The LAPD band was supposed to perform Friday at an MTA ceremony marking the takeover of MTA security duties by the LAPD and the county Sheriff's Department.
But the band didn't make it. Reason: Transportation never showed up. Transportation was supposed to be an MTA bus.
WELCOME TO L.A.: Arthur Verge of El Segundo came upon an out-of-stater's car whose sentimental bumper sticker obviously didn't sway a parking enforcement officer (see photo).
L.A.'s TROJAN RUINS: Not long after UCLA's football team defeated USC last year for the sixth consecutive time, Margaret Menninger of Redondo Beach noticed that Fodor's "Exploring California" guide identified two USC players in Cardinal and Gold uniforms as members of "UCLA's Bruins" (see photo). The conclusion was inescapable: The Bruins' domination over USC was so complete that they have begun taking prisoners.
ON THE OTHER HAND: If you are reading this column in the evening, you no doubt have heard that the underdog Trojans upset the once-mighty Bruins in the Coliseum this afternoon. Informed sources told me it was going to happen.
LIST OF THE DAY: It wasn't much of a beach day Friday so, instead, I opened "Santa Catalina Island: Its Magic, People and History,"a new book by William S. White and Steven Tice. Some interesting factoids:
* The fastest means of communication between the mainland and Catalina near the end of the 19th century was by carrier pigeon. A bird named Orlando transported messages from the Hotel Metropole in Avalon to Bunker Hill in 45 minutes.
* The first airplane flight from the mainland to Catalina, made in 1912 by Glenn Martin, took 27 minutes, breaking Orlando's record.
* Catalina resident Zane Grey, writer of Western novels featuring manly men, changed his own name. He was born Pearl Grey.
* William Wrigley, the onetime owner of Catalina, originally was in the soap business. His company began giving away packages of gum as promotional items and soon noticed that the gum was more popular than the soap.
* During World War II, "because most of the ingredients needed to make chewing gum were being diverted for use by the military," the Wrigley company temporarily ceased production for the public of Juicy Fruit, Doublemint and Spearmint.
In "Baseball Letters: A Fan's Correspondence With His Heroes," former Dodger pitcher Carl Erskine tells author Seth Swirsky that his most nervous moment on a baseball field came at Dodger Stadium in 1992, long after his retirement. Erskine wrote: "I played the Canadian and American national anthems before a Montreal / Dodger game on harmonica . . . 45,000 attendance . . . no mistakes."
Steve Harvey can be reached by phone at (213) 237-7083, by fax at (213) 237-4712, by e-mail at email@example.com and by mail at Metro, L.A. Times, Times Mirror Square, L.A. 90053. That is, unless UCLA defeats USC today.