LA Observed archive
for April 2009

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

New weekly coming to Santa Clarita

Jay Harn, former publisher at The Signal daily paper, is planning a mid-May launch of the Santa Clarita Valley Independent. Here's what Jeff Wilson says at SCV Talk: The 30-40...

Getty parking reactions

This morning's post on the Getty's $15 parking fee — I agreed with the NYT's Ed Wyatt that it's essentially an admission charge — elicited a nice flow and range...

Photog feels the Pang

Pangalcorn.jpg After OC money manager Danny Pang was released from federal custody in Santa Ana Wednesday and sent to home confinement on $1 million bail, he took exception to photographer Jonathan...

Weiss vs. Nuch on WWLA

Now that Shaq, Magic and the NRA have chosen up sides, City Attorney rivals Jack Weiss and Carmen Trutanich will take their gutter fight to tonight's Which Way, L.A.? on...

LA Sketchbook: LAUSD cuts

greenberglausdcuts.jpg Here's today's editorial cartoon by Steve Greenberg. Click on it for full size; here's Steve's website....

Media tweet o' the day

Where we chronicle how the mainstream media and other media-centric Angelenos are adapting to Twitter. LATimesfood Danger! Danger! I inhaled too quickly while scarfing my Aebelskivers and almost shot powdered...

NYT gets it on Getty fee

In a piece today on the Getty's financial pinch, the New York Times' Ed Wyatt puts the parking fee hike in perspective: For a hilltop museum with no public parking...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 4.30.09

Scientists studying the current swine flu virus say it doesn't look to be as fatal as past strains, and may be less dangerous than the usual flu. Meanwhile, a...

Swine flu strikes the downsized newsroom *

A SoCal newspaper editor passed along this fable, saying it came from a friend at the Denver Post. But I don't actually know who wrote it. (Update below.) One could...

Seemed like such a good idea

The commission that sets legislator salaries fell one vote short of approving a 10% pay cut for the California lawmakers who failed to pass a state budget for so many...

Get Mia and Vincent for your bedroom

umatravoltawax.jpg Here's your chance to own wax figures of Uma Thuman (as Mia Wallace from "Pulp Fiction") and John Travolta as Vincent Vega. They are part of a May 1 auction...

Live by flakkery, die by....

Now that the owner of the Century Plaza wants to tear down the hotel, Dakota Smith at Curbed LA dug up what developer Michael Rosenfeld's release said when he bought...

Chaos of the riots, 17 years ago

It was on April 29, 1992 that riots broke out at Florence and Normandie, and in the Civic Center downtown, after four white LAPD cops were acquitted in Simi Valley...

LA Sketchbook by Steve Greenberg

greenbergcaricature.jpg I'm pleased to say that Steve Greenberg will be contributing original editorial cartoons to LA Observed; this is his first. Steve is an editorial cartoonist, illustrator and graphic artist...

View from the top at City Hall

KPCC's John Rabe didn't just get to the public observation level high up on Los Angeles. He shot a video from the TOP, where the beacon shines over Los Angeles....

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.29.09

A Mexican child who died in Texas [fixed] is the first confirmed U.S. death from swine flu, and a Marine at Twentynine Palms may have swine flu and has...

Leaving the Daily Journal

Associate editor Daniel Yi has quit the L.A. Daily Journal to flack for the Port of Long Beach, and he left with an appreciative note to his colleagues about the...

In Mexico City, more questions than answers

mexicocityflu.jpg Los Angeles journalist Daniel Hernandez, in Mexico the past year or so writing a book, has left the federal district for Puebla to get a break from the "toxic urbanism...

Gov, Supes declare swine flu emergency *

Move sets up additional help for public health officials if needed. LAT, DN * Update to earlier story: Coroner no longer thinks those two L.A. County deaths are related to...

Bob Oates, sportswriter was 93

The longtime sports beat byline for the Examiner, Herald Examiner and L.A. Times died Monday at home in Baldwin Hills of age-related causes. Oates served on the original pro football...

Coroner investigating 2 flu deaths *

Symptoms resemble swine flu closely enough that more testing is being done, the Times reports at L.A. Now. Bellflower Medical Center reported the death of a 33-year Long Beach man...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 4.28.09

Antics du jour in the City Attorney race: Sheriff Lee Baca withdraws his Weiss endorsement, Town Hall forum cancelled after Trutanich won't come, Ace Smith asks Baca to debate...

Getty raises the barrier to entry

gettycenterview.jpg Parking at the Getty Museum will rise to $15 a car on July 1. The Getty likes to call itself a museum accessible to the whole city, but it's starting...

Times cuts off L.A. Youth after two decades

You might think the Los Angeles Times would do pretty much anything to keep the loyalty of possibly the last teenagers in L.A. who still consume news in print. But...

Lakers and Ducks move on

The Lakers were the #1 seed eliminating the #8 Jazz, while the Ducks achieved the reverse: the lowest-ranked playoff team in the NHL's west knocking off the top-seeded San Jose...

CDC: Avoid travel to Mexico

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a travel warning tonight advising against non-essential travel to Mexico, citing the swine flu outbreak there....

USC names its digital journalism trainees

Fifteen digital journalists from 10 states have been selected for the inaugural class of the Knight Digital Media Center’s News Entrepreneur Boot Camp. Local fellows are Julia Scott, who blogs...

No swine flu suspected in LA, docs say

Investigators are looking at two Los Angeles County clusters of influenza, but chances are they're the usual seasonal flus, county public health officials are saying on a televised press conference...

Morning Buzz: Monday 4.27.09

Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman caused a stir Sunday night at Disney Hall by announcing from the stage it would be his last U.S. performance because of the nation's military...

Magazine down: Portfolio

Editor in chief Joanne Lipman broke the news to the financial magazine's staff this morning, citing financial reasons at Advance, the parent of Conde Nast. The mag's media blogger Jeff...

Takedown of Frank McHugh

Times staffers Jessica Garrison and Kim Christensen went big on Sunday's page one with an expose on oft-accused L.A. slumlord Frank McHugh. Money grafs: For more than 50 years, McHugh,...

Sealing Sharon Stone file wrong, judge admits

From the weekend L.A. Times, by Harriet Ryan: In a statement attached to the newly opened file, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Maureen Duffy-Lewis said a series of missteps,...

Scenes from the Festival of Books

An amalgam of observations and reports from the L.A. Times Festival of Books, held Saturday and Sunday at UCLA: There were really long lines to have books signed by children's...

What went wrong at the Children's Museum

"It was supposed to be the Valley's first public museum, our own Disney Hall," says a Daily News editorial. Instead, the plan to relocate the Children's Museum to Hansen Dam...

In praise of the weeping bottlebrush

weepingbottlebrush.jpg "In spring, long, bristle-like stamens cluster together in intensely red, 6-inch long, hanging, bottlebrush-shaped cylinders that look like they would make doing the dishes fun," writes Pieter Severynen at the...

Book prize winners — and a no-show

stevewassermantruthdig.jpg How times change. Steve Wasserman, the former books editor at the Los Angeles Times, presided for years over the LAT Book Prizes soiree at UCLA's Royce Hall. He didn't even...

People of the Weekly

The current LA Weekly is the annual L.A. People issue. "Portraits of the waitresses and starlets ... the tech wizards and rock stars ... the activists, gang survivors, political warriors...

Paul Moyer officially done

paulmoyersmiling.jpg There will be no final swing of the bat on Channel 4 for longtime news anchor Paul Moyer. His retirement was announced earlier this month, and now KNBC news chief...

Sara's thrill is gone

runonbugcolor.jpg Sara Catania has a month to go before the Los Angeles Marathon, but her training regimen would be a lot more tolerable if she, you know, enjoyed running. Week 30...

Homeland security deputy mayor heading for DC

Deputy Mayor Arif Alikhan has been appointed Assistant Secretary for the Office of Policy Development in the Obama Administration's Department of Homeland Security. His current boss, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, has...

Senior editor out at Daily News *

Oscar Garza came aboard as senior editor/content — basically the same as managing editor — last August. He was caught in today's budget cutting and leaves at the end of...

Ed Boks out at Animal Services *

Mayor Vilaraigosa's office has put out a statement thanking the embattled Boks for his service. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa released the following statement today regarding the resignation of the Department of...

Turan disappointed by 'The Soloist'

Add L.A. Times critic Kenneth Turan to those reporting back with lukewarm reviews of "The Soloist," despite wanting to like it. I could back up and write all this in...

Morning Buzz: Friday 4.24.09

Political types are speculating that Mayor Villaraigosa will skip this weekend's Democratic state convention in Sacramento to avoid being outgunned by Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsom. Antonio's people say...

LA Observed at the Festival of Books

A nice group of LA Observed contributors will be taking part in this weekend's Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at UCLA. I'll be signing copies of Wilshire Boulevard and...

Rick Garcia to anchor at KCAL

The former Fox 11 and Channel 13 news and sports anchor starts tonight as co-anchor with Pat Harvey of KCAL's news at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Release after the...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 4.23.09

A commuter bus caught fire on the Ventura Freeway this morning, causing 30 passengers to be treated for smoke inhalation. AP The Republican leader in the Assembly also handed...

Guild asks Daily News staff to cut their hours

The newsroom guild at the Daily News has gotten the word about Friday's latest round of reductions — and asked its members to voluntarily reduce their hours in order to...

Mike Menza, 'secret weapon' of LA Weekly

Menza, the circulation director of the LA Weekly, died last night after battling cancer. Steven Mikulan, speaking for the staff in a story on the Weekly website, says the news...

Bass cancels pay hikes for Assembly staff

From Capitol Weekly: "Assembly Speaker Karen Bass abruptly rescinded 5 percent pay increases for dozens of rank-and-file members of the Assembly staff, citing concerns the pay raises might jeopardize the...

Tribune seeks court OK to pay bonuses

The Tribune Co. has asked the bankruptcy court for permission to make severance payments to 70 employees who left last year — and a more sensitive request to pay $13...

Annette Haddad, LAT reporter and editor

Longtime Los Angeles Times journalist Annette Haddad has died of cancer. Here's the newsroom announcement by editor Russ Stanton: From: Stanton, RussSent: Wednesday, April 22, 2009 10:57 AMTo: yyeditallSubject: Annette...

Corrections via Twitter

lattwittererror.jpg The L.A. Times city desk has found a new use for its Twitter account: correcting its mistakes. Tweets have been circling around the details of Los Angeles restricting lawn watering:...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.22.09

Rep. Jane Harman denied any wrongdoing in the quid pro quo allegations involving suspected Israeli spies, and in a letter to the AG called her wiretapping an abuse of...

Some LAT blogs get almost no traffic

If the blogs at the Los Angeles Times website are all about the ratings, the big winner is Elizabeth Snead's The Dish Rag. Her blog packed with items on celebrity...

Antonio not so confident about Weiss

In a meeting today with Times editors and reporters, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was asked if he could guarantee that his ally, Councilman Jack Weiss, would win the City Attorney runoff...

Betty Pleasant takes on Daryl Gates

Wave Newspapers contributing editor Betty Pleasant got hold of a letter that ex-LAPD chief Daryl Gates wrote ripping L.A. Times reporter Joel Rubin's coverage of the William Parker naming controversy....

Mister LA: We have a winner

scullymrla.jpg I told you who I thought should win — I guess I was right. Vin Scully came out on top of Los Angeles magazine's online Mister LA contest. He's not...

Still on TV from Sacramento

My post yesterday on NBC closing its bureau in Sacramento should have pointed out that ABC still maintains a fulltime presence in the state capital. Nannette Miranda, of course, has...

Speaker Bass hands out pay raises to staff

You know how state employees are being threatened with unpaid furloughs and salary cuts — and how Mayor Villaraigosa is asking city staffers to voluntarily give up some pay? And...

WSJ does the Lakers

With the Lakers in the NBA playoffs and expected by many to contend for the championship, the Wall Street Journal looks at why they dominate L.A. sports and concludes "the...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 4.21.09

Rep. Jane Harman's wiretapped conversation was with an AIPAC supporter who said Haim Saban would withhold campaign funds from Speaker Nancy Pelosi to help Harman become chairman of the...

Blogger's close call on freeway

Susan Kitchens was in the fast lane on the 605 last night when a driver sped by in the adjacent carpool lane — going the wrong way! She writes: I...

Harman wiretap story on Olney tonight

Congressional Quarterly columnist Jeff Stein wrote the piece getting a lot of play today about Rep. Jane Harman being snagged in a National Security Agency wiretap, apparently telling a suspected...

NBC pulls put of Sacramento

The NBC bureau in the state capital is shutting down. It fed stories to KNBC Channel 4 and the other California stations. Here's an email going around from reporter Mike...

George Torres guilty as charged

The Numero Uno supermarket founder and president was convicted today on federal charges that include racketeering and solicitation of murder. Somewhat of a surprise to court watchers, apparently. Steven Mikulan...

What power looks like

redondomokecloud.jpg John Stodder grabbed this image of the smoke that belched from the Redondo Beach power plant near King Harbor as generators cranked up to meet today's demand for air conditioning....

Shrinking Daily News to lose 3 more reporters

A photographer and a graphic artist are also expected to be laid off by the end of the week, according to what the union has been told by management. Some...

Pulitzer for L.A. Times' Boxall and Cart *

Los Angeles Times Metro staff writers Bettina Boxall and Julie Cart won the Pulitzer Prize in explanatory reporting, announced today in New York. The prize is for their Big Burn...

Dunne not gone from Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair writer Dominick Dunne, responding to readers interested in his future with the magazine, posts at DominicksDiary that he expects to be back in the pages of VF shortly...

Morning Buzz: Monday 4.20.09

Mayor Villaraigosa's budget to be unveiled at 11 a.m. will include plans to reduce salary costs 10%, some department mergers and privatizing, and cuts even in the police and...

Reporter beats the ticket

KTLA reporter Eric Spillman thought he had a good case so he fought the ticket he received via red-light camera while exiting the 2 freeway in Glendale. He won and...

Earl Gustkey, sportswriter was 69

Gustkey's byline appeared in the L.A. Times sports section for more than three decades, most notably on stories about boxing, the outdoors and the WNBA. "He was a sports editor's...

USC hit-and-run suspect arrested

Josue Luna, husband of the woman charged in the hit and run death of USC student Adrianna Bachan, was arrested Friday afternoon while entering the U.S. from Mexico at the...

Friday desk clearing *

The City Council approved shortage year water rates that will hit users with a hefty new charge if they don't reduce water consumption. Via release That federal indictment director...

Tentative SAG deal

Joint statement from the Screen Actors Guild and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers: LOS ANGELES (April 17, 2008) – The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers...

Shawn Mortensen, photographer was 43

The Los Angeles pop culture photographer died last night, according to several websites. SuperTouch, Daily Swarm, ThaIndian News...

Print movie ads fading fast

When Fox released "Dragonball:Evolution" in 2,000 theaters last weekend, it didn't bother with newspaper ads — or print reviewers, for that matter. The teens who were the target audience just...

Morning Buzz: Friday 4.17.09

The mayor is bringing S. David Freeman, the former head of DWP, back from the harbor commission to be his deputy on environmental issues, says David Zahniser. LAT Lt....

New Hollywood blogger at LAT

Joe Flint will take the lead on Company Town, the L.A. Times' entry in the blog space where the NYT has The Carpetbagger. Flint has a long resume and does...

Ritsch going with Obama

Massie Ritsch, the former L.A. Times politics desk writer and editor who has been Communications Director at the Center for Responsive Politics in Washington, is heading for the Department of...

Video: Baby L.A. opossum

'Tis the season for babies in the Los Angeles wildlife realm, and thus babies in distress. Mary Cummins, a licensed wildlife rehabilitator and president of Animal Advocates, collected this...

Checking in on Todd Marinovich

Esquire revisits the sad story of the USC football phenom, by way of Orange County, who was supposed to be the next big thing. Excerpt: 'I was the first freshman...

Woody Allen-Charney fight touchy for PR shop

There's a local PR angle to the legal squabble between Woody Allen and Dov Charney's American Apparel. Michael Cieply captures it at The Carpetbagger, the NYT's Hollywood blog. Mr. Allen...

Zot! UC Irvine law school gets their attention

Irvine's new law school — the one that was, then wasn't, and now is run by Erwin Chemerinsky — got a huge number of applicants for its first class and...

Lowry to Goldstein: who you calling soft?

Variety columnist and blogger Brian Lowry wasn't impressed by L.A. Times columnist-blogger Patrick Goldstein's recent critique of the trade paper and Peter Bart. Lowry's open letter to Goldstein gets a...

Sal Guarriello, West Hollywood councilman was 90

West Hollywood mayor Jeffrey Prang announced the death of the city's long-serving councilman, and one of the oldest elected officials in the state. From Prang's statement: He died peacefully this...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 4.16.09

Coverage of the local tea parties. LAT, DN, Breeze, KPCC News, Patt Morrison audio, Pajamas Media The campuses overseen by Mayor Villaraigosa would be especially hard hit under the...

Schwarzenegger pitches props at LAT

arnoldhertzberg.jpg Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger took his campaign for state propositions 1A through 1F to the Los Angeles Times building tonight, telling an invited crowd of opinion shapers and readers that "the...

Times' Pete King ankles newspapers

Peter H. King has been the Los Angeles Times city editor, California columnist, roving reporter and a writer of big stories over almost 30 years at the paper. He's jumping...

USC not under attack from airborne pathogen

That's the good news, of course. The bad news is that it even came up — blame "an ill conceived and unfortunate prank." From: Office of the Provost Subject: Pathogen...

Pellicano's Karl Rove 'connection'

While director John McTiernan awaits a new indictment over his use of wiretapper Anthony Pellicano in a divorce case, he's pushing a new documentary that alleges the Pellicano prosecution was...

Journo moves back with her dad

Rachel Uranga left the Daily News last year and now, in her 30s, has left Echo Park to move back in with her father. She writes about it in a...

Lesley Taplin, Downtown volunteer

Taplin, who was involved with the Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council from its inception in 2002, was killed Tuesday in a freeway car accident. Blogdowntown says that Taplin and her...

Chick taking Wilcox to Sacto

Rob Wilcox, director of communications for City Controller Laura Chick, will be the chief of staff in her new office in Sacramento. Gov. Schwarzenegger named Chick to be the state's...

Lizard people won't go away

The myth of the lizard people who dug tunnels under Downtown gets a new retelling on Fox 11 News' "fringe segment," featuring Los Angeles Public Library maps expert Glen Creason....

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.15.09

Fox News' hyping of today's anti-tax tea parties is a "team effort" that includes the news anchors and has been "building up to the protests with Super Bowl-style intensity."...

New legal term: 'spit and acquit'

dnawindow.jpg In tomorrow's Daily Journal, staff writer Don DeBenedictis writes that Orange County DA Tony Rackauckas has been dismissing felony drug charges if defendants submit their DNA samples. Upset judges and...

A Beatle in Hollywood

harrisonscrop.jpg George Harrison's son Dhani and widow Olivia today in Hollywood, where Harrison was honored with a star on the Walk of Fame (and they accepted a loaf of Monastery of...

State of the city and response

Mayor Villaraigosa had a busy TV day, appearing at boxer Oscar De La Hoya's retirement announcement and delivering his fourth State of the City speech down in Harbor City. The...

Trutanich supporter places anti-Weiss ad

A full-page ad on Page 9 of today's L.A. Times takes Councilman Jack Weiss to task for a proposed development near Cedars-Sinai. It's signed by Cary Brazeman as president of...

More layoffs at Variety *

Variety executive editor Michael Speier is among those losing their jobs as part of a 7% staff cut across parent Reed Business Information, says The Wrap.com. It's the second big...

Gil Cedillo has changed

Times columnist Hector Tobar picks up on the paper's look at state Sen. Gil Cedillo's lavish spending on restaurants, hotels and gifts and says "it's never been a better time...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 4.14.09

On-location film shooting in the Los Angeles area has fallen to the lowest level on record, due to labor troubles, the economy and runaway production. But off-site TV shooting...

It takes a village to make music in Iraq

timothyweston1.jpg After U.S. Army infantryman Timothy Weston requested advice on learning the violin while on deployment in Iraq, the online community at Violinist.com took over. Soon Weston had a violin, bow,...

LA Observed is clean

Websense appears to be the one web watchdog that has been slow to clear LA Observed from its malware list. That's why computers at the L.A. Times, some other companies...

Jerry Gillam, reporter was 77

Jerry Gillam covered California government and politics for 40 years, most of that time in the Sacramento bureau of the Los Angeles Times. He left the Times in 1995. Gillam...

O-Dog bonds with the fans

orlandohudsonopener.jpg Orlando Hudson went deep in his first game as a Dodger at today's opener, and became the first Dodger to hit for the cycle since Wes Parker in 1970. Fans...

Spector guilty of murdering Lana Clarkson *

spectorbookingcrop.jpg The jury came back today, after nearly 30 hours of deliberation, with a second-degree murder conviction for Phil Spector. He was taken into custody pending sentencing on May 29. The...

Compton gets its groove back

A web-only, video-rich feature at Newsweek's site says the city of Compton "has a new lease on life" after shedding its image as the region's murder capital. Excerpt: The community...

Bravo: Salonen's legacy

salonengoodbye.jpg Esa-Pekka Salonen is coming to the end of his run at the L.A. Philharmonic, and the tributes are mounting. This weekend the L.A. Times landed a package of stories on...

Morning Buzz: Monday 4.13.09

Controller Laura Chick reflects on her City Hall years for Rick Orlov as she prepares to go work for the governor. DN The City Council could appoint an interim...

LAT's Hollywood ads get more attention *

As expected, Sunday's four-page advertorial section for "The Soloist" in the Los Angeles Times is being talked about as the second act of the controversy that began with last week's...

Correction o' the day

This one's from the New York Times Magazine and regards a short item last December that reported a grad student's claim that crows at the Binghamton Zoo had been taught...

Weekend reads

adenhartjersey.jpg "The sudden appearance of these designs, even in provisional form, in the middle of a deep recession prompts a couple of questions. Why now? And why -- when the last...

Madeline Alice Spohr, 17 months

A memorial service is scheduled Tuesday for the baby of Heather and Mike Spohr, who live in Brentwood. Maddie, as she is known to many across the blogosphere, was born...

Now's it's Gil Cedillo who lives high

gilcedillo41309.jpg Now that State Sen. Gil Cedillo is running for Congress, his campaign expense reports get more attention. What popped out to the LAT's Michael Finnegan was the expensive meals at...

Blessing of the animals

Dogs, horses, rabbits, cats, turtles, birds — even a few lizards and a snake — got along famously at Saturday's traditional Blessing of the Animals at Olvera Street and...

Feds subpoena Tribune over Zell deal

The U.S. labor department has subpoenaed Tribune Co. in an investigation connected to the stock-ownership plan that was a key feature of Sam Zell's 2007 deal to take Tribune private,...

One ex-Timesman: I'm done

Kinsey Lowe left the L.A. Times Calendar editing staff in one of the 2007 contractions, telling colleagues "I have the highest hopes for all of you and for the Los...

Open letter to Anschutz

philanschutzchernin.jpg Phil Anschutz is the city's most elusive important billionaire — the builder of Staples Center, remaker of Downtown, and erstwhile Hollywood morals guru and news media mogul. On the occasion...

Take this waltz

Leonard Cohen returns to Los Angeles with performances tonight and tomorrow at the Nokia Theatre. He's backed by Julie Christensen and Perla Batalla in this video from a 1990s (or...

Once again, district lines mean nothing

Los Angeles planning commissioner Ricardo Lara has to live in the city to be on the commission. He's also raising money to run in the 50th assembly district, which is...

Jim Adenhart's pain

The father of Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart got to spend some quiet minutes at his son's locker in the Angels clubhouse Thursday morning, and some more minutes on the pitching...

Times admits to ad backlash

It has become a sadly familiar syndrome: L.A. Times ownership or management betrays readers in some new way, gets panned, then the paper reports and publicly reflects on the controversy....

Error o' the week

dnbeatlespage.jpg It's not too often you see the Beatles misidentified, but the skeleton shop that is the Daily News managed the feat on the front page of yesterday's paper. Sorry, I...

Don't look now, but LAT does it again

Times publisher Eddy Hartenstein is addressing the newsroom this afternoon about the uproar over his decision to put an NBC ad designed to look like a news story on a...

Easter hats of West Angeles

easterhats.jpg NPR staffer Karen Grigsby Bates has a nice Easter feature in this weekend's L.A. Times' Image section on church hats, focusing on the ladies who dressed for Palm Sunday services...

Scratch another Calif. political writer

In this case, Mary Anne Ostrom of the San Jose Mercury News is "Silicon Valley's top political writer," says Capitol Alert's Peter Hecht. Ostrom is joining the gubernatorial campaign of...

Eddy talked down from much worse NBC ad *

Getting some more details on the debate inside the Los Angeles Times about today's front page ad for NBC. Newsroom sources say that as of Tuesday, publisher Eddy Hartenstein had...

Angels postpone tonight's game

The team released a statement on the death of pitcher Nick Adenhart, and a statement from his family. Tonight's game was cancelled at the family's request. KPCC's Steve Julian talks...

Dan Miller, TV news anchor was 67

danmiller.jpg Dan Miller anchored at Channel 2 in the 1980s and was the sidekick on Pat Sajak's late-night show, as well as a frequent guest host for Tom Snyder on radio....

Morning Buzz: Thursday 4.9.09

The city is pondering a raise in the speed limits on some Valley streets, including a stretch of Zelzah Avenue where at least seven pedestrians have been hit in...

Nick Adenhart, Angels pitcher, killed in crash

The rookie started last night, then was among three people in a Mitsubishi who died when a red-light runner hit the car in Fullerton. Adenhart, who was 22, threw six...

LAT sells front page for 'Southland' *

nbcadgrab.jpg Los Angeles Times publisher Eddy Hartenstein's latest split with his editors (and possibly some ad people) is over his advocacy of a front-page ad for tonight's NBC debut of "Southland"...

Skyline down to one crane

dtcrane.jpg Downtown has just a single construction crane left on the job, at the Ritz-Carlton tower at L.A. Live. How's that for a sign of the recession. "In the summer of...

Save the pumpkin bread

pumpkinbread.jpg The nuns at Monastery of the Angels in Hollywood are famous for their loaves of pumpkin bread, but it seems they also know how to play the game in Los...

City Council rejects water pressure

Yes, the headline is intentional. The City Council voted 14-zip today to reject a drought surcharge on water bills for now. The vote had as much to do with the...

'Real' people in TV spot not so real

A "California doctor" and others who speak out against gay marriage in a TV spot have been busted as actors. A gay rights group got hold of the audition video...

Guy who booed at opera comes forward

That was L.A. writer Rip Rense who booed during the cheers for Achim Freyer at Saturday's opening night performance of "Die Walküre" at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. The Times' Mark...

Steve Plesa, editor at Register was 55

Over two and a half decades, Steve Plesa was the Orange County Register's features editor, cities editor and special sections editor overseeing coverage for the Food, Travel and Home &...

Supes give up their bottled water

A student worker in the Hall of Administration no longer has to peel the labels off Arrowhead water bottles and paste on generic county labels. The Board of Supervisors has...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.8.09

Wally Knox is stepping down from the city's DWP board to take the newly created position of deputy executive director of external relations at the Port of Los Angeles....

LAT Book Prizes scaled back

The annual awarding of the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes has been moved from UCLA's Royce Hall, scene of a fairly copious free dinner and open bar for authors, invited...

KCRW, other stations unhappy with NPR

KCRW general manager Ruth Seymour has written an email to longtime National Public Radio reporter and host Susan Stamberg detailing complaints about NPR cuts and fundraising, says a story in...

Amy Wallace on Peter Bart

I've been curious what Amy Wallace would have to say about Bart being kicked upstairs at Variety, nearly eight years after she profiled him in a terrific, much-talked about piece...

Ethnic media not all rosy

NPR's "Morning Edition" carried a piece today that made the point that ethnic media are faring better than more traditional newspapers, radio and TV stations. It cited Univision's KMEX and...

Who's the real Mister Los Angeles?

mrlagroup.jpg OK, this is embarrassing. Los Angeles magazine's latest web traffic gimmick is to ask readers to vote online for Mister Los Angeles. (This month the mag anointed Tom LaBonge, the...

Daily Bruin 'financial situation is grim'

Editors at UCLA's student paper "begrudgingly" ran a full-page ad for Haagen-Dazs wrapped around today's front page, and say in an editorial that it's a "regrettable but relatively unavoidable consequence...

Obama is where? *

An LA Observed reader spotted this latest headline goof on the L.A. Times website: Obama makes unexpected visit to Iran By Ned Parker, Laura King and Christi Parsons | 7:03...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 4.7.09

Mayor Villaraigosa told city unions that to avoid layoffs, workers need to defer raises, cut work hours and pay more for retirement benefits. The Times editorialized for the plan....

Muhammad Ali: This I believe

muhammadalinpr.jpg For the last installment of NPR's This I Believe series on "All Things Considered," Muhammad Ali talks about his life with the help of his wife Lonnie. Ali is now...

LA Weekly's food blog

It's called Squid Ink and it features posts by Gourmet contributor Margy Rochlin, Los Angeles food blogger Jessica Ritz and the Weekly's own Jonathan Gold making recurring appearances with his...

Here's how thinner content hurts the LAT

Writer-producer Stu Kreisman has taken the Los Angeles Times for three decades, and he knows the paper still has some top writers. But management decisions to dilute the paper got...

Pajamas Media drops ad biz

Right-of-center blogs that used Pajamas Media as their advertising service are back on their own. The L.A-based PJM is dropping its blog ads network and will focus on PJTV, its...

Sign of the (L.A.) Times: captions

odomlakers.jpg This photo ran big on the front of the Los Angeles Times Sports section today with a caption reading in part "Kobe Bryant, left...tries to shoot over the Clippers' Fred...

Morning Buzz: Monday 4.6.09

Mayor Villaraigosa has called an 11 a.m. news conference to announce steps to avert thousands of city layoffs. "The City currently faces a Fiscal Year 2009-10 deficit of $530...

Opening Day

For those of us who are baseball fans, the first day of the major league season is an unofficial holiday. To help celebrate, here's a roundup of news, previews and...

Weekend reads

L.A. Times writer Thomas Curwen's and photographer Allen J. Schaben's series on Ana Rodarte, 3½ years in the making, has award contender all over it: "Ana Rodarte had given...

New boss at Variety, Peter Bart moves upstairs

bart_peter.jpg Variety editor Tim Gray is now in charge of the news operation and Peter Bart gets a new position at the trade. "Bart has managed Variety's staff and news operations...

Blog leads to story, then to help

wrigleyfieldcard.jpg Daily News sports columnist Tom Hoffarth wrote last month on his blog about the old Wrigley Field in South Los Angeles and about the Wrigley Little League that plays now...

Backup singers update

Small update to this post from December about Ashleigh Haney, the SoCal singer who was then on tour with Rihanna. After two years the tour is over and Haney returns...

Tech advice for transitioning journalists

Former L.A. Times systems guy and news editor Brett Levy is offering free webinars for journalists to get up to speed on their tech and New Media skills. The first...

Friday desk clearing *

Los Angeles city officials are considering the immediate layoffs of 400 workers and eliminating an additional 2,800 positions in the months ahead, according to union officials. LAT A 30-year-old...

LA Observed on KCRW

kratkcrw.jpg Today's segment is called "Stupid Government Tricks" and mentions the county's odd obsession with water bottle labels, as well as the state's flirtation with banning black cars and the sales...

Laura Chick to be state inspector general

City Controller Laura Chick will be leaving her job a little sooner than scheduled. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is naming her the state's inspector general, overseeing the billions of dollars in...

Suspect arrested in fatal USC hit-and-run

I wonder if the $235,000 reward helped? More details to come at afternoon news conference. Student Adrianna Bachan, 18, was killed in the weekend incident and Marcus Garfinkle 19, was...

Morning Buzz: Friday 4.3.09

A judge has tentatively ruled that the DWP practice of shifting profits to the city general fund violates Proposition 218 and that $30 million planned for in the City...

Wilshire Boulevard's old air fields

demillefield.jpg For some reason, Los Angeles airfields used to open almost next to each other. There were three or four in and adjacent to Burbank, another in Glendale, and another on...

SurveyLA debuts on Saturday

surveyla_logo.jpg Cool event on Saturday for lovers of the city and its roots: MYhistoricLA, the public kickoff to SurveyLA, the first-ever comprehensive survey of L.A.'s historic buildings and resources. Time constraints...

Vacation time stopped at LANG papers

This could just be what it is — or it could be a hint to examine your life's plan, in the way that a small heart episode can be a...

Children's museum in Valley pondering bankruptcy

The troubled museum-in-waiting near Hansen Dam in Lake View Terrace has taken steps to file for Chapter 7 protection, at least partly due to the impact of a scam, per...

Angeles Crest no longer has truck escape

When I read about the horrible crash where Angeles Crest Highway dumps out at Foothill Boulevard in La Cañada Flintridge, I wondered if the semi-truck driver had used the sand...

More on falling pay for movie stars

It's not just the WSJ story I linked in the Morning Buzz. Kim Masters at The Daily Beast also writes today about Hollywood squeezing stars to take less money. Masters,...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 4.2.09

Ex-LAPD officer Anthony Razo was charged with lying about being shot by thugs outside his home and with setting fire to his car in a scheme to collect on...

Rating the April Fool's gags

Columbia Journalism Review rounds up the day's media hijinks, creative and not. The rating for Tribune's fake press release: "pretty lame." Really, should a bankrupt, flailing company be reminding people...

Paul Moyer retiring from Channel 4 *

paulmoyersmiling.jpg The speculation has been correct — longtime KNBC anchor Paul Moyer told the newsroom today that he's hanging them up after being on L.A. television since 1972. (He jumped to...

Full release on KTLA's fortified news schedule

Here's what Channel 5 has to say about the new shows and hours. 'News at 1' begins today....

Times corrects on Presbyterian 'priests' *

In today's printed paper, the L.A. Times acknowledges its mistake (see Tomorrow's correction today?) in saying that a lesbian sought to become a priest of the Presbyterian church. "The church...

A little Yvonne Burke joke *

A local journo wonders in email if the new Yvonne Brathwaite Burke Park in Marina del Rey, near where the retired county Supervisor used to claim she lived, will have...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.1.09

More than 400 judges in Los Angeles County make more than the chief justice of the U.S. AP Bob Hertzberg is back in Sacramento reinvented as a government reformer,...

Director calls Nikki Finke the problem with journalism

Writer-director and ex-journalist Rod Lurie uses a second bad experience with Nikki Finke's reporting to go off on a rant about the dangers of bloggers posting inaccurate stories, usually without...

Editor change in Inland Empire

Chuck Mindenhall bids adieu as editor-in-chief of the Inland Empire Weekly: "It's just that me and the IE are fed up with each other." Roberto Hernandez comes to bat next....
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
Streetscape | Virgil Avenue
homeless-virgil-avenue.jpgHomeless encampment beside the Hollywood Freeway on Saturday. Bigger