Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, October 27, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page A:3

lack of penalty imposed when they didn’t. City 
Manager Gabriel Engeland admitted that better 
management on the city’s part was needed moving 
forward. The proposed changes will be discussed 
further by the Planning Commission before 
bringing the matter back to the Council.

First Soft-Story and Unreinforced Masonry 

 In a presentation from Planning Commission 
member Bob Spears, with the help of structural 
engineer, Rod Spears, first soft-story and 
unreinforced masonry buildings (mainly apartment 
structures) were broken into categories of whether 
they met standard retrofit requirements that would 
deem the structures safe during an earthquake. 

 In definition, a soft-story building is a multi-
story building in which one or more floors have 
windows, wide doors, and large unobstructed 
commercial spaces in places where a shear wall 
would normally be required for stability as a matter 
of earthquake engineering design. Typical buildings 
are apartments located over a ground-level which 
large openings, such as a parking garage.

 In 1991, a soft-story apartment complex in 
Northridge collapsed on the lower parking garage 
during an earthquake, killing 16 people. 

 During “drive-by” inspections, Bob and Rod 
Spears found that in some cases apartments had 
two floors sitting atop a parking area. Thirty-
three structures were found to have “tuck under” 
parking. Thirty-three properties need further 
review as the view from outside was not enough 
to determine safety of the structures. Fifty-seven 
properties seemed to meet safety standards, 
though further follow-up is needed. “Your Fire 
Department consists of six people that are on duty. 
It will only take one of these buildings to fail, and 
your entire department will be overwhelmed by 
the events,” said Spears, who served as Fire Chief in 
Sierra Madre during the Northridge quake. 

 Unreinforced masonry buildings are buildings 
where load-bearing walls or other structures are 
made of brick, cinderblock, tiles, adobe or other 
masonry material that is not braced by reinforcing 
material such as rebar in a concrete or cinderblock

 These types of buildings can crumble during an 
earthquake causing falling debris, risking the safety 
of pedestrians and traffic below. In Sierra Madre, 
of the 60 buildings inspected, 27 were said to have 
permits and final inspection sign-off, 29 had no 
evidence of inspection and four buildings had been 

 The suggestion by the City Manager is to compile 
a list of structure not in compliance with the proper 
reinforcement and retrofitting and inform and help 
people come in compliance. Area cities have plans 
in place to tackle this issue, one’s which Sierra 
Madre can surely model. 

 The Planning Commission meets the 1st and 
3rd Thursday at 7:00 p.m. in the City Hall Council 
Chamber. The City Council meets the second and 


Mountain View News Saturday, October 27, 2018 

WALKING SIERRA MADRE... The Social Side By Deanne Davis


continued from page 1

“Halloween is a lifestyle...not a holiday!

“Keep calm and carry garlic!”

“When witches go riding and black cats are seen, 
the moon laughs and whispers...

...tis near Halloween.”


All Hallows Eve...Be Afraid...Be Very Afraid!

All Hallows Eve.... is coming,

A deadly.... dreadly night.....

When ghouls and ghosts and creepies,

And other awful blights,

Are free to roam and wander,

Anywhere they might.

Creating scary terror everywhere they can,

And scream inducing, faint-producing, 

hair-raising, bone-melting, 

What’s that right there behind me...

Quivery, shivery...Fright!!


They creep out of their crypts and graves,

These creatures of the night.

They haunt the roads and byways,

Run rampant through the park.

They hide between the bushes,

And everywhere it’s dark.


All Hallows Eve.... is coming,

A deadly.... dreadly night.....

When ghouls and ghosts and creepies,

And other awful blights,

Are free to roam and wander,

Anywhere they might.


Up and down the streets of town,

They race in search of plunder,

These ghouls and ghosts and monsters,

About three feet tall or under! 

They shriek for treats and threaten tricks,

But are satisfied with candy.

These creatures rule the darkness,

As long as Mom and Dad are handy.


All Hallows Eve.... is coming,

A deadly.....dreadly night....

With ghouls and ghosts and monsters,

And other awful sights,

Dancing through the shadows,

Into circles of street lights. 

Beware...take care,

Who knows what’s waiting,

Just around the bend.

Could be Jack the Ripper, come to call again,

Or Dracula or Frankenstein, the undead walk 

Maybe just stay safe inside...and turn off that porch 

And to scare you just a bit more...another taste of 
Emma Gainsworth and her ongoing encounters 
with...dare I say it...Pumpkins!

“Emma Gainsworth woke with a heart-pounding 
start, her pizza-fueled nightmare as gruesomely 
vivid as a CSI crime scene. Willing her heart to stop 
the jack-hammer thing and her breath to slow to a 
more reasonable rate, Emma reviewed the dream 
which had brought her to sweaty wakefulness...
Queen Pumpkinetta running two of her four hands 
through her pumpkin-innards hair seated on the 
Louis Quatorze slipper chair, just to the right of her 
bed. Couldn’t be. Couldn’t possibly be. It’s what I get 
for eating a pepperoni-sausage pizza and drinking 
way too much Miller Lite at midnight. No way, 
there’s just no way. OK, Emma, man up and take 
a look. Slowly rolling her head to the right, Emma 
prepared herself for the worst.” To be continued....

My book page: Deanne Davis


Kindle readers, give yourself the gift of the Emma 
Gainsworth Adventures:

“Just Dessert: A Fall Fantasy” – “The Intergalactic 
Pumpkin Battle” – “The Lost Amulets”

 They’re on on my book page!

Follow me on Twitter, too!

KATIE Tse..........This and That


How has your week been? 
I don’t know about you, 
but nothing particularly 
noteworthy or funny 
happened to me. But don’t 
think I’m complaining! 
I’ll take familiar and 
predictable any day! However, 
familiar and predictable don’t 
make for interesting writing. 
If you read my column often, 
you’ll remember that when 
inspiration fails me, I can 
always rely on my mom’s 
friend, Florence, for ideas.

 Here’s a recap on Florence. 
Not only is she a fabulous 
story teller, but she, herself, 
attracts funny situations. As 
moths are drawn to the light, 
so humorous people and 
weird situations gravitate 
toward Florence. She doesn’t 
even have to try to make 
things happen. If you hang 
around her long enough, 
you, too, will get involved in 
something worth retelling.

 Today’s story includes one 
of the many animals Florence 
and her family rescued near 
their home in rustic Montebello. (Yes, Montebello 
was rustic once.) Although they did not live near 
the ocean, a wayward seagull crash landed on their 
property. (It was probably pulled in by Florence’s 
inherent magnetism.) They nursed it back to health, 
but it was never seaworthy again. So, it became a 
family pet. We’ll call him Dean (think James Dean 
in “Rebel Without a Cause”).

 Among his many personality quirks, Dean had 
the habit of standing at the back end of their long 
driveway, waiting for an oncoming car. As soon as 
one appeared on the horizon, 
Dean took to the air and 
dive bombed right in front 
of the car’s path. He had 
gotten very good at timing 
this, and knew just when to 
pull away at the last moment. 
Nine times out of 10, the 
driver would loudly slam on 
his breaks. Perhaps it was 
the sound of the screeching 
breaks or the smell of burnt 
rubber that Dean enjoyed. 
Whatever it was, Dean got a 
kick out of the whole routine. 
I’d like to think that it was the 
drivers’ good, animal-loving 
nature that kept Dean from 
becoming road kill, but more 
likely it was an automatic 
reaction to a large foreign 
body hurtling toward their 

 I’m sure Florence’s family 
tried to break Dean of this nasty habit, but who’s 
ever heard of a trained seagull? Probably equally 
difficult to explain were the explanation of the long, 
heavy tire marks in front of their driveway. 

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