May 29, 1994 |
It was in Eugene, Oregon, in April of 1971 that I ran across a public library copy of Carey McWilliams' "Southern California Country: An Island on the Land"--and with it the crime that formed the basis for "Chinatown." It wasn't the compendium of facts in the chapter "Water! Water! Water!" or indeed in the entire book. It was that Carey McWilliams wrote about Southern California with sensibilities my eye, ear, and nose recognized. Along with Chandler he made me feel that he'd not only walked down the same streets and into the same arroyo--he smelled the eucalyptus, heard the humming of high tension wires, saw the same bleeding Madras landscapes--and so a sense of deja vu was underlined by a sense of jamais vu: No writers had ever spoken as strongly to me about my home.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 29, 2012 |
It wasn't long ago that Liz Lopez watched in dismay as the Vannord Shopping Center in her Panorama City neighborhood went downhill, losing its anchor, Valley Foods Warehouse, among a number of other tenants. So Lopez, 33, and her mother, Delmy Lopez, 65, made it a point to attend Friday's grand opening of the Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market. They stood patiently with about 200 other soon-to-be shoppers, waiting for the speeches to end so they could push their carts through the store's sliding doors.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 21, 2012 |
SAN FRANCISCO - Its decaying architecture, fluorescent lighting and kitchen prep sink wedged next to a toilet have served as fodder for a ribbing by comedian Conan O'Brien . Its 3 a.m. closing time made it a favorite for late-night club hoppers But most of all, the Sam Wo Restaurant in the heart of Chinatown was a haven for unassuming regulars and curious tourists - who for decades streamed through the cramped kitchen and up a narrow staircase...
March 22, 2013 |
Sometimes it's hard to do good. For example, donating leftover banquet food to charity. Shirley Wei Sher, a Marina del Rey immigration lawyer, discovered how challenging this can be when she recently tried to prevent leftovers at an upcoming meeting of the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Assn. from being thrown away. Sher, 33, sits on the board of the organization and is helping plan the group's annual awards banquet at a Chinatown restaurant next month. As many as 1,000 people are expected to attend.
September 20, 1985 |
Los Angeles in 1860 was already a city of substantial brick buildings where cultured circles held "frequent card parties, balls, picnics, serenades, 'sociables' and suppers," according to a recent historical study. But the dusty pueblo was also "a center of crime, violence and vigilante action. Each week," according to another study, "the Star (newspaper) reported new killings and shooting sprees."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 22, 1987 |
On a high shelf in Henry Chang's bustling herb shop sits a glass jar with a coiled, plump rattlesnake drowned in whiskey. It is smiling. There are worse ways to die. "You want to drink some of my rattlesnake whiskey?" Chang offers. "It's good for you," says the agile, 84-year-old proprietor of Essential Chinese Herbs in Chinatown, for more than a century a supplier of herbs to doctors of traditional Oriental medicine in Los Angeles.
July 24, 2004
Re "Political Wind Shifts in S.F.'s Chinatown," July 18: I agree with Rose Park's comment that the continual fighting between KMT [Kuomintang] in Taiwan and Communist China to win over the San Francisco Chinese does not advance causes of the Chinese community. Overseas Chinese communities have been used as battlegrounds in the past. This extension of the civil war in China since 1911 into major cities in North America has drained much-needed resources in the Chinese community to deal with local issues.
September 1, 1985
Cimino's film "Year of the Dragon" and Sheila Benson's review of it, are both travesties of information (" 'Dragon'--A Compelling Look Inside Chinatown," Aug. 16). Benson implicates her woeful lack of knowledge of any Chinatown by calling the film "part documentary." "Year of the Dragon" is about as much a documentary as is a soft drink commercial. The real danger in this film is that it reinforces an unrealistic portrayal of people. Film and TV do influence us. If all we see are the Chinese as gangsters, women as victims and policemen as corrupt, we slowly begin to believe it. Benson's review sadly reinforces the celluloid image as a true one, and as such is an act of irresponsibility.