First thing Friday, 9/9 *

Posting will be light today...

Bolton Hall from LAPL Collection    Mayor Villaraigosa safaris out to Tujunga this morning to unveil his appointees to the Fire Commission. If you don't know where that is, well, it's beyond the Valley. Nestled where the Verdugo Mountains almost but don't quite meet the San Gabriels, Tujunga used to be an independent municipality before annexation by Los Angeles in 1932. The still-standing former city hall—built of boulders to serve a farming commune—is fifteen years older than the iconic L.A. tower downtown. Bolton Hall, they call it, is Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument #2. It's only nineteen driving miles from First and Main streets, closer than many other parts of the city. For fun, here are some old Sunland-Tujunga fire station pics.
    The Central City Association—essentially the lobbyist for downtown business interests—has taken another step toward mending fences with the mayor. They bet on the wrong horse and supported Jim Hahn over Villaraigosa, but on Thursday the CCA endorsed Herb Wesson and Jose Huizar for city council in the open 10th and 14th districts.
    ExperienceLA has pulled together a running schedule of local Katrina relief events. Event planners wishing to add their benefit to the list can click in here.
    Now we know: when you need to nab a gator, you don't summon experts from Florida or Colorado (what's with that, anyway?) You call the fire department. But which one? The Breeze says that L.A. County firefighters caught the smaller of the two Harbor City alligators yesterday, while the Times gives credit to a Los Angeles city crew. [ * It's city: The Breeze corrects in its later story. 9:35 a.m.]
    The mystique of The Original Pantry is described with a clarity I've not read before, by Ryan at losanjealous. Also on the blog, Bill DeMarco resumes rating the Top 50 Starbucks in L.A.
    Jonathan Shapiro, writer on "The Practice" and "Boston Legal" and exec producer of the new "Just Legal," is profiled by fellow non-practicing lawyer Tom Teicholz in today's Jewish Journal. Shapiro, a Rhodes Scholar, grew up in the Valley and used to be chief of staff for Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante, a stringer for UPI, a writer for Ring magazine and a federal prosecutor.
    For the last couple of months, the Jewish Journal (a sponsor of L.A. Observed) has been promising to give away a free Ipod. I don't know what you had to do to win it, but I notice the Journal website says the winner is...Tim McOsker. I assume it's the former Hahn chief of staff.
    Down on the farm: two pitchers on the Dodgers' AA farm team in Jacksonville combined on a no-hitter in the Southern League playoffs. Remember these names: Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Broxton. It takes the sting out of how weak the Dodgers' top minor league team, in Las Vegas, was this year. Vegas stunk worse than the big club, perhaps because their best players all played in L.A. most of the season.
    The owner of the Beverly Center, convicted in a price-fixing scheme, sells his stake in Sotheby's.
    Looks like sex tips offered by L.A. author Jen Sincero (The Straight Girl's Guide To Sleeping With Chicks) have joined the regular lineup at LAist. They call it Living in Sin.

And from our sun-addled friends down south...

OC Weekly coverThe OC Weekly celebrates its tenth anniversary with a nice throwback cover and a roundup of the staff's favorite stories that mattered. First on their list is The Secret Lives of Robert K. Dornan, in which R. Scott Moxley wrote that the L.A. television pundit-turned-Orange County congressman presented a "rare mix of oratory, religious fervor, unbridled ego, historical obsession, emotional instability and an unnatural interest in gay sex." In the Regrets portion of the issue, Gustavo Arellano—whose Ask a Mexican columns are a regular feature—recalls how he had to flee from a California Coalition for Immigration Reform meeting and give up "one of the most fruitful beats of my career." Also, "Commie Girl" Rebecca Schoenkopf regrets not naming names after observing a sex act performed on an Angel in the parking lot of a rock club soon after they won the World Series a few years back.

More by Kevin Roderick:
Standing up to Harvey Weinstein
The Media
LA Times gets a top editor with nothing but questions
LA Observed Notes: Harvey Weinstein stripped bare
LA Observed Notes: Photos of the homeless, photos that found homes
Recent Politics stories on LA Observed:
David Ryu and candidate Mike Fong
Tronc buys (NY) Daily News, La Tuna fire aftermath and more
Helping in Houston, new lion cubs, Garcetti's back
Garcetti has weekend date in the Hamptons
Garcetti hitting the road to New Hampshire
LA Confederate monument coming down
LA Observed Notes: Back from vacation and into the fray
Rendon fights for neglected Southeast
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