First thing Wednesday

Breakstone•  Channel 2 won't renew the contract of political editor Linda Breakstone after eleven years, reports. No additional details, except that political reporter Dave Bryan remains with the station. Before Channel 2, Breakstone covered politics at Channel 7 for five years. She was a political reporter for the Los Angeles Herald Examiner before going into television in 1989, and previously chased stories for City News Service.
•  Shout radio host Michael Graham, fired in Washington, D.C. after calling Islam "a terrorist organization," has been hired to fill in at KFI, the Drudge Report says. Graham was a guest of John Ziegler's on Monday.
•  Speaking of Drudge, he used to get knocked for adding nothing to stories he got credit for breaking. Now his L.A. editor Andrew Breitbart has become the ultimate middleman. He launched a website that just compiles AP and Reuters news feeds, and the Drudge Report links there instead of to the actual sources. Breitbart gets an artificial traffic boost and, perhaps, can sell some ads.
•  After the Target-sponsored New Yorker issue and Garth Brooks' deal with WalMart, Variety's Brian Lowry wonders what's next: Courtney Love brought to you by Rite-Aid and the complete Kirstie Alley filmography from Jenny Craig?
•  Villaraigosa commission appointee Tony Scudellari is in hot water for an email containing slurs against supporters of Nick Pacheco, the ex-councilman running in the 14th district. The mayor's office calls his remarks "surprising and disappointing."
•  Ready for Johnny Stompanato the movie? Keanu and Zeta-Jones are circling.
•  Model Kate Moss paid $3 million for a condo in Sierra Towers on Doheny Road, making her neighbors with Lindsay Lohan and Matthew Perry, says Page Six.
•  There's some new research into L.A. earthquake faults and, as usual, it isn't good news.
•  Graffiti is already a huge eyesore along the Valley's Orange Line route, and the busway hasn't even opened.
•  Can't say I'm surprised that the hard feelings between Dodgers Jeff Kent and Milton Bradley turn out to be about race and respect. Paul DePodesta should have seen this coming.
•  Aimee Bender has a piece of fiction excerpted from her upcoming Willful Creatures at the sex site Nerve.

And a mystery mostly solved...

Spider poolPick any arcane topic and there probably are aficionados finding each other on the web. Fans of 1950s cheesecake nudes have stayed up late at night pondering the locale of a pool and backyard where hundreds of photos were shot. Scenes typically feature a great view of the San Fernando Valley and a distinctive spider design in the tile. Enter, home of L.A. Conservancy's Modern Committee. A woman there found the spot in the hills of Studio City, reports on what is left, and fleshes out (sorry about that...) the story. Clicking on all the links leads to an interesting L.A. tale, but if mild female nudity troubles you don't make the trip.

More by Kevin Roderick:
Ralph Lawler of the Clippers and the age of Aquarius
Riding the Expo Line to USC 'just magical'
Last bastion of free parking? Loyola Marymount to charge students
Matt Kemp, Dodgers and Kings start big weekend the right way
LA Times writers revisit their '92 riots observations
Recent Television stories on LA Observed:
Transferred Miramonte teachers wait - and learn to sew
KNBC 'live-tweeting' the run-up to '92 riots
'20/20' drives down Sunset Boulevard, talks to celebs
A sour prognosis on KCET's future
Dick Clark, TV music pioneer was 82 *

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