Essential California: Taps shut off at San Quentin

Good morning. It is Saturday, Aug. 29. Here's what you don't want to miss this weekend:


Outbreak: The water at San Quentin State Prison was shut off after one inmate was diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease, which can cause severe and sometimes fatal pneumonia. Dozens of other inmates also showed symptoms. Until the water is turned back on, inmates are using bottled water, water tanks and portable toilets. Los Angeles Times

Results, please: One month after a Los Angeles Times investigation found that 90% of students at for-profit law schools drop out before graduation, the California State Bar will require such schools to post their attrition rates. California is one of the only states that allow graduates of unaccredited law schools to take the state bar exam. Los Angeles Times

Back to basics: When it comes to cleaning up illegal dumping and graffiti and filling potholes, where you live in Los Angeles makes a difference. An analysis by the Los Angeles Times shows dramatically different response times depending on your neighborhood. "The city just has a bunch of inequity baked in. There is a lot that is accepted as 'that is just the way it is,'" said Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who wants a detailed assessment on how the city handles such complaints. Los Angeles Times

Grand vision: Architect Frank Gehry's plans for the L.A. River are still in their infancy, but members of his firm are starting to give hints about how it will take shape. One architect said the area's park space "could be reimagined as a linear Central Park." "Los Angeles is my home, and I've never seen a greater need than now to explore how our existing infrastructure may be used in more ways than intended," Gehry said in a statement. Los Angeles Times

Expensive operation: Undercover FBI agents spent more than $1 million wining and dining suspects like Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow during a five-year investigation. A defense attorney expects to use that evidence to show that authorities entrap defendants into committing crimes they otherwise would not have done. San Francisco Chronicle

Inadequate apology: An actress who accused an LAPD officer of racism after he responded to reports that she and her boyfriend were having sex in a car must serve 15 days of community service and two years of probation. Daniele Watts and her boyfriend, Brian James Lucas, were initially ordered to write an apology to the officer. A judge determined that the letter wasn't good enough; nor was a second one. That's when the couple received the harsher sentence. Los Angeles Times

I'll have a Larry Mantle: What could be more hipster than this? A new sandwich shop in Los Angeles' Frogtown neighborhood will name its sammies after NPR hosts. The Kai Ryssdal is pole-caught tuna, potato confit, celery, lettuce and black olive aioli. Eater LA


1. California's richest man, Larry Ellison, bought a Hawaiian island, and it turns out it's full of cats. BuzzFeed

2. This video presents eight facts that just might make you proud to be a Californian. BuzzFeed

3. Prepare to be shamed if you do a poor parking job in Los Angeles. LA Weekly

4. When he started making money, actor Kirk Douglas put his wife in charge of the finances until one day they wound up with $80 million. Now they're giving it away. Hollywood Reporter

5. Californians cut urban water use by 31% last month. See how well your community did with this drought report card. Los Angeles Times


Seeing the world: For Hyo So, a love affair with backpacking started with a quote: "At the end of life, you are haunted not by the things you did, but by the things you didn't do." At 60, he set out to travel the world on a shoestring budget. Los Angeles Times

High-profile retirement: It's the end of an era as the Spirit of America blimp is retired. For 13 years, the blimp appeared above football games and red carpets. Its home base could be seen as drivers cruised the 405 Freeway through Carson. Los Angeles Times

Changing of the guards: At any given moment, two U-2 spy planes are 13 miles above the Earth, surveying the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. But those planes, which have been flying for more than 60 years, are about to be retired in favor of drones. "There are these moments when I can see the sun over my left shoulder and the moon over my right. There aren't a lot of people that get to experience that," Maj. David Brill said. Los Angeles Times


Tuesday: The Los Angeles City Council is expected to take up the issue of an Olympics bid amid growing controversy over costs. It's also the first day of school in many parts of Orange County.

Friday: The Los Angeles County Fair opens. The Taste food event, presented by The Times, begins.

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