Archive by Date

August 29, 2003
Losangelesgasprices.com keeps track of the lowest prices in the area. The lowest-cost gas that visitors to the site are reporting at this moment is $1.94 a gallon at the Texaco...
It's not clear why, but the LA Weekly has just posted a "web exclusive" about Schwarzenegger's sex life pegged to a demand by ubiquitous feminist lawyer Gloria Allred that Arnold...
KPFK, the Pacifica station in L.A., has been hitting Schwarzenegger this week for serving on the board of U.S. English and the published reports that he gropes female journalists and...
Everything changed for the pranksters of the Los Angeles Cacophony Society (into "Art, Exploration and Subversion of the Secular Norm") after two members died in a car crash returning from...
The Pasadena City College FM station (89.3) has finally decided where the new Los Angeles-produced NPR-Slate show Day to Day fits in. Starting Monday, the show hosted by Alex Chadwick...
The back story of how Arnold Schwarzenegger's Oui magazine interview about smoking hashish and having group sex got into the news is in a short L.A. Times article by Carla...
The LAPD is still having trouble respecting the law and the people it is supposed to serve, it seems. Undercover officers posed as civilians to see what happens when ordinary...
The official No on Recall website -- the one with Sharon Davis' diary -- has picked up the latest Peter King column from the L.A. Times op-ed page without labeling...
August 28, 2003
It's like the famous counter-intuitive (for some people) stat that your chances of being being killed in a car crash are much higher than in a plane -- you stay...
With "media chic" all the fashion rage for fall, the Express stores have designed a line of pants "based on media occupations," says Fox News. Editor, which are low-rise, wrinkle-free...
The bar to get in: 10% in either an L.A. Times or Field poll. Date is Sept 30, a week before the election. Rough and Tumble for a roundup of...
The former Form Zero bookstore has reopened on the Miracle Mile as Art Haus Books. They are in one of those Wilshire Boulevard buildings with a past. It was designed...
After the birth of her second baby, she no longer feels like the woman who would seek out erotic adventures and tell all online, in books and in magazine articles....
August 27, 2003
Rip Rense writes an appreciation of his neighbor Pete, a third-grade teacher who still likes his job but who needs to rant. He leaves his West L.A. home every morning...
Bruce Cain, the Berkeley professor and politics junkie who has been quoted on the recall more than most of the candidates, is leaving for four months of real work at...
Rough and Tumble points to 39 recall items in the media (and a couple of blogs) this morning, and the race is just getting started. More are about money than...
August 26, 2003
Email is rolling in (OK trickling, but coming in nonetheless) making a point I should have noted when announcing the L.A. Times hire yesterday of an automobile critic. An auto...
Denise Hamilton has sold two more Eve Diamond novels to Scribner, "for six figures"... Deborah Martinson has sold a biography, Lillian Hellman: A Life with Foxes and Scoundrels, to Counterpoint...
The centerpiece on the L.A. Times front today is solid work -- a reconstruction of the deadliest battle for American forces in the Iraq war. Plans went awry and 18...
With Arnold taking his campaign to the radio talkers who fomented the recall and see themselves as the voice of real conservatives, sympathetic site NewsMax surveys 19 of California's AM...
The second most common search term bringing visitors to L.A. Observed in August has been "playboy mansion address." No idea why, but as a quasi-public service to whoever you are,...
From John Fund in Opinion Journal, who makes a case that the Times should poll proven registered voters, not random phone answerers. He has some other critiques, but thinks the...
Another Los Angeles-based online culture mag just found me. The Simon began about five years ago as a give-away quarterly and went Web-only last year, Tim Grierson says. He and...
August 25, 2003
Hosting his radio show from of all places the Minnesota State Fair, Hugh Hewitt did a phone interview today with Schwarzenegger. Audio replay here. Hewitt jumped on the A.S. bandwagon...
Dan Neil fills the newly created post of automobile columnist and critic, writing mostly in Sunday Calendar and reporting to features editor Rick Flaste. He has a national reputation as...
When I go into small towns I often wonder how a publisher could ever avoid uncomfortable conflicts with the few advertisers around. Michael Hiltzik's column in the LAT business section...
Crispin Sartwell encourages the defacing of billboards and other public advertising in a piece on the L.A. Times op-ed page: Advertising is the public expression of wealthy people and organizations....
In the "One Question" feature on I Want Media, Matt Drudge is asked about LAT managing Editor Dean Baquet's assertion in the Sunday paper that because of websites such as...
Talk of the City with Kitty Felde on KPCC broadcasts all this week from the road, traveling up the coast on Highway 1. The show will stop in Ventura, Santa...
August 24, 2003
I had one of those moments of perfect clarity this afternoon that reminds me why I don't invest much time listening to AM talk radio. Driving home, I heard the...
August 23, 2003
Updated all weekend. Last: Sunday 11:45 p.m. Dana Gioia, the poet, critic and head of the National Endowment for the Arts, will be the guest on KCRW's "The Politics of...
The media column by R. J. Smith in the September issue of Los Angeles visits with L.A. Times editor John Carroll and takes a read on the fallout from his...
Media mogul Jerry Perenchio, who has made a few appearances on L.A. Observed, has been the largest individual campaign contributor to Gray Davis in recent years, despite being a Republican....
August 22, 2003
Tim Rutten takes on and pretty much destroys the myth of the liberal Hollywood monolith, and along the way quotes the author-blogger Roger L. Simon at some length [see next...
Roger L. Simon is linking on his blog to the good news -- outside of Switzerland, the best place to be a worker with a Big Mac craving is here...
Updated 10 p.m.: Arianna Huffington uses the first installment of her campaign diary on Salon.com to respond to Susan Estrich's "bad mother" column. Leaving aside her completely inaccurate description of...
It appears to go back to Alan Casden's contributions in the 2001 mayor's race, when he backed Antonio Villaraigosa, the L.A. Times says. Casden's Beverly Hills offices were searched Thursday...
Raymond Chandler wrote "there ought to be a monument to the man who invented neon lights." Much of the neon glow that gave Wilshire Boulevard, Hollywood and downtown their classic...
August 21, 2003
The newest TV anchor in Los Angeles -- thought to be in the line of CBS succession to Dan Rather -- is the subject of an unfriendly farewell in the...
This one is by Dennis Romero in LA CityBeat. The first question asks how Weintraub likes all the attention he's gotten with via the recall: It's helping me promote my...
Don't invite Susan Estrich and Arianna Huffington to the same party. Writes Estrich: This is, after all, the woman who runs against oil interests and lives in a mansion financed...
Recently I mentioned the Variety piece on Michael Viner, the somewhat controversial owner of Beverly Hills-based publisher New Millennium. There's a follow-up in the LAT today (picked up here on...
Jane Leavy wrote last year's bestseller on Sandy Koufax and a previous comic novel, Squeeze Play, loosely based on herself, about a sportswriter making her way in the man's world...
Jack Kavanagh at Rough and Tumble has ramped up his posting pace in response to the recall, adding stories often through the day and recently linking to a few blogs...
August 20, 2003
The New York Times Dining section spreads the word on luscious, garlicky Zankou Chicken at the top of a rundown on restaurants found in L.A. strip malls. Like magic, everyone...
The L.A. Times has decided to throw more heft at the recall campaign, tapping the paper's former California columnist and city editor Peter H. King to write two columns a...
The formative Los Angeles radio DJ Magnificent Montague, whose book Burn, Baby! Burn! is coming out, now has a website where you can read the prologue and listen to some...
The Garment and Citizen, which monitors things downtown, has a little feature this week on St. Vincent's Court, the semi-secret alley street behind the former Bullock's store (now a jewelry...
Or in that quirky headline style, "Variety Lifts Tapp, Speier." That would be Tom Tapp, named the editor of V Life, Variety's monthly magazine "dedicated to the people and passions...
If you like your theater observations on Saturday morning, KCRW has your number. James C. Taylor, the station's new theater reviewer, can be heard Saturdays at 7:35 and 9:35 a.m.,...
August 19, 2003
Paul Newman writes in the New York Times that he'll sue the federal department of Housing and Urban Development for misusing the name HUD. Also: Fox Sues Dr. Seuss Over...
If you search on Google for recall candidate Garret Gruener, a sponsored link comes up for the Gruener for Governor campaign: "Cut through the clutter. Restore the California Dream." Gruener...
Channel 2 is bringing in a 20-year veteran of the NBC station in Minneapolis, Paul Magers, to take over some anchor duties from Harold Greene. Magers is the long-reigning ratings...
Two weeks ago in his first column for the Northeast Observer, ex-councilman Nick Pacheco was handicapping Richard Riordan's run for governor on the day Schwarzenegger announced. Ouch. This time he's...
William Rehder spent three decades chasing bank robbers in Los Angeles for the FBI. Now he and Gordon Dillow have co-written a book about it, Where the Money Is: True...
The OC Weekly is back with another long examination of the awful relations between DA Tony Rackauckas and the Orange County press, especially the L.A. Times. Keeping the Times off...
August 18, 2003
Arnold S. plans to unveil his first TV ads on Wednesday and has formed an independent fundraising arm, Arnold Schwarzenegger's Total Recall Committee, that sure makes it look as if...
My post down below on Elizabeth Spiers' quip about Los Angeles on Gawker has hit 37 50 comments and counting, many (unfortunately) of the anonymous and senseless variety. Elizabeth herself...
Matt Welch, who appears to be having more fun than any magazine writer-editor should in his stint at Reason, goes to Lexis and catches Arianna Huffington having it both ways...
Earlier this month Pulitzer-winning TV critic Howard Rosenberg retired, and now the lead TV writer Brian Lowry is jumping to Variety as a columnist and critic. Lowry gave his notice...
The Los Angeles Downtown News kicks off its nicely redesigned website with a hard-edged story by Jason Mandell on the engineer blamed for the fatal Angels Flight mishap. Yanek Kunczynski...
L.A. Times political writer Mark Z. Barabak was one of the gang on CNN's Reliable Sources on Sunday and disclosed that the day Schwarzenegger was mugging for TV cameras in...
Cinescape, the Studio City-based magazine for hardcore cinema aficionados, has a new owner, editor and focus, the L.A. Business Journal's RiShawn Biddle reports this week. The owner is Mania Entertainment,...
The Daily News is out with another of its occasional softball features on Bert Boeckmann, the Valley car dealer and major advertiser who helped the paper secretly bankroll the early...
August 16, 2003
Updates to post added at bottom Sunday on "Deadline L.A" (KPFK), Barbara Osborn talks to Danny Goldberg about the cultural wars...Monday on "Life and Times" on Channel 28, the LAT's...
The headlines: Special Investigation: Hollywood Marred by Nepotism Arnold Vows to Move State Capital to Vancouver C-SPAN Takes Reality TV to Higher Plane Dateline: Hollwood, the newest satirical site to...
Cruz and Arnold are tied in the new Field Poll (yes, Bustamante is ahead 25%-22%, but it's within the 5% margin of error (PDF file)). Turns out that it's pretty...
August 15, 2003
Recall Watch has come back online with its one-of-a-kind monitoring of the cash flow into campaigns -- including $1 million from Peter Ueberroth to himself. Garrett Gruener has also pumped...
Hugh Hewitt provides a handy guide in the Daily Standard for media bookers in need of wisdom on the recall, and the Orange County Republican radio pundit includes some Democats...
The L.A.-based movie reviews and showbiz news website was struck by a mass-mailing virus that flooded subscriber in-boxes with infected attachments last night and today. In an email to subscribers,...
Roger Vincent in the L.A. Times gives a good update on the probable fate of the old, elegant Perino's restaurant site on Wilshire: apartments. In its day Perino's was perhaps...
The Online Journalism Review's Mark Glaser tries to make sense of the L.A. Times putting content from Calendar behind the pay-for-access wall. It was done mainly to create new incentives...
August 14, 2003
Snippet from the media sidebar in the New York Times blackout coverage: Just a few minutes after the close of the [New York Post] first edition, Lorenzo Ciniglio, a freelance...
In writing books about the city's past -- and learning that it pays to Google every topic and name, no matter how dated -- I've stumbled into marvelous online troves...
The LA Weekly's Bill Bradley seems to have the best access to Arnold Schwarzenegger of any California political reporter -- at least of those who talk about it. They chatted...
Conservative pundit Robert Novak writes in today's column that Schwarzenegger changed his mind and ran in the recall because he found his good friend Dick Riordan too "confused and disorganized"...
Writing in today's CityBeat, Catherine Seipp gives the recent best-selling novel by famously ex-LAT writer Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez a read and likes it. She also revisits the much-chronicled flameout of Valdes-Rodriguez'...
From The Smoking Gun: Ever wonder what's become of California's murderous Menendez brothers? Well, to be honest, neither has TSG. But that didn't stop us from obtaining the homicidal duo's...
August 13, 2003
I keep trying not to post about the recall, but it's hard. In tomorrow's LA Weekly, Marc Cooper lets loose his inner Jill Stewart and columnizes that the bleating elites...
Elizabeth Spiers, the editor of Gawker, has been in Los Angeles for a few days and posting her observations back to New York. In the latest she shares a list...
Former L.A. mayor Richard Riordan sits down with James Nash of the Daily News and explains that he was surprised by Schwarzenegger's jump into the recall race, but not bothered...
Michael Viner publishes Bill Maher, Larry King and Gene Simmons -- and books about Heidi Fleiss and the O.J. Simpson case -- but he wants no part of the recall,...
Warner Bros. has demolished the studio backlot's legendary western street, where movies dating back to Errol Flynn's day and TV series such as "Maverick" and "Cheyenne" were filmed. Laramie Street...
David Laventhol most recently had been the chairman and editorial director of Columbia Journalism Review. He came up in journalism as an editor and created the Washington Post Style section....
The L.A. Times' Mark Z. Barabak and Michael Finnegan are out with a story on Arnold bringing in another Pete Wilson vet -- Bob White -- and pushing Gorton to...
August 12, 2003
Law professor Eugene Volokh says the Fox lawsuit against Al Franken over the phrase "fair and balanced" in his book title is much weaker than even Spike Lee's claim to...
Film critic Henry Sheehan (Film Week on KPCC-FM) looks at the Schwarzenegger boomlet from another angle and predicts that, win or lose, by running he has "pretty much put the...
A former New York Post police reporter-turned private investigator is trying to dig up dirt on the LA Weekly's columnist Nikki Finke, who's suing the Post and Disney over her...
Editorial cartoons on the recall -- ten pages of them -- compiled by Daryl Cagle. Thanks to Prestopundit for the link....
Injected this quote into the Wilshire book tonight, and had to share it. “The street traffic congestion problem of Los Angeles is exceeded by that of no other city." The...
Long story by advertising reporter Stuart Elliott in the New York Times Business section today on Lester Terry Tate Speight, the lone joke recall candidate who was literally put up...
August 11, 2003
Because, writes Garrison Frost in The Aesthetic, it's that time again. Worse than tax season, dental appointments, major auto repairs, family arguments and strange insects in my bed, the KCRW...
The Orange County Register has begun to check up on its reporters' accuracy, collecting notes and sending a survey to the sources named in one story each day, says the...
Among media heads, the big winner in the first phase was Dan Weintraub, the Sacramento Bee columnist who began blogging his analysis and opinions in April. He picked up on...
August 10, 2003
A couple of Los Angeles writers have pieces in the September Esquire. Ross Johnson puts actor James Caan to the "What I've Learned" test, and finds him dismissive of actors'...
OK, we have official candidates now -- 158 or so -- and the real race is on. Schwarzenegger starts out on top of course, but only because the electoral bar...
August 9, 2003
Barbara Osborn chats about international coverage of Iraq with journalism professor Mohammed el-Nawawy, author of Al-Jazeera: How the Free Arab News Network Scooped the World and Changed the Middle East,...
August 8, 2003
Tonight at 7 p.m. Life and Times is airing a feature on KJLH, the Stevie Wonder-owned station that Channel 28 calls "the radio voice of south L.A." This is a...
Mickey Kaus' lead item today muses on the possibility of Arianna dropping out of the recall race in favor of Arnold, but the good stuff is he digs up old...
Rick Orlov in the L.A. Daily News quotes an unnamed Richard Riordan aide saying that "the mayor was stunned. He was amazed and angry. He felt like he had been...
Don't feel confident that the recall ballot won't run into Florida-style snafus, election law professor and blogger Rick Hasen warns on the L.A. Times op-ed page....
Rosenberg thought of asking Larry David to write his farewell column after 25 years as the L.A. Times television critic and a Pulitzer Prize. But, as he observes, David "didn't...
August 7, 2003
The California Supreme Court declines to intervene in the recall election. Details to come. Update 4:59 p.m.: Prof. Hasen at the Election Law blog has the order and I'm sure...
That's the headline (minus question mark) at Slate.com, where Timothy Noah's Chatterbox insists that even though Schwarzenegger has pumped money into Holocaust education and is a friend of the Simon...
In her guest host stint for Kittle Felde today on KPCC, Patt Morrison's first call-in guest was Arianna Huffington. But candidate Huffington is losing her weekly spot alongside her good...
Margo Hammond and Ellen Heltzel regularly bat around book topics on the Poynter website -- the place where Romenesko has a home. This week, they examine Los Angeles as a...
On Warren Olney's national show on KCRW, Daniel Weintraub and longtime Republican consultant Arnold Steinberg are saying that if Schwarzenegger truly did not tell his staff or Dick Riordan that...
Roger L. Simon suggests it as a way to breathe some life into too-predictable columns....
Genre, a lifestyle mag for successful gay men, is leaving Hollywood Boulevard for the Empire State Building in Manhattan. There's an all-new editor team in place too. (Advocate.com via I...
Bob Morris, the Valley-based writer of Politics in the Zeroes, resigned from the Green Party council in Los Angeles County and explains why in a long post here. I have...
The most intriguing story of the day is Jim Rainey's inside the L.A. Times, quoting an unnamed confidant of Richard Riordan saying the ex-mayor was outside the loop and stunned...
Dan Weintraub at the Sacramento Bee reports that former baseball commissioner and Los Angeles Olympics chief Peter Ueberroth is now thinking of sliding into the recall race. Ok, that raises...
UCLA professor of public policy (and serious blogger) Mark A. R. Kleiman argues in a piece at Slate.com that a faith-based prison program favored by President Bush and conservatives actually...
After Schwarzenegger left, a giddy Jay Leno -- who connected on at least a dozen good jokes in his monologue -- continued his roll: "That was a big announcement...right up...
August 6, 2003
Deputy managing editor John Montorio is the Adam Moss of the L.A. Times -- the masthead editor in charge of the paper's feature pages, including two new sections in the...
Schwarzenegger tells Jay Leno on tonight's show that he's running for governor. The question now is what kind of game was Schwarzenegger playing when he sent signals through aides for...
Former city councilman Nick Pacheco -- the guy nudged from office by Antonio Villaraigosa -- has a new column starting today in the Northeast Observer. He says that Richard Riordan's...
ABC News correspondent Judy Muller begins in August as an assistant professor of journalism at the USC Annenberg School for Communication. She will remain a contributing correspondent to "Nightline" and...
The satirical free magazine, which launches tonight with a party at the Friar's Club, is written up low in Sridhar Pappu's media column in today's New York Observer. "It’s a...
Ten different L.A. Times staff writers have bylines on recall stories today, including a rare double triple. Can't honestly say I've read them all, but I doubt there's a better...
"Watching Mel Gibson cleverly build interest in his unreleased film on Christ's execution is like watching an unwholesomely willful child playing with matches," begins Tim Rutten's media piece in the...
August 5, 2003
Until Ann Coulter came along and cheapened the whole concept. L.A.-based blogs Hit and Run (Matt Welch) and the Volokh Conspiracy (Eugene Volokh) both smack her for this twisted bit...
The website that aggregates recall news and campaign contribution reports and bravely (stupidly?) has a discussion forum claims it has been "subject to a hacker attack for the last 24-48...
Los Angeles blogger Robert Garcia Tagorda (Priorities and Frivolities) has the only site I know of that mixes politics with regular takes on the Dodgers. He's aware of the dichotomy,...
An Atlanta consulting firm called Civic Strategies that keeps track of how newspapers report on urban life has rated L.A. Times coverage number one. The company's method, basically, is to...
August 4, 2003
That's from the website that has been cheering on the Huffington candidacy, Run Arianna Run. An email from the site says that her concerns about being on the same ballot...
According to the subscribers to RonFineman's On The Record, it is Channel 4's Patrick Healy. He won best field reporter for the third year in a row, edging past Channel...
What happens to Richard Riordan's promised weekly newspaper if he runs for governor in the recall free-for-all? The ex-mayor hasn't said publicly, but Matt Welch -- who helped Riordan put...
George Skelton, the L.A. Times columnist in Sacramento, suggests doing something that would have more effect in the state Capitol than replacing Gray Davis: make lawmakers part time. If the...
The newest SportsLetter ponders whether Seabiscuit is the best-selling sports book of all time, and doubts that David Beckham is the world's most popular athlete (Ronaldo anyone?). There's also an...
The Deal takes a hard look at the pending sale of Freedom Communications, owner of the Register in Orange County and 64 other newspapers, and likes the prospects of the...
New Yorkers watch the New Year come in at Times Square, now some business boosters want Los Angeles to have its own tradition at---the County Mall downtown? That's the strip...
Sitcom writer-producer Bill Prady, the showrunner for "Good Morning, Miami," recently went to Vegas, got lucky at craps and won $3,500. Just enough to pay the recall filing fee, so...
Suzan Lori Parks is scheduled to be on Life and Times Monday, Paula L. Woods on Tuesday....
August 3, 2003
A. Scott Berg's Kate Remembered takes over the best seller spot in his hometown L.A. Times Book Review (he did it last week in the New York Times). Living History...
D. J. Waldie makes the hike up the hill to sample the new cathedral and offers a comparison with the original Church of Our Lady of Angels, down below in...
From the Sunday L.A. Times: A young great white shark captured last week for the Monterey Bay Aquarium has refused to feed and will be released, researchers said Saturday. Before...
If the Los Angeles Times ran wedding announcements, perhaps the paper's reporters (or their parents) would not feel the urge to declare their marriages in the pages of the New...
August 2, 2003
But only a little bit. Today's show is the last one at start at 1 p.m. Next Saturday The Car Show moves to a noon-to-1 slot on Saturdays, writes co-host...
Councilman Parks -- yes, the former chief of police -- isn't impressed by the exploits of his two 50-something council colleagues who volunteer as reserve officers and found themselves in...
Shalhevet is the Jewish middle and high school located in a former hospital at Fairfax and Olympic -- a "modern Orthodox" campus where boys and girls attend class together and...
August 1, 2003
Phil Garlington reported for the Los Angeles Times many years ago, and later for the Register. After getting canned from his last job, he slunk off to a remote desert...
There won't be a big new jail built smack between the Japanese National Museum in Little Tokyo and the Hompa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple. Good. Jails have to be somewhere, but...
John Broder's report in tomorrow's New York Times quotes an unnamed consultant who has worked for both Riordan and Schwarzenegger: "There's a very interesting game of chicken going on." Update...
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