Total Pageviews

Tuesday, May 31, 2016


* Because yesterday was a national holiday,'s Media Monday appears this week only on Tuesday.

Calle Nueve street corner in Barrio Amon, San Jose, Costa Rica 
The Tico Times is an English language daily online newspaper published since 1956 in San Jose, Costa Rica.  This Costa Rican owned and run news source fills an important communications niche for English speakers in this Spanish speaking country of 4.5 million persons. That compares with populations of cities like LA’s 4 million; St. Petersburg, Russia and Alexandria, Egypt. (and 20 million less than Shanghai, China).

To this blog, if Miami or San Diego were a country it would look, feel and drink coffee and beer very much like Costa Rica.

Its regional craft beer and coffee coverage in Costa Rica drew our attention to Tico Times, but the quality of its mainstream coverage and excellent writing keeps us coming back to get a fresher (and frankly more honest view) of world events. 

Links to two Tico Times posts:

Here’s what they say about themselves.
The Tico Times is a daily English-language online newspaper based in San José, Costa Rica. Founded in 1956 by Elisabeth Dyer and a group of Lincoln School students, we offer a unique perspective on the news in Costa Rica, Central America and the world. For half a century The Tico Times established itself as the leading source of English-language news in the region, first as a weekly print newspaper, and later as a Web-only publication.

In January 2014, we launched our new-and-improved website and logo, aimed at delivering today’s up-to-the-minute news in an innovative and stylish format geared toward the 21st century. Check us out on your mobile device and tablet, as well as on our social media sites Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

The Tico Times, owned by Producciones Magnolia, is free to access, and our business is supported by advertising. While we are open to publishing sponsored content and paid advertising, we will never publish paid stories without clearly identifying them as such, including with a different design and presentation from standard news items.

Our aim is to continue The Tico Times’ legacy of quality reporting, investigative journalism, environmental coverage and quality photography, while adding more multimedia content and technological tools. We believe in providing substance with style.

Our staff is small and composed of a diverse balance of Costa Rican and foreign, English-speaking employees. We always have been, and remain, a Costa Rican company.

Contact Us
The Tico Times is located in San José’s historic Barrio Amón, 300 meters north of the kiosk in Parque Morazán, and 25 meters west, on Ave. 11, between calles 5 and 7.

Our phone number is +(506) 2258-1558.

To contact editors, or to send us a news tip, please email:
Jill Replogle, News managing editor

Costa Rica Stats.
--Population. According to the United Nations, in 2009 Costa Rica has an estimated population of 4,579,000 people. Together, whites and mestizos make up a 94% of the population, 3% are black people, 1% Amerindians, 1% Asians, and 1% other.  U.S. population stats show the American colony in Costa Rica ranges between 7,500 to 12,000 persons.

--Costa Rica is relatively small 19,700 square miles (51,100 sq. km), ranking it 129th in worldwide landmass. Costa Rica's size is commonly compared to the state of West Virgina (24,231 sq. mi., 62,758 sq. km) and the European state of Denmark (16,629 sq. mi., 43,069 sq. km).

Non-Tico Times feature:

Boston Globe: Shhh, 12,000 U.S. citizens now call Costa Rica home.  Here’s an article as to why:

Monday, May 30, 2016


Modern day visitor to Gettysburg’s 1863 battlefield shows view from Rebel side looking across field toward the Union lines in the distance.

“As the trees are not dead, though their foliage is gone, so our heroes are not dead, though their forms have fallen. And the spirit of their example is here. It fills the air; it fills our hearts. And long as time shall last, it will hover in these skies and rest on this landscape;
And pilgrims of our own land, and from other lands, will thrill with its inspiration…”

From the prayer by Rev. Thomas Stockton, Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives given at the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 19, 1863.

Gettysburg remembered on Memorial Day 2016

Sunday, May 29, 2016


A historical novel by San Diegan Roger Conlee
The boat lurched to starboard like a bee-stung pony. Jake Weaver lost his footing. Salt spray whipped his face, stung his eyes.
      “What—” he started.
      “Communist patrol boat,” said the skipper, spinning the wheel, shouting to be heard over the roar of the motors. “Gotta try an’ evade. They’re not supposed to fire on us but those bastards sometimes do . . . Yeoman, man your gun!”
      “Aye aye, sir.” A sailor bolted over to the .50-caliber. Jake was impressed that he got to the gun mount so nimbly — this old PT boat was bucking like a rodeo bull.
      Jake hung onto a cable spar for dear life, half standing, half crouching. He seldom got seasick but his gut churned with queasiness. Felt like an Osterizer was chewing up gobs of green gunk in his gut. Be damned embarrassing if he threw up in front of these men.
      On this cold, eerie night on the Formosa Strait, he was bound for Taiwan. He hoped like hell he’d get there. He’d been in China on assignment from the International News Service, reporting on the civil war. Now planes and Navy craft were hauling Americans out of there — government people, missionaries, journalists — because the Reds, damn it, were winning.
      In the distance he saw a searchlight pierce the inky blackness, a shaft of blue-white light beginning to slither over the waves. Had to be the commie boat, maybe a mile away. He wished it was twenty miles. Or a hundred.  
      Just another crazy night in my crazy life, Jake told himself. It brought back to memory the night he’d flown into Nazi Germany in a British bomber, a bomber that had been fired on by a German night fighter. He’d almost shit in his pants.
      The patrol boat seemed to draw closer but maybe that was his imagination — hard to judge distances on this heaving sea. The U.S. being neutral, the Reds had no right to fire on them but it could be a case of shoot first and ask questions later, assuming this was one of Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist boats.
      Now the searchlight swung back and forth over the tossing ocean: Hunting, hunting, hunting. Fear gnawed at Jake as much as the harsh wind. 

On Saturday, June 4 at 2 p.m. Author Conlee will be at a book-launch party for his new historical novel Deep Water at Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore, 5943 Balboa Ave. in Clairemont.  This tale is set in the early days of the Cold War amid the paranoia of McCarthyism with familiar characters from Conlee’s series of wartime historic novels.


Roger L. Conlee is a communications consultant, historian, and former newspaper editor and reporter who lives in San Diego, California. Deep Water is his sixth historical novel. Its two protagonists have figured prominently in some of his previous works—Kenny Nielsen in Every Shape, Every Shadow, a novel of Guadalcanal; and Jake Weaver in Counterclockwise and The Hindenburg Letter, a story largely set in Nazi Germany.