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ENTERTAINMENT
July 2, 2010 | By Michael Ordoña
It can't help but disappoint that there's not more on the actual nature of existence in "The Nature of Existence." But taking on the Big Questions in a 94-minute documentary is bananas, as the filmmakers winkingly acknowledge with the tag line: "Every mystery of human existence … explained in one movie!" As a conversation starter, though, it's an affable appetizer. The film is really mostly about the foibles of religion, but gently so. It benefits from director Roger Nygard's ("Trekkies")
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HOME & GARDEN
September 3, 2011 | By Barbara Thornburg, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Here in the capital of outdoor living, there is the front yard. And there is the backyard. But an up yard? For interior designer Velvet Hammerschmidt and her husband, software executive Mark Friedman, that was the solution. They loved their modern loft digs in Santa Monica's Commercial Broadway District. Within minutes, they could stroll to their favorite restaurant, browse the boutiques on the Third Street Promenade, watch a mime, stop for a cappuccino. But the desire for a such a metropolitan life also came with a natural longing for, well, nature.
OPINION
October 23, 2005
Re "Battles change, wars don't," Opinion, Oct. 20 Victor Davis Hanson argues that the fundamental character of war has remained constant from the time of the ancient Greeks to the present "because the nature of humans who fight it is constant over the centuries." He acknowledges that technology has changed from flint arrows to guided missiles but then states that "the essence of war remains the same." He presents multiple examples of torture, executions, biological warfare, the slaughter of civilians and personal and political affronts to support his argument that, since human nature is constant, wars don't change.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 4, 1997 | STEPHANIE STASSEL, Times Staff Writer
His childhood in Brooklyn-where, Ralph Steckler says, "there was no nature"-planted the seed for his adult fascination with the outdoors. Whether he's face to face with a great horned owl or patiently waiting for the perfect shot of a darting skipper butterfly, Steckler is constantly seeking out the natural beauty in and around the Valley. And there's nothing like seeing it up close. "I'm always looking. It's a way of discovering the world," he said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 31, 2000 | K.C. COLE
Sometimes, you can't not take it with you. I was reminded of this recently during a week stalking wildflowers and crunching through glaciers in the wilderness of the Canadian Rockies. A friend stopped to marvel at the miniature tableau created by the chance alignment of twig, brook, flower, mushroom, moss. I stopped to marvel at the way gravity had bent a sapling backward into a parabola. "Just what you would notice," she said, rolling her eyes.
HEALTH
April 2, 2001 | JUDY FOREMAN
A number of pharmaceuticals based on plants, insects, marine organisms, soil bacteria and other natural products are now under development. * Researchers from Abbott Laboratories are conducting trials of a painkiller called ABT-594, which the company says is about 50 times better than morphine in relieving chronic and acute pain yet is not addictive.
TRAVEL
April 24, 2011
Is it a zoo or a museum? Yes to both. The San Diego Zoo and its Safari Park long ago shattered the mold for the cat-in-a-cage attraction. Now other visionary organizations are pushing the limits, putting nature on display more naturally, then adding a pinch of Smithsonian. If you're traveling the West this spring or summer, treat yourself and the kids to a genuine close encounter of the critter kind — educational benefits no extra charge. -- Ken Van Vechten Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road, Tucson; (520)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 27, 2012 | By Valerie J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
After children's author Jean Craighead George revealed that she wanted to write a book about a girl who talks with wolves, legendary book editor Ursula Nordstrom reportedly asked one question - will it be accurate? - and most certainly knew the answer. Raised as a naturalist, George grounded her fiction in her true-life wilderness adventures, publishing more than 100 books over 60 years. One of her best-known novels was the Newbery Medal-winning "Julie of the Wolves," a 1972 book inspired by a trip George took to Alaska to study wolves at the Naval Arctic Research Laboratory.
NEWS
April 13, 2004
Fresh out of college more than 10 years ago, I volunteered for the National Park Service "family" ("Family Crisis," April 6) in Yosemite Valley. Even then I saw my fellow employees' frustration. My idealistic love of nature wasn't enough to lead me to seek permanent employment. Living on a hand-to-mouth salary and with your neck on the chopping block wasn't for me. It begs the question, "Where are our priorities?" Eric Wetherbee Santa Paula
SCIENCE
January 11, 2003 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A natural chemical that scrubs pollution from the sky is more abundant than previously believed, leading scientists to wonder if they have been underestimating the atmosphere's ability to cleanse itself. A new study by European scientists published in the current issue of Nature shows levels of hydroxyl are probably steady or even on the rise. Hydroxyl chemically reacts with a range of polluting gases, including methane and carbon monoxide, and removes them from the atmosphere.
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