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Extreme Sports

August 1, 2004 | George Dickie, Special to The Times
There was a time not long ago when the X Games weren't the mecca of action sports events that they are today. The year was 1995, and what was then known as the Extreme Games were held in Newport, Providence and Middletown, R.I., and Mount Snow, Vt. Nearly 200,000 spectators turned out over eight days to watch athletes compete in 27 events in nine sport categories, including bungee jumping, street luge and skysurfing.
March 23, 2004 | From Bloomberg News
General Electric Co.'s NBC and Clear Channel Communications Inc.'s Clear Channel Entertainment are creating the Action Sports Tour, a series of skateboarding, bicycle motocross and motorcycle motocross events that will have NASCAR-like point standings. The tour, scheduled to start next year, will be co-owned and operated by the two companies. NBC will produce the events and televise them on the network and a cable outlet that hasn't been chosen.
March 11, 2004 | Marc Weingarten, Special to The Times
Benjamin WEISSMAN is just your typical L.A. fiction-writing, ski-bumming, art-critiquing, canvas-painting hyphenate. Which is to say, he is an aberration. "Headless," his just-published short-story collection, is something of a literary anomaly as well, a playful melange of erotic black comedy and domestic pathos, dysfunctional families and all-too-functional men, dictators and lumberjacks.
February 24, 2004 | Joe Robinson, Special to The Times
With the casualty rate mounting from local residents setting out alone into the wilds of Southern California, it's clear that something must be done. It's time to ban solo driving and institute mandatory carpools to protect solitary motorists from the hazardous roads and freeways of the urban jungle. There are about 60 fatalities in motor vehicle collisions in the Southland each month, compared with eight wilderness-related deaths last month.
January 20, 2004
New sports seem to appear out of big air for ESPN's annual Winter X Games. Now in its seventh year, the games will feature motocross, skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and UltraCross, which pits skier-snowboarder teams in a relay race. This year, two demo sports will debut during the pumped-up event that runs Friday through Tuesday at Buttermilk Mountain in Aspen, Colo. (selected events will be broadcast live on TV).
November 11, 2003
As a 76-year-old hiker and docent-naturalist, I'm not into extreme sports, but it's fun to read about them. The coyote in the snow ("After the Fires," Nov. 4) touched me and the article on the vagrant bird ("They're All Atwitter in Compton," Nov. 4) delightfully illustrates the passion of birders. Betty Peterson La Canada Flintridge
August 27, 2003 | Kristina Sauerwein, Times Staff Writer
Mark Cannon needs a new challenge. He's already been strapped into a straitjacket and dangled from a hot-air balloon. He's been stuffed into a mailbag, cuffed at the wrists and ankles, and then tossed into a swimming pool. He's survived a wall of spikes that slammed down on his fully restrained body. Cannon could try the famed milk can escape perfected by his role model, the legendary Harry Houdini, but, frankly, it has become a bit quaint.
August 16, 2003 | Mike Bresnahan, Times Staff Writer
Meanwhile, during the rest of the year .... While the made-for-TV X Games make their annual weeklong splash on ESPN, a few TV networks and magazines are fighting for the extreme-sports pie the rest of the year. Fox Sports Net offers "54321," the first network-sponsored daily action-sports show. MTV has "Surfer Girls," a popular reality show. NBC will offer up 32 hours of extreme programming this year. TransWorld Media publishes 10 industry magazines.
August 15, 2003 | Bill Plaschke
The most extreme athlete at the X Games sips on his plain Pepsi and smiles. He is thinking about the plumbing fixtures for his new house. He is talking about an episode of "The Sopranos." He mentions the crazy thing he'll do next. "When I leave here, I think I'll have lunch with my wife and read USA Today," he says. The most bizarre competitor at the bizarre olympics is Dennis McCoy, a stunt bike rider who sticks out at this gnarly-fest like a manicured thumb.
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