LA Observed archive
for March 2009

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

Quiet party at Getty House

gettyhousewikipedia.jpg The party itself was probably pretty loud — a black-tie bash for old pol Willie Brown's 75th birthday, at Mayor Villaraigosa's official residence in Windsor Square. What was quiet about...

Liz visits and blogs about it

lizarnold.jpg Liz Arnold moved to New York to freelance for magazines on interiors and homes after working here at Western Interiors & Design. At her relatively new blog Homebodies, she posts...

Wounded LAPD officer quits department

The Hollenbeck station veteran who said he was shot in the shoulder by two men outside his home in East Los Angeles in January has left the LAPD after being...

Hollywood scene: wine bottle vs. watermelon

I hadn't checked in with studio tradesperson Peggy Archer's blog in awhile. Today at Totally Unauthorized, she reports pseudonymously from a shooting set. One of our pivotal scenes yesterday involved...

Retirees cost a lot in the San Gabriel Valley

Jennifer McLain at the LANG papers in the SGV has pulled together the retiree medical costs facing 24 cities and finds this year's $11 million tab is due to rise...

Koreatown angst over Little Bangladesh

bangladeshila.jpg Some Koreatown leaders are miffed over a push to officially carve out a Little Bangladesh section of the community. "There is a pride in calling this Koreatown," said Chang Lee,...

Michael Sommer, ex-journalist was 73

Sommer died in a trauma helicopter en route to UCLA after being hit by a car in an Agoura Hills parking lot last week. His mother Ann, 98, also suffered...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 3.31.09

County Supervisors pay a student worker to peel the labels off bottles of water and replace them with a customized county label so that Arrowhead won't get free publicity...

Black paint ban is DOA

That is, if it ever really existed. From Martin Zimmerman at Up to Speed, the LAT's auto blog: The California Air Resources Board said...it has no plans “at this time”...

Perenchio is at it again

A. Jerrold "Jerry" Perenchio, the former chair of Univision, has donated $1.5 million to back two of the May special election measures being pushed by the governor. It's the...

Tomorrow's correction today?

Regarding an unbylined item in today's L.A. Times about a lesbian Presbyterian seeking to be ordained as a minister (or priest, as the Times put it), an LA Observed reader...

Authors like this kind of prize

Judy Pasternak will get $30,000 from the Lukas Prize Project Awards for Exceptional Works of Nonfiction to help finish her book, "Yellow Dirt: The Betrayal of the Navajos." The book...

Sitrick grabs another ex-LATer

This time it's Aaron Curtiss, the former innovation editor at the Los Angeles Times, moving over to the crisis PR shop run by Michael Sitrick. I had an item last...

CityBeat tribute from photog

Ted Soqui posts several of his CityBeat covers at his blog with a note that he felt honored to be a contributor from day one. "Worked with several amazing editors,...

Busted: parking in the yellow

The folks at Discarted take umbrage that a Los Angeles parking officer camped out in a loading zone during her lunch break in East Hollywood....

LAT ramps up celebrity staffing

The Times is moving "celebrity justice reporter" Harriet Ryan from Metro downstairs to the newly ascendant entertainment team. The former Court TV senior correspondent will be "part of our expanded...

Sam Zell's Brazil connection

Tribune master Sam Zell, trying to restore his stature as an astute investor "after his disastrous buyout of Tribune Co.," has surfaced as an unlikely player in a controversy in...

Morning Buzz: Monday 3.30.09

David Zahniser takes a post-Measure B look at Brian D'Arcy, who runs the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 18 at the DWP. LAT Three high-level managers forced out...

Steven Bach, studio exec & author was 70

stevenbach.jpg Steven Bach was the executive at United Artists who took the fall for "Heaven’s Gate" and went on to write "Final Cut," which William Grimes in the New York Times...

Envisioning a new Los Angeles

lariver32909.jpg New York Times architecture critic Nicolai Ouroussoff includes Los Angeles in an essay arguing for steps that should taken in four U.S. cities that would begin "making our cities more...

Maurice Jarre, Oscar-winning composer was 84

mauricejarre.jpg Jarre won Oscars for the scores of "Lawrence of Arabia," " Doctor Zhivago" and "A Passage to India," and composed music for more than 150 other films. He died in...

Psst, how about Arnold to start a newspaper?

arnoldharleysmall.jpg Author and Slate blogger Mickey Kaus has several friends at the Los Angeles Times, but for years he has been advocating the demise of the paper — partly in the...

A little site maintenance

Now just seems like the right time to upgrade the software that runs this place. So some links may not work this weekend. Then it will all be over. In...

Remembering a cop who was killed

Channel 4's Jennifer Bjorklund went to high school in the Bay Area with one of the four Oakland police officers killed in that shootout with a parolee. I'm told her...

So much for those later deadlines *

The L.A. Times recently gave the Calendar section a later copy deadline, made possible by the killing of the California section. But when you axe too many copy editors, stuff...

Morning Buzz: Friday 3.27.09

Marisela Villar, daughter of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, gets paid $68,000 a year by state taxpayers to be a field representative for Speaker Karen Bass in Santa Ana. Yolie Flores...

Weekly down: CityBeat to shutter

Here's the memo: It is with great regret that as of the March 26, 2009 issue, Southland Publishing, Inc. has decided to discontinue publishing the Los Angeles CityBeat alternative weekly...

Worst voter turnout: USC precinct

Essentially nobody voted anywhere in this week's special election to pick Mark Ridley-Thomas's successor in the 26th state Senate district. But in the precinct that covers the USC campus, the...

Observing Tejon Ranch

A new city proposed on the Tejon Ranch at the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley — or viewed another way, on the northern edge of SoCal's sprawl —...

Afternoon news and notes

Chief Bratton endorses another candidate — this time in New York City. L.A. Now KPFK suspends "anti-Semitic hatefest" show "La Causa" for six weeks; its followers blame the Jews....

Changes at Hoy, LAT Magazine

Hoy, the Spanish-language paper that reports to the marketing side of the Los Angeles Times, is switching from daily to weekly. The Times' Sunday magazine will narrow its circulation to...

Salary cut, days off at NYT

All non-union employees at the New York Times are losing 5% of their pay for at least the rest of this year. Ten more personal days off are part of...

Malware update for Thursday: still clean!

LA Observed is safe to visit -- readers coming in on IE are having zero trouble. But Google is being slow to update its alert about yesterday's malware script, which...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 3.26.09

Most of the state ballot measures up for a publc vote in May are losing. LAT, Bee New PPIC poll finds Californians still just as divided as ever on...

Brand XXX?

Sigh. The website for the L.A. Times' new weekly tabloid for light readers, called Brand X, is already dysfunctional. Word from an insider is that it was "blocked inside the...

What would you pay for Nikki Finke?

Not Finke the reporter, but her website Deadline Hollywood Daily — though they are really one and the same. The Wrap's Sharon Waxman tries to figure out what the site...

Fleming appointed to MWD

Mayor Villaraigosa named attorney, philanthropist and former city commissioner David Fleming to the board of the Metropolitan Water District. (This gets Fleming off the MTA board, opening up a second...

LA Times goes for 'Brand X' *

Unfortunate choice of names, perhaps, but the L.A. Times is officially calling its new weekly tabloid Brand X. It's the latest grasping at straws down on Spring Street and replaces...

Craig Newmark in Hollywood tonight

Zcalo and the New America Foundation are hosting the founder of craigslist at the Arclight tonight at 7:30. Reservations are only available for the waiting list (and the Zcalo website...

Malware update * (all clear!)

Google's security team got in touch to alert me that their scans have indeed found a malware script hidden in some LA Observed pages. They don't think it's infecting visitors,...

More confirmed L.A. Times names *

From what I hear, some Los Angeles Times newsroom reporters and editors are still discussing with higher-ups whether to leave and under what conditions. So it's a developing situation. Here...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 3.25.09

Assemblyman Curren Price led the field in the 26th state Senate special election and will face Republican Nachum Shifren and Cindy V. Henderson of the Peace and Freedom Party...

Stacy Keach returns to 'Frost/Nixon'

If you still have tickets to the Ahmanson for this weekend, you should be pleased to hear that Stacy Keach will return to the role of Richard Nixon for three...

I guess 'furlough' means everybody

Daily News top editor Carolina Garcia is out of the office this week on mandatory unpaid furlough. It's not just for hockey writers....

LAT: 'We remain committed to foreign coverage' *

I asked Bruce Wallace, the L.A. Times' Foreign Editor, to detail the moves affecting his correspondents in the wake of today's announcement that the staff is combining with the Chicago...

More reporting depth leaving Times

This week's mix of voluntary departures and layoffs from the Los Angeles Times includes (in addition to those reported earlier) these staff veterans: William C. Rempel, a reporter and editor...

Times foreign staff 'unifying' with Tribune

Editor Russ Stanton just sent the newsroom the word that the L.A. Times foreign staff will now be a Tribune operation, run out of Los Angeles with reporters from the...

Investigative reporters go private

Wall Street Journal reporters Sue Schmidt and Glenn Simpson are leaving the paper to launch SNS Global LLC, which Politico's Michael Calderone calls "a new company where theyll do investigative...

Google's malware warning

Some people coming to LA Observed in the past day or so have received pop-up warnings, ostensibly from Google, saying the site is infected by malware. As far as we...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 3.24.09

Nikki Finke reveals, in a post that discusses her relationships with other bloggers, that the owner of Variety has talked about buying her website and alleges that Peter Bart...

Afternoon news & notes

Times film columnist and blogger Patrick Goldstein responds to Variety's weekend package on bloggers and says of Peter Bart: "He's launched his own blog, which you'd have to call...

Sacramento coverage takes another hit

The Roundup picks up that reporter Jordan Rau is leaving the L.A. Times Sacramento bureau, apparently not as part of today's layoffs. Presuming that Rau won't be replaced, the Sacto...

Further cuts at NPR

Cinny Kennard's position as head of NPR West won't be filled, plus there are cutbacks in travel, training, salary raises and discussions with the unions about further reductions. Here's the...

Steve Hymon out at Times *

L.A. Times staffers affected by today's cuts began getting calls at home yesterday, with one of them transportation writer Steve Hymon. He posted confirmation of his layoff on his LAT...

Bad news on shopping streets

Boutiques and other small shops are closing like mad on Montana Avenue and on West 3rd Street, Melrose Avenue and Robertson Boulevard, the L.A. Business Journal observes in a front-page...

Morning Buzz: Monday 3.23.09

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa plans to ask the MTA to reconsider its objections to AnsaldoBreda, the Italian rail car manufacturer whose cars have been flagged by the agency for significant...

Layoffs Monday

Staffers in the Los Angeles Times newsroom expect the the next wave of forced departures to come down today, along with revelations of colleagues who choose this moment to retire...

Malibu takes the butts out

An especially persnickety bunch of Escondido Canyon residents has won the fight to change the name of DeButts Terrace because, as Veronique de Turenne says at Here in Malibu, they...

The New (more gullible) Media

Times media columnist James Rainey wrote over the weekend about how political pros love one unintended consequence of the wane of mainstream news outlets and the rise of blogs —...

Weekend desk-clearing

Rick Orlov offers the L.A. politics obituary for City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo: "Could be remembered as the loneliest guy in City Hall." DN The 151 pages of sign regulations...

Ellies oversight

I missed this last week: Bon Apptit has four, count them four, nominations in the National Magazine Awards. The mostly L.A. staff is up in the categories of general excellence...

Black Panthers go gray

Former Los Angeles members of the Black Panther Party for Self Defense got together at the Lucy Florence Coffeehouse and Cultural Center in Leimert Park for a screening of "41st...

Ayers & Lopez on '60 Minutes'

Morley Safer did a nice piece on the connection between L.A. Times columnist Steve Lopez and Nathaniel Ayers, with some reportage on the Downtown street musician's former life as a...

UCLA headed home

Villanova 89, UCLA 69 in the NCAA tournament on Saturday. ESPN...

The battle over Part of Sherman Oaks

Daily News staffer and blogger Steve Rosenberg lives in the latest part of Van Nuys that wants to transfer its real estate karma into Sherman Oaks — and he isn't...

'Everything goes gonzo, never to return'

Journalist Chris Willman attended an American Cinematheque screening of the 1976 Woody Guthrie biopic "Bound for Glory" at the Aero Theatre that became, he writes on Facebook, "a nerve-wracking, weird...

Jazz Bakery closing its doors

Proprietor Ruth Price says the non-profit music and art venue lost its lease at the Helms Bakery in Culver City and will close there on May 31. She plans to...

David Lee Briggs Sr., shoeshine man was 56 *

Briggs was known around Los Angeles police headquarters at Parker Center as Dr. Dave, Minister of Leather. He shined shoes in the lobby for 21 years and on Monday he...

L.A. Disconnected

This morning at The Foundry on Melrose, Los Angeles Magazine convened a panel to talk about President Obama. There was plenty of that — some of which inspired my KCRW...

Newsroom furloughs are catching on

Add the Register in Orange County to the list of local media imposing unpaid time off on their workers. Staffers were told today to take off five days between April...

Scratch one travel writer

For the past few years, Times reporter Hugo Martin has hiked, skied and soaked in hot springs for the Travel section. No more: now he's going to the Business section...

City wishes Xenu happy birthday

The deficit-facing city council has made noise recently about halting its practice of waiving the fees levied on community events — but for sci-fi writer and Scientology founder L. Ron...

Day to Done *

Along with putting on a darn good daily radio hour these past five-plus years, the folks losing their jobs today at NPR's "Day to Day" have been doing a nice...

Where did Obama sleep Wednesday night?

Tina Daunt says in the Times that President Obama bedded down at the Century Plaza. The Beverly Hills Courier, however, reports that he was at the Beverly Hilton and has...

'On the Media' apologizes and retracts

The NPR media show takes back what it said about "The Infinite Mind," another public radio series, and its host on a program last November. "On The Medias" host Brooke...

Open meeting activists hit with $86,000 bill

Californians Aware and its former president Richard McKee, a Pasadena City College professor, have been ordered to pay the legal fees that Orange Unified School District incurred after being sued...

Election is final, Measure B lost

It was a squeaker, but here's the final breakdown on Measure B, the solar energy jobs program pushed by the mayor, city council and the DWP union in the March...

Obama's good timing for KCET *

While in Pomona today, President Obama met with students from the Village Academy High Schoool who had made a video about the recession. KCET's SoCal Connected has a story on...

Obama shies away from Hollywood *

President Obama stayed at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza [or not; see below] on this trip into L.A. rather than bed down in one of the mansions around town, and...

Uproar over KPFK's 'La Causa'

The new Jewish Journal has a story on anti-Jewish and anti-Israel (and anti-Villaraigosa) statements by Augustin Cebada, the name used by the host of the pro-Aztlan "La Causa" airing on...

Game on over *

The Cal State Northridge Matadors are leading Memphis by 3 in their NCAA tournament game with 8 minutes left. On Channel 2. * No Cinderella story: Memphis 81, Northridge 70....

They miss their Trash 80's *

Talk here of the old Radio Shack TRS-80 computers that reporters lugged around in the 1980s elicited some memories from LAO readers. "Loved that Cranston campaign piece, but I must...

Bellows remembered by Mary Anne Dolan

Mary Anne Dolan was hired at the Los Angeles Herald Examiner by Jim Bellows and followed him as editor. Below are her remarks at last Friday's memorial service for Bellows,...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 3.19.09

President Obama will depart from Long Beach Airport about 6 p.m. after today's town hall near downtown and afternoon taping with Jay Leno in Burbank. The Los Angeles Planning...

Update your mental image of Charles Manson

Charles Manson is now 74 years old and has been in state prison for almost 40 years — this time around. Manson had been locked up before he moved to...

Obama in the OC

LA Observed's TJ Sullivan was credentialed into President Obama's town hall this afternoon in Costa Mesa and sent along some photos. He'll have more later at his website. In the...

Cook's Library on 3rd to close

Another good bookstore is folding up its tent — and the news drew multiple, audible protests here in the house when I read it out loud. "After 20 years selling...

Natasha Richardson dies of brain injury

The British-born actress, 45, is survived by her husband Liam Neeson, mother Vanessa Redgrave, sister Joely Richardson, aunt Lynn Redgrave and two children. Richardson won a Tony in 1998 as...

Stroke knocks Keach out of 'Frost/Nixon'

I caught "Frost/Nixon" on stage last week at the Ahmanson. Stacy Keach as Nixon was the show's most powerful performer and crowd pleaser. Alas, he's out indefinitely after suffering a...

Los Angeles Mag up for an Ellie

The National Magazine Awards finalists are out and The New Yorker leads the way with ten nominations. including for general excellence. Los Angeles Magazine is also up in general excellence,...

KCRW to stream Obama town halls

KCRW.com will carry today's stream from the Orange County Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa starting at 4 p.m. Tomorrow's event at the Miguel Contreras Learning Center near downtown...

Gloria Allred booted from octo-home

The Whittier Daily News says that the police were called last night to get attorney Gloria Allred to leave the home before two of Nadya Suleman's babies arrived. La Habra...

San Diego Union-Tribune sold

Nope, not to Sam Zell, Ron Burkle or Dean Singleton. Only time will tell if this is better for the paper and for San Diego. The buyer of the Union-Tribune...

Burbank Airport, even older

Ron Dickson, who writes about the aviation history of the San Fernando Valley, sends along this photo of the terminal and tower at Burbank before Lockheed took over and stucco-ized...

Times upgrades California Editor

David Lauter was promoted to L.A. Times assistant managing editor. "This appointment reflects David's skilled leadership of our largest and most important news-gathering operation, the local and California report," says...

Alan Cranston campaign bus, 1986 *

Sen. Alan Cranston's 1986 reelection campaign was the first one I covered where Hollywood celebrities rode along on just about every bus trip across California. They would be introduced at...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 3.18.09

Tickets went fast for President Obama's town hall in Orange County today. LAT, Register, Chronicle Former SLA member Sara Jane Olson/Kathleen Soliah was released from Chowchilla state prison to...

Peering into Burbank's time capsule

The Burbank Times did a nice job with the 1959 photographs that were recovered from a time capsule dug out of a bridge in Burbank last month. The publication put...

'This is AOL reporting'

There's about to be a fresh news outlet covering politics. Would you believe AOL? The Wrap reports that the service has hired Melinda Henneberger of Slate, and formerly of the...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 3.17.09

Today's the day Gavin Newsom holds his town hall in Santa Monica, which Carla Marinucci sets up in the context of the 2010 race for governor: "We expect that...

NPR West's chief lands at USC

Cinny Kennard, Managing Director/Managing Editor of National Public Radios West Coast production center in Culver City, found a good exit gig. She's going to USC Annenberg as senior fellow at...

Coy Watson, photog and child actor was 96

James Caughey "Coy" Watson, Jr. was the eldest of the Watson offspring — six boys and three girls — who made a mark in Los Angeles first as child actors,...

Dylan's scent is blowing in the wind

Bob Dylan's neighbors in Malibu are up in arms over his porta-potty. Bob Pool at LA Times.com: How sweet is life when you live next to a celebrity in Malibu?...

Inside a burning trailer

Bob Ashburn rescued his neighbor Tom from a trailer engulfed in flames at the Diamond Valley RV Park in San Jacinto. From Watershed News: "At first I couldn't see anybody,"...

Add Obama: L.A. event on Thursday

In addition to the previously reported round of media events on Wednesday and Thursday, the White House has added what it's calling a "town hall" with President Obama at the...

William Claxton memorial

Friends of the late jazz and fashion photographer William Claxton are gathering this evening at LACMA's Bing Theater to celebrate his life. Scheduled speakers include his wife, the actress and...

President Obama is coming to town, will do Leno *

The Occidental College alum will be here Wednesday for the first time as president — in Long Beach, Costa Mesa in OC and Pomona. He's also going to tape a...

Morning Buzz: Monday 3.16.09

The Getty plans to slash its operating budget nearly 25% for the coming fiscal year, "an emergency response to investment losses that have totaled $1.5 billion since July and...

Ron Silver, actor was 62

Silver had been undergoing treatment for esophageal cancer for two years. He died today at home in New York. Silver won a best actor Tony in 1988 for "Speed-the-Plow" and...

Trojans get it done

USC's basketball team followed up last night's upset of the Bruins with a 66-63 win today over Arizona State, giving the Trojans the Pac-10 tournament championship for the first time...

Saenz not going to Justice after all

President Obama has appointed a Maryland state official to head the Justice Departments Civil Rights Division, meaning that Villaraigosa adviser Thomas Saenz didn't get the job. The Daily Journal reported...

NYT columnist defends himself in L.A.

New York Times op-ed columnist Roger Cohen incurred the wrath of many Persian Jews here when he wrote last month that Jews in Iran have it pretty good. "Im a...

Cops get schooled by reporters

Kiran Alvi and Stuart McClave, student reporters at USC's NeonTommy, have a good story up — when sheriff's detectives claimed they didn't know how to reach a Compton shooting victim,...

Wait, Marines embedded with reporters?

Orange County Register staffers are being asked to let Marine Corps PIO's turn the tables a bit and do ride-alongs with the journalists. Here's the newsroom memo: From: Dennis Foley/OCR/FREEDOM...

Anna, never Ann *

I don't typically flag routine media typos — never have, and less so these days — but this error on the L.A. Times website today seems to have bothered people....

Bellows, Jean Seberg and the FBI

In a "Blowback" piece on the Times' opinion web page, former LAT staffer Allan Jalon goes into the controversy that ensued after Jim Bellows let Times gossip columnist Joyce Haber...

Five new city commissioners

The newcomers include John Kim, co-director of the Advancement Project and director of the Healthy City Project, appointed to the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners. He's from Highland Park. Release after...

'Marketplace' hires

The American Public Media show based on Figueroa Street downtown has added Bill Radke as a host of "Marketplace Morning Report," joining Steve Chiotakis on April 13. Radke was co-host...

Morning Buzz: Friday 3.13.09

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger endorsed a California constitutional convention to overhaul state government, a practice last used in 1878. He's also out campaigning for his tax measures. Sacto Bee, LAT...

USC reporter confronts Yaroslavsky

When Alex Comisar of NeonTommy, the USC news website that recently launched, was rebuffed in an interview request of Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, he took it public and confronted Yaroslavsky in...

Madoff, Waters and more

Mark Lacter at LA Biz Observed has been following today's jailing of Bernard Madoff in New York, the New York Times story on Rep. Maxine Waters' questionable involvement with OneUnited...

Insult or injury — or both?

National Public Radio is canceling all of its newspaper subscriptions, opting instead to grab the stories it takes from print journalists off the web. Romenesko Memos...

Fade In magazine's screenwriting contest: bogus?

Amy Kaufman at The Wrap has a piece up raising a lot of questions about Fade In's promise of cash and an intro to Hollywood for the winners of a...

Slow day

I'm in a conference all day....

Zell interviewed by feds in Blagojevich case

Tribune acknowledged that chairman Sam Zell was interviewed in January by federal prosecutors as a "potential witness" in the criminal investigation of former Illinois Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich. Zell also...

When the Times was in the Valley *

A promotional video from 1993 [? see below] for the Los Angeles Times Valley Edition — an almost stand-alone newspaper put out by dozens of reporters, editors and other journalists...

Beautiful La Habra, home to the octuplets!

Greetings from the new home of octomom Nadya Suleman, her babies and half the TV news crews in Southern California. "It's pandemonium out here," emails longtime reader Thomas Naccarato,...

George Hedges, 'Indiana Jones of Hollywood lawyers'

Hedges died Tuesday morning at home in South Pasadena of melanoma. He was 57. He was a leading Hollywood lawyer and also made a name for himself as an archaeologist....

Envisioning a post-print L.A. Times

Rick Wartzman is not some Twitter-happy newbie who naively pimps New Media and technology. He's the former Business Editor at the Los Angeles Times, and was the editor of the...

Going way back with Bellows

I haven't gotten to all the Jim Bellows appreciatons that have been posted or published, but today's by columnist Jon Carroll in the San Francisco Chronicle is a bit different...

Talking up 'Brooklyn & Boyle'

Abel Salas, creator of the Eastside monthly Brooklyn & Boyle, took to his blog for the first time in several months to preen a little about the magazine after four...

King-Harbor could reopen in 2012

A tentative agreement between the county and UC would reopen the emergency room and other inpatient services at Martin Luther King-Harbor Medical Center near Watts by 2012. The hospital would...

Hertzberg adds a gig

Former Assembly Speaker and Los Angeles mayoral candidate Robert Hertzberg is becoming the Democrats' half of the bipartisan co-chair arrangement at the head of California Forward, which supports reform of...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 3.11.09

The MTA is taking another look at its plan to let local cities "sell" their stimulus funds for cash after the Pasadena Star-News reported on it. Star-News, LAT More...

The future of Pershing Square

Poring over a century's worth of old L.A. newspapers, you see certain issues recur. Billboards, for one. Another perennial is what to do with the public space downtown that was...

Tim Conway 'relieved' to be off KABC

Former 97.1 talker Tim Conway Jr. lasted all of a few days on his new home on the AM dial at KABC 790, then was let go Monday after general...

Pondering local news from the left

A coalition of groups including California Common Cause, the Center for Media Justice, the Urban and Environmental Policy Institute at Occidental College and the LA Alliance for a New Economy...

That's a big nest *

Author John Shannon says he smelled something burning while driving home today. Under the hood of his car he found this bird's nest smoldering atop the engine. His ride had...

Another editor leaves LAT masthead

Melissa McCoy is the Los Angeles Times deputy managing editor for copy desks, standards and the editorial library. She's decided to leave at the end of the week. Her email...

Is collusion the answer for papers?

David Carr, the New York Times media writer, argues that newspapers should stop giving it away on the web and that the nation's publishers should be legally free to conspire...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 3.10.09

Eli Broad told an audience in New York that "I would like to see our foundation and others join together to own the LA Times." Reuters/Romenesko Recent staff departures...

John & Ken's latest ratings scheme

The KFI talk hosts helped draw an estimated 8,000 people to a tax revolt rally in Orange County on Saturday. (Here's the Register story, and the Orange Juice blog.) The...

Villaraigosa's friends in the desert

Where eastbound Interstate 10 hits the desert at Cabazon, a few miles shy of the Palm Springs turnoff, this sign proclaims some of the locals' unhappiness with Los Angeles and...

Split decision on DST

Veronique de Turenne really dislikes Daylight Saving Time. I, on the other hand, consider the first day of evening sunlight like a second New Year's Day. I love that it...

Another reporter switches teams

Mark Arax, the former Los Angeles Times reporter based in Fresno, is joining the staff of the state's Senate Select Committee on Air Quality, a new committee headed by Sen....

One more day on the road

I've been enjoying a few days criss-crossing the deserts of Arizona and California, landing for the moment at a sidewalk cafe with wireless on Palm Canyon Drive in Palm Springs....

Jim Bellows, editor was 86

Bellows died Friday at a nursing home in Santa Monica after suffering from Alzheimer's. He had been an editor in New York, then the overseer of the features sections at...

LA Observed on KCRW

I'm still traveling, but through the magic of digital media I will be on KCRW at 4:44 this afternoon (and thereafter at KCRW.com and on iTunes.) The topic is Mayor...

Manny: 'I'm in a happy place' *

Manny Ramirez reported to spring training on Thursday in a good mood, laughing easily with teammates and reporters and professing to be in a happy place. With that infectious giggle,...

Chick won't run for City Council

Controller Laura Chick, in a statement this morning, said she has been asked a lot about running for the 2nd district seat that will be vacated by Councilwoman Wendy Greuel,...

Light posting this week

I'll be on the highway most of today and assuming a relaxed posting pace the rest of this week. Keep an eye on Mark Lacter at LA Biz Observed for...

Yeah, so Manny is back

Remember when Dodgers owner Frank McCourt vowed a few days ago that talks with Manny Ramirez would start from scratch? Well, the outfielder signed for the two-year, $45 million structure...

Measure B going..going..almost gone

With one 9th district precinct left to count, plus whatever else is left over, the solar and jobs measure trails by 1,322 votes. If that holds up, it's a stunning...

Some L.A. election races still in doubt *

In the 1 a.m. bulletin from the City Clerk, a bit over 89% of the precincts have been counted and nearly all of the mail-in ballots. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is...

Arneson goes to prison

Former LAPD Sgt. Mark Arneson was handcuffed and led out of court today to begin a 10-year federal prison sentence for his conviction as an accomplice of private investigator Anthony...

Local hikers rescued off Mt. San Jacinto

It took alpine-trained volunteers and a helicopter to do it, but Andrew Hillery, 24, and Chris Cannizzaro, 23, both of Playa Del Rey, were collected today from the deep snow...

Manny on his way to L.A. *

Officially there is no deal between Manny Ramirez and the Dodgers, but it sure smells like one is close. ESPNdeportes.com reported earlier today that the two sides had reached general...

Mahony, rabbi make joint statement on denier

Cardinal Roger Mahony and two Jewish community leaders have signed an Op-Ed piece reacting to Pope Benedict's lifting of the excommunication of Holocaust denier Richard Williamson, a bishop whose group...

Metrolink engineer texted about rides that day

Among the texts that engineer Robert Sanchez sent before the fatal crash in Chatsworth last September were messages arranging to let enthusiasts ride in the cab later that evening. Details...

Tijuana to Compton via Harvard Law

Good column in today's L.A. Daily Journal (by former editor Martin Berg) about a storefront law office on East Compton Boulevard run by Luz Herrera. She's just your typical Tijuana-born,...

Death of the auto mall

Mark Lacter's Tuesday recession reports on KPCC keep getting better — and more ominous — as the situation worsens. Today I woke to Mark talking about the bleak picture for...

Journo signs on with Ridley-Thomas

Aurelio Rojas, a reporter for the Sacramento Bee, is the new communications director for L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. An item at Capitol Morning Report says that Rojas used to...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 2.3.09

Today's the day the Los Angeles Times drops its California section and rearranges the paper's A section, with local news starting on page A2, followed by national and foreign...

Case of the really big emerald *

A front-page story in the Wall Street Journal slipped by largely unnoticed on Saturday — who reads the Saturday Journal again? — but the yarn by Tamara Audi is a...

Times book prize nominees posted

Rick Wartzman, the former editor of the LAT's own West magazine, is a finalist for a Los Angeles Times Book prize in the history category for "Obscene in the Extreme:...

Virgin Megastores to close

Virgin Megastores' five remaining retail stores will close by this summer, individuals inside the company told TheWrap today. The site says that Virgin Entertainment Group CEO Simon Wright announced the...

Election programming note

KPFK's weekly news review "Deadline L.A." is airing a special on the city election today at 2 p.m. with guests Marial Garza, Daily News editorial page editor, and Robert Greene,...

The new price of a traffic ticket

While you haven't been watching your politicians at work in Sacramento, they have added some unrelated charges to the cost of a ticket. Here's the breakdown of the tab for...

David Foster Wallace's last book

The New Yorker that hits the streets today has an excerpt from "The Pale King," the unfinished novel that David Foster Wallace was working on when he hanged himself at...

Morning Buzz: Monday 3.2.09

Architect Frank Gehry, who turned 80, has cut his staff by half and given up plans to build a new house in Venice. He's also concerned about the Grand...

Why the marathon wasn't today

Sara Catania hasn't been running fulltime to get ready for her first marathon — though she certainly has been running plenty (see Run On), and recently completed the first race...

NYT hits 'em when they're down

The New York Times' latest ad pitch to gather up defecting L.A. Times readers shows stories out of here on the Lakers, Eli Broad, William Bratton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, George Clooney,...

Dodgers cancel ticket hike

A website showing higher prices for single-game tickets went live in error, says the team. Now the prices will be the same as last season. "There had been an anticipated...

Kenneth Garner, LAPD deputy chief was 53

Nothing posted yet at the Los Angeles Police Department newsroom or blog, but the officers' union has issued a statement mourning the death at home this morning of South bureau...

Daily News: Alas, it's Antonio

The Daily News grits its teeth and endorses Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa again this time, just as it did four years ago (saying then "Villaraigosa...represents the future.") This time, there's less...

Metrolink engineer let teens ride along

This might be the story of the weekend. Robert Sanchez, the engineer driving the Metrolink train that crashed in Chatsworth last September, not only texted regularly with teenagers along his...

Chick on why she's against Measure B

Lame-duck Controller Laura Chick elaborates in The Planning Report on her opposition to the solar measure on Tuesday's city ballot. From the interview: Its egregious to put something on the...

Ben Reznik: lobbyist, litigant & fundraiser

From a David Zahniser story buried on page B9 in today's L.A. Times: Of the 363 lobbyists who worked the corridors of Los Angeles City Hall last year, no one...

Antonio 'concerned' about weaker media

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was speaking in his office Friday to a delegation from the California Chicano News Media Association: Latino Journalists of California. At one point, per notes sent to...
Vin Scully sends off Yaroslavsky
scully-zev-grab.jpgWatch the video of Scully advising Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky on how to get started as a baseball announcer — far away from his chair at Dodger Stadium. Inside
Where 'drank the Kool Aid' comes from
jonestown-massacre.jpgThe phrase may be offensive to someone you know.
LAO_JeremyScahill copy.jpg Click to see bigger.
Owens Lake dust settles
keeler-beach-tight-lao.jpgDWP and Owens Valley agree to fix the Eastern Sierra's air after all these decades. Read
Streetscape | Santa Monica Boulevard
smblvd-swap-meet.jpgBy Santa Monica Swap Meet, they mean East Hollywood. Bigger