Here's another installment of our Hard Times series, where Off-Ramp talks to everyday people and ask them how they're faring, since the recession ended, supposedly. This time, Kevin Ferguson talks with a Mt Washington couple whose plans have changed drastically: they've lost their jobs, possibly their house, but that might not be a bad thing.
On December 17, a Tunisian street vendor set himself alight and sparked protests that engulfed the Middle East. Six months and six countries later, the Arab Spring has swept from Tunisia to Cairo. And to California. The majority of California's nearly quarter-million Arab Americans live in the Southland. That portion alone is more than in any other U.S. state. KPCC found out what it's like for them to watch a revolution from 8,000 miles away. It's our Arab Spring in the Southland project, check it out, and CLICK THROUGH to see a video.
UPDATE 5-20-2011: The Theatricum Botanicum, a 3-hundred seat outdoor amphitheater nestled in unspoiled Topanga Canyon, opens its season the first weekend of June with two Shakespeare plays - The Merry Wives of Windsor and A Midsummer Night's Dream. They'll be joined over the summer by four other plays in repertory. The Theatricum Botanicum was founded by noted actor and liberal Will Geer, and it's still run by his daughter Ellen Geer. The plays are just part of the story. Thousands of schoolkids also come to the compound every year on field trips, to learn about the stage and stagecraft. Here's a piece from the Off-Ramp archives.
As a journalist and host, it's my job to generalize from the specific, and often to generalize from the personally specific, so: Every time I go to a local theatre production, I say to myself, "Self, that was good! I need to do this more often." Then, it takes me months to get out again, and I repeat the whole process. Since I'm not an extrordinary person, I'm going to assume, like me, that a reasonable amount of you need a kick in the pants to see more local theatre.
It all happens in John's car: Tom Petty's keyboardist, Benmont Tench and his Casio get in the back seat to play a very Off-Rampy song ... Queena Kim conducts a creativity masterclass ... Food writer Russ Parsons brings pie ... Charles Phoenix & Chris Nichols on the joys of getting lost in SoCal ... And Mayor Garcetti challenges John to a backgammon game. (PHOTO: On old off-ramp from the Arroyo Seco Parkway. Credit: John Rabe)
On the second to last episode: an expert on relics, mummies, crypts, and the way we live with death ... KPCC's Matt Bloom looks at the fungal disease killing LA's ficus trees ... The amazing career of Ruth Batchelor: founder of the LA Film Critics Association and songwriter for Elvis ... Lou Adler on the 50th anniversary the Monterey Pop Music Festival ... And Off-Ramp's last producer remembers the first time ever he heard our show. (Image: John Rabe)
We sample astronomer Neil deGrasse Tyson's talk last weekend at the Aero Theatre, including his top StarTalk guests ... For Trans Pride: punk singer Drew Arriola Sands, whose career took off after she transitioned ... The California African American Museum's "The Evanesced," inspired by a notorious South LA serial killer, celebrates black women's lives. ... Hank Rosenfeld's card to his late father. We'll hear a poignant Father's Day card from contributor Hank Rosenfeld. Hank plays tape of him and his late father – a World War Two vet and shoe store magnate - driving around their hometown, talking about life.
Brian Henson pays tribute to his dad Jim's bawdier side in "Puppet Up! Uncensored" ... the new book "Everything I Need to Know I Learned in the Twilight Zone" ... A restaurant where you're served by our robot overlords ... We talk with the dancing homeless Crenshaw Cowboy by his spaceship ... And rescuing The Formosa Cafe, a piece of Hollywood history. (Photo: Cypress Park, June 2017. John Rabe)
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