Archive by Date

April 30, 2011
I guess the lede from Friday night's Los Angeles Times Book Prize ceremony is that Jennifer Egan and "A Visit From the Goon Squad" won in fiction over Jonathan Franzen's "Freedom."
April 29, 2011
I'll be signing books and having great conversations at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books from noon to 2 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. Look for me at the Angel City Press booth.
NBC 4 tonight at 11 p.m. will air an expose showing two uniformed Los Angeles Department of Transportation traffic enforcement officers appearing in a porn film.
Today's scheduled final launch of the space shuttle Endeavour was delayed at least 48 hours due to what NASA is calling "an issue with Auxiliary Power Unit 1 heaters."
The LAFD Historical Society has posted some good aerial photos of the Convention Center being expanded circa 1991 — before Staples Center or L.A. Live came to the Downtown neighborhood.
Denise Hamilton's Native Intelligence tribute to the late journalist Terry McGarry will air this weekend on KPCC's Off-Ramp, noon Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday. Off-Ramp blog Police are preparing...
April 28, 2011
LéaLA, or more properly Feria del Libro en Español de Los Angeles, is the first major Spanish-language book fair to be held here.
Sirhan Sirhan has a new story about what happened the night Sen. Robert F. Kennedy was shot at the Ambassador Hotel.
The Lakers eliminated the New Orleans Hornets 98-80 and will open the second round against Dallas at home on Monday.
The CBS News correspondent who was attacked in Cairo's Tahrir Square tells the New York Times that she was surrounded by 200-300 men who tore at her clothes, beat her and "for an extended period of time, they raped me with their hands."
he McCourts' involvement in the Dodgers, and Bud Selig's for that matter — as well as Sam Zell and Tribune's role in the Los Angeles Times — are examples of outsiders with no sense of or loyalty to the sounds and rhythms and cultures of L.A.
Villaraigosa doings, Feinstein on Trump, Capitol Weekly's top 100, Michael Kinsley, Moby — and are William and Kate coming to L.A.?
Nobody knows nuthin' yet, but the LA Weekly went ahead and asked a half-dozen local political figures to handicap the 2013 race for mayor anyway.
April 27, 2011
After his Dodgers picked up a nice win in Florida, Frank McCourt met with baseball officials in New York and came out swinging in remarks to reporters.
The Brian Setzer Orchestra with "Jump Jive An' Wail" in the old Fred Harvey diner at Union Station.
Los Angeles has Chinese restaurants, Herb Alpert, Austin Beutner and girls on quads. Miller-McCune has Lee Baca.
KPCC's John Rabe spots an amusing misspelling in a press release from the Coalition of LA City Unions.
After yesterday's posts on the Fred Harvey cafe at Union Station, blogger Scott Lowe stumbled across a Fiona Apple video shot there.
These pictures reemerge every so often, but they are always interesting. These are World War II shots of Lockheed Aircraft, a major builder of war planes at Burbank Airport,...
Deasy hires a team and pays them well, Host International is back in the game at LAX, labor concessions at City Hall, plus Crenshaw rail, Vernon, Kelly Candaele and more.
April 26, 2011
It's just coincidence I'm sure, but the same week that Eli Broad is profiled for his philanthropy on "60 Minutes," three major local gifts have been announced.
The first stages of a "narrative experience" about a fictional flood hitting Los Angeles will be unveiled at this weekend's Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC.
All the AOL Patch local news sites across the country have put out the call for bloggers to post on their community's site.
The first time I snuck into the vacated Fred Harvey cafe at Union Station, maybe 20 years ago, I could almost smell the 1940s cigar smoke. The room and adjacent...
A KPCC video crew follows around the ceremonial props we told you about last month.
A "Glee" producer and New York mayor Bloomberg have a little fun at the L.A. mayor's expense.
Climate change and water, the state of Black Los Angeles, a parking tickets audit and a new role for book agent Steve Wasserman — plus more.
The Kings were eliminated from the NHL playoffs by the San Jose Sharks on Monday night, so the hockey season in SoCal is officially over.
April 25, 2011
Frank McCourt's path back to civic grace is tough to see because in screwing up the Dodgers he didn't just disappoint, he offended.
The public TV station has agreed to sell its 4.5-acre studio lot on Sunset Boulevard to the Church of Scientology and will relocate within a year to a new production facility.
A round-up of news, politics and media notes and other observations to get the week started.
Donna Perlmutter, the former dance and music critic for the Herald Examiner and CityBeat — and freelancer for the L.A. Times and New York Times, among other places — is the newest contributor to Native Intelligence.
Mitchell joined in January and now is out. Nikki Finke and Anne Thompson report different reasons.
April 24, 2011
We have Eldon Davis to thank for many of those Googie-style coffee shops that sprouted along Southern California boulevards in the 1950s, then spread across the country.
We don't have to go halfway around the world to be horrified by killing fields and innocent people being slaughtered.
If you never saw the short-lived but very popular amusement park that was at the Ocean Park end of Santa Monica Beach — or want to see it again — check out this Nancy Sinatra video.
Jose Diance-Cruz, 23, of the Southwest station was thrown from his truck after hitting the guardrail on the eastbound Ventura Freeway at Van Nuys Boulevard.
April 23, 2011
Actually, that day will be Monday for game 6 of the Stanley Cup playoffs round.
I was quoted on camera in the "NBC Nightly News" story about the Dodgers mess Saturday, plus other news of the day.
Bluegrass legend Hazel Dickens used her music to tell people about the plight of coal miners and working women in the South, and inspired the work of Emmylou Harris and others.
April 22, 2011
Obama's menu from last night, Lohan sentenced back to county jail, and more.
The Southern California Institute of Architecture has bought the century-old former rail freight depot it occupies in the Arts District.
Davis and her writing partner Bob Carroll Jr. were writing for Lucille Ball on radio when they collaborated on a TV pilot. The rest was television history. Also: Kevin Jarre.
Good story about a sheriff's detective who was thumbing through photos of gang members and recognized a Pico Rivera murder scene tattooed on one guy's chest.
Analysis and reaction as Frank McCourt gears up to fight baseball's decision to take control of the Dodgers.
April 21, 2011
Pool reporter from the LA Times gets the name of Obama's restaurant wrong. Can't say she wasn't warned.
The artificial light we throw skyward in the city at night feeds chemical reactions that add to the haze of air pollution.
Photojournalist Jonathan Alcorn and a news crew shooting a story on paparazzi for Bloomberg News were stopped near Sunset Plaza this afternoon (presumably by sheriff's deputies), ordered to the ground and treated as felony suspects.
There is no article in Tavern, and no solid news on how to avoid traffic from president Obama's visit this evening.
The preview portrays Eli Broad as L.A.'s top philanthropist and arts patron, one who is not shy about putting his name on things.
Channel 4 morning anchor Alycia Lane just tweeted her good news.
More on President Obama's visit, baseball v. McCourt, the subsidy behind the downtown NFL stadium and Riordan's backing of Beutner, plus Rick Dees, WeHo's John J. Duran and more.
April 20, 2011
The Dodgers just released a statement from Frank McCourt. Short and sweet.
Man, so many wrinkles and angles and reactions to the stunning news that baseball has taken over control of the Dodgers from Frank McCourt.
"Pursuant to my authority as Commissioner, I informed Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt today that I will appoint a representative to oversee all aspects of the business and the day-to-day operations of the Club."
Rios, the VP and news director at Fox 11, has been named vice president of digital news applications at parent Fox Television Stations.
Hetherington's photos from Afghanistan for Vanity Fair and others formed the basis for the Oscar-nominated documentary Restrepo, which he directed which his long-time journalistic collaborator Sebastian Junger.
A year later in the Gulf, Bell's whistleblower, Villaraigosa's budget, when Obama moved to Indonesia and Grete Waitz.
Former mayor Richard Riordan will formally endorse his pal, Austin Beutner, this morning at a media op in the produce district.
President Obama is scheduled to land at LAX at about 2:45 P.M. Thursday. He then has to get to the Sony lot for a 4:30 fund-raising appearance, then up to Tavern in Brentwood for dinner and another fundraiser.
The L.A. Times opinion page has canceled the Sunday roundup of editorial cartoons that Joel Pett has done for six years-plus.
There were something like 5,000 people at the Nokia on Tuesday night to watch Tina Fey and Steve Martin mix and match wits.
April 19, 2011
That's how Fox Sports announcer Patrick O'Neal summed up tonight's L.A. Kings game.
Ex-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger "feels shitty" when he looks in the mirror, but he's happy about his accomplishments and defends reducing the prison sentence of Esteban Nunez.
Brown helps the prison guards, stadium plan would give valuable development rights to AEG, county budget talk — plus Austin Beutner, Eric Garcetti, Nate Holden, James O'Keefe and more.
April 18, 2011
Jerry Sands, the outfield prospect the Dodgers called up hoping he can add a little spark to the lineup, stroked a double to right field in his first time up in the major leagues.
Sheriff Lee Baca might be the only top law enforcement official to read and quote the Koran.
The Point, located beside the route of the Expo Line in the artsy and techy Hayden Tract section of Culver City, closed on Friday.
President Obama will visit the Sony lot in Culver City and Tavern in Brentwood to meet with Hollywood donors.
Video shot by a staffer, plus my KCRW column for tonight congratulates the paper on getting past the Sam Zell era's talk of demise.
The San Francisco Giants fan who was severely beaten outside Dodger Stadium was placed back in a medically induced coma after suffering seizures Saturday.
The Times' staff gets the public service medal for uncovering the corruption scandal in the city of Bell, and photographer Barbara Davidson wins for her images of the victims of gang violence in Los Angeles.
Sheriff Baca urges support for Trutanich as DA, Vincent Bugliosi writes about God, the Los Angeles Review of Books debuts a website, and it's Pulitzer day for the newspaper types. Plus more.
Asked which one book she would recommend to President Obama, actress Wendie Malick offered one we like here at LA Observed too.
The New Orleans Hornets came into L.A. and humbled the defending champions.
April 16, 2011
Geoff Miller was the first editor of Los Angeles, starting in 1960 when it was called The Prompter, and in 1990 became the magazine's publisher. He died Saturday at home in L.A.
Underdogs for a reason and already down one game to none, the Kings played perhaps their best game of the season and tied their Stanley Cup playoffs series against San Jose.
Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times says Frank McCourt borrowed $30 million from Fox to cover the Dodgers' first payday on Friday.
Use of the MTA's buses and trains is down about three percent compared to last year. Some data and graphs.
The latest to form a fundraising committee is Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich, who filed so he can accept checks to finance a run for District Attorney, if DA Steve Cooley decides not to seek reelection in 2012.
April 15, 2011
City News Service now says there were 46 tickets written by the LAPD and no arrests at last night's game.
No Dodger Stadium arrests, Trutanich endorses Hahn, former Daily News editor dies and public radio stations raise money for Japan. Plus more.
April 14, 2011
The weather geek who sent me this photo loves the wind vortices evident in the clouds off the Southern California coast this week. I just see a nice image.
One of the main pieces in Good magazine's new issue on Los Angeles is Dave Greene's examination of the L.A. Times after a decade of Tribune ownership and four years...
The Los Angeles Fire Department has posted four surveillance videos showing a Hollywood transient who broke into Temple Israel and apparently set a small fire in a second-floor classroom.
The son of Grouch Marx, he's known mostly for two books on his dad, sitcom work and the unauthorized and unflattering biography of Bob Hope.
ABC's announcement today that 40-year-old soap operas "All My Children" and "One Life to Live" are coming to the end isn't good news for crews numbering at least in the...
That means both editorial director Jimmy Jellinek and deputy editor Stephen Randall will be working out of the Playboy offices in Glendale.
L.A. Times Seoul bureau chief John Glionna, his driver, interpreter and another reporter rolled up the windows in an SUV, closed the vents and drove toward the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
It gives us an idea of how he will portray himself — his campaign is "grassroots," of course, and he loves the city and has a "proven track record."
With today's news that Austin Beutner will file as a candidate for mayor, and his exit as a top deputy to Mayor Antonio Villaraigoisa, Los Angeles magazine picked a good time for its profile of Beutner.
State of the city reactions, Dodgers come home to new security, Leiweke lashes out and more.
April 13, 2011
Michael Connelly's newest, "The Fifth Witness," arrives at number one on the fiction hardcover list for Southern California independent bookstores. Tina Fey tops nonfiction books with "Bossypants."
'SoCal Connected' ties together two stories — on the animal rights activists who terrorize UCLA researchers and the clashes involving movie and TV characters who wait for tourists outside Hollywood and Highland — into an episode with a limits-of-free-speech theme.
Mary Matalin sits in for Arianna Huffington these days.
As part of the response to the Bryan Stow beating, the Dodgers had been thinking about whether to exclude alcohol from the half-price promotions offered at six day games this season.
Lots of politics and media notes, plus the artwork hidden in Woody Woodpecker cartoons and Flip cameras RIP.
Sidney Harman died last night in Washington of complications from acute myeloid leukemia, a disease he was diagnosed with a month ago.
April 12, 2011
The FBI says that David Deng tricked Chinese nationals into paying him $300 and up (plus annual renewals) to enlist in what he called an elite U.S. special forces unit that operated out a storefront in Temple City.
Turns out that former Los Angeles City Councilman Joel Wachs was instrumental in getting Ackerman Student Union built.
Paramount said today it has optioned the movie rights to Ray Bradbury's classic 1950 short story collection.
A federal bankruptcy court judge unsealed an "explosive" 400-page court report on the affairs of film executive David Bergstein and his associate Ronald Tutor — then resealed the report. While it was available, the media got a look.
The suit against the Dodgers' top McCourt-in-residence, by the Boston-based law firm that made the big gaffe enshrined in McCourt v. McCourt, "is the strangest damned thing to read," writes Gene Maddaus of the LA Weekly.
Pretty cool news about the space shuttle Endeavour being retired to the California Science Center after its final flight.
NPR's Ombudsman says KPCC acted on its own to pull Planned Parenthood spots, and could have explained it better.
Ticket quotas, lawmaker gifts, more reaction to the death of Kam Kuwata and the Webby nominations, plus more media notes.
April 11, 2011
Federal officials say Ron Hirsch, 60, was arrested Monday night in Cleveland.
L.A. Day/L.A. Night features 30 aerial images of the city by photographer and pilot Michael Light. The book's introduction by Los Angeles Times critic David L. Ulin observes that "daylight...
Before the game in San Francisco, the Giants and Dodgers gathered on the field to stand for a moment of silence in honor of injured fan Bryan Stow. Then the players spoke to the fans.
Kam Kuwata, a Democratic campaign strategist in California for at least 25 years, was found dead in his Venice condo Monday.
John Lippman, editor of the Company Town report, is moving his family to New Hampshire to work at a small newspaper that isn't on the web in a town that's not obsessed with Hollywood.
In this week's New Yorker, author Jonathan Franzen writes about his personal retreat to the South Pacific island that likely provided the setting for "Robinson Crusoe."
Northeastern Japan endured another 7.1 magnitude aftershock on Monday afternoon.
The most pointed barbs were by Jon Wiener, the author and UC Irvine historian (plus KPFK commentator) who blogs for The Nation.
A summary of news, notes and observations to kick off the week.
April 10, 2011
Mayor Villaraigosa will return to an old theme in this week's State of the City speech, plus Joe Scott retires.
Daily News columnist Dennis McCarthy writes "when I arrived at the Daily News 30 years ago this month, I had dark hair, a flat stomach, and the stamina to chase stories all day and night. Five thousand plus columns later, what's left of the hair is white, I've got a pot belly, and need a nap after lunch."
The county Board of Supervisors might just have some surprise jurisdiction over AEG's plan for a football stadium next to Staples Center, a Times reporter found.
Metro's blog The Source has become in 18 months one of the MTA's main ways of exciting the base of L.A. transit enthusiasts and responding to rail critics. Now the...
Valley boosters used to take pride in the stat that Van Nuys Airport was the busiest in the country, due mostly to all the private pilots and students who flew there. Now traffic has fallen to 1963 levels.
At least eight ailing sea lions were rescued along the coast this weekend, including this one at Santa Monica Beach.
April 9, 2011
Click on the map above to see the street closures for Sunday's second CicLAvia.
The best documentary I've seen this year, on the octogenarian New York Times street photographer who rides his bike around Manhattan, has escaped the Nuart ghetto.
Sidney Lumet debuted in 1957 with "12 Angry Men," directed "Dog Day Afternoon," "Serpico" and "Network" later in his career, and was nominated four times for Oscars.
April 8, 2011
Scientific American has dug out of its files a 1901 story and photographs about interesting rock features on the Southern California coast, including the arch rock north of Santa Monica.
BNill Boyarsky remembers the founder of the Los Angeles Tribune.
Clearing out the backlog, with more to come.
Dive school at Chino is "perhaps the most unusual prison job rehab program in the country." Watch the video.
NBC 4 bills this as a photo from this morning of cash changing hands — literally — between an FBI agent and a Los Angeles city building inspector.
Stay away from Chavez Ravine on these half-price beer days, says Oscar Garza. broke its own new records for page views (195.2 million) and unique visitors (33 million) in March.
It appears that Manny Ramirez got caught on a drug test again this spring. Facing a 100-game suspension, he retired from the Tampa Bay Rays.
Spots that credit Planned Parenthood as a sponsor of KPCC programming will be pulled off the air during the government shutdown debate in Washington.
Kerry Cavanaugh noted in her column yesterday in the Daily News that Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa isn't the only City Hall politico to pay a price for taking free tickets (though...
It's confirmation, if you needed any, that the beating of a Giants fan and the spreading perception of a violent tone at the stadium is a big issue that City Hall and the Dodgers hope to contain.
Dawn Hudson, who has run Film Independent since 1991, will take over as CEO of the academy.
Richard Engel, the NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent, will receive the L.A. Press Club's 2011 Daniel Pearl Award for Courage and Integrity on June 26th at the Millennium Biltmore.
The mega Tower Lane construction project was withdrawn Thursday by the owner.
April 7, 2011
A Los Angeles Fire Department urban search and rescue team went out today to clean graffiti off the rock beside the 134 freeway that gives Eagle Rock its name. See the photo.
Since nothing else is getting done in Sacramento, they may as well as fill some openings.
L.A. sits out trend on nonwhite children, more Grim Sleeper victims, Abby Sunderland's book, LACMA partners with New York Times, Nikki Finke plans her return and more.
Nancy Rommelmann in town to read and sign her novel, plus Gary Leonard and Deanne Stillman.
Bloggers for Forbes aren't rewarded financially for improving their writing, breaking some hard-to-get news or making an especially salient or persuasive argument — on anything about putting out a quality product. They are rewarded strictly for attracting unique visitors.
April 6, 2011
David Folkenflik's piece for All Things Considered on NPR thing put a different sparkle on the story.
It's hard to know whether ex-LAPD chief William Bratton and Kroll, where he is chairman, will be actual security advisers or they are there as Frank McCourt's latest in a series of image consultants.
April 5, 2011
Our friends at Los Angeles are up for three National Magazine Awards: general excellence, leisure interests and Ben Ehrenreich in feature writing for his piece on dying in L.A. David...
There's less web access in the Santa Ynez Valley than I expected. Up here for a couple of days. Posting will be spotty. Be sure to check in with Mark...
April 4, 2011
My topic tonight is LACMA on its 46th anniversary, with mentions of the David Smith sculpture exhibit that opened this weekend and the new book from Angel City Press on...
The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books is at USC this year, pushed back a week to April 30 and May 1.
Steve Jenkins is in surgery in "very guarded" condition after being shot in the face on Dronfield Avenue, LAPD chief Charlie Beck announced.
Laurie Pike out as Style Editor at Los Angeles magazine, Rick Orlov's Tipoffs and more media and politics notes. Plus a programming note.
Entertainment blogger Nikki Finke may be on medical leave, but a post she put up — then took down — has prompted renewed talk of "Crazy Nikki" and "Hollywood’s leading internet terrorist."
April 3, 2011
While Sheen risks the livelihood of everyone at his show, Tina Fey lists as her greatest achievement "providing 200 people with a nice place to work."
The mainstream media sent real critics to the Charlie Sheen tour's opening night in Detroit, for whatever reason. It didn't take their experience to know it went very, very badly. But better tonight in Chicago.
A network executive, "who spoke on condition of anonymity because Couric has not officially announced her plans," reported the move to Associated Press on Sunday night,
Los Angeles and San Francisco leaders issue a joint statement, but will it be enough to assure fans who are leery of Dodger Stadium violence?
April 2, 2011
Archbishop Jose Gomez and Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani of Lima, Peru visited Lakers practice this week for chats and pictures with Pau Gasol, Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson.
Mayor Villaraigosa's negotiated deal with the FPPC to pay a $42,000 fine over not reporting free tickets "highlights the need for that agency to clarify its regulations," says Laurie Levinson of Loyola law school. Plus more
April 1, 2011
Veteran L.A. journalist and author Al Martinez has been keeping readers up to date on his daughter Cinthia's cancer in his Daily News columns.
Everything around the LAX retail concessions is about politics and the practice of influence — do you think services that disappointing and overpriced would fly in the real world?
Sites getting a jump on April Fool's Day.
Five planes designed by Mojave aeronautical engineer Burt Rutan hang in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
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2:57 PM Thu | Kim Murphy to run both Foreign and National, Shelby Grad takes over Metro, Ashley Dunn moves to National and Brandi Grissom joins the Times from the Texas Tribune.
Mark Lacter, LA Biz Observed
2:07 PM Sat | The funeral for Mark Lacter will be held Sunday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles 90045. Reception to follow.

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