LA Observed archive
for March 2004

If you don't find what you want here, check another month or search below.

Bore America

| 8 Comments
Lonewacko is looking for co-bloggers for a new project: "We occasionally listen to Air America so you don't ever have to."...

Breakfast at Tiffany's gets ink

| 10 Comments
Rosanna Mah at the L.A. Independent discovers (and clearly adores) Tiffany Stone. The headline calls her "Princess Tiffany: Bridget Jones of the Blogs" and a great photo of the blogger...

Rivenburg & Signorile

| 1 Comment
Wednesday was a travel day so I was late to notice that Michelangelo Signorile at the New York Press has read a lot into LAT staffer Roy Rivenburg based on...

Gonna be a long season

| 8 Comments
The baseball season just began today and the Dodgers can't even lose their first game until Monday. But Sports by Brooks reports that Long Beach Press-Telegram columnist Doug Krikorian already...

Rush's friend for a week

Democrat George Smith tells the tale in the Village Voice of how he came to be, for a one-week media cycle, what he calls "an unwitting hit man for the...

Wonkette revealed

| 1 TrackBack
Mediabistro hangs out at last weekend's overdue launch party for Wonkette.com in Washington (graced by bi-coasting Venetian Mickey Kaus) and sits down to find out all about the woman behind...

John Sack, Esquire writer was 74

| 1 Comment
Sack had also been a producer for Channel 2 here, a screenwriter, an actor and a writer for the TV show "That's Incredible." But he is best known as a...

The Litigator

| 3 Comments
Today's front page story on Gov. Schwarzenegger and his bulldog lawyer Martin Singer getting tough with improper uses of Arnold's likeness is the first L.A. Times byline for Robert Salladay,...

Kudo for 'Dose of Denial'

| 2 Comments
The American Reporter's San Pedro-based media correspondent, Robert Gelfand, praises recent L.A. Times stories on Ford's defense tactics in liability cases (by Myron Levin) and on drug companies striving to...

Show her the money

| 8 Comments
Mariane Pearl, the wife of slain WSJ reporter Daniel Pearl, wants a payment from the 9-11 victims fund for herself and the Pearls' son Adam. The New York Times story...

Tay's not on his list

| 2 Comments
Subscribers to Ron Fineman's On the Record are voting on the best TV news anchor team in Los Angeles. The field has narrowed to two finalists: Channel 7's Marc Brown...

LAO the mug?

| 4 Comments
The Juxtaposition actually expends bandwidth, intellectual and digital, suggesting that I offer an official L.A. Observed coffee mug. Hmm, maybe someday. [Just do it. Accepting that ad for the immortals...

Pumping Kerry

George Butler, the filmmaker who gave Arnold Schwarzenegger's career a jump start with Pumping Iron, has lately been hanging out with his old pal John Kerry. He threatened to sue...

Disney wins Pooh case

| 13 Comments
After 13 years of litigation, an L.A. judge threw out a lawsuit seeking royalties on Winnie the Pooh after ruling that the plaintiffs' investigator broke into Disney offices and stole...

Close but...

Local author Steve Oney's And The Dead Shall Rise: The Murder of Mary Phagan & the Lynching of Leo Frank didn't quite win the $10,000 J. Anthony Lukas Prize Project...

Blog stuff

| 6 Comments | 1 TrackBack
Comments and new postings were blocked for most of today (Monday) by my web hosting service, Lunarpages. They are back on now. Lunarpages is unhappy with Movable Type, the software...

How un-American of us

| 20 Comments
U.S. forces padlocked the doors and shut down a Baghdad newspaper sponsored by a popular anti-American Shiite cleric, accusing it of printing lies that incited violence against coalition forces in...

'Morning Edition' host may be in L.A.

One of the changes under consideration by NPR to replace Bob Edwards, the longtime host of the cornerstone news show "Morning Edition" who was dumped last week, is to put...

Picture Daryl Gates...

| 1 Comment
Here's another way that Bill Bratton is unlike any previous Los Angeles police chief. Last week, writes Rick Orlov in the Daily News, Bratton and his wife Rikki Klieman hosted...

McOsker's role on rise?

Mayor Hahn's chief of staff Tim McOsker played a part in last week's resignations by three deputy mayors and is seeing his authority grow, the Business Journal reports in a...

More on WSJ bureau

Unlike me, the Business Journal follows up my Feb. 19 report on Wall Street Journal L.A. bureau chief Jonathan Friedland leaving town with some actual reporting. He's going to the...

Media critics weekend

| 1 Comment
In Saturday's L.A. Times, Tim Rutten summarizes ex-NYT Editor Howell Raines' 21,000-word disgorgement in The Atlantic as "a devastating appraisal of his former newspaper and its prospects." He sheds some...

Local bloggers unite(d)

| 1 Comment
Jonah at LABlogs.com arranged an open gathering of Los Angeles bloggers last night at Farmers Market and reports on the good-sized turnout here. He links to others' postings about the...

WSJ's Robichaux goes to trades

Mark Robichaux takes over as executive editor of news for Broadcast & Cable, Variety reports today. He had spent 13 years at the Wall Street Journal "covering entrepreneurs, television and...

Perino's fans get another chance *

| 3 Comments
Last night's crowded (and reportedly under-catered) LA.com party was not the final event to be held in the once-grand, but long-abandoned Perino's after all. Collage Dance Theatre, the troupe that...

Boomer's lament

| 8 Comments | 1 TrackBack
Former network news anchor and reporter Linda Ellerbee writes on the LAT op-ed page that NPR's removal of Bob Edwards after 25 years is more misguided broadcaster bias against aging....

Bestsellers united

That happy and by now very rich (we hope) writing couple, Faye and Jonathan Kellerman, have finally done a book together. Double Homicide, out in the fall, will be a...

Training journos for Christ *

| 93 Comments | 3 TrackBacks
L.A. Times feature writer Roy Rivenburg's involvement with the World Journalism Institute, whose mission is "training a cadre of Christian journalists to enter the mainstream newsrooms," has become a conversation...

L.A.'s newspaper war

The L.A. chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is bringing together the top editors of La Opinión and Hoy next week for a panel on their battle for Spanish-language...

The winner is... Seabiscuit

Oops, I missed this earlier in the week. Mayor Hahn has chosen Lauren Hillenbrand's Seabiscuit as this year's One Book, One City selection. Hahn's previous book choices were Fahrenheit 451...

Books of Los Angeles

| 1 Comment
The April issue of Los Angeles with Shaq on the cover (not yet online) has an on-balance unfavorable review by Tom Carson of Peter Biskind's Down and Dirty Pictures: Miramax,...

No more news at KKJZ

LARadio.com reports today that KKJZ, the Long Beach jazz station at 88.1 FM, has dumped its entire five-person news staff. The station will instead air music-related "news notes" and pick...

Troy Edwards resigns **

| 1 Comment
Deputy mayor Troy Edwards had been Jim Hahn's connection to the airports and harbor commissions, where questions have been raised about a link between campaign donations and the awarding of...

Pondering Bernie Parks

| 2 Comments
Deposed police chief, now councilman, Bernard Parks and his probable run for mayor are examined in a nicely done profile by Robert Greene in the LA Weekly. He’s not just...

At lunch with Orlov

| 13 Comments
Rick Orlov of the Daily News is called the dean of L.A. City Hall reporters in Cathy Seipp's "Media Circus" column in today's CityBeat -- on the job since 1988....

WGA sets new vote

| 1 Comment
In a settlement with the U.S. Department of Labor, the Writers Guild has set an election for president a year early on September 20. The feds will oversee the balloting...

Smoke-free Santa Monica beach

| 20 Comments | 1 TrackBack
The Santa Monica City Council voted 4-2 Tuesday night to ban smoking on the beach, at bus stops and within the pier's open-air amusement park. The law must pass a...

Sports guy out, DJ in

| 2 Comments
Michael Schneider reports in Variety that Tony Hernandez has been let go by Channel 5. His last day is April 16, if he makes it that long after ragging on...

Playing with numbers

Mack Reed at LAVoice.org has some fun with celebrity campaign contributions via the database at fundrace.org, which lets you search Federal Elections Commission records by name, address or zip code....

More Loh down

| 6 Comments
Numerous updates have been posted to yesterday's entry on the KCRW-Sandra Tsing Loh (now KPCC) situation. Go there....

Steve Lopez rides the bus

| 4 Comments
Times columnist Steve Lopez took the bus from home in Silver Lake to the office for the first time since he lost his driver's license due to suffering seizures after...

State of the blog

| 4 Comments
With seven days left in the month, March has already set a new traffic record for L.A. Observed. For the month so far, there have been 64,825 visits and 335,664...

An amazing place

| 3 Comments
JPL's Mars rover Opportunity has found rocks that formed in a standing body of salt water. Possibly an ocean. It's the "strongest evidence yet" of a previous habitable environment....

Disney's 'Warrior Princess'

The L.A. Times' Michael Cieply profiles Disney communications chief Zenia B. Mucha, a former aide to New York Gov. George Pataki nicknamed the "Director of Revenge." Razor-sharp and acid-tongued, Mucha,...

Writer goes to see Bush

| 3 Comments
Laurie Burrows Grad, the L.A.-based food writer who also stages the annual Dinner at Sardi's benefit to raise money for Alzheimer's research, had a 35-minute audience with the president yesterday...

Danny Bakewell takes over Sentinel

Danny Bakewell, president of the Brotherhood Crusade and a longtime activist in the L.A. African American community, has formally taken control of the Los Angeles Sentinel, the city's oldest and...

Look who's coming to L.A.

| 2 Comments
Jayson Blair is scheduled to appear and sign his book on April 2 at 7 p.m. at Eso Won Books on South La Brea....

Another Loh shoe drops *

| 25 Comments | 3 TrackBacks
And you thought the Sandra Tsing Loh episode was fading away. KCRW General Manager Ruth Seymour has apparently had enough of being bashed by Loh over their much-publicized split. Seymour...

We ♥ The New Yorker *

| 1 Comment
For the first time, more people in California buy The New Yorker than in New York, writes Cynthia Cotts in the Village Voice. The score was 167,580 in California (with...

Correction of the day

| 1 Comment
NBC's anchor-in-waiting Brian Williams was not stripped and body-cavity searched recently at the San Diego airport. Broadcasting and Cable magazine regrets misinterpreting the joke Williams told... (via I Want Media)...

The other Loh shoe...

| 4 Comments
Sandra Tsing Loh is taking her axed KCRW commentary across town to rival NPR outlet KPCC. She'll be doing a weekly gig starting in June. Everyone's happy in today's press...

KTLA takes care of the Times *

| 1 Comment
Last night's KTLA "News at Ten" found time to report on the L.A. Times annual in-house editorial awards dinner, held over the weekend at the Beverly Wilshire. Odd news judgment...

The other Michael Jackson

| 5 Comments
Al Martinez' column (subscribers only) in the L.A. Times Calendar section Monday visits with the other Michael Jackson, the longtime local radio host who has been off the air for...

Blogging in memoriam

| 1 Comment
Last week's plane crash and house fire on Mar Vista Hill -- a few blocks from the L.A. Observed bunker, in a neighborhood that's home to several journalists -- has...

CalArts' Black Clock

| 1 Comment
Mark Sarvas' blog The Elegant Variation has a report from the launch party for Black Clock, the new literary journal from CalArts edited by Steve Erickson. It was held at...

George Will, parachutist

| 2 Comments
The bow-tied pundit drops into South L.A. for a ride-along with LAPD Sgt. Sean Colomey. Hard to tell if they ever got out of the car; the column is in...

Blogger on the move

Robert Tagorda adds some perspective to the Claremont McKenna College hate crime/hoax episode as an alumnus of the tight-knit school. Meanwhile, Tagorda announced last week that he and his wife...

Something funny about this mag list

| 5 Comments
In his column at TV Week, Alex Ben Block rips Entertainment Weekly's ranking of the "25.5 funniest people in America." In fact, he calls it "one of the worst power...

Paved paradise (and you guessed it)

| 1 Comment
The football field and track at L.A. City College on Vermont Avenue (the original home of UCLA) is now a parking lot. But the grandstand remains. Will Campbell has the...

It pays to fight fires

Four L.A. city firefighters made $200,000 in salary and overtime last year and dozens of others got more than $150K, the Daily News' James Nash reports today. Some firefighters are...

Rhonda Miller not going away *

| 4 Comments
Miller is the Hollywood stuntwoman who came forward just before the recall election last fall to publicly allege that Arnold Schwarznegger groped her, then was labeled a criminal by his...

Bratton sighting

New York's tabloids still think L.A. police chief William Bratton is pretty hot stuff when he returns to his old haunt. He turned up in the Post's Page Six gossip...

Newspaper trust

| 1 Comment
L.A. Times Managing Editor Dean Baquet shows up in a New York Times story Monday on the rash of newspaper fabrication and plagiarism discovered since last year's Jayson Blair scandal....

Distinction regroups

Distinction magazine has undergone a makeover and been moved further away from the L.A. Times within the Tribune company's structure "to allay any concerns about editorial control," the L.A. Business...

Gross story of the week

| 3 Comments
The L.A. Business Journal front page has stories on Hahn fundraiser Ted Stein and ex-commissioner Leland Wong retaining criminal-law attorneys, the Wolfgang Puck empire and businessman John Anderson. But the...

WSJ bureau chief leaving

Jonathan Friedland has headed up the Los Angeles bureau of the Wall Street Journal since April 2000. He just confirmed to L.A. Observed by email that he is leaving the...

Calpundit is no more (almost)

He's now posting fulltime as Political Animal at the Washington Monthly site. The old Calpundit locale will be used only occasionally for personal items, he says. Previously: L.A. blogger goes...

Bill Deverell to USC

An L.A. Times piece today by Stuart Silverstein reports on USC's recent academic hiring binge. Among the new professors is respected L.A. historian William Deverell, who is moving over from...

Kennerly up for NYT post

| 4 Comments
Santa Monica photog David Hume Kennerly, a Pulitzer Prize winner in 1972 for Vietnam coverage and a contributing editor at Newsweek, is on the short list of finalists for the...

KPCC voice returns

Steve Julian had been the NPR's station's local host during "Morning Edition" until leaving in January for Chicago. But he's coming back to his old slot on Monday, says LARadio.com....

Register and voting snafus

R. Scott Moxley writes in the OC Weekly that the Times broke the news of the Orange County screw-up involving 7,000 primary ballots and that the Register trailed way behind....

On the term 'flack' *

| 14 Comments
Last month, you might remember, Daily News op-ed columnist Mariel Garza vowed to no longer call Fleishman-Hillard because of the cost to taxpayers when the PR giant bills official clients...

Copy editors honor LAT

| 1 Comment | 1 TrackBack
A team of L.A. Times headline writers won the top prize for 2003 from The American Copy Editors Society. The judges had this to say about the LAT entries: These...

Holland quits at WGA

| 1 Comment
The Writers Guild's embattled stand-in president Charles Holland resigned today. The email to WGA members follows, forwarded from several members while I've been out and around (thanks to you all):...

Designated hitter

| 24 Comments
Cathy Seipp goes to bat for Sandra Tsing Loh in her fight with KCRW one more time in today's CityBeat. The problem at KCRW wasn’t really that Big Brother was...

Praise for Patterico *

| 11 Comments | 2 TrackBacks
Jay Rosen, chairman of the NYU journalism department, has a piece up at his Press Think blog giving credit to anti-LAT blogger Patterico for pushing the Times to "even up"...

Never mind

| 7 Comments | 2 TrackBacks
Remember that hate crime directed against a Claremont Colleges professor who speaks out against racism? Police now suspect that Kerri Dunn slashed her own tires, broke her car windows and...

Reading some (but not all) Vollmann

William T. Vollmann’s Rising Up and Rising Down runs seven volumes and 3,000 pages and costs $120 from McSweeney's. David L. Ulin confesses in tomorrow's LA Weekly that he hasn't...

Rookie junketeer

| 1 Comment
Walter Chaw lives in Littleton, Colorado, likes movies and reviews a ton of them for Film Freak Central.net and Rotten Tomatoes. To his surprise, Chaw found himself invited to the...

Bev Hills High and cancer *

| 4 Comments
Back in November, Eric Umansky in the New Republic savaged claims by famed paralegal Erin Brockovich-Ellis and people around Beverly Hills High School (and a report on KCBS Channel 2)...

Magazine award finalists

| 3 Comments
Caitlin Flanagan of the Atlantic Monthly is up for a National Magazine Award in the Reviews and Criticism category. Otherwise, it's pretty slim pickings for locals on the list of...

Greater meaning to Loh affair?

| 5 Comments
NPR Ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin thinks that KCRW's firing and reinstatement of Sandra Tsing Loh -- and her decision to reject the offer -- raises larger issues for the network. He...

LAT's Pulitzer buzz

The Times' apparent domination in the Pulitzer Prize competition this year is being taken by other newspaper editors "as a sign that the paper has put itself back on top...

Lisa Gubernick, WSJ writer was 48

Gubernick had been the Hollywood correspondent for Forbes from 1987-90. She joined the Wall Street Journal as an entertainment writer in 1998 and died yesterday in Manhattan, the New York...

LAT Sports loses Harvey

| 3 Comments
Randy Harvey has been a reporter and columnist for the L.A. Times sports section, and most recently has been a senior assistant sports editor. He's moving to be the sports...

De Vries sells two more novels

L.A. journalist and author Hilary de Vries, whose first novel So Five Minutes Ago follows the life of fictional celebrity publicist Alex Davidson, has sold The Gift Bag Matters and...

KCRW tweaks lineup

| 5 Comments
Ricky Jay and San Francisco Chronicle book critic David Kipen are among the additions coming to the local commentary slots during NPR's afternoon "All Things Considered." Starting in April, the...

Don't invite them together

| 1 Comment
Author and journalist Ann Louise Bardach has written for Vanity Fair, Los Angeles, Talk, George and, among others, the New Yorker -- but you can probably scratch that last one...

Fox loves Jayson

| 4 Comments
Disgraced ex-journalist Jayson Blair has been on three Fox News Channel shows already to plug his book about the New York Times, and has interviews set on the Fox affiliates...

Press Club calls for entries

The L.A. Press Club is still looking for awards entries from Southern California journalists. The deadline is Friday. Information here....

KCRW's email to listeners

| 3 Comments
Following yesterday's release of her joint statement with Sandra Tsing Loh, KCRW general manager Ruth Seymour sent a missive to the station's email list: Dear Concerned Listener: [Joint statement omitted]...

Boing Boing feted

Boing Boing, the group blog co-written by Mark Frauenfelder and Xeni Jardin in Los Angeles (as well as others), cleaned up in the 2004 Weblog Awards, or Bloggies, announced today....

KCBS yanks reporter over slurs

| 3 Comments
Channel 2 reporter Rick Chambers was taken off the air for two days last week after airing racial slurs in a taped story about that protest over hate crimes at...

KCRW backs off Loh's firing! *

| 19 Comments
She won't return to the air, but the radio station and Sandra Tsing Loh issue a joint statement: KCRW RESCINDS DISMISSAL OF SANDRA TSING LOH SANTA MONICA, March 15, 2004...

Bad news for news media

Tidbits from Howard Kurtz's story in the Washington Post on a new report card on the media from the Project for Excellence in Journalism: "Americans think journalists are sloppier, less...

Arnold bombs on cover

The New Yorker's worst-selling cover of 2003 was the one about Arnold Schwarzenegger as "California's strongman." The best-selling double issue was winter fiction. Jesus covers sold best at the Economist...

L.A.'s mayor derby

Rick Orlov in the Daily News reports that former police chief, and current councilman, Bernard Parks is expected to announce for mayor "any day now." Remember, Jim Hahn refused to...

LAT.com goes botox

Jacques Steinberg in the New York Times reports on the pitch received last week by 400,000 registered users of LATimes.com -- an invitation to click on an advertorial section espousing...

Pay to play

| 1 TrackBack
Before USC law professor and op-ed meister Erwin Chemerinsky heads off to Duke this fall, he has agreed to advise Mayor Hahn on how the city's big money-rich departments should...

Chance to see Perino's

LA.com is making a marketing splash if nothing else, with ads visible around town and spots on KCRW. Now the portal website backed by Dean Singleton and others will open...

An LAT blog?

| 3 Comments
Prime space in the Travel area of LATimes.com announces "Postcards from Paris," which is supposed to be staff travel writer Susan Spano's journal of living the next seven months in...

Magers story coming Sunday

| 2 Comments
Somebody asked in email recently what's with all the Paul Magers mentions here. All I can say is check out the big Times Calendar story Sunday on the $2.2 million-a-year...

New critic at NY Observer

Tom Scocca, senior editor of the Washington City Paper, is the new media critic at the New York Observer. He will write the Off the Record column in place of...

More Loh down*

| 29 Comments
Backlash continues from KCRW's dismissal of Sandra Tsing Loh. The hometown Santa Monica Mirror's editorial this week, titled "Loh Blow," blasts the station and general manager Ruth Seymour. Like almost...

LAT photo prize

| 1 Comment
Brian Vander Brug of the L.A. Times won a National Journalism Award in photojournalism from the Scripps Howard Foundation. He gets $5,000 and a trophy. No other locals were honored....

La guerra again

On Life and Times tonight (KCET, 7 p.m.), Toni Guinyard reports on the newspaper war for Spanish-speaking readers here between La Opinión and Hoy. Earlier: La guerra is on...

Reading Gawker & Wonkette

| 3 Comments
Jack Shafer, Slate's media critic, clicks on Gawker and Wonkette a dozen times a day but hates to admit it. He wishes the Nick Denton experiments in blogging for profit...

Swink magazine arrives

| 2 Comments
The new "bi-coastal, biannual print magazine dedicated to identifying and promoting established and emerging literary talent" is out. The editor is Leelila Strogov. Writers in the first issue of Swink...

Schachter moves at NYT

Jim Schachter, a former assistant business editor at the L.A. Times now at the New York Times, was in line for, but did not get, the NYT business editor job...

Striking similarities

| 4 Comments | 1 TrackBack
Consider this paragraph in a recent top-of-the-page lead story in the L.A. Daily News by Troy Anderson, about recycling firms accused of skimming money: Californians bought more than 18.2 billion...

Cooper on Marshall Frady

| 1 Comment
Marc Cooper has an entertaining appreciation of his friend and journalism mentor, the late Marshall Frady, in The Nation. Frady died this week at 64. Cooper's obit begins: I first...

Et tu, KPCC?

| 18 Comments
The Pasadena public radio station yanked the series "The Play’s the Thing" from its lineup because of a couple of banned words spoken during a Feb. 7 rebroadcast of the...

Analyzing Hahn

| 1 Comment
The lede in today's piece on Mayor Jim Hahn in CityBeat by Charles Rappleye: There’s no question Mayor Jim Hahn is a strange political bird. Laconic and dewy-eyed, timorous and...

On Natalie Wood

| 3 Comments
David Ehrenstein of the LA Weekly sits down at home with British ex-pat Gavin Lambert to reminisce about Hollywood and Natalie Wood, the subject of Lambert's latest book. "I came...

Kaplan on at Air America Radio

| 24 Comments
The program schedule for the liberal talk show net that takes off March 31 is out, and as reported in December, USC's Martin Kaplan is on it. "So What Else...

$150 to reprint an LAT item

| 11 Comments
Caryn at art.blogging.la is unhappy that the L.A. Times won't let her post for free the full text of a story in the paper about an exhibition at her gallery....

Remembering Carter Barber

| 1 Comment
Rip Rense's column today at the Rip Post recalls several of the characters he got to know and like working at L.A. newspapers in decades past. It centers on Carter...

Sam Tanenhaus gets NYTBR

Romenesko has the memo from Bill Keller: Sam's list of accomplishments should probably be headed by his virtuoso 1997 biography of Whittaker Chambers, a finalist for both the Pulitzer and...

Soldiering on for Martha

| 1 Comment
Don Aucoin at the Boston Globe has a little fun pondering who might inherit Martha Stewart's role as arbiter of taste. Paris Hilton, Donald Trump, and Carmelo Soprano are among...

Palmy dating days

| 24 Comments
Alexandra Jacobs does the "Palmy Days" column observing on Los Angeles life for the New York Observer. This week, she writes about the practical differences between dating here and in...

Another vote against Eisner

| 1 Comment
This time from Diane Disney, Walt's last surviving child. She tells Jim Bates of the L.A. Times that it's time for Michael Eisner to step down. Tick, tick, tick......

More copy desk foibles

| 4 Comments
This time from the San Jose Mercury. First, the correction in Tuesday's paper: The front-page Mike Cassidy column Saturday misstated the kind of place mats sold in Kmart under Martha...

Variety drops porn blog

| 7 Comments
Based on an anonymous tip, I dropped in on Variety.com's weblog page and found that "The Porning Report" is history. "Coverage of the porn industry's move to mainstream" had been...

SUV arsonist charged

A Caltech grad student in physics has been arrested and charged with last summer's arson rampage against Hummers and other SUVs at four dealerships in the San Gabriel Valley. A...

Tichi Wilkerson Kassel, was 77

| 2 Comments
The former editor and publisher of The Hollywood Reporter died Monday morning at Cedars-Sinai after complications from intestinal surgery, the paper reports today. She had suffered from Parkinson's disease for...

Evan Maxwell on journos and blogs

| 9 Comments | 1 TrackBack
I went poking around the Editor & Publisher site to see if they decided to acknowledge that the Pulitzer list Joe Strupp crowed about having on Monday appeared here two...

Goldberg goes the San Francisco route

| 2 Comments
Former L.A. City Council member Jackie Goldberg, now in the state Assembly, and her partner of 28 years, poet and activist Sharon Stricker, were among six gay and lesbian couples...

Misplaced fears

| 11 Comments
In the months after 9/11, many travelers gave up flying to drive instead, thinking it "safer." The end result was 350 more traffic deaths, author and Hope College social psychologist...

Fighting bias with bias

| 6 Comments
Hard-core anti-L.A. Times bloggers Patterico and Xrlq are going national, so to speak, as regular contributors to a new group blog, Oh, That Liberal Media! It launched March 2, claiming...

Blue jeans to Gore

A sampling of book deals from today's Publishers Lunch weekly. Non-fiction: • Journalist and critic James Sullivan's AMERICAN BLUE, the story of blue jeans, from their development in the days of...

Body of Spalding Gray ID'd

| 3 Comments
The New York City medical examiner needed to use dental records to confirm that the remains found in the East River were those of the missing monologuist. Gray was 62....

L.A. blogger goes legit

| 1 Comment
High-traffic liberal blogger Kevin Drum will be writing Calpundit for money for the Washington Monthly, starting as soon as the new URL comes down. Yes, I have sold out to...

Meanwhile, at KCRW...

Variety's Claude Brodesser discusses the hot movie of the moment, The Passion of the Christ, on The Politics of Culture, Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. Tonight on Life & Times (KCET-TV,...

Loh ho ho*

| 61 Comments
Those following the end of Sandra Tsing Loh's six-year run as a KCRW commentator may want to tune in Marketplace this afternoon. Cathy Seipp says that Loh (who also comments...

Eisner as Third World despot

| 8 Comments
Michael Hiltzik, in today's LAT Business section: Speaking as someone who lived and worked for years in a string of petty Third World dictatorships, I believe I'm well qualified to...

Pulitzers redux

The full list of Pulitzer Prize finalists in the journalism categories that we reported on Friday (apparently first) has shown up today on the Editor & Publisher website. The story...

Chatting with Aristide

| 1 Comment
The Pacifica Radio show "Democracy Now!" phoned up the exiled Haiti President Jean-Bertrand Aristide this morning in the Central African Republic. The show re-airs between 9 and 10 a.m. on...

Hahn's 'nightmare scenario'*

| 2 Comments
Noam N. Levey, the new guy in City Hall for the Times, takes stock of the potential lineup of challengers to Mayor Jim Hahn and finds enough interest out there...

Additions to March calendar

| 1 TrackBack
The March calendar of events has picked up some new listings. Among them is a book party to be thrown by the LA Weekly next week for its own writer,...

New journo blog noted

| 1 Comment
Timm Herdt, newly linked on the left, is state bureau chief for the Ventura County Star. He blogs mostly about politics on the Star's site, and in a recent item...

Too funny not to steal

| 1 TrackBack
The L.A. Times has probably taken more lumps than it deserves over the changing of "pro-life" to "anti-abortion" in an opera review. (See LAT's anti-abortion opera). What looks to be...

LABJ: Eisner should go

| 1 Comment
This week in the L.A. Business Journal, Editor Mark Lacter moves his weekly commentary out to the cover and calls for Michael Eisner's departure from Disney. Over the years, there’s...

No more noisy Starbucks

Attention West Side writers: screenwriter Aleks Horvat, founder of the Hollywood Creative Directory, has opened a private rental work space on 26th Street in upper Santa Monica (across from the...

Rough day at JournalSpace*

The blog host went down earlier today to upgrade, putting up a notice that it would be back in service by noon L.A. time. The promise later changed to 1...

VF goes blogging

| 5 Comments
James Wolcott opens his exploration of politics blogs in the April Vanity Fair (not online) by asking "are we in danger of drowning in blogorrhea?" But he comes around, shows...

Medrano goes national

Channel 4's legal reporter Manny Medrano is the former federal prosecutor who got into TV news as an analyst on the O.J. Simpson case and other big trials in the...

'This is a vile book'

| 2 Comments
Tim Rutten reviews Jayson Blair's Burning Down My Masters' House: My Life at the New York Times, in the L.A. Times Book Review: Blair owes the readers and colleagues he...

Rush and Sandra, together

| 4 Comments
On the L.A. Times op-ed page Sunday, Rush Limbaugh and Sandra Tsing Loh both expound on the radio decency issue. You'll know which is which: So are we now going...

Getting serious about In-N-Out

| 9 Comments
Jennifer Garner vowed on the Oscars red carpet to hit In-N-Out once the night ended. Vanity Fair served the burgers at its party at Mortons. On Sunday, the New York...

Book prize finalists

| 1 Comment
Some of the finalists for this year's L.A. Times Book Prizes are listed in the paper today (full list is below). Among the local nominees are Michelle Huneven for her...

Oh, but it is true

| 1 Comment
Says AP, via Yahoo and I Want Media: "Gov. Schwarzenegger, the former action figure and champion bodybuilder, has inked a deal to become executive editor of Muscle and Fitness and...

'Big tobacco' out at LAT

| 9 Comments
The descriptor "Big Tobacco" has been used in the L.A. Times 56 times in the last two years. But the term will probably show up less often now that the...

Gossip on Pulitzer finalists*

There are unofficial, and more to the point unconfirmed, lists of Pulitzer Prize finalists floating around the newsrooms at both the L.A. Times and New York Times. Both papers have...

Paul Magers draws web traffic...

| 8 Comments
But not much else? I've said before that the name of the big-bucks KCBS anchor imported from Minneapolis is the number one search engine term that brings casual visitors to...

This can't be true

| 3 Comments
Or can it? The New York Post's Keith J. Kelly says today that Gov. Schwarzenegger "is close to signing a deal with the parent company of the National Enquirer that...

Alarcon first to jump

| 5 Comments
State Senator Richard Alarcon opted out of running for mayor of the Valley in the secession election in 2002, but he's about to become the first candidate to pull papers...

Cole gets photo honor

| 3 Comments
L.A. Times photographer Carolyn Cole, whose work from overseas shows up here on occasion, was given the Newspaper Photographer of the Year award in the annual University of Missouri competition...

In-house stuff

Viruses posing as emails from people you know are coming around again. Just a reminder, if you get any email with an attachment that claims to be from me or...

New masthead titles at Variety

| 5 Comments
Elizabeth Guider has been named deputy editor of Variety and Daily Variety and Timothy M. Gray has been named executive editor. From the published story: Guider, who grew up in...

Writers Guild talks

| 37 Comments
Steven Mikulan in the LA Weekly sets the scene for the upcoming contract talks between Hollywood screenwriters and producers. With the Writers Guild's president under siege, financial pressures and the...

David Johnston Q-and-A*

| 6 Comments
In today's CityBeat, Dennis Romero interviews New York Times taxes reporter David Cay Johnston about his new book, Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign To Rig Our Tax System To Benefit...

Hahn's worst nightmare?

| 2 Comments
Los Angeles County DA Steve Cooley isn't going away now that he was reelected Tuesday in a walk. And yesterday, he told reporters for the first time that fundraising by...

Chemerinsky to leave L.A.

USC constitutional law professor Erwin Chemerinsky begins at Duke University in the fall. His wife, Catherine Fisk, a labor law professor at USC, also is moving to Duke. Chemerinsky was...

Portrait of an unhappy man

| 1 Comment
The humiliation of Michael Eisner. Top right on the New York Times front by Laura Holson, with sidebars. Lead story in the LAT, mainbar by Richard Verrier and James Bates,...

Garage sale art fetches $1 million

An actor who paid $5 for a 19th-century painting at a Los Angeles garage sale three years ago has sold it to a museum for $1 million, ARTnewsletter says. The...

LAT's 'anti-abortion' opera

| 79 Comments | 15 TrackBacks
Here's why reporters want newspaper corrections to make clear that an editor is at fault for an error introduced to their copy. Last week, the L.A. Times' Mark Swed filed...

'Loh Life' axed by KCRW*

| 65 Comments
Sandra Tsing Loh's Sunday morning commentary "The Loh Life" has been taken off the KCRW air, apparently over her use of a bad word. [See updates at end of post.]...

A mellower Mike Davis

| 9 Comments
The author of Los Angeles studies City of Quartz and The Ecology of Fear has a new science-adventure tale for children out called Land of the Lost Mammoths. Susan Salter...

Playing the Amazon reviews game

| 5 Comments
Sara Nelson in the New York Observer: By my count, the reviews and the ranking system on Amazon.com count for about 95 percent of writers’ hopes, anxieties and dreams. Which...

'A habitable environment'

The news is considered so profound (or cool, if you prefer) that scientists were flown from JPL in Pasadena to Washington to announce today that a huge question about Mars...

City bans some funders

Busy day in L.A. City Hall. In the morning, the City Council by a vote of 15-0 banned some kinds of political fundraising by appointed commissoners and lobbyists. Mayor Hahn...

Cole's photos from Haiti

| 9 Comments
L.A. Observed reader John Krill (www.photoessayist.net) lauds today's full two-page double-truck photo spread from Haiti by L.A. Times photographer Carolyn Cole. But he complains, why is her credit so small?...

Oh that Judith Regan

Publishers Lunch is amused by LAT baseball writer Ross Newhan's reference to Judith Regan (in a story today about ex-star Jose Canseco's book) as a "mansucript developer for HarperCollins." Quoting...

La guerra is on

La Opinión versus upstart Hoy. True to its Tribune Company home, the Los Angeles news on Hoy's site is registration only. LAT story....

Arnold and Gray Show

Arnold Schwarzenegger returned in triumph to "The Tonight Show" with Jay Leno Monday night, and who should drop in but Gray Davis. The two govs bantered, with Davis saying that...

Correction noted

| 9 Comments
The Tuesday New York Times does indeed correct Sharon Waxman's Oscar story from Monday, both the error Hollywood was gabbing about and a couple of other errant facts. An article...

Defending Martha

As the Martha Stewart case goes to the jury, UCLA law prof Stephen Bainbridge argues in a column at Tech Central Station that criminal charges never should have been brought....

If Sonny Barger can do it...

This should provide inspiration (of the pull your hair, bang your head on the wall kind) for the aspiring novelists among you. Publishers Lunch reports that Ralph "Sonny" Barger, who...

LABJ not happy with Hahn

Editor Mark Lacter of the L.A. Business Journal uses his column this week to let Mayor Hahn have it. Seems that on Feb. 18, Hahn met with LABJ editors and...

New wrinkle at WGA

| 8 Comments
Screenwriter Chuck Pfarrer, who really did serve as a Navy SEAL, has sent an open email to members of the Writers Guild calling out guild president Charles Holland, who has...

Bloggy sarcasm alert

Matt Welch poses a question that every presidential candidate should be asked: if God loves the United States, does he love the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and American...

Goodbye to Cy Zoerner

| 1 Comment
Garrison Frost writes in The Aesthetic (The South Bay's Journal of Arts and Ideas) of attending a memorial service last week for Cy Zoerner, a contributor to his site who...

Bart doubts Gibson will suffer*

| 2 Comments
In his weekly column, Variety Editor Peter Bart faults last week's New York Times story by Sharon Waxman in which studio heads say (not for attribution) that many won't work...

Hiltzik a Stern fan

Writing as a "frequent listener," LAT Business columnist Michael Hiltzik points out in Monday's "Golden State" column that Clear Channel has approved of Howard Stern's radio crudeness for years and...

Allow more driving time

| 2 Comments | 1 TrackBack
President Bush will be in town Wednesday, messing with evening rush hours traffic. You might want to avoid the area around the Convention Center (11th Regional White House Conference on...

56 years and counting

| 1 Comment
When Stan Chambers began covering news for KTLA, there were only 100 televisions in Southern California. Since then, Chambers estimates he has reported about 20,000 stories for Channel 5. At...
Aon tower
aon-tower.jpgWilshire and Hope, downtown Los Angeles. Once known as the First Interstate Bank tower.
Don Shirley on CTG's new season
Paul_Oakley_Stovall-ctg.jpg Once again our columnist has to ask: where is LA in the upcoming schedule of the Center Theatre Group? Native Intelligence
Engine 23
engine-23-5th-street.jpg 5th Street in Downtown LA.
Church of Type
church-of-type-pico-sm.jpg Pico Boulevard, Santa Monica.
Garden envy
garden-envy-vdt.jpgVeronique de Turenne has a case of it. Here in Malibu