It's a billboard custom-tailored to grammar buffs. "Every day we help people get back to their everyday," proclaims the ad for Keck Medical Center of USC. In that single sentence, the copy writer does more to help people with grammar than I probably will in this whole column. But I'll give it a...
In 1963 I was the messenger boy for Arthur Sulzberger, the publisher of the New York Times. I bicycled throughout Manhattan running messages and packages, and prosecuting Sulzberger’s will. On any given day he would introduce me to the political elite of America. Regardless of whom I met, I...
It was a normal night in the 91011.The east La Cañada parking lots were full.
My head spun when I heard Democrats with their super-majority in the state Assembly slammed through a bill that would make California the only state in the nation to let immigrants, legal ones, sit on juries.
If it were possible to tally up all the moments of my life so far, the top activities would probably be watching "Simpsons" reruns, talking to computers over the telephone, and asking fellow diners, "Are you gonna eat that?"
If anyone worried James Ellroy might dumb down the salty language laced throughout his crime novels for an appearance at Glendale Community College this week, they wouldn't have been disappointed.
It had been some time since we'd visited the Target store near Vroman's in Pasadena, so after a casual dinner the other night here at Magpie's, my husband and I ventured across the Arroyo in hunt of some bargains. Some might not call that a date night, but coming home carrying treasures like my...
Last Friday I pulled a raid on Mrs. Pruden's second-grade class at La Cañada Elementary. I had intercepted intelligence that she was bringing chocolate cake to school. I was making a getaway when, for some reason, I fixated on a minivan parked in front of LCE adorned with stickers that read,...
Over at the Frontrunner at Santa Anita Park, we were all rooting for Goldencents. His jockey, Kevin Krigger, and trainer, Doug O'Neill, are local favorites.
The sparse front page of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 18 website expresses exactly the message Brian D'Arcy wants his members to get: Rotating photos of protesting workers waving "A DEAL IS A DEAL" signs.
Please don't let them be Muslim. Please don't let them be Hispanic. Please don't let them be Armenian.
Last Friday we posted on the Valley Sun website a little gift we picked up from our mothership, the Los Angeles Times. It was an item about actor Vince Vaughn having...
My mother was a cross between Genghis Khan and Morgan le Fay and all the hoodlums in the neighborhood feared her. But it was under her tutelage I learned that Providence often gives you what you need instead of what you want. It must have been a divine plan that caused the stork to drop me down...
“What do you look for in a jockey?”
If you are the parent of a current high school student, you will spend about $250,000 to raise that child to the age of 18, give or take a few thousand depending on family resources, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
On Tuesday evening, I had the chance to speak to a class at Glendale Community College run by the school's police chief, Gary Montecuollo. I have spoken to this class before, which focuses on law enforcement's interactions with the larger community, and enjoyed it each time.
Creators of a software program called Grammarly recently conducted a study of the grammar used in LinkedIn member profiles. They found that people with fewer grammar errors in their profiles ascended to higher positions, got more promotions and changed jobs more often.
In the midst of one of our nation’s hardest weeks, just after the Boston Marathon the La Cañada Unified School District presented an uplifting program titled “Cliques, Conflicts, Connections: Empowering your daughter to navigate her social and emotional worlds.”
During my recent trip to Prague, I reunited with Jeff Weller, a former student. Jeff was in my class 35 years ago. He’s an expatriate who owns a hotel near the Legion Bridge. His sons, Emil and Damek, study political philosophy at Charles University, founded in 1348.
An island nation you can't find on a map can threaten your retirement savings. Your health insurer could refuse to pay your medical bills by arguing you're covered only if someone drops a baby grand piano on your head, not an upright. On any given day, a celebrity might say mean things to a singer...
“If you come here at 6:30 every morning, after you leave, you will always have a good day.”
I was perusing one of my old journals dated 1964, trying to understand what went wrong. I was two weeks away from making Eagle Scout. But after participating in a gang fight on 237th Street, becoming an Eagle was out of the question.
It was the changing of the guard — Parcher Plaza at Glendale City Hall filled with people celebrating Mayor Frank Quintero with taquitos and cupcakes, a gathering of well-wishers that included Burbank Mayor Dave Golonski, who offered a framed memento in tribute.
It was a beautiful Friday morning at the Santa Anita racetrack.
I’m still at loss for words trying to express the essence of the La Cañada High School choral artists’ Cantemus tour through Central Europe. If you remember, when I last wrote, the choir had just finished singing in Bratislava, Slovakia.
Cartoonist Steve Greenberg gives his take on the departure of "The Tonight Show" from Burbank, its home since 1972. Jimmy Fallon will be taking the show to New York when he takes over hosting duties from Jay Leno in the spring of 2014.
These days, everyone's a writer. And a reporter. And an editor. Thanks to the Internet, you can report any "fact" you want, be it a UFO sighting in your rumpus room or incontrovertible evidence that Donald Trump has a full head of hair.
Italy’s toe is cold. Or, anyway, it was when I was there a couple of weeks ago. Surely the closest part of the mainland to North Africa ought to be more cozy than this. Even Naples, pictured always in the tourist literature with its blue bay and orange trees, was rain-drenched.
It's 8 a.m. in Austria. The MS Mozart, queen of the Danube, glides through the current, passing abbeys, cathedrals and villages from the 13th century. The snowflakes fall and nothing stirs from the quaint little houses with the steeple roofs. It is a serene morning in the Wachau Valley....
The seed catalogs arrived last month. The daffodils are blooming and there are tiny pomegranates on the pomegranate tree.
He was pretty good up there yesterday.
A reader named Roy sent me an e-mail recently. He had a question – not for himself but for a friend. And, heaven help me, I really believe it was for a friend. Here's what Roy wrote:
At last! There's a cure for my addiction to the K-drama series “My Love, Madame Butterfly”
Last week was challenging for a guy like me. It was the culmination of Fine Arts Week at La Cañada High. My wife, Kaitzer, detailed an operational plan that rivaled Napoleon’s when he invaded Russia. I was given a cumbersome list of picks-ups and drop-offs. Not only would I have to...
If you see a black Honda coupe with Rusnak paper plates on Foothill Boulevard, it's probably me. Rusnak is not in the business of selling Hondas, but when an affable elderly gentleman sideswiped my 1997 Toyota Avalon, we decided that it might be time to buy a new car.
Last January some of my La Cañada female friends wanted my opinion on Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's proposal to lift the ban on women in combat, particularly in the infantry, the most physically demanding branch of the military.
What would your town be like if its harshest critic had a seat at the table of power?
There's got to be something in the air.
One of my first impressions when I called the San Fernando Valley my home nearly 30 years ago was that this vast middle-class enclave suffered from a bad inferiority complex, like it was populated by a lot of Rodney Dangerfields who just couldn’t get respect.
Most of what you think you know about grammar is wrong.
The paradigm has at last shifted. Our town is now officially cross-cultural.
Almost two weeks have transpired since we lost a local teen to suicide. I wish I had written this sooner, but the words couldn’t come. I have struggled, hoping to write healing thoughts for his mother, family, La Cañada High, the senior class and the community, but nothing I can say can...
For about 15 hours this week, I’ve been sitting in Vrej Agajanian’s AABC TV studio, serially interviewing each of the candidates for Glendale’s City Council, School Board and City Clerk.
There's a cartoon about commas going around on the Internet.
The setting was beautiful: a hill high above the intersection of the Santa Monica (10) and Long Beach (710) freeways, with panoramic views of downtown L.A. and much of the San Gabriel Valley, even on this dark and misty Thursday night.
Whether we're moving from the grocery store to the dry cleaners, or walking our dogs, or taking turns at the gas pumps, the demeanor of La Cañadans going about routine chores this week mirrors that of students on the high school campus: We are subdued. We speak in voices far softer than...
Friday, March 1, was a sad day for our town. A teenager died on the campus of La Cañada High School.
What is it about that moment we call deja vu? Such moments capture a small measure of time but depict a significant occurrence in one's life, painting a vivid portrait of a past experience.
Not long ago I wrote a column about how sometimes in terms like “teachers' union” and “homeowners' policy” the apostrophe is optional. If you really mean that the first noun possesses the second, an apostrophe makes sense. But if the first noun is intended as more of an...
Michael Pollan is one of my heroes. I’ve quoted him in many of my columns and been helping him carry the flag for years touting the benefits of eating a whole foods diet. And the benefits are many; a streamlined torso, reduced inflammation, expedited recovery and more energy.