Take Thee To The River

0501river.jpgSure, it may not be the most picturesque place on our map, but if “River? What river?” is your take on the 50 miles of waterway coursing from the San Fernando Valley to the ocean, then you’re almost as full of crap as it is ó and trust me the L.A. River is full of crap. That’s why for the past 16 years, the nonprofit Friends of the Los Angeles River (FOLAR) has been organizing its annual Great Los Angeles River Cleanup and the 16th edition takes place this Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at 13 sites from the Sepulveda Basin all the way to Long Beach (pictured is the Los Feliz/Atwater Village stretch).

Founded in 1986 to protect and restore the river’s natural and historic heritage, FOLAR has grown the yearly “La Gran Limpieza” into the largest urban river cleanup in the country, thanks to the participation of thousands of volunteers who give up a few hours to collectively haul out tons upon tons of the garbage that the rest of the city has thrown into it.

13 Replies to “Take Thee To The River”

  1. A river with an entirely concrete bed is the perfect metaphor for life in the big city.

  2. Actually, one of the miscoceptions about the L.A. river is that it’s bed is entirely concrete. I believe several miles of the river has a natural bed, and in fact developing these parts of the river is one of the things that FOLAR is about.

  3. You’re right Doran. In fact the stretch pictured in the post is natural river bed in part because the water table is so close to the surface in that area. The pressure the underground water exerts is too much for a concrete bed to sustain.

    It’s also my understanding that when Griffith donated the land to the city for what is now Griffith Park, he had envisioned the development of extensive riverfront parklands. Instead, a freeway runs through it.

  4. That’s great for the river, but what about the filthy, nasty-ass sky above? Or what about the filthy ocean that it drains into? You know, I’ve been to places where ocean water is blue. It’s quite a site to see.

  5. That’s funny that you edited my comments. The truth hit a little to close to home for ya boner?

    Will Campbell responds:
    Indeed, while momentarily toying with the idea of deleting your first comment I momentarily “edited” it to include: “One more thing: I’m a fucking idiot” at the end.

    But then I realized that all that additional information did was redundantly belabor the fact and thus I removed it, leaving your tactless lameness intact and as it was originally posted.

  6. Sorry, boner, I thought you removed it. Anyway, Bill, for you to deny the air is nasty and the ocean is nasty as well is completely ignorant, but thanks for trying to edit my posts and add things in there that I didnít say. Donít you know what happens when you dump your quart of motor oil down the sewer? Goes right to the ocean, pal. Same with dog shit and everything else that gets put in there. How can you be retarded and in denial? Itís beyond me.

  7. Sally, I am unclear why you’re ragging on Will (with W) and his attempt to make the river a bit cleaner – because eventually that stuff in the river does end up in the ocean. We can sit around and spraypaint signs on storm drains, but fact is that folks are gonna put stuff in them and someone’s gotta get it out of there. Are you up for making this a better place or are you one of those who belittles themselves by believing that they can’t make at least one small stretch of river cleaner?

    I’ve been to places where the ocean is blue – and they’re right here in Los Angeles county – just because our sand is not white and our water is not shallow like the tropics does not make our water filthy (granted, it is near the creeks and streams). Clear water is not a demonstration of its purity – the polar oceans are notoriously clouded but that’s because they’re teeming with life.

    Small steps is all most folks can handle. Will is a proponent of biking to work (and for pleasure) instead of driving as well as improving the MTA system.

    If he replied to you in an email…we’re unaware of the contents of it, so bringing it to the comments section of this post is what confuses us. But from your quoting of him, he says he was TEMPTED to edit your comments … but did he?

    I love your 2nd grade use of butchering folks names – it makes you look so smart, I hope you come up with something clever with mine!

  8. Cowbell,
    Is that a clever enough 2nd grade attempt at mocking your name? Whatever, I donít care anyway. Will, or Bill as I call him, can clean up the river all he likes and thatís fine by me. I was just pointing out that the filthy river drains into the filthy ocean. So clouded murky is a sign of life, eh? I suppose the same holds true for air? So that big streak of yellow/brown across the sky is healthy? Interesting and good to know.

  9. Cybele, thank you for the assist, though I’m afraid I may have muddied things up a bit. Let me see if I can clear things.

    I never replied to “Sally” (who I’ve learned actually prefers to be called “Chode” by the voices in “her” head) via email because as much as I wanted to believe that “[email protected]” or “[email protected]” are “Chode’s” legit addresses, a quick referencing of the Tard Wikipedia showed them to be addresses that trogs of such ilk frequently resort to using when they’re feeling especially vulnerable and not-so-fresh.

    So what I did do was go into “Chode’s” second comment remarking about the edit and ASSuming that Sean had done it and edit in the “Will Campbell responds” addendum that can be read above.

    “Chode” did not quote me directly or correctly. To do so would require a capacity for intelligence, coherence, comprehension, and the ability to dress one’s self, none of which “Chode” posesses.

    Further evidence of “Chode” lacking these characteristics and proof that “Chode” lives in a strange and twisted little world from which “Chode” doesn’t get out much can be found in the warping of my simple and straightforward post about pitching in to clean up the L.A. river into somehow being about me being in oblivious and retarded denial that the air sucks and that the ocean sucks.

    Well played, indeed.

  10. Patt Morison (Pulitzer winning Los Angeles Times columnist and occasional host of Airtalk on KPCC) wrote a wonderful book all about the Los Angeles River called Rio L. A.: Tales from the Los Angeles River.

    From one of the Amazon reviews:”This book is done in a table top format and should be within reach at all times- at least for all Angelinos and natural flowing river advocates. It is not a scholarly treatment and not meant to be, rather, it is an anecdotal effort to bring awareness of the *existence* of the river and bring people up to speed via a quick overview of the history and current affairs of the river. This is accomplished with good text and photos by Patt Morrison (Los Angeles Times columnist, extraordinaire) and Mark Lamonica (a great photographer).”

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