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For seven years, Scott Stokes conducted his own reckless inquiries into the physiological effects of pot. "I woke up to get high, and I got high to go to bed," recalled the 19-year-old from El Toro, who broke his marijuana habit only after he was arrested two years ago for burglarizing a head shop. "If I didn't have it, I would . . . start sweating, and when I'd breathe deep I'd get into these weird breathing patterns. "People say that marijuana is not addictive, but it's extremely addictive."
April 11, 2014 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
In front of me, the movie screen starts at the floor and rises so high it's like seeing "Divergent" on the side of a building. At the moment warrior princess Tris, played by a fierce Shailene Woodley, is about to jump onto a speeding train. I can feel the train coming. Seriously, I can feel it. The subwoofers embedded in the cushy comfort of the theater's reclining chairs let the sound vibrate through my body. Tris' jump, just seconds before the platform she's running on ends over a dead drop, is stomach churning even on an ordinary screen.
January 3, 1989 | KIM MURPHY, Times Staff Writer
Rising 10 stories next to the Hollywood Freeway, the sleek, stucco-and-glass building looks more like a backdrop for television's "L.A. Law" than a prison designed to house some of the most notorious criminal suspects in Southern California. Kevin Mitnick, the 25-year-old computer genius accused of breaking into university and corporate computers from Los Angeles to Leeds, England, now calls it home.
April 7, 2014 | By Matt Pearce
As if New Yorkers needed another reason to pinch their noses at New Jersey. A wildfire in New Jersey's Wharton State Forest sent a cloud of smoke rolling over New York City on Monday morning, putting the sunrise into a haze and causing many residents to worry there was a fire in their neighborhoods. The pungent smell of burning grass and brush is familiar to Angelenos during fire season, but it's a little more unusual for New Yorkers, who found themselves under an air quality alert until at least until Monday evening.
May 31, 1996
Shakespeare on cigarette smoking: "And all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death" (MacBeth, Act V, Scene V). JERRY HAMBLETON Laguna Beach
December 16, 1992
--There are about 50 million smokers in the United States, according to the U.S. surgeon general, and 38 million of them want to quit. But in 1992 there were still 510 billion cigarettes sold, and retail sales totaled $41.5 billion in the United States. Marlboro remains the top brand Market share for U.S.
May 10, 2012
Re "Call tobacco tax a user fee," Column, May 7 I'm a nonsmoker who is generally in favor of anything that will reduce smoking and stick it to Big Tobacco, but I wonder if we are getting close to the point at which people who smoke - 12% of adults and 14% of high schoolers - can't or won't give it up no matter the price. Will we just be making life more miserable for the addicted while having little effect on the tobacco companies? After all, if their profits dip, they can just raise the price.
May 4, 2010 | By Patrick McGreevy, Los Angeles Times
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Monday vetoed a measure that would have banned smoking at state parks and beaches, calling it "an improper intrusion of government into people's lives." Schwarzenegger, whose cigar habit led him to build a smoking tent at the state Capitol, said in his veto message that the proposed regulation, which would have been the most far-reaching tobacco legislation in the nation, went too far. Such rules should be left up to cities, counties and local park officials, the governor said.
February 8, 2010
Is having a bad habit ever a good thing? It kind of can be if your aim is to lower your blood pressure, since one way to do that is to reduce your alcohol consumption significantly. It's a winning strategy -- but only, of course, if you were drinking a lot in the first place. Many studies have documented the link between alcohol and blood pressure. A 2001 review of 15 alcohol-reduction trials with 2,234 participants concluded that cutting back on alcohol led to reductions in systolic and diastolic blood pressures.
July 9, 2009 | Jaime O'Neill, Jaime O'Neill is a writer in Northern California.
"I constantly struggle with it [smoking]. Have I fallen off the wagon sometimes? Yes." -- President Obama, June 23, 2009 -- I started smoking when I was 16, pilfering cigarettes from my mother's purse or swiping unfiltered Pall Malls whenever my dad left his opened pack untended. Then I got a job that summer and began buying my own -- Newports with menthol and filters, a brand preferred by all the young tobacco initiates I had begun to share my habit with.
April 4, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Nest this week halted sales of the Nest Protect, its smart smoke detector, after an issue was found within the product that could cause it to delay ringing an alarm if there were a fire. The company, which was acquired earlier this year by Google for more than $3 billion, also encouraged users who own the device to disable a feature called Nest Wave, which is the source of the problem. The feature allows users to turn off the Nest Protect with a wave of their hand, but under certain circumstances, the feature could cause the device to not function properly.
March 31, 2014 | By Mary MacVean
If legislation banning smoking protects people from disease, then the proportion of the world population covered by such laws is too low - just 16%, according to researchers. “Smoke-free legislation is associated with substantial reductions in preterm births” and hospital visits for asthma, the researchers wrote in the Lancet last week. That conclusion, combined with the benefits of such laws to adults, is strong support for the recommendation of the World Health Organization to create smoke-free environments, wrote the researchers from the Maastricht University School for Public Health, Hasselt University and the University of Leuven, both in Belgium, and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
March 8, 2014 | By Tony Perry
SAN DIEGO - Wind-driven smoke from a fire deep in the Cleveland National Forest forced closure of Interstate 8 for nearly two hours in eastern San Diego County, officials said Saturday. The fire east of Pine Valley erupted at approximately noon and by 5 p.m. had covered more than 100 acres. No homes were immediately threatened. The blaze was fought by air tankers and ground units, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said. ALSO: Earthquake: 3.0 quake strikes near Eureka Medal of Honor recipient to be buried today Crash survivor killed in hit-and-run as he crosses freeway, police say Twitter: @LATsandiego
March 6, 2014 | By Ari Bloomekatz
Officials in Sonora have not disclosed how they plan to discipline three third-graders who were caught smoking marijuana inside a school bathroom. Leigh Shampain, joint superintendent of Sonora and Sommerville elementary schools, told The Union Democrat officials do not discuss specifics of disciplinary cases and that this is the first time anything like this has come across his desk since he began the job. Two of the third-graders at at Sonora Elementary School were 8 years old, the other 9, authorities said.
March 5, 2014 | By David Zahniser and Marisa Gerber
Frustrated by the lack of federal data on electronic cigarettes, the debate among Los Angeles City Council members Tuesday over whether to restrict their use quickly turned personal. Members of the council -- which ultimately voted to treat e-cigarettes just the same as regular cigarettes, banning their use in parks, restaurants and most workplaces -- recounted their own experiences and struggles with smoking, adding to a passionate debate at the hearing. Councilman Mitch O'Farrell, who pushed for the new restrictions, recalled his days breathing secondhand smoke as a waiter in a downtown restaurant.
March 5, 2014 | By Adolfo Flores
Probation officials are investigating how a group of third-graders caught smoking marijuana inside a school bathroom got their hands on the drug. KPIX-TV reported  three third-graders were found by another student Feb. 27 smoking weed inside a Sonora Elementary School bathroom. Sonora Police Chief Mark Stinson told the station they were two 8-year-olds and a 9-year-old. The student told school officials, who reported the incident to police. The students were released to their parents, but investigators are trying to determine whether someone supplied the drug to the kids.
March 5, 2014 | Steve Lopez
I'm guessing that if you call 911 to report a fire in Los Angeles, you probably wouldn't want me showing up with a hose and a helmet. But just in case I had an untapped aptitude for putting out blazes, I decided to try my hand at the sample test questions posted for would-be firefighters on a city website. The LAFD could always use a few more good men and women, after all. The rank and file may be top notch, but in the upper echelons, it's been one white-hot controversy after another regarding the 911 system and misleading claims about response times.
March 5, 2014 | By Christine Mai-Duc
Long Beach has approved strict rules on the use of electronic cigarettes in public spaces, tougher even than the regulations just adopted by the Los Angeles City Council. The restrictions, adopted on a 9-0 vote late Tuesday, mean that Los Angeles County's two largest cities will treat e-cigarettes in much the same way as regular cigarettes, banning their use in restaurants, bars, workplaces, city parks and beaches. In Long Beach, e-cigarettes will be classified as tobacco products, banning their sale to those younger than 18 and subjecting vendors to inspections and potential sting operations by the city's Health Department.
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