The other day the entire world collectively pointed and laughed at the obvious publicity stunt unleashed by JetBlue, where they announced plans to offer $4 fares from Burbank to Long Beach to avoid carmageddon. But flying seems pretty fast right? I mean, you are in a plane and all. But how fast is it really? Fast enough to beat Wolfpack A? Seriously, easily the most elite street cyclists in LA, possibly in the country started doing the math and think they can make that trip faster on bike than JetBlue can in a plane. You know what? I think they are right. I’ve seen the hustle in action. I’ve seen Wolfpack A win race after race. I think this is totally legit. Several folks are already trying to get JetBlue to accept the challenge. Let’s see what happens!
UPDATE: IT’S ON! Details being finalized right this very second, but this is happening. Point to point. It’s a battle of commuters. A house in Burbank to the Long Beach Aquarium. More details soon!!!
I have no problem at all admitting that Fucked Up is one the few bands that have surfaced in the last few years that have really caught my attention. Beyond that, they’ve got a strangle hold on it. Seriously, just watch the video above for “Queen of Hearts” from their newest album and just try to tell me there isn’t something seriously awesome going on. When was the last time you saw a music video with actual actors?
I’ve been pretty obsessed by these guys for quite some time and after I saw them play a while back all of my suspicions of their greatness were confirmed 10x. And now they are coming back, and I have a pair of tickets to give away. They are playing at The El Rey on July 26th with Trash Talk and FIDLAR. If I were you I’d just say screw this risk and go buy tickets right away. But if you are feeling gambley and want to try and convince me why I should give you these tickets free then do it in the comments below. Sometime in the next day or two or three I’ll scream “THAT’S IT!” and people around me will think I’m nuts, but what it will mean is no more comments and then I’ll pick whoever makes the best case. Or makes me laugh. Go for it.
photo by Daniel Boud
If I told you that someone driving a car ran into a stationary object, would you think the fault rested with the driver or with the stationary object? What if that object was a person? Now whose fault is it? What if that person was actually several people. A large group in fact? And what if I told you the driver had been drinking? Still with me? And what if I told you the driver made no attempt to stop, left no skid marks, and by some eyewitness accounts may have even sped up? Any idea who might be at blame here? And what if this collision sent many of those people to the hospital, some in critical condition, many with broken bones?
So just to clarify. If a driver, who had been drinking ran into a large group of people who were standing still (that is, they didn’t jump in front of the car or anything stupid like that) without making any efforts to avoid them – who do you think is at fault?
If you said the driver, congrats, you have some shred of common sense. If you said it must have been the fault of the people the driver hit, you must work for the LAPD.
This is disgusting.
As someone who rides bikes in Los Angeles, who is obsessed with subcultures, and who walks the line on cool kid wannabeness, it’s no surprise that Takeover LA is one of my daily reads. If you aren’t into bikes then it’s likely of no interest to you, but if you are this is a rabbit hole that runs very, very deep. TOLA (as it’s more commonly known) is an LA blog in that the authors live in LA, the post about LA events, post videos of LA stuff and LA is in the title of the site, though I’d argue it’s focus is really more about the fixed gear / track bike scene. They write about stuff they are into, and since they are in LA a lot of that stuff happens to be in LA as well. There is also no question these are the cool kids, which, not being one of the cool kids, is cool to be able to live vicariously through this blog. It’s a fun guilty pleasure at worst.
On the good side they posts all the time. Really several posts a day on any given day. These are pretty well balanced between videos, photos, events, reviews and profiles. I can’t say I’m totally down with some of the fashion they endorse but I’m old so that’s to be expected I think. If you wanted a good idea what is cool in the fixed gear scene right this very second, you could read TOLA for one day, and no other site, and have a very good idea. They are seriously all over this, and I really appreciate passion in a blog. There’s no question they are into the stuff they are writing about.
On the bad side, I’d challenge you to find a single review on the site that says anything negative about the product they are reviewing. I’d also challenge you to find a review that doesn’t causally mention that the product they are reviewing was given to them free. I’d also challenge you to find a review that didn’t say that said free products were awesome. Ethically, this is a little suspect. I don’t really trust their reviews because of this, are they giving this product a good review because they like it or because they got it free? It’s hard to tell. I wish they talked more about stuff they thought was lame or not awesome, or stuff they just bought for themselves because they wanted rather than only stuff given to them for free. That would add a ton of credibility in my book, but again, I’m old. So take that how ever you will.
Well, you knew this was coming.
LAist is one of the oldest group blogs in LA, and probably the one we at blogging.la have been most often compared to. (even though many of those comparisons were made by the staff of LAist) The site has at one time or another been steered (to some extent) by bloggers I have a lot of respect for. I’ve always liked Jason Toney, I’ve said plenty of times that I think Tony Pierce was at one time the best blogger in all of Los Angeles, and Zach Behrens undoubtably raised the bar there when he was handed the keys. Anyone who knows the history of blogs in LA knows those three names very, very well. And rightfully so.
I don’t know how many seconds it was after the Blogging (in) LA series was proposed that I was told by everyone that LAist was “all me” but I suspect I could count it on one hand. *Maybe* two.
That should really be no surprise given our history – personally, between blogging.la and LAist and between parent companies Metblogs and Gothamist. If you are new to all the drama lets just say it’s been a long and sordid history, whose sordidness is only exceeded by it’s drama. And since I no longer speak for Metblogs I feel OK voicing my own opinion without having anyone go ballistic claiming whatever random business, political, whatever bullshit seemed suited at the time. So I’ll get it out of the way quickly, I’m not a fan of LAist. Continue reading “Blogging (in) LA: LAist”
I love seeing Cache’s work around LA. This is a fantastic little mini-doc with some of the thought behind his art.
I love the Militant Angeleno.
I could end this review right there and be completely confident that I’d expressed my feelings about this specific blogger and his/her site accurately. The Militant Angeleno is really one of the greatest blogs in the city, and LA is a better place because it exists. I’m not saying that to win points, I actually don’t even know if the Militant knows I exist. I don’t care. I wake up happy knowing the Militant exists.
If you aren’t already familiar with the Militant I feel sorry for you. I’ve called LA home for over 10 years now. In fact, as I’ve said on numerous occasions it’s the only place I’ve ever lived that really felt like home. I take a lot of shit for that because it’s cool to hate LA. Especially if you are someone who has never been to LA, or someone who lives in SF. Because of the Militant Angeleno I feel justified telling people hating on LA to die in a fire. LA has a lot to offer, way more than most people notice at first glance. Or second glance. Or even third glance. The Militant is there on the front lines helping people to see more of what LA is all about. It’s not one neighborhood. It’s not one style. It’s not one identity. And that’s what makes it so amazing. The Militant Angeleno is my hero because he/she is out there banging that dumb every day and there is no question countless people in LA know more about their own city because of his/her efforts. This is turning into a gushing fanboy post but it’s 100% honest and heartfelt.
If I had to scrape to find a complaint, and that’s really hard to do, it’s that the blog isn’t updated as often as it once was. Used to be you would get several posts a week. Now a few posts a month is lucky. But I’m guilty of the same thing and know how life gets in the way sometimes. If you don’t already make a habit of reading the Militant you should start. Because I said so. Also here’s an interview with the Militant from a few years ago that sheds a little more light. Go Dodgers!
Street Art is a pretty big topic in Los Angeles, and it’s been a hot topic right here on Blogging.la in the not too distant past. There’s no question that the epicenter of Los Angeles street art sites is 50mm Los Angeles. For the last 15 years some of the most talented folks in the LA scene have wasted countless hours on the message boards there. But sometimes you just want to see the art. And that is where Melrose & Fairfax has been killing it. Since the arrival of Known Gallery in the actual Melrose & Fairfax district, that area has become quite the hot spot in itself so a site named after that really need to deliver, and the dude(s?) behind M+F certainly deliver.
The site is like a firehose of pics, documenting every angle os street are in the city. Spray paint to wheat paste, posters to stickers, stencils to every damn thing else you can think of. If it’s happening on the streets in LA there’s likely a post about it there. While there is certainly news and discussion there, the site really excels at providing a constant visual stream – new pics all day every day. You can pop over there any time and see new stuff – sometimes new stuff by people you know, sometimes new stuff by new people making their first attempts on the streets. In a few minutes you can get a great idea of what’s new around town visually right this minute. Anytime I see new work that catches my eye that’s the first place I look for more info. Not to mention with so many other sites being text heavy, the commitment to photos here is a welcome distraction. And of course, you can find them on twitter as well (though sadly that’s just a feed of posts from the site).
[This post is part of our Blogging (in) LA series]
I just heard something horrible. Apparently Pure Luck has been sold and will be shutting down and reopening as a wine bar sometime in the next month. I just called to try and confirm this but there was no answer, but the tip off I got seemed pretty legit. This is terribly sad because Pure Luck has become legendary in the vegan restaurant world and I know more than a handful of people who make it their first stop when they visit LA, and it’s probably the restaurant I’ve eaten at more than any other in the entire city. The thing that bums me out is that it’s obviously a very popular place and while I understand as a business owner sometimes you just need to move on, I can’t believe that someone wouldn’t have wanted to take over the existing business. The following that place has is dedicated, and that won’t translate to a new establishment. Such a bummer if it’s true.
So, if you want potato pals or plantain tacos, you better get over there ASAP.
You might think that’s an easy question, but you’d be surprised. Yesterday I mentioned that local wel known graffiti artist REVOK was arrested and his bail has been set at $320,000 which to the untrained eye seems a tad on the high side. Well, turns out it’s a tad high to the trained eye as well. Artist Logan Hicks did some research and found out the bail that was set for arrests for some other crimes in Los Angeles over the last 2 months. Short version? They are all much lower than $320,000. For example…
Repeated molestation of a minor by husband/wife – Bail set at $150,000
Baby left in 115-degree car returned to mother – $100,000
Men accused of raping female student – $50,000
Machete-wielding man, 19, arrested near South Coast Plaza – $25,000
But somehow failing to repay damages for spray painting on a wall justifies $320K. Yeah. Nice even hand there.
This is a developing story, however it appears that one of the most well known Los Angeles artists, REVOK was arrested at LAX while he attempting to fly to Ireland. The artist, whose real name is Jason Williams was nabbed on an outstanding warrant for failure to pay damages in a previous case. REVOK’s usually very active twitter stream has been silent for days. Street Art News has the LASD press release which doesn’t sound good and hints at further charges, and confirms a $320,000 bail which seems excessive though I suspect the Sheriffs argued ‘flight risk’ since he was actually on the way out of the country when he was aprehended. I’m a huge fan of REVOK and love seeing his work around the city, but this sounds pretty bad for him.
This of course is on the heels of the MoCA Art In The Streets exhibition which has drawn serious battle lines between those who feel this is a collection of noteworthy and talented artists finally getting the attention they deserve and those who think it’s merely encouraging vandalism in the city. Some are even speculating that the LASD and LAPD have stepped up enforcement of graffiti related offenses in rection to the exhibition.
I’m totally geeking out over these few photos of the Cabazon Donosaurs being built. As you should know Claude K. Bell started building these things in the 60’s and for many years they were quite the tourist attraction along that strip of the 10, and then of course there was this – though I still attest that Tim Burton’s version how how they should have been lit is by far the greatest. As I mentioned when I blogged about these back in 2006, they are now owned and operated by creationists so if you visit you can learn a little bit about how medieval knights had to fight dinosaurs to protect their families and how God killed them all in a “world wide water disaster.” Which is honestly so goddamn amusing it’s worth it. What sucks is that so much got built up around them which completely kills the effect of giant dinosaurs roaming the desert.
Photographer Adam Rindy took some amazing portraits of people and their bikes at The Hammer Museum’s Third annual bike night last week. This is a fantastic collection showing the wide variety of Los Angeles cyclists, with many a familiar face to anyone who regularly finds themselves on 2 wheels.
Just yesterday I noted that our new header image was a famous mural off Fairfax. This photo is from earlier today when a truck from Graffiti Control Systems removed the locked gate from the private property where the mural is located and buffed it. The mural was completely legal and commissioned by the building owner, who can be seen in the photo as well obviously upset that artwork she had on a building she owned had been destroyed. LA Taco did some research and found that Graffiti Control Systems is based in North Hollywood (also on Facebook and yelp) and contracts with the city of LA to remove graffiti – though something is definitely out of the ordinary here unless they are in the habit of buffing anything they see regardless of where it is. You may recall a few years ago a very culturally significant mural of Ed Ruscha was painted over “on accident” and Saber’s Guiness Book of World Record holding LA River piece was wiped without notice.
While there is much ongoing (and forever ongoing) debate about the artistic value of graffiti, the city clearly need to do some work on educating it’s clean up crews on the difference between a tag on a garage door and a legal and commissioned mural. Especially since Los Angeles is so well known for it’s murals which a huge part of the life of it’s residents. Seeing artwork like this destroyed is disgusting. I hope Lynda, the owner of the building this mural used to be on, files a law suit against the city for trespassing and vandalism.
UPDATE: GCS has admitted this was an error and will be paying to have it fixed.