Life, cultures, architecture, geography, neighborhoods, history, demographics, urbanism, nature, the environment. And anything else.

Columnist Sandy Banks is taking the LA Times buyout

Sandy-Banks-zocalo.jpg "It’s time for a new chapter," says the Times' longtime columnist and most prominent African American journalist. "I don’t know what lies ahead."

Monday news and notes

women-in-hollywood-nytm.jpg New manager for the Dodgers. Growth politics in LA. Women in Hollywood. Lots and lots of media notes. And more.

LA's year really has been warm

malibu-heat.jpg This weekend's unseasonably high temperatures cinched a new record for 2015, breaking a mark that had stood for awhile.

Mature postmodern metropolis seeks long-term relationship

Hopscotch300B.jpg Los Angeles is like an aging intellectual hipster whose love of the ineffable fragmentary nature of the decentered urban experience has gotten old.

Santa Monica PD sends 19 cops to an apartment burglary?

seabrooks-smpd.jpg Two black women -- an executive rousted at gunpoint and the chief of police -- have varied perspectives of the same incident.

Holiday week news and notes: catching up edition

liz-phair-guitar-pitchfork.jpg Another missile launch coming? That homeless state of emergency pledged in LA never happened. Plus more.

Home in the Valley, the podcast

orange-trees-csun.jpg In his terrific new podcast series, Santa Monica author Bill Barol seeks to explain what it meant to call the San Fernando Valley home.

Monday news and notes

barbara-osborn-fb.jpg A weather change. Tarantino plans to apologize. A new spokeswoman for Kuehl. More politics, media and place.

From "Smogtown" to a model for the world?

Peyri Herrera.jpg LA is seen worldwide as a winner in the fight against air pollution. But to really become a model, LA may need to relearn its own history

Thursday news and notes

los-fezil.jpg Water flows in the LA aqueduct again. Vin Scully repeats next year is his last season. Los Fezil. And more.

Valleywood's 26 acres of wrecked cars closing for good*

Googie-Arches.jpg AAdlen Brothers Auto Wrecking, an institution in Sun Valley for 53 years, has supplied or been in a lot of movies, TV episodes and music videos.

Santa Monica tsunami forecast: everything you should know

Case16Elev.jpg A scientist reads the latest NOAA report on future tsunamis so you don't have to — and points out the good stuff.

Tuesday news and notes

DC_EXPRESS-bacon.jpg A drone knocks out power. La Opinión endorses Kamala Harris. Media notes. And much more.

When LA's vineyards ruled California by abusing Native Americans

Brandy-distiller-used-by-Vignes.jpg Vignes Street, Bauchet and Wolfskill are all named for early Los Angeles winemakers. It's not a pretty story.

Monday news and notes

brie-larson-lat.jpg Catching up to news from politics, media and place. Plus more.

Hurricane Patricia approaches Mexico at 'incredible' strength

hurr-patricia-early.jpg Potentially catastrophic storm heading for Puerto Vallarta "now very close to the theoretical maximum strength for a tropical cyclone on planet Earth."

Coyote now being tracked along the LA River

coyote-146-nps.jpg C-146 stays close to the river in northeast LA, but the coyote recently tagged west of downtown has roamed as far as Hancock Park and back.

Examining Los Angeles from within is all the rage

foc-cocktails.jpg Future of Cities: Leading in LA held its first public event Monday night, while Zocalo Public Square has been going deep on its home city.

Monday news and notes

gjusta-sign.jpg Catching up on politics and media news, job moves and some notes on place. Including: Metro losing riders.

CicLAvia goes downtown Sunday for 5th anniversary

ciclavia-map-101815.jpg Fourteen events later, CicLAvia says it's the largest open streets event in North America.

Venomous sea snakes arrive with El Niño*

sea-snake-warning.jpg If you see a yellow-bellied sea snake, take pictures and report the sighting but do not handle this highly venomous creature. OK?

Native plant sale at the Theodore Payne Foundation

2384655407_09fde10548_z.jpg Stock up on drought-tolerant native plants at the Theodor Payne Foundation's fall plant sale on Friday and Saturday.

Ansel Adams' Manzanar photos are in town

ansel+manzanar+calisthenics.jpg An exhibit of World War II camp photos at the Skirball includes images by Dorothea Lange and Toyo Miyatake.

POTUS here but should be lightest Obamajam yet

la-traffic-file-art.jpg The Times won't tell you because, one, it doesn't know LA as well as it should and, two, it hypes to attract web eyeballs.

Three more Santa Monica Mountains pumas found dead

p-34-dead.jpg This is the flip side of the healthy local mountain lions in the San Gabriels I posted about earlier today.

Photos: Fresh lion kill in the San Gabriels

fresh-kill2-martinez.jpg Robert Martinez's cameras stationed in the mountains above Glendora captured two more feeding lions — in color this time.

Dorothea Lange photos of LA poverty in 1936

dorothea-lange-la-mexican-quarter.jpg A month before shooting her famous migrant mother, Lange documented the "Mexican quarter" before it was razed for downtown's Union Station.

Look who's hosting 'Trailblazing Women' on TCM

TBW_About_Collage1.jpg LA Observed contributor Cari Beauchamp brings her film historian chops to a month-long series highlighting female directors back to the industry's first years.

It's the Mojave, Jake

bent-palms-mojave.jpg Bad day yesterday for stereotypes about the Mojave Desert cities being a hotbed of unsavory news.

'Angeleno' new LA series coming from PBS SoCal

angeleno-phoenix-pbs.jpg Producer Peter Jones wants the show to feel inpired by Ralph Story and Huell Howser, "who taught me the best quality to have as a journalist: listening."

Dockweiler Beach closed by Hyperion sewage and debris

hyperion outfall_0.jpg Elevated bacteria counts plus the discovery of hypodermic needles and tampon applicators are tied to Hyperion's switch this week to a pipe dumping treated sewage just a mile offshore.

Journo tries to visit his mom at Clifton's soiree

welcome-to-cliftons.jpg The ashes of Ray Richmond's mom may have been upstairs in the VIP area. But the family felt her presence.

Union Rescue Mission CEO loses use of legs to infections

andy-bales-aron.jpg Andy Bales caught the trifecta of Skid Row infections — E. coli, strep and staph — and now uses a wheelchair. "Conditions on Skid Row are worse than they have ever been…"

From Ramona Gardens to Fenway Park

now-ramirez.jpg Noe Ramirez is the 18,548th player to appear in a major league baseball game, but he's almost certainly the first from the Ramona Gardens projects.

Clifton's was closed all weekend

cliftons-sign.jpg The new Clifton's opened last week but was unexpectedly closed all weekend "due to some unforeseen circumstances," a sign taped to the door said.

Why LA missed the new economy

storper.jpg The Rise and Fall of Urban Economies: Lessons from San Francisco and Los Angeles, should be required reading for people who consider themselves leaders in Los Angeles.

Lines of miscommunication
now:under:no.jpgOnly in LA: Steve Harvey's latest column.
mannequin-heads-jg.jpgLast chances on La Brea Avenue. Photo by Judy Graeme. See bigger
Future of Cities
foc-cocktails.jpgAbout 500 people turned out for new group's first LA leadership summit.
Dorothea Lange's LA photos
dorothea-lange-la-mexican-quarter.jpgDowntown's "Mexican quarter" in 1936. Images
Visiting mom at Clifton's
cliftons-workers-rr.jpg Visiting mom's ashes, that is.
Trains in Santa Monica
expoline-clear-train-sm.jpgTrains return to Santa Monica (for testing) after 60 years.
The edge
ocean-vdt.jpg The view at the edge of the continent. Veronique de Turenne
LA's newest mountain lions
p-43-kitten.jpgKittens P-43 and P-44 caught and tagged.
LA's lizard season
baby-lizard-nhmla.jpgBaby lizards are all around in August. Story
Studying LA coyotes
coyote-dtla-nps.jpgWhere two Central LA coyotes go. Map
Rare frogs surviving
red-legged-frog-nps.jpgCalifornia red-legged frogs are thriving in the Santa Monicas again.
Crossroads of the World plan
Crossroads-Curbed.jpgA big project hopes to encircle the Hollywood landmark.
Earthquake end times
san-andreas-film-grab.jpgSeismologist Lucy Jones endures 'San Andreas' so you won't have to. Her tweets
Old Cornell
old-place-cornell.jpgThe Old Place on Mulholland Highway. Photo: Judy Graeme.
Look up
lookup-6th+flower.jpgA corner of the downtown LA skyline from 6th and Flower streets.
The name fits in Sawtelle
sawtele-furaibo.jpgSawtelle Japantown is LA's newest blue-sign neighborhood. Kevin Roderick
Streetscape | Pico Boulevard
pico-bike-skeleton.jpgMan and his skeleton riding tandem in Santa Monica. Photo: Sean Roderick
Night on Broadway
los-angeles-theatre-iris.jpgMovie palaces were packed on open house night. Photos by Iris Schneider
The Warwick
the-warwick.jpgCirca 1928 residential building on North Sycamore Avenue.
Little Tokyo
1st-street-little-tokyo.jpgA weekend on 1st Street.
Ficus vs sidewalk
sidewalk-eaten-by-tree.jpgTree wins on Ben Lomond Place in Los Feliz.
La Placita
Front door of Nuestra Señora Reina de los Angeles on a Saturday morning. LA Observed.
alphacast-foundry-santa-fe-.jpgAlpha Cast Foundry casts molten metal about 200 feet from the DTLA hipsters at Stumptown Coffee on Santa Fe Avenue. LAO.
Streetscape: Stoner Avenue
Stoner Avenue in West Los Angeles.
Stained glass
stained-glass-eave.jpgWhen on Wilshire, remember to look up. At Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills. LA Observed photo.
Arts District color
color-jg-hewitt-street.jpgSpatters of color on the sidewalk outside the former Al's Bar on Hewitt Street. Judy Graeme/click the pic to enlarge.
Mission Road in Boyle Heights
Mission Road, Boyle Heights. See bigger.
La Brea Avenue
labrea-shop-dino.jpgDinosaur head next to the sidewalk in a shop on La Brea Avenue. See larger.
Exposition Park lawn
expo-park-friday-eve-lao.jpgNice light on a Friday evening in front of the Memorial Coliseum. LA Observed photo.
Sidewalk art
cat-san-vicente.jpgSan Vicente Boulevard, West Hollywood. LA Observed photo.
Streetscape: DTLA
streetscape-6thstreet.jpgEast 6th Street in downtown Los Angeles. LA Observed photo.