Talking Points

Exits from the Daily News and LAT, mom dress code for Hollywood, more notes

A semi-regular bite at the day's news and observations. Previous Bullet Points. All of our media posts in one place.

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1. Media notes
If you haven't seen these tips, there is some major wisdom in Miami Herald rewrite man Martin Merzer's guide for reporters on how to cover a hurricane and file their notes... Ken Doctor on Tronc's latest moves: "Investors liked the Daily News buy, as well as the firings of four top L.A. Times editors and three corporate executives, two weeks ago. TRNC’s share price is up about 16 percent in the last month. How meaningful is that?"... Behind Politico's "return to covering the press through a political lens, rather than as a discrete industry," from CJR... Dana Bartholomew posts on Twitter that he has been hired by the Los Angeles Business Journal to cover medicine. He has spent 17 years as a reporter for the Los Angeles Daily News... Page designer Gerard Babb is leaving the LA Times to become Director of Media Relations and Communications Management at Claremont Graduate University. Not to be confused with Peter Hong's earlier move to Claremont McKenna... There is an opening for a journalism professor at Azusa Pacific University, but Facebook commenters point out the Christian school has a statement on sexuality that says "We hold that the full behavioral expression of sexuality is to take place within the context of a marriage covenant between a man and a woman and that individuals remain celibate outside of the bond of marriage."

KTLA says it raised more than a million dollars for Hurricane Harvey relief last week... NBC has given a script commitment to a new political drama, "Accidental Candidate," on which former Rep. Loretta Sanchez is an executive producer... Columnist in the burbs David Allen comes into LA to take a ride on Angels Flight... LA Times reporter Ruben Vives and LA cartoonist Lalo Alcaraz are profiled by students at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists annual convention. At that convention in Anaheim, NAHJ and the California Chicano News Media Association apparently failed to close a merger they have been talking about... IndieWire claims that August was a record-setting month for its web traffic... After 18 years, Nylon is saying goodbye to print. Exclusively digital now... Staffers who worked at the Las Vegas Sun when Rob Curley was editor like to make sure that he takes no credit for the paper's 2009 Pulitzer Prize for investigating the high death rate of construction workers along the Strip. Curley, the former OC Register editor, is now editor of the Spokesman-Review in Spokane... The LA Times ran its obit on filmmaker Jeffrey Tuchman.

2. The 'unspoken dress code' for private school moms in LA
moms-thr-amanda-lanzone.jpg"Overall," the Hollywood Reporter proclaims, "the L.A. aesthetic for women (non-moms included) is an effortless, tousled look — kind of like you got dressed and did your hair in the passenger seat of a convertible."

Fall is nearly here, and school is in full swing. For new enrollees at L.A. private schools, that means anxious weeks of sussing out the scene and angling to fit in — not just for students but moms, too. As with any tribe, the mom crew at an L.A. private school has its own set of unspoken signposts, especially dress. Call it the "mom-iform" — an unofficial dress code that can tell you as much about a school's real ethos as any official mission statement or tour...

Each campus has its own "look." More conservative schools like Harvard-Westlake, Marlborough, John Thomas Dye and Buckley attract buttoned-up moms toting $2,500 Chanel bags and wearing $750 Hermes "H" belts with Gucci Princetown slides that start at $650. At the progressive outposts like Crossroads and The Willows, the fashion is decidedly less logo-centric. Think of drop-off as an Isabel Marant runway show. One wild card? Mirman School for Highly Gifted Children in Bel Air, where the power-mom look is work-issued wear: "They're all doctors and come to school in scrubs," says one Mirman parent.

At The Oaks, a liberal school in Hollywood, cool moms opt for deconstructed "architectural but still shapeless" labels like COS, Black Crane and Rachel Comey, with Repetto shoes and bags by A.P.C. ($450) and Chloe (starting at $1,650). Downplaying wealth is key. "Everything is a high price point with low style and no logos. What you're wearing could be Gap, but it's probably Isabel Marant," says costume designer Julia Caston (Bad Moms). At North Hollywood's Oakwood, the look is similarly understated, with moms showing up in Ulla Johnson drawstring pants with casually structural Nili Lotan tops ($295). "No one is going for gold here," says Naomi Scott, a producer of Fun Mom Dinner. "Women are almost apologetic when they're dressed up, and say 'I have a meeting' because they want to qualify it."

The THR illustration of moms is by Amanda Lanzone.

3. Heal the Bay warns of very high bacteria levels in the LA River
la-river-from-fletcher.jpgLate on Friday the environmental group issued an "urgent advisory" alerting people to avoid the water in the Los Angeles River over the weekend. On Sunday they extended the warning. The reason: the highest counts of E. Coli and Enterococcus bacteria that Heal the Bay has seen since 2015, when the group began monitoring river water quality in the Sepulveda Basin and in Elysian Valley, two of the popular recreation zones.

"Heal the Bay urges people to stay out of the water and to delay any planned kayaking trips until water quality results show marked improvement."

4. What do I think of the Dodgers' performance?
The Dodgers lost on Sunday for the tenth game in a row — that equals their longest losing streak since coming to Los Angeles in 1958. It's also the longest losing streak in the majors this season — and they actually have lost 15 of their last 16 games. The Dodgers still have the best record in baseball, but that won't last much longer at this pace. The idea that the 2017 Dodgers are some kind of all-time great team destined for the World Series is not seriously mentioned much anymore. They aren't losing close. They are losing badly. "A pitiful end to a pitiable homestand," the LAT's beat writer, Andy McCullough, said in Sunday night's wrap-up. No team has lost 10 straight games and gone on to win a World Series, ESPN's David Schoenfield notes. "They've spent two-plus weeks as the worst team in baseball."

And as former Dodgers broadcaster Ross Porter points out, the team's next ten games are on the road.

Kudos to Times baseball columnist Bill Shaikin for working in a reference to Tommy Lasorda's celebrated 1978 rant about a slugger named David Kingman hitting three homers against the Dodgers. The occasion was the Sept. 4 game in which Arizona's JD Martinez clubbed four home runs to trounce the Dodgers. Shaikin served up a straight line to manager Dave Roberts and asked, delicately I suspect, what was his opinion of Martinez's performance? Roberts didn't get the historical Dodger reference until Shaikin played it for him the next day.

Lasorda's vulgarity-filled response to a question from KLAC radio reporter Paul Olden — "what's your opinion of Kingman's performance?" — has become a part of baseball lore. "I jokingly say that in my obituary in Southern California, that will be in the first paragraph," Olden said in a 2015 interview. He's now the announcer at Yankee Stadium.

5. Historical note on Dodger Stadium's one night of boxing

Ultiminio Ramos, a Cuban boxer who died last week at age 75, "was best known for his 1963 fight at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles with Davey Moore in which he won the featherweight title for the first time," the LA Times obituary says. He was Sugar Ramos in the ring, and he stood just 5-foot-4. That fight at Dodger Stadium was the only boxing card they ever held at the stadium, and it was notable mainly because Moore, a U.S. Olympian and the reigning champion, suffered a head injury when he hit the ropes and died three days later.

On the 50th anniversary of the nationally televised fight, David Davis wrote for the LA Review of Books that "It was an accident. It was a tragedy. It became a political issue."

Governor Edmund “Pat” Brown called for the abolition of boxing, as did Los Angeles Times columnist Jim Murray. A similar entreaty came from Pope John XXIII.

Bob Dylan wrote a protest song that excoriated everyone in boxing — including the fans and the media — for Moore’s death.* At the song’s center is a wrenching, unanswerable question:

Who killed Davey Moore?
Why and what’s the reason for?

A year passed, then two. Those who had usurped the moment — the politicians and the pontiffs, the sportswriters and the songwriters — were consumed by other matters. The assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the March on Washington, Vietnam.

Two who did not just move on were Moore’s widow, Geraldine, who "took a job and raised five children as a single mom," and Sugar Ramos. Mrs. Moore and Ramos honored Davey Moore's memory in his hometown in 2013.

6. Lenny's Deli in Westwood
lennys-sign-change.jpgFour years after the venerable Westwood Boulevard deli Junior's became Lenny's and kept the same menu and most of the same staff, Lenny has sold. The alcoholic beverage license sign in the window is always the giveaway to an ownership change. A server tells me that Lenny has turned the place over to the group that runs one (or more?) of the Aroma Cafes you find around LA. No immediate changes in the works, this server says.

7. Couple of tweets from Hurricane Irma
This one you may have seen all over the news and social media. A driver spotted members of the Los Angeles Fire Department deployed in Florida as California Task Force 1.

And this from an upper floor at a Miami hotel.

Plus: LA Times photojournalists Carolyn Cole and Marcus Yam on the ground in Florida.

8. Press release of the day

Hi Kevin,

I'm writing because I was wondering if you'd be interested in speaking with Jenny Jaffe, the creator and star of the new IFC Comedy Crib series NEUROTICA.

'Neurotica' is an earnest slice of life with Jaffe depicting Ivy, a dominatrix with OCD, struggling to keep her business afloat as the new mega-dungeon threatens her livelihood. Also, she thinks mouths are icky.

I think you'd really enjoy it!

Talk soon,


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'In on merit' at USC
Read the memo: LA Times hires again
Read the memo: LA Times losing big on search traffic
Google taking over LA's deadest shopping mall
Gustavo Arellano, many others join LA Times staff
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Nate 'n Al's in play, sexual abuse of swimmers, cougar kills horse
Media notes: LA Weekly massacre, more bad men, LAT editor and Trump
Pacific News Service RIP. NY Times profiles a Nazi. Good reads.
Standing up to Harvey Weinstein
Exits from the Daily News and LAT, mom dress code for Hollywood, more notes
Biggest Los Angeles brush fire was actually in 1938. And more.
Helping in Houston, new lion cubs, Garcetti's back
Garcetti has weekend date in the Hamptons