CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 5, 2008
Last week, Out There visited Hawthorne, where community activist Viviana Franco has spent much of her adult life trying to build a park on a small, barren lot. After the City Council declined to sign off on Franco's request that City Hall commit to long-term maintenance of the park, her options narrowed considerably. Many readers were unhappy that Franco has been unable to gain traction. A sample of reader response: "Green space matters. When you are surrounded by a concrete jungle, you can appreciate a small serene park where you can go and feel safe and enjoy a little nature at its best."
August 24, 2008 |
For someone whose No. 1 fear is drowning, I'll admit: Silverwood Lake wasn't the most logical choice for a day trip. Nor was renting a 135-horsepower water rocket. But I believe the best way to confront a fear is to head right into it. I'm also a motorcyclist. So I combined my fear of water with a general enthusiasm for power sports and motored through my anxiety aboard a blazing yellow Sea-Doo. The 1.5 million Americans who ride these "personal watercraft," better known as Jet Skis, Sea-Doos and WaveRunners, probably don't share my fear.
March 12, 2006 |
Bamboo Lane It is as much a part of his daily ritual as practicing the martial arts he teaches at the Aikido Center of Los Angeles. Every day at about 4 p.m. Kensho Furuya washes down the narrow loading dock of the 100-plus-year-old sugar warehouse that he has converted into his samurai dojo. He's also transformed the dock itself with bamboo architectural elements, river rocks and lush foliage.
March 9, 2006 |
"DO you hear that?" Bob Shanman asks fervently as he leads a dozen bird-watchers toward a clump of shrubs in the Madrona Marsh Nature Preserve in Torrance. "That's them!" His followers, mostly middle-aged birding enthusiasts, rub the sleep out of their eyes as they traipse through one of Southern California's last vernal marshlands, a 50-acre enclosure of marshes and grasslands, ringed by urban sprawl.
February 22, 2005 |
To the singular sounds of San Francisco -- cable cars, foghorns, gridlocked drivers waxing poetic -- add the siren scream of a flock of wild parrots. Inhabitants of Telegraph Hill for at least a decade, the flock of cherry-headed conures flew under the radar until Mark Bittner, a resident of the Greenwich Steps on Telegraph Hill, became fascinated with them. He fed them, named them, studied them and, when some became ill, took them into his home and cared for them.
June 28, 1999 |
Michael Braxton was approaching his teenage years, already trapped in a wretched environment of dropouts, drugs and truancy. The Baltimore youth had few friends, his grades were slipping, and his chances of escaping a future on the streets seemed bleak. But an African experience is helping Michael turn his life around.