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November 2, 2013 | By John Cherwa
Trainer Bob Baffert found himself back in the overpopulated winner's circle as Secret Circle came late to win the $1.5-million Breeders' Cup Sprint by a neck. The six-furlong sprint is the shortest race in the Cup. Secret Circle went off as the favorite with jockey Martin Garcia, who picked up his second Breeders' Cup win of the day. He and Baffert previously won the Juvenile with New Year's Day. Secret Circle, a 4-year-old colt, paid $7, $4.80 and $3.60. Laugh Track, a strong second, returned $13.40 and $8.60 while Gentleman's Bet paid $7. "He's an amazing horse," said Jimmy Barnes, an assistant to Baffert.
October 31, 2013 | By Hector Tobar
The most memorable magic in Daniel Alarcon's engaging and illuminating new novel, "At Night We Walk in Circles," comes when his three main characters, all actors, perform on various stages in their impoverished but beautiful country. Nelson, Henry and Patalarga are actors in a guerrilla theater company, performing the same satirical play again and again on a journey through the provinces of an unnamed Latin American country. Their "tour" has no set itinerary and their "theater" might be the living room of a local resident one night or an open field on the outskirts of a village the next.
October 3, 2013 | By David Pagel
Albert Contreras is making the best paintings of his life. One hundred and eighteen of them, all made over the last few months, fill Peter Mendenhall Gallery with enough luscious color to put a sunset to shame. Next to the 81-year-old-artist's glitter-sprinkled paintings, Liberace's costumes look like outfits your grandmother might wear, when she wasn't up to anything special. Screaming pinks, screeching yellows and blazing whites transform the intimately scaled main gallery into an operatic tone poem.
October 3, 2013 | Carolyn Kellogg
From "Brave New World" to "The Hunger Games," dystopian fiction generally presents a closed, ostensibly perfect society from the point of view of the outsider who doesn't fit in. The less-often told story is what it's like to be part of the crowd. Who accepts the words of the powerful? What kind of person would that be? Someone like Mae Holland, the main character in Dave Eggers' new near-future novel, "The Circle. " As a believer, her motivations are sometimes just beyond Eggers' reach; what's more important is the role she plays as a functionary in an online company ravenous for data, with ambitions for tracking people that could make the National Security Agency quail.
August 14, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
As a general rule, by the time August rolls around, publishers have announced all their fall books. But there are always exceptions to rules, and Dave Eggers is an exception. Eggers has a new novel, "The Circle," coming out in October, news of which was kept quiet until the N.Y. Times spotted it Tuesday. "Dave Eggers is perfecting the art of sneaking onto bookshelves," John Williams wrote , noting that Eggers' 2012 novel " A Hologram for the King " was published less than a month after it was announced by publishing house McSweeneys, which the author founded.
July 22, 2013 | By Jane Engle
Oceania Cruises is taking bookings for its first world cruise, and it's thinking big. Instead of the usual globe-circling voyages, which top out at around 110 days, this one will last 180 days. The aim is to create “a unique port-intensive voyage that reflects the dreams of the true explorer,” said Kunal S. Kamlani, president of the upscale line. Travel will be aboard the 684-passenger Insignia, which will cruise round trip from Miami and visit five continents, 44 countries and 89 ports of call in 2015.
July 17, 2013 | Chris Erskine
What do I know of life? For years, I thought Taco Bell was a Mexican phone company. I thought Hash Tag was a mouthy wide receiver for the Atlanta Falcons. So when I got wind of the Swiss Forrest Gump, an adventurer who ran 25,422 miles over five years till he'd circled the world, his beautiful green-eyed wife riding along on a motorcycle the whole time with their supplies, I wasn't sure if I had a column or a Nobel Prize candidate. A marathon a day, five days a week, for five years.
July 11, 2013 | By Isabella Alsobrook
In California, artichokes are seasonal during spring but they also pop up again in early fall. Grapefruits, although considered a winter fruit, are available during the spring and summer too. Apricots are better in early summer but pears are better in late summer, or is it the other way around? And what about asparagus? Thankfully, you don't have to memorize any of this. Save yourself the headache with the Southern California Local Foods Wheel . The Local Foods Wheel , created by Jessica Prentice , Sarah Klein and Maggie Gosselin, is a nifty little resource, perfect for anyone interested in local food.
July 4, 2013 | By Paresh Dave
Be prepared to freak out. Applications recently released by researchers from two universities can give Gmail users a good sense of how valuable their email accounts might be to malicious hackers and law enforcement investigators. Cloudsweeper , developed at University of Illinois at Chicago, scans emails to find any mention of passwords or password resets. Based on the black market price for the type of account details found in the email data, Cloudsweeper tells the user how much his or her Gmail account is worth to a hacker.
June 25, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
Hundreds of taxicabs inched around Los Angeles City Hall on Tuesday morning, horns blaring in unison, to protest against a trio of so-called high-tech bandit taxi companies that let smartphone users summon a car with the swipe of a finger. Lyft, Sidecar and Uber provide iPhone and Android apps that connect drivers with people who need a ride, either in a town-car-like vehicle or a private car paid for with a "donation" rather than a fare. Use of the apps, often marketed as a cheaper, more casual alternative to taxis, has rapidly gained popularity in Los Angeles - except with city officials, who say the cars used for rides operate illegally, outside the city's background check, inspection and insurance processes.
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