LA Observed archive
for August 2010

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

'Marketplace' editor off to Stanford

paddy-hirsch.jpg Paddy Hirsch, senior editor in Los Angeles for American Public Radio's "Marketplace" program, is heading to Stanford on a John S. Knight fellowship.

Conan to name his new show on Wednesday *

According to a Twitter post from Conan O'Brien, Wednesday is when he'll reveal what his TBS talk show will be called.

Michael Douglas calls his cancer stage IV, 'intense'

Appearing tonight on David Letterman's show, actor Michael Douglas said his throat cancer has advanced to stage IV, the most advanced form using that rating system.

Early to rise and watch TV

The number of American households that have a TV set on at 4:30 a.m. has doubled, to 16 percent, since 1995.

Eisner set to take over Tribune reins, report says

The Wrap has posted a story saying that an announcement on former Disney CEO Michael Eisner "becoming the chairman of the Tribune Co., is imminent."

New sign spotted at Dodger Stadium (not)

Jamiewood.jpg With Mannywood a thing of the past, artist Stuart Rapeport suggests a new use for the left field corner seats. Jamiewood! Day 2 of McCourt vs. McCourt: Law student Josh...

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 8.31.10

Child fatality failures, big fundraising week in Sacramento, Batman and Yoda coming to the City Council and not for laughs, and more inside.

McCourt vs. McCourt in photos

mccourts-alcorn.jpg Photographers Jonathan Alcorn (top) and Ted Soqui (bottom) were both out waiting for Frank and Jamie McCourt to come and go from court on Monday..

Daily Beast snatches up Pelisek

Last month when the Grim Sleeper arrest broke, the LA Weekly's Christine Pelisek wrote about her background in the case for the Daily Beast. Now she'll join their LA bureau.

Another 'ugly end' for Manny

Perusing the baseball media reaction to Manny Ramirez leaving the Dodgers via ejection and waiver claim, after three trips to the disabled list this season and being unofficially benched by manager Joe Torre.

LA Sketchbook: Dodgers scoreboard

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History in the pavement on Outpost Drive

Nice piece by writer Steve Oney on the memories evoked by the city covering the old concrete pavement of Outpost Drive, with its embedded paw prints of a long ago...

Morning Buzz: McCourt Day 8.30.10

The story of the day in Los Angeles is the opening pitch of the Frank and Jamie McCourt divorce trial. It's not OJ, MJ or Phil Spector big, but it...

How the Emmys opening number came together

For some (OK, me) the highlight of the Emmy awards broadcast was Jimmy Fallon, Tina Fey, Lea Michele and a bunch of other actors — even the heavyset guy from "Lost" — running through the Nokia Theater in an homage to "Glee.

Bad to worse at KPFK

A new email from KPFK management says no programmers answered a call to help the station, so now cuts in the schedule have to be made.

Villaraigosa sightings at the Emmys *

The mayor of Los Angeles should go to the Emmys, but given Antonio Villaraigosa's recent controversy over freebies the question will be asked this time: was he gifted, did he perform some vaguely official function, or both?

Manny goes out sitting

mannyjg120.jpg ESPN and the Times are reporting, based on an unnamed baseball source, that the Dodgers will send Manny Ramirez to the Chicago White Sox on a waiver claim Monday. If...

Paris Hilton's best mugshot yet

paris-hilton-mugshot-82010.jpg As Paris Hilton gets older and more experienced at this getting busted thing, she's learned to really work the booking camera.

Fire damages Press-Telegram building

press-telegram-fire.jpg The vacant former home of the Long Beach Press-Telegram was damaged by a fire Saturday afternoon that started near the old pressroom.

Explainer: green flashes over the Pacific at sunset

green-flash-ocr.jpg When Judy Flagg of Irvine looked at her photos of a sunset from Laguna Beach, she saw a pair of small green flashes just above the sun on the horizon. Mystery solved, via the Orange County Register's science blog.

Frank McCourt gives Dodgers tix to cops

Frank McCourt brought more than himself when he accepted an award from the Los Angeles Police Protective League’s charitable Eagle & Badge Foundation.

Part of 60 freeway to be named for victim of Mexican violence

The stretch of state route 60 from Monterey Park to Rosemead has been designated by the Legislature as the Roberto "Bobby" Salcedo Memorial Highway, in honor of the El Monte...

Grand Avenue developer seeks 2-year delay

Related Cos. said this week that it plans to request a two-year extension of its current February 2011 deadline to begin construction on the big Grand Avenue Project, citing the economy.

Three men shot to death in West Hollywood

Three bodies were found in an apartment shortly after "shots fired" calls came in from the 600 block of North Kings Road, just off Melrose, about 9:15 p.m. West Hollywood...

Time to open the Ruben Salazar files, says visiting blogger

ruben-salazar-stamp.jpg Visiting blogger Frank Sotomayor, an adjunct professor at USC Annenberg, argues that it's time for Sheriff Lee Baca and other officials to end the mysteries about what happened to Ruben Salazar in East Los Angeles.

Blue whales putting on a show this summer

blue-whale-pete-thomas-blog.jpg Every summer the boat captains say this is the year the blues are amazing. But this year the numbers are staggering, says outdoors writer Pete Thomas.

Law professor Kmiec hurt in fatal car crash

Douglas Kmiec, the Republican law professor at Pepperdine who endorsed Barack Obama for president and became U.S. ambassador to Malta, was seriously injured in a one-car crash near Calabasas that killed a nun.

It's an OC vs. LA smackdown, by the other guys

OCmag-sept10.jpg Orange Coast magazine comes up with 52 reasons why life in Orange County is better than life in Los Angeles.

Call him Gustavo Arellano, managing editor

Arellano ascends from staff writer at the OC Weekly.

El Niño on the move, more intense

A new study out of JPL concludes that the El Niño readings in the western Pacific have become more intense and moved westward — over time, not currently.

Jennifer Gould asks: spell the name right

jennifer-gould-crop.jpg Jennifer Gould, the freelance GA reporter for KTLA Channel 5, says the news coverage of Donald Bren and former lover Jennifer McKay Gold has brought her some unwanted calls from the media — for interviews.

Bruce Ackerman, Valley business leader was 64 *

Ackerman, chairman of the Community Redevelopment Agency board of commissioners, died today of cancer.

Mehlman 'most powerful Republican to identify as gay'

That's the analysis of The Atlantic politics editor Marc Ambinder, who took Ken Mehlman's announcement that he is, after all, gay.

Donald Bren off the hook, jury rules

The Orange County bazillionaire does not owe his out-of-wedlock children any money, a jury decides. Mark has been following the case at LA Biz Observed....

Morning Buzz: Thursday 8.26.10

Traffic disruption in Century City, Metrolink offers to settle with Chatsworth victims, Steve Cooley's campaign contributors, plus Keith Brackpool, Robert Rizzo, Tim Mangan, Will Forte, pot shops and today's Bookworm guest.

Alternate design for Broad museum on Bunker Hill

broad-museum-rapeport.jpg Why, I think that's a Kaufman and Broad home.

Parks' residency review closed, DA's office says

The inquiry that Councilman Bernard Parks' office blames on Wave columnist Betty Pleasant has been dropped and will not result in criminal charges, according to David Demerjian, who heads the District Attorney's public integrity division.

Looking for pretty people in the stadium seats

CG3logo.jpg Rebecca Schoenkopf, the former CityBeat editor, begins writing about checking out the upper-deck crowd at Dodger Stadium, but the piece veers into more substantial turf, including her enrollment in graduate school at USC "after this last awful year and a half."

LA Weekly adds Henry Rollins

Henry Rollins, the refugee from Indie 103 who landed with a Saturday afternoon show on KCRW a year ago, is now also a music columnist for the LA Weekly.

Harry Shearer's 'The Big Uneasy'

Picture 32.png The native Angeleno and KCRW show host who's now living in New Orleans has directed a documentary on the failings that led to the Hurricane Katrina disaster in his adopted hometown.

State chief justice confirmed: Tani Cantil-Sakauye

Tani Cantil-Sakauye was unanimously confirmed today by the Commission on Judicial Appointments as the next chief justice of the California Supreme Court....

Elin talks to People about Tiger

elin-people-cover.jpg Elin Nordegren broke her silence on the end of her marriage to Tiger Woods in an exclusive interview that runs in Friday's People magazine.

Manny placed on waivers by Dodgers

mannyjg120.jpg Both ESPN and the L.A. Times have confirmed with baseball sources that the Dodgers have asked waivers on Manny Ramirez.

County probation a big mess, new report says

The Los Angeles County Probation Department's chief deputy says in "a searing critique" that his agency has been plagued by weak management, poor communication, entrenched perceptions of favoritism and staffers who would never have survived a rigorous background check.

What's worse than 45 dead in Iraq bombings? *

Seventy two bodies found at a ranch in the northern Mexico state of Tamaulipas, another area plagued by drug violence. * Media note: Randal Archibold, recently of the New York...

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 8.25.10

Is the county Department of Children and Family Services hiding child deaths, plus Obama's pitch crashes Brown's website, Fox's bipartisan donations in California, CBS' bad week, the new THR and...

Vin Scully, and Dodgers, in focus

vin-scully-lifemag.jpg Sports Illustrated.com has posted a gallery of photos spanning the career of Vin Scully, who the magazine notes was the youngest announcer to work a World Series at age 25 in 1953.

Obama pitches for Jerry Brown

This mass email just went out from the Democratic National Committee's Organizing for America project.

Brand X editor moves to LAT Calendar staff

Deborah Vankin has been the editor of Brand X, the L.A. Times weekly section on stuff to do.

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 8.24.10

DWP and the ocean, the Obama is a Muslim canard, EAA ratifies health care contributions, a look at Diller Scofidio + Renfro plus The Hollywood Reporter claims it has more...

LA Sketchbook: Casa Alarcon

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Google defeated by complexity of L.A. geography

My KCRW column this week talked about the border settlement between Koreatown and Little Bangladesh, and got into the fun we've been having with Google Maps over "Sandford" and other...

No signs of trauma in mummified babies

A preliminary autopsy found nothing about the cause of death for those two infants whose remains were found wrapped in 1930s newspaper in a Westlake district basement.

Eli Broad makes it official

All that theater last week about Eli Broad not having decided to build his art museum Downtown? Theater.

Morning Buzz: Monday 8.23.10

California Republicans feeling pretty good, Whitman says she would defend Prop. 8 in court, Willie Brown on Schwarzenegger, Metro's bungled turnstiles program, plus audio of Vin Scully's press conference and more.

More fun with Google Maps fails

achoi-googlemap.jpg Achois was the name that Europeans and, later, Americans thought more or less reflected the pronunciation that the local Tongva used for their settlement at the north end of the...

Los Angeles Magazine looks at autism

lamagcover-910.jpg Los Angeles Magzine editor Mary Melton's child has autism. So do an increasing percentage of Angelenos, as the magazine's September cover package explores.

Weekend news and notes

A round-up from the weekend's email and media.

Vin Scully to announce plans on Sunday **

vin-scully2010-dn.jpg He wouldn't say on Saturday what he will announce, but the 82-year-old voice of the Dodgers since the Brooklyn days dropped a hint to TJ Simers: "I know what I...

Swing Era of jazz began at L.A.'s Palomar Ballroom

Palomar-ballroom.jpg The Palomar Ballroom, billed as the largest dance hall on the West Coast, was at 3rd Street and Vermont Avenue on Aug. 21, 1935.

Hey Google Maps, it's Sanford *

sandford-map.jpg Google Maps' label on a section of the Wilshire district as Sandford is a typo, but a bigger mystery remains.

Video discussion: the LAT's teacher stats

Just came across this piece with NBC 4 News Conference host Conan Nolan talking in some depth with Doug Smith, the data analysis editor who led the Los Angeles...

First lines: Ellroy's 'Pursuit of Women'

Hilliker Curse.jpg At the mailbox today was the newest by James Ellroy. "The Hilliker Curse: My Pursuit of Women" came billed as a "raw, brutally candid memoir" that draws on the infamous...

Love this 1918 Los Angeles map *

map-la-1918.jpg The search for Sandford out of the earlier Koreatown post led me to this 1918 map of city of Los Angeles annexations. It's a beauty, with abundant detail.

Koreatown & Little Bangladesh: peace in our time *

sandford-map.jpg At a City Council committee gathering today, leaders from Koreatown and the newly nascent Little Bangladesh agreed on official boundaries of their respective communities.

Time clocks now an LAT fixture

New memo on how the time clocks idea is going to work at the Los Angeles Times.

Mario Obledo, civil rights activist was 78 *

Obledo, a co-founder of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund and sometimes called the "Godfather of the Latino Movement," was Gov. Jerry Brown's health and welfare secretary from 1975 to 1982.

Tribune bankruptcy talks break down as key players flee

PlaintiffsDropOut.pdf Sam Zell's plan to emerge from bankruptcy "has unraveled in the wake of an independent report concluding that talks leading up to the company's 2007 leveraged buyout bordered on fraud," the Chicago Sun-Times reports today.

One-liner o' the day

Jerry Crowe's Text Messages From Press Row column in the L.A. Times Sports section.

New San Andreas study: Yeah, Big One still coming

quake-sim-82010.jpg A detailed and long-awaited study of the fault found that earthquakes along the fault were more numerous than previously believed, adding to evidence that we are overdue for a very, very large and potentially catastrophic event.

Parks' residence under review, but not investigation

That review is already several months old without turning into an Alarcon-style investigation.

Kenny Edwards, musician was 64

You may remember last week's item on Edwards needing help for a medical airlift home from Denver. He got home to Santa Barbara and died there yesterday.

He said, she said: Broad disputes his museum quote

Eli Broad insists that Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky's news website misquoted him saying that his art museum will definitely be built Downtown on Grand Avenue.

Waxman flacks her conference at Finke's expense

In her column at The Wrap, editor-in-chief Sharon Waxman invites arch-rival on the web Nikki Finke to come speak at the Wrap's first entertainment industry leadership conference.

Here's where Councilman Alarcon 'lives'

alarcon-home-dn.jpg Well, we know he hasn't been violating the city's watering ordinance.

Times wins appeal of prior restraint on photo

Superior Court Judge Hilleri J. Merritt committed "an unconstitutional prior restraint on speech" violating the First Amendment when she blocked the L.A. Times from publishing a courtroom photo of a murder defendant, the state Court of Appeal ruled.

Jamie McCourt's lawyers drop a bombshell

In a brief filed today, Jamie's lawyers produce a version of the famed marriage agreement that specifically says the Dodgers were not to be solely owned by Frank in the event of divorce.

Morning Buzz: Thursday 8.19.10

More on the mystery woman whose name swirls around the mummified remains in Westlake, plus Whitman's upcoming weekend, an outrage worse than Bell, the Ruben Salazar files and more.

Richard Lopez of Cannibal & the Headhunters was 65

"Scar" Lopez co-founded Cannibal and the Headhunters at Lincoln High School, helping give birth to the distinctive Eastside sound.

His name's Gary. He takes pictures of L.A.

gary-leonard-weekly-kevin-scanlon.jpg I'm happy to announce that LA Observed is the new home of Gary Leonard's long-running series of Los Angeles street photos, still under the banner of Take My Picture Gary Leonard.

Register reporters to become more, uh, visible

The Orange County Register is going all the way, decreeing that reporters and columnists shall have new mug shots taken that will run with every story.

Will Lewis to retire from KCRW

Lewis has been in management roles at KCRW for 32 years, coming in with Ruth Seymour at the station's inception as an NPR powerhouse.

Hatfield's makes Bon Appetit list of best new restaurants

It's not new, strictly speaking, but Hatfield's is in a new space on Melrose.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 8.18.10

Ripped from the annals of noir L.A.: mummified remains of two infants from the 1930s found in Westlake district steamer trunk. Plus more inside on two days of Obamajams, the county tries to kill the messenger on child deaths, and more.

Dr. Laura quits radio, cites (LOL) the First Amendment

After taking flack for insulting her listeners with a string of n-words, radio talker Laura Schlessinger told Larry King tonight that she'll leave her show when her contract expires at the end of the year -- because she wants her rights back.

Broad says museum 'absolutely' coming to Bunker Hill

The Board of Supervisors today approved its part of the deal to lure Eli Broad's art museum to Downtown. After the vote, Broad called it a done deal despite the formality of another vote scheduled Monday by the Grand Avenue Authority.

Manny's exit drumbeat continues

mannyjg120.jpg Speculation continues about Manny Ramirez packing his bags even before the Dodgers are officially out of the pennant race. Today: Buster Olney of ESPN.

She will eat lunch in this town again

noomi-rapace-toh.jpg Amid all the talk about the American actress who will replace her as Lisbeth Salander in the remake of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," the real thing is in town this week launching a Hollywood career.

Two views of LA Times' teacher story

Board of Education member blasts the story, while a nationally respected author has praise.

South Bay reporter signs off

One thing about all the newsrooms in town having blogs now is that when reporters leave, they have some place to say farewell.

Video: Man rescued from burning car in Valley

Good Samaritans on Burbank Boulevard in Van Nuys used a crowbar and guts to free an older man trapped in his burning 1932 Ford after a four-car accident on Sunday. Watch the video.

Grammy Museum versus the scalpers

The museum invokes the LAPD to cut down on scalping. An email warning to a ticket buyer.

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 8.17.10

Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown, school scores are up, Villaraigosa and the cyclists, a Heal the Bay mockumentary and more.

Bullet train on Angels Flight?

angelsflight3.jpg Well it could happen, right?

Dodgers change course and sign top draft pick

The Dodgers surprise a lot of people and give a young prospect the team's biggest signing bonus ever.

LA Sketchbook: Prop. w8

qqxsgProp W8.jpg

Changing of the guard at the NYT bureau

I-405-logo-color.jpg Adam Nagourney's first piece as L.A. bureau chief: traffic on the 405.

Ray Bradbury on living to be 90

Ray Bradbury tells fans about his upcoming 90th birthday in a series of exclusive videos shot in his home for UCLA, where he wrote "Fahrenheit 451."

A Guadalajara reunion in Boyle Heights

libros waiting book.jpg Those of us who didn't take part in the celebration of Los Angeles literary goodness at last year's Guadalajara book fair have a new reason to be envious. A new book, edited by Veronique de Turenne and J. Michael Walker, celebrates the scene all over again.

Obama pool reports: 'Let's just hang out'

From the Beverly Hilton to Hancock Park and back they go, compliments of the feed by Jonathan Weisman of the Wall Street Journal to the White House press corps.

Prop. 8 ruling, and gay unions, on hold until December

The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has extended the stay-pending-appeal of the recent Proposition 8 decision until at least December....

Um, another Lisbeth post after all *

rooney-mara.jpg I was wrong: there's still life in the Lisbeth Salander topic. American actress Rooney Mara has been tapped to play the heroine of Stieg Larsson's Millenium trilogy in the English-language version of "The Girl with the DragonTattoo."

Sam Rubin goes 'Hollywood, Uncensored'

KTLA entertainment anchor Sam Rubin is executive producing and hosting a new weekly talk show for Reelzchannel they're calling "Hollywood Uncensored With Sam Rubin" and billing as "'The McLaughlin Group' meets 'Real Time With Bill Maher' with a Hollywood spin.

Carolyn Jensen Chadwick, NPR producer

Carolyn Jensen Chadwick, who died here yesterday, "created sound-rich, evocative stories that once defined the NPR listening experience," writes Current. org. She also was NPR's first employee and the husband of former host Alex Chadwick.

Morning Buzz: Monday 8.16.10

Obama will be in Hancock Park for fundraisers this evening, so plan traffic accordingly. Plus more inside.

Dan Avey, radio man was 69

Dan Avey, a longtime KFWB anchor, co-host of the KABC morning show with Ken Minyard, professor at USC and Cal State Northridge and former radio voice of the Los Angeles Kings, died over the weekend at Cedars Sinai.

New columnist lineup at Daily News

Kerry Cavanaugh, Al Martinez, Mariel Garza plus Doug McIntyre.

Journo launches new Olympics website

Alan Abrahamson, who covered the Olympics and international sports for the Los Angeles Times and NBC, has started 3 Wire Sports in Los Angeles.

McCourts' web of companies is dizzying

It turns out that the Frank and Jamie McCourt Dodgers, which own the stadium and parking lots and pay their property taxes under various company names, charge themselves $14 million in annual rent.

John Chase, West Hollywood's urban designer was 57

john-chase-gelatobaby.jpg Chase, the author of several books on urbanism and Los Angeles, died Friday of an apparent heart attack. He was the godfather to the daughter of Frances Anderton, host of...

Light posting day

For me, anyway. My finger joints hurt, and it's a summer Friday....

Waters says she did nothing wrong

Rep. Maxine Waters held a press conference in Washington this morning, appearing with her chief of staff and grandson, Mikael Moore, to deliver a presentation complete with a PowerPoint slide show.

Dr. Laura apologizes for using slur...11 times

Radio talker Laura Schlessinger was counseling an African American caller the other day and somehow found a way to use the n-word 11 times.

Some serious ugliness settles around the McCourts' team

On a bad day all around, the story is in the ledes.

Big night at Downtown Art Walk

artwalk-810-weiners.jpg Big crowds — possibly the largest yet — with dozens of food trucks and many familiar faces.

LA Sketchbook: KTLA Stan

KTLA Stan.jpg

How the news Emmys work at KTLA

KTLA staffers on Emmy-winning coverage have to pony up $250 if they want a plaque — and prove they worked on the shows.

Musician Kenny Edwards to get medical airlift

edwards-ronstadt.jpg Edwards, a longtime session player in L.A. who was a member of Linda Ronstadt's band The Stone Poneys in the 1960s, needs a medical airlift from Denver to Santa Barbara...

Vaughn extends stay on gay marriages

U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker kept his temporary hold on gay marriages in effect until Aug. 18 to give supporters of Proposition 8 time to appeal last week's ruling invalidating key parts of the voter-approved measure.

Gil and Eric Garcetti, a long time ago

gil-eric-garcetti.jpg City Council President Eric Garcetti posted this childhood photo to his Facebook wall: "Nice mustache, Dad!"

So, what has happened to summer?

There's so much talk about the cooler-than-usual temperatures that the National Weather Service put out a statement yesterday titled What has happened to summer in Southern California. The explanation is...

Morning Buzz: Thursday 8.12.10

Sacramento Democrats' new tax plan, Hewlett-Packard people seem to prefer Boxer, new watering rules and more.

Remains are those of Mitrice Richardson *

Sheriff Lee Baca and coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter will hold a 9:30 conference and haven't commented yet, but the Los Angeles Times reports via news alert that the remains found this week in Malibu Canyon are the missing woman.

LA Sketchbook: Project 50

qqProject50.jpg

We could call him Sir Stan Chambers

Apparently even many at KTLA don't know that Stan Chambers is a Knight Commander of the Pontifical Order of St. Gregory the Great, knighted by the pope for his service to the Catholic church and the community.

Beverly Hills pedestrian sting: 53 tickets

The Beverly Hills PD cracked down on drivers failing to yield to a plainclothes officer crossing Wilshire Boulevard at Palm Avenue, the intersection where the city says it gets the most complaints.

Olbermann salutes Stan Chambers

Keith Olbermann on MSNBC just ran a personal tribute to Channel 5's Stan Chambers. I missed most of it, but the sentiment was similar to a couple of tweets Olbermann...

Jay Leno talks to the lame on Melrose

Jay Leno last night asked people on Melrose Avenue some questions about places around the world. First question: In what country are the Hawaiian Islands? Everybody failed, of course.

Stop calling Newsweek's Sidney Harman a billionaire

In all the media stories about his acquisition of Newsweek, Sidney Harman has been invariably given billionaire status. But not in Forbes.

David L. Wolper, producer of 'Roots' was 82

Wolper also produced "L.A. Confidential" and the children's classic "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory," as well as the opening and closing ceremonies at the 1984 Olympic Games in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

View from the announcer's booth

courtney-twitpic.jpg Angel Stadium announcer David Courtney just posted this photo.

Flight attendant says he's a 'bag nazi'

slater-gawker.jpg Steven Slater, the Jet Blue flight steward who quit so dramatically after being hit on the head by a passenger's bag, has been posting over the past year about the trouble caused by the increasing number of bags in airliner cabins.

Stan Chambers makes it official

stan-chambers-blevins.jpg They're holding the event for Stan Chambers right now at KTLA. Here's a photo.

George Takei goes home again

george-takei.jpg Actor and Howard Stern announcer George Takei takes listeners through his Japanese-American family's internment during World War II in a radio documentary airing in Sirius XM Radio.

Former Her-Ex journalist writes about his cancer

Chris Gulker, long established in Silicon Valley since the Los Angeles Herald Examiner folded, has been blogging about the progression of his rare, fast-growing glioma.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 8.11.10

Great white sharks making a comeback off our coast, LAT staffers who sued Sam Zell lose a big round, prior restraint of Times allowed to continue, plus more US staffers follow Janice Min the Hollywood Reporter and notes on Lisa Leslie, David Beckham, Rick Neuheisel, Lady Gaga, Susanna Hoffs and a new food blog.

KCET boss: 'we are prepared if we must change'

KCET President and CEO Al Jerome has posted a message to viewers "to start a conversation with you" about whether the station should stay with PBS or break away to become an independent station.

Standing ovation: Stan Chambers to retire

The dean of Los Angeles television reporters — and it's not even close — turns 87 tomorrow and is expected to hang up his mike at an 11 a.m. party on the KTLA lot.

'A very tragic night' up on highway 395

395-crash.jpg Bennet Kessler, the dean of Eastern Sierra journalists, has covered more than her share of crashes on U.S. highway 395. "A horrible scene of death, fire and suffering," she wrote in today's story.

Sheriff changes mind, will examine Salazar boxes

Yesterday, Sheriff Lee Baca was refusing to let the L.A. Times see eight boxes of documents on the killing of Ruben Salazar, the former Times columnist who was the news director at KMEX when he was killed by a sheriff's tear-gas projectile fired into a bar during East L.A. protests in 1970.

Radio programming notes

Coming up on "Which Way, L.A." plus Jennifer Ferro's pledge drive and Lou Adler on KPCC's "Off-Ramp."

Stieg Larsson's girlfriend on Lisbeth Salander

Before we leave the subject of Lisbeth Salander, this video from ABC's Nightline: author Stieg Larsson's girlfriend talks about how the character came to be introduced in "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo."

Rosendahl adds a communications deputy

Jon Fairbanks joined the staff of Councilman Bill Rosendahl today.

Malibu Canyon remains believed to be female

The Times cites an unnamed law enforcement source saying the skeletal remains brought out of Malibu Canyon yesterday appear to be female, and women's clothing was found nearby.

This could be a marketing coup for Jet Blue

Best take I've seen on the whole flight-attendant-quits story is this tweet from @funnyordie.

Joe Hicks signs on to Pajamas Media

joe-hicks-pjtv-grab.jpg Joe Hicks, the former ACLU spokesman and executive director of the L.A. Human Rights Commission who's made a new career of dinging the left, is taking his lefty-turns-right shtick to a new show he's hosting called The Minority Report at Pajamas Media's video channel.

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 8.10.10

Bell's big problem isn't high salaries but that it's controlled by gangs, says veteran southeast reporter Jeffrey Anderson. Plus Steve Cooley's gifts, Broad and Saban give to Brown and Whitman, the report on Maxine Waters, LAX north runway may be moved and that judge is slapped down for prioor restraint of a Times photo.

Roger Ebert's paean to 'Lost in Translation'

bill-murray-scarlett.jpg In his Great Movies series for the Chicago Sun-Times, Ebert says there are basically two kinds of people when it comes to the 2003 film "Lost in Translation." Those who get the subtle relationship of empathy and loneliness between Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, and those who "want to know what it's about."

What 'Mad Men' was about last night

tumblr_l6wf7vxxne1qzlum5o1_500.jpg The main ingredients of American counterculture formation all guest-starred in last night's "Mad Men" episode: abortion, Berkeley, Vietnam and, most ominously, young people, says Natasha Vargas-Cooper.

Lending some expertise to the other side

Longtime California political writer John Marelius, lately at the San Diego Union-Tribune and previously at the Daily News for 15+ years, has been appointed to a state Fair Political Practices Commission task force to reform and simplify the Political Reform Act. Plus other media notes.
The sheriff's department is taking great pains to point out that there's no evidence at all linking the remains to the missing woman, but they are checking.

Christopher Hitchens: 'I'm dying' *

Hitchens, recently diagnosed with lung cancer, talks to The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg.

Morning Buzz: Monday 8.9.10

What's riding on Boxer-Fiorina, another Downtown developer wants a tax break, plus Dana Goodyear, Joel Kotkin, Stefano Tonchi, Gustavo Arellano and more....

Finding an American Lisbeth *

lisbeth-salander.jpg Noomi Rapace is so perfect as sulky, brilliant hacker-heroine Lisbeth Salander that it seems like a waste to spend any time trying to cast the part for the English-language version of "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo."

Weekend reads

ua-balcony-wsj.jpg Broadway theaters in WSJ, McCourts try to settle, Bell's $1.5 million city manager, Pau Gasol in scubs and more.

An odd Downtown connection to the day

inception-wilshire.jpg In the afternoon I parked on Wilshire, between Grand and Hope — so it was easy to spot that block in "Inception" a few hours later.

On almost going to Disneyland

starleekine.jpg Great, creepy, kind of disturbing story this weekend on This American Life by Starlee Kine, who grew up with SoCal kids who, as she says, were all jaded about going...

Quick revisit with photographer Charles Brittin

brittinderricks.jpg His house in Santa Monica Canyon sold to a producer of "Doctor Who," but isn't the 1957 photo of Venice Beach interesting?

Salaries, salaries everywhere

Add KPCC to the list of websites offering a searchable database of city of Los Angeles employee salaries, built from the file that Controller Wendy Greuel made available.

'Reliable Sources' in L.A. this weekend

Hugh Hefner will be on from the Playboy Mansion, and there's a California politics panel that includes the LA Weekly’s Jill Stewart and legal analyst Roger Cossack.

KABC radio drops Michael Linder

I thought Michael Linder had made a real impact covering City Hall since he joined KABC in March, 2009 and opened a bureau in the civic center.

Majestic Crest theatre in Westwood sold

Email about one of the city's cinema treasure from owner Roebert Bucksbaum, who saved the theatre from closing once and has been trying to sell it since 2008.

Geez, people really want to go shopping

The freeway alert sign on the 10 West approaching Santa Monica is warning people this afternoon that parking in downtown Santa Monica is full. It's because of today's opening of...

Police bust up homeless camp in the Valley

tujunga-wash-camp.jpg Los Angeles police on horseback raided a long-standing homeless encampment under the 210 freeway in Big Tujunga Wash and used ropes to rip down shelters.

City of L.A. posts salaries of workers

Controller Wendy Greuel has unveiled an online searchable database of salaries for most City of Los Angeles employees.

Morning Buzz: Friday 8.6.10

What Maxine Waters had to say, what Jerry Brown did say, what legal analysts are saying about the Prop. 8 ruling, Jack Shafer's advice on what Sidney Harman shouldn't say...

LA Sketchbook: Prop. (8) Infinity

qqProp Infinity.jpg

Another tale of political dirty tricks in Bell

How Bell's city hall and the police department tried to quash dissent by residents who wondered where all the money went.

Architectural Digest moving to New York

Conde Nast has named Margaret Russell the new editor-in-chief of Architectural Digest, succeeding Paige Rense. But the bigger news is that the magazine will move from Los Angeles to New Yor

Judge upholds her prior restraint on Times photo

Superior Court Judge Hilleri G. Merrit upheld her order barring the L.A. Times from publishing a courtroom photo of a murder defendant whose picture has already been in the media.

Waters on with Warren Olney tonight

Rep. Maxine Waters talks about the ethics charges against her on "Which Way, L.A.?" at 7 p.m. on KCRW. Also: Tavis Smiley talks to Garry Shandling tonight on his PBS...

HuffPost on Santa Monica vs. L.A.

Here's how Los Angeles doesn't measure up to Santa Monica in the eye of luxury hotel reviewer Melanie Nayer, writing at the Huffington Post.

Morning Buzz: Thursday 8.5.10

Mary Hart has done enough ET, Meg with John & Ken, a judge chills the Times, LoGrande confirmed, Sean Penn as Max Perkins and a whole bunch of media notes.

What isn't unwell with the Dodgers these days? *

The Dodgers are playing about as well as you'd expect from a team that devotes three of its lineup spots to Jamey Carroll, Ryan Theriot and Scott Podsednik — and...

Lynne Doll, president of The Rogers Group *

The president and partner of The Rogers Group died last night. Eric Moses, president of the Public Relations of Society L.A. chapter, has put out a nice statement to his board.

Alarcon says he's innocent and DA is simply wrong

Councilman Richard Alarcon has put out a statement saying he's innocent of the charges and that he lives at the house on Nordhoff Street where the district attorney says he fraudulently registered to vote.

Meg Whitman in studio with John & Ken

The KFI bad boys haven't been kind to her in the past, so there's some newsworthiness to Whitman's appearance.

Prop. 8 ruled unconstitutional *

Federal judge Chief Vaughn Walker in San Francisco has ruled California voters' ban on same-sex marriage is invalid.

Alarcon expects to be indicted today **

Alarcon_profile.jpg City Councilman Richard Alarcon has informed city officials that he expects DA Steve Cooley's grand jury will issue an indictment today charging him in connection with his residency issues, the Times says.

He's got a nude body for radio

MQschmidtLEAD.jpg "Off-Ramp" this weekend talks to Michael Q Schmidt, 57 years old and about 300 pounds, who has made his career as an actor and nude model.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 8.4.10

KCET's financial struggles, Prop. 8 ruling's timing, Tribune troubles redux, Tim Rutten on Anne Rice quitting the Christians, and will Los Angeles County cost the Democrats the election?

100+ women died from South L.A. serial killers, Times says

During a 10-year period beginning in 1984, multiple serial killers targeted young, poor, African American women across the south side of the city and county, the Los Angeles Times says.

Sam Sifton checks out LudoBites

ludobites-nyt.jpg The New York Times food critic wangled his way into LudoBites 5.0 twice last week, in the Downtown location that's in use this summer.

Bunker Hill video deleted from Vimeo *

melrose-hotel-bunker-hill-lapl.jpg A whole lot of you watched — and by the sound of your emails, tweets and Facebook comments really enjoyed — the USC student film of 1956 Bunker Hill by Kent MacKenzie.

Prop. 8 decision to be announced Wednesday

The federal court in San Francisco says that tomorrow is the day for the much-anticipated ruling on the constitutionality of the measure banning same-sex marriage in California.

Paul Rudd DJs '92 bat mitzvah in the Valley

As the video says, before "Dinner for Schmucks, " "I Love You Man" or even "Clueless" Paul Rudd did the bat mitzvah for Gabrielle Birkner.

Phil Jackson likes his off-seasons on the slow slide

Jeanie Buss, the longtime girlfriend of Lakers coach Phil Jackson, tweeted just now about a text message from her man.

Marylin Hudson, co-founder of Round Table West was 76

An important figure in the Los Angeles book world has died. Marylin Hudson co-founded the legendary and long-running Round Table West book and author program.

Bobby Hebb, musician was 72 *

Bobby Hebb, who wrote the 1966 hit "Sunny," died today in Nashville at age 72.

About that Jon Stewart goatee

food-trucks-marketplace.jpg "Marketplace" host Kai Ryssdal this afternoon asked his listeners, via Twitter: "Okay, so if Jon Stewart grows a goatee, can I?"

2 random minutes at Brooklyn & Soto

Blogger El Chavo at LA Eastside has started a series of short videos just showing an ordinary two minutes at an ordinary corner in Los Angeles. And it works.

Pondering the age gap on 'Inception'

Patrick Goldstein admits he was left confused by "Inception," though he liked the film, and he devotes a post at The Big Picture to why the older people are, the more they hated "Inception."
melanie-polk.jpg Melanie Polk writes that "I can still remember the look on my mother's face when my father came home one day in the '70s and said, 'We're in the newspaper business.'"

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 8.3.10

Greuel on a jury, Garcetti for Echo Park lake crackdown, Whitman's amazing spending, Lakers playoff tickets for lawmakers and more.

Boyarsky a SoCal book awards finalist

inventing-la-cover.jpg LA Observed columnist Bill Boyarsky's latest book, "Inventing L.A.: The Chandlers and Their Times," has been nominated for this year's Southern California Independent Booksellers Association awards.

Lea Michele not hurt in crash she wasn't in

lea-michele-thr.jpg This Hollywood Reporter story with a "Glee" tie-in isn't a spoof, but it could be. Commenters at the THR site are brutal.

Greuel finds a way into the Bell story

City Controller Wendy Greuel issued a letter to Mayor Villaraigosa and the City Council tonight saying she is taking steps to post the salaries of all city employees on line.

Obama coming to L.A. to raise cash Aug. 16

President Obama will return to Los Angeles in two weeks for a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee fundraiser at the home of John Wells, says Ted Johnson at Variety.

LA Observed on KCRW

Last week's video of the future Expo Line route across part of the Westside is the starting point for tonight's LA Observed column on KCRW.

Morning Buzz: Monday 8.2.10

Lohan is out of jail, Bell's cops got paid well too, Gregory Rodriguez on "white racial anxiety" and affirmative action, plus rules for political tweets and media notes.

NBC 4, Steve Edwards lead the local Emmys

Channel 4's news shows picked up six statues at the Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards on Saturday night.

Reporter reflects on the Mexican border

Marc Lacey, the New York Times' new Southwest bureau chief, is coming up from Mexico City and in Sunday's Week in Review section he observes that the border is especially nasty these days.

Lindsey Lohan reportedly to be released tonight

lindsay-lohan-court.jpg The actress is said to be getting out of the Lynwood detention center sometime after midnight.

Maxine Waters to face ethics trial in fall

The Los Angeles Democrat's lawyers have said she made appeals to the Treasury Department not on behalf of OneUnited Bank, where her husband had been on the board, but on behalf of the National Bankers Association.

People who dress up in armor and reenact wars

baronesa-dulcinea.jpg enice photographer E. F. Kitchen has a new book out, Suburban Knights: A Return to the Middle Ages, exploring the activities of the Society for Creative Anachronism, whose members recreate the arts and battles of the Middle Ages.

Here's one way to trick a few readers into clicking

malnic-rush.jpg A reference to a Gold Rush miner in a Los Angeles Times column hot-links to a topic page on the metal band Rush.

A vote for bike sharing in L.A.

london-bikes.jpg Clifford V. Johnson, the blogging and bike-commuting USC professor, speaks up for bicycle sharing after seeing it in London.

Weekend obits: Keith Richman, Jon Douglas

In the San Fernando Valley secession election in 2002, state Assemblyman Keith Richman received the most votes and would have become the first mayor of the newly formed sixth-most populous U.S. city if voters had allowed the split.
Giant floating ducky
duck-tall-ships-meg.jpgThe big rubber duck was the most photographed thing about the tall ships festival recently held in San Pedro. Photo: Mayor Eric Garcetti.
City of LA historical photos
lachs-baldwin-hills.jpgMen on a storm drain project near the Baldwin Hills in the Depression. More images from newly digitized collection
LAO__Garcetti&Ballmer copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard is a regular weekly feature of LA Observed. See it bigger.
Napa quake lessons
napa-quake-street.jpgAt last we know who woke up early — and who stayed up. More
La chambre photographique
la-chambre-sb-600.jpgSanta Barbara. Click to enlarge.