Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsJohn Balzar
IN THE NEWS

John Balzar

FEATURED ARTICLES
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
November 15, 2005 | John Balzar
THERE are only seven or eight quiet places remaining in the United States. Fewer than 10. In the entire nation. Barely more than half a dozen in all the parks, wilderness, refuges and "wild" spaces that we treasure. Fewer all the time. Quiet is going extinct. These thoughts turn over in the mind as you explore one of these few quiet places left in North America, perhaps the quietest of them all.
Advertisement
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 1997
Re "A Passion for Canines, Cold Winds," March 8: What a wonderful piece on the Yukon Quest--very moving. On a 79 degree day in Pasadena, I could almost feel the cold. Thank you for such vivid writing, John Balzar. CAROLYN WIELAND Pasadena
NEWS
September 6, 2005 | John Balzar
WE know why blue whales cross open ocean to visit our coastal waters. We know, more or less, where to find them, and usually when. In fact, we understand quite a few things about these majestic giants. Knowing about the blue whale, however, is not entirely the same as comprehending it. You can appreciate, for instance, that these are the largest animals ever to roam our planet -- bigger than the dinosaurs, heavy as locomotives.
OPINION
July 8, 2001
Re "Is Spenser Still for Hire?" Commentary, July 1: Having taught and coached high school youth for 29 years, I can say to John Balzar that many are still for hire--and willing at the same time--to set an example for the kids. Like Balzar, I have read almost all of Robert B. Parker's Spenser novels as well as John D. MacDonald's Travis McGee series for the relaxation, escapism and succinct philosophical aphorisms put in a variety of creative contexts. Fortunately, my bottom line is not dependent upon deceiving myself and others, as Balzar discusses, but rather on living and teaching such maxims as the ones found in "Potshot."
OPINION
January 24, 1999
In the guise of a Saturday Journal story about the Ernest Hemingway centennial (Jan. 16), John Balzar has given us an example of the Hemingway style at its very best. Hemingway's life, with its strengths and weaknesses, was vividly evoked by the quality of the prose describing it. As a former journalist himself, Hemingway would have been proud to see his hard-learned writing lessons in newspaper columns. Bravo. PAMELA DE MAIGRET, Los Angeles
OPINION
January 1, 2002
Re "Feast (Slowly) on the Buffet of Life," by John Balzar, Commentary, Dec. 23: While slower is better, if you want health your "approach to food and life" must be this: You'll have to eat more of some things and less of others. You'd better eat spare; You'd better not fry; You'd better eat in, I'm tellin' you why: Heart disease is coming to town. James A. Sadtler Hacienda Heights
NEWS
January 13, 2004
John Balzar ("Grasping for Air," Jan. 6) expresses some wonderment at sailboat racing's appeal. As a teenager in the 1930s, racing Snowbirds and Flatties, I was attracted to H.A. Calahan's book "Learning to Race." For him, the appeal of racing is a striving for perfection, the search to duplicate the perfection experienced by each of us in that early flight of the stork, beneath those great wings. Nicely put. I have to take Balzar to task for using "knots per hour." "Knots," by itself, is nautical miles per hour.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 4, 2004
Re "Blazing Trails to Urban Freedom," by John Balzar, Nov. 2: There should be no debate among cyclists about the need to stop at all red lights if they would simply learn and obey the rules of the road that apply identically to motorists and cyclists, as delineated in the California Driver Handbook. Most cyclists are either ignorant of their responsibilities and rights or are overwhelmingly indifferent to them, considering themselves privileged, with no obligation to know or observe the law. Cyclists' observance of the rules would surely eliminate most of the friction with motorists.
OPINION
April 25, 2002
Re "Earth Could Use Friends Like Abbey," Commentary, April 21: I usually enjoy and agree with John Balzar. However, this time I couldn't understand what he was trying to say, other than he liked some guy named Edward Abbey. Out of respect for Balzar's past writing I stuck with the commentary to discover in the last paragraph what I thought was obvious to all. Balzar says the reason to be concerned about the environment is that it is good for humans to have a clean, sustainable place to live.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2005
Why was "Bricks, Mortar and Our Values" [by John Balzar, March 9] in the Calendar section? It is more worthy of front-page placement -- further evidence of the Bushies' and their right-wing religious supporters' belief that the Rapture is coming soon and will save them from the huge deficits, the increasing nuclear threat, global warming, mercury-, arsenic-, lead-, PDBE [polybrominated diphenyl ethers]-poisoning and deteriorating infrastructure. The rest of us will just have to be personally responsible for our own tiny piece of the "ownership society."
ENTERTAINMENT
December 4, 2004
Re "Blazing Trails to Urban Freedom," by John Balzar, Nov. 2: There should be no debate among cyclists about the need to stop at all red lights if they would simply learn and obey the rules of the road that apply identically to motorists and cyclists, as delineated in the California Driver Handbook. Most cyclists are either ignorant of their responsibilities and rights or are overwhelmingly indifferent to them, considering themselves privileged, with no obligation to know or observe the law. Cyclists' observance of the rules would surely eliminate most of the friction with motorists.
NEWS
October 12, 2004 | John Balzar
Getting back to the basics is not so simple, at least when it comes to our pastimes. Yearnings are apt to collide. What we need in the pursuit of fun is not always the same as what is necessary, is it? Rock climbers long ago gave up hammers and hardware. Freedivers discovered the quiet sounds of the living reef. Yet countervailing enticements of "progress" continue to pull in the opposite direction.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 12, 2004
John BALZAR asks "So, how can you resist?" about the general aviation industry's bid to make private piloting fashionable ("It's the Air Up There," June 5). Mr. Balzar, please consider: the last time your quiet was ruined by the angry whine of a private plane (or have we grown too used to that abuse?) the last time The Times reported on a fatal small plane crash into a residential neighborhood (not many people walk away from this kind of accident) our country's ominously growing loss of energy independence.
NEWS
May 18, 2004 | John Balzar
An empty chair threw its shadow across the meadow: a tall-backed, scuffed, swivel writing chair, looming in its emptiness. The writing chair was one that Edward Abbey used. And when you know that, you can understand how long and how broad the shadow was. Only rarely, once every few generations or so, a figure rises to stand above others as inspirational guardian of America's defining heritage -- its raw, open outdoors.
NEWS
January 27, 2004 | John Balzar
In the main cabin of the boat Sundiver, braced against the rock of ocean swells, two divers listen. They listen to the gurgle of their blood as it courses through the large veins of their shoulders. They listen for the sounds of trouble. They listen to the result of descending into the winter Pacific twice as deep as the maximum for ordinary recreational scuba -- and maybe deeper even than that. They're not telling exactly.
BOOKS
July 30, 1995
Thank you for John Balzar's understanding and insightful review of John Hockenberry's "Moving Violations" on the cover of today's Book Review section. But as a long-time wheelchair user myself, I was somewhat put off by the review's title, "A Minority of One." Fact is, the U.S. government estimates some 49 million Americans have a disability--making us the single largest minority group in the country! Ironically, Balzar astutely points out: "Hockenberry tells an intimate, personal story about a minority group for which each of us remains fully eligible."
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2005
Why was "Bricks, Mortar and Our Values" [by John Balzar, March 9] in the Calendar section? It is more worthy of front-page placement -- further evidence of the Bushies' and their right-wing religious supporters' belief that the Rapture is coming soon and will save them from the huge deficits, the increasing nuclear threat, global warming, mercury-, arsenic-, lead-, PDBE [polybrominated diphenyl ethers]-poisoning and deteriorating infrastructure. The rest of us will just have to be personally responsible for our own tiny piece of the "ownership society."
NEWS
January 13, 2004
John Balzar ("Grasping for Air," Jan. 6) expresses some wonderment at sailboat racing's appeal. As a teenager in the 1930s, racing Snowbirds and Flatties, I was attracted to H.A. Calahan's book "Learning to Race." For him, the appeal of racing is a striving for perfection, the search to duplicate the perfection experienced by each of us in that early flight of the stork, beneath those great wings. Nicely put. I have to take Balzar to task for using "knots per hour." "Knots," by itself, is nautical miles per hour.
NEWS
January 6, 2004 | John Balzar
JUST BEFORE NOON, THE CREW THROWS CHA-CHA-CHA'S lines and the boat eases from the dock, turning snout-first into the wind. The mainsail flashes 56 feet skyward with a fluid tug. Then the oversized jib. Screech, ker-thunk. The sails pillow into the hollow shape of an airplane wing. Cha-Cha-Cha awakens, leaning onto her side and bearing off in a glide.
Los Angeles Times Articles
|