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Fleeting tastes: A cautionary tale of public art: Other Voices

There is a sad little strip of asphalt just off El Camino Real in Burlingame, upon which sits a magnificent statue in bronze of a uniformed gentleman on a horse. Nestled between a strip mall and a gas station, the statue is without a label. It appears to be of early-20th-century origin, but so far I’ve not been able to properly identify it. Clearly, some civic body once went to a lot of trouble to have this piece of public art created and installed. With the passage of time and changing taste, this tribute in public art to a long-ago hero has been largely forgotten on the Peninsula.

It is a reminder, if we needed one, of the short half-life of tastes in public art – especially problematic in a region where things change as quickly as they do in California.

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Letters to the Editor

Plan aims to retain longtime businesses

Having just passed by Maltby’s restaurant, I was reminded of the difficulties and the Sword of Damocles that hangs over retailers and restaurateurs in our small downtown.

Fueled by our wonderful but outlandish real estate values, when their buildings change hands, merchants face the terror of outrageous rent increases and lapsing leases that put their future in Los Altos in peril – as it has with Maltby’s, which seems to be hanging by a thread. Some years ago, this predicament took out good old Mac’s Tea Room, and there is the same threat hovering over each retailer in town.

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Letters to the Editor

Construction zone is speed trap for motorists

After more than 40 years of citation-free driving, I received a speeding ticket in the construction corridor on Foothill Expressway between Grant Road and the Fremont Avenue off-ramp.

Two motorcycle police officers were ticketing drivers off almost every light change at the Grant Road cross street. You come off of the light and then must immediately merge and potentially miss the 35 mph sign, as I did, that is approximately 1,500 feet from the actual construction corridor.

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Green, er, drought-tolerant thumbs: Editorial

Summer is upon us in all its endless sunshine, offering patriotic celebrations of independence, barbecues, vacations and brown lawns. We have our thumbs ready for another round of local news commentary.

Thumbs-up: To Judy Miner, newly named chancellor of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District. Miner, making the transition from president of Foothill College to the chancellor’s office, was the right – and obvious – choice among the four applicants. Based on her stellar track record at Foothill, we’re confident that Miner will guide one of the best community college districts in the state to greater heights.

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The death knell of suburbia: A Piece of My Mind

The orchards are gone. The single-story ranch house is seen as a waste of valuable land and air space. An eight-lane freeway thunders past the bridle paths in Los Altos Hills. But nothing has signaled the death of suburbia more strongly than the announcement last month that Sunset, the “Magazine of Western Living,” is abandoning its rambling, garden-focused headquarters in Menlo Park and relocating to an urban shopping/restaurant hub in Oakland.

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An ode to nirvana's neighbor: The Villaj Idiut

July. It’s my favorite month.

It’s the month when my family takes our annual vacation to a family camp in the Sierra Nevada, for which we say the first day of it is the best day of the year, and the day we are leaving the worst day of the year. That day, our kids start the 358-day countdown to the next “best day of the year.”

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Resident takes issue with Stevens Creek Trail column: Other Voices

Following is a response to Editor Bruce Barton’s “Editor’s Notebook” on the Stevens Creek Trail project (“What’s driving resistance to Stevens Creek Trail?” June 17).

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