LA Observed archive
for April 2015

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

LA firefighters help rescue boy alive from Nepal rubble

tf2-nepal-rescue.jpg The 15-year-old, found with rescue dogs, says there are others near him in the debris of a collapsed hotel where he worked.

NBC4 investigates food poisoning at LA restaurants

nb4-food-poisoning-map.jpg County health inspections are spotty even at restaurants with confirmed cases of poisoning, says report by Joel Grover.

Police commission OK's LAPD cameras, with a big but...

lapd-horses-dtla-bradbury.jpg The ACLU drops its support after the policy allows officers to view footage before writing reports. Chief Beck also says he won't release footage publicly.

23 years after LA riots, a project for Vermont and Manchester

vermontvillage.jpg Groundbreaking is set today for a $200 million retail and entertainment center to be built on the site of a swap meet burned down in the 1992 riots, which began on this date.

Jack Ely, 71, lead singer on 'Louie Louie' (video)

kingsmen-cover.jpg Ely co-founded the Portland garage band the Kingsmen and was the lead singer on their 1963 cover of "Louie Louie." Written by Angeleno Richard Berry, "LL" may be the most recorded rock song ever.

This book by ex-newspaper exec needed no ghost writer

handprint-heaphy.jpg Janis Heaphy Durham, a former VP of advertising at the LA Times, may have a bestseller with her book about paranormal events after the death of her husband.

Joni Mitchell's website refutes TMZ coma report

joni-mitchell-hat.jpg "Contrary to rumors circulating on the Internet today," the site says, "Joni...comprehends, she’s alert, and she has her full senses."

LA Times hires in China and on the West beat

latimes-sign-sideview.jpg William Yardley's hire to cover energy and environment issues in the West from Seattle is funded by the Society of Environmental Journalists’ Fund for Environmental Journalism.

Pulitzer winner Rob Kuznia explains his move to USC

breeze-winners.jpg "Print journalism, especially at the local level, is a scary place to be right now."

Cathleen Decker named California politics columnist for LA Times

cathy-decker-twitter.jpg Decker "will become our signature voice on California politics," says today's memo from the top editors.
bruce-jenner-diane-sawyer.jpg A morning roundup of politics, media and place plus some tweets of the day.

LA County's Task Force 2 deploys to Nepal quake zone

tf2-deploys-nepal.jpg The urban search and rescue team has previously gone to Haiti, Japan, New Zealand and the Hurricane Katrina destruction zone.

When Paul Olden asked Lasorda about Kingman's homers (audio)

paul-olden-vblue-nyt.jpg The iconic 1978 tape made by KLAC's reporter is revived in Sunday's New York Times. Olden is now the Yankee Stadium announcer.

The Angeleno who would be president of Armenia

armenian-march-for-justice-fb.jpg Raffi Hovannisian grew up in LA, a member of the Armenian diaspora in California. His son, the director of "2015," explains why Hovannisian went back to the homeland.

Aaron Paley to step down as head of CicLAvia

aaron-paley-bw.jpg The CicLAvia organization will conduct a national search for an executive director.

A second lion escapes the Santa Monica Mountains over 101

p-32-nps.jpg P-32 is the first male to successfully disperse from the mountains across the freeway. His sister did it a month earlier.

Hillary Clinton has three LA fundraisers booked on May 7

hillary-clinton-smile.jpg Hollywood checks are the main target, of course, with an evening reception hosted by Haim Saban and Casey Wasserman.

Richard Corliss, Time film critic, was 71

richard-corliss-time.jpg Corliss wrote about film for Time for 35 years, becoming "perhaps the magazine’s most quoted writer of all time."

The Huntington acquires major trove of Ansel Adams work

anselAdams-monolith-huntington.jpg The Huntington Library announced it has acquired a full set of Ansel Adams portfolios that the California photographer shot and printed himself between 1948 and 1976 and called "an excellent cross section of my work."

Thursday news and notes: Adam Gadahn and more

adamgadahn-file.gif Politics, media, place and a tweet of the day.

Vanity Fair's flow chart of California drought shaming

drought-shaming-vf.jpg First came the almond farmers, then the cantaloupes, then the golf courses — and so on.

Morning news and notes: Cardenas aide's subpoena and more

daily_breeze_a1-pulitzer.jpg Politics, media, place and some tweets of the day.

Los Angeles used to hunt mountain lions

california lion copy-thumb-600x408-91421.jpg Before wild animals had cute Twitter accounts, the sighting of a cougar in the hills of LA caused a much different response.

Mirthala Salinas leaves TV anchor seat for her family

mirthala-salinas-62-hz.jpg Salinas, the former Telemundo reporter who had an affair with then-mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, had been the local anchor on KRCA-62.

LA Times brings on new chief flack from Obama White House

johanna-maska-obama-wh.jpg Johanna Maska goes back to 2007 with Obama and has just stepped down as director of press advance. She's the LAT's new veep for marketing and communications.

Betty Willis, designer of iconic Las Vegas sign, was 91

LVSign_.jpg "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Nevada" says the sign placed on the road into Vegas from LA in 1959. "A luminous diamond stretched like Silly Putty, each letter of 'Welcome' encircled by silver dollars."

LA Times, Daily Breeze win Pulitzer Prizes*

breeze-winners.jpg Two Pulitzers for the Times -- for television criticism and drought writing -- and the first ever for the Daily Breeze and the Los Angeles News Group.

Monday news and notes: Politics, media, books and place

kitty-felde-headshot.jpg Plus a few tweets of the day for Monday morning.

Bass caught in MacArthur Park Lake

bass-macarthurpark-zocalo.jpg Steve Hymon photographs the colorful characters and scenes — and fauna — at the park that gave Westlake its name.

LA Observed at the Festival of Books this weekend

bill+boyarsky+latfob.jpg I'll be around schmoozing and signing on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Hope to meet some more of you. Plus Bill Boyarsky, Jon Christensen, Cari Beauchamp and more.
sabado-gigante4.jpg It's the longest-running show on Univision and possibly the longest-running variety show in television history.

Birds still not thriving in damaged Sepulveda Basin reserve

sepulveda-dam-tagging.jpg Greenery has returned, but few bird species are spotted in the reserve where the Army Corps abruptly tore out trees and habitat in 2012.

La Salsa Man in Malibu for lease

ls-salsa-man-malibu-4lease.jpg I don't know how long the La Salsa on Pacific Coast Highway has been closed. But the man looks lonely.

Michael Higby, LA blogger, was 50

The lead blogger for many years at Mayor Sam's Sister City died Wednesday after a visit to the dentist.

Media notes: Sylvia Lopez leaving KCAL, layoffs at THR, more

Sylvia-Lopez-kcbs.jpg Lopez says she is going to grad school fulltime. Alex Ben Block among those leaving the Hollywood Reporter, report says.

Cartoons win fresh panties and more for women in county jail

elana-pritchard-jail-hot.jpg Inmate Elana Pritchard's cartoons in LA Weekly of the indignities and shortages in LA County's women's jail led to changes.

Giannini Place next to transform on 7th Street

bank-of-italy-1923.jpg The former LA home of the Bank of Italy is on the way to becoming a hip hotel.
sotc-2015-grafic.jpg Garcetti has his night, but was anybody listening. Is Hollywood divided on Clinton or what? Politico to launch California Playbook.

KPFK dodges a bullet, stays on the air

kpfk-signage-ocw.jpg Last week's emergency fund drive was just what it sounds like — full survival mode, says an analysis in OC Weekly.

P-22 has moved on for now, wildlife officials confirm*

p-22-nbc-browning.jpg During the night he left the Los Feliz crawl space where he waited out the media scrum. The cougar has been tracked to a Griffith Park canyon where he is fine.

Percy Sledge, soul singer, was 73

percy-sledge-rrhof.jpg "When a Man Loves a Woman" "raised the bar for soul balladeering for all time," the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame wrote. Sledge died today in Baton Rouge.

P-22 is holed up under a house in Los Feliz (video)*

p-22-screen-grab.jpg As of Tuesday morning the cat may have moved on from Glendower Avenue.

Lalo Alcaraz on Walter Scott, a cop and a cellphone

walter-scott-cartoon-lalo-alcaraz.jpg The Los Angeles cartoonist posted his take on the killing in South Carolina of another unarmed black man and the unmasking of the police cover-up.

LA street corners: La Brea & Olympic

olympic-labrea.jpg Sunday afternoon in Mid-City. Photo: LA Observed...

KCRW names first Vulnerable Populations Project journalist

david-weinberg-kcrw.jpg It's David Weinberg, a reporter at "Marketplace" and creator of the Random Tape podcast.

Teardown: Daily News building in Woodland Hills

daily-news-tear-down-pool.jpg Bob Pool, the recently retired Los Angeles Times staff writer, posted a Twitter photo today of the former Daily News headquarters in Woodland Hills being razed.

Friday media news and notes

thr_dean_baquet-office.jpg Hillary Clinton woos reporters. Baquet, Baron and Beutner. KPCC hiring a political reporter. Daily News after Orlov. Plus more.

LAT: Scientologist-in-chief had his father followed and bugged

scientology-center.jpg Investigators hired by the church tracked the defector father of David Miscavige for 18 months, the story says. Miscavige denies it.

Adrian Gonzalez is off to a hot start for Dodgers

adrian-gonzalez-homers.jpg The Dodgers first baseman clubbed three home runs on Wednesday night and has five already this season.

David Laventhol, retired LA Times publisher, was 81

Laventhol created the Washington Post Style section and came to the Times through Newsday.
beyond-cover.jpg The video is not only safe for work, it's safe for children. "Can I get a little censorship outrage here?" the publisher of Pasadena's Prospect Park Books asks.
1969-Thunderbirds.jpg If you remember the names Ralphie Valladares and Shirley Hardman, this post is for you. Whoa, Nellie!

Stan Freberg -- satirist, ad man and more -- dies at 88

Stan-Freberg-album.jpg Stan Freberg had one of those Los Angeles careers. "The first great genius of American musical satire," says Harry Shearer.

Sam Rubin: Bruce Jenner does not deserve 2 hours on ABC (video)

jenner-grab.jpg Nothing he can say about gender issues would trump his participation in the "cultural crime" of Kardashian hype.

And a vote FOR the new parking signs...

parking-signs-npr-samsanders.jpg People on the street in DTLA aren't sold yet on the new parking signs, but a writer at CityLab loves them. Here's why.

New parking signs get mixed reviews

parking-signs-npr-samsanders.jpg The color-colded grids are supposed to be simpler and more logical. That doesn't mean that people like them.

A Dutch woman has been photographing Skid Row for 6 years

skid-row-vanhoek.jpg Désirée van Hoek says people ask why "a relatively wealthy, white girl from Amsterdam" spends her summers in LA taking photos of the poor and homeless.

In praise of the Thomas Guide

thomas-guide-2009.jpg Driving in LA is an art that requires intuition, patience and a sense of the topography, Meghan Daum writes.

Rain and snow coming this week

nws-rain-4-6-15.jpg Expect a day of rain on Tuesday with snow above 4,500 feet. NWS expects about up to an inch of rain.

Rolling Stone retracts rape story at University of Virginia

rolling-stone-report.jpg A report by the Columbia school of journalism says Rolling Stone's epic screw up "is a story of journalistic failure that was avoidable." Inside: writer Sabrina Erdely's statement.

Opening Day for the Dodgers: The Padres are coming

puig-espn.png The Padres make another big trade Sunday that has some picking San Diego to be better than the Dodgers, who start with the sport's biggest payroll. Plus: Ozzie Smith's backflip.

Billy DeLury, Dodgers link to Brooklyn, was 81

vin-and-billy-soohoo.jpg Vin Scully had to announce another death in his Dodger family on Sunday, the day before the season opens at Dodger Stadium.

Pico Union Project is more than a women's mosque

pico-union-project-jj.jpg LA's oldest Jewish synagogue building is now used for prayer by many kinds of congregations. That's not by accident.

Transformation of the Arts District

Arts-District-Map-kcrw.jpg KCRW's Lisa Napoli did a ride-along through the downtown Arts District recently with resident photographer Melissa Richardson Banks.

Larry Mantle and KPCC celebrate 30 years of 'Airtalk'

airtalk-team-kpcc.jpg Mantle marked the occasion with a live broadcast in front of an audience in KPCC's Crawford Family Forum
prosser-sidewalk-jg.jpg The City Council has paid dearly to get some of the pending liabilities off its docket. They might still try to make you pay for their sidewalk damage.

California snowpack hits 'terrifying new record low'

04-01-15-Snow_Survey_5.jpg Gov. Brown orders the state's first-ever 25% cut in water use as the winter ends with essentially no snowpack. "This is the new normal,” Brown says. “We will learn how to cope with this.”

Muslim female surfers and modesty on KCET*

Ep745_FemaleMuslimSurfers_03.18.15 copy.jpg Local surfers who are observant Muslims and female and the challenges they face, tonight on 'SoCal Connected.' Plus orcas, an urban farm and Hollyhock House.

LA votes to move Santa Monica 'closer'

not-santa-monica-law.jpg As April Fools Day stories go in alt weeklies, this one's pretty good.
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