Upcoming Series Is Far-Fetched in More Ways Than One

“Blade Runner” Meets “The Practice” -- that’s the way California Lawyer magazine describes “Century City,” a coming CBS series about a prestigious law firm in the year 2053. Assuming there still are prestigious law firms in 2053, one can only imagine what their hourly rates will be.

Anyway, one of the show’s sci-fi angles is a firm partner who is genetically modified. “Breaking stereotype,” California Lawyer said, “the writers thankfully kept the character’s conscience intact.” Sounds like the show isn’t interested in realism.

Guide to Dining Adventurously: Hi. I’ll be your server today. Our specials (see accompanying) include:

* A menu that evidently inspires some vulgar remarks, or bad luck, submitted by Ron Wolfson of L.A.


* A Halloweenish offering that could be bad luck on a couple of levels if it crossed your plate, from my colleagues Bret and Deirdre Edgar. (Good thing it was actually blackened catfish.)

* A chicken sandwich that is accompanied by a tipsy dinner companion (hopefully one that will watch his language), from Jean Koch of L.A.

* A cooking course where the chef seems to get up close and personal (could he be tipsy, too?), from Jane Chevron of West L.A.

* And, finally, a restaurant that evidently serves meager helpings of chicken, from David Chan of Los Angeles.


Speaking of chicken (in a way): Colorado journalism professor Lynn Klyde-Silverstein wrote to the New York Times about the problems her “students encounter when they rely on a spelling checker instead of using a dictionary.” The “all-time classic,” she said, was a reference to a prominent journalist as the winner of a “puller surprise.”

Fans of the late L.A. Times columnist Jack Smith will recall that one of his favorite student malapropisms took a slightly different form. Smith used it as the title of one of his books, “How to Win a Pullet Surprise.”

I am a mighty Demo: Did you see where Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.), the hockey buff, donned pads and skates and scored a couple of goals on the ice in a pick-up game in New Hampshire? If his presidential quest fails, I’m sure he could sign on with the last-place Mighty Ducks out here.

miscelLAny: The “Black Cat” menu item above reminded me that David Brown dropped me a note about my recent “Barf” laundry product item. You may recall that Tom Armor snapped a shot of a “Barf” sign in Baku, Azerbaijan. Anyway, Brown writes that “barf” translates as “snow,” and I’m glad we cleared up that messy matter.

Steve Harvey can be reached at (800) LATimes, Ext. 77083, by fax at (213) 237-4712, by mail at Metro, L.A. Times, 202 W. 1st St., L.A. 90012, and by e-mail at