Native Intelligence

Observations on Los Angeles and beyond by LA Observed authors and occasional guests

Dodgers make brilliant trade; LA media complains

Despite a MLB-record payroll, a budding a farm system, and a trade that brought in five useful players, some in the media are still upset the Dodgers didn't acquire David Price or Cole Hamels.

Michelle Obama at Special Olympics

LAO_Michelle_Obama_SpecialOlympics copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard runs weekly on Thursdays at LA Observed.

Changes afoot here

jc-mg-200-names.jpg Changes afoot at UCLA mean changes here. Mark Gold is moving on at UCLA. Peter Kareiva joins UCLA's Institute of the Environment and Sustainability as new director. And this column reboots.

Only in LA: The real game of thrones

andy-gump-helmets-copy.jpg Welcome to our annual Salute to the Toilet, spotlighting the aesthetic side of that noble apparatus and recent technological breakthroughs.

Forest Lawn Memorial Park

LAO_ForestLawn_Deer.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears weekly at LA Observed.

'Endless Summer' poolside

endless-summer-roosevelt-iris.jpg The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel hosted an poolside screening of "Endless Summer" for the 50th anniversary of the surfing culture...

Goodbye to all this

Los Angeles is losing one of its fiercest critics and lovers just when we need her most. Emily Green is leaving LA after 17 years, a crucial, insightful voice on the essential subject of water.

Pete Rose and the best 20 minutes in baseball

pete-rose-asg.jpg Rose did his time and that should be enough, says the former baseball columnist.

Phil and Dave Alvin

LAO_AlvinBrothers_EdPearl copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears every Thursday at LA Observed.

Wine and jazz at Hollywood and Highland

jazz-dad-kid-iris.jpg Kamasi Washington and the West Coast Get Down performed at Hollywood and Highland's Wine and Jazz Summer Concerts series.

Author interview: Molly Knight on the Los Angeles Dodgers

EE0cdfoN.jpg Molly Knight didn't set out to write a behind-the-scenes book when she began covering the divorce proceedings between Frank and Jamie McCourt for ESPN. But the self-confessed Dodgers fan realized she had a story with more plot twists than a soap opera. Her summertime read goes down as easily as a sudsy beer in the bleachers.

Hanging out with Mya Taylor of 'Tangerine'

mya-taylor-donuttime-iris.jpg The buddy movie takes you on a wild ride along Santa Monica Boulevard one Christmas Eve -- a raucous adventure that keeps you laughing despite sordid car sex, cheating husbands, lots of drugs, angry johns, fits of rage and outright acts of cruelty.

Pacific Palisades parade

LAO_RichardBloom copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears every Thursday at LA Observed.

4th of July with Cinefamily and 'Jazz on a Summer's Day'

cinefamily-bbq3.jpg The event I attended perfectly represented the Cinefamily mission "to reinvigorate the movie-going experience by fostering a spirit of community and a sense of discovery."

Arbitrage in the Grass

Stanley L turf terminators 600.jpg Turf Terminators will buy your lawn for the low cost of destroying it and replacing it on the cheap, sell the missing lawn at a higher cost for a public subsidy, then pocket the difference. You don't have to pay a thing. But there's no free lunch. And no free lawn removal.

Lakers, Angels have analytics allergy

Both the Lakers and Angels seem to be operating without a clue. The Lakers can't convince any top free agent to come to LA, while the Angels just had GM Jerry DiPoto resign after a feud with Mike Scioscia.

Noah Purifoy and Larry Sultan at LACMA

larry-sultan-mother-lacma.jpg What is the role of the artist in an imperfect world? Noah Purifoy, the son of sharecroppers in the South, seemed to have it right.

The Mighty Echos

LAO_MightyEchos.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears weekly at LA Observed.

Eifman and the LA Ballet, plus LA Phil closes the Disney season

Gustavo-Dudamel-007.jpg Russian Boris Eifman brings story-book ballets that are not about fairytale creatures or kingdoms and their royalty, but about real people drowning in human tragedies.

We're loath to fly and it shows

almostontime.jpg It's traveling season and I'm reminded of the questions that plague me when I'm boarding a plane.

Rainbow over Mar Vista

rainbow-over-mar-vista-srr.jpg No rain in sight, but a big rainbow over Mar Vista just before sunset nonetheless.

The once and future centers of LA theater

bad-jews-lamont.jpg With the end of Actors' Equity's 99-Seat Theater Plan now scheduled for next June, some suggestions for the transition. Plus 'Bad Jews' and 'The Heir Apparent.'

LA Fight Club

LAO_FightClub.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard runs every Thursday at LA Observed.
New at LA Observed
DTLA in the rain
rain-6th-street.jpgWhen rain is this rare, we run photos.
LaBonge signs off
labonge-last-day.jpgTom LaBonge's final moments at the City Council horseshoe (with Gary Leonard in the background.) Photo: Branimir Kvartuc.
Rare frogs surviving
red-legged-frog-nps.jpgCalifornia red-legged frogs are thriving in the Santa Monicas again.
National and Sepulveda
newsstand-natl-sepul.jpgWestside newsstand keeps on selling magazines. In print.
Reverse spring
gray-over-bay-vdt.jpgMay was cooler than March in LA. Weather
Earthquake end times
san-andreas-film-grab.jpgSeismologist Lucy Jones endures 'San Andreas' so you won't have to. Her tweets
Hyperloop hoop
hyperloop-hoop.jpgHyperloop Technologies looks right at home in the Arts District. More and bigger
Grave number one
abner-prather-flags-obelisk.jpgAbner Prather was the first veteran buried at the Los Angeles National Cemetery. Backstory
Egg slutsters
egg-slutsters.jpgGrand Central Market's hottest counter. Bigger
Streetscape: Hollywood Hills
elvis-suits.jpgWe assume the Elvis suits are long gone.
'Mad Men' at the Ace
mad-men-ace-tight-iris.jpgMatthew Weiner and the cast screen the 'Mad Men' finale. Iris Schneider photos
Streetscape | Tujunga Avenue
tujunga-ave-caioti-theatre-.jpgTujunga Avenue in Studio City.
Chatsworth Lake Manor
checker-monroe-county-sheri.jpgOld Checker labeled "Sheriff Monroe County" at the northwest edge of the Valley.
Old Cornell
old-place-cornell.jpgThe Old Place on Mulholland Highway. Photo: Judy Graeme.
expo-line-overhead-cc.jpgExpo Line, Culver City.
unstoppable-metro-local.jpgRiders may disagree. Metro bus on La Brea.
Spring has come
sycamores-vdt.jpgWildflowers and greenery in the Santa Monica Mountains. Here in Malibu
Breaking away
p-33-face-300.jpgP-33 escapes the Santa Monicas by crossing the 101. Story
Streetscape | Burbank
warner-bros-palms.jpgOlive Avenue side of Warner Bros.
Look up
lookup-6th+flower.jpgA corner of the downtown LA skyline from 6th and Flower streets.
Homeless camp on Pico
homeless-pico-closer.jpgSidewalk encampment on Pico Boulevard in West LA. Photos
Of tsunamis and earthquakes
namie-pile-sign.jpgIn one part of Japan, time has stood still since the 2011 tsunami. Story and video