silver

Spur Road.#104, Rolling Hills Estates. Sign up at:

pvplc.volunteerhub.com or 310-541-7613 x215.

Read to BARK Dogs

Beginning readers practice reading with a

friendly and gentle dog. 10:30 a.m. to noon. Register

at the Hermosa Library’s Reference Desk to

reserve your 15 minute slot. The volunteer handlers

and certified therapy dogs are part of Beach

Animals Reading with Kids (BARK). 550 Pier Ave.

310-379-8475.

Book talk for kids

Let’s Talk Books, a monthly book club for

4th/5th graders at the Manhattan Beach Library

meets at 2 p.m. to discuss The Strange Case of

Origami Yoda. At 3:30 p.m. Hang 10 Book Club

for 2nd/3rd graders discusses Alvin Ho: Allergic

to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things.

Copies of this month's selections should

be available in the Children's Section of

the library. 1320 Highland Ave. Contact

Melissa McCollum for more info: mmccollum@library.

lacounty.gov or 310-545-

8595.

April’s improv

April’s Fools improv troupe stars in

Foolish Valentine Funnies. Actors and audience

work together to create characters,

scenes and hilarity right before your eyes.

7:30 p.m. Tickets available online or at the

box office prior to showtime, $10. 2nd

Story Theatre, 710 Pier Ave., Hermosa

Beach. aprilsfoolsimprov. com.

Sunday, February 12

Play ball

South Bay Catholic Co-ed Adult Softball

League Pre-Season practice games. 11

a.m. - 3 p.m. Wilson Park, 2200 Crenshaw

Blvd, Torrance. RSVP by calling Fred at

310-504-0271 or

fredlawler@hotmail.com.

Succulent designs

Panayoti Kelaidis presents “Designing Gardens

for Succulents.” As Head Curator of the Denver

Botanical Garden, Kelaidis is considered a premier

practitioner of the art and science of alpine

rock gardening. He will describe how to build

and maintain crevice garden designs using

drought-tolerant succulents. 1 p.m. Free. South

Coast Botanic Garden, 26300 Crenshaw Blvd,

Palos Verdes Peninsula. More info at southcoastcss.org.

Wild Film Festival

The Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy

presents the annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival.

This premier environmental and adventure film

festival will inspire the audience to help protect

nature. Fifteen short films will be screened over

two hours. Tickets $10 online, $15 at the door. 3

p.m. Hermosa Beach Community Center, 710

Pier Ave. pvplc.org/_events/WildScenic_about.

asp.

The Gathering

The Gathering is a contemporary spiritual service

for young adults that celebrates exploration of

our authenticity as individuals. Through music

and message, we come together as a spiritual

community to support our journey individually

and collectively in reaching our highest potential.

Free. 5 p.m. Center for Spiritual Living, 907 Knob

Hill, Redondo Beach. Facebook.com/Thegatheringoc/.

Monday, February 13

You say tomato, I say yummy

South Coast Fuchsia Society meeting presents

Easily Growing Great Tomatoes with guest

speaker David Freed. Whether you have a large

yard or just a deck, you have room to grown

I♥MB, an annual exhibit featuring Manhattan Beach artists

opens with a reception on Sunday., February 19, from 4 to 6

p.m. at the Manhattan Beach City Hall, 1400 Highland Ave,

Manhattan Beach. The art exhibit will be on display until

March 16. Picture above from the 2015 exhibit is “The

Ocean” by Alina Skolaris.

tomatoes. Learn when to plant, what soil to use,

how much sun, pruning, pollinating, and more.

Open to the public. 9:30 a.m. South Coast Botanic

Garden, Classroom B, 26300 Crenshaw Blvd,

Palos Verdes Peninsula. 310-542-3016.

Monday, February 14

Take your sweetheart

Join Beach Cities Health District’s Blue Zones

Project monthly social hour, wine @ Five. Studies

show that for people who have a healthy relationship

with alcohol, enjoying a glass of wine rich

in artery scrubbing flavonoids can benefit the

health of the mind and body. Unwind with new

and old friends at Blue Zones Project’s Wine @

Five. The first glass of wine is $5, plus discounted

appetizers. 5 - 6 p.m. The Fish Shop, 719 Pier

Ave, Hermosa Beach. For a calendar of future

events visit bchd.org.

8 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Wednesday, February 15

Tax time

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide provides free tax assistance to older individuals

in the community. IRS trained and certified volunteers will prepare

Federal and California Tax returns for the community with special attention

to those persons 60 and older. No reservation is needed; first come,

first served. Every Wednesday through April 12. 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Joslyn

Community Center, 1601 N Valley Dr, Manhattan Beach. For more information,

contact the Older Adults Program at 310-802-5430.

Nothin’ but sand

Beach clean up by Heal the Bay. All you need to do is show up and bring

a bucket, if possible. 10 a.m. - noon. Redondo Beach Pier Tower Ruby St.,

George Freeth Way, Redondo Beach. Questions or concerns call 800 Heal

Bay x148 or email: aarenas@healthebay.org.

Learn about Lymphedema

Lymphedema can be a side effect of cancer treatment, vascular insufficiency

or a congenital condition where excess fluid collects in the tissues

and causes swelling. Join the MemorialCare Rehabilitation Institute at Long

Beach Memorial to learn about its signs, symptoms and who is at risk.

Held the third Wednesday of every month, 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. Parking will

be validated. Lecture is free. 2810 Long Beach Blvd. (562) 933-9505.

Conquering Kili

NFL long snapper Nate Boyer will host a fundraising event with NFL

alumnus Mark Pattison, UCLA Football Coach Jim Mora, and former Marine

Kirstie Ennis. The evening will include drinks and appetizers in a mixn-mingle

setting and send-off to the group who will climb Mt. Kilimanjaro

in March. Proceeds benefit the Chris Long Foundation’s Waterboys initiative

to raise awareness for water scarcity in East Africa. Hear about their

training for Kili. 7 - 9:30 p.m. 900 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beach. For

tickets: eventbrite.com/e/tales-of-a-mountain-with-mark-pattison-nateboyer-kirstie-ennis-and-coach-mora-tickets-30613959176.

Thursday, February 16

Bingo!

The Hermosa Five-0 Senior Center hosts an evening of Bingo with special

needs youth through the Friendship Foundation. 4:30-6 p.m. Food and

prizes. 710 Pier Ave.

Saturday, February 18

Story hugs

Enjoy a very special read aloud with Louis Thomas, author of Hug It

Out! at the Manhattan Beach Library. This new release picture book offers

Calendar cont. on page 39

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 9


each charity

SOUTH BAY

CHILI COOK OFF

pushes traditional

boundaries

A

fter just three years, the South Bay

Chili Cook Off has become one of

Manhattan Beach’s signature events.

At the Saturday, January 29 fundraiser, over

a dozen of the Beach Cities’ finest restaurants

and caterers pushed the boundaries of

what began in San Antonio in 1828 as

“meat...generally cut into a kind of hash

with nearly as many peppers as there are

pieces of meat.” The crowd at the downtown

Manhattan Beach fire station filled the truck

bay and spilled out into the back parking lot.

The cook off is organized by the Neptunian

Club and Trilogy Spa and benefits the Manhattan

Beach Firefighter’s Association Burn

Foundation.

RESULTS: 1. Nick’s; 2. Baran’s; 3. The

Arthur J; 4. Sausal. Fireman’s Favorite: Zinc.

PHOTOS BY BRAD JACOBSON

(CIVICCOUCH.COM)

1

3 4

2

1. The Arthur J crew.

2. John Barans, Tyler Gugliotta and

Adam Stone called themselves the Code

4 Crew for their four-meat chili. They

earned second place honors.

3. Councilman Mark Burton with Manhattan

Beach firefighters.

4. Darren’s Darren Weiss.

5. Mayor Tony D’Errico and wife Kristine

with an unidentified friend.

6. Simmzy’s Monse, general manager

Jikki Ricciotti and chef Mike Rubino.

7. Nick’s took top honors.

8. Firefighters John Dulmage and James

Muth.

9. Mark Lipps jumps into his new role as

CEO of the Manhattan Beach Chamber

of Commerce by lending a hand to his

wife Tamara, of Ripe Choice Catering.

10. Louis, of Shark’s Cove.

5

7

6

8

9 10

10 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


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February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 11


Malissia Clinton speaks at the Manhattan Beach TEDx last November.

tragedies What if our were

opportunities

In 1947,my grandparents Roy and Malissia Cooksey got married in Eloy, Arizona. The legacy

of Jim Crow was alive and well and times were tough for a young Black couple with big

dreams. My grandfather, the son of Arkansas sharecroppers, dreamed of opportunities beyond

picking cotton. My grandmother dreamed of going to college at Prairie View A&M.

for

She never made it past high school. But what they accomplished still blows my mind. My

grandparents opened Arizona’s first Black-owned day-care center and ran it for nearly four

decades. My grandfather helped form the state’s first chapter of the NAACP and he

triumph?

was its president during the years when membership alone meant putting your life

at risk. They knew Dr. King and Malcolm X and they spent their lives fighting for

equal rights.

I absolutely worshipped my grandparents.

Every Christmas I’d buy my grandmother a candle with a picture of a white Jesus

on it. It was the only thing I could afford from Smitty’s Grocery Store at the corner

of Budlong and 106th in South Central, where I lived. At 10 years old, I’d hear talk

of them being “Civil rights activists,” but to be honest, those words didn’t mean

much to me. What I remember was they owned a house in the desert on an acre of

land and they had a swimming pool. They were rich.

by Malissia Clinton

I didn’t know that activism in the ‘50s and ‘60s meant upsetting people and having the unimaginable

happen. People planted bombs in their car and threw bricks at their windows. They tried

[Editor’s note: Manhattan Beach resident to run them off the roadway. With hate in their voices they’d routinely called my grandparents’

Malissia Clinton delivered the following speech at house and threatened their lives and the lives of their children. Then one morning while they

the Saturday, November 5, 2016 TEDx conference were away at work, someone tried to fulfill that promise. They walked up to their house in broad

at Mira Costa High School.]

daylight, set fire to it, and burned it down.

My grandparents never said a word about it when I was growing up. You see they believed

life was for living, not reliving. So with dignity and grace, they rebuilt that home and they continued

living. They realized hate was powerful and ugly and small. But they believed they could

12 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Shopping, dining and entertainment, we’ve got it all!

APPAREL & ACCESSORIES

Friar Tux Shop . . . . . . . . . . (310) 534-4700

Styles of Hawaii . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-2151

Tilly’s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 534-1642

INSTRUCTIONAL SERVICES

Budding Artists. . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-9764

Color Me Mine . . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-9968

Malissia Clinton’s grandparents Malissia and Roy Cooksey told the Tucson

Sun Press in 1995 that they kept a “No Colored” sign as a reminder that

protecting civil rights requires constant effort. Photo courtesy of the Clinton

family.

defeat it if they kept fighting with purpose.

I am the daughter of their middle daughter. Life for me was no storybook.

My mother had me when she was 17. She married my father under

duress; for him it was get married or stare into the barrel of my grandfather’s

shotgun and for her it was that or abort me. They loved me and my

brother but they fought bitterly and neither was prepared to raise children.

Drugs were prominently featured in my childhood. My father dealt them;

my mother consumed them. Then they’d fight. Repeat, repeat, repeat. And

in this endless cycle I wondered: What if my life could be different? What

if I could live like my grandparents? I was repelled by the violence, unpaid

bills, and uncertainty. I wanted so much more.

In the 9th grade I made straight A’s ….entirely by mistake. I didn’t mean

to – it just happened. And my high school gave me a book scholarship.

Wait ….what?! They give you things when you get good grades? What if I

did that all four years? So I graduated and went to college and then to law

school. In part to fulfill the civil rights dream of my grandfather, who rose

to become a supervisor in the Arizona attorney general’s office civil rights

division, but never got his law degree. I was a first generation college graduate

and I was proud to make them proud.

When I got married, my husband and I set out to lead a life in their

image. After all, I was named after my grandmother who was named after

her grandmother. And my husband shared my grandfather’s initials. I fell

in love with him because he reminded me so much of my grandfather. He

has big hands like my grandfather and he’d built a house for his mom just

like my grandad built the house with the swimming pool for my grandmother.

A man who knew how to put up sheet rock was a man I wanted

to have little chocolate babies with.

We have three kids – each three grade years apart. And we are successful.

I am a lawyer, Ron is a pharmacist. We moved to beautiful Manhattan

Beach in the early 2000s. It’s picturesque and clean. It has AYSO and basketball

and football. Legions of kids and lots of parks and fields and smiling

faces. We noticed, for sure, there weren’t many black folks. In fact, I remember

driving home from work one day and I spied a Black woman

walking with three kids. I was determined to meet them so I drove up

quickly and lowered my window to yell out a greeting: “Oh hi um…

Rachel, Roi, Michai…mom!” It was my family and I didn’t even know it!

BEAUTY

European Wax Center . . . . (310) 325-2929

Fancy Nails . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-7980

Pia Hair Salon . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-0815

Rolling Hills Beauty Bar. . . (310) 530-3844

Victor Anthony’s

Hair Studio. . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-2338

Vogue Beauty Studio . . . . . (310) 530-5900

Waterside Beauty. . . . . . . . (310) 534-4242

BOOKS/CARDS/GIFTS/

EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS

The Gift Korner . . . . . . . . . (310) 539-5011

The Tutoring Center . . . . . . (310) 530-5377

DRY CLEANING

Beltone Cleaners . . . . . . . . (310) 325-2511

ENTERTAINMENT

AMC Theater

Rolling Hills 20 . . . . . . . . . (888) 262-4386

FINANCIAL/BUSINESS SERVICES

Chase Bank . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 257-1997

The Postal Mart . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-6777

South Bay Credit Union. . . (310) 374-3436

GROCERY/SPECIALTY FOODS

Baskin Robbins . . . . . . . . . (310) 530-6812

BevMo! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 257-0034

Cups’s Frozen Yogurt . . . . . (310) 534-2625

Nijiya Japanese Market . . . (310) 534-3000

Omaha Steaks . . . . . . . . . . (310) 539-3831

Peet’s Coffee & Tea. . . . . . . (310) 626-8008

Starbucks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 534-4835

Trader Joe’s. . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326-9520

Treat Tea & Ice . . . . . . . . . . (310) 326 9888

Whole Foods Market . . . . . (310) 257-8700

Yogurt Lounge . . . . . . . . . . (310) 230-5505

HEALTH & FITNESS

Arthur Murray

Dance Studio. . . . . . . . . . . (310) 977-0987

Great Earth Vitamins . . . . . (310) 534-8494

My Fit Foods . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 257-9175

PV Massage . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 530-9093

24 Hour Fitness Center . . . (310) 534-5100

Weight Watchers . . . . . . . . (800) 651-6000

HOME FURNISHINGS

Bed, Bath & Beyond . . . . . (310) 325-0432

Hitachiya . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 534-3136

JEWELRY

Modern Jewelry Mart. . . . . . (310) 517-0308

MEDICAL/DENTAL SERVICES

Dr. Mylena Jl, D.D.S, Inc. . . (310) 326-4691

Dr. M.G. Monzon, D.D.S. . . (310) 891-3303

Dr. Nolan Ng, Optometrist . (310) 326-2881

South Bay Pain Docs . . . . . . (310) 626-8037

Torrance Family Urgent

Care Center of South Bay . . (310) 997-1796

PET & GROOMING

Grooming Wonders. . . . . . . (310) 534-1130

Pet’s Plus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 539-5700

Wild Birds Unlimited . . . . . (310) 326-2473

REAL ESTATE

J A Realty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 539-2430

Person Realty. . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-8700

RESTAURANTS

Blaze Pizza . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-9500

Broth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 541-1227

California Pizza Kitchen . . . (310) 539-5410

Daphne’s Greek Café . . . . . (310) 257-1861

Fanoos Persian Restaurant . . (310) 530-4316

Fish Bonz Grill. . . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-2669

Hakata Yamaya . . . . . . . . . . (310) 257-1800

IcCho Japanese Restaurant . (310) 325-7273

Ichimi An . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 784-0551

Islands Restaurant . . . . . . . . (310) 530-5383

Joey’s Smokin’ B.B.Q. . . . . . (310) 257-1324

Kabab Curry of India . . . . . . (310) 539-0171

Little Sheep

Mongolian Hot Pot . . . . . . . (310) 517-9605

Mashawi Lebanese Grill . . . (310) 325-3545

Pinwheel Bakery. . . . . . . . COMING SOON

Rubio’s. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 891-1811

Ryo Zan Paku. . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 530-8720

Sushi Boy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 534-4013

Veggie Grill . . . . . . . . . . . . . (310) 325-6689

Northeast Corner of Crenshaw & Pacific Coast Highway in Torrance

For Information Call (310) 534-0411

A LA CAZE DEVELOPMENT COMPANY PROJECT

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 13


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A burning tire broke windows and scorched the front door of the Clinton

family’s Manhattan Beach home early in the morning of February 4, 2015.

Photo courtesy of the Clinton family

So, for sure, we noticed there weren’t that many Blacks, but we loved our

life in Manhattan Beach, and except for an isolated incident here or there,

we felt safe and welcome.

Then, on a typical Tuesday morning in 2015, my cell phone rang at 5

a.m. I had landed in Washington, D.C. for a business trip, late the night

before and I was in a deep sleep. It was my husband and it was 2 a.m.

back in LA. He said “Honey, someone set the house on fire.”

Yea – Somebody filled a tire with gasoline, lit it with a match and

chucked it at our front door. The sound of the breaking glass startled

Ronald awake and he woke up our three kids, hustled up the dog, and escaped

from the house through the garage. He used the garden hose to fight

the flame until firefighters arrived. Later, he said, the thing he remembers

most is how eerily quiet it was. There were as many as 5 fire trucks and

even more police cars, but not a single neighbor was outside.

As he stood there, a fireman approached him and said, “You seem calm.”

He replied, “Sir I have my three kids staring at me right now. I have to stay

calm if I want them to be calm.”

I wasn’t so calm, at least not inside. I was in a daze, not quite comprehending

who I was after the fire, versus who I was before.

I thought: So does this mean my kids need a police escort to school tomorrow?

Is it okay to go on solo runs in the mornings? Where is that can

of mace?

I thought of my brother James Deon who urged me to move to the community

when I hesitated years before because I wasn’t certain we could

get along – me with the fancy degrees. D said “Missy, don’t worry. Your

kids are growing up in a new day. It won’t be like what happened to

grandma and grandpa.”

I thought about how that brother, my only brother, my only sibling, was

shot and killed by a white police officer in Mesa Arizona in 2006. I cried

every single day for a year. That said, the fire really confirmed a sense of

foreboding and despair in me, that I was right and he was wrong. Things

hadn’t really changed at all and we weren’t ever going to get along. And

almost as if to confirm that realization, I called Donna, head of security at

14 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Manhattan Beach kids were among the hundreds of residents who joined a vigil at Metlox Plaza in downtown Manhattan Beach in support of the Clinton

family after their home was firebombed. Photo by Caroline Anderson

my company, who knows folks in the Manhattan

Beach Fire Department. and asked her to followup

for more information. She showed me the

written response she got back and it said,in all

caps, the fire was not arson. It was not a firebombing.

It was not a hate crime. Ron got called

in to take a polygraph because, well he just

seemed too dang calm.

All this was beyond frustrating. It was humiliating

for a place we’d called home for over a

decade. And it made us angry. We felt unwanted,

so we decide to move. Sure, in the back of our

minds we knew leaving meant giving in to hate.

But keeping our kids safe came first. So if we

were being told to go, we’d go.

And maybe we would have moved away. But

over the next few hours and days the unexpected

happened.

They say, hell hath no fury like a woman

scorned. We’ll I’d like to revise that to “Except for

the fury of a bunch of book club women!” In the

wee hours of the following morning I sent my

book club an email asking for their help and

telling them we were considering moving.

Their response was swift and pointed. I can

summarize it in four words: You ain’t going

nowhere. They immediately reached out to their

contacts who reached out to theirs and we starting

hearing from people. First, we got 10 emails.

Then 20, then 50. They just kept coming. People

expressed anger, and sadness, and disbelief and

offered to help. I’d cancelled my trip and was

headed home. And as the plane taxied from the

runway I couldn’t keep up with the emails. When

I arrived at LAX I got a call from my husband to

say there were news trucks outside his pharmacy

and at our home. Wait, what’s happening. Eight

women did this!

I arrived at the local hotel where we were staying

in four single rooms with the dog and my

mother, who had jumped on a plane and flew to

our aid. The outpouring continued. Between us,

we received no fewer than 500 emails and texts.

It felt like we were hearing from every single

member of the community. The greater community:

co-workers and high school classmates,

friends from college and customers of the pharmacy.

Black and white and brown and just plain

folks who cared. Plants and cookies and brownies

and flowers and food appeared in the hotel

lobby. Girl Scout troops dropped off gift baskets.

Meal trains were created. An entrepreneur

named Peter Pham set up a crowdfunding campaign

and over 300 people gave money for a reward.

The fund quickly swelled to nearly

$35,000. The police chief, a petite dynamo of a

woman and the fire captain, a big bear of a man,

arrived in the hotel lobby and said: let’s do a do

over.

This is all within 48 hours of the fire.

Another dear friend Michelle, sent me a text.

It said I’m thinking of organizing a vigil on Friday

– will you come? We honestly wanted to say

“no”. But the outpouring was speaking to us. It

was telling us to slow down and listen.

So we said yes and just three days after the fire,

we arrived at the local town square tired and

dazed. And exactly at 5 p.m., magic happened.

Dozens upon dozens of people starting pouring

into the square from every entry point. In a matter

of minutes we were surrounded by over 700

people. It was kind of Biblical. It felt like angels

had been dispatched to comfort us. The love was

palpable. I love hugs and there were lots of them

to go around. People kept hugging us and crying

for us and pleading with us to stay. They promised

the fire was not of the Community. It was

not set by them and it did not represent them.

and it struck me: God sent these people to restore

my faith. Because they represented the promise

my brother spoke of. The better tomorrow.

Maybe he was right after all and I was wrong.

Maybe we needed to stay and rebuild.

I didn’t wake up today and realize I was Black.

But in many respects my kids did in fact wake up

to their Blackness the day after that fire. They

knew their skin color was Black of course, but to

them “Black” was really nothing more than a different

crayon in the crayon box – all equal in

every way. After all, all they’ve ever really known

is a Black president. And while their loss of innocence

does still sadden me, in a way I thank

God for it because ....well… because… I need my

boys to outlive me. And I need my daughter to

have the chance to marry a man like her father,

just like I married a man like my grandfather. So

my kids need to know racism is alive and well

and how to combat it. But I also hope my kids

have added something even more life preserving

to their tool kit: the knowledge that in the middle

of every storm they’ll find the true power of God.

And that sometimes he lets the terrible happen

to us -- the collective us -- to give us an opportunity

to do something extraordinary.

My grandparents Roy and Malissia Cookey understood

that and they fought for over 60 years

to put me right here in front of you at this appointed

time. That’s their triumph over tragedy.

And maybe if you and I keep getting up, dusting

off and fighting for that better tomorrow… Today

...We’ll make history, too. Thank You. B

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 15


each people

Malissia Clinton in front of a fiddle leaf fig in her

Manhattan Beach home. The plant was badly

damaged in the fire someone set at their

home two years ago; to the family’s

surprise, it has completely

grown back.

Photo by Emily Kinni

StayingPower

Manhattan Beach’s Malissia Clinton finds strength in community spirit community

16 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017

by Ryan McDonald


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James Baldwin’s 1955 essay “Notes of a Native

Son,” recounts a particularly hectic week in

the author’s life that includes the death of his

father, the birth of his youngest sister, his own

birthday, the outbreak of the Harlem riot of 1943

and, finally, his father’s burial. Though much of

the essay is concerned with distance — his budding

intellectualism pushing him away from his

pragmatic father, persistent racism straining the

bonds of wartime citizenship — its real theme is

community, and that trying to remove oneself

“was folly.” Examining his father’s possessions

amidst the wreckage of the riot, Baldwin resolves

to accept “life as it is, and men as they are,” but

not to be complacent, to fight “injustices with all

[his] strength.”

When someone firebombed the Clinton residence

in Manhattan Beach nearly two years ago,

the immediate sensory experience was one of

wondering where the community was. As Malissia

Clinton revealed in her talk at the Manhattan

Beach TEDx last year, smoke and flames sent her

family streaming outside their home, where they

were soon met by both police officers and firefighters.

But once outside, they saw no other residents

of their Hill Section street.

Clinton, herself, was in Washington, D.C. on a

business trip, and recalls speaking with her husband

by phone. The absence of other faces was

one of the first things he mentioned.

“He was cool, calm, and collected, and that’s

the thing that touched him: all these lights, all this

smoke, and all this noise and there’s not one

neighbor,” Clinton said in an interview.

In the chaos following the fire, and what the

family described as hurtful, initial skepticism

from authorities, the family seriously was considering

leaving the place they had called home for

11 years.

(The Manhattan Beach Fire Department concluded

that the fire was arson. Sgt. Paul Ford of

the Manhattan Beach Police Department said,

“We investigated this case like we would any

other case.” Clinton would eventually praise the

outreach efforts of MBPD Chief Eve Irvine; the

case remains open, but is not being actively pursued

due to the absence of leads.)

In a late-night email to the members of her

book club, Clinton disclosed the family’s

thoughts of leaving. But if the initial showing of

neighbors was underwhelming, the family was

soon moved by a community response more

powerful than they could have imagined. The

members of the book club reached out to others

in the community, to the school board, the city

council and businesses. The outpouring helped

convince the Clintons to stay.

Two years later, what is striking about the effort

is that it went far beyond the personal concern of

keeping a close friend in town. The Clintons remaining

in Manhattan Beach is a vindication of

the town — that it is a place where injustice

would be recognized, but not accepted.

“Her comment in the email, ‘Maybe we don’t

belong here,’ just horrified me,” said Denise

Berger, a member of the book club. “You’re our

friend, you’re a part of this community. You can’t

think of this as evidence of how the community

feels, just because one person tried to do something

really bad.”

Getting here

It is fitting that a book club would come to

Clinton’s aid. She describes herself as “a reader

by mistake.” Beginning in fourth or fifth grade,

she began devouring Harlequin romances.

Though she did not begin reading classic literature

for pleasure until college, the early experience

sparked a passion for books that would

animate and support her in an improbable story

of success.

Her childhood was chaotic. Clinton began life

in Westmont, an unincorporated area near South

Los Angeles that regularly ranks as one of the

most violent neighborhoods in Southern California.

Her father sold drugs and her mother abused

them. But even then, her mother made sure

books were available to her.

Her parents eventually separated. By the time

she began high school, Clinton and her mother

moved to Tucson, Arizona, where they stayed

with Clinton’s beloved grandparents. Her mom

was, as Clinton puts it, “still struggling, still distracted

with what she was going through.” But

Clinton found a degree of stability, and soaked up

inspiration from her mom’s social-justice minded

parents. (Her grandfather, despite not having a

law degree, became a supervisor in the civil

rights division of the Arizona Attorney General’s

Office.)

When she notched straight A’s her first semester

of freshman year, no one was as surprised as

her. Clinton recalls the achievement as an accident,

a characterization that reveals both intellectual

modesty and the relative newness of high

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attorney. A graduate of the University of California,

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18 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017

expectations. Until that point, she

said, her innate intelligence had

been recognized if not necessarily

encouraged: in reward for her good

grades, she received a bookstore gift

certificate.

“I got these grades and I thought,

‘Oh I should probably just try and

do this every semester,’” Clinton

laughed.

After attending Arizona State on

full scholarship, Clinton entered

Stanford Law School, long her

dream school. She began from a

background of deep idealism, informed

by the activism of her

grandparents. But like many law

school students, the reality of legal

aid work — its emotional toll and its

tiny paycheck — set in, and she

switched course.

“I do care deeply about social justice.

But I’m very soft on the inside.

I imagined myself doing a lot of crying,

and being very frustrated with

my career if I pursued it,” Clinton

said.

She married, advanced in her

legal career, and had a family. They

were living in Ladera Heights, a

wealthy, predominantly black

neighborhood near Baldwin Hills.

They had, as Clinton put it, “arrived.”

But though the tony area is

a far cry from “Boyz in tha Hood,”

children living there are mostly

zoned to public schools in the Inglewood

Unified School District. The

majority of families in the area sent

their kids to private school. The result,

she said, was a kind of fissure

in the community.

“When it came time to look for

schools, everybody goes to private

schools, which means the kids

don’t know each other,” Clinton

said.

So they set their sights on Manhattan

Beach, a community with

excellent public schools.

Here to stay

For the book club meeting that

followed the fire, the group set literature

aside and went on an outing.

The headed to Dulan’s on

Crenshaw, a soul food restaurant in

the heart of black Los Angeles, and

took an African dance class.

It was a needed moment of cultural

levity. The Clintons’ decision

to stay unfolded against the background

of increasing national debate

about issues facing black

communities. Police officers shot

and killed Michael Brown in Ferguson,

Missouri, five months earlier;

Freddie Gray died in a Baltimore

police van two months later.

Clinton’s speech in November

also came at an eventful time. It

was the product of a request by

Kate Bergin, the executive director

of Manhattan Beach TEDx. Though

it was apparent to almost everyone

that the story would be a draw,

Clinton was hesitant to appear.

She delivered her remarks Nov. 5,

confident that Hillary Clinton

would be elected president. She

said it would have been considerably

more difficult to deliver her

talk had it fallen on Nov. 9.

“I wish I could say I called it or I

was worried — none of it. I don’t

know that I could have delivered it.

I had to think at the end of it that

there was hope, and that would

have been hard in that moment,”

Clinton said.

The setback, she said, would have

been temporary. Clinton continues

to believe that the threats posed by

a Trump administration are opportunities

for caring people to do

good. But her ideas about the uplifting

power of faith and community

are tempered by a clear-eyed view

of race and social progress.

At least part of her family’s

choice to stay in Manhattan was

practical. In a striking example of

what W.E.B. Du Bois described as

the “double consciousness” of black

Americans, she said the risks of

staying in Manhattan had to be

weighed against the ways in which

the fire had actually made her children

safer.

“They’re known here. In Beverly

Hills, the place where we were considering

moving, I had to worry

about them walking out the door

and, as soon as they’re 100 feet

away, someone saying, ‘What are

they doing here?’ Here, everyone

knows about the family that had a

fire,” Clinton said.

This balance — between accepting

and fighting, cynicism and idealism

— has marked Clinton’s

worldview for the last decade. Her

brother was shot and killed by a

white police officer in Arizona in

2006. In her tearful comments

about the tragedy, what emerges is

a person self-aware enough to recognize

how the shooting could have

thrown the life of her and her family

off its track. The fire presented

a similar danger — an opportunity

to retreat in disappointment and

dismay.

“Everybody gets an experience

like that once in a lifetime, at least

one, so I’m not unique. But I had to

figure out how I was going to pick

myself up off the ground,” she said.

“The hurt was irrelevant. I had to go

and figure out what I believed.” B


February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 19


each people

NOWICKI, FLAHERTY

HB Man and Woman of the year

R

yan Nowicki and Jackie Flaherty were honored

as the Man and Woman of the Year by

the Hermosa Beach Chamber of Commerce

and Visitors Bureau during a dinner-show at the

Comedy and Magic Club on January 31. Nowicki is

an attorney and husband of city Treasurer Karen

Nowicki. His wide ranging volunteer work began in

2006 with 4Ever Foundation (formerly Animal Lovers

of South Bay). His other volunteer work includes Leadership

Hermosa, Arts Group of Hermosa and Care

Harbor, which offers free medical clinics. Nowick

thanked his wife and legal partners for allowing him

the time for his volunteer work.

Flaherty is the wife of Planning Commissioner

Mike Flaherty, whom she thanked for marching with

her on the Aids Walk, the Revlon Walk/Run, the

Beach Cities Relay for Life and the Avon 3 day/60

Mile Walk to End Breast Cancer. Flaherty also is a

long time member of the Hermosa Beach Woman’s

Club and Sister City Association.

1

2

PHOTOS BY KEVIN CODY

1. Chamber CEO Kim MacMullan (left) and

Hany Fangary (third from right) with newly installed

chamber board members (from left) Brian

Herlihy, of Hermosa Fish Shop; Julie Hamill, of

Hamill Law & Consulting; Andrea Jacobsson, of

JAMA Auto House and ista Sotheby’s; Cody Asselin,

of Hotel Hermosa; and resident Janice Brittain.

Not pictured is Doug Howarth, of Silvio’s

Brazilian BBQ.

2. Woman of the Year Jackie Flaherty receives a

bouquet from last year’s Woman of the Year Alice

Villalobos.

3. Kim MacMullan introduces last year’s and this

year’s Women of the Year Alice Villalobos and

Jackie Flaherty.

4. Comedian Chris Cope and Kim MacMullan.

5. Man of the Year Ryan Nowicki is welcomed

on stage by Kim MacMullan.

6. Last year’s Woman of the Year Alice Villalobos

with this year’s honorees Jackie Flaherty and Ryan

Nowicki.

7. Councilwoman Carolyn Petty reads a city

proclamation honoring Man of the Year Ryan

Nowicki.

8. Councilman Jeff Duclos reads a city proclamation

honoring Woman of the Year Jackie Flaherty.

9. Honorees Jackie Flaherty and Ryan Nowicki

(center) with Kim MacMullan, Jeff Duclos, Stacey

Armato, Alice Villalobos, Hany Fangary and Carolyn

Petty.

10. Past and current Hermosa Beach Men and

Women of the Year (left to right) Janice Brittain,

Jackie Flaherty, JR Reviczky, Ken Hartley, Ryan

Nowicki, Rick Koenig, Elaine Doerfling, Dr. Alice

Villalobos, Mike Flaherty, Ron Newman and Sam

Perotti.

3 4 5

6 7

8

9

10

20 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Brad N. Baker, Michael Petersen, Albro Lundy, Christine Daniels, Evan Koch, Kent Burton, Teresa Klinkner, Clint Wilson

Baker, Burton & Lundy, P.C.

No slowing down for giant-killing law firm

Baker, Burton & Lundy, the Hermosa Beach law firm with a

nationwide reputation and billions of dollars won for its

clients, shows no sign of slowing down as it enters its fifth

decade.

The attorneys would have plenty of laurels to rest on, if they

were so inclined. BBL has won more than $4 billion in verdicts

and settlements for Californians, along the way making roads

safer, and utility rates lower across the state.

The firm has at times spent hundreds of thousands of dollars

to battle cases that promised no profit, to protect harmed victims,

including those maimed in preventable accidents or exploited

by people in positions of power. BBL can truly boast

small-firm attention and large-firm results.

“We just want to see justice done,” said BBL partner Albro

Lundy.

Lundy heads the firm’s growing litigation arm, which recently

added attorney Michael Petersen, who was raised in the South

Bay. The team’s recent and current work includes the cases of:

• An English tourist wounded in an officer-involved shooting on

the Venice Beach Boardwalk;

• A wrongful death lawsuit from a collision of two planes off

Point Fermin;

• A physician accused of massively overcharging a medication-addicted

patient;

• A South Bay resident whose house began sinking, allegedly

in connection with a neighbor’s basement project; and

• Class action cases against storage companies accused of

false advertising and not disclosing kickbacks when selling insurance

to customers. BBL has assembled a multi-firm team to

tackle the cases.

Lundy also was preparing for a courtroom appearance in a

morgue negligence case of a hospital accused of releasing

the wrong body for burial, causing a family to lay to rest a 90-

year-old woman rather than their 50-year-old relative. Lundy

said the body was exhumed after the mix-up was discovered.

While BBL continues to expand its decorated practice, the

firm is beginning its third expansion of its storefront on Hermosa’s

iconic Pier Avenue, where it holds the distinction of the

longest standing owner-occupier.

The firm’s practice specialties include business, employment,

personal injury, elder abuse, real estate, estate planning and

probate litigation.

Partner Kent Burton devotes himself to real estate and business

transaction law with attorneys Clint Wilson and Teresa

Klinkner. Partner Brad Baker and bilingual attorney Christine

Daniels focus on estate planning, probate and trust litigation.

Baker has argued twice before the U.S. Supreme Court. Lundy

has won an affirmative verdict from the state Supreme Court

and the CAOC Trial Lawyer of the Year award, and works with

Petersen and Evan Koch, recognized as a Rising Star by Super-

Lawyers.

Petersen, the new kid on the block, had been clerking three

years for BBL until he passed the July bar and signed on as an

associate attorney in the litigation arm.

“It’s a great team,” Petersen said. “It’s a family environment

where we support each other and back each other up.”

BAKER, BURTON & LUNDY | 515 Pier Avenue, Hermosa Beach | (310) 376-9893 | info@bakerburtonlundy.com

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February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 21


Bridal Guide

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The Beanery is a great spot for events and special gatherings. Guests

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that they come to define all of the events before and after. A wedding is one of

the moments. The vision, planning, and execution of a wedding can be overwhelming

for many couples. Lolo Weddings & Events is a full-scale event planning

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and families at ease by flawlessly executing the perfect moments that make a wedding

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Schlichter & Shonack, LLP

DECORATED ATTORNEY JAMIE KEETON PROTECTS SOUTH BAY

RESIDENTS FROM LEGAL SLINGS AND ARROWS

When legal difficulties threaten the livelihood and security of

affluent South Bay residents, they can turn to decorated attorney

Jamie Keeton, who has saved clients millions of dollars,

and won more than $13 million in judgements and settlements.

Keeton, and her colleagues at the local Schlichter & Shonack, LLP

firm, aggressively represent clients from individuals to Fortune 500

companies, up and down the state and federal court systems.

Throughout, they remain dedicated to giving their clients individual

attention, and keeping their costs low.

Keeton says the life success of many South Bay residents makes

them targets for legal trouble, sometimes from unexpected sources

such as neighbors, ex-business partners, ex-spouses or domestic employees.

When such troubles strike, “Jamie is the go-to person,” founding

partner Kurt Schlichter said, pointing to her recognition by the Super

Lawyers rating service four years running.

“She’s the lawyer you want to nail down before the other guy

does,” Schlichter said.

Keeton represents plaintiffs and defendants in personal injury and

general civil litigation, and has handled cases ranging from assault

and battery at high-profile Orange County nightclubs to multimillion

dollar real estate litigation, including construction defect cases.

She handles all

phases of trials and

mediations, and is

backed by the rest of

the firm’s ten accomplished

lawyers.

And her sympathies

are always with the

people in her own

back yard.

“We’re not a big Century City firm, or a big downtown firm. You

won’t have to wait an hour and a half to meet with us for five minutes,”

she said.

“You’ll have our cell phone numbers, and you’ll run into us at

Trader Joe’s,” Schlichter said.

“We’ll hold your hand at 10 o’clock at night because you’re in litigation,

and it’s scary. Everything you’ve worked for could be at

risk,” Keeton said. “Big corporations rely on us, but you can get us on

the phone at night.”

Schlichter & Shonack, LLP | 2381 Rosecrans Ave., Suite 326 | El Segundo | 310-643-0111 | jlk@sandsattorneys.com

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22 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Bridal Guide

Palos Verdes Golf Club

offers elegance, views

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Whether you are interested in hosting your ceremony, reception, engagement

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(310) 375-2533. PVGC.com


February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 23


each people

The

Unsettler

Mark Sundeen and the search for the good life

by Mark McDermott

Steve and Luci at the founding of their Montana farm thirty

years ago. Photo courtesy Lifeline Produce

Mark Sundeen was three and a

half years into his book, “The

Unsettlers: The Search for the

Good Life in Today’s America,” when

he gave it to a friend to read. He’d already

written two revisions of the book,

which was about three couples — in

Missouri, Detroit, and Montana —

who’d pared down their lives to the

bare necessities and become farmers.

His editor had accepted the book, and

his publisher, Penguin, was completely

behind the project.

Then his friend, who also happened

to be an editor, told him she couldn’t

get past page 150 of the 350-page book.

“Because I couldn’t tell why you wrote

it,” she told him.

The critique gave him pause. Another

friend had remarked at how much she

was looking forward to the book and

what it would say about Cedar, Sundeen’s

fiancee, who was raised in rural

Montana and homeschooled, without

television or running water. “I’m so interested

to see how you are going to

write about Ceder, and her being raised

back-to-the-land,” the friend said.

“And I was like, ‘Huh. That’s not even

in the book at all,” Sundeen recalled.

The book was about people searching

for a rough-hewn authenticity amid the

blinking splendor and dross that is

American life today. It finally occurred

to Sundeen why he was writing about

this topic. What connected the couples

in the book wasn’t just the fact that

they’d all become farmers. What connected

them was Sundeen himself. The

search he was writing about was actually

his own.

He was at a crossroads. After a lone

wolf adult life spent wandering with

few commitments and no permanent

home (as he notes in the book, he’d

lived at three dozen different addresses,

not counting the many years in which

he lived primarily in tents), Sundeen

found himself, at 41, approaching middle-age

and engaged to be married. Life

no longer seemed boundless in its possibilities.

He was facing domesticity for

the first time and wanted to know how

to do it well, while maintaining the values

— foremost a love of the wild and

the wander — that had always governed

his best impulses. He wanted to

learn how to make a stand.

The first two drafts of the book did

not include the word “I.” In his final revision,

the book included his own story.

“I wanted to see if living along lines

of radical simplicity brought a deeper,

truer relationship to land, livelihood,

economy, and spirit,” he wrote. “I

wanted to learn the old-fashioned con-

24 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


cept of household, a meaningful

mix of work, family, and home.

How far might we go in rejecting

the compromises of contemporary

life — and what did we gain or sacrifice?

What I wanted to learn was

how to lead a good life.”

His search, he realized, began

with a frazzling incident with a

piece of fried chicken he’d experienced

at a supermarket on the outskirts

of Missoula, Montana.

He and Cedar were living in a little

cottage on the banks of the Bitterroot

River, seven miles outside of

town, “where we grew vegetables

and canned peach jam and from

our bed watched bald eagles nest in

the cottonwoods,” Sundeen wrote.

Much about this was idyllic. He bicycled

into town every day, where

he kept an office for writing. One

day, on his way back home, he

stopped at the market to pick up

some butter. He wanted ethical butter

— that is, produced without

chemicals, humanely, and locally

sourced. But the cheapest slab of

this kind of butter was more than

six bucks, which infuriated him. He

walked to the non-organic section of

the supermarket for mass market

butter, half the price, and while

doing so spied the deli and its

ready-made fried chicken. His mind

floated back to childhood in Manhattan

Beach, to the treat of going

to the Kentucky Fried Chicken on

Sepulveda and buying buckets of

chicken to take to the beach. Cedar

had been raised vegetarian, and his

life now cohered to hers; their

meals together, which he treasured,

took hours to make. They usually

ate under a dawning bed of stars at

about 10 p.m. “The downside of the

garden-to-table gourmet was that to

get dinner from garden to table took

For. Fucking. Ever,” he wrote.

At the deli, the impulse of instant

gratification overtook Sundeen, and

he soon found himself gnawing a

fryer in the parking lot and hiding

the greasy evidence from his soonto-be

wife with a pre-packaged towelette

before biking back to his

countryside idyll with some six dollar

butter.

“Simple living was not so easy,”

he wrote. “It wasn’t even simple.

What was simple was hot ‘n’ ready

Chester’s fried thighs.”

The search, which led Sundeen

through large swaths of American

history as well as to farms in Montana,

Missouri, and Detroit, was the

book that would follow.

The Unsettlers

One of Sundeen’s heroes, the

poet/farmer/novelist/prophet Wendell

Berry, wrote a poem called

“Manifesto: The Mad Farmer’s

Liberation Front.” It begins,

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“Love the quick profit, the annual raise,

vacation with pay. Want more

of everything ready-made. Be afraid

to know your neighbors and to die.

And you will have a window in your head.

Not even your future will be a mystery

any more. Your mind will be punched in a card

and shut away in a little drawer.

When they want you to buy something

they will call you. When they want you

to die for profit they will let you know.”

“The Unsettlers” begins with an epitaph by writer Jim Harrison, which

restates Berry’s sentiment a bit less caustically: “The danger of civilization,

or course, is that you will piss away your life on nonsense.”

As best he could, Sundeen tried to leave the stultifying parts of civilization

behind at the outset of his adult life. The Mira Costa Class of ‘88 graduate

studied at Stanford as an undergrad and then USC for grad school,

but thereafter departed from anything approximating conventional middle

class life. He lived in a tent outside Moab, Utah, for a while, and spent the

better part of a decade living out of a backpack as an Outward Bound instructor

across the American West. He later lived among bullfighters in

Mexico and fishermen in Alaska and subsequently wrote books about both.

Finally, about eight years ago, he crossed paths with an old friend, Daniel

Suelo, who was living in a cave in Utah and had utterly deviated from any

convention, refusing to use money. The book that followed, “The Man Who

Quit Money,” was nationally lauded and firmly established what Sundeen’s

beat as a writer was — seekers, like himself, going against the grain of the

hyper-material American way of life.

The proposal for the book that would follow was submitted as a paragraph.

“This is going to be a book about dropouts who tried to live a more

simple life,” Sundeen proposed. Penguin was all in; they gave him carte

blanche to pursue his curiosity. He was two years into the project before

he found the subjects who would animate the book.

The first story in “The Unsettlers” is about a young couple, Ethan Hughes

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26 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


and Sarah Wilcox, who decided

they wanted to homestead and

start a family and wrote down a list

of 20 qualities that a potential

home should have — a list that included

affordability, a year-round

water source, long growing seasons,

no building codes, no use of

electricity or petroleum, nearby

opera (Sarah was a singer) and

ocean (Ethan was an ocean-lover),

all within five miles of a train station

and biking distance of a college

town.

They found 160 acres in northern

Missouri for $160,000 and

bought it, sight unseen, foregoing

only the opera and ocean requirements.

They arrived by train late

one night and, with a little guidance

from a friendly townsperson,

bicycled out to their new home.

Sarah was five months pregnant.

Their homestead would become

more than a farm. They named it

the Possibility Alliance and hoped

it would become both a community

and place of learning. Influenced

by Gandhi — as was

Sundeen, who had legendary Mira

Costa free thinker and teacher Dr.

Marilyn Whirry as a key influence

in his high school years — they

wrote a charter titled, “A Movement

for the Upliftment of All Beings.”

They built it, and people came.

Over the years, thousands would

come and study sustainable farming

practices and earth-conscious

spirituality at the farm. Sundeen,

upon first discovering Ethan and

Sarah, enthusiastically called his

wife — whom he’d left shortly

after their honeymoon to do his reporting

— and told her he’d found

a place they should investigate together,

one that had both simple

living and spirituality. “I already

have a spiritual community,” she

dryly responded.

The second of the stories took

Sundeen to the unexpected heart

of the urban farming movement, a

farm named Brother Nature Produce

that had sprouted up among

the ruins of inner city Detroit. It

was operated by a tough young

woman named Olivia Hubert and

her maverick-minded partner,

Greg Willendar. Theirs is a story of

going back-to-the-land without a

shred of hippie-dippy sentiment,

just two hard-headed people fed up

with the decay of their native city

and drawn to living a life firmly

within their own control.

The third story focuses on a couple,

Luci Brieger and Steve Elliott,

who went back to the land three

decades ago. Their farm had

started when they bought a small

plot of land along Sweathouse

Creek in the Bitterroot Mountains

of Montana and pitched a teepee.

They not only built a thriving organic

farm but raised two kids.

Luci, like all the women in “The

Unsettlers,” is the unsentimental

backbone of the operation.

“She insisted they had not gone

back to the land,” Sundeen wrote.

“She would say we all live on the

land, whether we know it or not.

She did not drop out. There was, to

her way of thinking, nowhere to

drop out to. She never yearned for

a simple life, a sun-filled yoga studio,

a coop full of chickens, tomatoes

reddening on the windowsill.

She is not vegetarian, vegan, macrobiotic,

or gluten-free...She is not

the serene earth mother who who

accepts the world and its inhabitants

just as they are. Even after

birthing a child in a teepee without

hot running water, she insists that

she is neither radical nor extreme.”

What Sundeen discovered is

that, contrary to his book proposal,

none of his subjects were dropouts.

Sundeen cont. on page 33

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each people

El Camino College 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award recipients Laura

Schenasi, George Nakano, Eleanor Bersano and Helen Young (accepting

on behalf of her husband William Young), with El Camino College President

Dena Maloney.

ECC DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI HONORED

by Kevin Cody

The country’s former number one ranked college speaker, a former

Torrance councilman and state assemblyman, a 30-year educator and

one of Los Angeles; most successful nonprofit fundraisers were honored

at the 2016 El Camino College Distinguished Alumni dinner at the

Torrance Marriott on Thursday, January 13.

The former college speaker was actor William Young, who currently

plays Dr. Rollie Guthrie on the CBS medical drama “Code Black.” Young

previously played Frank Mitchell on the UPN hit show “Moesha” and had

starring roles in the Academy Award-nominated films “A Soldier’s Story”

and “District 9.”

Young was unable to attend the awards dinner because he was called

back to the set of “Code Black” late that afternoon. But his wife Helen recalled

his upbringing by a single mom in Watts and the inspiration to act

her husband discovered at El Camino College. Young led the school's debate

team to its first National Forensic Speech Championship. He subsequently

went to the University of Southern California, where he led the

USC debate team to the national championship and was twice ranked the

number one college speaker in the nation.

Honoree George Nakano grew up in Boyle Heights and spent four years

of his childhood in a World War II internment camp. He began his professional

career in Watts, as a teacher at Jordan High School. He served on

the Torrance City Council for 15 years and in the State Assembly from

1998 until 2004, representing the South Bay. Nakano holds a 5th degree

black belt in Kendo and founded the Torrance Kendo Dojo.

He thanked El Camino for “providing the foundation for a new direction

in my my life.”

For honoree Laura Schenasi, El Camino offered the opportunity for redemption

after she was denied admission to the University of Southern

California, which her father and grandfather had attended.

“El Camino professors paved the way for my subsequent admission to

USC,” Schenasi said. She spent 19 years in fundraising at USC, before being

named executive vice president of the Torrance Memorial Foundation in

2001. Since then she has increased the foundation’s fundraising from an

average of $750,000 per year to $17 million a year.

The evening’s fourth honoree was Eleanor Bersano, who taught at St.

Anthony of Padua Elementary School in Gardena for 30 years. In 2015,

Bersano received the Gardena Valley Lions Club “Lion of the Year” award

for her years of community service.

She credited El Camino for preparing her not only a life in academia,

but also a life in community activism. B

Honoree Laura Schenasi (center), with Colleen Farrell, Mary Matson, Sally

Eberhard, Judith Gassner, Elaine McRae, Sherry Kramer and Judy Leach.

Continental Development’s Richard and Melanie Lundquist, Torrance Memorial

Medical Director Dr. Mark Lurie and (standing) Torrance Memorial CEO

Craig Leach and 66th District State Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi.

Kate Choi, Nancy Tonnis, Andrea Salas and David Kartsonis of the El

Camino College Foundation.

28 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


each service

PHOTOS BY ADRIENNE SLAUGHTER

HERMOSA BEACH KIWANIS

hosts Taste At The Beach

H

ermosa Beach Kiwanis Club hosted its 8th annual Taste At The

Beach Fine Wine, Craft Beer & Food Extravaganza on Sunday,

Aug. 28 on the Hermosa Beach Community Center patio. The

event featured 28 local restaurants and craft breweries, a silent auction

and live music by the Brian Sisson Trio. Proceeds benefited local South

Bay charities.

1. The Source Cafe owner

Amber Caudle with Cindy

Van Pelt.

2. Michael and Julie Foster

and Kiwanis Club's Adrienne

Slaughter with

Eric and Anna Weber.

3. Fish Shop owners Vera

Jimenez and Brian Herlihy

with Hermosa Beach Kiwanis

past president

Lisa Shea.

4. Kathy and Brian Sisson

with sister Terry Bose.

5. Entertaining Friends

Catering’s Anthony Eulloque

and Jason Cordero.

6. Ragin' Cajun Cafe

owners Lisa and Steve

Hodges.

7. Kiwanis members Bob

and Judi McEachen with

Dana and Mike Miller.

8. Kiwanis board member

Mark Goldstein, Scholb

Brewing Company's Patrick

Schulz and King Harbor

Brewing owner Tom Dunbabin.

9. Bottle Inn’s Silvio Petoletti

and wife Darlene.

1

2 3

4 5

6

7

8

9

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 29


food

Place of Masterly Skill

Ramen Shack Takumiya owner Yuka Sakakishi.

Ramen Shack

Takumiya

is hard to find,

absent of ambiance

and worthy of its name

by Richard Foss

The Japanese are generally regarded as a

modest people who aren’t inclined to

boasting. While humility is prized in

other regards, skill at traditional arts is something

to be proud of. This is probably why a

specialist noodle restaurant in Redondo Beach

has a name that translates as “Place of Masterly

Skill.”

Ramen Shack Takumiya doesn't look like

much from the outside, and if you only have

the address without directions it is hard to

find. This may be the lowest visibility restaurant

with a Pacific Coast Highway address,

not only locally but along all 655 miles of it.

The location in the rear of a shopping center

is so insulated from the street that it’s typical

to drive past it while looking for it.

Once you are inside, it is no more impressive.

The walls in the tiny, oddly shaped space

are painted in pastels, but are otherwise bare.

It looks like they just moved in and haven’t

gotten around to decorating even though they

have been open since November. There are

about six tables in front and a few seats at a

counter in the back, making this look like the

most minimalist of diners.

The space may not be welcoming, but the

people are. On both visits we were greeted by

a cheerful server who was happy to explain

A bowl of white tonkotsu ramen features a

mildly seasoned but intense pork stock

with egg, scallions, ginger, bamboo

shoots, and roasted pork. Photos by Brad

Jacobson (CivicCouch.com)

the occasionally cryptic menu. Most

items are variations on ramen noodles, as

might be expected. They’re offered in

soup with a choice of eight different

broths, including coconut flavored and

vegetarian. You can also get those noodles

Tsukemen style, served cold with a bowl

of warm sauce for dipping. I had considered

ordering these but my server mentioned

that this is a summer dish; the

sauce cools quickly so only the first part

of your meal is warm unless you hurry.

Since it was a chilly evening on both visits

I decided to wait a few months and come

back to try those. There are also some

non-noodle items like poke rice bowls,

fried rice, and a few appetizers.

I tried three of the appetizers: home-

30 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


made gyoza dumplings and both seaweed and regular salad. Dumplings or

a few other starters and salad can be added to your ramen order for as

little as $3.50, and it’s a good choice since it turns a bowl of noodle soup

into a three course meal. The gyozas I got were the usual Japanese ravioli

stuffed with pork and pan-fried. The dough had the firm texture you only

get when they’re freshly made. Packaged gyozas have become an increasingly

popular bar snack and restaurant appetizer. Some people don’t know

how good they can be, and this is a good place to find out.

The salads were fairly standard but well made. The American-style green

salad had a tangy ginger and miso dressing. I liked the seaweed salad better,

but that’s because the moist, cool crunch goes so well with spicy food.

And though Japanese food does not have a reputation for being spicy, that’s

exactly what I had on my first visit. Ramen Shack Takumiya offers a spicy

tonkotsu ramen broth, rated from level one to five. I had ordered a two,

figuring that I wanted it mild enough to share with my wife. After I tasted

the first spoonful of it I wondered what level five must be like. I know that

it is impossible for anybody to lick the surface of the sun, but that’s what

I imagined.

But I should back up a moment and explain tonkotsu, which is a broth

made by boiling down pork bones for a long time at a very low temperature.

When this is done correctly and the stock is cooled and skimmed it

creates a silky, rich stock that makes fantastic soup. At this restaurant you

can get the tonkotsu with a seasoned salt base, a soy sauce base, or the

spicy stuff I ordered. To the stock you choose, the chef adds homemade

noodles, marinated bamboo shoots, mushrooms, scallions, a hard boiled

egg, spinach, mild red sushi ginger, and some pieces of kombu seaweed.

The whole thing is finished with slices of Japanese-style chashu pork. This

is not the same as the Chinese stuff with the bright red coating, but extremely

tender slow-roasted pork with a concentrated flavor.

At level two, the spicy broth had a balance between heat and spice that

was just about perfect, the ingredients enhanced but not obscured. The

chili heat played differently with the earthy pork flavor, with the lightly

vinegared bamboo shoot, the sharp onion and vegetable, and as the heat

became more cumulative I was sweating freely but eating it happily. I got

a good meal; my wife got a good laugh watching me.

She was sensibly enjoying her ramen in a chicken and miso broth that

was flavored with some bonito flakes that gave it an agreeable seafood

tang. The ingredients were slightly different – hers had some fishcake and

meaty mushroom chunks, but no grated sushi ginger. This was Japanese

comfort food, lots of fresh flavors combined with subtle dexterity, and she

too drained her big bowl to the bottom.

We were back a few nights later, when she ordered the pork ramen with

a salt base and I decided that I wanted to try a non-noodle item. I selected

a small plate of curry fried rice and a “salmon flake and salmon roe” bowl.

This was a rice bowl topped half with cooked salmon that had been crumbled

along with shredded seaweed, half with salmon caviar. I have always

enjoyed salmon roe for its bright, lightly salty flavor and the way it pops

when you eat it. It’s unusual to serve it this way alongside cooked salmon,

but it works.

The curry rice was another surprise, because it wasn’t what I expected.

Many Japanese restaurants offer rice topped with a mild curry sauce along

with vegetables, usually peas and carrots. This was rice with mushrooms,

scallions, and egg fried with curry powder, with some grated ginger on the

side. It had none of the heat of an Indian curry but was a fragrant simple

dish. The two items together were a fine light meal. Tea, soft drinks, and

juice are offered but no alcohol, and so are two desserts: mochi ice cream

and a Japanese sweet red bean cake shaped like a fish. Those fish cookies

were cute, but we were already full both times so haven’t tried them, yet.

Our bills on both visits were low, averaging about fifteen bucks each,

making this one of the great dining bargains in the South Bay. There is indeed

masterly skill here at a miserly price. Ramen Shack Takumiya is a

place worth seeking out.

Ramen Shack Takumiya is at 1550 South Pacific Coast Hwy. in Redondo,

behind Smart & Final. Open daily except Tuesday 11:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. and 5:30

p.m. – 10 p.m., parking lot, wheelchair access OK but incline from parking

spaces. No alcohol, some vegetarian items. No online menu. Phone 310-316-

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February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 31


people

WOMEN ON THE MARCH,

asserting women’s rights

Over 2,000 women gathered at King

Harbor in Redondo Beach to march

in solidarity with other women

across the nation, on the day following President

Donald Trump’s inauguration. Organizers

said it wasn’t a protest, but an

affirmation of women’s rights. The atmosphere

was festive and police said there were

no troublesome incidents.

1

2

PHOTOS BY KEVIN CODY

3 4 5

1. Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi and Rolling Hills

Estates Councilwoman Velveth Schmitz with her

children Anisley and Hadley.

2. Connor, Cameron, Lara and Blake Flynn of

Manhattan Beach.

3. March co-organizer Jennifer Moore, speaker

Alice Crisci and son Dante.

4. Redondo Beach grandma Joanie Shapiro.

5. Redondo Beach Councilman Christian Horvath

tells protesters, “The only thing that

trickles down is fear.”

6

6. Marchers went north on Harbor Drive to

Herondo Street and then up to Pacific Coast

Highway.

7. Debra Galliani with Alex, Krista and Dane

Capo, of Hermosa Beach.

8. Pat Wooley, of Manhattan Beach.

9. Yessenia Montes, of Hawthorne, with Carol

Reznichek, of Hermosa Beach.

10. Shannon and Heidi Robley, of Torrance,

with Hanna Hawkins of Redondo Beach.

7

8

9

11. Kathleen Davis, Phyllis Pennings and

Mindy Freiss, of Hermosa Beach.

12. Kristy and Tina Louise, of Redondo Beach.

10

11 12

32 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Sundeen cont. from page 27

“I was really inspired by these people,” he said. “The book is not about

dropouts, ultimately. These are people more engaged with the problems of

society than most of us...And none of these people were wearing a hairshirt

and suffering. They are not martyrs. They've actually found work they love

to do. And so they find work that is meaningful and by doing that work

they are finding some satisfaction, or abundance. That is the takeaway. It's

not that everyone needs to be a farmer; it's that everyone needs to find

work that has meaning.”

In the end, “The Unsettlers” is about many things. Sundeen has a broad

curiosity and the gift of delivering succinct histories — in this case, touching

on everything from Gandhi’s ashram to the roots of the back-to-the land

movement (which is part of what inspired the founding of the U.S., Sundeen

notes, quoting the second president, John Adams: “Let us Eat Potatoes

and drink Water. Let us wear Canvass, and undressed sheepskins, rather

than submit to the unrighteous and ignominious Domination that is prepared

for Us.”) to the Great Migration of African Americans to the industrial

north of the U.S. and the subsequent White Flight from urban centers that

gave rise to suburbanization.

Perhaps most fundamentally it is also about Sundeen learning the fine

art of domesticity with his patient and poetically no-nonsense wife. “You

are attracted to the ideas, but living back-to-the-land is not an intellectual

decision,” Cedar tells him at one point. “People do it because they love

it...You don’t like to rough it. You don’t like to be cold, or to split wood in

the snow. You don’t like to garden. You don’t like to fix things. You like to

hire someone to do it. You like to take a hot shower every night.”

He couldn’t argue. The book he would write would ultimately be about

the lessons he learned on this search, the arc of his journey into understanding

the freedom of fidelity. He wrote to learn, and thereby came to

recognize a home when he’d found it. The unsettler settled.

“The paradox of matrimony is that while the bond feels eternal, it tethers

us to the finite,” Sundeen wrote. “The people in this book believe — and

show — that sacrifice leads to abundance. And that’s the same allure of

marriage, that by giving up one element of freedom we gain something

greater.”

Wendell Berry understood this. His manifesto also ends on a domestic

note:

“Go with your love to the fields.

Lie down in the shade. Rest your head

in her lap. Swear allegiance

to what is nighest your thoughts.

As soon as the generals and the politicos

can predict the motions of your mind,

lose it. Leave it as a sign

to mark the false trail, the way

you didn’t go. Be like the fox

who makes more tracks than necessary,

some in the wrong direction.

Practice resurrection.”

Mark Sundeen visits {pages} bookstore (904 Manhattan Avenue, Manhattan

Beach) on Saturday, Feb. 11 at 6 p.m. B

Author Mark Sundeen,

a Mira Costa alum,

reads at

Pages bookstore on

February 11.

Photo by Isan Brant

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 33


each surf

A SURFER’S STROLL DOWN

the Redondo Avenues

O

n very rare occasions in the South Bay, the

swell, wind, tide and sun work together to

produce spitting, well lit, overhead barrels.

Tuesday, January 24 was one of those days for Redondo

Avenue surfers.

1. Big wave surfer Alex Gray, of

Palos Verdes.

2. ET Surfboard’s Andre Anorga.

3. Chris Brown, of Hermosa

Beach.

4. Spyder Surf’s Chris Broman.

5. Longboarder Richie Hudson

shows his versatility.

6. Champion paddleboarder

PHOTOS BY BRAD JACOBSON (CIVICCOUCH.COM)

Jack Bark, of Palos Verdes.

7. Jalian Johnson, of Palos

Verdes.

8. Longboarder Kris Hall.

9. Noah Collins, of Manhattan

Beach, demonstrates his signature

backhand power.

10. Body Glove filmmaker Scott

Smith on the other side of the

camera.

11. Chris Wells, of Manhattan

Beach.

12. Colin Moran, of Orange

County.

13. Pro surfer Matt Pagan, of El

Segundo.

14. Hippy Tree surfer Kyle

Brown, of Manhattan Beach.

1

2

3 4

5

6

34 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


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9 10

11

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February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 35


Belle o

Smog City’s Laurie

in the LA c

Laurie and Jonathan Porter of

Smog City Brewing Company.

Photo by Brad Jacobson


f the Beer

Porter takes a leading role

raft beer movement

by Ed Solt

Craft brewers Jonathan and Laurie Porter

sought out a location for their own brewery

in 2012, on the one year anniversary of

founding Smog City Brewing Company. The Torrance

couple had already produced over 300 barrels

at The Tustin Brewing Company in Orange County,

where Jonathan had been the head brewer since

2008. His Groundwork Coffee Porter won gold at

the 2012 Great American Beer Festival.

While Jonathan brewed, Laurie pounded the

pavement, setting up distribution and building relationships

in the craft beer community.

“We scouted locations for nine months,” Laurie

said. “We settled on Torrance because of its robust

culture, as well as it being a unique and unknown

city — I mean this in a good way.”

Strand Brewing Company, the brewery that put

the South Bay on the craft beer map, and Monkish

Brewing Company, the brewery that helped to further

sophisticate the South Bay’s craft beer palate

by focusing on Belgian style ales, were the only

other breweries in town. Five years later, Torrance

has over 10 breweries.

“A rising tide raises all boats,” Laurie said. “We’re

not against each other. If anything, we’re against the

macro brews, like Budweiser.”

Last May, SCBC celebrated its anniversary by collaborating

with El Segundo Brewing Company. The

now legendary party included a free shuttle between

the breweries.

“Most of the breweries to come up in the last

seven years are family owned,” she said. “The husbands

are brewing while the wives handle the business

side.

“Equality has been around since day one,” she

added. “Just look at Three Weavers Brewing Company,

founded and brewed by women, and Frances

Lopez, aka ‘Franny Fullpint,’ the executive director

of the Los Angeles County Brewers Guild (LABG).

Women aren’t marginalized.”

Laurie was recently elected president of the

LABG, after having served as vice president for two

years.

“The LABG is very important. With 56 LA

County breweries, we need a central organization

to bring us together. Through our involvement in

the California Craft Brewers Association at the state

capital, we protect local craft beer business,” she

said.

The LABG organizes the two biggest LA Craft

beer events — LA Beer Week (now in its ninth year)

and the Los Angeles Beer & Food Festival.

“During LABW, we host educational discussions

with noted figures in the local craft beer culture,”

Porter said. “We don’t tell people what to drink or

how to drink it. Our goal is to provide the information

and let the consumer make the decision. Try a

flight [two- to six-ounce samplings] to explore new

beers and determine what you like.”

SCBC recently opened its first satellite tasting

room at SteelCraft Long Beach, a cluster of likeminded

sustainable businesses housed in upcycled

shipping containers.

“The days of shopping in big huge boxes are going

away,” Laurie said. “People want to know

where the things they buy are coming from.

They want to support independently owned

shops that share their values.”

SCBC has kept to a slow growth path. Instead

of building distribution numbers, SCBC

has focused on developing a strong, wellrounded

core beer program with brews like

Sabre-Toothed Squirrel (winner of the 2016

World Beer Cup silver medal in Philadelphia

and a bronze finisher at the Great American

Beer Fest in the amber ale/red ale category);

Hoptonic IPA, and the Coffee Porter. SCBC has

also explored the wine barrel-aged sour ale

realm, resulting in Benny and the Bretts and

Smog City Cuddle Bug. On the strong ale side,

SCBC’s experimentation with bourbon barrel

aging transformed The Nothing Imperial Stout

into a once-a-year release called the Infinite

Wishes Bourbon Aged Imperial Stout.

SCBC recently expanded into several neighboring

buildings and separated the different

beers and brewing processes into three phases.

“The expansion allows us to really take a

step forward.” Laurie said.

“We feel nothing but gratitude for the city of

Torrance and its focus on small businesses,”

she said. “Torrance has become a craft beer

hub. When people think of craft beer in LA,

they think of downtown L.A. and Torrance. It

has also put a spotlight on the South Bay and

our rich culture.”

Smog City Brewing Company is located at

1901 Del Amo Blvd., Torrance. Tap room hours

are Tuesday through Thursday, 3 to 10 p.m., Friday

and Saturday noon to 10 p.m. and Sunday

noon to 8 p.m. For more information visit Smog-

CityBrewing.com. B

SCBC’s “Infinite Wishes” and

“Sabre-Toothed Squirrel.” Photo by Ed Solt

February 9, 2017 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 37


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Installation Lunch. The donation is the auxiliary’s largest-ever donation and

will go toward improvements in the North Patient Tower.

The more than 900-member Auxiliary raised the money through various fundraisers

and proceeds from the Torrance Memorial Auxiliary Gift Shop. The record donation

was the result of an increase in gift shop sales under the volunteer management

of Gail Long and Tina Trudnowski and their leadership team.

The Auxiliary also organized a variety of fundraisers. Volunteers donated in excess

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Torrance Memorial Medical Center Auxiliary board members Gail Long, Tina

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Sally Eberhard, medical director Dr Mark Lurie, Laura Schenasi of the Torrance

Memorial Foundation.

Torrance Memorial Medical Center Auxiliary 2017 Board of Directors (front

row) Helen Metzler, Gail Long, Tina Trudnowski, Helen Connelly and Nancy

Rouse.(Back row) Jean O’Dell, Krissie Douglas, Bea Mantico, Tracy Isenberg,

Stuart Wilson, Dennis Frandsen, Janet Bill, Mercy Wilson and Donna Cohen.

38 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • February 9, 2017


Calendar cont. from page 9

a fresh and funny take on sibling rivalry and conflict resolution. Co-sponsored

by Pages: a bookstore. 11 a.m. 1320 Highland Ave. 310-545-8595.

Get ready to shop

Mark the dates for the first-ever President’s Day Sidewalk Sale to support

local retail in downtown Hermosa Beach. Saturday, Sunday 11 a.m. - 6

p.m. In-store events for kids, discounts and specials on shopping and dining.

Downtown Hermosa Beach. Hbchamber.net.

Fashion Show & Luncheon

The annual Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach Auxiliary Designer

Fashion Show, luncheon and silent auction raises funds for the Pediatric

Intensive Care Unit and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 10 a.m. Hyatt

Regency Long Beach, 200 South Pine Ave. Tickets are $95. For more information,

contact Margie Penny at (562) 431-9650 or

marjipenny@charter.net. Millerchildrenshospitallb.org.

Sunday, February 19

Drumming for a reason

Rock your Sunday and spend some time with families dancing and

singing. Free To Be Me Family Friendly Drum Circle meets at waters edge

of the Hermosa Beach Pier. Noon - 3 p.m. Bring friends, family, drums,

and percussion instruments (otherwise provided) and celebrate the rhythm

of life (no experience necessary). For more information contact Director

Sabina Sandoval at 310-944-5475 or visit freetobemedrumcircle.com.

Fur Festival

Join Cupid & Canines Valentine’s Benefit to enjoy with your 4-legged

best friend. Celebrate with treats, giveaways, doggy body art, DIY clay

paw prints, photo booth and mingling with fellow dog lovers. Enter your

dog in the high jump competition and meet the Zoom Room trainers who

will answer any training questions and share tips. Proceeds benefit 1FUR1

Foundation, a nonprofit helping animal assisted programs. 4 - 6 p.m. Zoom

Room, 2729 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Redondo Beach. For ticket ($18-50)

purchase visit eventbrite.com/e/cupid-canines-valentines-benefit-tickets-

31118042904.

Tuesday, February 21

I [heart] MB

City of Manhattan Beach Cultural Arts Division invites the public to the

opening reception of I ♥ MB, a juried exhibition celebrating the artistic

talents of Manhattan Beach residents. 4 - 6 p.m. Manhattan Beach City

Hall, 1400 Highland Ave. On display until March 16. Admission is free.

For a list of future art exhibitions visit ci.manhattan-beach.ca.us/city-officials/parks-and-recreation/cultural-arts/exhibition.

Career refresher

Do you need to update your resume, brush up on interviewing or just

need some direction about your job search? Then join this free introductory

meeting to The Gals Starting Over Career Workshop. Learn about the

workshop, the process, materials and meet other women in transition and

the coaches. 7 - 8:30 p.m. Workshops begins March 4. St. Andrew’s Presbyterian

Church, 301 Avenue D, Redondo Beach. info@GalsStartingOver.

org or (857) 998-8858.

Wednesday, February 22

Five-0 film

Hermosa’s Five-0 Senior Center will be screening the 2016 thriller The

Girl on the Train, beginning at noon. $1 suggested donation. Coffee, candy

and popcorn provided! 710 Pier Ave. 310-318-0280.

Noir classic

View and discuss the classic 1941 film The Maltese Falcon directed by

John Huston and starring Humphrey Bogart and Mary Astor. 6 p.m. at the

Manhattan Beach Library. Ages 13 and up. This is part of the NEA Big

Read, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership

with Arts Midwest presented by Shakespeare at Play. 1320 Highland Ave.

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