This Los Angeles mayoral election isn’t exactly setting the city's electorate on fire. Nor the world, for that matter.
It’s so low key that I was surprised to see a very focused piece in the Guardian, Britain’s liberal national newspaper -- an intense analysis of the methodology of a Times-USC poll about a race that even the candidates’ hometown isn’t paying much attention to.
Former Mayor Sam Yorty once told me, in what I think was the last interview he gave, that when he traveled the world as mayor in the 1960s, people would say to him, “Los Angeles … Los Angeles … is that anywhere near Hollywood?”
Hollywood, a mere neighborhood within Los Angeles, used to be a prim little town that banned liquor, yet it still eclipses, in the world’s imagination, the vast quarters of the rest of regular-folk L.A., and is still a cliche that, in strangers’ minds, characterizes the whole of the city.
That, along with the dreary fact that the runoff candidates are battling to find differences between themselves, and the reality that L.A.’s mayor has less clout than the mayors of New York and Chicago, doesn’t help to muster up attention that goes much beyond the journo cliches of laid-back, quirky and glam.