LA Observed archive
for February 2015

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Leonard Nimoy dies at 83

leonard-nimoy-spock.jpg The actor known for playing Star Trek's Mr. Spock died of smoking at his home in Bel Air this morning.

Friday news and notes: 2.27.15

garcetti-hahns-meg.jpg Kamala Harris doesn't poll well. Dinging Garcetti. Countdown to Tuesday's elections. Media notes on Harvey Levin, Bill O'Reilly and more.

O California: A New Yorker poem

palms-cuyama.jpg Sarah Holland-Batt, an Australian poet, has a poem of California in this issue of the New Yorker.

Councilman Buscaino not running for Hahn seat in Congress

joe-buscaino-mug.jpg State Sen. Isadore Hall is already running, so Buscaino said today "my future is here in Los Angeles, not 3,000 miles away."

Gentrification map of Los Angeles since 2000

generification-map-la-governing.jpg Cities aren’t gentrifying by master plan, but because young people with money to spend want to live there.

LA Times taps NYT for new op-ed editor

JulietLapidos-nyt.jpg Juliet Lapidos is an opinion editor and writer for the New York Times and formerly edited or wrote for Slate, the Atlantic, the Awl and other outlets.

Wednesday news and notes: 2.25.15

winter-temps-calif-nws.jpg Inglewood OK's the NFL stadium. Taxpayers did pay for the Kevin DeLeon coronation. Kenneth Turan's favorite Oscar analysis. Drones over the Valley. Plus more politics and media and tweets of the day.

Michael Graham, 72, Daily News reporter turned screenwriter

michael-graham.jpg Graham reported the Billionaire Boys Club stories in the 1980s and wrote for "NYPD Blue" and other TV shows.

HistoricPlacesLA website is ready for you now

griffith-obs-hpla.jpg The site provides information on and mapping of hundreds of City Hall-designated historic-cultural monuments and other places that might be designated someday.

Nordstrom leaving Westside Pavilion for Century City

nordstrom-westside.jpg Just as the Expo Line will be arriving, Nordstrom will be relocating to a much bigger space a few miles east.
villaraigosa-with-teachers-fb.jpg Will the former mayor aim for governor in 2018 — or have we seen the last of Antonio Villaraigosa the candidate? Who will dare run against Kamala Harris?

Henry Waxman joins son's PR firm in Washington

henry-waxman-politico.jpg Overtures to big D.C. law firms did not find a comfortable fit for the Democrat who battled Big Tobacco and Big Pharma.

Tuesday news and notes: 2.24.15

metrolink-oxnard-crash-kabc.jpg Metrolink crash injures 28. Port logjam could take months. UCLA's superbug problem. Plus politics, media and place notes and a tweet of the day.

KTTV boss Kevin Hale to retire

fox-11-bundy.jpg Hale has been at Channel 11 since 2004 and with Fox TV Stations for 18 years. No replacement has yet been named.

Monday news and notes: 2.23.15

meghan-mccarty-elex-kpcc.jpg Politics, media, place and more. Photo: KPCC's Meghan McCarty looks for an Angeleno who cares about the city election.

Writing about cancer and dying: Laurie Becklund and Oliver Sacks

henry+laurie-iris.jpg Becklund's service on Sunday at Hollywood Forever included a recommendation — seconded here — to read her piece about dying on the LA Times op-ed page. Sacks' too, in the NYT.

Watching the Oscars offline: the best

mozza-oscar-statuette.jpg No Twitter, no Facebook, no live blogs or online snark. So liberating. Link to winners inside.

Renderings day: 6th Street Viaduct and NFL in Carson

6th-st-viaduct-render2.jpg Of the two big projects officially kicked off on Friday, the construction of a new bridge to carry 6th Street over the Los Angeles River and beyond is the more likely to happen.

Friday news and notes: 2.20.15

mad-men-1976-scene.jpg Politics notes: An endorsement in the 4th district. Media: Mad Men and Pulitzer prizes. Place: Green sea turtles. And more.

Ready for Hillary funder in #DTLA Friday night

ready-for-hillary-22015.jpg The PAC is holding a Latino-flavored fundraising reception at City Club on Flower Street.

J.J. Abrams getting into 8th district politics in LA

jj-abrams-thr-grab.jpg The Star Wars Episode VII director and his wife are hosting a Santa Monica fundraiser for Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who is a candidate for the open City Council seat in South LA.

Uh oh: Yosemite. 8,000 feet. February. No snow

yosemite-no-snow-nws.jpg Not only is there not much snowpack in the Sierra Nevada, we're setting winter records for warmth -- again -- and the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge has returned.

June Fairchild, 68, Gazzarri Dancer on TV and actress

june-fairchild-eddy-tk.jpg Fairchild's fans from 1960s TV, "Head" and "Up in Smoke" found her again dancing on YouTube. She recovered from a bout of homelessness on Skid Row.

LA Times spokeswoman leaving for 'new adventures'

latimes-sign-sideview.jpg Nancy Sullivan flacked for the Times during much of the Tribune years. Memos from her and Austin Beutner inside.

Residents of Torrance told to shelter in place after refinery blast

An explosion at the ExxonMobil refinery just before 10 a.m. rocked the north side of Torrance and nearby areas.

Kamala Harris isn't California voters' first choice for Senate

condoleeza-rice-face.jpg A new Field Poll finds that would be Republican Condoleeza Rice. Villaraigosa doesn't stand out.

Fred Prouser, 63, Reuters photojournalist in LA

fred-prouser-facebook.jpg Prouser started with Reuters here on the first day of the Rodney King riots and shot close to 3,000 Hollywood red carpets before he was done.

LA Times partners with Jose Antonio Vargas on new race section

jose-antonio-vargas-cnn.jpg Journalist who is famously undocumented will create a new section of the LAT website on race, immigration and multiculturalism.

SNL reunion: 'The Californians' and 'Weekend Update' (video)

tina-amy-jane-snl-update.jpg Pico, Fry's Burbank and Cedars-Sinai are among the LA locales name-checked on Sunday's reunion show. Plus: Jane Curtin on Update.

Buzzfeed News hires another local (and Latino) reporter

buzzfeed-la.jpg The latest SoCal reporter to join the Buzzfeed News team in Los Angeles is Salvador Hernández, formerly of the OC Register. He's not the only one leaving the Register.

Guardian hiring a Hollywood reporter

guardian-us-grab.jpg The Los Angeles-based entertainment reporter will "engage US readers by combining the Guardian's internationalist, online journalism with US voices and expertise."

Mariel Garza of Sacramento Bee joins LA Times editorial board

mariel-garza-bee.png She has been deputy editor in Sacramento. Here she will be an editorial writer. Read the memo here.

Monday news and notes: 2.16.15

cindy montanez-campaign.jpg Times endorses Cindy Montañez in the Valley. Why City Hall's special interests love shifting the election years. Garcetti on Snapchat. A final David Carr column. Kicking off Oscars week. Plus more.

Sunday was publisher day in the pages of the LA Times

beutner-illo-lat.jpg Current publisher Austin Beutner announced a new book club — his first selection is by one of his employees — and the previous publisher traveled to Antarctica with his sons for a blowout in the Travel section.

'The Swap' is a twisty, Hitchcockian tale of a vacation gone bad

TheSwapFrntCvr72dpi copy.jpg "The Swap: A Mystery," the first novel by our friend Nancy Boyarsky, has been voted as the top London mystery by the readers at Goodreads.

Mariel Garza on the Rick Orlov memorial

mariel-garza-bee.png "I don’t think the chamber had seen such a large crowd since the city considered banning lap dances." Heh.

Gary Owens, longtime LA voice and media figure, dies at 80

gary-owens-ear.jpg Best known for "Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In," Owens was an LA radio fixture first. "One of the most famous broadcasters in Los Angeles radio history," says LA Radio's Don Barrett.

Stan Chambers, the dean of LA television reporters, dies at 91

stan-chambers-young.jpg KTLA just announced that Stan Chambers died this morning at his home in Holmby Hills. He did 22,000 stories in 63 years at Channel 5. Obits and tributes inside.

Friday politics notes: Times endorses Molina

gloria-molina-students.jpg Plus: Molina and Huizar debate. California's aging voters. LA's non-voters. And more.

David Carr dies after collapsing in the New York Times newsroom *

david-carr-2008-nyt.jpg "He was the finest media reporter of his generation," executive editor Dean Baquet said in his email to the staff. Carr was 58.

Endorsement season: Times for Harris-Dawson, DN for Huizar

harris-dawson-headshot.jpg Sometimes the choices newspaper editorial boards make are not fully predictable. Here are the latest in a few races.

Media notes for Wednesday: CBS' Bob Simon killed

bob-simon-cbs.jpg New president for KABC-TV. Johnson Publications selling off photos. Los Angeles Magazine gets more vintage. Plus more.

Jeb Bush's LA tech guy resigns over smarmy digital past

ethan-czahor-twitter.jpg "While Ethan has apologized for regrettable and insensitive comments, they do not reflect the views of Governor Bush or his organization and it is appropriate for him to step aside."

Kamala Harris begins fundraising in Hollywood

Thumbnail image for kamala-harris-paul-chinn-sfc.jpg She has her first local campaign fundraiser for the Senate race tonight in Bel Air. Plus: Gavin Newsom forms 2018 committee.

Kyle Kraska, former CBS 2 sports anchor, shot in San Diego

kyle-kraska.jpg Kraska is now the sports director at CBS 8 in San Diego. He was wounded outside his home.

Russ Parsons moves from LAT food editor to columnist

russ-parsons-juggles.jpg Move has been in the works for awhile, he says. Amy Scattergood slides up to food editor.

Brian Williams suspended without pay for 6 months (memo)

brian-williams-recants.jpg "This was wrong and completely inappropriate for someone in Brian’s position,” the president of NBC News informs the staff.

Jon Stewart leaving 'The Daily Show'

JonStewart-cc.jpg "He is a comic genius, generous with his time and talent, and will always be a part of the Comedy Central family," says the channel's president.

News and notes: Tuesday 2.10.15

hollyhock-house-blouin.jpg LA's overpaid City Council. More suspicious DWP bills. Politics and media notes. Hollyhock House. and more.

Rick Orlov remembered at City Hall ceremony

orlov-rolodex.jpg The embodiment of a mensch, said Mayor Eric Garcetti. The Daily News photo gallery includes Orlov's longtime Rolodex.

Laurie Becklund, journalist, dies at 66

laurie-becklund-stanford.jpg The award-winning former staff writer at the Los Angeles Times died Sunday night at home in the Hollywood Hills. Her husband, UC Irvine law professor Henry Weinstein, says that services are pending.

BuzzFeed to interview President Obama on Tuesday

ben-smith-fb.jpg If you need another clear marker that BuzzFeed is a news operation with reach and not just a website with lists, this is a pretty good one.

KCRW wants your proposals for 'vulnerable populations' project

kcrw-logo-blue.jpg Journalist or team selected will spend a year reporting on LA's most vulnerable populations. Deadline to apply approaches. Radio experience not required.

Bruce Jenner rear-ends car on PCH, causes fatality

jenner-crash-tmz.jpg Initial tabloid reports are that Jenner is going to blame the crash on being chased by paparazzi. Weak excuse for such an old tabloid hand.

Brian Williams announces hiatus from NBC news show

brian-williams-recants.jpg Maureen Dowd writes that for NBC, Williams puffing up his exploits "was a bomb that had been ticking for a while."

Friday news and notes: 2.6.15

Labonge-garcetti-weekly.jpg Items on Antonio Villaraigosa and Kamala Harris, Eric Garcetti and Nury Martinez, Tom LaBonge, the trendy campaign tactic of this year and more.

Amy Pascal out as Sony Pictures co-chairman

amy-pascal.jpg We now know the answer to the question of whether Pascal would survive the revelations of her emails during the hacker attack on Sony Pictures.

Can Brian Williams survive his fake war story? Should he?

brian-williams-recants.jpg Turns out that the NBC Nightly News anchor has been using his bogus claim of being shot down in Iraq over the years.

Andrew Sullivan to shut down The Dish

sully-cartoon-in-dc.png The other shoe has dropped in political blogger Andrew Sullivan's recent decision to stop blogging.

Midweek news and notes: 2.4.15

girl-on-the-train-cover.jpg Memorial service for Rick Orlov set. Janice Hahn may run for Supes. Promotions at KCRW. More politics, media and books notes.

The story behind Hollywood's yellow location signs

crew-parking.jpg In the age of smartphones, GPS and Waze, the directional signs remain a staple of Hollywood shoots.

Hollywood Reporter wins Ellie for magazine excellence

thr-cover-chris-rock.jpg THR's National Magazine Award comes in the category of special interest. Pacific Standard and Amanda Hess also win.

Rick Orlov obits and a Gary Leonard photo

rick-orlov-gary.jpg Colleagues and friends react to the passing of the Daily News' longtime presence at City Hall.

Rick Orlov, dean of LA City Hall reporters, dies at 66

rick-orlov-dn-640.jpg The Daily News announced this afternoon that Orlov died of diabetes complications. Mayor Garcetti: "City Hall is in mourning."

Two sides of the gentrification conversation in LA

gentrification-law-ziegler.jpg The latest issue of LA Weekly takes an interesting approach to the hot topic.

Monday news and notes: 2.2.15

bloonberg-biz-grab.jpg A little politics, media moves and notes, and news of LA the place.

Journalism job opening: See the dentist first

palmer-station-grab.jpg An editor is needed for the online Antarctic Sun newspaper. Must have good teeth.

Visiting with Luis Rodriguez, poet laureate of Los Angeles

luis-rodriguez-kcet.jpg This week's "SoCal Connected" on KCET features the author and founder of Tia Chucha's Centro Cultural & Bookstore.

San Francisco got zero January rain, but here comes some water

driest-jan-norcal-nws.jpg A very wet "atmospheric river event" is pointed at Northern California with an estimated arrival of later this week. Hey, we'll take it.

NFL's top trash talker and his LA trash man (video)

kevin-sherman-nbc4-grab.jpg The Seahawks' Richard Sherman was raised by a veteran city of Los Angeles sanitation driver.

Village Books razed but not forgotten

Village-Books-Demolition-Jan-2015.jpg The block in Pacific Palisades is being torn down for Rick Caruso's newest shopping area. But Bob Vickrey remembers.

Broadway theaters and free museum day a hit

globe-marquee-lao.jpg Saturday was one of those pretty cool LA days. Museums were free and packed, and thousands cruised Broadway on foot.

Producer Megan Ellison, Annapurna Pictures step up to save Vidiots

vidiots-annapurna.jpg The producer of "Zero Dark Thirty" and "American Hustle" loves her video store, I guess.
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