February 28, 2007

Midnight Ruckus Described, But Not Explained

FROM THE SORELY MISSED Los Angeles Fire Department blog:
"On Wednesday, February 28, 2007 at 1:00 AM... 24 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Captain Greg Olsen responded to an auto fire with civilian fatality on the northbound Golden State (5) Freeway south of Fletcher Drive in the Atwater Village area of Los Angeles...

"Firefighters came to the immediate medical aid of a severely injured adult male burn victim found near the car, but despite their prompt efforts at extinguishing the flames, were unable to rescue an adult female from within the burning vehicle.

"There was no clear evidence or witnesses describing a collision."

When Did Google Sneak This One In

Google Adds Traffic Button
I JUST NOTICED TODAY that Google Maps has a new button: traffic. There, alongside the satellite and hybrid buttons. Whoa. How long has it been there?

[UPDATE: At least since 9:01 this morning.]

Where does Google's data come from? Is it up to the minute? Why are parts of some freeways - the 2, the 110 - gray? No data?

This screen capture comes from 6:45pm on Wednesday, February 28, 2007. Other traffic services seem to report nearly identical rush hour conditions: highways 110 and 101 flowing blood red.

February 27, 2007

Just in Case Someone Walks in LA

Walkable Neighborhoods
FROM THE BEST LIST of Los Angeles maps ever blogged comes this nugget about Atwater Village:
"Using a street file provided by ESRI, the Thomas Guide, and the map of barrier land uses... Several areas identified in the analysis coincide with neighborhoods considered walkable: Atwater Village, Boyle Heights, and West Hollywood."
Thanks to LA City Nerd (bookmarked!) for the tip to UCLA's Walkable Neighborhoods Map (PDF).

Arthur: On the Rocks

IF YOU HAVEN'T READ it by now, you've missed your chance. Arthur, the peace-and-love, music-and-drug five-year-old 'zine headquartered at an Atwater Village apartment, has gone cold turkey.
"As of Friday, Feb. 23rd, Arthur Magazine is on indefinite hiatus... Thank you to staff, contributors, distributors, readers and advertisers for all your dedication."
In the publishing industry quote of the year, editor Jay Babcock told the Village Voice, "The magazine can't be restarted. It's a done deal. It's dead. The situation can't be unfucked."

Atwatergate: 'Blunted by Infighting'

SPEAKING OF THINGS NEWSPAPERS might be sniffing for, our Atwater Village non elections could catch the eye of the LA Times reporter behind this piece about neighborhood councils being "blunted by infighting, poor community outreach and a lack of influence with key city departments."

Particularly newsworthy since the mayor appointed Carol Baker Tharp as LA's new Department of Neighborhood Empowerment general manager.

A hundred bucks says AVNC is already on her list.

February 26, 2007

Newspaper Surfer Sniffing Around

LA Times Puts Us in the Valley
SOMEONE AT THE LOS ANGELES TIMES is curious about Atwater Village. Today the Newbie blog saw two visitors from latimes.com. (Maybe one visitor twice?)

One hit came from a search for industrial lofts in Atwater Village. The other from Googling Jill's Paints Los Angeles.

They viewed a total 13 pages. Article research? Or personal relocation? Perhaps I can help: atwatervillagenewbie at gmail.

P.S. - I love Sitemeter.

Atwatergate: Tits for Tat

MORE FALLOUT FROM LAST WEEK's canceled election for Atwater Village Neighborhood Council.

The candidate accused of breaking election rules responds. The council co-chairs respond. See if you can follow the bouncing balls. My eyes are... beginning... to... glaze... over.
The usual suspects will suss it out March 8, 7:00pm, at New Hope Chapel, 2861 Los Feliz Blvd.

Do they ever say fourth time's a charm? If so, good luck pulling it off.

February 25, 2007

The Other Side of the River Story

DURING THE RECENT RAINS, a homeless lady on an island in the middle of a swollen Los Angeles River yelled, "Please don't call help. We're OK." But someone did call help. And photographed the rescue involving more than 100 Los Angeles and Glendale firefighters. Here is the story. With 20 great pictures.

An Inconvenient Award Show

WHILE YOU'RE BUSY DEFENDING your nonprofit status and your executive director's quarter million dollar salary, Santa Monica Oscars Independent Spirit Awards, here's how some of us on the other side of LA will be avoiding the real Academy Awards tonight:
"Sunday night at the Bigfoot Lodge on Los Feliz Boulevard [in Atwater Village] Spencer Lee, 'the Movie Guy,' breaks open his massive collection of 8- and 16-millimeter films and plays them all night, starting at 10.

"'He has everything from people's private porn movies - nothing too bad - to old Bill Cosby footage,' manager Mark DeSalvo says. 'It's also bingo night here... But this is almost a neighborhood bar on Sundays. That's as Oscar night as it's going to get.'"
Read more about Oscar avoidance in this article from yesterday's LA Times.

This is the same paper, of course, that fails to disclaim in its other article how it sponsors (and perhaps sees a tax benefit from?) the Los Angeles Film Festival, run by the same umbrella nonprofit as the Independent Spirit Awards.

I suppose if the LA Times donates ad space to LAFF, then Film Independent can well afford to drop $265,000 a year on a Harvard grad.

February 24, 2007

Sperm Might Fly Faster on Beverly Blvd.

Sperm Flies Faster on Beverly
BLATANTLY SUGGESTIVE HEADLINE replaces crudely clinical headline, "Oscars, traffic and a cup of sperm," in today's Los Angeles Times.

The story: a hapless fertility patient tries to get across LA with a warm specimen. From Atwater Village to Beverly Hills, she attempts Hollywood Blvd. during, of all times, Oscar week.
"You don't appreciate how easily sperm travels through a vagina until you try to drive it across Los Angeles during Oscar week."

7:54am - "I pull out of our driveway in Atwater Village... Half a mile of Hollywood Boulevard is blocked for the construction of a celebrity bridge..."

8:40am - "Landlocked in front of the Rock 'n' Roll Ralphs..."

8:52am - "I start to cry..."

9:01am - "Tear down a side street. Dead end..."
The rest of the story on latimes.com (subscription required, sometimes). Please note that the writer "teaches stand-up at UCLA." She does not teach geography.

February 23, 2007

Atwater Chatter - Non Non-Election Edition

SURELY THERE ARE HAPPENINGS in our little slice of northeast Los Angeles beyond grammar violations and canceled elections, yes? Yes:
Now a personal - and, at this point, garlicky - question. Tonight we hankered for Zankou Chicken, went to the Burbank superstore. I noticed something missing from the menu: the Hollywood location. Not on the paper menu, not on the web site. Isn't LA's original Zankou still open at Sunset and Normandie? Why would it be disowned?

Atwatergate: Quote of the Week

"They really did a good job getting the word out on the day. Sucks to see that someone didn't get it together to make sure it went through. I ALMOST participated this time. Now it seems like they lost my/our attention or will."

Atwatergate: A Few Logical Follow-Ups

WITH THE ATWATER VILLAGE Neighborhood Council election canceled for the third time in less than a year, one has to wonder:

1. Why cancel an entire election for alleged infractions of only two of the 14 candidates?

2. How can someone from Reseda cancel an AVNC election, issue a 660-word gossip column non election report, and then refer "all questions about the report and the canceled election to the current AVNC Board"?

3. Shouldn't the election be postponed instead of canceled?

4. Who gains from eliminating two of the three candidates for business representative?

5. Will Mrs. Newbie and I ever get to vote in a neighborhood election?

February 22, 2007

Atwatergate: 660 Words from the Election Administrator

THE INDEPENDENT ADMINISTRATOR assigned to the Atwater Village Neighborhood Council election - canceled for the third time in less than a year - reports this via Valleynews.com:
"After investigation I discovered that the candidate statements posted on the Atwater Village Neighborhood Council's website were altered from the original submitted version. The two altered candidates were Michel Khalil and Luis Lopez. The altered text corrected the grammatical errors on Luis Lopez's statement and suggested looking at a website. It also stated 'Vote for Luis and Mike on February 24th!'"
That's the gist of the 660-word "non election recap" from Reseda's Walt Sweeney. I can see disqualifying a couple of candidates, but canceling the entire election? Over grammar?

Sweeney said he doesn't want to "waste taxpayers money," but what about the reported $12,000 cost of this election, canceled just days in advance?

This statement is sure to be parsed further in days to come. Stay tuned.

'Please Don't Call Help, We're OK'

Issis, LA River Dweller
LOCAL TV WAS A NO-SHOW at the Los Angeles River rescue in Atwater Village two months ago, but made it to one on Monday. KCAL 9 gets an earful from "Issis," the rescued woman who lives on a strip of earth in the river:
"I've lived down there for like seven years. We watched the weather. We're river rats. We know. I mean, look at it. It's beautiful now. The water has gone down like five, six inches already.

"She screamed down, 'Don't try and cross the river.' And we tried to yell up, 'We're not trying to cross the river.' And she calls 911. We're like, please don't call help. We're OK. We're just trying to be nonchalant."
More than 100 LA and Glendale firefighters were involved in the midday rescue.
"They were real Christian about it. Just real kind. Made sure we were OK."

Cole Massie, Neighborhood Superkid

LET'S FOLLOW THE RAPID RISE of one Atwater Village youngster:
  • TLC series 'My Life as a Child' - "Monday's opening installment looks at ... Cole Massie, a 9-year-old Atwater Village boy with a delightfully sunny disposition despite the serious challenges cerebral palsy has thrown at him." [San Bernadino County Sun]
  • Boy with cerebral palsy learns karate - "The sensei announced that in 25 years as a teacher he never had one student score 100 percent on his yellow-belt test. Cole Massie was his first." [LA Daily News]
  • Kids liven up press tour - "Cole, who has cerebral palsy and was on stage with his service dog whom he called his brother: 'I'm in a wheelchair and all this stuff. I can do things your average person can, just in a different way.'" [LA Times]
  • Strides Rider in Rose Parade - "We were delighted on New Years Day to see our own rider, Cole... riding atop the Ronald McDonald House Charities float..." [Strides News]
  • Got Some Game - "The youngster battling cerebral palsy got a group of USC players to get him out of his wheelchair to play catch." [The Press-Enterprise]
Surely there's more to come. Cole's episode of "My Life As a Child" airs Monday Feb. 26 on TLC.

Photo from TLC

LA Mag Jumps on Canele Flanwagon

LA Mag on Canele Bandwagon
IT'S OFFICIALLY A MEDIA DARLING. Atwater Village bistro Canele (3219 Glendale Blvd.) has been positively inked by the leading daily, weekly and, now, monthly print publications in Los Angeles.

As follow-up to its restaurant award dessert blurb, Los Angeles Magazine gives Canele the full photo-and-caption treatment:
"Chef Corina Weibel, formerly of Lucques, is bringing aioli-intensive, Cal-Mediterranean cooking to Atwater Village. The walls are exposed brick, the kitchen is open, and the atmosphere is relentlessly festive. A pissal-adiere appetizer crowns a browned and blistered crust with tangy cooked-down onions. Herb-roasted leg of lamb with braised endive and grapefruit and Israeli couscous whips around several cultures before finding its own perfect place. The flan's an ideal dessert. Reservations not accepted."

Electile Dysfunction in Atwater Village

AFTER A BANNER YEAR for resignations (June, July, August, September) and three delays of the Atwater Village Neighborhood Council elections, I think the neighborhood deserves an explanation.

We could just roll our eyes and move on. But elections cost money. Banners, mailings, publicity and promotion take money and time.

Does anyone know why this election was canceled and what will happen next? Is this the end of the AVNC? Leave non-libelous comments below or email:
Besides, Mrs. Newbie and I were really looking forward to voting.

February 21, 2007

Breaking! Third Time is Not the Charm

Elections for Atwater Village Neighborhood Council
SO MUCH FOR THE NEXT Atwater Village Neighborhood Council election. It was supposed to be this Saturday, Feb. 24. But then this note appears atop atwatervillage.org:
"Due to election irregularities. There will be no candidate forum on Thursday, February 22 and there will be no election on Saturday, February 24. Further information will be available from the Atwater Village Board shortly."
The note is signed by Walt Sweeney, RNC Chairman. Is that RNC as in Republican National Commitee? Highly doubtful. Though there is a Walt Sweeney who chairs the Reseda Neighborhood Council. Is the Valley annexing Atwater Village once and for all?

A quick recap of our neighborhood's attempts at democracy:
Does anyone know what the hell is going on?

It's OK That LA Isn't All About Architecture

An Outlet for Commerce 4
LET PEOPLE SLOBBER OVER New York skyscrapers. So what if Los Angeles ranks no higher than 75 among AIA's top buildings.

As much as I personally dig architecture, I often see it as a 19th century pursuit. It's so industrial age - gathering stone and glass and metal to see who can make the biggest, sexiest pile.

LA strikes me as a 21st century pursuit. (No matter what the History Channel says.) We're flickering lights, not piling rocks. We're more about dreams, ideas and zeitgeist. Buildings, as is the Hollywood custom, are simply set pieces in a big picture show.

Or simply a tire factory converted to an outlet mall.

February 20, 2007

Atwater Chatter - Foodie Edition

Pigs in a New Car, originally uploaded by Atwater Village Newbie.

Taco stand on Fletcher 'off the hook' [Goodgoings]

Canele: 'My new favorite restaurant' [Daily Nosh]

Pirate Chai at Kaldi Coffee: 'Relish' it [Food and Music Club]

Tam O'Shanter fish and chips: $19 [LA Times]

Guac Bowl crushes hopes, dreams [Cooking Critic]

February 16, 2007

Countdown to Tragiversary IV

It's three weeks since the second anniversary of the worst Metrolink commuter railroad disaster. A new memorial stands near Seneca Avenue and Los Feliz Boulevard. But old feelings continue.

Patty Alcala writes intimately about becoming a widow on January 26, 2005. Read her blog here:

Fun with Thomas Guide

Fun with Thomas Guide
WHAT IS THE HIGHEST numbered street in the City of Los Angeles, I wondered. My car-ready Thomas Guide came to the rescue: 266th Street, in the Harbor City area of LA. This answer would be much harder to find online, even with the mighty Google Maps.

February 15, 2007

Mesoamerican Atwater Village

Mesoamerican Plaza 8
Mesoamerican Atwater 1
Does anyone know what these circular pictogram thingies are called? Within 24 hours I witnessed the one at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in the Hollywood Hills and the one at La Azteca restaurant in Atwater Village.

February 14, 2007

Ranking Candidates by Years in Neighborhood

Years in Atwater Village by Candidate
THIS IS NOT AN ENDORSEMENT. The Newbie doesn't do endorsements.

This chart ranks Atwater Village Neighborhood Council (AVNC) candidates based solely on reported length of time living and/or working in our northeast Los Angeles neighborhood.

Mary Lou Watkins, for example, "raised my family in Atwater Village, residing here since 1960." Karl F. Schmid, on the other end, moved here "early this year."

Neighborhood residents: clip this chart and bring it to the Feb. 24 AVNC election. Vote on your taste for new blood. Oldbies vs. newbies. Tradition vs. inspiration.

(Four candidate statements - from David Negrete, Luis Lopez, Tim Warner and Joshua Lewin - did not specify length of time in Atwater Village.)

LA's 'Neglected Majority'

FACING STIFF COMPETITION from all the other glossy lifestyle/city Los Angeles magazines and Web sites, Real Talk LA is due in May with this angle:
"...New glossy lifestyle/city magazine targeting Los Angeles' 'neglected' majority - the upscale apsirational Multiculturals; Latin, African-Americans, Asian, Middle Eastern, Indian, and European-Americans.

"This is a gutsy, smart, sophisticated, sharp mag. Our readers like Wired, Good, Interview, Wallpaper, Rolling Stone, Fortune, Esquire, Bon Appetit, Oprah, Travel and Leisure ... they want a visual experience, spiritual depth, and a reading experience.

"This is not an 'urban' magazine per se. It is a city magazine for global thinkers. We are recreating the medium."
With all these targeted ethnicities, I wonder what language the medium will be recreated in.

February 13, 2007

KCAL 9, Meet Wikipedia

REPORTING ON A LIST OF most annoying sounds, KCAL 9's Linda Alvarez:
"And tenth was mains humming. We don't know what that is."
It's power line humming, Linda. I looked it up for you.

February 12, 2007

New Business Opens in Atwater Village Without Telling Me

Lux Decor, Who Are You?
WHO ARE YOU, LUX DECOR? Tell me of your furniture, accessories and antiques. All I know now is how you sit between LA Bread and Soler Dental on Los Feliz Boulevard.

Mine may not be the best-written or most-read blog in Los Angeles. But it does attract at least 150 readers every weekday. On good days, when I bait Curbed LA, Franklin Avenue or LAist into linking to me, it's closer to 250. Last month: 5,000 total visitors.

Most are looking for information about Atwater Village. (Duh.) Some specifically want to learn about neighborhood restaurants and businesses. (Canele, anyone?) So keep me in the loop:
atwatervillagenewbie [at] gmail [dot] com
That's atwatervillagenewbie, all one word, followed by the @ sign (shift-2 on most keyboards), followed by gmail.com (the world's greatest free email service).

Send me a flier or a coupon or something. I can't promise coverage. And if I do, I might not say nice things. But I'm spittin' distance from all the business districts along Los Feliz Blvd., Glendale Blvd, and Fletcher Drive. And it's just an email we're talking about.

Follow That Crime Wave

Mysterious Tire Circles at Valleybrink and Sunnynook
BURNING RUBBER AS GATEWAY CRIME? Looks like it takes about two months to go from popping wheelies to popping caps in someone's ass. Broken window theory? Maybe they should call it flat tire theory.

Tea Cups Full of Rain

Tea Cups After the Rain
"YOU GONNA POST THOSE?" wondered a Disneyland "cast member" assigned to re-starting the Mad Tea Party attraction after this weekend's rain.

Yes sir, I think I might.

Now, back to your mopping!

Explains Wikipedia, the 1955 attraction is "unable to run in the rain, once the turntables are saturated with a moderate amount of water they slip and can no longer spin."

Explained another cast member to the disappointed father of two-year-olds: "It'll be about an hour before the tires dry."

February 8, 2007

Rascals: Better Luck Next Year

Rascals Get Behind Mural
IT'S AWARD SEASON IN GANGLAND. And the Rascals of Atwater Village were left off Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's list of most dangerous gangs. (PDF here.)

Hardly one of LA's largest multi-level outdoor marketing and youth leadership organizations, the Rascals will no doubt continue to terrorize northeast Los Angeles residents with persistent re-painting of the backside of murals and giant purple walls.

And the winners are:
  • 204th Street (Harbor Gateway)
  • Canoga Park Alabama
  • 18th Street (Westside)
  • Avenues (Northeast Division)
  • Grape Street Crips (Southeast)
  • Black P-Stones (Southwest)
  • La Mirada Locos (Rampart, Northeast)
  • Mara Salvatrucha (Rampart, Hollywood, Wilshire)
  • Rollin' 40s (Southwest)
  • Rollin' 30s (Southwest)
  • Rollin' 60s (77th Street Division)

Sunday Drive Through Lost City of Tropico

Sunday Drive, Los Angeles, 1912
LIKE A LANDLOCKED ATLANTIS, the lost city of Tropico, California (1911-1917), exists only in our imaginations. And on some old maps.

This map from 1912 shows a suggested Sunday drive from Los Angeles to points north, winding along the macadamized (paved with crushed stone) Los Feliz Avenue.

Drivers would pass Griffith Park and cross into the Los Angeles neighborhood of Atwater Village, bordering the City of Tropico. (Where the symbol indicates "gas and oil" and "garage.")

Tropico voted itself out of existence in 1917, and was annexed to the City of Glendale. It remains today as a Glendale neighborhood [PDF], bordered by Chevy Chase Drive on the north, Glendale Avenue on the east and Atwater Village on the west.

February 7, 2007

Want to Build a Monorail Down the LA River?

GREAT IDEA, DON SWEENEY. And in Atwater Village we already have transit-oriented development to go with it!

Unless you were thinking yuppies in multi-story condos rather than squatters in riverbed camps.

Hmm, How Would I Improve Hyperion Bridge

Paging Eric Garcetti's Office
BIKE PATH ACCESS AND EARTHQUAKE-PROOFING might be nice. But how about the ability for pedestrians to cross the bridge without wading through inches of garbage and broken glass? Surely the bridge improvement budget will afford a broom.
UPDATE! A few weeks later the trash was bagged up. The bags sat by the side of Glendale Blvd. for a while, maybe a week, but now they're gone.

February 6, 2007

Serial Number 37029

Serial Number 37029
ON RIVERSIDE DRIVE near Atwater Village, February 6, 2007. More at LAPDonline.org and LAPD blog.
UPDATE: The Riverside Drive traffic light being installed nearby at the time of the accident is now operating.

Must Have Crossed in the Mail

FROM THIS MORNING'S latimes.com:

From this morning's disney.com:

Way to give that last-minute push.

From the 'It's Got To Be An Act' Department

A budding Rolling Stone "journalist" whines: "Tony Toni Tone lied to me. They told a young girl that 'It Never Rains in Southern California.'"

Tony Toni Tone? If Albert Hammond had a grave, he'd be the one rolling.
RELATED: Hear new tracks from the next generation of Hammonds. Rock Insider and Cause=Time post new songs by Albert Hammond Jr., he of The Strokes fame. (Even more embarrassing for above journo.)

February 5, 2007

Atwater Chatter - Midwinter Heat Wave Edition

casitas_ave001, originally uploaded by Luis Lopez.

This afternoon I felt the temperature suddenly rise. Like the LA River had belched hot air. Yum! Let's taste some other neighborhood noise.
  • Big Surprise: 91 percent of people surveyed by Friends of Atwater Village agree with Friends of Atwater Village that they don't care for the proposed 90-unit Casitas Avenue housing project.

  • Downside: Architectural firm Patterns is no longer designing the 90-unit Casitas Avenue housing project.

  • Downside II: So Casitas Avenue will look like this a while longer.

  • Art Opening: Dan Wooster paints "life in the present moment," opens at J. Ferrari Gallery Feb. 10.

  • Opening Books: Kids books for a quarter? Atwater Village Branch Library sale, Feb. 10.

  • Deliciosa: Try a dosa at India Sweets & Spices.

LA Times Eyes Atwater Village

From LA Times West Magazine
Our sliver in northeast Los Angeles gets a whole page to itself in yesterday's LA Times West Magazine. Covered:
  • Jill's Paint, 3534 Larga Ave. - "Has Home Depot and its ilk trounced"
  • Fantasy bungalows, 3636-3742 Brunswick Ave. - "Built in the 1920s by real estate agent Barney B. Kenoffel, who was believed to have been inspired by silent-film sets and sensational newspaper reports about the discovery of King Tut's tomb"
  • Club Tee Gee, 3210 Glendale Blvd. - "Popular hangout celebrated its 60th anniversary with a soiree attended by Councilmen Tom LaBonge and Eric Garcetti"
  • Tacos Villa Corona, 3185 Glendale Blvd. - Named for the burritos the owner's mother made for her father
  • Los Feliz Municipal Golf Course - "Favorite of struggling actors after it was featured in the indie hit 'Swingers'"
  • Los Feliz Cafe, 3207 Los Feliz Blvd.- "Often-packed greasy spoon"
Not covered: LA Times' own darling bistro, Canele, 3219 Glendale Blvd., which the paper raves about here, here and here.

February 4, 2007

Super Bowl Sunday in a City That's OK Without It

$1.00 Worth of Guinness
    Subtitled: Third Bar's a Charm
We hail from Colorado, home of the two-time Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos. In Colorado, even if you don't care about sports, you care about professional football. You especially care about championship games. (With or without John Elway.) And on game day, you care to park your car safely away from flammable material.

But now we live in Los Angeles - a great city, to be sure, but not one that bothers much with the NFL. Oscar Night clears grocery shelves, but what would Super Bowl Sunday bring?

We ventured downtown, on advice of Thrillist, to see what was what. The plan: park at Metro Rail, ride downtown, and gulp beer and fried food under giant screens at Trifecta.

Not so fast, said the Avenue 26 park-n-ride. We don't take your fancy plastic. Cash only, bub. Back to your car. Forget saving the planet. Hope you saved enough for parking downtown.

Oh no you don't, repeated Trifecta. Without reservations there's a 30-minute wait and a $50 minimum per person. Or you can stand behind the people standing at the bar. Quipped a clever hostess: "Way to plan ahead."

Good luck here too, smirked Grand Avenue Sports Bar. "Maybe someone will share a table with you."

Venturing on from these sellouts, we noticed an unusual attribute both joints had in common: quiet. No one was yelling at the TV. No one was color commentating from their beers. We heard the game and the occasional clinking glass. Not much else. (How... respectful?)

One final attempt to salvage Super Bowl Sunday led us to Casey's Irish Pub & Grille. Table for two, facing the screen, no waiting, no minimum. Happy hour prices with $3 Guinness and decent pub food. Reminded us of My Brother's Bar, a favorite from Denver.

Only quieter.

Nominee for Least Valuable Holiday

Manhattan Beach
Who cares if there might be six more weeks of winter when Ground Hog Day looks like this? Besides, no self-respecting LA ground hog would take a meeting before 10am.

February 2, 2007

Delicious (But Oily) Review

Atwater Village's re-opened Canele (3219 Glendale Blvd.) gets slicked up by the Potatomato blog:
  • "On a Friday night, it's completely full..."
  • "Good hang out spot for the local hipsters..."
  • "Light (but oily) pasta..."
  • "I enjoyed the plate very much...
  • "Though every bite is mouthful of oil...
  • "Everything is soaked in oil..."
  • "Amount of oil they use ... is a bit scary."

February 1, 2007

Before and After: Glendale-Hyperion Viaduct

From I-5 North to Glendale Blvd.
Bike path would be nice. But how about making the Glendale-Hyperion viaduct and bridge system more earthquake proof? The city of Los Angeles is required to recruit public suggestions. First chance: Feb. 8, 7:00pm, Glenfeliz Elementary School, 3955 Glenfeliz Blvd.

Glendale Blvd. Viaduct Improvements

Judging a Phone Book By Its Cover

Northeast LA Phone Book Filled with Valuable Information About Northwest LA
With barely a thud this week my new AT&T phone book arrived. Moving from a city that jams dozens of suburbs into a single metro-area encyclopedia, I was excited to see this slender volume in my new hometown.

One handy book with only listings from Silver Lake, Los Feliz and Atwater Village? Count me in. As a resident of northeastern Los Angeles, I fully intended to use it. (Next time my computer was off, of course.)

Then I opened the phone book.

Inside is a different story. And a different geography. The listings, the maps and the ads are all for northwestern Los Angeles.

Under Birds & Bird Supplies (p. 55) for example, you don't find Pampered Birds on Glendale. But you do see Omar's Exotic Birds on Santa Monica. (Omar's, by the way, is not on Santa Monica any more. And it has a new phone number.)

So thanks anyway (new!) AT&T for all the fascinating information about West Hollywood and environs. But I'll just keep my computer on.