LA's new homelessness stats reveal a crisis that is only worsening

LA has the nation's worst homelessness problem, a (literal) epidemic so terrible it distorts the national statistics. Read the rest

Burbank! I'll be at Dark Delicacies today! (then San Diego, UCLA, LA Times Festival of Books)

Next week is my Southern California nonstop Radicalized and advocacy week: I'm starting with a signing at Burbank's Dark Delicacies on Sunday at 4PM, alongside Leslie S. Klinger & Lisa Morton, who are signing their new anthology Ghost Stories: Classic Tales of Horror & Suspense. Read the rest

Socal! I'll be in Burbank on April 7, San Diego on April 11 and UCLA on April 12

I've got a couple of hometown appearances coming up, including a rare west-side event: on Sunday, April 7 at 4PM, I'll be at Burbank's Dark Delicacies for a final signing in their old store before they occupy their new digs around the corner, and then I'm taking off my writer hat and putting on my activist hat to do two more events in the area. Read the rest

Why charter schools are the flashpoint for the LA teachers' strike

When teachers from the largest school district in America walked off the job this week, they were not campaigning for wages: rather, they were demanding smaller classes; more librarians, counselors, aides and special-ed teachers; and to rein in the Charter school movement, and that last demand is the key to understanding the whole thing. Read the rest

LA teachers' strike: Charter school teachers walk out, too

LA teachers have walked out, striking in torrential rains, protesting the billionaire-backed privatization movement that wants to hand public school funding to charter schools. Read the rest

In LA, the teachers of America's largest school district are on strike

LA teachers are on strike today, fighting against privatization, standardized tests, giant classes, and clawbacks of in-class teachers' aides. Read the rest

Jeff Goldblum's jazz album hit the no. 1 spot on the charts

Did you know... Jeff Goldblum plays jazz with the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra weekly at an L.A. club called Rockwell (road trip!)? And that, at the age of 66, he has released his debut album? Well, both of those are true. And, during the week of Thanksgiving, that new album of his -- The Capitol Studios Sessions -- got 10 Goldblums out of a possible 10 Goldblums on the Billboard Jazz Albums chart.

Rolling Stone:

His weekly gig... is hardly a vanity project — “If I’m not out of town doing something, I’m there every week” — but the 66-year-old actor has taken the idea to its logical, if odd, conclusion: his debut album that recreates the Rockwell vibe in a studio with a live audience.

Bolstered by guest vocalists Haley Reinhart, Imelda May and Sarah Silverman alongside trumpeter Till Bronner, Goldblum’s The Capitol Studios Sessions — which hit Number One on Billboard’s Jazz Albums chart — blends standards (Herbie Hancock’s “Cantaloupe Island,” Charles Mingus’ “Nostalgia in Times Square”) with the actor’s goofy, whimsical crowd banter. Imagine if Tom Waits’ Nighthawks at the Diner swapped a rumpled shirt and newsboy cap for a tuxedo with tails for a start.

Here's a taste:

(I ask you: Could he be any cooler?)

Rolling Stone's Jason Newman interviewed the silver fox about his 50-year musical journey and it's a great read.

(RED) Read the rest

LA County will switch to all open source vote-counting machines

California voting officials have certified an open source vote-counting package for use in the upcoming LA elections, in the first of a series of planned improvements to the County's voting system (other plans include improved absentee voting ballots). Read the rest

Greedy landlords create a mass-extinction event in Burbank's indie paradise

Burbank's Magnolia Park district was a big reason my family and I moved to town three years ago: a walkable, shady, tree-lined street whose merchants are a quirky (and legendary) mix of indie bookstores, prop outlets, vintage clothing stores, collectibles stores, year-round Halloween stores, hobby shops, quirky indie designers, gaming stores, wine bars, community credit unions -- like a goth/alternative Main Street, USA. Read the rest

Disgraced charter school exec pleads guilty to criminal money laundering, resigns from LA school board

Ref Rodriguez ran a big-money campaign to be the first representative of a charter school to be elected to LA's public school board; the money came from the deep-pocketed investors in charter schools, and was criminally laundered with Rodriguez's help and led to him being made president of LA's board of ed. Read the rest

Los Angeles: come see me talk with Jen Wang about her amazing graphic novel the Prince and the Dressmaker TONIGHT!

Hey, LA! Molly "Strong Female Protagonist" Ostertag, Tillie Walden and I are going to be talking with Jen Wang about her amazing, genderqueer middle-grades fairy-tale/graphic novel The Prince and the Dressmaker, tonight at 7PM at Chevalier's Books. Be there or be square! Read the rest

LA's soaring homelessness is distorting the national statistics

LA's homeless population is up 75% over the past six years; remove LA from the national statistics and the rate of American homelessness is actually in decline. Read the rest

Text to Save Lives - Crisis Text Line Needs YOU!

Twice in my life I tried seeking help when I was feeling suicidal: once from an in-person counselor, and once from a phone based hotline. Both services failed to provide the support I needed, and I left the experience feeling just as bad, if not worse. Thanks to mobile technology and one great idea, we now have another option — Crisis Text Line — and they need volunteers who can text, particularly late at night, since peak crisis hours are between 8pm and 4am. Read the rest

LAX: a new online tragicomedy is "a mash-up of Locke and Girls"

Paul Bennun writes, "The incomparable Sarah Warren, (creator of feminist slapstick spy caper MLE) has launched a brand new tragicomedy web series called LAX on YouTube, keeping with the TLAs. Read the rest

Watch this timelapse of illegal 4th of July fireworks over L.A.

View this post on Instagram

Happy Fourth of July Timelapse Tuesday! The best fireworks are in the hood. They are technically illegal, but that doesn't stop much of the city from getting down. This is a blend of a short video and an hour long timelapse made up of 800 photos on a Rokinon 50mm and Canon 6D. The music is from my super talented friend ARWon (check my profile for his SoundCloud). . . #westcoast_exposures #WeOwnTheNight_la #wheream_i_la #intheheartofthecity #igbest_shotz #igpodium_night #ig_color #ig_masterpiece #instashooterz #ig_exquisite #ig_shotz_le #allmediumsaccepted #ABC7Eyewitness #discoverla #dtla #global_hotshotz #jaw_dropping_shots #losangeles_city #losangeles_la #longexpoelite #losangeles #lastory #best_timelapse #conquer_la #nightphotography #night_shooterz #NBC4You #heatercentral #uglagrammers #in_losangeles

A post shared by Kevin Greene (@thekevingreene) on Jul 4, 2017 at 10:02am PDT

Photographer Kevin Greene created this amazing timelapse using photographs of illegal Fourth of July fireworks going off in Los Angeles. To get the series of shots, he traveled to Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook seven miles out of town.

Wondering why the city in the front doesn't have much action?

Kevin explains,"The foreground is Culver City. Culver City Police Department is super strict about fireworks. Those houses are relatively expensive and in Los Angeles the best street fireworks tend to be in the hood."

Check out all his cool night shots on his Instagram. Read the rest

Guillotine watch: LAX's new one-percenter luxury terminal -- UPDATED with veiled legal threats!, AND MORE LEGAL THREATS!

Update again: We've had yet another legal threat regarding this. The lawyers for the terminal want us to include the notice below or face litigatation. I think it was all implied by my update yesterday, but I have no objection to adding this text too (they sent it to us as a bitmap, so I can't paste the text, but I'm including a screenshot of the relevant section of the letter). They require that this notice be posted without "more content that is sarcastic and malicious.":

Update: the proprietors of this dubious enterprise want everyone to know that the REDACTED that shows the REDACTED captioned with REDACTED is not on general display. It is REDACTED.

Trieste Pinzini, writing on behalf of ID PR, sent me a note advising me that "This matter has now fallen into legal matter," which is technically a sentence, though I'm not sure what, exactly, it means.

Ms Pinzini wrote to me initially at an email address I don't use for Boing Boing correspondence and don't pay close attention to. Now I've got her second email, which notes, (hilariously) that "The erroneous story you ran produced 100+ disparaging comments, specifically about the non-existent video supposedly shown to customers of The Private Suite."

Yeah. Because the thing that really stood out about this thing was REDACTED.

Pay $7,500/year and $2,700/flight and you can use can use the new "private terminal" at LAX where you are waited on hand-and-foot, including a personal sit-down with the TSA guard who "searches" you before you're put in a BMW and driven across the tarmac to your flight -- best of all, REDACTED. Read the rest

L.A. Thanksgiving traffic almost beautiful from a distance

Do not drive anywhere in Los Angeles between the hours of 4 and 7 p.m and within 10 days either side of Thanksgiving. [via B911Weather]

Read the rest

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