Saturday, December 20, 2008

From ArtB's Bill (L.A. arts mailing list): anyone knows how to save a gallery in Downtown?

hello friends.

a friend of mine who runs a gallery in downtown Los Angeles
is possibly facing closure due to low art sales from the recent
economy.

if you can be of help in directing them towards grants, loans, etc.,
please let me know.


the gallery is their dream.

they have put a few years
of hard work into the gallery,
and it would be nice to keep
it around.

thank you.
bill farroux (mahnase@googlemail.com)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Bill's dog ran away in Downtown! Anybody seen this guy?

His Name Is Mulholland
He Is A Much Loved Family Dog
Male Black/Grey Tibetan Terrier 20 - 25 lbs 6 Years Old
Was Wearing A Brown Collar Lost At Spring Street and 8th Street In Downtown Los Angeles
Between Thurday Dec 11 and Sunday December 14th 2008
He Is Very Loved & Special To Me
Please Call 323.872.4622
With Any Info
REWARD

Feministing.com event downtown tonight

Contact: Sarah Richardson, 650-269-1150, Richardson@stanford.edu

From http://www.feministing.com/:

Reminder - Los Angeles Feministing Reader Holiday Happy Hour at the cozy Redwood Bar tonight, 7-10 pm. Drop in and take a break from holiday stresses!


All are welcome - come party, network, and celebrate the holidays with Feministing readers from LA!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Boot jai goh" (little bowl cake) (Hill & Alpine, Chinatown)

Oh my fucking god. My temp work is near this "boot jai goh" (little bowl cake). Totally last century old colonial Hong Kong nostalgia in Chinatown! Awesome!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Do you really see cabs in Downtown? I only see the signs

So weird. I see the said signs everywhere but I seldom see a cab except in front of the big hotels. It'd be nice if I can get one from home in Gallery Row to Bunker Hill so I don't get tiny water pots all over my feet in high heels these days when going for interviews. Interviews don't always validate parking these days. Park in Macy's, get validated and walk? Might as well walk all the way. Damn, my feet hurt!

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/los_angeles_metro/la-me-taxi9-2008dec09,0,5702971.story?track=rss
From the Los Angeles Times

L.A. taxi service reinforces that this is not New York

Despite efforts to get more passengers to hail cabs in downtown and Hollywood and bring a piece of urban New York to L.A., city officials and taxi drivers are finding the service slow to catch on.
By Cara Mia DiMassa

December 9, 2008

The line at the taxi stand outside the Biltmore Hotel was six cabs deep Monday morning, even though there was space for only two cars. Sam Onumonu's car was the third one in line.

The stand, said Onumonu as he leaned forward in his seat, was packed for one simple reason: It's one of the easiest places for a driver to get a fare in downtown.

"There aren't too many people flagging us down," he said. "It happens only when there are people with young kids, or something going down. You're better off staying at the cab stand."

Five months ago, the city rescinded regulations that made it illegal for cabbies to pick up passengers in bus zones and red zones or along busy streets when no-parking regulations are in place. The change allowed cabbies in downtown and Hollywood to pick up fares without fear of getting ticketed -- even in no-stopping zones.

The idea was to bring a piece of New York urban life to Los Angeles' revitalizing urban core. But like so many things about New York, it turns out folks in L.A. didn't like it.

Officials said they are having a hard time persuading people to use the service -- and persuading drivers to leave the safe confine that is the hotel taxi stand.

Through the boosters' eyes, downtown is both a residential neighborhood and a destination for both tourists and suburbanites, who might be lured to come to the area for cultural events or the sports-entertainment zone located around Staples Center. And in an area with limited mass transit options, they think hailing a cab from one location to another should be a quick way to get around. Like they do it in Manhattan.

So on Monday, officials decided to re-launch the taxi program -- this time, with a news conference, free lunch for cabbies and even a few L.A. Kings Ice Girls.

Standing in the middle of the newly inaugurated L.A. Live plaza, Carol Schatz, president of the downtown business improvement district, looked out at a dozen taxi drivers who had been corralled for a photo op as part of the relaunch.

"You all are going to promise me -- you are going to cruise," she said, elongating the last word into three syllables. "Cruising is good!"

The civic aspirations of leaders who spoke Monday seemed to follow a traditional line: New York, Paris, London: in all of these cities, it is easy to hail a cab. So why shouldn't it be in L.A.?

L.A. Live managing director Lisa Herzlich said that being able to hail a taxi "will be even more important than ever before, as downtown becomes a major tourist destination."

After the news conference, a steady stream of cabs pulled up along the curb across the street from Staples Center, and Councilwomen Jan Perry and Wendy Greuel and others handed out free boxed lunches -- sandwiches, chips, potato salad and an apple -- to their drivers.

"Do you like turkey?" Greuel asked one driver.

"We have vegetarian!" Perry sang cheerily. "It's not all about the meat!"

In addition to plying drivers with a free lunch, officials are trying to alert potential customers to the rules with a series of signs posted along downtown thoroughfares.

More than 600 of the signs -- with a graphic of a figure hailing a cab and instructions on how to hail a cab -- were installed in the last week as a reminder to pedestrians that they can hail a taxi "anytime, anywhere downtown (except bus zones)."

Downtown resident Rebecca Morley said she had noticed that she never saw cabs cruising the area but didn't realize that there was any issue until she saw the signs posted around her neighborhood.

"I just thought cabbies were lazy," she said.

Morley, who does not own a car, said she liked the idea of being able to hail a cab.

But she said she worried that if she were using one to go, say, to a bar in the Industrial District, she wouldn't know how to get home -- because cab drivers are mostly being encouraged to cruise downtown's major streets.

But cabbies are skeptical about the hailing approach. They would always prefer a long fare rather than a short one.

And many believe the long trips -- to LAX, the Westside, the Valley -- can be found at hotels, not from the couple waving from outside that trendy eatery.

Back at the taxi stand, driver Joseph Sohn said that he had noticed the signs posted around downtown and said he felt as if the push "was going in a positive direction."

"I think a lot of people are afraid," he said. "It would be nice if people knew how to hail a taxi."

DiMassa is a Times staff writer.

cara.dimassa@latimes.com