CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 4, 2010 |
A restaurant with a past? A historic marker on Figueroa Street mentions a rumor about the 86-year-old Original Pantry Cafe "that has refused to die." The story has it that in the 1950s, a Midwestern reporter covering the Rose Bowl dropped in to eat and "a couple of waiters had some fun with the out-of-towner, telling him that all the employees were ex-convicts," the marker says. "He duly wrote it up, and the legend, for that's all there is to it, circulates to this day." Who knows why the tale caught on?
January 18, 2007 |
DON'T tell the Brothers Grimm, but storyteller Leslie Perry has a bone to pick with the classic tale of poor little Cinderella. "She's a wimp!" he exclaims, pointing out the passivity of the main character. "Look, she doesn't make anything happen. She relies on magic, and she doesn't stand up for herself -- especially with her stepmother and sisters. A lot of fairy tales have this problem. That's why I prefer folk tales."
October 8, 2006 |
COLIN MELOY has probably never plucked a lyre, but the gesture would be appropriate. As leader of the Decemberists, Portland, Oregon's master purveyors of eccentric pop, Meloy pens lyrics that can seem as ancient as Homer: tales of seafarers and soldiers that songs have transported for thousands of years. "The Crane Wife," the band's new album, and its first on Capitol Records after several successful indie releases, continues his story collecting.
September 16, 2005 |
Elijah Wood has eyes like klieg lights, and to look at them directly for too long is to fear for your corneas, and to wonder what exactly is going on in that sizable but delicately featured head of his. For orbs so distinctive, they are oddly blank and mesmerizing. You half expect his irises to start swirling if you fix on them for too long. In Liev Schreiber's "Everything Is Illuminated," Wood's eyes seem to take in everything and reveal nothing. Which may have been the idea.
January 9, 2005 |
I come from storytellers. My grandfather, the best storyteller in the family, often taught his 22 grandchildren lessons through stories. Just before I left home for college, Granddaddy told me about a college girl who never drank or did drugs. He said, "She was a good church girl, just like you, Charlayne. One night she went to a party with some of her friends. There was dancin' in some rooms and people was watching a movie in the other. The college girl preferred to dance. While she was on the dance floor, somebody offered her a can of soda.
April 9, 2004 |
Scanning the mostly fresh, mostly young and largely bookish faces crowded into the Troubadour on Wednesday, you easily might have thought a comp lit seminar was about to break out. And that's kind of what happened -- albeit much more tuneful than anything you'd expect in a UCLA classroom.