No one’s comparing it to the Lithuania...

No one’s comparing it to the Lithuania situation, of course, but is the city of L.A. prepared to twist the screws a bit on secession-minded Venice?

Larry Sullivan of the Venice Cityhood Committee said his group was warned by an L.A. Recreation and Parks official that if Venice breaks away, L.A. would demand payment of a sewer bill that dates back to 1925. The tab, $5,000 (not including interest), was forgiven when Venice became part of L.A. soon afterward.

Sullivan says that the debt arose after Venice’s city treasurer absconded with the money.

“When he was found, he’d spent it all,” Sullivan said, chuckling. “But he had a good time--a true Venetian.”


Another reason to be thankful you live in Southern California:

You can sail on John Wayne’s yacht. Yes, you! No auditions, either!

The current owner of the late actor’s Wild Goose is running ads offering the yacht for harbor cruises out of Long Beach “for special occasions--truly special . . . surrounded by John Wayne’s own belongings. . . .”

You know that big sign on the mountain north of the Capitol Records Tower? What does it say: HOLLYWEED? OLLYWOOD? HOLYWOOD? It’s changed so often we can’t remember.

Anyway, it was altered Wednesday morning to read JOLLYGOOD. Just a coincidence that’s the slogan of a British airline that started service out of L.A. on the same day.

Speaking of jollygood Hollywood, you’ll be comforted to know that the Chamber of Commerce recently reached an agreement with the 10 other Hollywoods in the nation over the rights to the name, ending months of haggling. The chamber will demand exclusivity only for products advertising the California or movieland Hollywood.

The epic struggle calls to mind another fight over the magic name, precipitated when Culver City decided to rechristen itself Hollywood in 1937.

Culver City’s Chamber of Commerce, miffed that it produced more than half of the nation’s movies while Hollywood got most of the credit, declared that Hollywood was not an incorporated city and thus had no legal right to the name.

It began a petition drive, which angered L.A. and California officials as well as celebrities like Mae West.

“In the end, Culver City was outflanked by the power of the outraged Hollywood stars,” writer Leonard Leader recalled years later. Hollywood stayed put.

And that’s why, to this day, there’s still no Washington Boulevard Walk of Fame.

In the spirit of public interest, Only in L.A. would like readers who aren’t busily fashioning entries for the Malathion Poem of the Week contest to send us some original suggestions on how the Southland can conserve water.

One water-saving approach was noted by comic Jay Leno on the Johnny Carson show. He said that “a couple of joints on Sunset Boulevard now have damp T-shirt contests.”


In addition to its flashy restaurants and stores, West Hollywood is the Dry Cleaning Capital of Southern California. The city houses more than 30 dry cleaners within its 1.9 square miles, including Holloway Cleaners, which had the largest over-the-counter trade in the nation until business was slowed by a recent fire.