LA Observed archive
for June 2014

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Obama coming back in July to raise money

obama-student4_mid.jpg President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit the Los Angeles area again on July 23 to speak at a DNC fundraising dinner and reception.

Bobby Castillo, a Dodger from Lincoln High School was 59*

Bobby-Castillo-card.jpg Babo Castillo is credited with teaching Fernando Valenzeula the screwball. Castillo pitched for the Dodgers in the 1981 World Series.

Monday news and notes: 6.30.13

chilean-miners-saman.jpg Supreme Court rules on Hobby Lobby and union fees. Mayor Garcetti's first year. Judge may decide Clippers sale today. Plus much more.

Press Club awards honor Mark Lacter tonight

mark-lacter-600.jpg Journalists of the year are Gene Maddaus of the LA Weekly, Alfred Lee of the LA Business Journal, Rolando Nichols of MundoFox, Saul Gonzalez of KCRW, Celeste Fremon of Witness LA, Cynthia Littleton of Variety and Ringo H.W. Chiu of the LA Business Journal. More winners inside.

Desert ghost town where Hollywood got fake snow

midland-bldgblog.jpg Out near Blythe in the lower desert, the abandoned industrial settlement of Midland has been empty for nearly half a century.

LA's last Hamburger Hamlet may have closed

hh-sherman-oaks-mural-mark-london.jpg The Sherman Oaks location on Van Nuys Boulevard has gone dark. There's some talk of reopening under new ownership.

Gorky's sign still hangs over DTLA

gorkys-lamag.jpg The sign at 8th and San Julian should be in a museum, Ed Fuentes blogs. Gorky's Russian cafe was a big thing for downtown in its day.

World Cup halftime flush registers on LA city water meter

WorldCupFlush3-law.jpg So many fans went to the bathroom as play stopped between the U.S. and Germany that water use spiked. It then spiked again at the end of Thursday's match.

Friday news and notes: 6.27.14

LAXTrainStation.jpg County CEO to retire. Train link approved for LAX in 2022. Chefs can soon go barehanded again. Naming the Van Nuys post office for Marilyn Monroe. Insurance risk of Uber. Plus Evelyn Taft returns to CBS 2 and more from Twitter.

How Aaron Kushner didn't save the Register

oc-weekly-kushner-cover.jpg In a long piece in the OC Weekly, Register rival Gustavo Arellano details all that has gone wrong with Kushner's experiment. About 70 staffers have now left the newsroom on buyouts that came down this month.

Photo: U.S. vs. Germany at Hermosa Beach

soccer-crowds-hermosa-spillman.jpg Eric Spillman, the reporter for KTLA Channel 5, posted this photo to Twitter of World Cup fans watching in South Bay.

NPR and APM agree to share morning Marketplace*

ME_clock_2014_new.jpg Marketplace Morning Report will now be a formal part of "Morning Edition" on NPR stations. Plus: A new "clock" for the morning and "All Things Considered."

Mid-week news and notes: 6.25.14

zuade-iwmf.jpg Supreme Court says no to Aereo and to warrantless cellphone searches. Diane Sawyer to leave ABC News anchor chair, Stephanopoulos upped to chief anchor. Brown leads by 20 points. Garcetti at one year. Rattlesnakes, drought, James Flanigan, driving in the left lane and more.

Re-thought LACMA design would span Wilshire Boulevard

lacma-over-wilshire-zumthor.jpg Peter Zumthor's new design spares acreage around the La Brea Tar Pits and has the initial blessing of Mayor Eric Garcetti, LACMA director Michael Govan and Jane Pisano of the Natural History Museum.

George Lucas chooses Chicago for new museum

chi-george-lucas-museum-los-angeles-20140611-001.jpg In spite of Mayor Eric Garcetti's push behind a social media campaign for Los Angeles, the new George Lucas museum will be built in Chicago, the Chicago Tribune reports.

What's going on with Nikki Finke and Deadline

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for hollywood-sign-oh-vdt.jpg Anne Thompson helps give some perspective to the latest back and forth between the Hollywood blogger and her former colleagues.

Rebekah Brooks not guilty, Coulson convicted in U.K. hacking

coulson-brooks-guardian.jpg After the verdicts in the phone hacking trial of Rupert Murdoch's tabloid editors, Prime Minister David Cameron apologized to the cameras for employing Andy Coulson as his spokesman.

Monday news and notes: 6.23.14

cahsr-illo.jpg Egypt jails journalists. Immigration and Rep. Kevin McCarthy. Sen. Kevin de Leon wants changes to high-speed rail. Sheriff's race going to the runoff. Why Nikki Finke won't be welcome back at Deadline. Amy Alkon in the NYT. And more.

Route 66 exhibit at the Autry National Center

rte-66-Dixon.jpg The mother road that brought so many families to new lives in California -- and introduced so many young Americans to their country -- gets an entertaining treatment at the Autry. Treasures on display include Jack Kerouac's manuscript for "On the Road," an entire Corvette and the Getty's print of "Migrant mother" by Dorothea Lange.

Friday news and notes: 6.20.14

ucdavis_blackbird_Robert_Meese.jpg Kushner says it's a strategy not an experiment. Donald Sterling harangues his psychiatrists on tape. Garcetti appoints new arts czar. LA's law against sleeping in cars struck down. California blackbirds in sharp decline. The Shirelles on video plus more.

LA Times doubles down on Hot Property

hot-property-grab.jpg The Hot Property blog is back on the A-list at LA, with a new hire and a newsroom memo to explain it all.

Thursday news and notes: 6.19.14

si-la-kings-cover.jpg Clayton Kershaw no-hitter. Kings make the cover of SI. Alarcons trial begins today. Another opening coming in California Supreme Court. Dov Charney out at American Apparel. And more.
aaron-kushner-usc.jpg NYU academic Clay Shirky reduces the battle for journalism to a fight between realists and nostalgists. He ranted at Ken Doctor and Ryan Chittum for not calling B.S. on Aaron Kushner, and they respond.

Russ Stanton leaving as content head at KPCC (updated*)

melanie-sill-kpcc.jpg Melanie Sill ascends to vice president of content for Southern California Public Radio. Stanton says he's headed to the private sector.

Olivia Munn answers 73 questions for Vogue (video)

olivia-munn-vogue-grab.jpg The actress and former senior Asian correspondent for the "Daily Show" lets a Vogue question man into her LA home. He fires questions about Los Angeles and more. She speaks some Japanese. It works.

An oral history of the Valley's Palomino club

willie-nelson-palomino-lamag.jpg The club on north Lankershim was the premier West Coast venue for country music for a few decades. Los Angeles Magazine revisits the good old days.

Broad museum plants 100-year-old olive trees

bcam-olive-trees.jpg The fifteen Barouni olive trees were transported to LA on large trucks and transplanted into the plaza outside the museum.

Wednesday news and notes: 6.18.14

garcetti-staples-facebook.jpg Garcetti tells parents to lighten up. "Deliberate rebranding," says McIntyre. Deputy sheriffs endorse McDonnell. D'Arcy warns City Hall. Two transgender news copter pilots. San Marino mayor quits. Plus media moves and more.

Today will be the better Stanley Cup parade

cup-alec-martinez-dodgers.jpg The Kings will take the Cup home to the streets of the South Bay this afternoon. It was intense down there last time -- check out the pics. Plus: The Cup visited Vin Scully and the Dodgers on Tuesday night.

Reporters remember talking to O.J. back then

ojsimpson-bronco.jpg Linda Deutsch of AP was the reporter Simpson felt he could talk to and be treated fairly. Jim Newton of the LA Times thought he was going to get into a fistfight when he interviewed Simpson. Plus more.

And the Garcettis sell their Silver Lake house

garcetti-home-sl-sold.jpg The buyer is reportedly Anthony Gonzalez of the band M83. No sales price has been reported yet.

Garcetti f-bombs the news cycle away from the Kings (videos)

garcetti-staples-facebook.jpg Garcetti finds a way to join in the fun and get everybody talking about him. Just say fucking on live TV while holding a beer.

Tony Gwynn, baseball hall of famer was 54

gwynn-rip.jpg Gwynn, the most accomplished San Diego Padre ever, had cancer of the mouth he blamed on smokeless tobacco. He grew up in Long Beach and his son and brother both played for the Dodgers.

Google Street View, before and after

street-view-before.jpg In just seven years, some streets in downtown LA have changed quite a bit. Check it out.

Downtown streets closed for Kings' Stanley Cup parade

kings-parade-map.jpg Figueroa Street will be closed from 3rd Street down to Pico Boulevard from about 10 am to 1 pm, the city says. The parade starts at noon at 5th Street.

Baquet has malignant tumor removed from kidney

Thumbnail image for baquets-read-on-subway.jpg His email to the New York Times staff calls it "minimally invasive, completely successful doctors have given me an excellent prognosis.”

Casey Kasem, Top 40 legend was 82 (video)

casey-kasem-board.jpg Casey Kasem was one of the marquee names on KRLA when that mattered in Los Angeles, and after 1970 was America's Mr. Top 40. He died in Washington state surrounded by his children.

Kings shave, go to the beach

kings-cup-on-beach.jpg The keeper of the Stanley Cup, Philip Pritchard of the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, tweeted this photo of the Kings and their families on the beach Saturday.

Kings bring the Stanley Cup back to LA (videos)

kings-kiss-kopi-jw-brucebennett.jpg The Kings had to play 26 games -- and in ten periods of overtime -- to win the Stanley Cup this time. Last time was the lifting of a 45-year burden. This time seems somehow sweeter. The parade will be Monday.

Friday news and notes: 6.13.14

nikkibadge150.png Donald Sterling digs for anti-NBA dirt. Political consultant Michael Trujillo. Nikki Finke is back and explains why. Communication moves at LAUSD. The Valley establishment now wants rail. Plus: T.J. Simers devotes a Register column to his old editor at the Times. Much more.

KCRW breaks ground on new studio

KCRW-Rendering-Reception.jpg When occupied in 2016, the new media center will get KCRW out of the cramped college campus basement it has called home for decades.

Westwood Village newsstand to close

westwood-market.jpg Karl Johansson has run the Village Center Newsstand for 20 years, since shortly after he came over from Sweden. He's going to close down by the end of the month.

LA Press Club advisory board has chamber of commerce flavor

eli-broad-book-cover.jpg We're talking Eli Broad, Richard Riordan, Rick Caruso, Ramona Ripston and similar.

Wednesday news and notes: 6.11.14

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for prosser-sidewalk-jg.jpg County to pick a child protection czar. No sidewalk repair tax. No mandatory curfew at Bob Hope Airport. Why no one says Silicon Beach. Plus more.

Bob Welch, ex-Dodgers pitcher was 57

BobWelch_1981_TBB1_624_Black.jpg Welch struck out Reggie Jackson in the World Series at age 21 and looked set for a great career. He had a pretty good run, especially for a guy who wrote a memoir about his alcoholism before he was 30.

Judge strikes down California teacher tenure, seniority

Superior Court Judge Rolf M. Treu ruled Tuesday that the longstanding state laws which ensure job security for public school teachers are unconstitutional because of the harm done to students, especially low-income minority children, by incompetent classroom teachers.

Jim Hayes, journalism prof and writing coach was 88

jim-hayes-fb2.jpg Jim Hayes was a longtime reporter and editor who taught journalism at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and who served as a writing coach in several newsrooms, including at the Los Angeles Times.

Tuesday news and notes: 6.10.14

Thumbnail image for tail-o-pup-on-405-am.jpg Kushner speaks to the Register staff. LAFD pilot killed. Ed O'Bannon suit against the NCAA. Where Dunkin' Donuts will open. Tail o' the Pup's future. Plus tweets of the day.

Derek Fisher to coach Knicks for Phil Jackson

derek-fisher-on-lakers.jpg The official announcement is expected Tuesday in New York. Fisher has never coached in the NBA before.

Another Donald Sterling lawyer now says he's suing again

Thumbnail image for sterling-roggin.jpg I guess this is what they call negotiating through the press.

Kings and their mad genius coach shut out Rangers for #15

darryl-sutter-after-game3.jpg The total number of wins needed is 16, if you get my drift. The legend of Darryl Sutter grows. Plus: Yasiel Puig sends the Kings some love.

KCRW unveils website makeover, plans new studio

kcrw-webpage-grab.jpg Lot more pictures and accessibility, easier audio playing, 20 years of archives. The timing coincides with groundbreaking this week on a new studio in Santa Monica.

Monday news and notes 6.9.14

aaron-kushner-usc.jpg Register staff meeting at 4 p.m. How the Clippers bidding went down. Garcetti as governor material. Another bear in Monrovia on video. Plus more.

D-Day radio broadcasts from KFWB found and restored

kfwb-dday-grab.jpg A disc containing some of the news that went out over the air on KFWB on June 6, 1944 about the invasion of Nazi-held France have been found at USC — broken in half — and heard again.

T.J. Simers takes Register buyout, says he's retired

simers-register-pic.jpg Sports columnist T.J. Simers' rebirth with the Orange County Register lasted less than a year. Well under a year. He's joining this week's exodus from OC Register.
pharrell550-zevweb.jpg “It’s heartbreaking to have to turn away patrons who we know paid sometimes as much as four times face value for a fraudulent ticket," says the LA Phil operating officer.

Police chiefs bet a sandwich over the Stanley Cup

langers-sandwiches.jpg Bratton gets lunch at Langer's if the Rangers win. Beck gets Katz's when the Kings win. For the mayors, it's about singing for Jimmy Kimmel.

Griffith Park's mountain lion looks healthy again

p-22-screen-grab.jpg New trail camera video of P-22 shows the young male cougar is mostly over the mange that alarmed researchers earlier in the year.

Kushner spars with Larry Mantle: 'We are growing' *

kushner-spitz-kppc.jpg Even with his image as the guy who figured out how to make newspapers work wobbling, the Register's Aaron Kushner declined to make his case with numbers that could be checked.

Donald Sterling folds his cards, agrees to Clippers sale

sterling-roggin.jpg Sterling will also drop lawsuit against the NBA. "Everything is just the way it should be, really," he tells NBC4's Fred Roggin. "It may have worked out differently, but it's good. It's all good."

Don Zimmer, Boy of Summer was 83

zimmer-as-dodger.jpg Zimmer was the last of the Brooklyn Dodgers to have an on-field job in baseball. Vin Scully told Zim stories between pitches of the second inning of tonight's game at Dodger Stadium.

Kings take game 1, Dodger Stadium reacts (video)

kings-rangers-scf1-nbc4.jpg Justin Williams wins it in sudden overtime. The Rangers built a 2-0 lead to start the game, but the Kings scored the next three goals.

Mood music (videos)

cup-on-venice-beach.jpg Face off between the Rangers and Kings at Staples Center is sometime after 5 p.m. on NBC.
sheila-kuehl-twitpic.jpg The lineup didn't change overnight, but some of the November general election races came into sharper focus.

Moderate Reep Kashkari will face Jerry Brown in November

garctti-garcia-buscaino.jpg Sheila Kuehl leads the race for Zev Yaroslavsky's seat, Jim McDonnell comes close to an outright win for sheriff, and it looks like a Republican versus a Democrat in the final race to succeed Henry Waxman. Plus a lot more.

LA Times hires freelancer as new arts and culture blogger

carolina-a-miranda.jpg The number of Spanish speakers on staff goes up by one with the addition of Carolina Miranda, formerly of Time and KCRW, a Valley native who worked as an LAT desk assistant more than two decades ago.

Magic Mountain to close Colossus roller coaster August 16

colossus-mm.jpg The giant wooden roller coaster Colossus opened 36 years ago at what was then just Magic Mountain in Valencia. It was billed as the world's fastest and tallest wood coaster.
aaron-kushner-usc.jpg Two weeks off without pay within the next two months, and voluntary buyouts in the newsroom. The Long Beach Register will fold into the daily LA Register.

A Rangers fan's guide to Los Angeles

jerry-west-kings-jersey.jpg True fact: the entire city of Los Angeles is closed on Thursdays so everyone can catch up on "Game of Thrones."

Union Station plans would alter and preserve

union-sta-detail-1936-gri.jpg I moderated a planel last week at the Central Library that got a sneak peek at Monday's unveiling of plans for the next upgrade to Union Station.

Garcetti names his exactly 15 Great Streets

lankershim-to-north.jpg Nothing that you would probably call truly great is envisioned, but the idea is to freshen up the streetscape a bit — in one strip per City Council district.

Monday news and notes: 6.2.14

Campaign 2014 primary races saunter toward the end, SCOTUS won't hear James Risen case, Isla Vista fathers meet, what the Academy will pay LACMA for May Co., Long Beach Register may cut back, and much more.

Palm Springs declared hot in the hip sense (again)

palm-springs-design-district.jpg The New York Times' Fashion and Style section deems it an actual trend and pegs the coverage to Leo DiCaprio buying the old Dinah Shore estate.

When Sandy Koufax owned a West Hollywood motel

sandy-koufax-tropicana-mote.jpg Fun item from historian Michael Beschloss: In 1962, Dodgers pitcher Sandy Koufax invested in Sandy Koufax’s Tropicana Motel.

Sterling's latest move: go to church in South LA

sterling-at-black-church.jpg Embattled (and possibly former) Clippers owned Donald Sterling headed down into the 'hood on Sunday and attended a morning service at Praises of Zion Missionary Baptist Church on San Pedro Street.

Light quake under Sepulveda Pass area bumped up to 4.2

shake-map-6-1-2014.jpg An earthquake of the variety that seismologists classify as "light" rumbled under the basin at 7:36, prompting a routine cautionary response from the LAFD and the usual suspects in LA media to do their over-excited thing on Twitter.

Kings win another game 7, return to Stanley Cup final

kings-hawks-handshake.jpg The Kings-Blackhawks series left the sportswriters gasping and the NHL (and NBC) looking ahead to its first-ever final between Los Angeles and New York. The series starts Wednesday at Staples Center.
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