LA Observed archive
for January 2013

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ABGomez-pulpit.jpg The Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles moved Thursday to take back the sexual abuse scandal, releasing thousands of pages of unredacted files and expressing sorrow for the victims. In the most dramatic event of the day, Archbishop José H. Gomez posted a letter to the church community that called the sexual abuse "terribly sad and evil." He informed the area's Catholics that he has stripped Cardinal Roger Mahony of any further duties with the church, "administrative or public," and accepted the resignation of Mahony's former aide who oversaw the response to years of sexual abuse allegations.

Morning Buzz: Thursday 1.31.13

cornfield-lao.jpg Archdiocese gives up on blacking out names, Greuel's claims still in dispute, Greuel and Garcetti get endorsements, Boxer urges Villaraigosa to go for Transportation secretary, Cornfield plan a winner, Tuiasosopo says he fell in love with Te'o and burglars targeted LAT subscribers who went on vacation.

Register's 'Aaron Quixote' and his curious quest

aaron-quixote.jpg Longtime Orange County Register editor Chris Smith tries to make sense of the Aaron Kushner phenomenon that is making over the OC newspaper and giving hope to unemployed journalists across the LA area. Smith writes in the new issue of Orange Coast magazine.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 1.30.13

zooey-d-law.jpg No SEIU endorsement for mayor candidates, they bore Steve Lopez, celebrities such as Zooey Deschanel take sides, analyzing the chiefs of staff, ex-governors talk about immigration, KCET partners with Writers Bloc, the Sierra snow pack is below average and La Cienega reopens. Plus more.

Judge Hahn sounds pretty happy not to be running

Thumbnail image for judge-jim-hahn.jpg Ex-mayor Jim Hahn is handling small claims cases in the Santa Monica courthouse, living nearby with his wife and enjoying not being in the spotlight. "It's a pretty great thing to be mayor of Los Angeles," Hahn tells KCRW's Saul Gonzalez. But, "I have to say this is the happiest time of my life."

Salma Hayek: 'So this guy, Eric Garcetti...'

salma-for-eric-garcetti.jpg Salma Hayek endorses Eric Garcetti for mayor: "He has the heart of a hero. He's romantic..." She also cites that he plays piano, gardens, cooks and speaks Spanish and French as well as English. Watch the video.

Greuel's first TV spot harkens back to controller audits

wendy-greuel-spot-grab.jpg Wendy Greuel's platform to run for mayor is that, as city controller, the audits by her office found $160 million "in waste and fraud." It's the theme of her first 30-second spot going on the air today. Watch here.

Tribune names Eddie Lazarus as general counsel

Eddie Lazarus has a been a federal prosecutor in Los Angeles, as well as a some-time book reviewer and op-ed contributor to the Los Angeles Times. He also went to Yale with new Tribune CEO Peter Liguori, and perhaps most important he is deeply connected at the Federal Communications Commission.

The plot thickens: LaHood steps down as transportation secretary

Not every single story story out of Washington on Ray LaHood leaving the Obama Cabinet mentions Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa as a possible successor. Just most of them.

Rescue center gets and releases an albatross

albatross9.jpg Watch video of the International Bird Rescue Center releasing a healthy Laysan Albatross outside the breakwater at San Pedro.

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 1.29.13

Thumbnail image for sepulveda-wildlife-damage-a.jpg Reportage on last night's mayoral debate, Greuel hits the airwaves, going for the women and Jewish vote, more Campaign 2013 coverage, admitting an error in the Sepulveda Dam wildlife area, earthquake warnings and more.

Tyrone Ricky Freeman convicted of embezzling from union

Tyrone Ricky Freeman, the former president of Service Employees International Union locals 6434 and 434-B, was convicted Monday on federal charges of embezzling tens of thousands of dollars from the union that represents home healthcare workers. "This was a case about abuse and betrayal,” said U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr. of Los Angeles.

Burbank lion cubs are doing pretty well

lion-olive.jpg You may remember the hungry mountain lion cubs that were collected from under a parked car in Burbank in late 2011. They are now big cats living in a facility in Paso Robles and being trained to educate school kids.

LAT adds to 'Company Town' staff

DanielMiller.jpg The LA Times hires Daniel Miller from the Hollywood Reporter, per today's memo to the staff from the assistant managing editor for entertainment coverage.

Morning Buzz: Monday 1.28.13

amer-apparel-mannequins-cur.jpg Justice Sotomayor packs them in, the day Zev Yaroslavsky posed as "Bob Price" to talk to Stan Musial, Mahony's legacy tarnished, high speed rail questions, American Apparel's mannequin warehouse and more.

Monday campaign wrap-up: Foxes, thrilling action and more

cd3-lat-map.gif Fred Davis posts his first hit video on Garcetti, Greuel and Perry, plus barreling across the Valley with Dennis Zine at the wheel and Monday is TV debate night.

Editor reevaluates downtown after getting mugged

arts-district-dtla-lao.jpg Dan Evans, the editor of the Times Community News papers, moved downtown from the Burbank area about six months ago to try living in the Arts District. Sounds like he mostly liked it until last Sunday night, when he was mugged about midnight near Sci-Arc. Now he caries a socket wrench.

USC professor on being both successful and schizophrenic

elyn-saks-usc.jpg USC law professor Elyn R. Saks, author of the memoir, “The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness,” writes in Sunday's New York Times from her perspective that "the seeds of creative thinking may sometimes be found in mental illness." Her experience as a sufferer of schizophrenia is that while she needs medication and professional care, she also needs to work. "My mind, I have come to say, is both my worst enemy and my best friend."

'Argo' and Jennifer Lawrence closing in on the prize

Tonight at the Screen Actors Guild awards, "Argo" delivered another warning that, yes, it well could take the best picture Oscar next month. Lawrence bested Jessica Chastain and Naomi Watts.

Fake books for the movie industry

faux-library-valleywood.jpg Vose Street in North Hollywood is a workaday LA industrial street under the final approach path for jets landing at Bob Hope Airport. Valleywood shops and services, the Doc Johnson factory for rubber sex toys, and a mysterious driveway marked Faux Library.

Lakers show some life, beat OKC

lakers-espn-la-grab12713.jpg They actually played together on offense and defense and defeated the NBA-best Oklahoma City Thunder 105-96.

LANG publisher donates $750 to Kevin James

Jack Klunder, the president of the Los Angeles News Group and publisher of most if not all of the chain's newspapers, is not a voter in the city of Los Angeles. But he has given $750 to mayoral candidate Kevin James, in three separate contributions since 2011, and also reportedly provided him with tickets to Lakers, Dodgers and Kings games.

Villaraigosa spokesman moves on to next gig

mav-teddy-davis-crop.jpg Teddy Davis, a top press spokesman for Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa since 2011, was announced today as the director of strategic communications for Maryland governor Martin O'Malley. Expect to see a series of these exits in the coming months.

Morning Buzz: Getting better Friday (1.25.13)

Thumbnail image for variety-sign-300.jpg Finke says the axe is coming for Variety, the newsonomics of selling the LA Times, the Times finally names its foreign editor, new numbers in the mayoral race, Kevin James softens his conservative tone and a new tenant for Junior's Deli. Plus more.

Uh oh: Metro now naming stations to honor people

joel-wachs-square-sign.jpg Pity the poor tourists of the future. One of the most minor-league things about Los Angeles is that today's politicians too easily give in to the urge to name things — buildings, freeway legs, intersections — for people. Alive or dead, famous or not.

Laura Chick endorses Galperin for controller

Thumbnail image for laura-chick-red.jpg The reason that the office of city controller is viewed as a fiscal watchdog and audit factory is due largely to Laura Chick, who came before Wendy Greuel. Chick's endorsement helps City Hall newcomer Ron Galperin.

Los Angeles basin from space makes an awesome photo

hadfield-sfbay.jpg Canadian astronaut on the International Space Station makes his second appearance of the week on LA Observed. Wait until you see his shot of San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate inside.

Sick day around here

Sorry, these things happen. Posting will continue to be sporadic this week.

Century City parking is going to cost you

century-city-parking-fa.jpg The Westfield mall at Century City is dropping out of the ranks of Los Angeles malls that let you park free for at least a couple of hours. Starting Feb. 1, it's going to cost a dollar an hour — up to three hours. After that, it's a dollar for every fifteen minutes.

Jane Glenn Haas, OC journalist was 75

jane-haas-ocr.jpg Haas was a reporter and columnist at the Orange County Register for more than 20 years, a publicist for the Irvine Company, a book reviewer for Orange Coast magazine and a nationally syndicated columnist on aging and women's issues — and more.

Guess which other big catastrophe awaits California (again)

sacramento-flood-1862.jpg We know about the deal we make with earthquakes, but the biggest catastrophes through time in California have actually been storms. There's only been one on the epic scale since statehood, but a story in the new Scientific American says the next time will be worse for us.

Prius is top-selling new car in California — and only here

prius-2012-black.jpg In the rest of the United States, the best selling new vehicle is the Ford F-series pickup truck. In California the Prius has surpassed the Honda Civic to be number one.

Facing 50, LA editor decides to work out

amy-wallace-kick-segal.jpg Amy Wallace, an editor at Los Angeles magazine, is going to get ready for her birthday party by living a life that many fantasize about: working out every day just like it was a job. She wants to walk into the party "a taut, 140-pound warrior-goddess."

Explaining the roots and success of CicLAvia

CicLAvia-October-2012-zocalo.jpg In a piece for Zocalo called "I Blocked Off Wilshire and Angelenos Loved It," Aaron Paley talks about when he and his wife saw the beneficial effects of Bogota's street-closing ciclovía and how the Los Angeles version came to happen here.

Live fire exercise at Twentynine Palms

marine-exercise-mccarthy.jpg Some 500 members of the 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines from Camp Pendleton took part in live weapons training this week at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center near Twentynine Palms.

Late-night White House after party has LA flavor

thr-power-lunch-cover.jpg Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Councilman Eric Garcetti and labor leader Maria Elena Durazo were among the select partiers. Inauguration celebrants danced past 3 a.m. to "Love Train" and "We Are Family."

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 1.23.13

mark-miller-thr.jpg No charges expected out of Cardinal Mahony files, county assessor may get out of jail on rules change, candidate Kevin James doesn't mind being confused with the actor, why the media no longer fear Scientology, the Dodgers make up with Sandy Koufax, and THR grabs a deputy editor from Newsweek.

Mayoral race roundup: a long weekend

lat--mayoral-videos.jpg Diversity makes the news, Times video of the candidates, a media coverage roundup and more — including a wonderful Steve Lopez line summarizing Antonio Villaraigosa.

Sacramento likely to lose its NBA team

chris-hansen-mug.jpeg The owners of the Sacramento Kings, the Maloof family, made official what has been talked about and feared by many around the state capital. They are selling the team to a group headed by Seattle investor Chris Hansen, who hopes to move the team by next season and call it the Sonics.
mahony-on-pc.jpg Documents ordered released from the sexual abuse files of the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles are starting to get out. The lede of the LA Times story goes right to Cardinal Mahony's involvement.

Space view of San Diego and Tijuana

san-diego-space-hatfield.jpg Commander Chris Hadfield, a Canadian astronaut in Earth orbit aboard the International Space Station, has been tweeting eye-catching photos of points all across the planet.

Hanging no deterrent for LAT reporter in Iran

hanged-iran-fars.jpg At the end of the Los Angeles Times story about two young street muggers being hanged in public in Tehran on Sunday, there's a surprise.

Golden Mikes for NBC 4, KPCC, Steve Edwards

rtna-logo-crop.jpg Channel 4 won two Golden Mike awards last night for best TV newscast, and AM radio stations KNX and KFI won for the best radio newscasts. KPCC-FM won the most awards overall, ten Golden Mikes in a variety of categories. Steve Edwards, the longtime host of "Good Day LA" on Fox 11, picked up the lifetime achievement award from the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California.

Celebrate January and MLK Day with a swim

annenberg-pool-jan2013.jpg Remember how the big news in Los Angeles just last weekend was the cold? This winter weekend, the swimming pool at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica is adding extra hours for Martin Luther King Day.

Andrea Alarcon to resign from City Hall post

Thumbnail image for andrea-alarcon-fb.jpg The president of the Board of Public Works apologized for unspecified actions and said she has learned that her top job is "being a mom." Possible prosecution still looms for leaving her 11-year-daughter alone in City Hall to go drinking on a Friday night.

KPCC newsroom votes to unionize over top talents' objection

kpcc-logo-2013.jpg After months of campaigning, the KPCC newsroom staff voted 35 to 26 to join SAG-AFTRA. Hosts Larry Mantle and John Rabe were among the senior talent who argued against the union.

Morning Buzz: Mostly politics for Friday 1.18.13

greuel-garcetti.jpg Greuel becomes the target, Jan Perry profiled, HuffPost editor gushes for Garcetti and more, including the sheriff's want to talk to Robert Wagner and LA's bike parking plan.

Lu Parker flies with Peter Pan (video)

The Pantages has put up a Channel 5 story on reporter Lu Parker getting harnessed up to fly like Cathy Rigby does in the upcoming production of Peter Pan.

Inside Billy Wilder's Wilshire Boulevard co-op

wilder-apt-curbed.jpg Billy and Audrey Wilder lived for decades in the Wilshire Terrace co-op building in the Platinum Mile stretch of Wilshire Boulevard between Westwood and Beverly Hills. The apartment is on the market for $1.049 million, with monthly homeowner dues of $2,812, says Curbed LA.

New CEO named at Tribune, old publisher at Times

latentrance.jpg As expected, the new board of Tribune today named Peter Liguori as chief executive officer. The company's press release is warm towards the previous CEO, Eddy Hartenstein, who goes back to being just publisher of the Los Angeles Times and head of the paper's media group. Here are the company-wide (and newsroom) memos from Liguori and Hartenstein, and the press release.

Whale of the day: Mom saves calf from orcas

gray-whale-orcas.jpg The latest Pacific observation, from the waters around the Chanel Islands National Marine Sanctuary off Ventura County: a migrating gray whale protecting her newborn calf in a 20 to 30 minute battle in view of spectators on board a boat from Oxnard. Survival of the fittest.

Rick Reilly now knows he was Armstrong's chump

Sports writers, of course, aren't the only journalists who claim to know that their favorite sources and heroes are honest and, above all, wouldn't lie to them. The big sports stories of this week serve as painful reminders that the media are all too willing to build up people they know know little about for the sake of the story — and it's only getting worse as more web "content producers" get rewarded for eyeballs and going viral but not for, you know, being right. Today it's Rick Reilly's turn to admit that when he was defending Lance Armstrong through the years, he didn't actually know bupkus.

Morning Buzz: Thursday politics and much more

garcetti-vny-lao.jpg Mayoral candidates in Sherman Oaks, Garcetti at Van Nuys Airport, city attorney candidates favor gun controls, mayor endorses Matt Szabo, Alex Sanchez a free man, state dings Army Corps for Sepulveda Dam clearing and more.

LA Times posts a Sports reporter opening *

This one is open to staffers and non-staffers. "Someone who is as comfortable and proficient writing for the front page of the paper as for the Sports section," says the sports editor. "Skill in all aspects of digital journalism and a strong background in social media are required."

Greuel gets Police Protective League endorsement *

greuel-garcetti.jpg The union representing rank-and-file LAPD officers today gave its mayoral nod to Controller Wendy Greuel.

LA County pays to fly hit and run victim home to India

makhija.jpg Vishal Makhija was put onto a special medical plane at LAX today for a flight home to Mumbai, almost nine months after he was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver in Boyle Heights. Los Angeles County is paying the $19,200 cost — and considers it a bargain.

Big hoax in college football with a local angle

manti-deadspin.jpg Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o came close to winning the Heisman Trophy with an inspiring backstory about his Stanford girlfriend, Lennay Kekua, dying tragically of leukemia. Deadspin says she never existed, but instead was the creation of a former Lancaster area prep football player who used the Facebook photo of a South Bay woman to perpetrate a massive Internet and media hoax.

Could the vacancy Villaraigosa needs be opening up?

mavillaraigosa-dc-msnbc.jpg Kitty Felde, KPCC's reporter in Washington, connects the dots and sees an opportunity for Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in the second Obama Administration, "should his personal life survive the vetting process."

BuzzFeed bureau adds Adam Vary to cover film

hollywood-sign-oh-vdt.jpg The Los Angeles bureau of BuzzFeed continues to ramp up. Today Richard Rushfield et al are announcing the hire of Adam Vary as senior film reporter. He comes from the...

Unsung hero of drivers at 7th and Broadway

buses-7th-broadway.jpg If you don't get a $234 LAPD ticket this year for turning right at 7th Street and Broadway, you could have D.J. Prator to thank. He lives near the corner and noticed that LAPD traffic officers were always writing tickets there. Thus began a little crusade. Story on 'SoCal Connected.'

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 1.16.13

rastbound-10-truck-lao.jpg Brad Sherman feeling the chill of revenge, Supes delay stormwater tax and City Council defers street tax, Villaraigosa to discuss gun violence this afternoon, city attorney debate, DMV study of unlicensed drivers, new CEO for THR, Dunkin' Donuts coming to SoCal and Jackie Lacey gets her first commencement date.

Film culture’s obsession with the LA architecture of John Lautner

sheats-goldstein-house-dani.jpg In the new issue of VQR, the Virginia Quarterly Review, Los Angeles journalist Adam Baer (with photographer Elizabeth Daniels) explores his own and Hollywood's draw to LA architecture, especially the modern works of Lautner.

Street view of new Century Plaza Hotel

century-plaza-entry-plaza.jpg The City Council on Tuesday gave final approval for that $2 billion development around the Century Plaza Hotel in Century City. Here are details and what the front of the hotel would look like.

Huell Howser's death certificate cites metastatic prostate cancer

The Riverside County death certificate for Huell Howser says that the television host and producer died early on the morning of January 7 from metastatic prostate cancer. Howser was cremated and his remains scattered off the coast of Los Angeles County on Jan. 9.

Last man out of Parker Center turns off the lights

parker-center-city-hall-lapl.jpg The final occupants of Parker Center moved out last Friday and today LAPD officials ceremonially closed the headquarters where Bill Parker vowed to stop the mob and Joe Friday lectured many seasons worth of Dragnet bad guys. Read or listen to the departrment's end of watch message.

Fred Harvey cafe at Union Station still looking for operator

fred-harvey-franklin-ave.jpg One of the most potentially cool spots to locate a restaurant in Los Angeles could be moving closer to opening. But we have heard this before. Check out Fiona Apple in the space.

Garcetti taking questions today on Reddit's LA page

garcetti-reddit.jpg Mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti is sitting today for what the Reddit online community calls an AMA. He posted about two hours ago: "Hi I'm Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles City Councilmember and candidate for Mayor. Ask me anything. I will be back around 4:00 PT to answer your questions."

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 1.15.13

richard-alarcon-2013-dn.jpg Arrests in Nordstrom Rack robbery-assault, Murdoch quips about buying the LA Times, The Atlantic pulls sponsored blog post extolling Scientology, Councilman Alarcon says son is homeless in the Valley, Ace Smith to run independent expenditure campaign for Greuel, Lady of the Lake returns to Echo Park Lake and more.

"The Simpsons" honor Huell Howser

huell-simpsons.jpg This ran on this week's episode of "The Simpson's." Hat tip to KCET on Facebook. There is a sunset memorial to Howser scheduled this afternoon at Griffith Observatory.

Jimmy O'Neill, DJ and 'Shindig' host was 73

jimmy-oneill-yt.jpg O'Neill gained a measure of Los Angeles radio immortality when he became the first voice heard on KRLA when the AM station switched to rock and roll (from country western music) in 1959. He went on to become LA's top radio deejay, then at age 24 went national as the host of ABC's short-lived rock music show "Shindig" in 1964. Here's some video.

Mayor talks up immigration in DC, says he will be there a lot

mavillaraigosa-dc-msnbc.jpg Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa did the talk show circuit in Washington on Sunday, then spent Monday there talking about immigration reform and telling reporters and Latino leaders that they will likely be seeing a lot more of him. He again evaded questions about taking a job with the Obama Administration, but KPCC's Kitty Felde said that as Villaraigosa listed what he's proud of doing here in LA, he "sounded more like he was auditioning for a job."

In Hollywood, China's censors increasingly call the shots

iron-man-3.jpg Hollywood studios are playing ball to ensure access to the billions of dollars that await films that become hits in the world's most populous country. A story in the New York Times says the cooperation includes letting China's censors vet scripts, visit sets here in the U.S. and give suggestions on other creative decisions.
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for lance-armstrong-bw-hissite.jpg It sounds as if one of the great lying acts in the history of sports will come to an end in Oprah Winfrey's televised interview with Lance Armstrong.

Sandi Gibbons retiring from DA's office

Sandi-Gibbons.jpg Gibbons, a public information officer for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office for 24 years, announced today she will be retiring on March 31. She was a former courthouse reporter.

Latest Natalie Wood autopsy reading still inconclusive

Thumbnail image for natalie-wood-wagner.jpg The LA Coroner's office relooked at the death of Natalie Wood last year and changed the cause of her 1981 death in the water off Catalina Island from accidental to undetermined. That's still where it stands, meaning that sheriff's homicide detectives carry the case as open.

LA Youth to publish final issue, ending 25 years

save-LAYouth.jpg Regrettable news from Donna Myrow, who founded L.A. Youth as a newspaper written by and for Los Angeles teenagers 25 years ago. It has been a struggle to keep the paper going in recent years. A desperate fundraising pitch last year bought some more time. But a note in the upcoming February issue will announce that L.A. Youth is closing down. Here is Myrow's note in the final issue.

Morning Buzz: Monday 1.14.13 crime roundup and Sam Zell

snow-from-roof-lao.jpg Coldest Jan. 14 on record in downtown, arrests in the Nordstrom Rack robbery, a four-part series on Sam Zell's reign at Tribune and a new map for CicLAvia. Plus Montebello goes all San Fernando on us.

Leon Leyson, 83, the youngest survivor on Schindler's List

leon-leyson.jpg Leon Leyson, who died Saturday in Whittier, was not quite ten years old when the Nazis invaded Poland and pushed his family into the Krakow ghetto. He taught at Huntington Park High School for nearly four decades without talking much about his Holocaust experiences.

Lalo Alcaraz cartoon slips into '60 Minutes'

liljudglopez.jpg When Supreme Court justice Sonia Sotomayor was interviewed on Sunday night's "60 Minutes," a finely tuned eye could have spotted a cartoon by LA's Lalo Alcaraz hanging on her office wall. He gives some backstory.

Monday politics: DN's nittier, grittier Greuel plus a lot more

city-council-1933.jpg Daily News profiles Greuel, Perry hangs in, the mayor's hollow claim on LAPD strength, the energizer mayor and more notes for a Monday.

SPJ chapter discovers 'unauthorized withdrawals' from bank

SPJ-LA-logo.jpg The board of the local Society of Professional Journalists chapter announced after a special weekend meeting that "information had surfaced showing unauthorized withdrawals had been made from the chapter’s checking account." Sarah Baisley, the chapter’s treasurer for many years, was "removed from her position."

Did Jodie Foster come out on the Golden Globes telecast?

jodie-foster-globes-abc.jpg Well, yes. Foster acknowledges "one of the deepest loves of my life, my heroic co-parent, my ex-partner in love but righteous soul sister in life...Cydney Bernard," and says this isn't really coming out because "I already did my coming out about a thousand years ago." The media are unclear how to play it.

Harry Carey Jr. remembered as the last Hollywood cowboy

Thumbnail image for harry-carey-jr-rifleman.jpg Director Peter Bogdanovich wrote a short tribute for Saturday's memorial for the actor Harry Carey, Jr., who had been the last surviving member of director John Ford's company of western actors. "A solid professional, but also a brilliantly deadpan, hilarious raconteur of the days of the giants in pictures."

Kimmel calls on America to pray for freezing LA (video)

Temperatures have plunged into the 40s and the local news is freaking out.

Henry's Tacos signs and menus already history

henrys-stripped-gary.jpg By the time Gary Leonard got over there today, the period signage that a lot people liked about Henry's Tacos in Studio City had been taken down. Same with the old menu boards above the front window.

Fans get out early for hockey's return to LA

kings-camp-crowd-11312-lao.jpg The Los Angeles Kings hit the ice Sunday morning at 10 a.m. for the first time since winning the Stanley Cup last June. A couple hundred fans were at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo to watch the first formal workout of pre-season training camp and hook up with friends.

Trying to save the citrus with old technology

smudge-pots-patch.jpg Citrus growers in the Inland Empire fired up seldom-used smudge pots, ran water in the orchards and tried to create wind between the trees in desperate moves on Saturday night and this morning to protect the fruit from freezing temperatures. Smoke could be seen rising this morning from burners in citrus areas such as Redlands and Mentone.

NYT observes Huell, Kobe, Glorya Kaufman

huell-rabe.jpg Big weekend for Angelenos in the New York Times, including an obituary of Huell Howser. Plus: Kobe and Vanessa back together.

Lance Armstrong to confess some to Oprah, reports say

Thumbnail image for lance-armstrong-bw-hissite.jpg Discredited cycling champion Lance Armstrong reportedly will tape an interview with Oprah Winfrey in Texas on Monday and "give a limited confession to Winfrey and will not provide details of the doping that antidoping officials have said occurred throughout his cycling career," reports the New York Times reporter who got the scoop last weekend that Armstrong was considering changing his tune.

Aaron Swartz, tech prodigy was 26

aaron-swartz-boingboing.jpg Aaron Swartz, who as a teenager helped create RSS, then went on to become a folk hero for Internet users who believe information should be free online, was found hanged in his New York City apartment. He had faced a federal trial on charges of wire fraud and computer fraud in connection with the downloading of millions of documents from an MIT database.

Need a calendar? Cops and their rescue dogs

lapd-rescue-dogs.jpg The Voice For The Animals Foundation has put out a 2013 calendar featuring LAPD officers with their own rescue animals. Proceeds go for medical treatment, food and shelter for animals. Chief Beck is on the cover.

Mayor's race Friday: Presidents dead and alive *

What you need to know about the fundraising race, coveting Obama and the Clintons, talking about housing, Greuel moves into South LA and more from around the campaigns.

Saturday is the final day for Henry's Tacos *

henrys-tacos.jpg Owner Janis Hood said Friday that a potential sale of her family's 51-year-old business in Studio City fell through. She announced she will open at 9 a.m. on Saturday and go until the food runs out, or until 9 p.m.

Grauman's Chinese sells naming rights, but will anyone honor it? *

super-heroes-graumans.jpg I suspect Angelenos will still call it Grauman's Chinese. TCL Chinese Theatre just doesn't have that certain something.

Morning Buzz: Friday 1.11.13

Thumbnail image for sepulveda-wildlife-damage-a.jpg Hostages freed at Nordstrom Rack, lawyer for Mexican Mafia jailed, police downplay lewd conduct in the Sepulveda Dam Basin, Sheila Kuehl running for supervisor, Yaroslavsky blogs about Huell Howser and more.

Barry Lopez on being molested as a boy in the Valley *

barry-lopez-mug.jpg Acclaimed author Barry Lopez lives now in Oregon, but he grew up in the San Fernando Valley in the 1940s and 50s. He writes in this month's Harper's about being sexually abused for four years by a North Hollywood sanitarium doctor who pretended to court his divorced mother.

Jenni Rivera's company sued by crash victims' families

Thumbnail image for jenni-rivera-smile.jpg The suit names Jenni Rivera Enterprises Inc. as well as the owners of the rented Learjet that crashed Dec. 9 in Mexico.

Villaraigosa endorses Feuer for city attorney, not Trutanich

Carmen Trutanich is, of course, the incumbent city attorney. I guess those future meetings with the mayor's office will be kind of chilly.

Junior Seau had traumatic brain disease

Thumbnail image for Screen shot 2012-05-02 at 12.40.32 PM.png Scientists who did not know they were studying the brain of retired football star Junior Seau concluded that he suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative disease typically caused by multiple hits to the head.

Affleck, Bigelow, Bond and Cotillard snubbed by Oscars

jessica-chastain-zero.jpg Lincoln" received the most Oscar nominations this morning with 12, and "Beasts of the Southern Wild" did surprisingly well. Get full list inside.

Statewide mega-quake on the San Andreas now thought possible

san-andreas-carrizo-plain.jpg A new study offers evidence that the massive fault that defines the geography of California could snap along its entire length, unleashing a whomper of an earthquake that would hit north and south. Up to now, seismologists have assumed that a portion of the San Andreas in Central California where the Pacific and the North American plates creep past each other fairly smoothly would protect us.

Huell Howser memorial plans, and back home with Minnie Pearl

huell-minnie-pearl.jpg Councilman Tom LaBonge, a friend of the public TV icon Huell Howser, said today he will join friends and fans for a public memorial at sunset on Tuesday, Jan. 15 at Griffith Observatory. Also: video of Huell in Tennessee as you may never have seen him.

Bill Mouzis, KHJ Boss Radio director was 90

khj-logo.jpg Mouzis was the production director at formative LA radio station 93 KHJ and editor of the 48-hour "History of Rock and Roll" — the station's 1969 rockumentary.

Henry's Tacos may not close, owner says

Thumbnail image for henrys-tacos-line-gary.jpg The owner of Henry's Tacos said on Facebook tonight that the Studio City stand may not be closing entirely when its lease is finished. It might move, Janis Hood posted.

Beatles party in 1964: now more video *

beatles-color-beck-telegrap.jpg Raw news footage from 1964 shows the teenage frenzy and celebrity arrivals outside the private party held for the Beatles during their first trip to Los Angeles. Also: we have a new venue for the event.

Hilda Solis resigns as labor secretary, may run for Supes

The former congresswoman from the Eastside and San Gabriel Valley is expected by many to run for the Board of Supervisors when Gloria Molina is termed out in 2014.

SF Weekly sold to parent company of Bay Guardian

nude_beaches_banner.jpg Voice Media Group, parent of the LA Weekly, is giving up on San Francisco and has sold the SF Weekly to the company that publishes both the San Francisco Examiner and former arch-rival, the venerable Bay Guardian. A sale of the Seattle Weekly was also announced in the deal.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 1.9.12 *

city-hall-from-lat.jpg First look at Jerry Brown's budget, a new plan for Yosemite Valley, no Democratic endorsement in mayor's race, Greuel accused of misusing office, when the LA Times created Richard Nixon and the lore of El Clamor Publico and Rampart Records.

Dodgers list stadium fixes: wi-fi, sound, new boards and more

Dodger Stadium Improvements 2013.jpg A lot is being done before the season opens in April, the Dodgers said in detailing work that will relocate some seats, create new walking and viewing areas, modernize the bathrooms and finally give spectators reliable wi-fi and cellphone connections.

Charlie Sheen now sort-of apologizes for Villaraigosa remarks

Thumbnail image for sheen-mavillaraigosa.jpg Sheen didn't say whether his comments about Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa partying with him in Baja for two hours and being able to "drink with the best of 'em" were untrue — but late this afternoon Sheen did apologize "if any of my words have been misconstrued.”

Video: Mass dolphin run off Dana Point

It seems as if there's a video-worthy dolphin, whale or orca encounter off the Southern California every week or so now. This "stampede" by leaping dolphins is pretty impressive.

Reportero: Covering the drug cartels in Baja California

zeta-sergio-hara.jpg Reportero, which debuted Monday night on POV on PBS, follows a veteran reporter and his colleagues at Zeta, a Tijuana-based independent newsweekly, "as they stubbornly ply their trade in one of the deadliest places in the world for members of the media." Watch the trailer inside or stream the entire film.

Sheen alleges Villaraigosa lied about their time in Baja

Thumbnail image for sheen-mavillaraigosa.jpg Actor Charlie Sheen tells TMZ that his photograph with an arm around Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was taken in Sheen's suite at the new Hotel El Ganzo near Cabo San Lucas. He also says that this was not just a brief photo encounter as Villaraigosa suggested under questioning Sunday by NBC 4's Conan Nolan on "News Conference."

Morning Buzz: Tuesday 1.8.13

lapd-car.jpg Supreme Court rules against enviros on stormwater runoff, Daily News chides the mayor, bill to stop fines at broken parking meters, county Democrats endorse tonight, LAPD passes 10,000, and more inside.

Producer Phil Noyes and photog Luis Fuerte talk about Huell

luis-fuerte-grab-kcet.jpg KCET has posted some great tributes to Huell Howser, including video of the longtime production team and the station's three-minute obituary from Monday night's "SoCal Connected." Also: Kevin Roderick and John Rabe with Jacob Soboroff on HuffPost Live.

Video: Exhibit of items newly found in Frida Kahlo's closet

In this Univision video in English, the curator of a new show at the Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City explains the colorful dresses, other clothing and body harnesses found 58 years after the artist's death.

LAT says Greuel 'walks tightrope' in mayoral race

greuel-426.jpg Controller Wendy Greuel's prospects of being elected mayor "depend largely on how effectively she can repel" criticism that her publicized audits are for show and that her record, including a vote for the big 2007 raise for city employees, mark her as a City Hall insider, LA Times political writer Michael Finnegan says.

Three '80s murders charged to suspected 'serial killer'

The LAPD says that Samuel Little, 72, has been extradited to California from Kentucky and charged in the murders of three South Los Angeles women. DNA evidence links Little to the crimes, investigators say.

Judge orders archdiocese to keep names in huge records dump

cathedral-lady-of-angels-flickr.jpg Superior Court Judge Emilie H. Elias reversed a private mediator and ordered the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles to release 30,000 pages of internal files without blanking out the names of church officials and priests who were involved in the church's handling of sex abuse allegations or who were accused themselves. The judge acted on a request by the Los Angeles Times and Associated Press to include names when the files are released under a 2007 settlement with more than 500 victims.

Hertzberg endorses Feuer, leaving Trutanich

Four years ago, former Assembly Speaker and mayoral candidate Robert Hertzberg co-led the transition team for newly elected city attorney Carmen Trutanich.

Huell Howser, California TV icon was 67 *

huell-lamag.jpg Gustavo Arellano at the OC Weekly reported late this morning that California television icon Huell Howser has died. Arellano based his story on sources who spoke on condition of anonymity. A few minutes later, KPCC "Off-Ramp" host John Rabe tweeted that Howser's assistant confirmed that he died last night at home.

Confirmed: '64 Beatles photo is from LA

Thumbnail image for beatles-color-beck-telegrap.jpg Last night I asked if a color candid photograph of the Beatles chatting with fans outdoors could have been from the private party held in August 1964 in the Beverly Hills backyard of Alan Livingston, then the president of Capitol Records. By this morning, LA Observed readers had provided the answer.

BuzzFeed goes vertical in Hollywood

The fast-growing social web site BuzzFeed today launched an entertainment section. "Most exciting announcement of my career," LA bureau chief Richard Rushfield says on Facebook.

Morning Buzz: Monday 1.7.13

gas-emission-breeze.jpg LAUSD students return, Jan Perry says she's no underdog, Villaraigosa on learning to drive again, misunderstanding LA demographics, Steve Lopez heads under the knife again and that big flame over Playa del Rey on Sunday. Plus more.

'Gangster Squad' gets the LAT wrapper treatment - with a twist

gangster-squad-grab.jpg The fake stories and byline on the latest front page wrap around the Sunday LA Times are actually real, just old. 'Gangster Squad' grew out of a Times series, and the screenwriter is a former LAPD homicide detective.

Rare color photos of Beatles in LA to hit auction *

beatles-color-beck-telegrap.jpg From the Beatles first tour of the United States in 1964, most of the published photographs have been in black and white. Now color slides found in the collection of a late inventor include shots from a private party the Beatles attended here in 1964.

Jamie Kennedy sorta explains the worst New Year's Eve show

The New Year's Eve live show from Hollywood Boulevard watched by almost nobody on KDOC, but which then went viral on the Internet, kinda sorta went according to plan, says the host. Except for the unbleeped f-bombs, technical glitches and unplanned brawl.

USC adds security gates, ID checks to enter at night

usc-sign-600.jpg The fallout continues from the Halloween night shooting of four visitors at a party on the South LA campus of the University of Southern California. New rules take effect Jan. 14.

Mayor explains Sheen photo in Mexico, zings the media

sheen-mavillaraigosa.jpg Villaraigosa tells Conan Nolan on NBC 4's "News Conference" that he was in Cabo San Lucas on vacation, bumped into Charlie Sheen in the hotel, and that Sheen asked to take a photo. "I'm in the picture taking business. I've never said no to anyone that wants to take a picture."

Kings could finally hang Stanley Cup banner this month

dustin-brown-family-cup.jpg The National Hockey League and players announced a tentative deal this morning that could end their sport's shutdown after more than three months. Training camps could open this week, and a shortened season could start as soon as Jan. 15.

Lance Armstrong reportedly may do the mea culpa

Thumbnail image for lance-armstrong.jpg The New York Times is reporting that Lance Armstrong "has told associates and antidoping officials that he is considering publicly admitting that he used banned performance-enhancing drugs and blood transfusions during his cycling career."

Mayor's race Friday

city-hall-from-lat.jpg The first of our regular updates looks at the Temple Beth Jacob debate, a Friday zing war between Garcetti and Greuel, who's covering the campaign for the LA Times and more.
helen-hunt-sessions.jpg Times columnist Bill Plaschke made a guest appearance yesterday on "Petros and Money," the talk show on Fox Sports Radio. His opening four-minute admiration of naked actresses, hotel room porn and especially the nudity of Helen Hunt in "The Sessions" has got the sports media chattering. Deadspin files the story under its "Gross" category and includes the audio.

LA rape conviction thrown out on obscure technicality

Julio Morales cannot be convicted of raping a sleeping woman unless she is married, due to California state law, or unless it's proved that Morales knew she was asleep when he forced himself on her.

Morning Buzz: Friday 1.4.13

Female half of suspected child porn couple arrested, LAT says the answer to aggressive paparazzi is just to enforce the laws against jaywalking and reckless driving, Big Thunder to close for renovations at Disneyland and more.

Where all the Christmas trees go to die

christmastree550.jpg The recycling of Christmas trees in Los Angeles County is actually kind of complicated. Some will be buried in landfills, but still be considered recycled. And it makes sense.

Evett's Model Shop to mark 65 years on Saturday

Evetts-model-shop-ad.jpg On a trendifying block of Ocean Park Boulevard in Santa Monica, between Bob's Market and Thyme Cafe, is a relic of another time. Owner Colby Evett, 93, goes to work every day, and is kind of famous in the world of models and radio-controlled airplanes.

You can run a half-marathon downtown on Saturday night

new-years-race-map-13.jpg A race in the streets, downtown, at night, in the middle of winter. It's a concept.

A poem for Cliff's Books: young woman, older man

cliffs-books.jpg Tony Peyser saw our item this week on the potential closing of Cliff's Books in Pasadena and remembered a poem he wrote after visiting the store a few years ago.

Veteran LAPD cops accused of forcing women into sex

Thumbnail image for lapd-car-protect-serve.jpg Two Hollywood area narcotics officers have reportedly been implicated by four women. The accusations go back several years. The LAPD moved against the two officers on Thursday after one of the women filed a lawsuit.

On a scale of 1-10, serial car burglar is a 10

Police in the Rampart division laid out for the media today all the stolen loot they say was retrieved from the car of Frank Chibbaro, a 38-year-old ex-con arrested hiding in a downtown garage on New Year's Day. It's a lot of stuff. Video inside.

'Tis the season for live streaming of mayoral debates

Tonight's mayoral candidate forum from Beth Jacob synagogue will be live streamed on the website of the Jewish Journal. Good choice, since the forum moderator is Jewish Journal president David Suissa.

Morning Buzz: Thursday 1.3.13

city-hall-flags.jpg Child porn couple sought, Macy's to close in Pasadena, LA pot initiatives have the signatures, updates on the mayoral race, Greuel on guns, personnel moves at NPR and much more.

Documenting where in LA the Three Stooges filmed

la-brea-stooges.jpg What is it about non-Angelenos becoming so obsessed with old filming locations that they spend years tracking down obscure shots and facts — then write books about their discoveries that become chronicles of LA history? When you grow up in Los Angeles, you get used to seeing familiar sights in the background of movies and TV shows. You just stop thinking about it.

Al Jazeera acquires Current TV, will rebrand channel

al-jazeera-logo.jpg Al Jazeera on Wednesday completed a deal to take over Al Gore's seven-year-old Current TV, which is based in San Francisco. A new channel, Al Jazeera America, will be based in New York, the NYT says. "Current will provide the pan-Arab news giant with something it has sought for years: a pathway into American living rooms."

Orca family visits off Palos Verdes

orcas-new-years-thomas.jpg On Tuesday afternoon, volunteers at the ACS/LA Gray Whale Census and Behavior Project at the Point Vicente Interpretive Center spotted a mother and three orca calves patrolling off the PV peninsula. Nice underwater video.

Patti Page, one of top selling singers ever was 85

patti-page-baby.jpg Page was to receive a lifetime achievement Grammy Award next month. The top selling female recording artist of the 1950s died in a nursing home in Encinitas.

Bookstore on the edge: Cliff's in Pasadena *

cliffs-books.jpg For 25 years, Cliff's Books has survived just a half-block from Vroman's on Colorado Boulevard. Now everything in Cliff's large inventory is on sale for 50% off and they are hoping for a buyer to show up — and soon.

Morning Buzz: Wednesday 1.2.13

herex-bldg-wide-lao.jpg First morning roundup of the new year, after a bit of a break: politics, media, top filming locations of 2012 and the name of the paparazzo who died while shooting Justin Bieber's car in Sepulveda Pass.

Photog hit by car, killed after snapping Bieber's Ferrari *

lapd-car-paparazzo.jpg A celebrity photographer said to be working "exclusively on Justin Bieber" had finished taking pictures of a CHP stop involving Bieber's car when he was struck Tuesday evening while crossing Sepulveda Boulevard near Getty Center Drive. The driver stopped to help and no arrest is foreseen. More inside.

Ten stories I missed during the holiday avoidance

laura-galloway-cnn.jpg These are stories, news or other items that I mentally noted and should have posted about during the last two weeks. Or I overlooked them completely until now. I was trying to spend a little less time tapping on keys.

Half of 10 most popular Instagram locales are here

santa-monica-blvd-sign-lao.jpg Which all proves that popularity on Instagram does not reflect the actual world, or Internet culture. And that San Francisco baseball fans post more than Los Angeles baseball fans — and more than all the football and soccer fans in the world.
Clinton fundraises in LA
kermit-la-brea-closer.jpg Jim Henson Studios on La Brea became a presidential campaign stop on Thursday.
Brown declares disaster area
porter-ranch-sign.jpgThe natural gas leak above Porter Ranch now qualifies for various government actions. Story
Wet coyote
wet-coyote-vdt.jpgSpotted between the storms at Here in Malibu.
Performing arts with cheer
guys-dolls-kevin-parry.jpgDonna Perlmutter closes out 2015 with productions downtown and on the Westside.
Junkyard down
upick-firetruck-560.jpgAfter 53 years, Sun Valley's Aadlen Brothers and U-Pick Parts cleans out. Photos