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Valentine Day

OPINION
February 14, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
As if the 405 Freeway hasn't broken our hearts and made us weep enough in the four years it's been under construction, it's now poised to make us miserable on Valentine's Day night and Presidents Day weekend. At 10 p.m. Friday, workers will start closing onramps and offramps, and by 1 a.m. Saturday, all lanes on the northbound 405 between Getty Center Drive and Ventura Boulevard will be shut down, making this no freeway of love for romantic revelers. Over the next 80 hours, three out of five lanes will be closed during the day and all five will be closed late at night.
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WORLD
February 14, 2014 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Just weeks before South African Olympian Oscar Pistorius is due to face trial on charges of murdering his girlfriend, he posted a Valentine's Day message on his website, calling the shooting a “devastating accident.” The killing of Reeva Steenkamp, which took place on Valentine's Day last year, and the subsequent charges against Pistorius shocked South Africans. A bail hearing attracted massive global media attention. "No words can adequately capture my feelings about the devastating accident that has caused such heartache for everyone who truly loved -- and continues to love Reeva,” said the athlete, who rarely makes public statements or appearances.
SCIENCE
February 14, 2014 | By Melissa Healy
Psssst! Do you want to get freaky, give voice to your wildest or most romantic sexual Valentine's Day fantasies, and at the same time, contribute to legitimate scientific research? There's an app for that. The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction, which has tracked and chronicled Americans' changing sexual habits and mores for more than 60 years, invites you download their free Kinsey Reporter app and dish on the erotic activities you have engaged in -- or wish you could engage in -- this Valentine's Day. Kinsey's mobile app, available from the Apple App Store and Google Play, allows scientists at Indiana University to collect anonymous data on sexual activity in the United States and around the world, and to make the organization's anonymous data and analyses available for public view.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 14, 2014 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
If you love movies, and you love romance, the DVD world has lots of new releases you can sample, depending on the kind of romantic you are. If you are a traditionalist, there is the "Keepsake Edition" of the BBC's 5 1/2-hour 1995 version of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice. " Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle are well-cast, and the set features an hour of new bonus features. If you like romance that's more off-center, Criterion has come up with a dual-format edition of Francois Truffaut's New Wave classic "Jules and Jim," starring Jeanne Moreau as a woman potent enough to intoxicate two men at the same time.
NEWS
February 14, 2014 | By Alexandra Le Tellier
Is romance dead? That's the question my colleague Chris Erskine posed in his Middle Ages column last week after noticing a decline in RomComs and love songs. “Imagine a life without romance. Well, that's exactly what we've come to in our pop culture - a joyless run of techno-pop, superhero flicks and this year's dour collection of best picture nominees,” he lamented . Erskine continued: “If you ever get the chance, watch TV sometime. Most of today's shows are raucous and smart, but not the least bit winsome or romantic.
NEWS
February 14, 2014 | By Amy Hubbard
Happy Valentine's Day! It's the perfect day to look at monogamy in the animal kingdom. But if your first thoughts are warm and cuddly, you can wipe away those Disney delusions. When it comes to monogamy among animals, there are few ladies and many tramps. Certain species have been held up historically as models of monogamy -- swans, gibbons, the wolf pack's alpha male and female. But scientific research over time has chipped away at those paragons of virtue. Animals cheat.  MORE: Here's what happens to a brain in love Birds, in particular, were thought to be sexually steadfast with their mates.
BUSINESS
February 14, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Google got into the Valentine's Day spirit Friday by creating a special doodle of love stories and with a fireplace visualizer for Chromecast users. When users headed to Google.com they will be greeted by six Sweethearts candies. Users can click on each one to listen to a love story and watch an animation. The stories include a guy who still has a crush on his wife, kids who talk about middle school relationships, and a man who discussed the sadness he felt when he realized his husband will one day die. The rest of the stories include a couple who recount the time they almost had their first kiss, a woman who had doubts about the man she's been married to for 42 years, and a high school senior who talks about her interactions with her crush.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 14, 2014 | By Samantha Schaefer
“You guys wanna go on the love train?” a Metro employee called out. As soon as Sam Oglesby stepped onto the Red Line car with roommate Jack Meighan, they introduced themselves to a nearby woman and began talking over the din - the roar of the train and the unusual chatter of nearly two dozen strangers. Two Metro cupids in red and white costumes, wings and all, made rounds with passengers who rode from Union Station to Hollywood and back on designated cars adorned with hearts, garland-wrapped poles and cupid window stickers.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 14, 2014 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
How is it possible that, until this week, I had never read Anita Loos' “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes”? Certainly, I've seen the Howard Hawks film. The book, however, managed to elude me -- until a new edition (W.W. Norton, $13.95) featuring a nuanced introduction by Jenny McPhee landed on my desk, just in time for Valentine's Day. If you're among the uninitiated, as I was, “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” is a perfect read for this most saccharine of holidays: a cynical knife blade of a novel, barely 130 pages, that puts the lie to romance.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 14, 2014 | By Patrick Kevin Day
If you watch local news, especially in the days before Valentine's Day, then chances are good you've heard this phrase: "Those with a special someone may look to their mobile device to help them say 'I love you.'" Sound familiar? If not, it definitely will after watching this segment from Thursday night's "Conan" in which Conan O'Brien once again pointed out the depressing sameness of local news around that country with prepackaged stories that various anchors read with varying degrees of inflection.
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