CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 23, 2011 |
Creative-writing instructor Dick Wimmer's best lesson for would-be authors may have had more to do with persistence than prose. His first novel, the well-reviewed "Irish Wine," was published in 1989 after being turned down by publishers and agents 162 times over more than 25 years. He once laid claim to being history's most-rejected published novelist. At the time, his closest official competition was Steven Goldberg's "The Inevitability of Patriarchy," which sold after 69 rejections, the Guinness Book of World Records told The Times in 1989.
July 26, 2010
Another season, another press release from a pest-control association warning us that bedbugs are baaack in the United States! (We can’t think what they have to stand to gain by reminding us of this.) Bedbugs are more common than they used to be: Read this L.A. Times article about bedbugs from 2007, for example. That article quotes a fellow from the National Pest Management Assn., the same organization that just saw fit to alert the press today. And here’s another article we ran on the topic, last year—about bedbug-sniffing dogs , of all things.
June 6, 2010 |
If you're even slightly concerned about the privacy of your personal information, Jim Stickley is your worst nightmare. The chief technology officer of TraceSecurity, a risk management firm based in Louisiana, breaks into banks and steals their customers' most confidential information such as Social Security numbers and the details of their banking transactions. He could take your cash too, but says you probably have less money in your account than he could get by starting new credit in your name.
March 14, 2010 |
They're not as menacing as Burmese pythons proliferating in the Everglades, but giant African snails are targets of the government too. The invasive mollusks are considered a major plant pest and a potential public health threat because they can spread diseases, including meningitis. Now federal and state authorities are seeking to prevent the large, slimy, shell-toting snails from reestablishing themselves in Florida. Once established, agricultural officials said, the mollusks "can create a giant swath of destruction."
February 21, 2010 |
Bangkok's pigeons are little winged street toughs, nurtured on dust, dirt and noise. So, the local government, out of the goodness of its heart (or maybe after a look in its pocket), has decided they need a little "holiday" in the country. We're sending them to the forest, officials said recently, to live a life of luxury, clean air and food aplenty. "It's friendlier in the forest," said Teerachon Manomaiphibul, deputy governor of Bangkok, and pigeon relocator in chief.
January 20, 2010 |
More evidence emerged Tuesday to suggest that the voracious Asian carp is threatening to reach the Great Lakes, as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reported for the first time finding DNA samples of the carp beyond the locks in the Chicago area. The news came hours after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to intervene and issue an emergency order closing off all the locks that connect Illinois' rivers with Lake Michigan. "We have one sample positive in the Calumet Harbor above the breakwater, so that is in Lake Michigan," Maj. Gen. John Peabody said in a conference call with reporters.