The Seedlings Of A Plan

SPRING IS busting out all over. So is my wasteline, but that’s a story for another day. I’d rather concentrate on the beauty that surrounds us when wildflowers emerge from their winter slumber and tulips spring from the ground with their soft pastel petals. It’s a time for rebirth and it brings to mind the work being done at the northernmost entrance to Montclair.

Once just a spot on the Sacramento rail line, the corner of Thornhill and Moraga has gone to seed in recent years — sporting nothing but weeds and an ugly metal fence. But hills resident Jill Broadhurst adopted the lot, lovingly developing a plan for it to shine. With the help of landscape artists Feyerbend and Madden, she’s rounding up volunteers to turn this high profile corner into a little “pocket park.” If you’d like to donate time or money, please contact Jill through the Montclair Safety and Improvement Council at This is the perfect example of how we really can make a difference in our little village.

SPRING CLEANING: A reader reminded me recently that Mother Mary Ann Wright is still taking in clothing for Oakland’s poor. She’s the saintly woman who, at 84, has been feeding and clothing the disadvantaged since 1980, when she had a middle-of- the-night epiphany. Her foundation is located on 26th Street and you can reach her by calling 510-601-8119.

E-MAIL BAG: Reader Trish Hare tells me her neighbor, June Ko-Dial, has been nominated as a district 4 local hero. “She’s a very strong advocate for elementary ed and one of the most down-to-earth people,” Hare says. Despite personal challenges with her health, Ko-Dial is being honored as someone who puts so much energy into the community — she’s an inspiration to others.

You can see a full list of nominees on Councilwoman Jean Quan’s Web site at

PUFFED UP: More no-smoking signs are going up around a Glenview coffee shop in the wake of complaints about the “air pollution” outside. Neighbors tell me early morning smokers were ignoring city laws and lighting up within 25 feet of the doors and windows of Ultimate Grounds on Park Boulevard.

Several merchants smoke outside their shops here and one disgruntled person told me he’d be smoking in the street if he complied with the 25-foot minimum.

“If the smoke doesn’t get me, the traffic will,” he laughed.

CUDDLE UP: It’s Valentine’s weekend, but not everyone sees this as the ultimate lover’s holiday. At Glenview Lock and Key there’s a spoof in the window pairing dozens of unlikely couples like Gumby and Godzilla and Sen. Dianne Feinstein and former Iraq leader Saddam Hussein. But the real message is no joke. If you want to love someone on Valentine’s Day — start with yourself.


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