LAT notable: Patrick McDonnell, now the LAT's bureau chief in Buenos Aires, wrote about his two years in Baghdad in the Times' Sunday magazine...Steve Lopez helps his Skid Row violinist get an apartment and a private lesson from a Philharmonic cellist...New York Atty. Gen. Eliot Spitzer's payola trail led to Columbia Records vice president Charlie Walk and Sony Music Label Group U.S. Chief Executive Don Ienner, The Times's Charles Duhigg reported....Calendar's cover is a profile of anonymous Hollywood crew blogger "Peggy Archer" of Totally Unauthorized (first mentioned here in May...her name is a pseud, turns out.)
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa spoke Friday with three finalists for the top job at the Port of Los Angeles, David Zahniser reported in the Daily Breeze: #2 port exec Stacey Jones, former #2 Tay Yoshitani and Port of Long Beach official Geraldine Knatz.
Ti Ciudad staff writer Dennis Romero worked under Robert Hilburn and posts an appreciation at Danceblogga. Also, a commenter at Coolfer claims that LA Weekly music editor Kate Sullivan is the girlfriend of Jeff Whalen of Tsar, the band featured on the paper's cover this week (and at the paper's Spaceland party.) The issue has come up previously on Luke Ford's blog (and this weekend in emails to me.)
The LAT Book Review gets takes on the most surprising books of 2005 from Carolyn and Lisa See, Kevin Starr, David Halberstam, John Rechy, Pico Iyer, Bernard Cooper, Nick Hornby, Tod Goldberg and others. Goldberg, Samantha Dunn and Gary Phillips are also posting to a Times online forum on What is L.A. Lit?
First Friday gatherings: About forty media, blog and Hollywood types schmoozed over drinks and appetizers organized by television producer-writer (and former California Magazine editor) Scott Kaufer at Yamashiro. The LAT, Los Angeles, Variety, Reason, Slate and National Review Online were among the outlets represented. And in the Valley, Daily News Editor Ron Kaye spoke to about seventy people at the public policy and politics-oriented First Friday Club at the Studio City Daily Grill. Jack McGrath, the former City Hall official and campaign adviser who runs GM Communications, organizes.
The plan for Robinsons-May in Beverly Hills: mixed use and high-rise condos. The Beverly Hilton next door at the junction of Wilshire and Santa Monica boulevards also plans to build condos; same for the space between Saks and Barneys.