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People and Events

<i> From Staff and Wire Reports </i>

Even before the controversy over whether Mayor Tom Bradley knew that his city Housing Authority chairman wasn’t bothering to attend meetings, Alvin Greene was something of a mystery to the people at City Hall.

They weren’t even sure how to spell his last name.

The compilers of the City Hall phone directory listed him as “Green,” as did City Clerk Elias Martinez on his roster of commissioners. And when Councilman Zev Yaroslavsky wrote the mayor last week demanding that the chairman be removed for playing hooky for six months, he too spelled it “Green.”

Green/Greene could not be reached for comment.

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But the mystery was solved, once and for all, in his resignation letter. He signed his name, G-R-E-E-N-E.

Rodeo Drive’s Santa Claus will show up at the avenue today in a red-nosed Mercedes. And what kind of goodies will Beverly Hills’ version of the Jolly Old Elf have in his bag? “Perfume and cologne samples,” said a spokeswoman.

The police officer in charge of evening roll call at a station in South Los Angeles told the assembled cops how gunmen had threatened telephone crews in the area in one incident and shot up a truck in another.

After the incidents, police had decided to provide protection for phone workers in that area. And Chief Daryl F. Gates, in a subsequent conference call with police brass at several stations, wanted it made clear that the department cares about the crews.

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In fact, the officer told the uniformed troops, “The chief said to wave to your local phone man for the next few days.”

Collectors Bookstore, Oscar Peddler to the Stars, will put the Academy Award of the late producer Mike Todd on the block Jan. 1.

“The bidding will start at $40,000,” said spokesman Chris Harris, adding that Malcolm Willits, owner of the Hollywood store, had taken the statuette on consignment from Todd’s family. This will be Willits’ sixth Oscar sale. Todd’s award for best producer recognized his work on the film “Around the World in 80 Days,” which propelled Harris into press-agentese:

“This is the ultimate Oscar of all time because it’s the only Oscar that Mike Todd won, the only picture he produced and . . . he was married to Liz Taylor at the time!”

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But can it evade detection by the California Highway Patrol?

At a posh news conference Thursday, Brittingham Leasing Co. of West Los Angeles unveiled its Stutz Bearcat II, which is priced at $138,500 and nicknamed the “Stealth Car” because its body is make of the same carbon-fiber material as the Air Force’s plane--and perhaps because it costs almost as much.

Angelenos who couldn’t bring themselves to buy Christmas trees on 80-degree days finally got some inspiration in the form of dark, miserable, Dickensian weather Thursday. Snow even fell in some mountain and northern regions of the county.

But, judging from history, you probably shouldn’t count on the possibility of the Civic Center having a White Christmas.

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While some flakes fell on Malibu a year ago and a few were even sighted downtown by employees on the 26th floor of the Arco Plaza, the last measurable snow in downtown Los Angeles dropped on Jan 11, 1949.

About half an inch covered the Civic Center and the suburbs were pelted with even more.

The Rose Bowl, as one newsroom poet wrote, was transformed into “a dishpan full of milk.” An Alhambra hardware store put up a sign that said, “Snow Plows for Rent.” A Southern California-style snowman appeared in Eagle Rock, wearing a sombrero. And the city of Reno sent Los Angeles a snow shovel. Its whereabouts today are unknown.


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