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Coming to the End of the Rainbow

It wasn't the biggest story of the day -- that was the fire, of course -- but it got the biggest response from all of you: the cancellation of the PBS show ''Reading Rainbow,'' after 26 years on the air and uncounted millions of kids for whom the show switched on the light of learning and the love of reading.

LeVar Burton, the host and executive producer, joined me to remember the show fondly, but no more so than you with your calls -- ESL kids who'd learned to speak and love English thanks to the broadcasts, parents who had switched on the TV to enliven and enlighten the second generation, their own kids. And who can forget Claire, the Studio City eight-year-old who called to say how much she loved the show and how sad she was that it wouldn't be on any more?

As for the fires, we spent a bit of time talking about what happens to insurance after fires, and even before them, for those living in fire-prone zones. Callers reported a variety of experiences -- from no problems to being unable to get as much coverage as they would like. In days to come we'll be talking about who should bear the cost of protecting houses built in high fire-risk zones: everyone, or just the people who choose to live there? How far does the social covenant go when people make decisions that might put their property at risk? And, come down to it, isn't all of California risky ground, one way or another?

As the fires remind us, everyone has a story to tell -- what's yours? Tell it to us; go to the Patt Morrison page at

Oh, here's one: LA County fire spokesman Scott Visyak -- you've heard him often over the last few days -- says that we here at KPCC are his ''dawgs,'' which in street slang is a good thing: he's lost count of how many people have told him they heard him on KPCC. Ah, fame!

-- Patt Morrison