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August 13, 2012 | By Susan King, Los Angeles Times
Lupe Velez was a dynamo whose talent popped off the screen. The Mexican-born beauty, who came to fame in Douglas Fairbanks' 1927 adventure, "The Gaucho," could do anything - comedy, musicals, drama. And she could hold her own with the biggest stars, including the classic comedy team of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy. In the 1934 musical comedy "Hollywood Party," Velez manages to steal a slapstick scene with the duo that involves breaking eggs. "The thing I really enjoy about Lupe Velez is the sheer joy she takes in performing - you don't often seen that," said film historian Richard Barrios, author of "A Song in the Dark: The Birth of the Musical Film.
August 2, 2012 | By Jon Bardin, Los Angeles Times
If you're still skeptical that a tan can be dangerous, consider this: Scientists have found that wild fish are getting skin cancer from ultraviolet radiation. Approximately 15% of coral trout inAustralia'sGreat Barrier Reef had cancerous lesions on their scales. In that regard, they resemble Australians who live on land - 2 in 3 people who live down under will be diagnosed with skin cancer before the age of 70, the highest rate in the world. It's probably no coincidence that Australia is under the Earth's biggest hole in the ozone layer.
July 27, 2012 | By Lisa Dillman
LONDON -- Organizers of the London Olympics did exactly what they intended. They surprised the world. Roger Bannister, the first man to break the four-minute barrier in a mile race, did not take the final torch leg to light the Olympic flame as many had expected. Instead it was a ceremony of inclusion. Seven young athletes, the hope of the sports future in Britain, were joined by past icons in the torch ceremony Friday night in the opening ceremony. The youngsters moved to the center of the field of play and each lighted a stem that ignited more than 200 petals.
June 9, 2012 | By Esmeralda Bermudez, Los Angeles Times
They weren't the most flattering addition to the neighborhood, and three years after the devastating Station fire the foothills of La Crescenta are bidding farewell to nearly half a mile of concrete barriers installed to guard against mudslides. The K-rails, as they're known, were put in place in La Crescenta and La Cañada Flintridge soon after the fire burned more than 160,000 acres, incinerating trees and shrubbery on hillsides that typically kept mud from spilling into homes during heavy rains.
June 6, 2012 | By Patt Morrison
By this time in November, three women of color could be filling what are arguably the top three positions of justice and law enforcement in California -- the same state that was the first to send two women to the U.S. Senate. In Tuesday's primary, Los Angeles County's chief deputy district attorney, Jackie Lacey, put some voter daylight between herself and her second-highest challenger, fellow prosecutor Alan Jackson, in the race to succeed Steve Cooley as district attorney.
June 6, 2012 | By Rebecca Trounson, Los Angeles Times
It's not easy growing up gay in America, despite the nation's increasing acceptance of same-sex marriage and other issues of gay equality. Gay and lesbian teenagers across the United States are less likely to be happy, more likely to report harassment and more inclined to experiment with drugs and alcohol than the nation's straight teens, according to a new nationwide survey of more than 10,000 gay and lesbian young people. The survey , which will be released Thursday by the Human Rights Campaign, aWashington, D.C.-based civil rights group, is described as one of the largest ever to focus on the nation's gay youth.
May 25, 2012 | By John Bateson
As San Francisco hosts a citywide birthday party for the Golden Gate Bridge's 75th anniversary, one thing that won't be celebrated is the fact that the bridge continues to be the world's top suicide site. Since it opened on May 27, 1937, there have been an estimated 1,600 deaths in which the body was recovered, and many more unconfirmed. The data for 2011 underscore this reality: 37 people died jumping off the bridge last year, according to the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District.
May 3, 2012 | By Tina Susman
New concrete barriers are being erected along elevated stretches of a New York City roadway after a weekend crash that killed seven members of a family. The accident occurred when the family's SUV toppled over one of the original railings and crashed upside-down into the Bronx Zoo . As transit workers continued their work Thursday morning on the Bronx River Parkway, relatives were preparing for a wake in the afternoon and a funeral Friday for the dead; they ranged from an 85-year-old grandfather to his 3-year-old granddaughter.
May 1, 2012 | By Pamela Samuelson
Since 2002, at first in secret and later with great fanfare, Google has been working to create a digital collection of all the world's books, a library that it hopes will last forever and make knowledge far more universally accessible. But from the beginning, there has been an obstacle even more daunting than the project's many technical challenges: copyright law. Ideally, a digital library would provide access not only to books free from copyright constraints (those published before 1923)
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