They don’t always say much to each other, and communication can be tough.

But a trio of seniors who gather for lunch each weekday at a community center in Linda Vista do enjoy each other’s company, as silent as it may be at times. Now, the government-funded lunches — free to those who can’t afford the $3.50 price — is ending after 23 years at the center. Other neighborhoods are losing their food services too.

Our story takes a look at the money issues and brings readers into the lives of these seniors by showing how the daily lunches contribute to their lives.

In other news:

  • San Diego Unified school officials crunched numbers to figure out how much they could save by focusing on priorities like diversity and a balanced curriculum. It’s far from enough, and the school board couldn’t figure out what to do last night to make up for a vast shortfall. But time is tight.

    Meanwhile, parents and teachers showed up in force last night to protest many of the cuts.

  • We’ve got numbers about San Diego’s water usage in January and some perspective on the statistics. The city, by the way, has not issued a single fine for violations of water restrictions.
  • Cities around the state are busy cutting their budgets, and we’ve been following some of their actions because their predicaments seem relevant, at least somewhat, to San Diego’s situation. But are they? We’d like to hear your thoughts.
  • When it comes to violations of San Diego’s curfew law, City Heights was a hot spot in 2009, according to our analysis of police statistics. Check out our map of where many arrests occurred. We’ve got an explanation from the cops too.
  • We’ve got a compilation of comments on our “Out of Reach” series about big gaps in the county’s safety net for the poor. In general, readers are not pleased.
  • In opinion, Vladimir Kogan says that no matter what you think of a new football stadium, downtown redevelopment money shouldn’t be used to build it.
  • Remember the price rally that boosted the local resale home market? Stick a fork in it. It’s over, says real-estate columnist Rich Toscano.
  • The Photo of the Day is squiggly-acious.

Elsewhere:

  • County supervisors “took the first step toward a ballot measure that would severely limit ‘project labor agreements’ that dictate the use of union workers on county construction contracts.” (NCT)
  • CityBeat reports on an investigator who got fired from the county’s Citizens Law Enforcement Review Board and is making allegations regarding the handling of investigations.
  • CityBeat also raps county supervisors for their comments to our reporters in the “Out of Reach” series, saying they were “particularly hostile to the people who need government services.”
  • In a story from Oceanside, the LAT looks at the “growing phenomenon” of traumitized female servicemembers. The story says local Rep. Bob Filner wants a Veterans Bill of Rights for women.
  • Finally, obituaries are mourning a man who helped develop the “Action News” approach to television news mocked so effectively in “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.”

    Back in the 1970s, the Chicago Tribune says, he advised San Diego’s KFMB-TV/Channel 8 to make the news accessible: “The vast majority of our viewers do not read the same books and magazines that you read. In fact, many of them never read anything.”

Stay classy and not well read, San Diego!

— RANDY DOTINGA

Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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