Traffic is getting worse. But when Sunday’s...

Traffic is getting worse. But when Sunday’s New York Times quoted a businessman as saying he had moved away from L.A. because it took him “an hour and a half to two hours” to commute from South Pasadena to downtown, we wondered what his mode of transportation was.

A buckboard? A bicycle? Or did he go by foot? After all, it’s a distance of about eight miles. (Traffic wasn’t that congested in the futuristic L.A. movie, “Blade Runner.”)

We phoned the ex-Angeleno, Richard Bingham, 59, now a resident of Hot Springs, Ark.

The article, it turns out, contained a slight error. Bingham was born in South Pasadena. But, he said, “I was commuting from Covina” (about 30 miles away).


South Pasadena . . . Covina . . . well, it was one of those suburbs out in L.A. . . .

Calling L.A. names is almost an art form here. In fact, we found a witty example etched in a manhole cover on Wilshire Boulevard in West L.A. (see photo). And you thought the city Bureau of Public Works had no sense of humor.

Street Wonder No. 2:

Unusual sights at bus stops are by no means uncommon. Still, Ed Lowell of Tarzana was a bit surprised to see a tomato plant sprouting in the sidewalk on Beverly Boulevard in the Fairfax district. It bore some impressive-looking green fruit too. (Or are they vegetables?)


Referring to his own back yard, Lowell laughed and said: “What I don’t understand is why they don’t grow that well for a gardener who gives them water and fertilizer.”

Forbidden Fruit Advisory:

Jorge Jarrin, KABC’s helicopter traffic reporter, has no trouble recalling the most unusual activity he’s witnessed from the sky.

“A few years ago, Bud Furillo (then a sports talk-show host) was joking on the air that, like window-washers, we don’t always tell what we see. At that very moment, I came upon a couple in the throes of ecstasy on a blanket in what they thought was a secluded pasture off Mulholland Drive. It was a one-in-a-million coincidence. We circled around and came in low overhead. We were probably only a hundred yards off the ground. The guy jumped up and started doing the one-legged hop, trying to put his pants on.”


The woman wasn’t so panicky, Jarrin recalled.

“She jumped up and started waving to us,” he said. “She seemed to get a real kick out of it.”

List of the Day:

Findings of a professional survey of the eating habits of spectators 12 years and older at Dodger Stadium games:


1. General admission-level fans preferred hot dogs while field-level diners opted for pizza.

2. About seven out of 10 people making a concession purchase were men.

3. The food most likely to be bought by women was pizza.

4. Hot dogs were most popular among fans 45 and older.


5. Only 6.7% of the pizza-eaters were 45 and older, compared with 27.7% of the under-21 group.

The latest edition of The Eagle, a Beverly Hills-based publication for New York high school alumni, has an ad that says:

“Free Computer Match Dating Service for NEW YORKERS ONLY!”

We wouldn’t have it any other way.



Pioneer historian Harris Newmark wrote that the first steel-constructed and “truly fireproof” building in the Civic Center was the 93-year-old Homer Laughlin Building, which houses the Grand Central Market.