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January 28, 2009 | Randee Dawn
Joyful, choreographed dance numbers staged in crumbling Mumbai train stations are not how most American films end. Yet when just such a scene crops up in "Slumdog Millionaire," the moment is perfectly apt. Sure, it's a Bollywood-meets-Hollywood ending, and the train station is key to the film. But those familiar with Oscar-nominated scriptwriter Simon Beaufoy's oeuvre may note that dancing-amid-decrepitude is almost a given.
July 1, 2012 | By Christopher Smith
Let's call these MVPs - Must Visit Piers. Here are my choices from south to north: Southern California - Coronado Ferry Landing, San Diego: Don't tell San Francisco, but this spot may have the most jaw-dropping city views in the state. Highlights include the snazzy skyline, whatever Navy craft are at berth and the Coronado Bay Bridge. But the real draw is the traffic (sailboats to freighters) in the channel. - Crystal Pier, San Diego County: Its trim cottages - built in 1936 and rehabbed over the years - line both sides of the pier.
January 15, 2012
Question: My husband and I are planning a walking holiday in Ireland along the Dingle Way. Are we permitted to bring our hiking poles as carry-on items along with our day packs on our flights, or must they be checked? If they are to be checked, any recommendations on how best to package them? Elizabeth Brown Thousand Oaks Answer: You'll find an amazingly long list of things you cannot take on a plane as carry-on at the Transportation Security Administration's website, (click on "Prohibited Items")
May 21, 2009 | Chris Lee
Oscar-winning writer-director Steven Soderbergh isn't coy about his motive for casting Sasha Grey in his low-budget indie drama "The Girlfriend Experience." In a movie entirely populated by nonprofessional actors, who better to portray a $2,000-an-hour Manhattan call-girl than one of the most prolific and in-demand adult film stars working the so-called San Pornando Valley? Still, he cops to a certain degree of exploitation.
June 3, 1986 | JAMES BATES, Times Staff Writer
Testing a product on the kind of people who eventually will use it is hardly a new idea. But at Protype, a Sun Valley company that makes an office machine that is a cross between an electronic typewriter and a word processor, testing is done with a twist. The company tries out its equipment on what Stephen Kurtin, Protype president, diplomatically calls the "most ordinary" secretaries. To find them, Kurtin every so often asks a temporary help agency to send over a group of bad secretaries.
June 30, 2012 | By David Karp, Special to the Los Angeles Times
HANFORD, Calif. - Combining the high sugar and flavor of cherries with the larger fruit size and extended season of plums has been a longstanding dream for fruit breeders, but such crosses are difficult to make successfully so that the hybrids yield abundant high-quality fruit. Zaiger's Genetics of Modesto, the inventors of Pluots and Apriums, managed the trick, and the fruit started showing up several years ago in very small quantities at upstate farmers markets; this year vendors at local farmers markets have begun offering plum-cherry hybrids, and the first commercial orchard has started bearing fruit.
December 3, 2010 | By Jessica Gelt
Over the last decade, Echo Park has morphed from a largely ethnic neighborhood populated by mom-and-pop shops and small restaurants serving simple Mexican and Central American fare to one of the hottest bar-hopping neighborhoods in town. With more than a dozen bars and restaurants within walking distance along Sunset Boulevard and more on the horizon, the neighborhood is changing into the "it" place to be at night. 1. Mohawk Bend Tentatively scheduled to open in mid-February, this 10,000-square-foot full-service bar and restaurant is being built in the nearly 100-year-old Ramona theater next door to the vegetarian hot spot Elf Cafe.
July 31, 2011 | By Catharine Hamm, Los Angeles Times Travel editor
Question: My girlfriend and I flew to Atlanta, where I had reserved and prepaid for a car at Avis' airport location. When I told the counter agent my girlfriend would be an additional driver, the agent told me it would cost an extra $13 a day to add her to the rental agreement. (She is well over 25 years old, like me.) When I asked what it was for, I got the "company policy" answer. Had she been my spouse or had this been a business trip and we both worked for the same company, there would have been no charge to add her to the agreement.
February 9, 2009 | Marnell Jameson
Ahhh . . . just thinking about a massage can be relaxing. For many people, the hands-on therapy is a simple cure for everyday ills, aches and stresses. It's become so popular, in fact, that we can have our kinks worked on or worked out, not just at posh resorts, but at the airport or grocery store too. And yet a lingering stigma dogs the profession, leaving some tense, aching Americans nonetheless reluctant to bare their body parts to strangers.
December 17, 2010 | By Margaret Wappler, Los Angeles Times
When most of us hear the word "pool," we think of old sharks in leather jackets, peeling off bills and throwing them onto the green felt, challenging us to a game where we can't save ourselves with the usual slop shot into the corner pocket. At Spot 5750, the spit-polished revamp of Hollywood Billiards, the pool tables ? with red felt, not green ? are open for accuracy-challenged shooters as well as "The Color of Money" types. With more staff, new carpeting, new paint, a new exterior and several other changes to the 25,000-square-foot space, co-owner Don Conner wanted to create a concept that was "hip, approachable and upscale.
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