February 7, 2014 |
SOCHI, Russia -- It isn't enough that Olympic athletes ride the rails with skill and verve, get to the bottom of the course faster than the rest of the field or even hurl stones with reasonable accuracy down a sheet of ice. That's just not sufficient any longer. How about adding singing, dancing and lip syncing to the Olympic motto of faster, higher, stronger? In the realm of parody videos, it all really picked up momentum two years ago at the Summer Games in London. USA Swimming's video, a visual rendition of Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe," went viral just before the Games, a byproduct of the vision of Olympic swimmers Kathleen Hersey, Caitlin Leverenz and Alyssa Anderson, and USA Swimming staffer Mark Russell.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 3, 2014 |
The list of would-be successors to longtime Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills) continued to grow on Monday. Attorney Barbara Mulvaney, a fomer senior trial attorney for the United International Tribunal for Rwanda and on the staff of the State Department in Iraq until just recently, said she is running and has already begun raising money. Mulvaney, 62, whose mother, the late Julie Mulvaney, worked for longtime local elected official Yvonne Brathwaite Burke and then-Los Angeles City Councilwoman Pat Russell, grew up in the area and said she plans to settle in Venice.
February 1, 2014 |
PESHAWAR, Pakistan - The Pakistani government's efforts to open peace talks with Islamist insurgents gathered steam Saturday when Taliban leaders nominated a five-member committee to represent them at the negotiating table. One of the five, however, was Pakistani opposition politician Imran Khan, who signaled late Saturday that he would decline the nomination. The other four nominees, all conservative Muslim clerics, appeared willing to represent the Pakistani Taliban in talks. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif surprised many observers last week by naming a four-man government commission to start negotiations with the Taliban despite insurgents' recent attacks aimed mainly at military installations.
January 31, 2014 |
WASHINGTON -- Consumer confidence slipped this month amid concerns about whether the recent upturn in momentum can be sustained, according to data released Friday. The consumer sentiment index from the University of Michigan and Thomson Reuters dropped to 81.2, from 82.5 the previous month. The reading was in line with economists' projections. The January figure was well above the 73.8 level recorded for the same month a year ago, and confidence was slightly improved from the preliminary January number.
January 3, 2014 |
The Kansas City Chiefs stayed undefeated longer than anyone any team, winning their first nine games, but their results are conspicuously light on victories over top-shelf opponents. They were swept in their division by Denver and San Diego, and two weeks ago lost at home to Indianapolis, 23-7. The Colts have won three in a row, limiting Houston, Kansas City and Jacksonville to a combined 20 points. Indianapolis was knocked out of the 2012 postseason with a first-round loss at Baltimore, and, quarterback Andrew Luck said, should be able to draw on that experience in these playoffs.
December 26, 2013 |
Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau is a big fan of the new rule that extended the NHL holiday break a day past Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and not only because it gave him more time to spend with his family. "There's three days off that you can stay No. 1," said Boudreau, whose team took a franchise-record nine-game winning streak and league-leading 27-7-5 record into the mini-vacation. "The way it's been going, it's gone back and forth among the five teams pretty well all year.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2013 |
The state's strategy of tapping $3.2 billion in federal money to begin construction of an ambitious bullet train project may be legally flawed and could put the state in financial jeopardy, key lawmakers say. After recent legal rulings that bar the use of state money for the project, legislators from both political parties say that even the use of federal funds is questionable and the entire project needs to be reassessed. U.S. Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Turlock), the chairman of the House rail subcommittee, and Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa)
December 10, 2013 |
Whatever form Irish novelist and playwright Sebastian Barry happens to be working in, you can be sure that he will be drunk with language. Words make him swoon. He loves the way they sound and slide off each other, the singsong rhythms they fall into under his wand, their echo in time. This devotion to verbal patterning is both his signal strength and conspicuous weakness as a dramatist. In "The Steward of Christendom," Barry's 1995 play now being revived at the Mark Taper Forum as a star vehicle for Brian Dennehy, retrospective prose substitutes for dramatic action.
November 29, 2013 |
The rivalry that splits Los Angeles like an earthquake fault has often been one-sided. UCLA and USC - or is it USC and UCLA? - have taken turns playing king of the Santa Monica Mountains. UCLA's 38-28 victory last season shook things up, and the Bruins can hope it signals a shift in the terrain - another eight-game winning streak? Or, from USC's vantage point, was it merely a bump along the landscape? The Trojans won five more consecutive games after a streak-stopping, 13-9 loss in 2006.
November 18, 2013 |
The air was a bit chilly when USC went through its usual light Monday practice. But the energized Trojans did not seem to mind, appearing and sounding as if they were still enjoying the warm afterglow of their upset victory over Stanford. Coming up next: a cold trip to Colorado, where No. 23 USC on Saturday will try to extend its winning streak to five games and keep the momentum going into the season finale against rival UCLA. The forecast for Boulder calls for possible snow Thursday, but partly cloudy skies and a low of about 26 degrees on Saturday night, according to the National Weather Service.