News and culture through the lens of Southern California.
Hosted by A Martínez
Airs Weekdays 2 to 3 p.m.

Fire safety on the Fourth of July, THC beer, Jimmy O. Yang explains "How to American"

Firworks on display at a TNT Fireworks stand in Inglewood, California on July 3, 2017.
Firworks on display at a TNT Fireworks stand in Inglewood, California on July 3, 2017.
Daryl Barker/ KPCC

Listen to story

Download this story 35.0MB

School may be out for most Angeleno kids, but news is just out about the school Elon Musk is operating out of his SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne. Plus, six months after Californians legalized the sale of recreational pot, cannabis companies are expanding with new offerings, like THC beer. And "Silicon Valley" actor, stand-up comedian and Hong Kong-to-L.A. transplant Jimmy O. Yang explains "How to American," as the U.S. immigration debate heats up.

Fire Watch 2018

(Starts at 1:26)

It's almost the Fourth of July which means, firefighting agencies are on high alert for the weekend. We speak to a battalion chief about how his department will combat the potentially dangerous season approaching.


The Valley gets a Metro rail

(Starts at 6:06)

The San Fernando Valley is getting a new light rail line. Despite having a population of almost two million people, the Valley has been home to just two metro train stops. But L.A. Metro has greenlit a new route which is projected to open in 2027. This new line would add 14 new stops, many of them along Van Nuys Blvd, to connect Metro's orange line buses with Metrolink commuter trains. We explore what more public transit means for the eastern part of the San Fernando Valley.


LA's Schools Are Segregated. LAUSD Says There's Only So Much They Can Do

(Starts at 18:15)

The research is increasingly clear: children of all races learn better in racially-integrated schools. Yet in the Los Angeles Unified School District, more than half of the students — around 289,000 kids — attend a school that's more than 90 percent black and Latino.

More on

 "How to American"

(Starts at 12:22)

This Fourth of July, we visit an unofficial guide on How to American. Comedian-turned-actor Jimmy O. Yang plays the character Jian Yang on the HBO series "Silicon Valley." Having moved from Hong Kong to Los Angeles at age 13, O. Yang entered the entertainment industry despite his parents' disapproval. His recent book "How to American: An Immigrant's Guide to Disappointing Your Parents" chronicles his move to the country as an awkward teen, his struggle as a comic and actor, and the pursuit of his own version of the American dream. 


"How to American" by Jimmy O. Yang book cover.
via Da Capo Press

THC Beer? It's a thing

(Starts at 31:14)

It's hard to go too far in Southern California these days without catching a whiff of marijuana. Now that recreational pot is legal in in the state, cannabis companies are creating new ways for customers to enjoy it. One of the newest trends is THC beer. THC, or Tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical in marijuana that gives it a unique buzz. That's not to be confused with CBD, the part that's said to have medical benefits like relaxation but isn't supposed to intoxicate you. A couple of companies in SoCal are on the leading edge of crafting this special beer, including Cannabiniers, based in San Diego.


Hacking Summer...Take Two style

(Starts at 23:46)

Don't let these three things ruin your summer fun: Pools, gas grills, and fireworks. Austin Cross gets some summertime pro-tips from LAFD Captain Erik Scott. Also, here are some free fireworks shows to suggest to your would-be pyro patriots:

         200 N Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012

        19700 Rinaldi St, Porter Ranch, CA 91326

        3911 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90037

       3800 Stephen M White Dr, San Pedro, CA 90731


What does it mean to you to be an American?

We hear from listeners about their personal path to citizenship.


Listen below:

Tuesday Reviewsday

(Starts at 39:51)

Today on Tuesday Reviewsday, the immigration debate takes center stage. A new collaboration from artists Gaby Moreno and Van Dyke Parks shine a scathing light on the US and its treatment of immigrants. 

A verse of note: "I'm I an immigrant or a new slave ... the immigrants are here to stay." 

Meanwhile, musicians David Garza and Paulina Reza (of the Chamanas) record a haunting rendition of the 1941 hit "Besame Mucho," viewed through the haunting lens of the immigration process and the uncertainty that many will face on the journey.