Local Blogs

The Observer

By Roz Rogoff

E-mail Roz Rogoff

About this blog: In January 2002 I started writing my own online "newspaper" titled "The San Ramon Observer." I reported on City Council meetings and other happenings in San Ramon. I tried to be objective in my coverage of meetings and events, and...  (More)

View all posts from Roz Rogoff

Frank Ganz revealed!

Uploaded: Aug 25, 2011
At the Town Hall meeting on Monday, August 22nd, I boasted that I knew who ganzfrank@ymail.com is and would reveal the identity in my Friday blog on the San Ramon Express. Some of that was a shameless plug for my San Ramon Observer blog, but I believed and still do, that I know the source of the "Stop Wal-Mart" flyer, or at least who provided the misinformation that was being spread in the flyer.

Many people in South San Ramon received an anonymous flyer declaring "Wal-Mart is a threat to our neighborhood." The flyer, printed on bright orange paper, warned residents south of Pine Valley Avenue that "Wal-Mart is in negotiations to build a 24-hour store at the Alcosta Mall Shopping Center at 9100 Alcosta Blvd." The flyer included an email address saying, "Please send any information or questions to: ganzfrank@ymail.com."

So the big question is, who is ganzfrank, or as most people assumed, including me, Frank Ganz. Yes I spent many hours searching the internet and Facebook for a person named Frank Ganz who lives in or near San Ramon. I found several Frank Ganzes in California, one as close as San Jose, but I came up with nothing in San Ramon.

I realized that ganzfrank@ymail.com was a red herring. Ymail is a new email address for Yahoo email, and anyone with a Yahoo email address can create a ymail.com email, but why use the name ganzfrank?

One of the Frank Ganzes I found on Facebook is German, and I took German many years ago in college. So I looked up the word "Ganz" in German. It means "total or totally." The word "Frank" has several meanings in English, but the most common is "open or honest." So the person coming up with the name ganzfrank, is labeling herself as "totally honest."

Why do I refer to this person as "her?" because I believe I know who is hiding behind this "totally honest," label, and she isn't "ganz frank" at all. I have no smoking printer, but I found enough evidence in her own words to consider her my chief suspect.

I believe the person behind ganzfrank is a blogger on the San Ramon Patch named Renae Wilbur. Renae posted a lot of messages in reply to the story in the Patch on the flyer. While she insists she had nothing to do with the flyer and hasn't even seen one, she repeats in several message, "I was told specifically by a City Representative in May that a Wal Mart Grocery Store was in the works to go into the site at the old Le Asia Market. . . . This came from someone above the postion (sic) of Marc Fontes. I was told it was not community knowledge yet (i.e. keep it on the down low). I am beginning to think everything our City does is on the down low. This was not a rumor, (sic) this was directly from a City rep." (San Ramon Patch, 8/17/2011)

She refused to name the person she claims told her this because he ". . . would not appreciate his phone ringing off the hook by something that is probably not signed and sealed. . . . .and if I told you the name, you certainly wouldn't need 'the title'." (San Ramon Patch, 8/17/2011)

There are only two City employees above Marc Fontes, Director of Planning, Phil Wong, and City Manager, Greg Rogers. I asked Phil if he told anyone about a possible Wal-Mart, and he said no, he didn't know anything about it. So I asked Greg Rogers.

Rogers said when he was at the City's booth at the Art & Wind Festival last May many people came up to ask what was happening with the vacant store on Alcosta. He said a lot of names were thrown around including Wal-Mart, which now has a "line" of grocery-only stores.

Renae Wilber was a part time City employee at that time. She worked in the City's information booth at the Art and Wind Festival. Greg recalled Renae being in the booth, but he said he didn't speak directly to her about Wal-Mart or say that Wal-Mart was in negotiations for the store.

The flyer generated an avalanche of phones ringing off the hook at City Hall. City Manager Rogers wrote a reply to all of the residents who had emailed or phoned Mayor Wilson and Councilwoman Carol Rowley (their phone numbers and emails were on the flyer) that "The San Ramon City staff has not been in contact with any Wal-Mart representatives concerning the construction of a Wal-Mart store."

At this point Renae admitted in the Patch that she heard about the Wal-Mart while working in the City booth at the Art and Wind Festival with Greg Rogers. "For whatever reason, he has changed his stance on the Walmart and I think San Ramon probably has bigger worries at this time than what might, could, should, shouldn't happen at that site." San Ramon Patch (8/22/2011).

So she still insists, or believes, that Rogers had a "stance on the Walmart." Rogers said he never told anyone that the City was in negotiations with Wal-Mart, because it wasn't, and that Renae probably overheard someone else asking about it.

The City actually has no authority to choose who or what goes into that building. The building is on a long-term lease by the Kroger supermarket chain which owns the Ralphs stores. Kroger's local leasing agent is John Cumbelich & Associates in Walnut Creek. Cumbelich and Kroger will negotiate with any prospective grocery business to sublease the building. This means if Wal-Mart wants to put a grocery store into that space, and the Walmart Company has several grocery business models, as long as the store is within the approved use and the size or footprint of the building isn't changed, the City cannot keep it out.

The City can set limits on signage, height, colors, parking, and other factors on how the store is operated, but unless the applicant wants to enlarge the building or change the kind of store, the City cannot stop it.

So a Neighborhood Walmart Grocery could go into that space, but not a full-sized Wal-Mart, which was the implication in the flyer. Any modifications to the existing use would have to go through several Public Hearings with the Planning Commission and the City Council first.

Rogers believes the worst thing for the City would be for the store to remain empty. The residents in that area shouldn't have to drive two or three miles for groceries. Rogers also wants everyone to know he's never hunted bears, he wouldn't hunt bears, and he likes bears, but he would like to see Alaska.

Renae says she doesn't make assumptions that aren't true, but she assumed that Greg Rogers told her the City was in negotiations with Wal-Mart, which was not true. I try not to make assumptions either. If my assumption here is wrong I apologize to Renae Wilber, but every quote here is taken from her messages posted on the San Ramon Patch.

Even if she did not write or distribute the flyer, she appears to be the source of the original rumor. If she told other people what she believed Greg Rogers told her, one of them is probably ganzfrank or knows who is.

Comments

Posted by Pleasanton, a resident of another community,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 1:28 pm

San Ramon should be paying attention to a city to the south. A Pleasanton neighborhood was also papered with fliers earlier this year, City denied having any application from WalMart or anyone else, and then a month or two later an application to the city appeared. Therefore, I fully expect there to be an application the City shortly. This is WalMart's new concept store, avoiding much of the political fighting that has occured previously. Same thing happened in Hayward as well.


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 1:57 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Thank you for your comment, Pleasanton. I know Pleasanton has had a Wal-Mart superstore for several years.

I believe the new store they are planning there now is a Wal-Mart Express Grocery. According to the Wal-Mart website, this is a small store of 10,000-15,000 sq. ft. The location in South San Ramon is 55,000 sq. ft. Wal-Mart has another larger grocery format in the 40-50,000 sq. ft. size under the name Neighborhood Market.

I'm not personally familiar with Wal-Mart stores. I don't like big-box stores, and I am one of those anti-Wal-Mart people, but if this is strictly a grocery store that would fit into the same building without major changes, I don't see any reason not to have it there.

I'm concerned that distributing an incendiary flyer under an assumed name before any facts are known, is not helpful to the neighborhood or the City.

Roz


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Here's a link to the Pleasanton Weekly on the Walmart store planned for Pleasanton. Web Link

There was also a story in January of 2010 that Walmart would be moving into Dublin. Web Link

Roz


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 9:40 pm

Hi Roz,

You actually have given me a chuckle tonight. A great investigator you are but a Nancy Drew you are not. And please do tell me where I used the term "negotiations" because I don't recall ever saying that word. There are no assumptions on my part, I know exactly what Greg Rogers told me, privately, and specifically. The only person I repeated his words to until the Patch news story came out was my partner, because I was excited to know a grocery store was going in and I had never heard of a Walmart Grocery. I see you left that part out of your story.

Unlike you, I am not anti-Walmart, I think a balance of privately owned businesses and corporate owned businesses can be beneficial to a City. Just for the record, I bought a flast screen television at Walmart just last year. They had the best price! I am disappointed Roz, you are not living up to my Ph.D. expectations. Lastly, I spend most of my time writing a blog, Web Link - you will learn everything you want to know about me on my blog. I urge anyone to read it that wants to know what I stand for.

I am very open and honest (You are the 68 year old San Ramon resident that's been Googling me are you not?) No need to do that, just ask! I'm an open book. And politics aren't my passion, but I don't like lies or statements that don't measure up with what I've been told. Oh, and usually, the most obvious suspect in a mystery is not typically the "one". You lose.


Posted by Wallywalmart, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 10:19 pm



Roz, I believe you owe Ms. Wilbur a huge apology. How can you justify such a charge based on such speculative and frivolous points?

Any dignified person who would banter about such conclusions, then resort to finger pointing should be ashamed, but really...what are the chances of that?

Flyers also appeared prior to the opening of the Walmart in Pleasanton and 9 other markets in California. Are you saying she had something to do with all those as well?

As I read Ms. Wilber, she is pointedly vanilla, neither in support nor opposition to Walmart in the first place. Like me, Ms. Wilber just found it odd that officials were all the sudden hearing no evil, seeing no evil and speaking no evil, about the possibility, when she and so many others had already personally heard speculation about Walmart taking a look.

Now I ask you...would it not seem logical that anyone who would go to the trouble and expense to print and distribute a flyer in fervent support or opposition, might actually have decided first one way or another how they feel about such a development?

Further, since she proudly uses her own name in public, why would she resort to a pen name for something like that? None of this makes any sense and your lack of consideration of these points doesn't paint you in the most professional light.

How embarrassing Roz, that you neglect to deduce the obvious, in favor of such a thoughtless smear of an obviously unrelated person.

For the record: Of COURSE Walmart has probably considered this site. For further shock and awe, Walmart has also considered thousands of others just like it. They would not be Walmart if they didn't have expert capability to conduct feasibility studies for potential locations.

For the record...SO WHAT?

Of COURSE city officials have been queried by Walmart and many other retailers. Often this is done by straw corps. so as to avoid just this kind of silliness your banter has caused. There is hardly a select piece of frontage in any metropolitan area of the country that is not carefully scrutinized by Walmart, Kroger, and many other retailers. In this business it is Location, Location, Location and if you think otherwise, your store will fail.

Who really cares if Ms. Wilber heard what should be obvious to everyone? We see no news in that. As she has no axe to grind, nor even an opinion on the choice of ultimate retailer it would seem your witch hunt is more of a magnifying glass on your own motives than those of Ms. Wilber.

Coming soon to a neighborhood near you. Walmart Grocery, Walmart Gas, Walmart Books, Walmart Optical, Walmart Medical, Walmart Diner, Walmart Restaurant, Walmart Hotel, Walmart everything.

In this economy, you better be glad ANYONE comes in at all.

Let's hope the next time you leverage your ink to this level of speculation, you put common sense in the mix.





Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Renae,

Thanks for being a good sport. When I started this quest I was sure you were the culprit. Now I'm not so sure, but I still believe ganz frank isn't a person's name but a play on words.

I didn't say you used the term "negotiations." That term is used in the flyer. Greg Rogers said he didn't use the term "negotiations," but you used the phrase "in the works," which could be interpreted as "negotiations."

Yes, I'm the 68 year old (ouch, am I really that old!) woman who's been doing searches on you, and half-a-dozen other names, mainly Frank Ganz and names connected with him. I see you have been doing some searching on me too.

I have read your blog. Yesterday I drove around the neighborhood looking for the 15 oak trees in the photo but didn't see them.

Roz


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 10:33 pm

Here is a helpful link...the possibility that Whole Paycheck, I mean Whole Foods, started the rumor. Imagine that, another grocery store being threatened by a Walmart Grocery. Now there's a suspect! What a concept. Web Link


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 10:38 pm

p.s. As Greg Rogers was working at the back table with me, didn't have a name badge, and few people new who he was, he answered very few questions for others in my presence. The only repeated question that few people asked was "Are we ever going to get a downtown?" -- not once did I hear anyone discuss the space at the LeAsia market with him...except for myself....and most questions were directed to Carole Rowley because those that cared, knew who she was. She has been involved in our City for 30+ years. The majority of the people at the Art & Wind Festival were there to enjoy the day, not discuss politics. I know what I heard.


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 10:50 pm

Dear Wally Walmart,

You must have a heart after all, you have come to my defense as I have been falsely accused. I've changed my stance. I don't believe that Whole Foods is the suspect after all, I THINK IT'S YOU! I'm sorry, I am ashamed, I have absolutely no proof -- but how EXACTLY do you know all of this information unless you yourself have studied and researched Walmart and its search strategies? Aha! Perhaps you work for Whole Foods. I believe we have a new suspect before us. Roz? What do you think?

p.s. Roz....ahem.....waiting for the apology. As soon as I get it, I'll personally take you to see the Redwood Trees in the photo. Now, did you just call them Oaks because, I feel a rumor startin'...

Renae :)


Posted by Alan Stott, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 11:23 pm

I can guarantee you that Frank Ganz is NOT Renae Wilber. I have known Renae for almost 47 years and can tell you from personal experience that she would never shy away from using her true name. If Renae had anything at all to do with the flyer, she would be the first one to stand up and state so. I find it quite interesting that her name would be published in such a manner based on someone's apparent "intuition." As far as what she was told by Greg Rogers, I assure you she was not mistaken in any way. As her older brother, she has never once forgotten or misconstrued anything I ever said to her. Not once.
There is always the possibility that Mr. Rogers stated something he shouldn't have and is now backtracking as far as possible. Of course we all know that a true politician would never do this. Would he? You seem to be making a mountain out of a molehill when there are many more important issues to deal with within San Ramon. I personally think that you city would be better served by your paper if you left the intuitive guesses to the National Enquirer where they belong. Renae Wilber is neither pro or anti Wal Mart. She is one of the most honest people you could ever meet. Maybe she took Mr. Rogers at his word when he stated this to her. This I would believe, as she seems to have no idea that politicians routinely speak out of both sides of their mouths, depending on who is listening, and what they will gain by doing so.


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 25, 2011 at 11:52 pm

Thank you Alan. I do believe the San Ramon Express should be renamed the "San Ramon Enquirer" because I don't take this paper too seriously, and I suppose because of that I am laughing and entertained; not so offended. And yes, brother, you are spot on about my not forgetting or misconstruing anything....(how many times did I get you in trouble for your words when we were kids?)Unfortunately, I may not remember what I ate for breakfast yesterday, but I always remember what I'm told. You are also right about my honesty, and unfortunately, I was always "the gullible one." It really never occurred to me that someone I worked with, went out of my way to connect him on the greatest Alaskan adventure of he and his son's life, that I thought would be a great City Manager....would speak out of both sides of his mouth. Especially when it would have been so easy to say, "Well of course we considered it, we consider every option." I mean, aren't they supposed to consider every option anyway? If they haven't even considered a Walmart in San Ramon, then maybe they're spending too much time thinking about fishing in Alaska. My hunch is we will see a Walmart Grocery in the near future. I have yet to hear them nix the word "grocery." Sigh....I did always enjoy the Enquirer -- not for the real news, just the entertainment. Love you brother.


Posted by alan stott, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 12:07 am

Maybe this City Manager should have a 2nd look taken at his track record. What kind of City Manager would not even have considered a WalMart? One does not have to be pro or anti WalMart to check out the possibility and then consider what is best for his constituents and community. Sounds to me like he is just being a typical, self serving politician. How very sad for the City of San Ramon.On the other hand, perhaps he's speculating on real estate and is just covering his derriere. Another fine trait of most politicians.


Posted by William Stott, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 12:54 am

Renae, by Renae's father

I have been telling for a long while to run for office ad scare a few politicians.

They can always use an honest voice that won't quit. Careful though, look what happened to Palin.


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 11:45 am

Thank you dad, I take that as a compliment, although I don't know that honesty is always welcome in the world of politics. Regardless, if I ever became seriously involved, I would have to ask Sarah to move over...there isn't room for two of us.


Posted by alan stott, a resident of another community,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Let me make a correction here. I do not live in San Ramon. I am a lifetime resident of Anchorage, Alaska. I thought maybe I should clear this up quickly, before the illustrious Roz starts googling me and trying to drive to my neighborhood based on some blog photos.


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 1:08 pm

I believe I had it right all along...I believe the City Government has been duped -- I bet these people love the fact that you have me pegged as the chief suspect in the mystery. But I think I have it figured out...

"For the typical anti-Wal-Mart assignment, a Saint manager will drop into town using an assumed name to create or take control of local opposition, according to former Saint employees. They flood local politicians with calls, using multiple phones to make it appear that the calls are coming from different people, the former employees say."

It all adds up. Waiting for that apology Roz.

Web Link


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 1:44 pm

Dear San Ramon Residents,

We are all an intellectual bunch, which I've observed in my 20 years of living here; and yet....someone like Roz Rogoff who claims to have a Ph.D. has managed to put into the minds of our community, to suggest to others (oh the power of suggestion) that I am the witch the City Council/Mayor/City Attorney/Planner, etc. etc. are in search for. The person who has become the subject of great controversy, if only a controversy for the mere fact that our City government does not like to be questioned or challenged. My friends, my neighbors, my coworkers, my peers....we are not a community made up of people who stand for a "Lord of the Flies" mentality. We are hard working, family loving, friendly, spirited, volunteer minded, take care of our neighbors people. A mob mentality is what we are NOT and we should never be. Some of my favorite City Council members do not share my politics, and yet, I have cared for their children (little Meredith Perkins who was entrusted in my care for one week while her parents, Elizabeth and Scott Perkins left to the East Coast to visit their son). Mayor Wilson has honored me with an award for my volunteer work in the community. And yet -- we, such an inquisitive, intellectual, critically thinking, independent minded bunch have jumped onto the Salem Witch Trial bandwagon, spearheaded by Roz Rogoff....and many of you fell for it! Today I am sad. I am ashamed of you who pointed the finger at me. Who smeared my name in the press as the "chief suspect" and of those of you who bought into it, because I had a few opinions and facts to share. Roz Rogoff wrote a fine column, she very articulately wrote suggestively and used enough of my words to provoke the minds of truly intellegent people that I had committed the crime; although their was no crime all along. She used the persuasive speech tactics that she learned in high school and mastered while obtaining her Ph.D. I'm sure. But she was cruel in her words. She left out the words I've spoken that would have without doubt invalidated her story. Additionally, she walked the fine line of slander. Beyond that, she used an innocent party to build herself up, to bring shameless publicity to her own writing, and to convince you that there is a witch to burn in San Ramon. Lest you forget the power of a mob mentality, the power of suggestion, and the story of The Lord of the Flies....the attached link will take you to the victims who were hung after the Salem Witch Trials. I believe I deserve a public apology from Roz Rogoff, but beyond that, I am left so sad by the community I believed in. Renae Wilber
Web Link


Posted by mloliver, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 7:06 pm

mloliver is a registered user.

Renee:

For awhile this was entertaining reading. I'm sorry that people who could be friends are moving into the realm of adversaries. You and I haven't met that I'm aware of, or I have forgotten (that happens a lot lately) but I respect your opinion, your comments, and I also respect Roz. She has done a lot over the years to bring issues in San Ramon to the citizenry, and has always separated her opinion from her reporting. OK, She screwed up here, but we all make mistakes. I suspect if there are to be witch burnings, there are many who would put me in line before you. That being said, there is nothing that I care about more than the future of San Ramon. Anything that threatens that future makes me very sad, but I still believe in the community spirit.

MLO


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Renae,

You are quite an expressive writer. You have managed to turn my reasonable (I thought) analysis of your messages on the Patch into a witch hunt and even have the usually rational Mary Lou Oliver believing I screwed up.

I already apologized in my blog, where I said "If my assumption here is wrong I apologize to Renae Wilber, but every quote here is taken from her messages posted on the San Ramon Patch."

That doesn't mean I took all of your words from the Patch, but those that led me to believe you are the root of the information in the flyer. You wrote some very nice things about the City and the neighborhood and I passed on your comments about the man with the black lab to him (he is my neighbor) and it made his day.

As for your responses to my commentary here, I am reminded of another classic of literature, Hamlet Act 3, scene 2, 222–230, "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." If it comes down to your word against Greg Rogers, I believe Greg and I won't apologize for that.

However, I did accuse Redwoods of being Oak trees, so I apologize to them.

Roz


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Unfortunately, I believed Greg too, and this is how this all began. Be careful who you follow.

Renae


Posted by John Madison, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 26, 2011 at 11:37 pm

Enough of this....can we get back to giving our city employees raises, pension contributions and making plans to level all scenic hillsides? Gee whiz...we got the hillsides West of Home Depot taken care are of, now we've got to get busy on those green hillsides west of Golden Skate...they are an eyesore!! Can't Mr. Fong find a solution? All this green is making my eyes sore. And that blight West of the Glass House...I am sure we can get another 40 or 50 townhouses in there with the right planning.


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 12:22 am

@MLO - Thank you for commenting. I too believe in community spirit and am just greatly saddened.

@Roz - You took my name and bashed me all over the press...you searched me out on the Internet, you sought out my home, and everything about me. You then "revealed" that I'm Frank Ganz....and I CREATED the witch hunt? No my dear, you created it, and you were called to the table, and now it is your name in question. I'm sorry if you don't like how it feels. Not good huh? I didn't think so. But you were on a witch hunt and you bashed me in my community and put a question in the minds of everyone as to my integrity. I don't care how qualified you think you are to make an opinion on another person, I have absolutely no respect for you or your tactics. They are textbook and classless.

@John, you are absolutely right. I am genetically inclined to beat the dead horse until I get my point across or feel adequately understood. Do you know why the horse died? Because it had no green pastures in which to roam. hee hee


Posted by H. Sachs, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 10:42 am

Renae - You say you don't like lies that don't measure up to what you have been told. What if someone told you something they claimed as truth but knew it to be false? I'm not talking about Walmart here; something much more important: credibility and truth and San Ramon, our city, your city, my city. How would you feel if you were misled ? LMK


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 1:23 pm

The whole community has been misled. I called b.s. on a statement made in a news story in the Patch. That was my apparent crime.

Roz had a hunch I was the culprit and in turn she published her opinion, which she has every right to. What she didn't realize I'm sure, were the repercussions to me and my family. That my daughter's phone would be blown up by her friends and their parents because of something I was absolutely no part of. I have a feeling Roz didn't realize the consequences of her statements, or I think she probably would have reevaluated her post. I don't believe her intentions were to harm me...but they did. All posts, Roz's and mine, have been divisive. In the end I have to accept that Roz doesn't believe me and why should she -- she doesn't know me and probably knows the Rogers family. That's her judgment call. But in the very end...we allowed, what I think is the doing of another grocery corporation, to cause suspicion, and as the link I've attached will show, nobody wins, we are just left divided and feeling bad. Well that's how I feel anyway. Whoever started these flyers, wanted to cause an uproar within the community, and we have allowed them to succeed, and we all lose. Web Link p.s. Take Broadmoor and turn West on Springdale. The Redwoods are about a block down on the South side of the street. You have to park your car, sit under them, and look up. That's when you will really realize how beautiful they are. ~Renae~


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 1:52 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Renae,

If my speculations caused a backlash against your family I am sorry. It was never my intention to cause you harm, but I believed your claim you heard about the Walmart from a City Representative initiated this rumor, whether intentionally or not.

My intention was to explain that whoever sent that flyer doesn't understand how businesses are located in San Ramon. While the City's Director of Economic Development might encourage a business, like Trader Joe's, to move here, the decision is up to the business and not the City.

Likewise if Walmart is interested in leasing the vacant grocery building, it's up to their representatives and the leasing agent to negotiate any contract. The City isn't trying to put a big Walmart store there, which was the implication in the flyer.

My purpose in naming you was because of your claim about hearing about this from a high-level City representative, and I wanted to show (at least from their side of the story) that it could not have happened that way.

Roz


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Thank you Roz, I appreciate your words. I will tell you why my knowledge did not initiate the rumor although I understand how you thought it did. I came home that day excited, and told my partner, who lives in El Cerrito, seldom comes to San Ramon, and shops with me no matter what store I go to. Even Walmart. He doesn't have any friends in San Ramon and is an introvert (we are opposites). He would have told no one and probably wasn't even listening when I told him because quite frankly, and obviously, I talk too much. I then told my 21 year old daughter who was visiting me that day...she shrugged her shoulders and said "Oh that's cool" and onto the next subject. After that day, I never brought it up to anyone, at all. I forgot all about it in fact until....last week when the newspaper article came out. Then I went....wait a minute!! That's not true!! That's NOT what I was told! I called b.s.

I, personally, have NO understanding of how businesses are laid out in San Ramon. I'm not saavy as far as City government except that I absolutely hated the politics when I worked part-time for a few months for Parks and Rec. Some of the people that worked there were absolutely wonderful, some were downright ugly and mean. I quit because I didn't like the environment. Ask Colleen, she's known me forever. She helped me raise one of my daughters. She knows who I am and that I would not lie. But I chose to leave...never once with any thought of malice on my part towards the City...it was what it was and I wasn't a fit.

My only axe to grind is that I was told one thing and three months later the community was told another.

So no, the rumor did absolutely not start with me. I'm sorry if anyone thinks it did. But Greg did tell me one thing - that spot was perfect for a Walmart "Grocery"...not a superstore. A day later, I didn't give it another thought. I went home and researched Walmart "Grocery" because I was excited. The next day I was onto pulling weeds, worrying about my daughters woes, painting my house, and not ever thinking about it again. I think I've repeated myself about ten times now...beatin' that dead horse again.

Maybe we can move on from here...I have two Beagles that need my attention, weeds to pull, bills to pay, a dirty house, and I really really really want to take a nap. I am so sick of all this that even if they put a Walmart there, the taste is too bad in my mouth to shop there now. Besides, I didn't shop at LeAsia because they had mice. And mice scare the bajeeebeezz out of me. Let's move on. p.s. Did you like the video?? ~Renae~


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

I just watched the video. Snoopy victorious!

Roz


Posted by Renae Wilber, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 27, 2011 at 7:03 pm

Glad you liked it. :)


Posted by dave, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 29, 2011 at 11:29 am

The space at LeAsia is 70,000+ sq. ft. If any grocery store is interested please call the leasing agent not the city. If 72,000 sq. feet is not ideal, call the leasing agent to see what they can do. Too bad you can't call the redevelopment agency anymore....or can you? I suspect many stores have done their d.d. and passed on this site or are comtemplating when the economy will pick up.


Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Aug 29, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.

Dave,

Marc Fontes told me the store was 55,000 sq. ft. The leasing agent, John Cumbelich & Associates, lists it at 58-62,000 sq. ft. You say it is 70,000 sq. ft. We should at least get the numbers right.

Roz


Posted by Foz Faroff, a resident of San Ramon,
on Aug 29, 2011 at 3:46 pm


Hello, I'm Foz Faroff and welcome to today's episode of:

"CAST THE BLAME"

This is the internet game show where we blindly blame the innocent, smarm them out to the public and then hold them accountable for the result!

Let's introduce today's contestants shall we?

She's a bloggin' beauty from Sunny San Ramon, a fiercely forthright and doggedly determined Mom of 2, Let's welcome the lovely Renae Wilber.

"I DONT CARE ABOUT THE FRIGGING STORE! NEVER DID! WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE?"

Thanks Renae~ but facts have no place in "CAST THE BLAME"

This week, Renae has been blamed for inciting a riot, uprooting a forest, creating political instability and an unexpected 3% increase in the value of Walmart Stock...All while merely mentioning what was obvious to everyone else!

"I HAVE A GARDEN...I DONT EVEN NEED TO SHOP...WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE? I JUST WANTED TO RIDE MY BIKE TO GET SOME MILK"

Thanks Renae but once again...facts need not be mentioned, we try to keep reality completely out of CAST THE BLAME!

Now today's challenger is rough and ready, bold and bodacious, a Mister of mysteriousness Mr. Frank Ganz.

"I DID IT...I DID EVERYTHING...I ADMIT IT"

Whoa, wait just a minute there Frank...there is NO Confessing allowed on CAST THE BLAME~

"But..I DID DO IT...I mean...nobody else...It was only me"

Stop right there Frank, you are perilously close to telling the truth and that is not allowed by Foz Faroff! You may be instantly disqualified if we even THINK you might be telling the truth...but don't worry too much...we aren't too hot on being able to identify the obvious, particularly if it seems logical.

Innocent members of the community who wish to play CAST THE BLAME, can avoid all applications by simply commenting on what you heard from a City official! Foz Faroff and her crack exploration team will weasel their way in and snatch absurdity from the jaws of obviousness!

You may be the next contestant...like it or not.

Like we say here at CAST THE BLAME! "The truth..it's just SO Limiting"


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: *

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Understanding Early Decision in College Admissions
By Elizabeth LaScala | 1 comment | 2,277 views

New heights for NIMBYs
By Tim Hunt | 31 comments | 1,480 views

Weekly, TV30 to host Pleasanton mayoral, city council candidates' forum
By Gina Channell-Allen | 2 comments | 1,004 views

Earthquake Insurance
By Roz Rogoff | 4 comments | 810 views