LA Observed archive
for June 2009

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

Eater LA assailed over blind post *

The food blog owned by the Curbed chain ran a litany of damaging, specific accusations against Downtown wine bar The Must attributed to an unidentified "tipster." The owners, talking to...

Principal, coach disciplined over Bruno

brunobham.jpg LAUSD chief Ramon Cortines said he was taking "appropriate personnel action" against the principal and athletic director of Birmingham High School for letting Sacha Baron Cohen (as gay character "Bruno")...

Kobe won't opt out of Lakers contract

Bryant is expected to sign a three-year extension some time in July, the L.A. Times says, based on "a source close to Bryant."...

Report: Henry Waxman taken to hospital

Just passing this along, but the source — Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo — isn't known to go off half-cocked. Marshall posts tonight that Rep. Henry Waxman was taken...

Inventing Little Italy

littleitalysign.jpg At the Los Angeles Historic Italian Hall Foundation's "Taste Of Italy" on Saturday night at Pico House, Councilman Tom LaBonge brought a prototype district sign for "Little Italy." The start...

Historical street trees

lassenolives.jpg The City of Los Angeles loves to designate historic-cultural monuments, from pallets stacked in an eccentric guy's backyard in Van Nuys (since thrown away) to actual significant buildings. Even street...

Amanda gets married

amandacongdonscreen.jpg Westside Internet impresario (impresaria?) Amanda Congdon was married over the weekend to Mario Librandi. She produces and hosts Sometimes Daily on the web. In this episode, she skateboards to the...

Speaking of the Coliseum torch

la84logo.jpg There's a big event July 18 at the Coliseum to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the last Olympic Games held in Los Angeles. This is the logo that has been...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 6.30.09

Registerletter62909.pdf California's $24 billion budget deficit is bigger than the budgets of some states, and Sacramento looks no closer to resolving the problem as IOUs are prepared. Rough & Tumble...

Rave under Olympic torch

coliseumtorchressler.jpg They lit the torch at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for this weekend's Electric Daisy Carnival. Nice photo, and a lot more where that came from, courtesy of Drew Ressler....

Fox News reporter in L.A. hit by car *

"Minutes after our 10pm liveshot, FOX News Channel Correspondent Craig Boswell was the victim of a hit & run," Fox 11's Hal Eisner reported on Twitter about half an hour...

More doubt on Nikki Finke's millions

Sharon Waxman's report that Nikki Finke inked a $14 million deal to sell Deadline Hollywood Daily has yet to be confirmed by anyone on the record, and Finke declines comment...

Valedictorian allowed to speak after all

Officials at the Accelerated School let Aurora Ponce speak at Saturday's graduation ceremony after first barring her over a protest she took part in. Two hours of negotiations on Friday...

Two more weeks for LAPD order

U.S. District Judge Gary Feess today extended the consent decree under which he oversees the Los Angeles Police Department until July 15, saying he needs more time to review filings...

Bruno and the Birmingham High kids

brunobham.jpg As part of the promotion for the new Sacha Baron Cohen movie Bruno, GQ magazine runs photos of Cohen-as-Bruno cavorting on the field with the football team at Birmingham High...

New LA Weekly editor: Drex Heikes

After the Las Vegas Sun won a Pulitzer prize in April, I kept getting messages tipping me that ex-Los Angeles Times Magazine editor Drex Heikes was making good things happen...

Anschutz's media moves

L.A.'s most important absentee billionaire, Phillip Anschutz, is "quietly building a small empire of social-networking sites, newspapers and now a leading conservative weekly," says a piece in Forbes. Jim Monaghan,...

Spotted around town: Jackson tributes

jacksonalcorn.jpg Photojournalist Jonathan Alcorn chronicles the scene on Hayvenhurst Avenue in Encino: And the photo blog East of West L.A. catches a marquee in Downtown:...

Morning Buzz: Monday 6.29.09

Assembly Democrats passed a budget package Sunday night without Republican votes. A veto by the governor is expected. LAT, Bee, Register Decisions by the U.S. 9th Circuit were overturned...

Draw on Dana Goodyear's website

Move your cursor around and create some art on the site of poet and Los Angeles-based New Yorker staff writer Dana Goodyear....

Hahn swears in Hahn

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James K. Hahn — yes, the former mayor — did the honors yesterday as his younger sister, Janice Hahn, took the oath of office for...

Donovan puts U.S. up 2-0 in South Africa *

The L.A. Galaxy's star Landon Donovan just put the American team up 2-nil over Brazil in the FIFA Confederations Cup final in South Africa. They have played just over 33...

Sylvia Levin, 91, registered 47,000 voters

Levin was a familiar sight around the Westside signing up voters — which Bob Pool at the Times says she did six days a week for 36 years. Levin's son...

An African perspective on Michael Jackson

zeleza.jpg Paul Tiyambe Zeleza takes over August 1 as the dean of the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts at Loyola Marymount University. He's also the editor of The Zeleza Post and...

Downtown leads restaurant design awards

Bottega Louie, Chaya Downtown and The Conga Room won jury prizes at tonight's AIA/LA restaurant design awards that are part of the Dwell on Design event this weekend. The Lab...

LA Weekly collects 4 alt weekly awards

The local winners at the Alt Weekly Awards held in Tucson were art director Darrick Rainey, editor Laurie Ochoa and the LA Weekly staff for the LA People 2008 issue,...

More L.A. geography tricks

It wasn't just the L.A. Times that didn't know where to place Michael Jackson at first. Jonathan Dobrer, a Friendly Fire blogger for the Daily News opinion pages, posts his...

Big layoffs at KTTV Fox 11

They're still coming down, over 99 by one source's unofficial count — in all newsroom departments. "Editors, writers, shooters, promo people, our chief helicopter guy, the entire chyron department, most...

Jackson good for L.A. Times numbers

TMZ may have won the breaking news competition, but the Los Angeles Times is happy with the web traffic brought in by Michael Jackson's death. It's a new record for...

Hilburn on Michael Jackson

Robert Hilburn, the former L.A. Times pop music critic, lives not far from the Jackson family compound in Encino and knew Michael — and wrote about his music — for...

TMZ's win on Jackson

While mainstream news outlets played it cautious and lagged behind on Michael Jackson, or flopped around online as the L.A. Times did, it was upstart TMZ that displayed the best...

New politics blog *

Well, let's call it partly politics and partly law enforcement, with some union advocacy for seasoning. It's the new blog of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, which posts today...

LA Sketchbook: Michael Jackson

sgMichaelJacksonobit.jpg See more by Steve Greenberg in the LA Sketchbook archive....

Morning Buzz: Friday 6.26.09

Today's Michael Jackson mourners in Hollywood are able to get to his actual Walk of Fame star instead of radio host Jackson's star, where they gathered yesterday. Gatherings also...

Los Angeles history bits

The Orange Line busway extension from Woodland Hills to Chatsworth will follow the route of old Southern Pacific railroad tracks that crossed the Valley starting in 1888. The trains carried...

A White House Fellow from L.A.

Anish Mahajan, 34, a member of the Mid City West Community Council, was selected for the 2009-10 class of White House fellows. He's the only Indian American in the group....

Michael Jackson, pop culture icon was 50

Jackson died this afternoon at UCLA Medical Center after suffering cardiac arrest at home in Holmby Hills, the Los Angeles Times and TMZ are reporting. Jackson is survived by his...

Michael Jackson suffers cardiac arrest *

TMZ and others are reporting that performer Michael Jackson has been taken to UCLA Medical Center in cardiac arrest. The 911 call came in at Jackson's Holmby Hills home at...

LA Sketchbook: Oscar snorecard

sgOscar10.jpg News item: Oscar keepers expand best picture category to ten in desperate attempt to hook audience. See more Steve Greenberg cartoons in the LA Sketchbook archive....

Don't invite 'em: Kobe and Antonio?

Wave columnist Betty Pleasant writes there was a dust-up at the Lakers victory parade when star Kobe Bryant refused to ride with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. She says: The cause of...

Farrah Fawcett, actress was 62

Farrah Fawcett died at 9:28 AM at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, according to TMZ. Ryan O'Neal and Alana Stewart were at her bedside....

Morning Buzz: Thursday 6.25.09

State budget talks go nowhere again, so the state may soon have to issue IOUs instead of checks to the people it owes. Rough & Tumble roundup, Which Way,...

Oscar dilution reaction

Getting nominated for a best picture Oscar won't mean quite as much now that the motion picture academy has returned to ten nominations in the category. And the winner will...

Anti-gang leader indicted

A three-year federal investigation into the Mara Salvatrucha gang's activities near Lafayette Park produced a bunch of indictments unsealed today, including that of Alex Sanchez, executive director of Homies Unidos....

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 6.24.09

The Democrats' latest budget plan in Sacramento appears to be dead on arrival. Rough & Tumble Kudos to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for having the guts to enter...

Billboards of the '50s and '60s

leonardbillboardtimes.jpg Photographer Gary Leonard has what looks to be a very cool exhibit up in his Broadway gallery: prints made from Kodachrome slides he saved from the trash showing Pacific Outdoor...

Michelle Obama easy to forget

First Lady Michelle Obama on Saturday urged the first full graduating class at UC Merced to help solve society's problems with the same creativity and persistence they showed in wooing her to be their commencement speaker and in pioneering the 4-year-old campus in the San Joaquin Valley.

LA Sketchbook: Antonio sings

sgAntonioSings.jpg Take a look at more Steve Greenberg cartoons in the LA Sketchbook archive. Click on any cartoon to view it bigger....

Spector sent to 'sensitive needs' unit

spectorprisonmug.jpg Convicted killer Phil Spector was moved Monday to the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison at Corcoran, in the San Joaquin Valley near Fresno. It's the state's largest...

Luc Robitaille called to the hall

lucwithcrowd.jpg The L.A. Kings' all-time leading scorer, and the NHL's highest-scoring left winger ever, was elected today to the sport's hall of fame. Robitaille, now the Kings' president of business operations,...

Greenberg meets the chief

bratton-and-steve.jpg After Steve Greenberg's LA Sketchbook cartoon suggested a Parker Center naming compromise last month, he heard from the LAPD headquarters that chief William Bratton would enjoy a copy. One thing...

Weekly seeking Finke replacement

The LA Weekly's parent company congratulated Nikki Finke on being acquired (for $14 million apparently) and blogs that it wants to find another online Hollywood reporter. "We've had a great...

Inside local TV news

Fox 11 anchor-reporter Susan Hirasuna is a busy Twitter user. She just posted regarding what you'll see on tonight's news: Just finished editorial meeting for the 10p &11p news. Tribute...

Rocky beats Chick on audits

A judge has ruled that the Los Angeles city controller does not have the powers to conduct performance audits of the other elected city officials, siding with City Attorney Rocky...

Nikki Finke's site acquired *

Deadline Hollywood Daily was bought by Mail.com Media Corporation (MMC), which operates Mail.com, HollywoodLife.com, MovieLine.com and OnCars.com. From the company's announcement on her site: MMC also begins a long-term partnership...

Villaraigosa tweets the news...late *

A few minutes ago, at 6:30, Mayor Villaraigosa's Twitter feed came alive: villaraigosa Today I announced that I will not be running for gov of CA. LA needs a leader...

Lopez skewers mayor

Steve Lopez had a column ready for the LAT website on Mayor Villaraigosa giving up his dreams of living in the governor's suburban estate. Of course L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa...

L.A. Times profiles Neda *

nedaaghasoltan.jpg Borzou Daragahi reports out a very good story in the Los Angeles Times on Neda Agha-Soltan, who was 26 when she was gunned down Saturday on a street in Tehran...

Gavin Newsom statement

The mayor of San Francisco would very much like to have the endorsement of the mayor of Los Angeles. Newsom sends out this reaction to Villaraigosa dropping out: As a...

Brown pleads guilty, avoids jail

Singer Chris Brown will have to do community labor and five years probation, stay away from Rihanna, give up a DNA sample and other steps in exchange for deal that...

Villaraigosa not running *

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa blows off locals and goes to CNN's Wolf Blitzer for his announcement a minute ago that he will not run for governor. Good call, though it makes...

LA Sketchbook: LA back in LAPD

sgLAPD-approval.jpg Steve Greenberg was inspired by today's Los Angeles Times Poll story showing higher approval ratings for the LAPD. See more by Greenberg in LA Sketchbook....

Neda Agha-Soltan *

nedaaghasoltan.jpg The photo is apparently of the 27-year-old 26-year-old woman shot and killed in Iran on the video reverberating around the world. There's also a photo of a gravesite on BBC...

Essel names campaign team

Per Rick Orlov, City Council candidate Christine Essel will go with John Shallman as consultant, Tom Berman as campaign manager and John Fairbank and Jonathan Brown of Fairbank Maslin Maullin...

Kodachrome no more

The Eastman Kodak Co. announced today that it's retiring Kodachrome, the world's first commercially successful color film, after 74 years. Declining demand in a digital age. Huffington Post Regarding Huff...

Morning Buzz: Monday 6.22.09

Mayor Villaraigosa plans to appear on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer" at 1 p.m. PDT and make some kind of statement about his plans on running for...

'Moneyball' benched

For some reason Sony agreed to make a movie out of the Michael Lewis baseball bestseller "Moneyball." Brad Pitt got on board, crews were hired, shooting was to begin today...

Musical rich kids

Sunday's New York Times Style section attended a backyard music festival of L.A. trust fund children and spots a trend. Excerpts: Behind a sprawling home in Encino, a grassy Los...

Iran admits vote irregularities

Authorities in Iran "acknowledged that the number of votes cast in 50 cities exceeded the actual number of voters, state television reported Monday following assertions by the country’s supreme leader...

Laura Ling interview, 2005

The video is an interview from 2005 of Laura Ling, one of the Current TV journalists from Los Angeles being held in North Korea. The interviewer was Los Angeles...

If you watch one Iran video

From BBC Persian, protesters throw tear gas cannisters back at police then send them running. Raw: Video Ten other "significant" Iran videos via Boing Boing Added but extremely graphic: If...

24 journalists & bloggers arrested in Iran *

tehranlifephotog.jpg Life magazine says the Iranian photographer who submitted this photo of protests in Tehran is now missing and probably arrested. Here is a gallery of the photographer's work with...

Steve Jobs got liver transplant

The Apple chief executive received the new liver secretly in Tennessee about two months ago, the Wall Street Journal reports tonight. He has been on medical leave since January to...

Friday desk-clearing

Freeways are uncommonly bad out there today, especially the 405 north due to truck crash in Sepulveda Pass. Incoming councilman Paul Koretz signed his chief of staff: Rich Llewellyn,...

Twitter, the books

A nice local book deal: Penguin picked up "Twitterature: The World's Greatest Books, Now Presented in Twenty Tweets or Less," called a humorous retelling of works of great literature in...

L.A. is trendy in Paris

The French department store Le Bon Marche is featuring items that subtly suggest Los Angeles, but I guess you have to be there. Laurie Pike at The Chic Leak blog...

Stewart replies to Rainey

While I was out, Jill Stewart defended her work at the LA Weekly that was panned this morning by Times media writer James Rainey. Stewart's email response was posted by...

Rainey finally mulls LA Weekly

L.A. Times media writer James Rainey has not previously talked about the transformation of the LA Weekly from lefty cultural organ known for hard-hitting pieces into pursuer of Jill Stewart's...

Some big houses for sale

dykstrahome.jpg Frank Lloyd Wright's Ennis House in Los Feliz (for $15 million, by the foundation that owns it) and the estate built for Wayne Gretzky in the Lake Sherwood area of...

Photo evidence: Bruins swarm freeway

uclastudentson405.jpg My mention last night of UCLA students protesting a Rose Bowl snub on the San Diego Freeway in 1966 prompted an LA Observed reader to remember a photo he'd seen...

Morning Buzz: Friday 6.19.09

An audit found that L.A. County pays $1.5 million a year for 8,000 unused phone lines — and the audit is only half done. LAT Mayor Villaraigosa is Intellectually...

Nic Fiore, Yosemite icon was 88

nicfiore.jpg Nic Fiore taught skiing at Badger Pass in Yosemite National Park for more than 50 years, but Scott McAuley of Angel City Press remembers his friend as the summer impresario...

Mariachi maven via Cuba

Patricia Marroquin at Hispanic Business profiles Rodri Rodriguez, the Cuban-born creator of the annual Mariachi USA festival that returns Saturday to the Hollywood Bowl for the 20th time. While it...

Freeways as protest locations

After my observation the other day that the freeways have come into play as spots for protesting pedestrians to swarm, a reader pointed out this article saying the practice has...

X off another LAT foreign reporter

Paul Watson is still listed on the Los Angeles Times staff roster as the paper's man in Jakarta, but he's headed to the Toronto Star. Note to the staff there:...

Cortines trying to save UTLA 'from itself'

cortineslamag.jpg LAUSD Supt. Ramon Cortines spoke to friends of Los Angeles Magazine at breakfast this morning and called out the teachers union, which had plans to demonstrate at his home this...

Last of the coastal resorts?

Terranea, which opened last week on the old Marineland site in Rancho Palos Verdes, and the Resort at Pelican Hill near Newport Beach may be the last big resort compounds...

W's Persian conquest

persiansw.jpg W's West Coast Editor Kevin West reports in the upcoming issue on what the magazine calls the Persian Conquest of Beverly Hills: Three decades ago, in the wake of...

Be careful who and how you fire

In a Huffington Post entry about firing and being fired, once-axed LA Weekly publisher Michael Sigman shares a couple of anecdotes about the perils of being the one doing the...

LA Sketchbook: Finishing school

sgFinishSentence.jpg The mess in Sacramento is so bad that Steve Greenberg helps them finish their sentences. See more of LA Sketchbook by Greenberg in the archive. Click the cartoon to...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 6.18.09

Gov. Schwarzenegger won't defend Prop. 8 in court, meaning no state official will carry that particular hot potato. LAT Another farewell to 20th Century Props in the Valley, this...

Corpse flower blooms at Huntington

The smell of rotting flesh is wafting again at the Huntington Library's tropical conservatory in San Marino. Star-News: After keeping botanists on tenterhooks for more than two weeks, the giant...

Special Order 40 upheld

A three-judge panel of the state Court of Appeal agreed with a lower court’s decision to throw out a lawsuit that argued the LAPD policy violated federal and state laws....

Anschutz takes control of Weekly Standard

Staples Center owner Phil Anschutz's Clarity Media Group closed the deal to buy the conservative mag from Rupert Murdoch. Here's a report in Anschutz's Washington Examiner, via Romemesko....

Lakers a hit

arizaalcorn.jpg The Times goes with 150,000 along the parade route and 80,000 in the Coliseum, where many were turned away. City News Service goes with 90,000 in the Coliseum and avoids...

L.A.'s Woodstock, 40 years later

newport69poster.jpg This weekend is the 40th anniversary of Newport '69, the first — and last — ginormous rock festival to be staged within a leafy Los Angeles suburb. On June 20,...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 6.17.09

Parade info from Lakers: Gates open at the Coliseum at 9:30 a.m. and "as space is limited to the first 95,000 fans, guests are encouraged to arrive early." Scheduled...

News as endangered species

pomonacollegecover.jpg The current issue of Pomona College Magazine examines the future of news, drawing on journalist alums: Bill Keller, executive editor of the New York Times; Richard Pérez-Peña, who covers newspapers...

99 Cents Only opts for safe

The 99-cent store's newspaper ads today divide possible Father's Day gifts into two categories: Good Choice and Bad Choice. In the former are ties, belts, socks — and condoms. In...

Parade costs covered

Big political giver Jerry Perenchio, Casey Wasserman and other donors as yet undisclosed have answered Mayor Villaraigosa's call to help pay for the city's share of the Lakers parade costs....

Maher & Huffington at Press Club awards

Bill Maher's talk at Sunday night's L.A. Press Club awards dinner. Here, by the way, is the list of winners, which included the Bloomberg News bureau's David Evans, who won...

Trutanich teams

TrutanichTeam.pdf Here's the Trutanich transition's roster of working groups that will look into the operations of the City Attorney's office. TrutanichTeam.pdf...

Laird Hamilton on the water

lairdhamiltonhim.jpg Out at Paradise Cove yesterday, Veronique de Turenne watched Laird Hamilton paddle across the cove and ride a few waves. More at Here in Malibu....

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 6.16.09

The City Council cancelled its Wednesday session to allow members to attend the Lakers parade. City Clerk L.A., area designers took some big honors at last night's Council of...

Follow the bouncing blog

Sorry about that. LA Observed has been down a couple of times today, then it was up for awhile when both Mark and I were posting but the new entries...

LA Sketchbook: UnShaqkled

sgLakersUnshaq.jpg See more LA Sketchbook by Steve Greenberg in the archive. Click any cartoon to view bigger. The Lakers title is all about Kobe Bryant, says Phil Wallace at Native...

Feess urged to drop consent decree

Attorneys for the city of Los Angeles and the U.S. Department of Justice jointly asked U.S. District Judge Gary A. Feess today to drop the requirement that the LAPD submit...

Morning Buzz: Monday 6.15.09

Five officers were injured and at least 25 suspects were arrested during the unruliness and looting in Downtown that followed the Lakers win. L.A. Now, DN wires, last night...

Prince William house-looking in Malibu

Britain's Prince William, 27, and his girlfriend Kate Middleton were spotted looking at a house in Malibu that was listed for about $8 million, according to Ruth Ryon at Real...

From TV Week to the web

Josef Adalian, the television editor at Variety for nine years until jumping last year to TV Week as deputy editor, is moving again. This time he is going to The...

Bratton: Just a few 'knuckleheads'

LAPD chief William Bratton, speaking just now on Fox 11, said officers are trying to clear out the last groups still hanging around Downtown. He says there have been five...

List of Press Club winners

At tonight's Los Angeles Press Club awards dinner, the L.A. Times and KPCC came away with seven winners each and the LA Weekly had six — three of them named...

Hells Angels of City Hall?

newsomrockymav.jpg Los Angeles City Council members Dennis Zine and Jan Perry and City Attorney-elect Carmen Trutanich riding in Sunday's L.A. Pride Parade. Below, San Francisco's Gavin Newsom and Antonio Villaraigosa...

Scene outside Staples

Looks like over a thousand people are gathered in the Staples Center neighborhood right now, with some small fires being set in the street and quickly extinguished — including of...

Lakers get it done

99-86 final. Lakers are NBA champs in 5 games. Phil Jackson has the most trophies of any NBA coach....

Sunday media tweets, Lakers edition *

J. A. Adande Lacy J. Banks in the house for Game 5! Kareem Abdul-Jabbar I think Lakers will rise to the occasion. Lu Parker Go Lakers! Lots of game anticipation...

Protesting Ahmadinejad

iraniansalcorn2.jpg Local Iranian-Americans demonstrated today against the election results and ensuing violence in Tehran, in the usual spot outside the federal building on Wilshire Boulevard in Westwood. Jonathan Alcorn has...

NBC to acquire football fan website

Mike Florio, the fan who started Profootballtalk.com eight years ago, hits it big. NBC will announce Monday that is acquiring rights to PFT's content and will run it at the...

Tuition help for Cali vets: $0

Due to a snafu in the new Post- 9/11 GI Bill, California veterans won't get the aid for private colleges that vets in other states do. That's because, officially, the...

Gustavo meets Benicio del Toro

deltorogustavo.jpg For reasons only he can adequately explain, OC Weekly writer, author and "Ask a Mexican" creator Gustavo Arellano was on the red carpet asking questions of stars at this week's...

Famous spot on Ventura Boulevard

News reports of a Crips gang party in Studio City on Wednesday night made me smile, if only because of the location. The stories gave the club's name as Platinum...

Friday desk clearing

Channel 5 had Stan Chambers throw the switch to change over to digital TV, making the point that he worked at the station for the entire analog era. Video...

More L.A. Times ad tricks *

lattrueblood.jpg Today's print edition of the Los Angeles Times was wrapped in an ad for the HBO series "True Blood" — an ad page that included the Times' regular flag and...

Follow LA Observed on Twitter

Couple of deadlines looming so posting here will be light until later today. But I have sent a few local media updates over on the Twitter channel. Mark's morning headlines...

Ling's resume impressive

lauralingeunalee.jpg Reporter Laura Ling is "unassuming, inquisitive and fearless...fearless, but not reckless," says a San Francisco Chronicle story about Ling and Euna Lee, the Los Angeles journalists held in North Korea....

Sheryl Flowers, radio producer was 42

Sheryl Flowers was the executive producer of Tavis Smiley's shows on National Public Radio and Public Radio International and his Director of Communications. "When I left NPR, Sheryl was the...

African American sites registered

Seven Los Angeles buildings considered important in African American history — including three designed by architect Paul Williams — have been added to the National Register of Historic Places. They...

Rep. Richardson's house back in the news

The Sacramento home owned by Rep. Laura Richardson of Long Beach gets her more ink than anything she has done in Congress. This time, the L.A. Times revisits the situation...

At least 22 HIV cases in porn, county says

Info released today by county public health officials indicates there have been 22 positive HIV tests of porn performers since a scare shut down the adult video biz for a...

Lakers pull it out 99-91

Kobe misses everything at the end of the fourth, but Derek Fisher saves the day and the Lakers go on to win game 4 in overtime. They're up 3-1 in...

Afternoon news and notes

The L.A. Times was forced to run a correction because Michael Douglas forgot that he hosted a 1991 event honoring his father, Kirk Douglas. The anonymous blogger known as...

Love those salary lists *

The Wrap has gotten hold of a memo listing the salaries and stock of top agents at William Morris. From Sharon Waxman's post: Who knows why John Fogelman, until about...

Venice parking permits rejected

The state Coastal Commission reportedly just turned down the City of Los Angeles application to create permit parking districts near the beach in Venice. The vote was 9 - 1...

Return of the LAO Script Project

Eric Estrin is hard at work revising and polishing Right of Way, the noir thriller featuring an ambitious, subway-craving Los Angeles mayor written last year by LA Observed readers in...

LA Sketchbook: SAG conflict

sgSAGtoon.jpg The art of the local editorial cartoon is alive and well at LA Observed, compliments of Steve Greenberg. Find him here most days. Yesterday's LA Sketchbook — Back to...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 6.11.09

Conan O'Brien has lost viewers each night since his debut, and on Tuesday David Letterman won the ratings. LAT, Variety Twentieth Century Props, the entertainment industry's second-oldest prop house,...

Add one digger, take one away

The Center for Investigative Reporting named the editorial director for its new reporting initiative focusing on California: Mark Katches, the former editor who oversaw prize-winning investigations at the Register in...

Tracking our mountain lions

dead_mountain_lion1.jpg Zach Behrens at LAist has gotten together a map showing the overlapping ranges claimed by the seven mountain lions believed to still inhabit the Santa Monicas, Santa Susanas and Simi...

'Handful' of adult actors exposed to HIV

A female adult industry performer has tested positive for HIV and a "handful" of her partners are under industry quarantine for testing, XBIZ reports. So far they have tested negative....

Friends talk about Laura Ling & Euna Lee

lauralingeunalee.jpg Nice story for tomorrow's L.A. Times talking to co-workers and friends of Laura Ling and Euna Lee, and especially nice to see the Times finally acknowledge that it's a...

Phil Spector's prison mug shots

spectorprisonmugs.jpg Former music producer Phil Spector's new home is North Kern State Prison in Delano — known in prison system jargon as NKSP. His stay may be temporary, as NKSP...

Dodgers warned about Manny

That little impromptu Manny Ramirez media op in the clubhouse yesterday got the Dodgers in trouble with the baseball home office. The team was warned — without a fine —...

Miss California out after all

Just a month after Donald Trump ruled that Carrie Prejean could keep her title despite giving her views on same-sex marriage, she's been dethroned as Miss California after all. The...

LA Sketchbook: Back to the future

sgBack2Future.jpg The art of the local editorial cartoon is alive and well at LA Observed, compliments of Steve Greenberg. Find him here most days. Mark Lacter has the news item...

LAPD cops play soccer too hard

When I played in a roller hockey league in the Valley, there was a team of deputy sheriffs that always started fights and played out of control — worst in...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 6.10.09

Phil Anschutz is said to be close to a deal with News Corp. to buy the conservative Weekly Standard. LAT Numero Uno grocery magnate George Torres was released from...

Tales of the LA Weekly

Michael Sigman, the LA Weekly's former publisher, blogs at the Huffington Post that the paper was wrong to "part ways" with editor Laurie Ochoa. Sigman had originally hired her. His...

Job description of today's reporter

The job skills and responsibilities sought in a new county government reporter for the Register in Orange County could be a template for how out-of-work journalists should market themselves these...

Daily Breeze interim publisher

With publisher Mark Ficarra headed to San Diego, Breeze editor Phillip Sanfield will fill in as interim publisher. Newsroom note from the new president of the Los Angeles Newspaper Group...

Maya Rudolph, up close

mayarudolph.jpg I enjoyed "Away We Go" over the weekend and left thinking Maya Rudolph's performance was Oscar nomination worthy. So I was pleased to see Los Angeles magazine post a mini-profile...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 6.9.09

Transportation officials are considering congestion pricing of 25 cents to $1.40 per mile for solo motorists who use high-occupancy lanes on the San Bernardino and Harbor freeways. LAT, Metro,...

Whale hanging out in Marina del Rey

whalemdr.JPG The young migrating gray whale is spending much of its time in the main Marina del Rey channel. KABC's Michael Linder says you can often spot the whale from the...

Pointing finger at LAPD

The father of Sherri Rae Rasmussen, the victim of the 1986 murder that the LAPD now says was committed by one of its officers, says he told detectives repeatedly about...

Al Martinez now in Daily News

almtzdn.jpg The longtime columnist who was squeezed out of the Los Angeles Times (again) this year now runs in the Daily News. Martinez's debut DN column is about his daughters, one...

US Bank Tower eases a bit on photos

In the ongoing contest of wills between photographers and the owners of Los Angeles' tallest skyscraper, the picture takers report some progress. The guards who try to block pictures of...

Burning Weetzie

babybebop.jpg Studio City author Francesca Lia Block has hit a small PR jackpot. Some overheated Christians in West Bend, Wisconsin want to publicly burn her novel "Baby Be-Bop." They also want...

LA Sketchbook: Holey safety net

sgSafetyNet.jpg Click on cartoon to see bigger. More LA Sketchbooks by Steve Greenberg...

Smogtown panel Tuesday night

smogtownicon.jpg I'm moderating Tuesday night's Aloud LA lecture series panel at the Central Library pegged to the book "Smogtown: The Lung-Burning History of Pollution in Los Angeles," by Chip Jacobs and...

Clinton calls for humanitarian release

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, taking questions at a photo op with the foreign minister of Indonesia, just said the United States is committed to winning the release of Euna...

Nice L.A. custom search

You can now search the websites of Los Angeles County and all of the cities in the county simultaneously, using this custom Google search by Matthew Barrett of the MTA's...

Urban Scrawl: Apply to be a TV reporter

urbanscrawltvreporter.jpg Doug Davis, whose Urban Scrawl cartoons run in the Downtown News, envisions the damage done to the image of Los Angeles television reporters by Lu Parker turning up as...

Morning Buzz: Monday 6.8.09

All of Rocky Delgadillo's senior aides have been placed on tenure tracks that will make it hard for incoming city attorney Carmen Trutanich to replace them. Among the aides...

Obama 'deeply concerned' about sentences

lauralingeunalee.jpg The White House reacted Monday to the sentencing of Laura Ling and Euna Lee, with spokesman Bill Burton telling reporters "the president is deeply concerned by the reported sentencing of...

Local media transitions

Mark Ficarra is stepping down as publisher of the Daily Breeze to become a VP at the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Register has lost investigative reporter Norberto Santana Jr. and...

Laura Ling and Euna Lee: 12-year sentences*

lauralingeunalee.jpg News out of North Korea tonight: Los Angeles journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were convicted in last week's trial and sentenced to 12 years "reform through labor" each...

Ex-Daily News home available for filming

The offices in Woodland Hills that the Daily News gave up last year are being offered as a filming location. Previously on LA Observed: For lease: one newsroom Daily News...

Sam Zell might lose control of Tribune

Intriguing story out of the Chicago Tribune (via Romenesko) says that negotiations with big creditors of the bankrupt Tribune Company could lead to chairman Sam Zell losing his role. Details...

Lakers go up 2-0

Phew, it took an overtime period but the Lakers took game two, 101-96. Series moves to Orlando for as many as three games, starting Tuesday night....

Cadiz water project is alive

You remember Cadiz — that was the venture to bank water beneath the distant Mojave Desert, then pipe it into urban Southern California, envisioned by Friend-of-Antonio (and many other Democrats)...

LA Observed on KCRW

When you're woken up by a downpour in June, the same week that Los Angeles imposes mandatory water cutbacks, the subject of today's commentary became almost a no-brainer. It airs...

Moves and a hire at Los Angeles

Matt Segal moves up to executive editor at Los Angeles magazine (from features editor) and Richard E. Meyer becomes articles editor. Amy Wallace is returning to the magazine as editor-at-large....

LA Sketchbook: Pot clinic on every corner

sgPot_Clinics_toon.jpg Call me crazy, but I'm thinking that Steve Greenberg isn't persuaded that all the marijuana dispensaries around town are medically necessary. Catch more Greenberg cartoons in the LA Sketchbook...

LAPD detective booked: suspicion of murder

Stephanie Ilene Lazarus, 49, was arrested this morning at Parker Center. Cold case investigation into the 1986 beating death of the wife of her ex-boyfriend led to Lazarus, and her...

Carpetbagger alert

State assemblyman Paul Krekorian, whose district centers on Burbank, is renting an apartment in the 2nd Los Angeles city council district while he ponders whether to run for the open...

Susan Atkins gets a parole hearing

Coming up on 40 years since the Sharon Tate murders in Benedict Canyon, any mention of the Charles Manson family still generates a predictable surge of traffic on this website...

Mrs. Spector goes to lunch

Rachelle Spector, the wife of jailed killer Phil Spector, broke her media silence about the case over lunch at the Beverly Hills Hotel with L.A. Times celebrity justice reporter Harriet...

Lucky market returns

A few readers have emailed in the last couple of days wondering about the Lucky market that re-appeared at Van Nuys and Sherman Way in the Valley, taking over an...

Beware of Gridskipper, says blogger

Former Gridskipper contributor Katherine Spiers, who has a new food blog, alleges that the dates on Gridskipper posts for travelers to Los Angeles are bogus. Lots of people think I...

Lakers make it look easy

They take game one in a romp, 100-75. Kobe Bryant scored 40 points, his personal high in the NBA finals. Kareem on Twitter: "Tonight the Magic starred in 'Lost.'"...

LA Sketchbook: Ground zero

sgGroundzero.jpg Click to view bigger. More by Steve Greenberg...

Mr. South Bay opinion leaves

Mike Carroll has ben the editorial page editor at the South Bay Daily Breeze for 17 years. He's relocating to Canada. Newsroom note from editor Phillip Sanfield is after the...

Laura Ling & Euna Lee vigil photos

lisalingelizkim.jpg Found some nice photos from last night's Santa Monica vigil in support of the Los Angeles reporters for Current TV who went on trial today in North Korea. They...

Britain still loves Bratton

This time, the Queen of England is preparing to honor Los Angeles Police Department chief William Bratton with the title of "commander of the most excellent order of the British...

JPL scientists win a round on privacy

A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal has sided with Jet Propulsion Lab scientists who are resisting a government requirement that they detail past and present financial...

Rosendahl thinking big

Westside city councilman Bill Rosendahl admits that he is actively considering a run for the U.S. Senate if Dianne Feinstein steps down in 2012. This even though, as the LA...

Reporters' trial said to begin

lisaling6309.jpg North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said in a brief dispatch today that the trial of Los Angeles journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee would begin at 3 p.m....

Getty parking: free at night

The Getty just formally announced its hike to $15 per vehicle to park at the museum or the villa, but parking will be free at both locations for evening events...

Daily News to Antonio: Don't do it

An editorial in the Daily News says the prospect of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa running for governor with the city in deep financial crisis is a no-win situation. He should not...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 6.4.09

Cardinal Mahony wagers a case of wine on the Lakers, a councilman resigns in disgrace, David Carradine is found hanged and more, including the local gay Asian-American mayor. Mark Lacter's...

Trade down: Radio & Records

The music industry publication shut down today, costing thirty jobs says The Wrap. Visitors to the website are re-directed to Billboard.biz. Also, The Hollywood Reporter eliminates another ten positions, including...

Times pushes new Conan fluff

conanonLAT.jpg Just got a few emails observing with raised eyebrows that the top of the L.A. Times web home right now is devoted to a fluff piece on Conan O'Brien's second...

Orlov bunks rumors

Can't call it a debunking exactly, but Rick Orlov gets denials all around on the Jack Weiss to get $200,000 as homeland security deputy for the mayor meme. Same on...

Miscikowski named to harbor commission

Mayor Villaraigosa put forth Cindy Miscikowski, the former City Council member from Brentwood, for the port commission spot vacated by S. David Freeman. Release after the jump. Also at City...

Berg exits Daily Journal

It's not entirely clear to me who's leaving who here, but this much I know. Martin Berg, who was replaced abruptly last December as editor of the Los Angeles Daily...

Lisa Ling urges petition support

lauralingeunalee.jpg Television journalist Lisa Ling just Twittered a request for support of an online petition calling on North Korea to release Los Angeles journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee. They have...

LA Sketchbook: Antonio ponders

sgVillaraigosaPonders.jpg Will Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa run for governor? Steve Greenberg imagines the deliberations. More by Greenberg in the LA Sketchbook archive. Click cartoon to see it bigger....

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 6.3.09

Schwarzenegger's plea, the Lu Parker/Villaraigosa talk continues, those Chinese are still at LAX, books by Barbara Streisand and Choire Sicha, a journalist gets a job and more. Mark Lacter's LA...

Tweet o' the day

From here on, I'll probably post tweets o' the day only occasionally. They seem better suited to Twitter itself, where I'll keep retweeting media postings on the LA Observed feed....

Trial coming for journos Laura Ling and Euna Lee

lauralingeunalee.jpg I've been awfully remiss in not jumping on the bad situation facing Los Angeles journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee, the Current TV reporters who have been held in North...

Return of the Neon Cruise: June 13

Here's a great chance to join in the sometimes-annual LA Observed Neon Cruise — and to help out the wonderful and very-Angeleno Museum of Neon Art downtown. How better to...

Ex-KCRW commenter un-laid off

Nick Madigan was axed as a reporter for Sam Zell's shrinking Baltimore Sun. Then several co-workers with safer safety nets volunteered to leave instead. Madigan stays. He used to do...

Chatting with Trutanich

trutanichfox.jpg At last Friday's LA Observed rooftop party at the Formosa in Hollywood, city attorney-elect Carmen Trutanich stuck around for some fairly extended conversations with revelers. Celeste Fremon reports on hers,...

Lu Parker should have lunch with Mirthala

Steve Lopez thinks that Mayor Antonio Villaraiogsa's latest 30-something television news squeeze could learn something from the last one. Call her immediately, he advises. Heh heh: I don't know Parker,...

Charting the LAT's decline

In the June issue of Los Angeles, our own Mark Lacter takes a look behind the sagging fortunes of the L.A. Times and finds a set of multifaceted challenges. The...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 6.2.09

Conan O'Brien comes to town, reality show suicides, Meg Whitman criticizes the initiative process, Dan Neil hits the GM circuit, Moneyball and more after the jump. Also: LA Biz Observed...

Los Angeles mag takes bunch of awards

Los Angeles won the general excellence honor at Monday night's National City and Regional Magazine Awards in New Orleans, along with five other prizes for individual staffers. Two of the...

Parker told bosses she's dating mayor *

luparkermav.jpg Phil Willon, who covers Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for the L.A. Times, posted at L.A. Now that Channel 5 reporter-weekend anchor Lu Parker told KTLA officials that she and the mayor...

Ochoa and LA Weekly 'part ways' *

LA Weekly just announced that longtime editor Laurie Ochoa is leaving. The Weekly story says it is "actively searching for Editor in Chief candidates who will continue LA Weekly's legacy...

Wild art: Mayor goes to the Valley *

avmattepstein.jpg Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa dropped in Saturday at the opening of actress Melissa Joan Hart's store Sweet Harts in Sherman Oaks. He's getting a hug from Valley restaurant and real...

LA Sketchbook: And they're off....

sgHollywoodPark.jpg Last week's news about the likely redevelopment of Hollywood Park in Inglewood got the attention of LA Sketchbook's Steve Greenberg. Click the cartoon to view it bigger. More by...

Morning Buzz: Monday 6.1.09

Wow, it's June already. Today's Morning Buzz has much talk about Antonio Villaraigosa and his intentions, more questioning of the Los Angeles magazine failure cover, plus some other politics and...
Can we all agree Elizabeth Peña had a certain something?
elizabeth-pena-variety.jpgThe actress who worked in Hollywood from her early 20s died at Cedars at age 55. Read more.
LAO_LewisMacAdams copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard is a weekly feature of LA Observed. Check out Gary's archive.
Streetscape | Whitnall Highway
dwp-bldg-whitnall-hwy.jpg DWP architecture in North Hollywood.
Print relic
linotype-le-figaro.jpgKevin spotted this Linotype machine on display in the Paris lobby of Le Figaro, the second-largest national newspaper in France. Bigger
Streetscape | Alameda Corridor
red-dress-alameda-corridor.jpg